Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29789
Hints and tips by Deep Threat
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BD Rating – Difficulty *** – Enjoyment ***
Good morning from South Staffs with a cloudy start to the day.
Today’s puzzle took me just into my *** time, but writing the hints for some of the clues took me longer than usual – there were several where getting the answer was not particularly difficult, but explaining the parsing was trickier. It will be interesting to see what others make of it.
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.
Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.
1a How some spell broomstick? (10)
WITCHCRAFT – A cryptic double definition to begin with. The ‘spell’ here is a verb for using magic, and the answer is a system which uses magic. Split the answer (5,5) and you have something which could describe a broomstick, again in the context of magic users.
6a Poles briefly following trendy locals? (4)
INNS – another word for ‘trendy’ followed by the abbreviations for the geographical poles. The locals are places, not people.
9a Doctor is required in absence of water (7)
DROUGHT – An abbreviation for ‘doctor’ followed by ‘is required’.
10a Electrical item used in garret pad Amazon sent round (7)
ADAPTER – Hidden in reverse (sent round) in the clue.
12a Explicit gesture about French from part of magazine? (7,6)
GRAPHIC DESIGN – Here we have another word for ‘explicit’ or ‘in pictures’ and another word for a sign, placed either side of the French for ‘from’. The definition is ‘part of magazine’, but could well, in my view, be better described as part of the production process of a magazine.
14a Ready for a rendezvous with it (2,2,4)
UP TO DATE – A phrase (2,2) meaning ‘ready for’, followed by a romantic rendezvous.
15a Watch, maybe offering bottle (6)
TICKER – The definition is Cockney rhyming slang for ‘courage’ or ‘nerve’, and could also be a part of the body which beats regularly, like a watch.
17a What’s still carried by nomadic alpacas from the East? (6)
PLACID – Hidden in reverse (from the East) in the clue.
19a All pearl clusters aligned (8)
PARALLEL – Anagram (clusters) of ALL PEARL.
21a Unenthusiastically using a fraction of 15, apparently (4-9)
HALF-HEARTEDLY – An adverb which suggests that only part of the answer to 15a is in use.
24a Oddly glum — so shy, dumpy plain Jane should do this? (5,2)
GUSSY UP – Alternate letters (oddly) of words 2 to 4 of the clue, giving some dated slang for ‘smarten up’.
25a Freezing oldie runs about, getting caught in two places (3-4)
ICE-COLD – Anagram (runs about) of OLDIE, with two separate insertions of the cricket abbreviation for ‘caught’.
26a Retreat from sierra getting web coverage (4)
NEST – Another word for ‘web’ wrapped round the letter represented by Sierra in the NATO alphabet
27a What I make from the Telegraph! (5,5)
PAPER MONEY – The ‘I’ here is the setter, who gets paid for his or her efforts by the Telegraph, and the answer could be a way of describing this pay.
1d Midweek, briefly takes the plunge (4)
WEDS – The answer is what someone who ‘takes the plunge’ is doing, and is also an abbreviation for a midweek day.
2d Conviction however is followed by time (7)
THOUGHT – Another word for ‘however’ followed by an abbreviation for Time.
3d Spaced out, also very arrogant (4,3,6)
HIGH AND MIGHTY – Put together another word for ‘spaced out (on drugs)’, another word for ‘also’, and a word like ‘very’ used as an intensifier.
4d Chatters restlessly, seeing some Turners? (8)
RATCHETS – Anagram (restlessly) of CHATTERS.
5d Reportedly genuine item that circulated in Paris (5)
FRANC – This word for the former French currency sounds like (reportedly) a word for ‘genuine’ or ‘open’.
7d Wally has choice split hairs (3-4)
NIT-PICK – Another word for the sort of person sometimes called a Wally, followed by another word for ‘choice’.
8d Season and turn over food (6,4)
SPRING ROLL – One of the seasons of the year, followed by what you do when you turn over in bed.
11d Nation’s ideal Kentucky whiskey, possibly containing Ecstasy (8,5)
AMERICAN DREAM – The common abbreviation for the drug Ecstasy is tucked into a phrase (8,4) which could describe Kentucky whiskey, or another alcoholic short made in the USA.
13d Start early — bound to go before hunt, e.g., set out (4,3,3)
JUMP THE GUN – Another word for ‘bound’ or ‘leap’, followed by an anagram (set out) of HUNT EG.
16d Appearing now and then in role before interval (4-4)
PART-TIME – Another word for a role on stage, followed by another word for ‘interval’ or ‘period’.
18d They show places salt-filled sea is rising (7)
ATLASES – SEA (from the clue) is wrapped round SALT (from the clue), then the result is reversed (rising).
20d Dancing won lady’s surrender (3,4)
LAY DOWN – Anagram (dancing) of WON LADY.
22d Principal record husband set in motorists’ club (5)
ALPHA – Put together the abbreviation for one of the varieties of gramophone record and an abbreviation for Husband, then wrap the acronym for one of the UK motoring organisations around the result.
23d For instance, going round Germany Yankee becomes tense (4)
EDGY – The Latin abbreviation for ‘for instance’ is wrapped round the IVR code for Germany, then the letter represented by Yankee in the NATO alphabet is added.
The Quick Crossword pun WILDE + HOARSE = WILD HORSE