Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29396
Hints and tips by pommers
+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +
BD Rating – Difficulty *** – Enjoyment ****
Hola from the Vega Baja where summer has finally arrived, the state of alarm is over and the nights are now drawing in. Just to make you all jealous here’s a link to the Vega Baja weather forecast for the next week:-
Maybe it’s just me but I thought this was the trickiest Monday puzzle for some time but also the most enjoyable. I didn’t help myself by putting the wrong first word in 12a which made 13d impossible until the penny finally dropped. I wonder if any of you made the same mistake. There’s only one full anagram in this puzzle but there are five clues with an anagram involved in the wordplay and a couple of them are rather cunningly disguised. I hope you all enjoyed the tussle as much as I did.
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.
9a A Poet Laureate perhaps crossing over on a ship (6)
ABOARD: A (from the clue) followed by another word for a poet all placed around (crossing) an O(ver). I think the word laureate is wilfully misleading here. I’d have solved the clue a lot quicker if I hadn’t thought it might have something to do with Andrew Motion or another Laureate, d’oh!
10a Detail in a small symbol (6)
ASSIGN: Detail is a verb here. It’s the A from the clue followed by S(mall) and finally a symbol or omen.
11a Persuasive speech from Republican ahead of other fluid one by Conservative (8)
RHETORIC: You need an anagram (fluid) of OTHER followed by the letter that looks like a number one and a C for Conservative. Before that lot (ahead of) you need an R(epublican).
12a Suddenly agreed to knock down dive (2,3,4,5)
AT ONE FELL SWOOP: A phrase (2,3) meaning agreed followed by a word meaning to knock down, a tree perhaps, and then a dive. This is where I had the wrong first word for a while.
15a Struggle with appearance (4)
VIEW: A word meaning to struggle followed by a W(ith).
19a Sign of boredom? New approach backfired (4)
YAWN: N(ew) and an approach or method all reversed (backfired).
23a Foolish friar receiving fine, leading very loud mob (4-4)
RIFF RAFF: An anagram (foolish) of FRIAR has F(ine) inserted (receiving) and that lot is placed before (leading) the musical notation for very loud. I couldn’t believe there could be this many F’s in the answer.
25a Discover the truth about doctor breaking law (6)
RUMBLE: One of the two letter doctors inserted into (breaking) another word for a law.
27a Rare panic involving head of chambers (6)
SCARCE: To panic or frighten with a C (head of Chambers) inserted (involving).
28a Hurry up, or set point lost (4,2,2)
STEP ON IT: Anagram (lost) of SET POINT.
1d Area final cut short, unfortunately (4)
ALAS: A(rea) followed by a word for final without its last letter (cut short).
2d Some of Horatio Nelson’s quota (6)
RATION: A lurker hiding in (some of) Horatio Nelson.
3d Celebrity‘s naked? Not half! (4)
STAR: A slang term meaning naked but only the first half of it.
4d Crime writer succeeded when introducing the ultimate character in Ellery Queen (6)
SAYERS: This is the crime writer who created Lord Peter Wimsey. Start with an S(uceeded) and after it put a two letter word meaning when.Into that you need to insert a Y (ultimate character in EllerY) and the usual two letters for the Queen. This one of those that’s easier to solve than write a hint for.
5d Dr No with strange ploy for domination (8)
MONOPOLY: Another of the two letter doctors, not the one in 25a, followed by the NO from the clue and finally an anagram (strange) of PLOY. Here’s the best bit from the film . . .
6d Support ruling’s reasoning (10)
BRAINPOWER: The support garment for a lady’s chest followed by a phrase (2,5) describing the ruling party in parliament. I can think of other phrases describing the current ruling party but BD would probably edit them out on grounds of decency!
13d Short journey to exchange safety device (4,6)
TRIP SWITCH: A journey followed by a word meaning exchange or swap. I don’t thing we need the word short in this clue and it’s not made any easier when you think the first word starts with an N, d’oh!
14d Ring up describing island shrub (5)
LILAC: A word meaning ring, on the phone, reversed (up in a down clue) and placed around (describing) an I for Island.
18d Upset about poetry (7)
REVERSE: Two letters for about followed by a word for poetry.
21d Tricky question from guy on right (6)
TEASER: You need to know that to guy is a verb meaning to kid or make fun of. Another word for that followed by (on) an R(ight).
22d Hunter of game given stick (6)
NIMROD: A game followed by (given) a stick or bar gives the mighty hunter from the bible who had a maritime patrol aircraft named after him. It’s also the alias used by Toughie setter Elgar for puzzles in the Independent so here’s a piece of Elgar’s music of the same name . . .
24d To-do caused by us in force, southern (4)
FUSS: Take the US from the clue and insert into (in) an F(orce) and an S(outhern).
26d Landowner taking day off in sanctuary (4)
LAIR: A Scottish landowner without his final D (taking day off).
Quite a lot of blue today but I think 5d is my favourite as it describes the Bond character Dr No quite well. Up there on the podium are 4d and 25a.
Quick crossword puns:
Top row: KNEW + WAIVE = NEW WAVE
Bottom row: WREAK + WIRE = REQUIRE