Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29400
Hints and tips by Deep Threat
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BD Rating – Difficulty *** – Enjoyment ***
Good morning from South Staffs, where the temperature was still over 20° when I solved this crossword after midnight last night. This morning we may have a thunderstorm.
The four Xs in the grid suggest this may be by ProXimal. Whether it was the heat or not, I made fairly slow progress with it today, finishing well into *** time. There’s nothing particularly obscure in the answers, just a need to tease out the wordplay.
In the hints below, the definitions are underlined. The answers are hidden under the ANSWER buttons, so don’t click if you don’t want to see them.
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1a House supporting part-time player (4-3)
SEMI-PRO – The short form of a type of house often found in the suburbs, followed by a Latin word for ‘supporting’ or ‘in favour of’.
5a Shock criminal pinching the Queen’s neckwear (7)
CHOKERS – Anagram (criminal) of SHOCK wrapped round the Queen’s regnal cipher.
9a Graduate wrapping article, current fad (5)
MANIA – A senior Arts graduate wrapped around an indefinite article and the algebraic symbol used for electric current.
10a After dram, note phone moving irregularly (9)
TOTTERING – Put together another word for a dram of spirits, a musical note from the sol-fa scale, and a verb for ‘to phone’.
11a Persist with boil, almost completely coarse (3,7)
SEE THROUGH – Another word for ‘boil’ with its last letter missing (almost completely), followed by a synonym for ‘coarse’.
12a Chemical element unknown: discounting lead, tin and carbon (4)
ZINC – Put together an algebraic unknown, (t)IN (from the clue) with its first letter removed (discounting lead), and the chemical symbol for carbon.
14a Stroke and buff item of hardware (9,3)
BUTTERFLY NUT – A swimming stroke followed by another word for a buff or enthusiast.
18a Turning to police, lady acted nonchalantly (6,2,4)
PLAYED IT COOL – Anagram (turning) of TO POLICE LADY. There’s only one way to illustrate this one:
21a Reportedly wished not to have been ignorant (4)
RUDE – Another word for ‘ignorant’ which is a homophone (reportedly) of a word for ‘wished not to have been’ or ‘regretted’.
22a Agree about withdrawal’s intricacy (10)
COMPLEXITY – Another word for ‘agree’ or ‘obey’ wrapped around a withdrawal or departure.
25a Carpet unorthodox at rear in a church (9)
AXMINSTER – A (from the clue) and a large church such as may be found at York, placed either side of the last letter (at rear) of unorthodoX.
26a Urgency of hard master having no limits (5)
HASTE – An abbreviation for Hard followed by (m)ASTE(r) with its outside letters removed (having no limits).
27a Who votes for surrender? (5,2)
HANDS UP – Double definition: a call for a vote; or a sign of surrender.
28a Wretched orphan bearing old weapon (7)
HARPOON – Anagram (wretched) of ORPHAN with Old inserted.
1d Indian fare like nothing mother’s served up (6)
SAMOSA – Put together another word for ‘like’, the letter which looks like a zero, and a short form of ‘mother’s’, then reverse the result to get this Indian snack.
2d Cheeky girls from north overcome by cocktails (6)
MINXES – A generic word for what cocktails are, wrapped round North.
3d American in Yale intoxicated with posh theatres (10)
PLAYHOUSES – Anagram (intoxicated) of YALE and POSH, wrapped round one of the usual abbreviations for ‘American’.
4d Content in scout doing best (5)
OUTDO – Hidden in the clue. The definition is a verb.
5d Absolute fan of jazz, say, or disco occasionally (9)
CATEGORIC – Put together an old word for a jazz fan, the abbreviation for ‘say’ or ‘for example’, OR (from the clue), and alternate letters (occasionally) of dIsCo.
6d Cattle releasing core part of gas (4)
OXEN – Remove the central letters from an atmospheric gas essential for life, to get some draught animals.
7d Issues from leader in revolt falling (8)
EDITIONS – Start with another word for ‘revolt’ or ‘treason’, then move the first letter to the end (leader … falling).
8d Wisdom of Turkish commander in southern metropolis (8)
SAGACITY – Southern, and another word for a metropolis, placed either side of a Turkish military commander.
13d Completely understand that woman supporting male singer (10)
ALTOGETHER – Put together a high-voiced male singer, an informal word for ‘understand’, and the pronoun for ‘that woman’.
15d Both sons dismissed this non-stop balding (4,2,3)
THIN ON TOP – Remove both the abbreviations for Son from THI(s) NON-(s)TOP.
16d Father erected a porch after fixing driveway, perhaps (8)
APPROACH – Reverse (erected) a short word for ‘father’, then add an anagram (after fixing) of A PORCH.
17d Prince informally introduced to monarch an odd-jobber (8)
HANDYMAN – Wrap the abbreviation for the formal mode of address to the Queen around an informal version of the name of one of her sons, then add AN (from the clue).
19d Calamity if climbing rocky coast shaking tons (6)
FIASCO – Reverse (climbing) IF (from the clue), then add an anagram (rocky) of COAS(t) without the abbreviation for Tons.
20d Monster disembowelled both weedy, vile sailors (6)
WYVERN – Remove the inside letters (disembowelled) from W(eed)Y and V(il)E, then add the letters found after the name of one of Her Majesty’s sailors.
23d Seat covered in paper chains (5)
PERCH – Hidden in the clue.
24d Boozers regularly disposed of winnings (4)
INNS – Alternate letters (regularly disposed of) of wInNiNgS.
The Quick Crossword pun GASSED + DRONE + GNOME = GASTRONOME