Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29994
Hints and tips by pommers
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BD Rating – Difficulty *** – Enjoyment ****
Hola from the Vega Baja where the weather is a lot better than it’s been in Ottawa. I’m here again this week because Falcon is without electricity after a massive storm, with 130km/hr winds, hit the province of Ontario and knocked out the power to hundreds of thousands of people, including him.
There seems to be a bit of a literary theme to today’s puzzle. We have two famous novels, an actress, a pair of comedy actors and a dramatist. It’s not too difficult but certainly not at the easy end of the spectrum.
As usual the ones I liked most are in blue. The definitions are underlined in the clues and the answers are under the “click here” buttons so don’t click on them unless you really want to see the answer. Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.
1a Sow hit hard on the head must become dizzy? (14)
SCATTERBRAINED: A word for sow, as in sow seeds, followed by a word meaning hit hard on the head.
9a Opposed to increases in a tax initially (7)
AGAINST: Take the A from the clue and a T (Tax initially) and insert (in) a word meaning increases.
10a The old man having issues over leisure activity (7)
PASTIME: The usual two letters for your old man or father followed by a word meaning issue, but it’s backwards (over).
11a Spoil attractive person (4)
DISH: Double definition:
12a Charge, briefly, involves money invested on top of everything else (2,3,2,3)
TO CAP IT ALL: A charge, to cross a bridge perhaps, without its last letter (briefly) has inserted (involves) a word for money invested. Then it’s split (2,3,2,3) to get a phrase meaning on top of everything else.
15a Examine outside of every in dividual wooden box (3,5)
TEA CHEST: A word meaning to examine or try is placed outside a word meaning every.
17a Unusually tart, I constantly scold revolutionary dramatist (8)
RATTIGAN: Anagram (unusually) of TART I followed by a reversal (revolutionary) of a word meaning to constantly scold.
18a Rope in mate, the roofer (6)
TETHER: A lurker hiding in (in) the last three words.
21a Cleaner having nap before noon exercises (5,5)
DAILY DOZEN: The first word is a term for a cleaning lady and the second is a nap followed by an N(oon).
22a Exclude group’s first report (4)
BANG: The report of a gun perhaps. It’s a word for exclude followed by a G (Group’s first).
24a Tests: exams including endless study (7)
ORDEALS: Take a word for a spoken exam and insert (including) a study without its last letter (endless).
25a Democrat in drubbing, almost tearful (7)
MAUDLIN: A term for a drubbing has a D(emocrat) inserted and loses its last letter (almost).
26a Comedy duo in landau Harry led out (6,3,5)
LAUREL AND HARDY: Anagram (out) of LANDAU HARRY LED.
1d Disgraceful event in examination — boy shown up (7)
SCANDAL: A word for an examination or a quick look followed by a word for a young boy but he’s backwards (shown up in a down clue).
2d In area I don’t know, I got an idea abroad for a novel (1,7,2,5)
A PASSAGE TO INDIA: Start with A for area and follow with a word meaning I don’t know, as used on Mastermind, and after that lot you’ll need an anagram (abroad) of I GOT AN IDEA.
3d Quality of sound coming from piston engine (4)
TONE: A lurker hiding in (coming from) the last two words.
4d Budget speech lacking oomph, at the start (6)
RATION: The usual speech with the O missing (lacking Oomph at the start).
5d Shown again looking embarrassed about fuel, energy … (8)
REPEATED: Start with a type of fuel which I think isn’t used much nowadays and an E(nergy) and around them (about) put the usual word for looking embarrassed.
6d After visiting the theatre one may be laughing uncontrollably (2,8)
IN STITCHES: What you may be after visiting an operating theatre is also a phrase meaning laughing uncontrollably.
8d Unknown character close to stage, very much a fanatic (6)
ZEALOT: One of the algebraic unknowns followed by E (close to stagE) and then a phrase (1,3) meaning very much.
13d Italian in navy reread fine novel (6,4)
VANITY FAIR: Insert IT (Italian) into an anagram (reread) of NAVY to get the first word. The second word is one meaning fine or OK.
17d Right editor, best for tabloid? (3-3)
RED TOP: R(ight) followed by the usual editor and then a word for best gives a slang term for a tabloid newspaper.
19d Period of British rule concerning Cyprus — see information inside (7)
REGENCY: Start with the usual two letters for concerning and the IVE code for Cyprus. Into that insert a word for information (see . . . inside).
20d Morse changing name and address (6)
SERMON: This is an address usually heard in a church service. It’s an anagram (changing) of MORSE followed by an N(ame).
23d Needing to be done quickly in plant (4)
RUSH: This water plant is also a word meaning to do quickly.
There’s a lot of good stuff in this puzzle but my top three are the ones in blue, with 6d on the top step of the podium.
Quick crossword puns:
Top Line: SEAR + SUCCOUR = SEERSUCKER
Bottom line: PROPHET + EARS = PROFITEERS