Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29569
Hints and tips by pommers
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ****
Hola from the Vega Baja where we have been spared the very heavy snowfall which is causing chaos elsewhere in Spain. We had three days of pretty continuous rain and it’s very cold by Costa Blanca standards. Only 8°C during the day on Saturday and 1°C overnight. At 0830 this morning when I started this post it was 3°C. Apparently it will be Wednesday before normal service will be resumed when we are forecast 16°C and wall-to-wall sunshine. We live in hope.
As to today’s puzzle I found it to be just what I’ve come to expect on a Monday. Not too difficult but with some very elegant cluing and a few sneaky definitions and bits of wordplay to keep us on our toes. Some of you will be disappointed this week as there are only two anagrams and one clue which is half anagram.
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.
5a Legendary character international tenor starved of love (6)
ICARUS: Start with I (International) and follow with a famous Italian tenor but without his final O (starved of love). Being in Spain my first thought was for Placido Domingo as the tenor but it doesn’t work!
10a Colonials thrive, unexpectedly, in ‘The Scarlet Letter’, say (10,5)
HISTORICAL NOVEL: Anagram (unexpectedly) of COLONIALS THRIVE.
11a Anger about a politician causing storm (7)
RAMPAGE: Take the A from the clue and the usual two letters for a politician and around them put another word for anger. “Politician causing storm”. This couldn’t be an allusion to the current incumbent in the White House, could it?
13a One initially unwilling to ring the Italian about waterproof material (8)
OILCLOTH: Take an O (One initially) and a word meaning unwilling and put them around (to ring) the Italian definite article and a single letter for about.
15a Extremely deceptive, my colour scheme (5)
DECOR: DE (extremely DeceptivE) followed by another exclamation meaning my or wow.
18a Suffer at home: endless wind (5)
INCUR: The usual two letters for at home followed by a word meaning to wind or coil but without its last letter (endless).
20a Make little of miserable drama (8)
DOWNPLAY: A word meaning miserable as in unhappy or blue followed by a drama on stage.
A “Miserable” drama perhaps . . . ?
23a Worker briefly left royal house (7)
HANOVER: One of the usual workers without its last letter (briefly) followed by a word meaning left as in surplus.
25a Passage from another court (7)
EXTRACT: A word for another or one more followed by the usual abbreviation of court.
26a Console member of the clergy and senior politician (7,8)
CABINET MINISTER: This console could be a unit on which the controls of an electronic system are mounted or a housing for a television. Follow it with a member of the clergy. It took a while for the penny to drop on the meaning of console. In view of what happened on Jan ! this is topical . . .
27a Favour parking by river, free for a change (6)
PREFER: P(arking) followed by R(iver) and then an anagram (for a change) of FREE.
28a Visual artist capturing head of turbot, a large fish (5,3)
MANTA RAY: You need to know the name of a visual artist who was a follower of Dadaism and Surrealism who was perhaps best known for his photography. Into him insert T (head of Turbot) and the A from the clue. Fortunately for me this chap has turned up in crosswords before and I remembered him.
1d. Top end of market give support to this new coutourier, ultimately (1-5)
T-SHIRT: Take a T (end of markeT) and place it under (gives support in a down clue) an anagram (new) of THIS and then an R (coutourier ultimately). I’ve got one like this . . .
2d Out all night? I’d like to be! (9)
INSOMNIAC: Cryptic definition. Not round here you won’t. We have a curfew from 2200 to 0600!
3d Dull, expert on ketch (7)
PROSAIC: Start with an expert or professional and follow with a boat of the eastern Mediterranean.
4d Self-confidence of model entertaining one (5)
POISE: Start with a word for to model, not sit but the other one, and insert (entertaining) an I (one).
6d Hold check, primarily on nurse (7)
CONTEND: C (Check primarily) and then the ON from the clue and then a word meaning to nurse.
7d Topical variety show? Critical appraisal heard (5)
REVUE: This variety show sounds like (heard) a word for a critical appraisal, perhaps of said variety show., often followed by the word up.
8d Royalist travelling alone (8)
SOLITARY: Anagram (travelling) of ROYALIST.
14d Stubborn old boy expected to cross grass (8)
OBDURATE: Start with the usual old boy (2) and after him you need a word meaning expected (3) placed around (to cross) a word for to grass or betray (3).
16d Eccentric personality‘s reputation (9)
CHARACTER: Double definition.
17d Close deal over late drink (8)
NIGHTCAP: An old word meaning close or near followed by a deal, but it’s reversed (over).
19d Income from flat in Parisian street (7)
REVENUE: A word meaning flat inserted into (in) the French word for street.
22d Stout, last of beer, locked in room (6)
STURDY: Stout or well-built is an R (last of beeR) inserted into (locked in) a room.
25d In Manchester, I called Heather (5)
ERICA: A lurker hiding in (in) Manchester I called.
26a was my favourite for its excellent surface reading. Up there with it on the podium are 15a and 25d.
Quick crossword pun:
Top line: BUNGLE + OWES = BUNGALOWS
Bottom line: GNAW + TICKLE = NAUTICAL