DT 30065 (full review) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30065 (full review)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30065

A full review by Rahmat Ali

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This puzzle was published on 13th Aug 2022

BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

Greetings from Kolkata. Once again, a friendly and straightforward Saturday puzzle from Cephas that I enjoyed solving and thereafter writing a review of the same for your kind perusal and valuable feedback.

Geisha, the answer to the clue of 23a, took me to my teenage life of 1973 when I was in Class VIII and I reminisced that I came across this Japanese word for the first time in one of those days. A classmate had lent me a novel by Harold Robbins entitled ‘The Pirate’. Reading that novel was a kind of novel experience for me. I got to know about a lot of things through it that were till then unknown to me. Geisha was also one of the many words that I learnt through that novel. Much later, during my late twenties, I got to know more about the geisha when I was studying Japanese at a Japanese language evening school. The net further brushed up my knowledge about these female performing artists and entertainers trained in traditional Japanese performing arts styles such as dance, music and singing, as also being proficient hostesses. They entertain at parties known as ozashiki, often for the entertainment of wealthy clients as well as performing on stage and at festivals. The traditional hairstyles and oshiroi make-up fascinate them and they are mostly dressed in long, trailing kimono. Geiko is a regional term used to describe geisha in Western Japan, including Kyoto and Kanazawa. This term directly translates as ‘woman of art’ and is part of the Kyoto dialect spoken by geisha in Kyoto and Western Japan. Etymologically, the word ‘geisha’ is the clubbing together of two kanji words: gei meaning ‘art’ and sha meaning’ the performer’. Literally, an ideal translation of geisha would be a ‘performing artist’.

Peddle, the definition to the clue of 24a, reminded me of the two spellings of peddler. They are peddler and pedlar; the former being used mostly in the United States of America and the latter in the United Kingdom. A peddler or pedlar is a door-to-door and travelling vendor of small items of goods. A peddler, in British English pedlar, is also known as a chapman, packman, cheapjack, hawker, higgler, huckster, costermonger, colporteur or solicitor. In England, the term was mostly used for travellers hawking goods in the countryside to small towns and villages. In London, more specific terms were used, such as costermonger. The English law defines a peddler as “any hawker, pedlar, petty chapman, tinker, caster of metals, mender of chairs or other person who, without any horse or other beast bearing or drawing burden, travels and trades on foot and goes from town to town or to other men’s houses, carrying to sell or exposing for sale any goods, wares or merchandise immediately to be delivered or selling or offering for sale his skill in handicraft.” In the Bible, the term ‘peddler’ was used to describe those who spread the word of God for profit. The book of Corinthians has the following phrase, “For we are not as so many, peddling the word of God.” (Corinthians 2:17). The origin of the word, known in English since 1225, is uncertain, but is possibly an Anglicised version of the French pied, Latin pes, pedis ‘foot’, referring to a petty trader travelling on foot.

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1a    Observe then follow monitoring group (8)
WATCHDOG: A charade of WATCH (observe) as to look at or observe attentively over a period of time and (then) DOG (follow) as to follow someone closely and persistently leads to the definition of a noun meaning a person, group or organisation closely monitoring governmental or commercial operations etc to guard against inefficiency or illegality

6a    Tap shoe? (4)
PUMP: Double definition; the first being a verb meaning to try to elicit information from someone by persistent questioning and the second a noun referring to a light shoe without a fastening, worn especially for dancing

9a    Board question move to suppress article (6)
QUANGO: QU (question) as an abbreviation for question and GO (move) as to travel or move from one place to another to contain (suppress) AN (article) as one of the indefinite articles, arriving at the definition of a board funded by, and with members appointed by, central government, to supervise or develop activity in areas of public interest

10a    Grip across awkward situation (8)
TRANSFIX: A charade of TRANS- (across) as a prefix signifying across, beyond or through and FIX (awkward situation) as a difficult or awkward situation from which it is hard to extricate oneself takes to the definition of a verb meaning to hold motionless by or as if by piercing

11a    Move to and fro round gauge, it’s used during election (11)
SWINGOMETER: A charade of SWING (move to and fro) as to move or cause to move back and forth or from side to side while suspended or on an axis, O (round) as anything round or nearly so and METER (gauge) as a device that measures and records the quantity, degree or rate of something guides to the definition of a graphics device that shows the effects of the swing from one party to another on British election results programmes on television

14a    Cricket team losing in Newcastle area (6,4)
COUNTY DOWN: A charade of COUNTY (cricket team) as a cricket team competing in the county cricket championship and DOWN (losing) as an adverb meaning to a final state of defeat guides to the definition of one of the six counties that form Northern Ireland, in the northeast of the island of Ireland and having among other places, Newcastle, a seaside resort town now much more celebrated as the home of Royal County Down Golf Club and for its beach and wildlife reserve

15a    Has to be new wine (4)
MUST: Double definition; the first being a modal verb meaning ‘ought to’, ‘have to’ or ‘has to’ that emphasises a necessity or requirement, leading to the second referring to the expressed juice of fruit and especially grapes before and during fermentation that has arrived to Old English from Latin mustum, a shorter version of vīnum mustum meaning young or new wine

16a    Axe said calculations (4)
ADZE: ADDS (calculations) as referring to the shorter version of the plural of addition that deals with numerical calculations serving as a homophone heard by the audience, guiding to the definition of a tool similar to an axe, with an arched blade attached at right angles to the handle, used for cutting or shaping large pieces of wood

17a    Ration Enid distributed is excessive (10)
INORDINATE: An anagram (distributed) of RATION ENID leads to the definition of an adjective meaning unusually or disproportionately large

19a    Regalia, precious stones on top of one’s head (5,6)
CROWN JEWELS: JEWELS (precious stones) as precious stones, typically crystals or pieces of a hard lustrous or translucent mineral cut into shape with flat facets or smoothed and polished for use as ornaments placed after (on) CROWN (top of one’s head) as the top part of a person’s head or a hat, arriving at the definition of a plural noun but sometimes treated also as singular, referring to the jewels, including the regalia, worn by the sovereign on state occasions

22a    Party member has short display about deserter (8)
DEMOCRAT: A charade of DEMO (short display) as the shorter version for demonstration that is a practical exhibition and explanation of how something works or is performed, C (about) as the abbreviation for the Latin word circa meaning ‘approximately’ or ‘about’ and RAT (deserter) as a renegade or turncoat guides to the definition of a member of the Democrat Party of the United States

23a    She, a GI, upset hostess (6)
GEISHA: An anagram (upset) of SHE A GI takes to the definition of the traditional Japanese female entertainer and hostess

24a    Peddle, close after five (4)
VEND: END (close) as to come or bring to a final point or to finish coming after or following (after) V (five) as the Roman numeral for five, taking to the definition of a verb meaning to sell something as a hawker or pedlar

25a    Hustlers possibly becoming devoid of passion (8)
RUTHLESS: An anagram (possibly) of HUSTLERS guides to the definition of an adjective meaning having or showing no ardent affection, pity or compassion for others


2d    A strange bloomer? (4)
ARUM: A charade of A from the clue and RUM (strange) as odd or peculiar takes to the definition of a genus of flowering plants Araceae, native to Europe, northern Africa and western and central Asia

3d    Archdeacon kept holding his nose? (4)
CONK: Part of or hidden inside (holding) [ARCHDEA]CON K[EPT] guides to the definition of an informal term for a person’s nose

4d    Entrance in rebuilt woodyard unfinished (7)
DOORWAY: An anagram (rebuilt) of WOODYAR[D] that is devoid of its last letter (unfinished) leads to the definition of an entrance to a room or building through a door

5d    Incur wrath when you have a bath? (3,4,3,5)
GET INTO HOT WATER: The idiomatic definition of a phrase here meaning to put or find myself in a dangerous, vulnerable or troublesome situation or position, especially that which could be beyond my abilities to resolve and in which I am in danger of facing the wrath of others or being criticised or punished is cryptically arrived at from what I do when I have a hot bath

6d    Military unit also included in scheme (7)
PLATOON: TOO (also) as an adverb meaning in addition or as well entered (included) in PLAN (scheme) as a scheme for accomplishing a purpose take to the definition of a subdivision of a company-sized military unit normally consisting of two or more squads or sections

7d    Intellectual adult leaving disarmament in confusion (10)
MASTERMIND: A (adult) as the abbreviation for adult signifying the rating of motion pictures meant for only the adult viewers in some countries coming out of (leaving) DIS[A]RMAMENT that is subject to an anagram (in confusion), arriving at the definition of a person with an outstanding intellect

8d    Drives round taking nearly everything out of Italy, that’s the difference (9)
DIVERSITY: An anagram (round) of DRIVES followed by taking most of the letters of (nearly) AL[L] (everything) out of IT[AL]Y, leading to the definition of a noun meaning unlikeness, difference or the state or fact of being diverse

12d    Dust Kelvin, say, used in potentially explosive situation (6,3)
POWDER KEG: A charade of POWDER (dust) as fine, dry, dust-like particles produced by the grinding, crushing or disintegration of a solid substance, K (Kelvin) as the abbreviation for Kelvin that is the SI base unit of temperature for engineering and the physical sciences and EG (say) as the abbreviation for the Latin phrase exempli gratia meaning ‘for example’ or ‘say’ guides to the definition of a potentially dangerous situation, especially one involving violent repercussions

13d    Became a subscriber? (10)
UNDERWROTE: The definition of a verb in the past tense is cryptically arrived at from UNDER- (sub) as a prefix meaning below or beneath and WROTE (scribed) as marked letters, words or other symbols on a surface, typically paper, with a pen or pencil that could be read, that is, UNDERWROTE (became a subscriber) as ‘sub-scribed’

17d    Toughened up, accepting Jack’s hurt (7)
INJURED: INURED (toughened up) as toughened and hardened by prolonged use or exposure taking inside (accepting) J (Jack) as the abbreviation for jack as a playing card ranking below a queen, giving the definition of an adjective meaning harmed, damaged or impaired

18d    Please switch illumination off! (7)
DELIGHT: The definition of a verb meaning to please someone greatly is cryptically arrived at from DE-LIGHT or DE- (off) as a prefix forming verbs and their derivatives meaning down from or away or indicating deprivation or a reversal of process and LIGHT (switch illumination) as a verb meaning to switch on an electric light

20d    Part of duck that’s brought at end of meal (4)
BILL: Double definition; the second being a printed or written statement that shows how much money one owes after eating in a restaurant or hotel that leads to the first referring to the beak of a bird, especially when it is slender, flattened or weak or the beak that belongs to a web-footed bird

21d    So taken in by enthusiasm (4)
THUS: Part of or hidden inside (taken in by) [EN]THUS[IASM] leads to the definition of an adverb meaning hence, therefore or as a result or consequence of this

There were several clues that I liked in this pangrammatic puzzle such as 1a, 9a, 11a, 14a, 19a, 3d, 5d, 12d and 18d; 18d being the best of the lot. Many thanks to Cephas for the entertainment, to BD for the encouragement and to Gazza for the assistance. Would be happy to be here again. Have a nice day.

5 comments on “DT 30065 (full review)

  1. Thanks as always for your comprehensive review.

    11a brought back memories of Canadian psephologist (I wonder if that has ever appeared in a crossword) Robert McKenzie who enthusiastically used a very low-tech swingometer on BBC election night programmes.

    1. … total cost about sixpence and far easier to understand than the complex high-tech graphics used these days.

      1. I’d forgotten he was Canadian but the swingometer was low tech but fun. Those were the days!

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