Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29478
Hints and tips by Deep Threat
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BD Rating – Difficulty * – Enjoyment ***
Good morning from South Staffs on a sunny September morning.
I only time my crossword solving when I am blogging, because I use the paper version the reswt of the week, but today’s puzzle was the fastest solve that I can recall – and judging from the number of people appearing on the leaderboard last night, there were plenty of others who would agree. A little light relief for gloomy times.
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 Insect hovering around door maybe causing rage (3,3,3,6)
FLY OFF THE HANDLE – Cryptic definition of a phrase for ‘to break out in a rage’.
9a Inflexible international organisation British close (9)
UNBENDING – Put together the usual international political gathering, an abbreviation for British, and another word for the ‘close’.
10a Rows hard, first to last (5)
TIFFS – Start with a word for ‘hard’ or ‘inflexible’, then move its first letter to the end.
11a Earlier church official (5)
PRIOR – Double definition, the second being a monastic rank, just below ‘abbot’.
12a Ace evening with no one spreading retribution (9)
VENGEANCE – Anagram (spreading) of ACE EVEN(i)NG with the Roman numeral for one removed (with no one).
13a They learn of the sun’s trapping carbon and hydrogen (8)
SCHOLARS – Another way of saying “of the sun’s” (including the ‘S), wrapped round the chemical symbols for carbon and hydrogen.
14a In France nothing is put in to back the East (6)
ORIENT – Reverse (back) TO (from the clue), and insert the French word for ‘nothing’.
16a Nanny‘s gold shoes, perhaps (2,4)
AU PAIR – The chemical symbol for gold, followed by a word which applied to shoes or trousers.
18a Detective’s area is murder (8)
DISPATCH – The abbreviation for a detective rank, plus the ‘S, followed by a slang word for a policeman’s area of responsibility.
22a Model that’s still on display (9)
MANNEQUIN – Cryptic definition of a shop dummy.
23a Heard insects in leaves (5)
FLEES – This word for ‘leaves (in a hurry)’ sounds like (heard) some biting insects.
24a King eludes one of his followers in darkness (5)
NIGHT – Remove the chess notation for a King from the name of one of the minor chess pieces.
25a Where a map-reader’s only way is up (5,4)
SOUTH POLE – Maps customarily have North at the top, so travelling north is up the map. The answer is the one place on earth where, whichever direction you take, you will be travelling north.
26a Wind cannot tug sailor hats off (15)
CONGRATULATIONS – Anagram (wind) of CANNOT TUG SAILOR.
1d Football people cross supporting United — dad’s mistake (4,3)
FAUX PAS – Put together the initials of the governing body for football in England, United, a cross-shaped letter, and “dad’s”.
2d Eccentric hobby is not polite (7)
YOBBISH – Anagram (eccentric) of HOBBY IS.
3d Official in black who regularly sends people off (7,8)
FUNERAL DIRECTOR – Cryptic definition of someone responsible for sending you off, not the football pitch, but this mortal coil.
4d This must be detailed with each burglary? (8)
THIEVERY – Remove the final letter (de-tailed) of THI(s) (from the clue, then add another word for ‘each’.
5d Occasionally witnessed teen’s grim need for something to drive (6)
ENGINE – Alternate letters (occasionally) of tEeN’s GrIm NeEd.
6d As a bowler’s jettisoned with little justification? (2,3,4,2,1,3)
AT THE DROP OF A HAT – The bowler here is a piece of headgear, and the answer is a phrase which is a metaphor for doing something with little justification (groups of six, anyone?).
7d Head of force in demand over church security (7)
DEFENCE – Reverse (over) another word for ‘demand’ (as in ‘supply and demand’), insert the first letter (head) of Force (from the clue), then add an abbreviation for the Church of England.
8d Most natural in Spain — snooze showing bottom on top! (7)
EASIEST – Start with the IVR code for Spain, then add a Spanish afternoon nap, but with the last letter moved to the beginning.
15d Criminal bail a nun furnishes once in six months? (8)
BIANNUAL – anagram (criminal) of BAIL A NUN.
16d ‘Heart of Moral Man’ a cert for book of the year (7)
ALMANAC – Hidden in the clue.
17d Longin’ to steal thousand grand and drink to celebrate? (4,3)
PINK GIN – Another word for ‘longin’’ (remember to remove the final G), wrapped round abbreviations for ‘thousand’ and ‘grand’.
19d Guitarist’s effect, lot more distorted (7)
TREMOLO – Anagram (distorted) of LOT MORE.
20d One giving party among toffs’ set, so hard up (7)
HOSTESS – Hidden in reverse (up) in the clue.
21d Star’s bedtime (6)
SUNSET – The star here is the nearest to the earth.
The Quick Crossword pun KIRK + DUG + LESS = KIRK DOUGLAS