DT 29629 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29629

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29629

Hints and tips by pommers

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Hola from the Vega Baja on a bright sunny morning.  It’s been a bit cold and wet here recently but yesterday normal service was resumed.  Perhaps spring is about to sprung.

Today’s crossword is pretty standard Monday fare, not too difficult and quite enjoyable.  Going through the acrosses I spotted the  J in 1a and the Z in 21a so I thought we might be in for a pangram but it’s not, it’s missing F, K and X.

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.

Across

1a           Start to judge an unlikely teen a US author of classics (4,6)
JANE AUSTEN:  Start with a J (start to Judge), then the AN from the clue and after that you need an anagram (unlikely) of TEEN A US and split it (4,6) to get the author of some classic novels.

6a           Shock given by singular tailless fish (4)
STUN:  S(ingular) followed by a fish without its last letter (tailless).  Makes a change for the word shock to have nothing to do with hair!

10a         Holiday home has criminal dropping in (5)
VILLA:  Another word for a criminal or rogue without the IN at the end (dropping IN).

11 & 26 Across   Film of tragedian I cut drastically (9)
EDUCATING RITA:  Anagram (drastically) of TRAGEDIAN I CUT.

12a         Football club  magazine (7)
ARSENAL:  The football club that were 3-0 down to West Ham yesterday but fought back to get a 3-3 draw is also the type of magazine where weapons are stored.  This is a bit of a chestnut but I like it.

13a         Country lover initially pointing at dazzling display (7)
PATRIOT:  P (initially Pointing) followed by the AT from the clue and a word for a dazzling display, of colour perhaps.

14a         Take article to mean what supporting actor may do in play? (5,3,4)
STEAL THE SHOW: A word for take without permission followed by a definite article and a word meaning to mean or demonstrate.

18a         Literary heroine, Amy, in short torrid novel (6,6)
LITTLE DORRIT: This is a novel by Charles Dickens and its heroine is a girl called Amy.  You need a word meaning short or small followed by an anagram (novel) of TORRID.  I don’t know if the novel is either short or torrid as I’ve never read it.

21a         Song about head of zoo working in one of the US states (7)
ARIZONA:  Take an operatic song and put it around a Z (head of Zoo) and a word meaning working or operating.

23a         Artist in salon, unfortunately one unplaced in competition (4-3)
ALSO RAN:  Anagram (unfortunately) of SALON with the usual artist inserted (in).

24a         Plant, rush, by spring (9)
SPEEDWELL: A word meaning rush, as in go fast, followed by a spring, not a spa but the other one.

25a         Saw a daughter getting silver, second in heptathlon (5)
ADAGE:  A from the clue followed by D(aughter), the chemical symbol for silver and finally an E (second in  hEptathlon).

26a         See 11 Across (4)

27a         Projectile that may make cathedral cleric shout out loud in the auditorium (10)
CANNONBALL:  This projectile sounds like (in the auditorium) a cathedral cleric and a word meaning the shout loudly.

Down

1d           Jack, over bottle, becomes jolly (6)
JOVIAL:  J(ack) followed by O(ver) and then a small bottle.

2d           Not one younger, would you believe? (2,4)
NO LESS:  Double definition I think.

3d           In spite of seeming very unlikely, American gets great chances (7,3,4)
AGAINST ALL ODDS: A charade of A(merican), a word meaning gets or earns, a word meaning great and finally the chances of something happening.

4d           Musicians in nick outlawed? Sounds like that (5,4)
STEEL BAND: A homophone clue (sounds like that).  The first word sounds like a word meaning to nick, as in pinch, and the second sounds like a word meaning outlawed.

5d           Provide witty remark after end of game (5)
EQUIP:  Start with an E (end of gamE) and follow with a witty remark.

7d           Perhaps towards the end of the day, mean to eat with the Italian (8)
TWILIGHT:  A word meaning mean or miserly is placed around (to eat) a W(ith) and the Italian definite article.

8d           One who likes working late near to empty well (5,3)
NIGHTOWL:  An old fashioned word for near followed by the TO from the clue and then WL (empty W(el)L).

9d           Isabella and Ferdinand, for instance, had these dreams about future success (7,2,5)
CASTLES IN SPAIN:  This phrase meaning daydreams describes some things that would be owned by a Spanish royal couple.  Here’s an example of the answer, it’s El Alcázar de Segovia.

15d         Sailor boy in waterproof stuff (9)
TARPAULIN: Start with a sailor, then a boy’s name and then the IN from the clue.

16d         Char holding top of strong detergent (8)
CLEANSER:  What your charlady is with an S (top of Strong) inserted (holding).

17d         Commanding attention with small spear (8)
STRIDENT:  S(mall) followed by a three pointed spear or nuclear missile.

19d         Navy member, nothing without leader (6)
ARMADA:  This is the Spanish word for the navy and it’s a member, as in a limb, followed by the Spanish word for nothing without its first letter (without leader).

20d         Amazing change in Lauren (6)
UNREAL:  Anagram (change in) of LAUREN.

22d         Scene of intense activity within McLaren Automotive (5)
ARENA:  A lurker hiding in (within) the last two words.

I think 25a is favourite today with 9d and 27a on the podium.


Quick crossword puns:

Top line:          FOUGHT     +     HELLER     =     FORETELLER

Bottom line:    TAPPED     +     ANSWER     =     TAP DANCER

129 comments on “DT 29629
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  1. I hadn’t heard of the phrase in 9d but wrote it in as it seemed likely. Enjoyed the neat anagram in 1a. 14a and 4d were obvious but I wasn’t sure if they were purely cryptic or if I was missing something. Thanks to Pommers for hints and the setter for a pleasant enough **/** start to the week.

      1. Yes – thanks Stephen – the full extent of my dimness sadly became clear when I read the hints! My only solace is that my feeble brain actually produced the answers, albeit somewhat shielding (a much overused word these days) their full raison d’être.

  2. Monday is never going to be my favourite puzzle of the week, but this was light and good fun.
    14&27a plus 4d are on the podium with a special mention to 13a, conspicuous by their absence in our “national” broadcaster.
    1.5/3*
    Many thanks to Campbell and to Pommers for the fun.

  3. There was quite a bit of General Knowledge needed for today’s puzzle, so, whilst it suited me, opinions may vary. I found the clues absorbing, without being overly challenging and the whole thing was quite enjoyable (1.5*/3.5*). The best clues, for me, were the long ones, craftily constructed 3d and 18a. Many thanks to Pommers for the hints and to the compiler

  4. Light and quite the delight. Re 18a: to answer pommers’ comment, LD is neither short nor torrid; my students called it BD, usually with an expletive between the B and D. But it is one of CD’s greatest, and I Ioved teaching it. Laughed out loud with 27a, especially as the (potential) image became riotously funny, and it’s my COTD. Thanks to pommers for the review and to Campbell for the pleasure. ** / ****

    1. That’s how a friend of mine who studied English at Uni used to describe LD, always brought a smile to my face. It’s a hefty tome indeed

    2. I loved Dickens. We did the usual Oliver Twist and David Copperfield in school, but I decided in my 20s to read the rest, which I did, and LD was right up there amongst my faves. For some reason I never got on with Martin Chuzzlewit.

      1. Not me, I hated Dickens. I found him totally depressing, and so glad I didn’t live at that time. Life was so tough, unless you were filthy rich,

      2. Loved Dickens, read them all from cover to cover, twice. No one has ever come close to writing English prose like Dickens.

  5. Enjoyable start to the crosswordy week (“No! No! The weeks starts on Sunday” “Yeah ok, whatevs”)

    Went out for a lovely walk with H yesterday – the first time she has been able to do so since Christmas Day (she had an op). After three months of being confined, she found the fresh air and open vistas almost overwhelming (in the best possible, uplifting way).

    Today’s crossword soundtrack: Kate Bush – Aerial

    Thanks to Campbell and pommers amidst his sand dunes.

    1. P.S. – still working my way through the orange juice with bits in it.
      New delivery expected tomorrow; I shall write a letter to Her Majesty The Queen if the orange juice has these unwanted ‘bits’ in it once again. No man should have to endure such torment.

      1. I am impresses by your stoic thrift which has caused you to consume the offending beverage. It could be worse, imagine if they had delivered San Izal as an alternative to Andrex.

      2. I don’t know what all the fuss is about T. As I told you, they put hairs on your chest and prove that it is made from real oranges. Man up. I always have the green top WithBits and look at me!

      3. You can hand it back if you don’t want it and they’ll refund it. My tub of fresh double cream was replaced with Elmlea artificial cream on Saturday so it had to go back.

    2. Pleased H is starting to be able to do “normal” things ( what is normal these days after the statements on masks & social distancing over the weekend) again.
      Hope the progress continues.
      Lola next, fingers crossed.

  6. An easy introduction to the puzzle week. **/*** Quite a lot of general knowledge but none of it particularly obscure. Favourite 27a. My last one in. Thanks to all.

  7. As usual for a Monday, this was fairly straightforward, with plenty of fun to be had and nothing too challenging. I particularly enjoyed 10a and 16d.

    My thanks to Campbell and pommers.

  8. As enjoyable as ever for a Campbell on Monday – **/****.
    No standout favourites, but I did like 10a and 9d.
    Thanks to Campbell and pommers.

  9. All done and dusted in very short order this morning although I was unfamiliar with 9d – more used to it ending ‘in the air’. Must look up the derivation.
    The nicely constructed 25a was my favourite and 27a raised a smile.

    Thanks to Campbell and to pommers for the review.
    PS If anyone’s looking for another puzzle, our own Shabbo is appearing in the Independent today – free to access and most enjoyable.

    1. Jane, I don’t know how far back the phrase actually goes, but Eddie Fisher, Eydie Gorme, and Vera Lynn, among others, recorded ‘Back in Your Own Backyard’, whose lyrics contain “You’ll see your castles in Spain”. I do remember the Fisher version, but I can also remember, as a child, building sand ‘castles in Spain’ at the local Carolina beach–back in the 40s.

      1. I’ve done some investigoogling but there doesn’t seem to be a definitive answer – plenty of possible suggestions but nothing more.

        1. I found this via Google, no idea if it’s definitive or not:

          The phrase to build castles in the air, or in Spain, means to form unattainable projects.

          While castles in the air is self-explanatory, castles in Spain requires some elucidation.

          It first appeared in The Romaunt of the Rose, a partial translation into Middle English, made in the time of the English poet Geoffrey Chaucer (circa 1342-1400), of Le Roman de la rose:

          (1845 edition)
          Thou shalt make castles than in Spaine,
          And dreame of joy, all but in vaine,
          And thee delighten of right nought,
          While thou so slumbrest in that thought,
          That is so sweete and delitable*,
          For which in sooth n’is but a fable.

  10. A very enjoyable start to the week, after last Monday’s challenge this was a nice return to standard fare which I managed to complete at a leisurely pace over an excellent coffee and jaffa cake bar.

    Particularly enjoyed 14a, 27a and 4d. I’d normally associate the expression in 9d to end with “…the air” rather than the country but there you go.

    Many thanks Campbell and Pommers!

  11. Back to benevolence after a recent spin of trickier Monday offerings. Light & breezy but thoroughly enjoyable & all over in short order & with no parsing concerns & with a nice smattering of artsy clues. No real favourites but like RD 27a conjured up a comical image.
    With thanks to Campbell & to Pommers

    1. 27a did, but I haven’t made that comment yet. I’m worried you can read my mind :wacko:

      Ah, no! I see you meant RC.

  12. I have not been a fan of Mondays of late. Started badly by not getting either 1a or 1d always a bad omen for me. However after getting just a few in the top half the remainder fell very quickly. I have not read any Dickens or Jane Austen but the answers were quickly determined almost too quickly. Thanks for the hints although not needed on this occasion. COD 18a. **/****

  13. 3*/3*. I found this a bit trickier than normal for a Monday but good fun as always.

    Like pommers, I’m not entirely convinced by 2d. 27a raised a smile and gets my vote as favourite.

    Many thanks to Campbell and to pommers.

  14. I’m not very keen on anagrams of films. There are so many and there was nothing in 11a to help us rearrange the letters. A little hint would have been helpful.
    Ia was a nice bit of misdirection, especially after 4a in the Quickie. 18a was what it had to be but I made life difficult for myself by having “the” instead of “all” in 3d
    All in all, a pleasant start to the week as we go into the second year of Covid. How dismal is that!

  15. I couldn’t go on a rant about this one as I did yesterday. All good fun and a pleasure to solve. Thanks to Campbell and to Pommers. I also thought at one point that it was going to be a pangram, but it was not to be.

  16. A bit too much literary GK for my tastes. I didn’t know the expression at 9d ( ” – in the sky ” is my recollection).

    Other than that, completed in *** time with 7d as my COTD.

    Thanks to the compiler and Pommers.

  17. What a relief after yesterdays absolute horror. An excellent puzzle to my mind with lots of interesting clues.
    A good start to the week.
    By the way to whomsoever commented yesterday that they were impressed that my granddaughter was doing the cryptic puzzle, she is furious as she is 28 and has a 2/1 in English from Durham University!
    Thx all
    **/****

      1. It’s easy to misjudge people’s ages. I once asked a client what her three children did for a living. She replied that they they were all retired.

        1. It can work the other way round. I once asked a client if she would mind me popping round with some clothes my 7 year old daughter had grown out of. She was caring for her granddaughter aged 5. She replied that it would be very nice but surely I meant my granddaughter. I was not offended as she was accustomed to girls starting their families at 15 rather than 35, although it did cause me to look in the mirror!

        2. It can work the other way. When I worked in Blackpool a patient came in – a young woman of about 26 with an 11 year old girl and a baby. I congratulated her on her new baby. She looked at me strangely and told me she was the grandmother. The 11 year old girl was the mother.

    1. Perhaps like me, the people who commented have granddaughters who are a lot younger than yours. I’d be very impressed if our 2 1/2 year old Lucie could do a cryptic crossword, although I do hope to eventually get back to Northern Ireland to continuing teaching 7 1/2 old Alfie to solve them

      1. Our elder daughter (the Elder Lamb) can’t even do a quick crossword – she’s forty-two and a Doctor of Analytical Chemistry, Principal Research Scientist at the National Physical Laboratory and has a Chair at Imperial College – I think some people are just not crossword “material”. As she always says to me, “Honestly Mum, I’m just good at other things”!

    2. Brian
      My apologies to your daughter. I had not taken you as someone old enough to have a granddaughter of 28. Still impressed though as there are not many younger solvers coming along. The recent survey suggesting they are in the significant minority.
      I don’t know if I have now made you furious or flattered. If the former my apologies to you too.

      1. Exactly LrOK, Brian should take it as a compliment that we all thought him a young grandad! But then Brian is always surprising us, in a nice way. I was pleased yesterday when my daughter told me that at 11am every morning the working at home people Zoom together and do the Gaudrian crossword! I’ve never known her show an interest before.

  18. A very enjoyable puzzle to start the week. Like JB, I put “the” in 3d, which held me up a bit with 18a. I liked 14a and the lego clue at 15d but like others 27a is my COTD because of the humourous image in conjures. It took me a while to see the parsing of 7d but realised in the end that it was quite clever.

    Many thanks to Campbell for the challenge and to pommers for the hints.

  19. About average Campbell difficulty for me. Like some others my LOI, 9d new to me & needed e help to confirm.
    2d not to my taste but otherwise I quite enjoyed it. ** / *** with 25a my COTD.
    Thanks to Campbell & pommers for the review.
    Back to amending my will provisions that I have to finish. Amazingly there are differences between the requirements of English & Welsh law and the Scottish.

    1. Nothing to do with wills, LROK but I am filling in an order form for a shop in Australia. I’m arranging for them to deliver a present to our daughter who lives in Melbourne. As it is alcoholic I had to tick the following box.

      “I am over 18 and getting older.” :scratch:

      1. Talking of documents, there were quite a few boxes on the census form that made me laugh. Why do they need to know half of it?

          1. I managed to get ‘Publican, getting folk pi**ed’ into the census. Probably the first time I have told the truth about my occupation. I was a freelance astronaut twenty years ago and a Rolf Harris impersonator last time round

            1. I just wonder if all the answers get read & put onto a database. I must have been around for the last census but can’t remember a thing about it.
              If they do its a wonder they didn’t imprison you last time around MP!

              1. I don’t think my husband would be amused about a few of the things I said about him but I kept my own replies straight in more ways than one

            2. I knew you would put something like that in the occupation box! I was comparing notes with my brother last night and he contemplated putting gigolo. At 66, he wasn’t sure he would be believed.

              1. Why did the census ask for O levels? Anyone older than me took School Certificate . The other thing was that they didn’t ask where I was. I suppose I’m listed at home despite the fact that, at the moment, I’m nowhere near it!

                1. I have no idea what my exam results were. We were supposed to go back to school to pick them up but having left I wasn’t going anywhere near the place. Never did. Never have. Never will

                2. Best they could do would be give the nearest equivalent. There will be relatively few as they will have been before 1935 and a very small percentage of children in England went beyond elementary education. An even smaller percentage went to University.

      2. Perhaps an example of Aussie humour. Doesn’t seem to specify 18 years so not very useful!

        Will thing was very surprised to learn in Scotland we are legally obliged to make bequests to all children even if a child has told us (in writing) never to contact them again.

        How is Hudson? We think Biggles got a touch of sand colic last week so no more ball games on the beach or much swimming in the sea

        1. We had all sorts of hoops to go through changing our wills when DD1 was diagnosed with early onset dementia. And frankly, wills can be challenged and overturned – spend it all on gin.

          1. DG that must have been traumatic to say the least.
            Only too aware it can be challenged & we don’t what the “lost child” is capable of. So far as our current knowledge of them, or our grandchildren, is concerned we could be making a bequest to any adult in the UK. That is what concerns me most.

            1. That is also heartbreaking LrOK. I cannot imagine it. I have typed several sentences and deleted them all.
              Some things you cannot put into words.

              1. Oh, DG. an incapacitated daughter is SO distressing. It’s bad enough that mine plus family lives abroad but at least we can Skype. I must count my blessings.
                On the plus side :How are you health wise? I notice you are taking walks. Has the knee properly healed? I wonder, when BD started this brilliant site, he realised just how personal we would get!

          2. A friend of us died prematurely in Spain whilst owning properties in England Belgium and Spain. It took years to sort out as different laws applied to each property. Happily in England you can leave to whomsoever you wish although it is sensible to add reasons why, for example, you have excluded a family member who on the face of it is or could be a dependant. It used to be said that Solicitors rubbed their hands with glee when acting on an intestacy or, even better, a home made will.

        2. Hudson is fine and he sends Biggles his best. Not his best bones, of course, just his best. As for wills, we only have the one daughter so all is fairly straightforward.

        3. Presumably there’s no instruction of equality, your bequest could (and should) be for 1p and still obey the rules.

          1. Oh yes there is M. There is a minimum specified percentage depending on how many children. Anything below that is open to challenge.
            We begrudge leaving him even 1p for the heartbreak he has caused effectively preventing us ever seeing or knowing our (only) grandchildren.

            1. I wonder if there is a legal loophole, particularly as you have it in writing that he wishes to “divorce” you? Where were these people’s brains when that law was passed? I feel so sorry for you both.

    2. It is not in fact amazing. Scottish law is built on completely different foundations. Many countries adopted our laws but Scotland was not one of them.

  20. I was another who initially put THE as the middle word in 3d, but fortunately I realised the error of my ways quite quickly.
    A most enjoyable start to the week.
    Thanks to Campbell and Pommers.
    PS – I enjoyed the bottom line pun in the Concise as well!

  21. I thought this was easier than recent Monday offerings **/***. Although more GK than I prefer, there was nothing too obscure.
    Had to give up on the first word of 9d (could only think of “partner”), not a phrase I have heard before.
    Clear favourite was 27a which made me laugh.

  22. No sweat in this gentle opening to the cruciverbal week but there was just enough challenge and plenty of lighthearted moments. 3d was Fav. Thank you Campbell and pommers. Now off to enjoy a constitutional in beautiful W. Sussex sunshine.

  23. A nice shoe in to the new week and quite literary if you include the quickie, which always gives us more angst than any. Colour (5) – bah, could be anything! Thanks to Campbell and Pommers and everyone who has made a comment which has helped to pass half an hour as an excuse not to get in my studio and tidy it up! I was not convinced by 2d and I amazed at the number of people who had not heard of the Iberian palaces. Don’t any of you remember the lyrics of Far Away Places with Strange Sounding Names?

    1. DG
      That song was 1948! I just about recall the song now you mention it but that it mentioned 9d not a clue.

      1. I long for the day I can get under way and look for those Castles in Spain.
        They call me a dreamer, well maybe I am, but I know that I’m yearning to see
        Those far away places with the strange sounding names, that are calling, calling me.
        Now isn’t that amazing. I cannot remember what we had for lunch yesterday, but my father bought a smart new record player and we went out and
        bought a load of records, mostly classical but my mother sang and this was, I believe, Perry Como. We also had the Singing Nun, Dominique!
        (It may be under weigh, as in weighing anchor! I really don’t know)

        1. You might not be able to remember what you had for lunch, but if I don’t write down the name of our friendly puzzle solver at the top of my print out, by the time I have solved the puzzle and put in my comment, I have quite forgotten who to thank. And these days it’s a long scroll back up to the top 😊.

        2. I remember it well! The Singing Nun was a little later I think? Remember Daisy, we’re just a little older than most of ’em here.

    2. Ah yes, DG: That’s the one I was trying to remember when Back in Your Own Backyard blocked it–my memory, that is. We had an old 78 RPM recording of Dinah Shore singing Far Away Places, but I think it was the Bing Crosby version that stayed on the American Hit Parade for what seemed like years. I was 10 years old when Crosby’s was released.

      1. “I start gettin’ restless whenever I hear / The whistle of a train. / I pray for the day I can get underway / And look for those castles in Spain.”

  24. A nice gentle puzzle to start of the non work week for me. **/****
    Favourite clues include 1a, 14a, 18a, 24a & 8d with winner 14a

    Thanks to Campbell and Pommers

  25. Very straightforward start to the week. Lovely sunshine here again, so back out to the garden!
    Thanks to both

  26. Nothing much to test the little grey cells today, I didn’t do well yesterday so today a bit of a bonus. Favourites 27a and 9d.
    Thanks to Pommers and Campbell.

  27. I found it difficult to get a toe hold, and then suddenly I was off and running. I also was not familiar with 9d, and was stuck on castles in the sky which obviously did not fit. We love almost all of Michael Caine’s movies, particularly 11a. I say most, as he did make a few flops, which he freely admits in his memoirs, he seldom turned down a work offer. Thanks to Campbell and Pommers.

  28. Well, Mr. Campbell, that’s more like it, thank you, thank you, thank you! This was a joy to solve, rarely can I solve without any help, if only to check the spelling.
    Loved it all but 27a made me laugh.
    Thanks for the fun, Campbell, and pommers for the hints and pics. I wasn’t familiar with that speedwell, I recall a little blue flower, must google!

      1. Yes, I did a bit of googling. There is a ground cover with a little blue flower as well. One wonders how these plants get their name when they are so diverse. The Euphorbia family goes from something that looks like cactus to things like the poinsettia.

  29. Unlike the majority I found this quite tricky 🤔 ***/*** My Favourites were 27a & 5d 😃 Thanks to Pommers and to Campbell

  30. If any of you are ever in the area of Segovia I can recommend a look at the castle in the illustration of 9d. It really does look like a fairytale castle.

  31. I enjoyed this and finished it but I thought that 19d should have some indication in the clue that the word for nothing was in a foreign language. If the rest of the wordplay was not so easy there would have been a lot of possibilities to trawl through. I’m surprised also that no one has mentioned, “Castles made of sand”, by Hendrix as a further distraction for 9D. Thanks to the for the hints and to the setter.

  32. After a few clues I was on pangram alert but it wasn’t to be. I enjoyed this, fairly straight forward although the films and literary references had me a bit worried until some checkers appeared.

    3d was my favourite.

    Thanks to today’s setter and Pommers.

  33. I never find Campbell easy – I never used to find Rufus crosswords easy (also Mondays for those who don’t remember) – must be something about Mondays.
    This one certainly had its moments but got there in the end.
    I must have heard of 9d because the answer came to me fairly quickly.
    Everything else has already been said so thanks to Campbell and to pommers.
    I’ve been in the garden all day so a bit worn out and haven’t even looked at yesterday’s crossword or today’s Rookie – it’s quite hard not to be outside now that the weather is a bit better and there’s so much to do outside but I’m getting crossword withdrawal symptoms now . . . .

      1. As the football chant goes
        “There’s only one Kath reviewer” etc
        Apologies Kath I know you don’t like football.
        Please don’t take this the wrong way, either of you, but how could anyone think there could be another Kath?

        1. I did enough joint blogs with the lady to have got to know her quite well. Remember “Archie and Mehitabel” as well as the ones under our own names?

        2. I’ve been in the garden a lot both yesterday and today, Kath. I have a large white Buddleia that needed pruning. Watching Monty Don prune his Buddlleia on Friday’s Gardener’s world, together with the lovely weather, got me started. The downside was cutting up all the prunings so that they would go in the garden waste bin.

  34. Once i had a few checkers I got 9d quickly, but only because it is a very common French expression for ‘unrealisable dreams’.Held up with 3D since I erroneously put ‘THE’ for the middle word. Otherwise I enjoyed the literary and other GK. Great fun. ***/****

  35. Very enjoyable. Not keen on 2d. Favourites 27a and and 4 5 7 9 and 15d. NE was last corner in. Thanks Campbell and Pommers for confirming one or two of the parsings.

  36. Quite an enjoyable solve although I did fall into “the” trap with 3d but soon saw the error of my ways. Many thanks to the setter and Pommers.

    I remember staying at the Parador in Segovia back in 1983 it had quite a modern reception area and as I was look around there was the most terrible crashing noise. My father-in-law had walked slap bang into an internal plate glass partition. We made quite a bloodied entrance! He was a real gentlemen in every sense of the word but he did have a very painful nose. By

  37. I really don’t get on with Campbell puzzles…yesterday’s “quirky” Dada was much easier for me! Oh well, keep on trying.
    Thanks to Pommers and Campbell

  38. Maybe all the people that found this straightforward could explain 2d… 😉

    Other than 2d a very enjoyable solve.

    Favourite clue was 9d because I had actually heard the expression before.

    1. Re 2d as Pommers says it’s a double definition, the first example self explanatory, the second used to express something is surprising or impressive.
      “He owns three cars, all Jaguars no less” (would you believe)

    2. You could say “he drove his car across the putting green, no less” (heathen), or not one younger = no less. 2 meanings of the same phrase. Double definition is all I can make of it.

    3. Thanks for the responses, but it was the not one younger bit that was throwing me. I’ve seen an explanation of this elsewhere and still seems a bit strange to me.

  39. Straightforward until it wasn’t. Never heard of the couple in 9d so had to Google them, from that I guessed the the answer and had to Google that that as I’d never heard of the phrase. Easy enough if you happen to be am expert on 15th century Spanish monarchs and are old enough to have heard a phrase that seems to have fallen out of use before I was born. Never heard of the north American/Spanish word meaning nothing so had to put the last 3 letters in a crossword solver to parse it and I didn’t know 18a’s name was Amy so had to Google that too, but at least I’d heard of her. Apart from that no complaints. Favourite was 24a as it’s alternative name is my girlfriend’s given name so I knew that. Thanks to Campbell and Pommers.

  40. Never heard of 9d which was not gettable from the wordplay. Have heard of the same ‘in the air’ though.
    Other than that, a fairly straightforward Monday puzzle, though 11a was enumerated incorrectly online.
    Thanks both.

  41. Very pleasant Monday solve in ** time. Very rare for me to complete at one sitting but this one fell out nicely, although needed help to understand 19d. My Spanish is a bit on the weak side (along with French, Italian and German).

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