Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29384
Hints and tips by pommers
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BD Rating – Difficulty * – Enjoyment ***
Hola from the Vega Baja where summer seems to have been suspended for today. It’s a bit chilly this morning and I can hear a rumble or two of thunder in the distance. Normal service is due to be restored on Wednesday.
As to the puzzle, well it didn’t put up much of a fight. I got eight of the acrosses and then twelve of the downs on first pass so the horses didn’t even prick up their ears. My only pause was with 16d where I couldn’t believe that -A-C-D-G could be correct so I spent a bit of time checking my across answers before the penny dropped. I don´t think many of you will be requiring any hints today.
As usual the ones I liked most are in blue. The definitions are underlined in the clues and the answers are under the “click here” buttons so don’t click on them unless you really want to see the answer. Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.
1a 26 at hop around two hours before midnight (10)
ATTENDANCE: You need to have the answer to 26a for this one although the word has a different meaning here. It’s the AT from the clue and another word for a hop or ball placed around the time two hours before midnight. I’m not keen on clues that can’t be solved without the answer to another clue.
9a Distinctive person (10)
INDIVIDUAL: Double definition.
10a Guy to miss start of march taking place soon (4)
ANON: A word for a guy, as in a male person, without its M (to miss start of March) followed by a word meaning taking place or happening.
12a Sappers become weary, go to bed (6)
RETIRE: The usual two letters for the sappers followed by a word meaning to become weary.
13a An advocate by day, that woman in a tent, scratching head (8)
ADHERENT: Start with the A from the clue and ENT (Tent scratching head). Into this insert (in) a D(ay) and a word meaning that woman.
15a & 18 Across Long-running show song (3,5,2,2,1,11)
WHO WANTS TO BE A MILLIONAIRE: Double definition. The show is a long running quiz show on television. Here’s the song . . .
18a See 15 Across
21a Huge reduction in fuel that’s mined (8)
COLOSSAL: A word for a reduction inserted into (in) some black fuel that’s mined.
22a Sophisticated city, European (6)
URBANE: A word which can mean city, as in city life, followed by E(uropean).
24a Slightly wet in Amsterdam, perhaps (4)
DAMP: A lurker hiding in (in) Amsterdam perhaps.
26a Barrier in former London prison, not new (4)
GATE: Take a famous London prison, closed in 1902, and remove the NEW (not new). I believe the Old Bailey now stands on the site of this prison.
27a Traders — I’ve upset one located on Madison Avenue, maybe (10)
ADVERTISER: Anagram (upset) of TRADERS IVE.
1d A change involving one enclosure for birds (6)
AVIARY: Take the A from the clue and a word meaning change or alter and insert (involving) the letter that looks like a number one.
2d What single person might want until now? (2,4)
TO DATE: This could be a double definition. It’s a phrase meaning until now and it could also be something that a single person may want to do.
3d Elves sent her out anyway (12)
NEVERTHELESS: Anagram (out) of ELVES SENT HER.
4d Assistant in a team lacking leadership (4)
AIDE: The A from the clue and another word for a team but without its first letter (lacking leadership).
5d Apprehensive admitting girl makes wine (10)
CHARDONNAY: Take a word meaning apprehensive (5) and insert a five letter girl’s name.
7d Behold, through window, legendary knight … (8)
LANCELOT: The usual two letters for behold or look inserted into a type of window gives one of the Knights of the Round Table.
8d … troubadour in street protected by Merlin somehow (8)
MINSTREL: Two letters for street inserted into (protected by) an anagram (somehow) of MERLIN.
14d Pair took in wad, anxious to secure folio (3,2,1,4)
TWO OF A KIND: An anagram (anxious?) of TOOK IN WAD with an F(olio) inserted (to secure). I’ve never seen anxious used as an anagram indicator but I guess it works.
16d Look to follow Ofwat, say (8)
WATCHDOG: A word meaning to look or spectate followed by a word meaning to follow or tail.
17d Envoy‘s graduation certificate required on top of those (8)
DIPLOMAT: A graduation certificate followed by (on in a down clue) the first letter of (top of) Those.
19d Shows concern over son’s pet (6)
CARESS: A word meaning shows concern followed by (over in a down clue) an S(on).
23d Club losing wickets, and advantage (4)
EDGE: A type of golf club without (losing) the letter for wicket in cricket notation.
My favourite was 16d with 23d and 24a on the podium but all the clues a pretty good.
Quick crossword pun: MOW + HEAT + OWES = MOJITOS
If there’s a pun in the bottom line I can’t see it.