Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29855
Hints and tips by Deep Threat
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ***
Good morning from South Staffs where the sun is attempting an occasional appearance through the clouds.
I completed today’s puzzle quite quickly, hence the ** marking, but probably didn’t fully parse one or two clues until I was writing these hints, so perhaps another * should be added.
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 Little goldfinch regularly guarded by parent (7)
MODICUM – Alternate letters (regularly) of gOlDfInCh, with a female parent wrapped round the result.
5a Court frees at last silly opportunist (7)
CHANCER – Remove the final letter of sillY from the name of the division of the High Court which was lampooned in Bleak House.
“Never can there come fog too thick, never can there come mud and mire too deep, to assort with the groping and floundering condition which this High Court of Chancery, most pestilent of hoary sinners, holds this day in the sight of heaven and earth.”
9a Complete change of opinion concerning performer (5-4)
ABOUT-TURN – Another word for ‘concerning’, followed by a word for a performer or his/her act on the variety stage.
10a Text Mark about visiting Tom? (5)
CARET – The Latin word for ‘about’ or ‘concerning’ is inserted into a creature whose male is often known as Tom. The answer is a proofreader’s mark indicating an omission, and its name is the Latin word for ‘is lacking’.
11a Inverted box, essential to trap rodent (7)
MUSKRAT – Reverse (inverted) the box which Harrison Ford and others were pursuing when it was lost in the 1980s film. Then insert the result into another word for ‘essential’ (as in ‘that’s a —-‘).
12a Oriental flower fills small space (7)
EASTERN – The smaller space used by printers is wrapped round a flower such as a Michaelmas Daisy.
13a US President, loser with vote collapsing (9)
ROOSEVELT – Anagram (collapsing) of LOSER and VOTE.
16a Believe compliance is occasionally ignored (5)
OPINE – Alternate letters (occasionally ignored) of the second word of the clue.
17a Satisfied about books for choral composition (5)
MOTET – Another word for ‘satisfied’ or ‘achieved (a target)’ is wrapped round the letters denoting one of the sets of books of the Bible.
18a American abandons broken eBay-traded toy (5,4)
TEDDY BEAR – Anagram (broken) of EB(a)Y TRADED, without one of the abbreviations for American.
21a Geordie great inspiring British sport (7)
NETBALL – The geographical indication of where Geordies are to be found, followed by another word for ‘great (of height)’ wrapped round British.
22a Giving autographs, player team has acquired (7)
SIGNING – Double definition: the act of giving autographs; or a term used, especially in football, to denote a newly acquired player, referencing the contract that the player has attached his or her autograph to.
25a Hug cold student having drunk gin (5)
CLING – Put together an abbreviation for Cold, the usual letter indicating a student or learner, and an anagram (drunk) of GIN.
26a Getting on for ninety perhaps? (9)
EUPHEMISM – This is a definition by example. If you describe someone of ninety as ‘getting on’ rather than ‘very old’, you are using the answer.
27a Extremely brave team succeeded as well (7)
BESIDES – Put together the outside letters (extremely) of BravE, another word for a sports team, and the abbreviation for Succeeded.
28a Canon agonising to maintain figure (7)
NONAGON – A geometrical figure is hidden in the clue.
1d Army man runs country (7)
MYANMAR – Anagram (runs) of ARMY MAN. Given the state of that country, the clue is also an all-in-one.
2d Refuse sleep when crossing river (5)
DROSS – Another word for ‘sleep (rough)’ wrapped round an abbreviation for River.
3d Provide food, grub Pole is lacking (5)
CATER – Start with the grub which will turn into a butterfly or moth, then remove the word for ‘pole’ or ‘column’ to get the answer.
4d Police officer that is after rise (7)
MOUNTIE – A rise in the ground followed by the Latin abbreviation for ‘that is’, giving us the familiar name of a North American police officer who , by repute, will ‘always get his/her/their man/person of indeterminate gender’.
5d Arrogance from Tory-held constituency reportedly (7)
CONCEIT – One of the usual short forms of Conservative, followed by a homophone (reportedly) of another word used to describe a Parliamentary constituency.
6d Additional individual abetting criminal (9)
ACCESSORY – Double definition: an additional piece of kit; or someone guilty of abetting a criminal before or after the fact of the offence.
7d Time Clare trained to be nun (9)
CARMELITE – Anagram (trained of TIME CLARE.
8d Defensive unit errors somewhat upset followers (7)
RETINUE – Hidden in reverse (somewhat upset) in the clue.
14d Leaves behind old-fashioned sports kits (9)
OUTSTRIPS – Another word for ‘old-fashioned’ or ‘not in fashion’, followed by another word for the sports kits worn by teams.
15d Sadly sergeant and daughter becoming alienated (9)
ESTRANGED – Anagram (sadly) of SERGEANT, followed by an abbreviation for Daughter.
17d Taxi, iconic vehicle around Bristol originally (7)
MINICAB – Put together an iconic small car first made4 in the 1950s, the Latin abbreviation for ‘around’ or ‘about’, and the first letter (originally) of Bristol.
18d Bank staff, they cannot keep secrets? (7)
TELLERS – The people who count out cash in a bank could also be people who don’t withhold information or gossip.
19d Stand up floppy cleaning implement (7)
DUSTPAN – anagram (floppy) of STAND UP.
20d Detailed army unit diet programme (7)
REGIMEN – Remove the final letter (de-tailed) of an army unit.
23d Naive politician (5)
GREEN – Double definition (or is it only one?!). someone who is naïve or inexperienced; or an irritating, sanctimonious politician who wants to take us back to the Middle Ages.
24d Omitting small line carving cake decoration (5)
ICING – Remove the abbreviations for Small and Line from the front of a word for ‘carving’.
The Quick Crossword pun REIGN + BEAU = RAINBOW