Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Tuesday, July 17, 2018 — DT 28681

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 28681
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Thursday, March 8, 2018
Setter
Unknown
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 28681]
Big Dave's Crossword Blog Review Written By
pommers
BD Rating
Difficulty - ★ / ★★ Enjoyment - ★★★
Falcon's Experience
┌────┬────┬────┬────┬────┬────┬────┐
███████████████████████████████████
└────┴────┴────┴────┴────┴────┴────┘
Legend:
- solved without assistance
- incorrect prior to use of puzzle solving tools
- solved with assistance from puzzle solving tools
- solved with aid of checking letters provided by puzzle solving tools
- solved but without fully parsing the clue
- unsolved or incorrect prior to visiting Big Dave's Crossword Blog
- solved with aid of checking letters provided by solutions from Big Dave's Crossword Blog
- reviewed by Falcon for Big Dave's Crossword Blog
- yet to be solved

Introduction

There are a couple of bizarre coincidences to be found in today's puzzle — only one of which would have been known to British solvers at the time this puzzle appeared in the UK.

I invite you to leave a comment to let us know how you fared with the puzzle.

Notes on Today's Puzzle

This commentary is intended to serve as a supplement to the review of this puzzle found at Big Dave's Crossword Blog, to which a link is provided in the table above.

Click here for an explanation of conventions and symbols used in explaining the parsing of clues.


The purpose of this article is to explain the conventions and symbols that I use on this blog in explaining the parsing of clues.

Legend:

The following symbols are used in reviews:
  • "*" anagram
  • "~" sounds like
  • "<" indicates that the preceding letters are reversed
  • "( )" encloses contained letters
  • "_" replaces letters that have been deleted
  • "†" indicates that the word is present in the clue

The review of a clue takes the following general structure:

#a/d   Clue containing parsing markup (num*)

* num = numeration

Explanations pertaining to the wordplay (or first definition in a double definition)

(Horizontal separator)


Explanations pertaining to the definition (or second definition in a double definition) and solution.

Explanatory Box
An explanatory box provides additional information about the clue. In most cases this information will not necessarily help in solving the clue but provides information about the clue. In the case of the weekday syndicated Daily Telegraph puzzles, such information is often intended to help the North American solver appreciate how the clue may be perceived by a British solver. These boxes may also provide information on people, places, films, television programmes, works of art and literature, etc. mentioned in the clue.

Although the titles of these boxes will usually be drawn from a standard list, I do occasionally throw in a title specifically suggested by the subject at hand. The standard titles include:
  • Scratching the Surface - an explanation of the surface reading of the clue
  • Delving Deeper - in-depth information pertaining to a subject mentioned in an explanation
  • Behind the Picture - for weekday puzzles, information about an illustration found on Big Dave's Crossword Blog
  • What did he/she/they say? - for weekday puzzles, an explanation of a remark made in a review or comment on Big Dave's Crossword Blog
  • What are they talking about? - for weekday puzzles, an explanation of a discussion on Big Dave's Crossword Blog
One box that may provide information that could prove helpful in solving the clue is the following:
  • Here and There - for weekday puzzles, discusses words whose British meaning differs from their North American meaning

Note that there are many types of cryptic crossword clue and it is not my intention to exhaustively go through all of them here. I will only deal with clue types to the extent necessary to explain the conventions and symbols used on the blog. Furthermore, be aware that, in the world of cryptic crosswords, there seems to be an exception to every rule.

With one exception that I can think of, cryptic crossword clues provide two routes to the solution. These are commonly referred to as the definition and wordplay. While these terms serve well for most clues, there are some cases where the more formal terms of primary indication and subsidiary indication may be more appropriate.

Most cryptic crossword clues consist of a definition (primary indication) and wordplay (subsidiary indication). The definition may be a "precise definition" (a definition that is either taken straight from a dictionary or at least phrased in a non-misleading fashion) or it may be a "cryptic definition" (a definition misleadingly phrased so as to misdirect the solver either with respect to the meaning of the definition as a whole or to an incorrect sense of a word used in the definition).

The only type of clue that I can think of where there are not two ways of finding the solution are those in which the entire clue is a cryptic definition.
I identify precise definitions by marking them with a solid underline in the clue and cryptic definitions by marking them with a dotted underline.
In clues in which both definition and wordplay are present, the two parts of the clue combine to provide an overall meaningful statement (the surface reading) which usually bears no relationship to the underlying cryptic reading of the clue. In some cases, an extra word or phrase will be inserted into the clue to create a meaningful link between the definition and wordplay. I define clues which contain such a link word or link phrase as having an explicit link and clues which contain no link word or link phrase as having an implicit link.
I mark the existence of an explicit link by enclosing the link word or link phrase between forward slashes (/link/) and mark the existence of an implicit link with double forward slashes (//) positioned between the definition and wordplay.
Examples

A few examples may help to illustrate these points more clearly.

The first example is a clue used by Jay in DT 28573:

  • 4d   Fellow left work // a failure (4)
Here the definition is "a failure" which is marked with a solid underline to show that it is a precise definition. The wordplay parses as F (fellow; abbrev.) + L (left; abbrev.) + OP (work; abbrev. used in music) which gives us the solution F|L|OP. The double forward slashes (//) between the definition and wordplay indicate the existence of an "implicit link" between the two parts of the clue (that is, no extra words are inserted into the clue to form the link).

The second example is a clue used by Giovanni in DT 28575:
  • 29a   Female going to match // travels with mother in advance (10)
Here the definition "female going to match" is cryptic (the setter is attempting to misdirect our thoughts to a sports event rather than a marriage ceremony) and thus is marked with a a dotted underline. The wordplay is {RIDES (travels) + (with) MA (mother)} contained in (in) BID (advance) giving us the solution B(RIDES|MA)ID. As in the first example, the double forward slashes indicate the presence of an implicit link.

The third example is a clue used by Rufus is DT 28583:
  • 18d   Knight caught by misplaced big blow /is/ staggering (8)
Here the definition is "staggering" which is marked with a solid underline to show that it is a precise definition. The wordplay parses as N ([chess symbol for] knight) contained in (caught in) an anagram (misplaced) of BIG BLOW producing the solution WOBBLI(N)G. Finally, forward slashes mark the link word (/is/).
I also use distinctive underlining to mark &lit.[7] and semi-&lit. clues. Note that the reviewers on Big Dave's Crossword Blog generally prefer to refer to these clue types by the less pretentious names of all-in-one or semi-all-in-one clues respectively.

In an &lit. clue[7] (or all-in-one clue) the entire clue provides not only the definition (when read one way), but under a different interpretation also serves as the wordplay.
In future, I will mark such clues with a combined solid and dashed underline. Although this is a departure from past practice, it would seem to make more sense than using a dotted underline as I have in the past). Henceforth, the dotted underline will be reserved for cryptic definitions.
In a semi-&lit. clue (or semi-all-in-one clue), either:
  • the entire clue acts as the definition while a portion of the clue provides the wordplay; or
  • the entire clue acts as the wordplay while a portion of the clue provides the definition.
For these clues, I will mark the definition with a solid underline and the wordplay with a  dashed underline. This means that a portion of the clue may have a solid underline, a portion of the clue may have a dashed underline and a portion of the clue may have a combined solid and dashed underline.
One final clue type is what I characterize as a cryptic definition comprised of a precise definition combined with cryptic elaboration. For example, in DT 28560 (setter unknown) the following clue appears:
  •  26d   Heroic exploit, whichever way you look at it (4)
As the entire clue is a cryptic definition, it is marked with a dotted underline. The 'precise definition' is "heroic exploit" and is indicated by a solid underline.

Given the numeration, the precise definition could give rise to at least two solutions, DEED or FEAT. However, the 'cryptic elaboration' ("whichever way you look at it") indicates that the solution is a palindrome thereby immediately eliminating one of the two obvious choices.

Note that the part of the clue that I have called 'cryptic elaboration' does not provide a second independent route to the solution (as the wordplay would do in most other types of clue). Rather it merely provides a piece of additional information (elaboration) related to the 'precise definition'.

Again, this approach is a departure from past practice, but like the other changes mentioned previously is intended to remove inconsistencies in the way that I have been applying parsing markup to clues. The markup rules that I have been using until now evolved bit-by-bit over a long period of time resulting in some degree of internal inconsistency.

hide explanation

Across

1a   Swears // at cricket matches (7)

Test[5] (short for Test match)[5] denotes an international cricket or rugby match, typically one of a series, played between teams representing two different countries ⇒ the Test match between Pakistan and the West Indies.

5a   Criminal admires // weapon (7)

9a   Ray seen in river? On the contrary, // another fish (5)

The phrase "on the contrary" directs us to invert the logic of the statement preceding it. Thus, rather than "Ray seen in river" the reconstituted clue becomes "River seen in ray".



The bream[5] is a greenish-bronze deep-bodied freshwater fish native to Europe.

10a   Back exercises before I rehabilitate an // individual fond of food and wine (9)

"exercises" = PE (show explanation )

PE[5] is an abbreviation* for physical education.

* In my experience, phys ed[3,6,11,12,14] is the more common shortened form in North America.

hide explanation

An epicurean[5] is a person devoted to sensual enjoyment, especially that derived from fine food and drink.

11a   Local community // land chaps hated at heart (10)

Chap[3,4,11] is an informal British[5] or chiefly British[3] term for a man or boy (show more ) — although a term that is certainly not uncommon in Canada.

Chap[3,4,11] is a shortened form of chapman[3,4,11], an archaic term for a trader, especially an itinerant pedlar[a,b].

[a] Pedlar is the modern British spelling of peddler[14] which, in most senses, is a US or old-fashioned British spelling. The exception is in the sense of a dealer in illegal drugs which the Brits spell as drug peddler.
[b] The current meaning of chap[2] dates from the 18th century. In the 16th century, chap meant 'a customer'. The dictionaries do not explain how a shortened form of 'chapman' (pedlar) came to mean 'customer'.

hide explanation

12a   Christmas sometimes involves // a church service (4)

Mass[5] is the celebration of the Christian Eucharist, especially in the Roman Catholic Church.

14a   Party supporter? // Now and then (12)

18a   Disturbance after prisoners start to trash // building (12)

A ruction[3,4,11] is described variously as an uproar; a riotous, noisy or quarrelsome disturbance; a noisy quarrel; or row.

21a   Abandon // work after dark on a regular basis (4)

"work" = OP (show explanation )

In music, an opus[5] (plural opuses or opera) is a separate composition or set of compositions.

The abbreviation Op.[5] (also op.), denoting opus, is used before a number given to each work of a particular composer, usually indicating the order of publication. The plural form of Op. is Opp..

Opus[5] can also be used in a more general sense to mean an artistic work, especially one on a large scale ⇒ he was writing an opus on Mexico.

hide explanation

22a   Poor trip abroad, on // balance (10)

25a   A revolting slum? He's encapsulated old, // poor residence (9)

This "poor residence" could more clearly be described as a residence for the poor.

Almshouse[5,10,12] (also known as poorhouse)  is an historical British term for a house founded by charity, offering accommodation for poor people.

26a   Information about // style (5)

Gen[5] is an informal British term for information ⇒ you’ve got more gen on him than we have.

27a   Common sense keeps the Queen very // worried (7)

Nous[5] is an informal British term meaning common sense or practical intelligence ⇒ if he had any nous at all, he’d sell the film rights.

"the Queen" = ER (show explanation )

The regnal ciphers (monograms) of British monarchs are initials formed from the Latin version of their first name followed by either Rex or Regina (Latin for king or queen, respectively). Thus, the regnal cipher of Queen Elizabeth is ER[5] — from the Latin Elizabetha Regina.

hide explanation

"very" = V (show explanation )

The abbreviation v (or v.)[1,2,5,10] stands for very. Although this definition is found in most of my British dictionaries, it does not appear in any of my American dictionaries. Unfortunately no explanation is given as to the specific context in which one might encounter this usage. The only possibility that I can imagine is when combined with G as a grade of VG (very good) on school tests or assignments.

hide explanation

28a   Motorcycle passenger gets in this // drink (7)

A sidecar[5] is a cocktail of brandy and lemon juice with orange liqueur.

Down

1d   Mother upset by American president/'s/ surprise attack (6)

The reference here could relate to either of two American presidents — the father or the son (show more ).

George Bush[5] is an American Republican statesman, 41st President of the US 1989–93; full name George Herbert Walker Bush. He negotiated further arms reductions with the Soviet Union and organized international action to expel the Iraqis from Kuwait in 1990.

 George W. Bush[5] is an American Republican statesman, 43rd President of the US 2001–09; full name George Walker Bush. He is the son of George Bush. One of his first acts as President was to launch a ‘War on Terror’ against the Taliban regime in Afghanistan following the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon; he also ordered the invasion of Iraq in March 2003, maintaining that Saddam Hussein was developing chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons.

hide

2d   Have a meal in attempt /to get/ agreement (6)

3d   Unpretentiousness // taken for granted in outskirts of Salisbury (10)

Scratching the Surface
Salisbury[5] is a city in southern England, in Wiltshire. It is noted for its 13th-century cathedral, whose spire, at 123 m (404 ft), is the highest in England. Its diocese is known as Sarum, an old name for the city.

As alluded to by Rabbit Dave in Comment #2 on Big Dave's Crossword Blog, Salisbury is the city in which former Russian military officer and British spy Sergei Skripal, who acted as a double agent for the UK's intelligence services during the 1990s and early 2000s, was poisoned together with his daughter Yulia. As puzzles are likely prepared weeks — if not months — in advance of publication, this has to be seen as a bizarre coincidence as the incident occurred on March 4, 2018 — only four days before the appearance of this puzzle in the UK.

4d   Small Earl Grey? Maiden // put on kettle to make this (5)

Earl Grey[5] is a kind of China tea flavoured with bergamot (i) a cup of Earl Grey; (ii) Earl Grey tea.

Origin: Probably named after the 2nd Earl Grey (1764–1845).

"maiden"  = M (show explanation )

In cricket, a maiden[5], also known as a maiden over and denoted on cricket scorecards by the abbreviation m.[10], is an over* in which no runs are scored.

* An over[5] is a division of play consisting of a sequence of six balls bowled by a bowler from one end of the pitch, after which another bowler takes over from the other end.

hide explanation

5d   Hawking, perhaps, // is nicest organised before ornithologist's back (9)

Stephen Hawking[5] (1942–2018) was an English theoretical physicist. His main work has been on space–time, quantum mechanics, and black holes. He is also noted for his bestselling book A Brief History of Time (1988).

In yet another bizarre coincidence, Dr. Hawking passed away on March 14, 2018* — less than one week after this puzzle appeared in the UK.

* an occurrence to which the editors at Oxford Dictionaries have yet to twig

6d   Dan ignoring an alcoholic drink -- // beat that! (4)

Behind the Picture
Pommers illustrates his review with a photo of Irish singer and drummer Caroline Corr[7] , known to fans as the "Chick with Stick", of the Celtic folk rock band The Corrs. In addition to the drums, she plays the bodhrán, cajón, percussions and piano. Besides Caroline, the members of The Corrs are her siblings Andrea, Sharon, and Jim.

7d   Easily persuaded, // this writer is captivated by an expert (8)

Despite appearances to the contrary, the word "expert" becomes an adjective for cryptic purposes.

"this writer" = ME (show explanation )

It is a common cryptic crossword convention for the creator of the puzzle to use terms such as (the or this) compiler, (the or this) setter, (this) author, (this) writer, or this person to refer to himself or herself. To solve such a clue, one must generally substitute a first person pronoun (I or me) for whichever of these terms has been used in the clue.

hide explanation

8d   May denies reforms -- article's dismissed, /displaying/ imagination (5,3)

The phrase in one's mind's eye[5] denotes in one's imagination his face was very clear in her mind's eye.

Scratching the Surface
Theresa May[7] is the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and Leader of the Conservative Party, having served as both since July 2016. She is the second female Prime Minister and Conservative Party leader in the UK after Margaret Thatcher.

13d   Doctor argued once // fired up (10)

15d   Water plants inside these? (9)

Should one fail to read the word "water" as a verb, this clue is not very cryptic.

16d   Harmful drops from out of the blue? (4,4)

17d   Fashionable old // spy (8)

19d   Photograph pleasant, unfinished // meal outside (6)

20d   Make more attractive // organ with object on top (6)

23d   Diarist, we hear, /giving/ looks slyly (5)

To solve this clue, one must know the correct pronunciation of the surname of English diarist Samuel Pepys[5] (1633–1703) (show more ).

Samuel Pepys[5] (1633–1703) was an English diarist and naval administrator. He is particularly remembered for his "Diary" (1660–9), which describes events such as the Great Plague and the Fire of London.

hide

24d   Expression of triumphant surprise going round one // American state (4)
Key to Reference Sources: 

[1]   - The Chambers Dictionary, 11th Edition
[2]   - Search Chambers - (Chambers 21st Century Dictionary)
[3]   - TheFreeDictionary.com (American Heritage Dictionary)
[4]   - TheFreeDictionary.com (Collins English Dictionary)
[5]   - Oxford Dictionaries (Oxford Dictionary of English)
[6]   - Oxford Dictionaries (Oxford American Dictionary)
[7]   - Wikipedia
[8]   - Reverso Online Dictionary (Collins French-English Dictionary)
[9]   - Infoplease (Random House Unabridged Dictionary)
[10] - CollinsDictionary.com (Collins English Dictionary)
[11] - TheFreeDictionary.com (Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary)
[12] - CollinsDictionary.com (Webster’s New World College Dictionary)
[13] - MacmillanDictionary.com (Macmillan Dictionary)
[14] - CollinsDictionary.com (COBUILD Advanced English Dictionary)
Signing off for today — Falcon

Monday, July 16, 2018

Monday, July 16, 2018 — DT 28680 (Published Saturday, July 14, 2018)

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 28680
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Wednesday, March 7, 2018
Setter
Jay (Jeremy Mutch)
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 28680]
Big Dave's Crossword Blog Review Written By
2Kiwis
BD Rating
Difficulty - ★★ Enjoyment - ★★★★
Falcon's Experience
┌────┬────┬────┬────┬────┬────┬────┐
██████████████████████████████████
└────┴────┴────┴────┴────┴────┴────┘
Legend:
- solved without assistance
- incorrect prior to use of puzzle solving tools
- solved with assistance from puzzle solving tools
- solved with aid of checking letters provided by puzzle solving tools
- solved but without fully parsing the clue
- unsolved or incorrect prior to visiting Big Dave's Crossword Blog
- solved with aid of checking letters provided by solutions from Big Dave's Crossword Blog
- reviewed by Falcon for Big Dave's Crossword Blog
- yet to be solved
Notes
This puzzle appears on the Monday Diversions page in the Saturday, July 14, 2018 edition of the National Post.

Introduction

Sometimes one can sort out the overall structure of the wordplay correctly and still be unable to complete the solution due to an inability to see an obvious element. Such was the case at 19d where I inexplicably failed to spot a common four-letter tree despite already having two of the letters. Oh well, I suppose my electronic assistants had a good chuckle over that.

I invite you to leave a comment to let us know how you fared with the puzzle.

Notes on Today's Puzzle

This commentary is intended to serve as a supplement to the review of this puzzle found at Big Dave's Crossword Blog, to which a link is provided in the table above.

Click here for an explanation of conventions and symbols used in explaining the parsing of clues.


The purpose of this article is to explain the conventions and symbols that I use on this blog in explaining the parsing of clues.

Legend:

The following symbols are used in reviews:
  • "*" anagram
  • "~" sounds like
  • "<" indicates that the preceding letters are reversed
  • "( )" encloses contained letters
  • "_" replaces letters that have been deleted
  • "†" indicates that the word is present in the clue

The review of a clue takes the following general structure:

#a/d   Clue containing parsing markup (num*)

* num = numeration

Explanations pertaining to the wordplay (or first definition in a double definition)

(Horizontal separator)


Explanations pertaining to the definition (or second definition in a double definition) and solution.

Explanatory Box
An explanatory box provides additional information about the clue. In most cases this information will not necessarily help in solving the clue but provides information about the clue. In the case of the weekday syndicated Daily Telegraph puzzles, such information is often intended to help the North American solver appreciate how the clue may be perceived by a British solver. These boxes may also provide information on people, places, films, television programmes, works of art and literature, etc. mentioned in the clue.

Although the titles of these boxes will usually be drawn from a standard list, I do occasionally throw in a title specifically suggested by the subject at hand. The standard titles include:
  • Scratching the Surface - an explanation of the surface reading of the clue
  • Delving Deeper - in-depth information pertaining to a subject mentioned in an explanation
  • Behind the Picture - for weekday puzzles, information about an illustration found on Big Dave's Crossword Blog
  • What did he/she/they say? - for weekday puzzles, an explanation of a remark made in a review or comment on Big Dave's Crossword Blog
  • What are they talking about? - for weekday puzzles, an explanation of a discussion on Big Dave's Crossword Blog
One box that may provide information that could prove helpful in solving the clue is the following:
  • Here and There - for weekday puzzles, discusses words whose British meaning differs from their North American meaning

Note that there are many types of cryptic crossword clue and it is not my intention to exhaustively go through all of them here. I will only deal with clue types to the extent necessary to explain the conventions and symbols used on the blog. Furthermore, be aware that, in the world of cryptic crosswords, there seems to be an exception to every rule.

With one exception that I can think of, cryptic crossword clues provide two routes to the solution. These are commonly referred to as the definition and wordplay. While these terms serve well for most clues, there are some cases where the more formal terms of primary indication and subsidiary indication may be more appropriate.

Most cryptic crossword clues consist of a definition (primary indication) and wordplay (subsidiary indication). The definition may be a "precise definition" (a definition that is either taken straight from a dictionary or at least phrased in a non-misleading fashion) or it may be a "cryptic definition" (a definition misleadingly phrased so as to misdirect the solver either with respect to the meaning of the definition as a whole or to an incorrect sense of a word used in the definition).

The only type of clue that I can think of where there are not two ways of finding the solution are those in which the entire clue is a cryptic definition.
I identify precise definitions by marking them with a solid underline in the clue and cryptic definitions by marking them with a dotted underline.
In clues in which both definition and wordplay are present, the two parts of the clue combine to provide an overall meaningful statement (the surface reading) which usually bears no relationship to the underlying cryptic reading of the clue. In some cases, an extra word or phrase will be inserted into the clue to create a meaningful link between the definition and wordplay. I define clues which contain such a link word or link phrase as having an explicit link and clues which contain no link word or link phrase as having an implicit link.
I mark the existence of an explicit link by enclosing the link word or link phrase between forward slashes (/link/) and mark the existence of an implicit link with double forward slashes (//) positioned between the definition and wordplay.
Examples

A few examples may help to illustrate these points more clearly.

The first example is a clue used by Jay in DT 28573:

  • 4d   Fellow left work // a failure (4)
Here the definition is "a failure" which is marked with a solid underline to show that it is a precise definition. The wordplay parses as F (fellow; abbrev.) + L (left; abbrev.) + OP (work; abbrev. used in music) which gives us the solution F|L|OP. The double forward slashes (//) between the definition and wordplay indicate the existence of an "implicit link" between the two parts of the clue (that is, no extra words are inserted into the clue to form the link).

The second example is a clue used by Giovanni in DT 28575:
  • 29a   Female going to match // travels with mother in advance (10)
Here the definition "female going to match" is cryptic (the setter is attempting to misdirect our thoughts to a sports event rather than a marriage ceremony) and thus is marked with a a dotted underline. The wordplay is {RIDES (travels) + (with) MA (mother)} contained in (in) BID (advance) giving us the solution B(RIDES|MA)ID. As in the first example, the double forward slashes indicate the presence of an implicit link.

The third example is a clue used by Rufus is DT 28583:
  • 18d   Knight caught by misplaced big blow /is/ staggering (8)
Here the definition is "staggering" which is marked with a solid underline to show that it is a precise definition. The wordplay parses as N ([chess symbol for] knight) contained in (caught in) an anagram (misplaced) of BIG BLOW producing the solution WOBBLI(N)G. Finally, forward slashes mark the link word (/is/).
I also use distinctive underlining to mark &lit.[7] and semi-&lit. clues. Note that the reviewers on Big Dave's Crossword Blog generally prefer to refer to these clue types by the less pretentious names of all-in-one or semi-all-in-one clues respectively.

In an &lit. clue[7] (or all-in-one clue) the entire clue provides not only the definition (when read one way), but under a different interpretation also serves as the wordplay.
In future, I will mark such clues with a combined solid and dashed underline. Although this is a departure from past practice, it would seem to make more sense than using a dotted underline as I have in the past). Henceforth, the dotted underline will be reserved for cryptic definitions.
In a semi-&lit. clue (or semi-all-in-one clue), either:
  • the entire clue acts as the definition while a portion of the clue provides the wordplay; or
  • the entire clue acts as the wordplay while a portion of the clue provides the definition.
For these clues, I will mark the definition with a solid underline and the wordplay with a  dashed underline. This means that a portion of the clue may have a solid underline, a portion of the clue may have a dashed underline and a portion of the clue may have a combined solid and dashed underline.
One final clue type is what I characterize as a cryptic definition comprised of a precise definition combined with cryptic elaboration. For example, in DT 28560 (setter unknown) the following clue appears:
  •  26d   Heroic exploit, whichever way you look at it (4)
As the entire clue is a cryptic definition, it is marked with a dotted underline. The 'precise definition' is "heroic exploit" and is indicated by a solid underline.

Given the numeration, the precise definition could give rise to at least two solutions, DEED or FEAT. However, the 'cryptic elaboration' ("whichever way you look at it") indicates that the solution is a palindrome thereby immediately eliminating one of the two obvious choices.

Note that the part of the clue that I have called 'cryptic elaboration' does not provide a second independent route to the solution (as the wordplay would do in most other types of clue). Rather it merely provides a piece of additional information (elaboration) related to the 'precise definition'.

Again, this approach is a departure from past practice, but like the other changes mentioned previously is intended to remove inconsistencies in the way that I have been applying parsing markup to clues. The markup rules that I have been using until now evolved bit-by-bit over a long period of time resulting in some degree of internal inconsistency.

hide explanation

Across

1a   Document required for transferring estate // car? (10)

A conveyance[5] is a legal document effecting the transfer of property in the case of an unregistered title the wife's solicitors will submit a draft conveyance or transfer to the husband's solicitors.



Conveyance[5] is a humorous or formal term for a means of transport; a vehicle ⇒ adventurers attempt the trail using all manner of conveyances, including mountain bikes and motorcycles.

Scratching the Surface
Estate car[5] is the British name for a station wagon[5].

6a   Check // containers on the way back (4)

10a   Insomniac crackpot's accommodating // city (5)

Accra[5] is the capital of Ghana, a port on the Gulf of Guinea.

11a   Bank employee gets hold of artist -- very // representative (9)

"artist" = RA (show explanation )

A Royal Academician (abbreviation RA[10]) is a member of the Royal Academy of Arts[5] (also Royal Academy; abbreviation also RA[10]), an institution established in London in 1768, whose purpose is to cultivate painting, sculpture, and architecture in Britain. 

hide explanation

"very" = V (show explanation )

The abbreviation v (or v.)[1,2,5,10] stands for very. Although this definition is found in most of my British dictionaries, it does not appear in any of my American dictionaries. Unfortunately no explanation is given as to the specific context in which one might encounter this usage. The only possibility that I can imagine is when combined with G as a grade of VG (very good) on school tests or assignments.

hide explanation

12a   Advertise // concert, anticipating on-target earnings (7)

OTE[5] is short for on-target earnings[5], the expected salary of a salesperson, including bonuses and commission ⇒ on-target earnings are potentially very high.

Here and There
The British term prom[5] (or Prom) — short for promenade concert[5] — denotes a concert of classical music at which a part of the audience stands in an area without seating, for which tickets are sold at a reduced price. The most famous series of such concerts is the annual BBC Promenade Concerts (known as the Proms), instituted by Sir Henry Wood in 1895.

Prom[5], in the sense of a formal dance, is a North American expression.

13a   Comfort seamstress hugging returning // expert (7)

14a   Wise man touring America registers // snack food (7,5)

Sausage roll[5] is a British term for a piece of sausage meat wrapped in pastry and baked.

18a   Gives approval for // bit of bridge needing impressions (6-6)

In the card game bridge, a rubber[3] is:
  • a series of games of which two out of three or three out of five must be won to terminate the play
  • an odd game played to break a tie
21a   22/'s/ doctor needing season to start late (7)

The numeral "22" is a cross reference indicator (show more ).

To complete the clue, a solver must replace the cross reference indicator with the solution to the clue starting in the light* identified by the cross reference indicator.

The cross reference indicator may include a directional indicator but this is customarily done only in situations where there are both Across and Down clues originating in the light that is being referenced.

* light-coloured cell in the grid

hide

23a   Mass-market // power with uranium found in Arctic environment (7)

"power" = P (show explanation )

In physics, P[10] is a symbol used to represent power [among other things] in mathematical formulae.

hide explanation

The symbol for the chemical element uranium is U[5].

24a   Celebrities will eat fish -- // they flock together (9)

The ling[5,10] is any of a number of long-bodied edible marine fishes including various species of large East Atlantic fish related to the cod, in particular Molva molva, which is of commercial importance.



The starling[5] is a gregarious Old World songbird with a straight bill, typically with dark lustrous or iridescent plumage but sometimes brightly coloured. 

Delving Deeper
Although the starling[7] is not native to the Americas, having been introduced here, it competes for habitat with native birds and is considered to be an invasive species.

The European starling was purposefully introduced to North America in 1890–1891 by the American Acclimatization Society, an organization dedicated to introducing European flora and fauna into North America for cultural and economic reasons. Eugene Schieffelin, chairman at the time, allegedly decided all birds mentioned by William Shakespeare should be in North America. The bird had been mentioned in Henry IV, Part 1, and a hundred of them were released from New York's Central Park.

25a   Landowner // left daughter taking in broadcast (5)

In Scotland, a laird[5] is a person who owns a large estate.

26a   Votes against // hooter being sounded (4)

Here and There
In this clue, we encounter two different British meanings for the word "hooter" — one in the cryptic reading and another in the surface reading.

In Britain, hooter[3,5,10,11,12] is an informal term for a person's nose rather than — as in North America — (somewhat or sometimes) vulgar slang for a woman's breast (usually used in the plural).

Hooter[5] is a British term for:
  • a siren or steam whistle, especially one used as a signal for work to begin or finish
  • the horn of a motor vehicle
North Americans would likely think of a hooter[3] as being an owl.

27a   Happy to accept son is // dependable (10)

Down

1d   Vices /shown by/ person elected in short order (6)

"person elected" = MP (show explanation )

In Britain (as in Canada), a politician elected to the House of Commons is known as a Member of Parliament[10] (abbreviation MP[5]) or, informally, as a member[5].

hide explanation

2d   Food from Mexico // boy set up outside a church (6)

3d   Improve and take lad off /for/ a drink (10,4)

As shown by the discussion in the threads arising from Comment #3 and Comment #4 on Big Dave's Crossword Blog, this drink is one enjoyed not only by infants but those in other circumstances as well.

4d   Bill locks // ladies in green room, perhaps (9)

The green room[5] is a room in a theatre or studio in which performers can relax when they are not performing.

5d   Check weapon /for/ magnetism (5)

"check" = CH (show explanation )

In chess, ch.[10] is the abbreviation for check*.

* Check[5] means to move a piece or pawn to a square where it attacks (the opposing king)he moves his knight to check my king again.

hide explanation

7d   Story after count /will be/ revealing (8)

Tell[3,5,11] is an archaic term meaning to enumerate or count (the members of a group) ⇒ (i) the shepherd had told all his sheep; (ii) telling one's blessings; (iii) 16 windows, all toldTell[10] can also mean to count (votes), especially in a parliament.

8d   Left on boat with temperature missing elegance /shown by/ ocean dweller (8)

9d   They may hold up lines of communication (9,5)

Scratching the Surface
The phrase lines of communication[5] can denote:
  • the connections between an army in the field and its bases
  • hence, any system for communicating information or ideas bureaucracies are characterized by established lines of communication

15d   Couple propping up the bar at football? (9)

Scratching the Surface
Prop up the bar[5] is an informal expression meaning to spend a considerable time drinking in a pub Keith was propping up the bar and waving a £10 note at the landlady [proprietress of the pub].

16d   Takes unfair advantage of // Democrat taken in by jittery senator (6,2)

Like others (see the thread arising from Comment #1 on Big Dave's Crossword Blog), I initially wrote in TREADS ON. As I use a pencil to fill in the grid, no Tippex* was required — merely a good old-fashioned eraser.

* Tippex[5] (also Tipp-Ex) is a British trademark for a type of correction fluid.

"Democrat" = D (show explanation )

A Democrat[5] (abbreviation D[5]) is a member or supporter of the Democratic Party[5], one of the two main US political parties (the other being the Republican Party), which follows a broadly liberal programme, tending to support social reform and minority rights.

hide explanation



The phrasal verb trade on[5] means to take advantage of (something), especially in an unfair way the government is trading on fears of inflation.

17d   Stubborn, /and/ planning bad route (8)

19d   Plant // a tree across lake (6)

Turning an old adage on its head, it seems I couldn't see the tree for the forest.

An alpine[5] is a plant native to mountain districts, often suitable for growing in rock gardens ⇒ a collection of alpines and dwarf bulbs.

20d   Accept // honour (6)

22d   Percussionist /must have/ love to support band (5)

"love" = O (show explanation )

In tennis, squash, and some other sports, love[5] is a score of zero or nil ⇒ love fifteen. The resemblance of a zero written as a numeral (0) to the letter O leads to the cryptic crossword convention of the word "love" being used to clue this letter.

Although folk etymology has connected the word with French l'oeuf 'egg', from the resemblance in shape between an egg and a zero, the term apparently comes from the phrase play for love (i.e. the love of the game, not for money).

hide explanation



Ringo Starr[5] is an English rock and pop drummer; born Richard Starkey. He replaced Pete Best in the Beatles in 1962. After the band split up in 1970, he pursued a solo career as a musician, singer, and actor.
Key to Reference Sources: 

[1]   - The Chambers Dictionary, 11th Edition
[2]   - Search Chambers - (Chambers 21st Century Dictionary)
[3]   - TheFreeDictionary.com (American Heritage Dictionary)
[4]   - TheFreeDictionary.com (Collins English Dictionary)
[5]   - Oxford Dictionaries (Oxford Dictionary of English)
[6]   - Oxford Dictionaries (Oxford American Dictionary)
[7]   - Wikipedia
[8]   - Reverso Online Dictionary (Collins French-English Dictionary)
[9]   - Infoplease (Random House Unabridged Dictionary)
[10] - CollinsDictionary.com (Collins English Dictionary)
[11] - TheFreeDictionary.com (Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary)
[12] - CollinsDictionary.com (Webster’s New World College Dictionary)
[13] - MacmillanDictionary.com (Macmillan Dictionary)
[14] - CollinsDictionary.com (COBUILD Advanced English Dictionary)
Signing off for today — Falcon

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Saturday, July 14, 2018 — Say It In Verse

Introduction

Today's puzzle from Cox & Rathvon is a very poetic one.

I invite you to leave a comment to let us know how you fared with the puzzle.

Solution to Today's Puzzle

Falcon's Experience
┌────┬────┬────┬────┬────┬────┬────┐
███████████████████████████████████
└────┴────┴────┴────┴────┴────┴────┘
Legend:
- solved without assistance
- incorrect prior to use of puzzle solving tools
- solved with assistance from puzzle solving tools
- solved with aid of checking letters provided by puzzle solving tools
- solved but without fully parsing the clue
- yet to be solved

Click here for an explanation of conventions and symbols used in explaining the parsing of clues.


The purpose of this article is to explain the conventions and symbols that I use on this blog in explaining the parsing of clues.

Legend:

The following symbols are used in reviews:
  • "*" anagram
  • "~" sounds like
  • "<" indicates that the preceding letters are reversed
  • "( )" encloses contained letters
  • "_" replaces letters that have been deleted
  • "†" indicates that the word is present in the clue

The review of a clue takes the following general structure:

#a/d   Clue containing parsing markup (num*)

* num = numeration

Explanations pertaining to the wordplay (or first definition in a double definition)

(Horizontal separator)


Explanations pertaining to the definition (or second definition in a double definition) and solution.

Explanatory Box
An explanatory box provides additional information about the clue. In most cases this information will not necessarily help in solving the clue but provides information about the clue. In the case of the weekday syndicated Daily Telegraph puzzles, such information is often intended to help the North American solver appreciate how the clue may be perceived by a British solver. These boxes may also provide information on people, places, films, television programmes, works of art and literature, etc. mentioned in the clue.

Although the titles of these boxes will usually be drawn from a standard list, I do occasionally throw in a title specifically suggested by the subject at hand. The standard titles include:
  • Scratching the Surface - an explanation of the surface reading of the clue
  • Delving Deeper - in-depth information pertaining to a subject mentioned in an explanation
  • Behind the Picture - for weekday puzzles, information about an illustration found on Big Dave's Crossword Blog
  • What did he/she/they say? - for weekday puzzles, an explanation of a remark made in a review or comment on Big Dave's Crossword Blog
  • What are they talking about? - for weekday puzzles, an explanation of a discussion on Big Dave's Crossword Blog
One box that may provide information that could prove helpful in solving the clue is the following:
  • Here and There - for weekday puzzles, discusses words whose British meaning differs from their North American meaning

Note that there are many types of cryptic crossword clue and it is not my intention to exhaustively go through all of them here. I will only deal with clue types to the extent necessary to explain the conventions and symbols used on the blog. Furthermore, be aware that, in the world of cryptic crosswords, there seems to be an exception to every rule.

With one exception that I can think of, cryptic crossword clues provide two routes to the solution. These are commonly referred to as the definition and wordplay. While these terms serve well for most clues, there are some cases where the more formal terms of primary indication and subsidiary indication may be more appropriate.

Most cryptic crossword clues consist of a definition (primary indication) and wordplay (subsidiary indication). The definition may be a "precise definition" (a definition that is either taken straight from a dictionary or at least phrased in a non-misleading fashion) or it may be a "cryptic definition" (a definition misleadingly phrased so as to misdirect the solver either with respect to the meaning of the definition as a whole or to an incorrect sense of a word used in the definition).

The only type of clue that I can think of where there are not two ways of finding the solution are those in which the entire clue is a cryptic definition.
I identify precise definitions by marking them with a solid underline in the clue and cryptic definitions by marking them with a dotted underline.
In clues in which both definition and wordplay are present, the two parts of the clue combine to provide an overall meaningful statement (the surface reading) which usually bears no relationship to the underlying cryptic reading of the clue. In some cases, an extra word or phrase will be inserted into the clue to create a meaningful link between the definition and wordplay. I define clues which contain such a link word or link phrase as having an explicit link and clues which contain no link word or link phrase as having an implicit link.
I mark the existence of an explicit link by enclosing the link word or link phrase between forward slashes (/link/) and mark the existence of an implicit link with double forward slashes (//) positioned between the definition and wordplay.
Examples

A few examples may help to illustrate these points more clearly.

The first example is a clue used by Jay in DT 28573:

  • 4d   Fellow left work // a failure (4)
Here the definition is "a failure" which is marked with a solid underline to show that it is a precise definition. The wordplay parses as F (fellow; abbrev.) + L (left; abbrev.) + OP (work; abbrev. used in music) which gives us the solution F|L|OP. The double forward slashes (//) between the definition and wordplay indicate the existence of an "implicit link" between the two parts of the clue (that is, no extra words are inserted into the clue to form the link).

The second example is a clue used by Giovanni in DT 28575:
  • 29a   Female going to match // travels with mother in advance (10)
Here the definition "female going to match" is cryptic (the setter is attempting to misdirect our thoughts to a sports event rather than a marriage ceremony) and thus is marked with a a dotted underline. The wordplay is {RIDES (travels) + (with) MA (mother)} contained in (in) BID (advance) giving us the solution B(RIDES|MA)ID. As in the first example, the double forward slashes indicate the presence of an implicit link.

The third example is a clue used by Rufus is DT 28583:
  • 18d   Knight caught by misplaced big blow /is/ staggering (8)
Here the definition is "staggering" which is marked with a solid underline to show that it is a precise definition. The wordplay parses as N ([chess symbol for] knight) contained in (caught in) an anagram (misplaced) of BIG BLOW producing the solution WOBBLI(N)G. Finally, forward slashes mark the link word (/is/).
I also use distinctive underlining to mark &lit.[7] and semi-&lit. clues. Note that the reviewers on Big Dave's Crossword Blog generally prefer to refer to these clue types by the less pretentious names of all-in-one or semi-all-in-one clues respectively.

In an &lit. clue[7] (or all-in-one clue) the entire clue provides not only the definition (when read one way), but under a different interpretation also serves as the wordplay.
In future, I will mark such clues with a combined solid and dashed underline. Although this is a departure from past practice, it would seem to make more sense than using a dotted underline as I have in the past). Henceforth, the dotted underline will be reserved for cryptic definitions.
In a semi-&lit. clue (or semi-all-in-one clue), either:
  • the entire clue acts as the definition while a portion of the clue provides the wordplay; or
  • the entire clue acts as the wordplay while a portion of the clue provides the definition.
For these clues, I will mark the definition with a solid underline and the wordplay with a  dashed underline. This means that a portion of the clue may have a solid underline, a portion of the clue may have a dashed underline and a portion of the clue may have a combined solid and dashed underline.
One final clue type is what I characterize as a cryptic definition comprised of a precise definition combined with cryptic elaboration. For example, in DT 28560 (setter unknown) the following clue appears:
  •  26d   Heroic exploit, whichever way you look at it (4)
As the entire clue is a cryptic definition, it is marked with a dotted underline. The 'precise definition' is "heroic exploit" and is indicated by a solid underline.

Given the numeration, the precise definition could give rise to at least two solutions, DEED or FEAT. However, the 'cryptic elaboration' ("whichever way you look at it") indicates that the solution is a palindrome thereby immediately eliminating one of the two obvious choices.

Note that the part of the clue that I have called 'cryptic elaboration' does not provide a second independent route to the solution (as the wordplay would do in most other types of clue). Rather it merely provides a piece of additional information (elaboration) related to the 'precise definition'.

Again, this approach is a departure from past practice, but like the other changes mentioned previously is intended to remove inconsistencies in the way that I have been applying parsing markup to clues. The markup rules that I have been using until now evolved bit-by-bit over a long period of time resulting in some degree of internal inconsistency.

hide explanation

Across

1a   Idyllic poem // completed and recited (8)

PAST|ORAL — PAST (completed) + ORAL (recited; adjective)

5a   Everything in rotten // poem (6)

B(ALL)AD — ALL (everything) contained in (in) BAD (rotten)

10a   Part of the Arthurian // world (5)

_E|ARTH_ — hidden in (part of) thE ARTHurian

11a   Excited about copies // of a poet’s foot (9)

AN(APES)TIC — ANTIC (excited) containing (about) APES (copies; verb)

Anapestic (US spelling) or anapaestic[5] (British spelling) is a prosodic term denoting relating to a metrical foot consisting of two short or unstressed syllables followed by one long or stressed syllable.

12a   Investment strategy // I’d brought back: writing poetry (15)

DI<|VERSIFICATION — reversal (brought back) of ID + VERSIFICATION (writing poetry)

13a   Use // “the Poet of the Yukon” (7)

SERVICE — double definition

In the first definition, service[5] is used in the sense of the use which can be made of a machine ⇒ after many years of service, the pump had to be replaced as parts were no longer available.



Robert W. Service[7] (1874–1958) was a British-Canadian poet and writer who has often been called "the Bard of the Yukon". He is best known for his poems "The Shooting of Dan McGrew" and "The Cremation of Sam McGee", from his first book, Songs of a Sourdough (1907; also published as The Spell of the Yukon and Other Verses). His vivid descriptions of the Yukon and its people made it seem that he was a veteran of the Klondike Gold Rush, instead of the late-arriving bank clerk he actually was. Although his work remains popular, Service's poems were initially received as being crudely comical works.

14a   Slow // article by Italian poet (7)

AN|DANTE — AN ([indefinite] article) + (by) DANTE (Italian poet)

Dante[5] (1265–1321), full name Dante Alighieri, was an Italian poet. His reputation rests chiefly on The Divine Comedy (circa 1309–20), an epic poem describing his spiritual journey through Hell and Purgatory and finally to Paradise. His love for Beatrice Portinari is described in Vita nuova (circa 1290-4).

16a   Unfortunately, Eliot is // most unctuous (7)

OILIEST* —anagram (unfortunately) of ELIOT IS

Scratching the Surface
T. S. Eliot[5] (1888–1965) was an American-born British poet, critic, and playwright; full name Thomas Stearns Eliot. Associated with the rise of literary modernism, he was established as the voice of a disillusioned generation by The Waste Land (1922). Four Quartets (1943) revealed his increasing involvement with Christianity. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1948.

19a   Seems happy about one // poet’s devices (7)

S(I)MILES — SMILES (seems happy) containing (about) I ([Roman numeral for] one)

21a   Poet // revised “red alert” message (5,3,7)

{EDGAR LEE MASTERS}* — anagram (revised) of RED ALERT MESSAGE

Edgar Lee Masters[6] (1869–1950) was a US writer. His verse is collected most notably in the Spoon River Anthology (1915). He also wrote biographies and novels.

24a   “Green haystacks” /in/ short poems (9)

LIME|RICKS — LIME (green) + RICKS (haystacks)

25a   Get into // the gist of Auden tercet (5)

_EN|TER_ — hidden in (the gist of) AudEN TERcet

Scratching the Surface
W. H. Auden[5] (1907–1973) was a British-born poet, resident in America from 1939; full name Wystan Hugh Auden. Look, Stranger! (1936) and Spain (1937, on the Civil War) secured his position as a leading left-wing poet. He was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for The Age of Anxiety (1947).



Tercet[5] is a prosodic term for a set or group of three lines of verse rhyming together or connected by rhyme with an adjacent triplet.

26a   Creating measures /of/ note, work as a bard? (6)

DO|SING — DO (note) + SING (work as a bard)

To my mind, both the wordplay and the solution are more than a bit tenuous. However, I cannot see how they can be anything else.

Do[6] (US spelling) or doh (British spelling) is a musical term that denotes (in solmization) the first and eighth note of a major scale or the note C in the fixed-do system.

While bards apparently recited poems to the accompaniment of musical instruments*, I don't know that they actually sang. Perhaps they were an early counterpart to modern-day rappers.

* Historically, a bard[11] was a person who composed and recited epic poems, often while playing the harp, lyre, or the like.




In the solution, I can only guess that dose[3] is being used in the sense of to give or prescribe (medicine) in specified amounts. The act of prescribing would involve the specification of the measure (or amount) of the substance to be administered.

27a   Writer of fairy tales // mistakenly ensnared (8)

ANDERSEN* — anagram (mistakenly) of ENSNARED

Hans Christian Andersen[5] (1805–1875) was a Danish author. He is famous for his fairy tales, published from 1835, such as ‘The Snow Queen’, ‘The Ugly Duckling’, and ‘The Little Match Girl’. Although rooted in Danish folklore, the stories were also shaped by Andersen's own psychological alienation.

Although a prolific writer of plays, travelogues, novels and poems, Andersen[7] is best remembered for his fairy tales.

Down

1d   Going through apple a day, // make a case (5)

_PLE|A|D_ — hidden in (going through) apPLE A Day

2d   Shudder about Rome’s first // priest, at times (7)

SH(R)IVER — SHIVER (shudder) containing (about) R (Rome's first [initial letter])

Shrive[5] is an archaic term denoting (of a priest) to hear the confession of, assign penance to, and absolve none of her chaplains knew English or French enough to shrive the king.

3d   White rose altered // in a different way (9)

OTHERWISE* — anagram (altered) of WHITE ROSE

4d   Sinful desire /for/ one variant on diamonds (7)

A|VAR|ICE — A (one) + VAR (variant; abbrev.) + ICE ([slang term for] diamonds)

6d   Sports centre // reflected an age (5)

{ARE|NA}< — reversal (reflected) of {AN () + ERA (age)}

7d   Valiant stranger // from a Baltic republic (7)

LATVIAN* — anagram (stranger) of VALIANT

8d   Wine holders /in/ bars catching fire (9)

DE(CAN)TERS — DETERS (bars) containing (catching) CAN (fire; dismiss from employment)

Deter[5] is used in the sense of to prevent the occurrence of ⇒ strategists think not only about how to deter war, but about how war might occur.

9d   Damage in a // seaside attraction (6)

MAR|IN|A — MAR (damage) + IN (†) + A (†)

13d   Sled, going around rundown abode, // cleared snow (9)

S(HOVEL)LED — SLED (†) containing (going around) HOVEL (rundown abode)

15d   Stop a public display // from the Syrian capital (9)

DAM|A|SCENE — DAM (stop) + A (†) + SCENE (public display)

A Damascene[5] is a native or inhabitant of Damascus, the capital of Syria.

17d   Vegetables/’/ sticky secretion found in sediment (7)

LE(GUM)ES — GUM (sticky secretion) contained in (found in) LEES (sediment)

18d   Lengthen certain exhibits // from that place (6)

THENCE — hidden in (exhibits) lengTHEN CErtain

19d   Dumbbells carried by // Bart or Lisa (7)

SIMPS|ON — SIMPS (dumbbells; simpletons) + ON (carried by)

The Simpsons[7] is an American family animated sitcom created by Matt Groening for the Fox Broadcasting Company. The series is a satirical depiction of a middle class American lifestyle epitomized by its family of the same name, which consists of parents Homer and Marge and their children Bart, Lisa, and Maggie. The show is set in the fictional town of Springfield and parodies American culture, society, television, and many aspects of the human condition.

20d   Character in Hamlet // relates badly (7)

LAERTES* — anagram (badly) of RELATES

Laertes[7] is a character in William Shakespeare's play Hamlet. His name is taken from the father of Odysseus in Homer's Odyssey. Laertes is the son of Polonius and the brother of Ophelia. In the final scene, he kills Hamlet with a poisoned sword to avenge the deaths of his father and sister, for which he blamed Hamlet. While dying of the same poison, he implicates King Claudius.

22d   Second half of rare Kurosawa film // broadcast again (5)

RE|RAN — RE (second half of [RA]RE) + RAN (Kurosawa film)

Ran[7] (Japanese for "chaos" or "turmoil") is a 1985 period tragedy film directed, edited and co-written by Japanese filmmaker Akira Kurosawa. The plot of the film derives from Shakespeare's King Lear and includes segments based on legends of the daimyō [feudal lord] Mōri Motonari. The film stars Tatsuya Nakadai as Hidetora Ichimonji, an aging Sengoku-period warlord who decides to abdicate as ruler in favor of his three sons.

23d   Father North/’s/ warning (5)

SIRE|N — SIRE (father) + N (north)

Epilogue

To some extent, every across clue can be tied to poets or poetry.
Key to Reference Sources: 

[1]   - The Chambers Dictionary, 11th Edition
[2]   - Search Chambers - (Chambers 21st Century Dictionary)
[3]   - TheFreeDictionary.com (American Heritage Dictionary)
[4]   - TheFreeDictionary.com (Collins English Dictionary)
[5]   - Oxford Dictionaries (Oxford Dictionary of English)
[6]   - Oxford Dictionaries (Oxford American Dictionary)
[7]   - Wikipedia
[8]   - Reverso Online Dictionary (Collins French-English Dictionary)
[9]   - Infoplease (Random House Unabridged Dictionary)
[10] - CollinsDictionary.com (Collins English Dictionary)
[11] - TheFreeDictionary.com (Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary)
[12] - CollinsDictionary.com (Webster’s New World College Dictionary)
[13] - MacmillanDictionary.com (Macmillan Dictionary)
[14] - CollinsDictionary.com (COBUILD Advanced English Dictionary)
Signing off for today — Falcon