DT 30185 (full review) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30185 (full review)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30185

A full review by Rahmat Ali

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This puzzle was published on 31st Dec 2022

BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

Greetings from Kolkata. A bit tougher yet entertaining Saturday puzzle from Cephas that I enjoyed solving and thereafter writing a review of the same for your kind reading and important feedback.

Cashmere, the answer to the clue of 9a, having link with Kashmir was known to me even around four decades ago but now I wanted to learn about it in detail and so visited the net. I got to know that the name came from the Kashmir Province in the Himalayas. As a matter of fact, it is the 17th century spelling of the word ‘Kashmir’ that was the region wherefrom cashmere goats and the use of their fibres originated. Thus, cashmere today is an archaic spelling of Kashmir in its place of origin and many other countries, though some countries still spell it as cashmere. The cashmere with a ‘c’ spelling is now used to describe the goats and fibre they produce, while Kashmir with a ‘K’ spelling, which is closer to the original Sanskrit rendering of the word, remains as the name of the place. The name Kashmir means ‘desiccated land’, derived from two Sanskrit words ka meaning ‘water’ and shimīra meaning ‘desiccate’. Kashmir today is no longer one of the leading suppliers of cashmere, though some families here still produce the traditional cashmere. The Schneider Group’s Cashmere Annual Report 2016 lists China as the largest producer, processor and exporter of cashmere in the world and China and Mongolia together produce approximately 75 per cent of the world’s cashmere. The other producers are Afghanistan, Tibet, Iran, Pakistan, New Zealand and Australia. However, it is believed that the best quality cashmere is still produced by goats raised in the Himalayan highlands. Cashmere is six times finer than the human hair, and the thinner the fibre, the softer it is. In fact, it is so soft that it does not produce the itchiness like many other wool products. The most special quality that sets it apart from other fabrics is that it is 100 per cent natural fibre. Cashmere yarn can also be up to eight times warmer than clothes made from sheep wool, despite being lighter in weight. Cashmere is dear because it is beautiful, rare and has exclusive qualities that makes it priced above other fibres. It is produced in vastly smaller volumes. Its annual production ranges between 4,000 and 10,000 metric tonnes vis-à-vis that of wool being between 1 and 2 million metric tonnes. Each cashmere goat can produce around 100 to 200 grams of cashmere annually, whereas a sheep can produce between 1 and 13 kilograms of wool during that period.

The singular of magi, the answer to the clue of 5d, is magus. The transliterated plural magi entered English from Latin in the beginning of the 13th century.  The singular magus appeared considerably later, when it was borrowed from Old French in the late 14th century with magician as its meaning.

The singular of opera, part of the wordplay to the clue of 18d, is opus. The Italian word ‘opera’ means work, both in the sense of the labour done and the result produced. It was derived from the Latin word of the same spelling which also meant ‘work’. The Italian word was first used in 1639 as representing a composition in which poetry, dance, and music were combined; the first recorded English usage in this sense was dated 1648.

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1a    Priest with proclamation to foretell (7)
PREDICT: A charade of PR (priest) as an abbreviation for priest and (with) EDICT (proclamation) as an official order or proclamation issued by a person in authority leads to the definition of a verb meaning to say or estimate that a specified thing will happen in the future or will be a consequence of something

9a    Money, nothing more for fabric (8)
CASHMERE: A charade of CASH (money) as money in coins or notes, as distinct from cheques, money orders or credit and MERE (nothing more) as an adjective used to emphasise that the fact of something being present in a situation is enough to influence that situation takes to the definition of a soft fabric made from the wool of the goat of the same name

10a    Agree with right-winger getting despatched (7)
CONSENT: A charade of CON (right-winger) as in the context of party politics referring to a Conservative or someone who supports or belongs to the right-wing or conservative section of a political party or system and (getting) SENT (despatched) as a verb in the past tense meaning despatched someone to convey a message or do an errand or arranged for the delivery of something, especially by post, arriving at the definition of a verb meaning to agree to do something

11a    Dispose of one fancy clue, make fun of it (8)
RIDICULE: RID (dispose of) as to take action so as to be free of a troublesome or unwanted person or thing followed by I (one) as the Roman numeral for one and an anagram (fancy) of CLUE, taking to the definition of a verb meaning to make fun of, either sportively and good-humouredly, or unkindly with the intention of humiliating

12a    Lowly servant (6)
MENIAL: Double definition; the second being a noun meaning a domestic servant who does boring or unpleasant work for little money that leads to the first an adjective used to describe work that does not require much skill and lacks prestige

13a     Clothing in which one does not puff so much! (10)
UNDERPANTS: The definition of an undergarment, especially for men or boys, covering the lower part of the torso and having two holes for the legs is cryptically arrived at from the situation when one is under or having less of pants or gasps (does not puff so much)

15a    During vigil, less than half a pint (4)
GILL: Part of or hidden inside (during) [VI]GIL, L[ESS] guides to the definition of a Northern England dialect meaning half a pint, especially of beer

16a    Ground rent originally under here (9)
EPICENTRE: A cryptic definition of the point on the earth’s surface where the effects of an earthquake are felt most strongly immediately following the fault rupture or rent at the place of its origin, hypocentre or focus directly below or the subsurface that may be long and spread surface damage across the entire rupture zone

21a    Poor work between the lines (4)
ROPY: OP (work) as the abbreviation for opus number referring to work, especially in a musical composition in which one is numbered in order of publication coming inside (between) RY (the lines) as the abbreviation for Railway, representing a track laid with rails for wheels to run on, especially for locomotives with passengers and goods wagons, taking to the definition of an adjective meaning in bad condition or of poor quality

22a    Sharp played by mistake? (10)
ACCIDENTAL: Double definition; the second being an adjective meaning happening by chance, unintentionally or unexpectedly takes to the first a noun referring to a musical term for a sharp, flat or natural not in key signature

24a    It may be invisible coming from harbour (6)
EXPORT: The definition of a service sold abroad in an international trade also known as invisible trade and revenues earned like from insurance, consultancy etc that are not tangible and devoid of any physical existence is arrived at from a charade of EX (coming from) as the preposition meaning coming from or direct from and PORT (harbour) as a harbour that is a shelter, natural or artificial, for ships

25a    Criminal from Germany full of dread (8)
GANGSTER: GER (Germany) as the abbreviation for Germany containing or having inside (full of) ANGST (dread) a feeling of deep anxiety or dread produced by awareness of the uncertainties and paradoxes inherent in the state of being human, leading to the definition of a member of a gang of roughs or criminals

27a    Painter perhaps needing energy to become entertainer (7)
ARTISTE: ARTIST (painter perhaps) as a person who creates paintings and drawings as a profession or hobby and serving as an example of a group that creates art using conscious skill and creative imagination comprising sculpture, music, film-making, acting, dancing etc having beside (needing) E (energy) as the abbreviation for energy as a quantitative property in physics leads to the definition of a professional entertainer, especially a singer or dancer

28a    Stormed when gatecrasher called? (8)
RAMPAGED: The definition of a verb in the past tense meaning rushed about wildly, stormed or moved through a place in a violent and uncontrollable manner, especially of a large group of people is arrived at at a time (when) RAM (gatecrasher) as represented by a battering ram that is a heavy object used to break a door or for breaching fortifications and PAGED (called) as summoned by sending a page around, by repeatedly calling aloud for, especially using a public address system or by means of a pager occurred as a charade

29a    Leaves chaps in shot (7)
SPINACH: An anagram (shot) of CHAPS IN guides to the definition of the young dark green leaves of the plant Spinacia oleracea of the goosefoot family used as a vegetable


2d    Radio he’s retuned in old country (8)
RHODESIA: An anagram (retuned) of RADIO HE’S guides to the definition of former British colony under the name of Southern Rhodesia in southern Africa that in 1965 became a self-declared independent country Rhodesia without international recognition and in 1980 an internationally recognised independent country Zimbabwe

3d    Adherent‘s record pile dislodged (8)
DISCIPLE: DISC (record) as a gramophone record followed by an anagram (dislodged) of PILE takes to the definition of a follower or pupil of a teacher, leader or philosopher

4d    Vice-consul surprisingly expressing finality (10)
CONCLUSIVE: An anagram (surprisingly) of VICE-CONSUL guides to the definition of an adjective meaning expressing finality, completeness or termination

5d    Wise Men‘s first periodical (4)
MAGI: MAG (periodical) as an informal term for a magazine or a periodical and I (first) as the number one or the first in Roman numerals or the first cardinal that altogether stands for Magazine No.1 or first magazine or periodical leads to the definition of the Three Wise Men from the East who brought gifts to the infant Jesus

6d    Be quiet gently going round edge in bright pink (6)
SHRIMP: SH (be quiet) as an exclamation used to call for silence and P (gently) as the written abbreviation for piano in a piece of music and indicating that the piece should be played quietly, softly or gently surrounding (going round) RIM (edge) as an edge, brim or margin, especially when raised or more or less circular, arriving at the definition of the colour of a small edible crustacean, especially a decapod of Crangon or related genera

7d    I, during bungee jumping, dance (7)
BEGUINE: I from the clue is placed inside (during) an anagram (jumping) of BUNGEE, taking to the definition of a dance of French West Indian origin or its music, in bolero rhythm

8d    Back again with several lines (7)
REVERSE: A charade of RE- (again) as a prefix denoting again and (with) VERSE (several lines) as poetry, as opposed to prose, comprising several lines of writing in which words are arranged in a rhythmic pattern guides to the definition of a verb meaning to retreat or turn back or to move or cause to move backwards or in an opposite direction

11d    Like a reminder of a special day (3-6)
RED-LETTER: A cryptic definition of an adjective meaning designating a memorable or joyous day or event: from the custom of marking holidays on the calendar in red ink

14d    Rickety vehicle, shake catch (10)
RATTLETRAP: A charade of RATTLE (shake) as to make someone nervous, worried or irritated and TRAP (catch) as to catch an animal in a trap arrives at the definition of an old or rickety vehicle

17d    Up in Orient travelling? That’s rash (8)
ERUPTION: UP from the clue placed inside (in) an anagram (travelling) of ORIENT leads to the definition of a noun meaning a spot, rash or other mark appearing suddenly on the skin

18d    Histrionic works with involuntary response (8)
OPERATIC: The definition of an adjective meaning loosely histrionic or extravagantly theatrical is arrived at from a charade of OPERA (works) as the plural of opus that is an artistic work, especially a musical composition and (with) TIC (involuntary response) as figuratively an involuntary habitual response

19d    Rider maybe looking very tired (7)
HAGGARD: Double definition; the first being the surname of an English writer of adventure fiction romances set in exotic locations, predominantly Africa, and a pioneer of the lost world literary genre whose full name was Henry Rider Haggard that leads to the second an adjective meaning looking exhausted and unwell, especially from fatigue, worry or suffering

20d    Thrifty management of nation’s resources and finances (7)
ECONOMY: Double nounal definition; the first denoting the frugality in the expenditure or consumption of money, materials etc that can be regarded as thrifty management and the second referring to the nation’s resources and finance as the prosperity or earnings of a place

23d    Gloomy part indeed is malicious (6)
DISMAL: Part of or hidden inside (part) [INDEE]D IS MAL[ICIOUS] guides to the definition of an adjective meaning gloomy, dreary or depressing

26d    Sharp instrument piercing the peel (4)
ÉPÉE: Part of or hidden inside (piercing) [TH]E PEE[L] leads to the definition of a sharp-pointed, narrow-bladed sword without a cutting edge, used for duelling and, with a button on the point, for fencing

There were several clues that I liked in this puzzle such as 9a, 13a, 16a, 22a, 25a, 3d, 6d, 14d and 19d; 16a being the best of the lot. Thanks to BD for the encouragement, to Cephas for the entertainment and to Gazza for the assistance. Looking forward to being here again. Have a nice day.

4 comments on “DT 30185 (full review)
Leave your own comment 

  1. 2*/3*….
    liked 16A “Ground rent originally under here (9)”
    hate to quibble Rahmat, but I think that a gill is a quarter pint, not half (15A ) …
    have a Happy New Year !

    1. Thank you so much, RobinNewman, and Happy New Year to you too. Regarding 15a, I was not willing to define ‘less than half a pint’ as a gill which is no doubt a quarter pint in general, when collinsdictionary.com lent me a helping hand through its definition of a gill in British English as (1) a unit of liquid measure equal to one quarter of a pint and (2) half a pint, esp of beer (Northern England dialect). Moreover, the wordplay with the remaining two words, ‘during vigil’ would not have fetched me a satisfactory answer.

      1. You are correct Rahmat; Farlex does give “dialect Northern English half a pint, esp of beer”, although the online version of Chambers does not.

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