DT 29873 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29873

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29873

A full review by Rahmat Ali

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This puzzle was published on 1st Jan 2022

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Greetings from Kolkata. An amicable and straightforward Saturday puzzle from Chalicea that I enjoyed solving and thereafter writing a review of the same for your kind perusal and significant comments.

Mainsail, the answer to the clue of 24a enticed me to visit the net to know more about the other parts of the propulsion system for boats and some other sailing vessels. I found that such a system has at least one mast located in the longitudinal midplane of the boat and a jib that is controlled by sheets and secured to the head of the mast. Two mainsails rove on two shrouds that extend obliquely between the head portion of the mast and points of connection to a deck of the boat, situated on both sides of the mast and arranged each on a boom mounted on one of those shrouds. Unlike the conventional set of sails having a single mainsail and a jib, the propulsion system has a greater sail surface and the sail thrust is greater with the same wind. When sailing before the wind, the sail surface has its centre of propulsion located on the boat axis that makes the sail more stable and secured and devoid of any deviation of the bow, rightward or leftward.

Again, I gathered a lot of information about Hawaii, the answer to the clue of 22d, some of which were not known to me till date. Hawaii is located in the Pacific Ocean, about 2,000 miles from the mainland of the United States. It is the only state outside North America, the only state that is an archipelago and the only state that is in the tropics. It is the fourth and last state of the US that was once an independent country; the other three being Texas, Vermont and California. It has the largest Buddhist population by percentage, amounting to 8 per cent of the state’s population. Although the cost of living varies significantly from one state to the next, Hawaii, the last state to join the union on August 21, 1959 and presently the third-wealthiest state, ranked in 2021 as the most expensive state to live in in that country.

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1a    Technocrat ordered military garment (6,4)
TRENCH COAT: An anagram (ordered) of TECHNOCRAT guides to the definition of a variety of coat made of waterproof heavy-duty fabric, originally developed for British Army officers before WWI and becoming popular while used in the trenches

6a    Reportedly study grass (4)
REED: READ (study) as a homophone heard by the audience (reportedly) takes to the definition of a tall stiff hard-culmed marsh or water grass of various kinds, especially Phragmites communis

8a    Unusually heartless, collecting proof of debts in a horrible manner (8)
ODIOUSLY: In a way that is different to what is expected or OD[D]LY (unusually) without the heart or central letter (heartless) taking in (collecting) signed slips of paper or other documents acknowledging debt, especially of money or IOUS (proof of debts), leading to the definition of an adverb meaning in a gruesome or repulsive manner

9a    Some manure I’m against turning over is more tainted (6)
GAMIER: Part of or hidden inside (some) manuRE I’M AGainst coming from the opposite direction (turning over) as a reversal in the across clue takes to the definition of an adjective in the comparative degree meaning more scandalous, corrupt or disreputable

10a    Press cold youth resistant to change (8)
IRONCLAD: A charade of IRON (press) as to smooth clothes, sheets etc with an iron, C (cold) as abbreviation for cold and LAD (youth) as a young man guides to the definition of an adjective meaning impossible to contradict, weaken or charge

11a    Fragile revolutionary trap backfiring (6)
TENDER: A combo of a charade of RED (revolutionary) as a person who favours sweeping changes, variously applied to radical, republican, socialist, communist etc and NET (trap) as a plan to catch someone or something, going backwards (backfiring) as a reversal in the across clue, arriving at the definition of an adjective meaning soft or delicate

12a    Oscar accepted by that woman in Oxford? (4)
SHOE: O (Oscar) as the letter represented by Oscar in the NATO phonetic alphabet embraced (accepted) by SHE (that woman) as a pronoun of the third person singular used to refer to a woman, leading to the definition of a type of either of the pair of plain or patterned, black or brown shoes, made from a variety of materials, including calf leather, faux and genuine patent leather, suede and canvas for formal, uniform or casual wear

14a    Distinct when surprisingly revised (7)
DIVERSE: An anagram (surprisingly) of REVISED guides to the definition of an adjective meaning different or showing a great deal of variety

18a    Examine and analyse ordinary copyright in newspapers (7)
PROCESS: A combo of O (ordinary) as the abbreviation for ordinary as in OS or ordinary seaman and C (copyright) as the abbreviation for copyright is placed inside (in) PRESS (newspapers) as the generic name for newspapers viewed collectively, leading to the definition of a verb meaning to analyse or examine so as to come to terms with

20a    Bitterness of topped golf stroke (4)
EDGE: The first or leading (topped) of [W]EDGE (golf) as a type of golf club undergoing a cut or removal (stroke) that takes to the definition of the quality of being sharp or keen, harsh or irritable

23a    Thoroughgoing street half cut off regularly in city (6)
STRICT: STR[EET] as half or 50% of the letters (half) eliminated or removed (cut off) followed by the alternate letters (regularly) from In CiTy, leading to the definition of an adjective meaning observing exact rules or going all lengths

24a    Important deal announced for part of propulsion system (8)
MAINSAIL: MAIN (important) as vital or significant and SALE (deal) as the offer of goods at reduced prices for a limited period serving as a homophone reported to the audience (announced), arriving at the definition of the principal sail, generally attached to the mainmast that forms part of sail propulsion system for boats and the like

25a    Start fighting recruit (6)
ENGAGE: Double definition; the first being a verb meaning to enter into conflict or battle and the second also a verb meaning to provide occupation for or arrange to obtain the use or services of

26a    Publicise skilled trade for plane, say (8)
AIRCRAFT: A charade of AIR (publicise) as to expose to public view or bring to public notice and CRAFT (skilled trade) as a branch of skilled handiwork leads to the definition of a vehicle for travelling through the air that a plane represents

27a    Plain water (4)
MERE: Double definition; the first being an adjective meaning pure or having no admixture and the second being an expanse of standing water

28a    Resort to guessing for this hint (10)
SUGGESTION: An anagram (resort) of TO GUESSING guides to the definition of a slight indication of something or an idea or plan put forward for consideration


1d    Sadly dowdiest having multiple aspects (3-5)
TWO-SIDED: An anagram (sadly) of DOWDIEST leads to the definition of an adjective meaning having two or many surfaces, aspects or parties

2d    Journalist travelled up to collect computers etc (6)
EDITOR: RODE (travelled) as travelled in a vehicle or on a public transport system as a passenger going upwards (up) as a reversal in the down clue to take in (collect) Information Technology in its abbreviated form IT (computers etc) as the computerised or electronic technology related to the gathering, recording and communicating of information, arriving at the definition of a person who is in charge of and determines the final content of a newspaper, magazine or multi-author book

3d    Grasp chickens? (6)
CLUTCH: Double definition; the first being a verb meaning to seize or clasp that leads to the second referring to a brood of chickens

4d    Broken-down company line no longer valid (9)
COLLAPSED: A combo of a charade of CO (company) as the abbreviation for company, L (line) as the abbreviation for line and LAPSED (no longer valid) as expired or no longer effective or valid takes to the definition of an adjective meaning worn-out or no longer functional

5d    Stable and occasionally strong anaesthetic (8)
TOGETHER: The alternate letters (occasionally) of sTrOnG are followed by ETHER (anaesthetic) as a colourless, transparent and volatile liquid used as an anaesthetic, arriving at the definition of a colloquial adverb meaning into a proper or suitable order or state of being organised

6d    Loving upright type getting endless credit (8)
ROMANTIC: ROMAN (upright type) as of type, or the ordinary upright kind, as opposed to italic getting TIC[K] (credit) as a slang term for credit or delayed payment, especially in the phrase ‘on tick’, without the ending or last letter (endless), leading to the definition of an adjective meaning as relating to or of the nature of romance, especially feelings of love or the idea of sentimental love

7d    Chooses for office fellows replacing Conservative constituents (8)
ELEMENTS: ELECTS (chooses for office) as selects for any office or purpose having MEN (fellows) as male members of a team swapping or taking place of (replacing) C (Conservative) as the abbreviation for Conservative, arriving at the definition of essential or characteristic parts of something abstract

13d    An ego trip surprisingly producing an effect (9)
OPERATING: An anagram (surprisingly) of AN EGO TRIP guides to the definition of a verb in the continuous form meaning working or causing something to work or having an effect

15d    Example within adopted attitude (8)
INSTANCE: A charade of IN (within) as at home or at one’s place of business and STANCE (adopted attitude) as the attitude adopted in confronting or dealing with a particular situation takes to the definition of a particular example or occurrence of something

16d    Reckon I’m in landed property (8)
ESTIMATE: I’M from the clue is placed inside (in) ESTATE (landed property) as a large piece of landed property, especially in the country, arriving at the definition of a verb meaning to roughly calculate or judge the worth, number, quantity or extent of

17d    Dogs receiving large decisive blows (8)
SETTLERS: SETTERS (dogs) as dogs of a large long-haired breed trained to stand rigid when scenting game taking in (receiving) L (large) as the abbreviation for large, leading to the definition of decisive blows, arguments etc

19d    Framework that’s kind of key (8)
SKELETON: Double definition; the first being the internal or external framework of bones of a person or an animal or a framework or outline of anything, that leads to the second referring to a type of master key with its serrated edge or the shaped part of its bit filed down in such a way that it can open numerous locks

21d    Bags holding northern nibbles (6)
SNACKS: SACKS (bags) as large bags made of coarse fabric, thick paper etc containing (holding) N (northern) as the abbreviation for northern as in NI or Northern Ireland, leading to the definition of small morsels or bits or small amounts of food eaten between meals

22d    Speak hesitantly ahead of answer I repeatedly state (6)
HAWAII: HAW (speak hesitantly) as to speak with hesitation or drawl, natural or affected followed by (ahead of) A (answer) as the abbreviation for answer and II (I repeatedly) as ‘I’ said once more, arriving at the definition of the state of the United States of America that was the last one to join the union

The clues that I liked in this puzzle were 1a, 10a, 12a, 24a, 25a, 26a, 27a, 28a, 3d, 4d, 5d, 6d, 7d, 16d, 19d and 21d. Many thanks to Chalicea for the entertainment and to BD for the encouragement. Looking forward to being here again. Have a pleasant day.


7 comments on “DT 29873

  1. Thoroughly enjoyable New Year treat – as you’d expect from Chalicea. Many thanks to setter and to Rahmat for the wonderfully detailed review.

    1. I agree with you, Fez, that it was a thoroughly enjoyable New Year treat from Chalicea and once again, thank you so much for going through my review so meticulously and finding it wonderful.

  2. As ever a wonderful and educational review. I almost finished this puzzle, but needed the hints to understand why. Thanks to all, and a belated Happy new year

    1. Once again, thank you so much, Grahame+Welch, for liking my review as usual and also wish you a belated Happy New Year.

  3. 3*/3*……
    liked 8A ” Unusually heartless, collecting proof of debts in a horrible manner (8) “

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