Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 3159 (Hints)
Hints and tips by Senf
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A very good Sunday morning from Winnipeg – where, even though it is still Spring we have gone from late Winter to early Summer in a matter of days. But there is still a major flooding problem partly because one of our rivers flows North from North Dakota and Minnesota and as they got the same Colorado Lows that we did they have ‘passed on’ their ‘contribution’ to the river to us.
For me, ‘middle of the road’ for Dada as far as the challenge was concerned but I didn’t have a great sense of satisfaction on completion. I counted six anagrams (with three partials), one lurker (reversed), and one homophone – all in a symmetric 28 clues; with 14 hints ‘sprinkled’ throughout the grid you should be able to get the checkers to enable the solving of the unhinted clues.
Candidates for favourite – 20a, 1d, 18d, and 21d.
As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, a number of the more difficult clues have been selected and hints provided for them.
Don’t forget to follow BD’s instructions in RED at the bottom of the hints!
Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”. Where the hint describes a construct as “usual” this means that more help can be found in The Usual Suspects, which gives a number of the elements commonly used in the wordplay. Another useful page is Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing, which features words with meanings that are not always immediately obvious.
A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions.
Some hints follow:
8a Insect beat a hasty retreat, we hear (4)
The homophone (we hear) of a single word for beat a hasty retreat (as in run away).
12a Darn that item of underwear (8)
I was slowed down by misreading the first word of the clue as it is one of those where the last letters tend to ‘run together’ – a double definition – the first is an interjection expressing exasperation.
13a Nevertheless, only seating available? (15)
Written as (3,4,8) an indication(?) that only seating is available.
20a Artistic steps left and right, mood shifting during evening (8,7)
Listen very carefully, I shall say this only once – the single letters for Left and Right and an anagram (shifting) of MOOD all inserted into (during) a synonym of evening (which is nothing to do with time of day).
23a Rain said to spread in Mediterranean location (8)
An anagram (to spread) of RAIN SAID.
27a Animal caught by shotgun, gracelessly falling over (3)
The reversed lurker (caught by . . . falling over) found in two words in the clue.
28a Valley dropping away, largely empty, first of all (4)
The initial letters (first of all) of four words in the clue.
1d Drunk, half-cut blokes imbibing too much (6)
The first half (the rest is cut – half-cut) of BLOkes containing (imbibing) the three letter abbreviation for an expression that means too much.
3d Running about in the raw, pet, don’t 5 down! (5,3,4,3)</br />
An anagram (running about) of IN THE RAW, PET, DON’T.
4d Nonsense gags satisfactory, one enjoying reading (7)</br />
A four letter synonym of nonsense (apparently borrowed from Turkish) containing (gags) the two letters often used for satisfactory and the Roman numeral for one.
5d Don’t tuck your shirt in for party! (3,2,3,4,3)</br >
An expression that might indicate that one has decided not to tuck one’s shirt in or one was going to have fun at a party!
18d Get behind team that’s bottom (8))
A single word for get behind (as in support) and a synonym of team.
21d Start of long summer run (6)
The first letter (start) of Long and a synonym of summer (as in someone carrying out an arithmetical process).
24d Light in spirit initially extinguished (4)
A spirit (from folklore) with its first letter removed (initially extinguished).
Quick Crossword Pun:
JESTER + DRAWS = CHEST OF DRAWERS – I think
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American musician, songwriter and actor Eric Hilliard Nelson, better known as Ricky Nelson, was born on this day in 1940. His ‘best performing’ single in the UK was Hello Mary Lou which in 1961 reached number 2 in the charts as half of what was known as, in the days of vinyl at 6s 4d, a ‘Double A-side’: