Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29665
Hints and tips by pommers
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ****
Hola from the Vega Baja on a very pleasant spring morning. Sunny, light breeze and forecast for 23°C this afternoon. What more could one ask for?
The puzzle’s a pretty normal Monday affair with quite a few gimmes to get you a start and then a few with much more complicated wordplay to get you exercising the grey matter. Overall I enjoyed it.
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 Quiet formal announcement following end of weather forecast (7)
PREDICT: Start with the letter meaning quiet in musical notation and an R (end of weatheR) and following that put a formal announcement or order.
7a Finished first in that Open? (5)
OVERT: A word meaning finished followed by T (first in That).
9a Conservative directly opposed (6)
SQUARE: Double definition.
10a Disciplinarian‘s point in trading centre (8)
MARTINET: The point or prong of a fork is inserted into (in) a word for a trading centre or market. I spent too long thinking the point would be a compass point, d’oh!
11a Held back in reserve, and groomed (10)
RESTRAINED: Abbreviation of reserved followed by a word meaning groomed as in coached.
14a Notices form provided is about European father (10,3)
CLASSIFIED ADS: Start with a word for form or type and then a two letter word meaning provided. After that you need the IS from the clue placed around (about) an E(uropean) and a three letter word for your father. Split that lot (19,3) and there you go.
16a Get through? I don’t know (4)
PASS: Double definition. It’s what you say if you’re on Mastermind and don’t know the answer.
17a Vexatious English gang returned to squeeze different ones (10)
BOTHERSOME: E(nglish) and a gang or unruly group (3) reversed (returned) and placed around (to squeeze) a word meaning different ones (6). Hands up all those who, like me, thought it would be the English gang reversed around an anagram (different) of ONES.
19a Singer in pub, Italian individual (8)
BARITONE: One of the usual words for a pub followed by the two letters for Italian vermouth and finally a word for individual or single.
20a Just son given hint (6)
SIMPLY: Just as in merely. It’s an S(on) followed by a word meaning to hint.
22a Live way out guarding head of state (5)
EXIST: The way out placed around (guarding) an S (head of State). I told you there are some gimmes!
1d Dairy product produced by fine Greek character (4)
FETA: This dairy product may well be made by a Greek as it’s a Greek cheese. It’s F(ine) followed by a letter from the Greek alphabet. Tasty stuff. I shall have some on my salad tonight.
2d How crabs move, and fish among rocks (8)
SIDEWAYS: Crosswordland’s popular fish placed inside (among) a word for rocks as in wobbles.
4d Bribes had worked, protecting knight in prison (6,4)
BEHIND BARS: Anagram (worked) of BRIBES HAD placed around (protecting) the letter for knight in chess notation.
5d Resentment of crown voiced (5)
PIQUE: Sounds like (voiced) a word for crown as in top.
6d Footman is out and about just after that in play (5,2,6)
TIMON OF ATHENS: First of all you need an anagram (out) of FOOTMAN IS and then you need to put it around (about) a word meaning just after that to get a play by Shakespeare.
8d Mother lost small flask (7)
THERMOS: Anagram (lost) of MOTHER followed by S(mall).
12d Drink first drop of malt whisky, say, for morale (4,6)
TEAM SPIRIT: A hot drink traditionally taken in the afternoon followed by M (first drop of Malt) and then what whisky is an example of (say).
14d Farce enjoyed involving artist breaking into church (7)
CHARADE: This is one of those Russian doll clues. You need to start with a word for enjoyed, as in owned, and insert (involving) the usual artist. Then that lot is inserted (breaking into) two letters for the Church of England.
15d Service still good around noon (8)
EVENSONG: A phrase (4,2) meaning still or nevertheless and a G(ood) placed around an N(oon).
17d Wasted opening in brilliant game (6)
BLOTTO: Wasted as in drunk. B (opening in Brilliant) followed by a game also called housey-housey.
18d Guys eating most of blue fruit (5)
MELON: Some guys or chaps placed around (eating) all but the last letter (most of) a word for blue or depressed.
21d Atmosphere caused by raising catastrophe (4)
MOOD: Reverse (raising in a down clue) a word meaning catastrophe or death.
I think 16a is favourite because it gave me the excuse to include the Eric and Ernie sketch. Also on the podium are 12d and 13a.
Quick crossword pun, top line: CLIMB + AXIS = CLIMAXES
Quick crossword pun, bottom line: SHOW + FURZE = CHAUFFEURS