Toughie No 2304 by Giovanni
Hints and tips by Gazza
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BD Rating – Difficulty **/*** – Enjoyment **
Not a lot of laughs today – Giovanni has given us mostly pretty straightforward clues but with a couple of obscure terms thrown in to ensure that we get full value from our copies of Chambers. Thanks to him.
Please leave a comment telling us how you fared and what you thought of the puzzle.
1a European fellow entertaining star, having party somewhere in UK (10)
MACEDONIAN: an adult male contains a synonym for star or expert, a festive party and a two-letter abbreviation for a constituent part of the UK.
6a Group having drink before start of meal (4)
TEAM: a non-alcoholic drink precedes the starting letter of meal.
9a Irritating bishop gets round the church HQ, having grabbed head of staff (10)
BOTHERSOME: assemble the chess abbreviation for bishop, the round letter, THE and the city where a major religion has its HQ containing the first letter of staff.
10a Trips to buy things beginning to end (4)
HOPS: a verb to buy things with its first letter moved to the end. Trips here means dances.
12a Preamble has spacing between printed lines reduced slightly (4-2)
LEAD-IN: a word in the printing industry for the strip of a heavy metal used to separate lines of type (LEADING) without its final G. Thanks to Chambers.
13a Cheaper wood has one making attempt to get hold of it (8)
TRASHIER: a type of white, hard wood is contained inside a person who strives.
15a Musical piece Verdi arranged with tempo not unusual (12)
DIVERTIMENTO: paste together an anagram (arranged) of VERDI, a synonym for time or speed and a second anagram (unusual) of NOT.
18a See one man try to change what is needed to secure contract? (7-5)
EARNEST-MONEY: an anagram (to change) of SEE ONE MAN TRY gets us a nominal sum paid in confirmation of a contract. I’d never heard of it and the ODE says it is “chiefly United States”.
21a Two notes one left in church where one lives? (8)
DOMICILE: start with two notes from tonic sol-fa then insert the Roman numeral for one and the abbreviation for left into one of our usual abbreviations for church.
22a Member needs your and my protection (6)
ARMOUR: stick together a bodily member and a possessive pronoun meaning ‘your and my’.
24a Ancient language in China and India (4)
PALI: what china means in Cockney rhyming slang followed by the letter that India represents in the Nato Phonetic Alphabet.
25a See inside record a fifties youngster regarded as ‘disturbed‘ (10)
DISLOCATED: an exhortation to see or behold goes inside a recording medium. Finish with A and what Chambers calls ‘an unruly adolescent’ of the 1950s.
26a Journey made by newly-wed heading off? (4)
RIDE: remove the initial letter from one member of a newly-wed couple. One has to be careful these days not to associate words like he or she to the traditional terms for those getting wed.
27a Line is written by this writer in second episode (10)
INSTALMENT: the abbreviation for line and the objective pronoun for ‘this writer’ go inside another word for second or moment.
1d Fluid and second fluid in the body (6)
MOBILE: fuse together a short word for a second or short time and the name of a fluid secreted by the liver.
2d Peasant and tot sitting awkwardly in vehicle (6)
COTTAR: an anagram (sitting awkwardly) of TOT goes inside a road vehicle. The answer (new to me) is a peasant in Scotland allowed to live in a cottage in return for providing labour to the landlord.
3d Nice guide led off with precautionary steps to avoid trouble (3,9)
DUE DILIGENCE: an anagram (off) of NICE GUIDE LED.
4d It’s clear son is hiding in den (4)
NEST: an adjective meaning clear of all charges and taxes has the abbreviation for son lurking inside it.
5d Notice star leading fashion, upright character being held in high regard (10)
ADMIRATION: bring together an abbreviated notice, the name of a star (MIRA) and a noun meaning fashion or style containing the perpendicular letter.
7d Lovers should express them — so no time to be wasted! (8)
EMOTIONS: an anagram (to be wasted) of SO NO TIME.
8d Pulpy stuff brought to kitchen? You may eat it (8)
MUSHROOM: charade of pulpy or sloppy foodstuff and what a kitchen is an example of in a house.
11d Redeveloped city alarms me, lacking a logical design? (12)
ASYMMETRICAL: an anagram (redeveloped) of CITY ALARMS ME.
14d Huge number, male or female, given work at home, love to get stuck in (10)
SEXTILLION: collect together what can be either male or female, a verb to work (the soil) and an adverb meaning ‘at home’ containing the zero-resembling letter.
16d Mineral I removed from ground glittered, not half (8)
FELDSPAR: remove the I from an area of agricultural ground and append the first half of a verb meaning glittered or twinkled.
17d Complained with good drink allowed to seep away (8)
GRUMBLED: weld together the abbreviation for good, an alcoholic drink and a verb meaning allowed to seep away or drew off.
19d Somewhere in India needing support — it’s hairy (6)
GOATEE: a state on the west coast of India and the name of a support for a small ball.
20d Devon town not getting on — praise looked for (6)
CREDIT: remove ON from the end of the name of a market town in mid-Devon.
23d Idiot in dress — the fellow getting thrown out (4)
CLOT: a verb to dress (someone, as a couturier might) without the male pronoun.
None of the clues stood out for me today. Which one(s) did you like?