Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily TelegraphDT 27237
Publication Date in The Daily TelegraphTuesday, July 23, 2013
Link to Full ReviewBig Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 27237]
Big Dave's Review Written ByDeep Threat
|Difficulty - ★★||Enjoyment - ★★★|
█ - 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
█ - unsolved or incorrect prior to visiting Big Dave's blog
█ - reviewed by Falcon for Big Dave's blog
Notes*One regular visitor to Big Dave's Crossword Blog guesses that the setter might be Shamus (Philip Marlow).
We see several instances of a particular clue structure in today's puzzle — a structure to which I apply a bit of a different interpretation than does Deep Threat in his review.
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. The underlined portion of the clue is the definition.
1a Nouveau riche weekend mountaineers? (6,8)
9a A new Guide leader in camp -- that's touching (7)
Tent and camp are especially synonymous when used as verbs ⇒
I enjoy nothing more than tenting in the mountains.
Often the contraction "that's" will merely serve as a link between the wordplay and the definition. However, that is not necessarily the case in this clue. If one supposes the solution to be a noun, the definition must be "[something] that's touching" — where the word "something" is understood from the context of the clue. For similar clue constructions, see 24a and 13d.
Granted, tangent can also be an adjective, so one might argue (as Deep Threat appears to do) that the word "that's" is merely a link word and that the definition is simply "touching". However, the equivalent term to "touching" would be "tangent to" rather than "tangent" ⇒
the line is touching the circle/the line is tangent to the circle.
10a Hugs and fondles awkwardly (7)
11a Plant is absorbing intermittent rain (4)
12a Breathing apparatus reports air is polluted (10)
14a American character rejected being adopted by half-German bloke (6)
Bloke is British slang for a man ⇒
he’s a nice bloke.
In Britain, geezer is a slang term that can be applied to any man ⇒
he strikes me as a decent geezer. In the UK, the word appears not to carry the same negative connotation that it does in North America, where it is a derogatory term for an old man, especially an eccentric one[3,4,11].
15a Restoration must be carried out to save rich collection of memorabilia (8)
17a Best old-fashioned vehicles making a comeback (8)
18a Worried 1d's reversed for example (2,4)
It took a long time to realize that "1d" is not a cross-reference indicator in this clue.
21a What WI members do in a queue? (7,3)
The solution to this clue brought a chuckle.
The Women's Institute (WI) is an organization of women, especially in rural areas, who meet regularly and participate in crafts, cultural activities, and social work. Now worldwide, it was first set up in Ontario, Canada, in 1897, and in Britain in 1915.
22a Northern relative reported protester (4)
It seems that natives of Liverpool (considered Northerners in Britain) pronounce "auntie" as ANT-EE rather than AAHN-TEE or AWN-TEE. Methinks that Liverpudlians are taking over the world as these days one almost never hears "aunt" pronounced any way other than ANT. I was always lectured that an "ant" is a six-legged insect and not your mother's sister.
24a Most of horizon's visible between twin Appalachian peaks (that's in America!) (7)
A peak may be either the topmost part or the foremost part of an object. The peak of a mountain is its highest point but the peak of a cap is its front edge. Thus, the setter uses the phrase "Appalachian peak" to deceptively denote the front (first letter) of the word Appalachian.
In Britain, a peak is a stiff brim at the front of a cap. This is a usage, I believe, that is not entirely foreign to North Americans. However, we would be more apt to call it a bill or a visor.
The definition is "[someplace] that's in America" — in which the word "someplace" is understood from the context of the clue. The structure of this clue is similar to that of 9a and 13d.
The Appalachians is a mountain system of eastern North America, stretching from Quebec and Maine in the North to Georgia and Alabama in the South. Its highest peak is Mount Mitchell in North Carolina, which rises to 2,037 m (6,684 ft).
25a A diner's fresh fish (7)
26a IT consultant's small Y-fronts shrink (7,7)
The stem is the main upright timber or metal piece at the bow of a ship, to which the ship’s sides are joined at the front end [as in the expression "from stem to stern"].
Y-fronts is a British trademark for men’s or boys' underpants with a branching seam at the front in the shape of an upside-down Y.
1d Appropriate to go topless following start of sunny session (7)
2d Secrecy and infidelity can't upset when love comes in (15)
In tennis, squash, and some other sports, love 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.
3d Lincoln died how we all hope to go? (4)
Abraham Lincoln (1809–1865) was an American Republican statesman, 16th President of the US 1861-5. His election as President on an anti-slavery platform helped precipitate the American Civil War; he was assassinated shortly after the war ended. Lincoln was noted for his succinct, eloquent speeches, including the Gettysburg Address of 1863.
Lincoln likely did die "abed", in Petersen House across the street from Ford's Theatre after lying in a coma for some nine hours after he was shot. Hardly "how we all hope to go".
4d Tailor's craft (6)
I was originally prepared to go along with Deep Threat's characterization of this clue as a double definition. However, the more I thought about it, the more uncomfortable I became with that approach. I have chosen to classify it as cryptic definition. As I see it, we are looking for a type of craft that has some specific attribute that would associate it with a tailor. Such a craft would be a CUTTER (since a tailor is a cutter of fabric).
However, the words "tailor" and "cutter" are not synonymous — which, in my opinion, means that this clue is not a double definition. Rather, being a cutter is an attribute (a specific job function) of a tailor. It does not encompass the totality of being a tailor (who must perform many other functions in the course of his work).
In mathematical terms, being a cutter is a necessary but not sufficient condition to establish the existence of a tailor. Or, put another way, all tailors are cutters, but not all cutters are tailors.
On the other hand, Deep Threat might well argue that I'm being overly pedantic and that the words "tailor" and "cutter" are close enough in meaning to be considered synonyms within the bounds of cryptic licence.
5d Amateur still getting to grips with old piano (8)
Piano[3,5] (abbreviation p), is a musical direction meaning either (as an adjective) soft or quiet or (as an adverb) softly or quietly.
6d Live? Shot previously (10)
7d Gravity specifically averted senility somehow (8,7)
In chemistry, relative density (also known as specific gravity) is the ratio of the density of a substance to the density of a standard, usually water for a liquid or solid, and air for a gas.
8d Old god who's Irish mostly (6)
In Egyptian mythology, Osiris is a god originally connected with fertility, husband of Isis and father of Horus. He is known chiefly through the story of his death at the hands of his brother Seth and his subsequent restoration to a new life as ruler of the afterlife.
13d One hairstyle after another -- on the street that's exceptionally cool (10)
Here we encounter another example of a clue where the contraction "that's" does not merely serve as a link between the wordplay and the definition. The solution can be nothing other than a noun, so the definition must be "[something] that's exceptionally cool" — where the word "something" is understood from the context of the clue.
16d Trumpet virtuoso's profession (8)
17d Nothing suitable for the whole family to see? Disney's upset following ban (6)
The setter uses the phrase "for the whole family to see" to clue the letter U. Under the British system of film classification a U (for 'universal') rating indicates that a film is suitable "for all the family" (or at least for children over 4 years of age).
Walt Disney (1901–1966) was an American animator and film producer. He made his name with the creation of cartoon characters such as Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy, and Pluto. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937) was the first full-length cartoon feature film with sound and colour. Other notable films: Pinocchio (1940), Dumbo (1941), and Bambi (1942).
19d Noted Forster in hospital department (7)
E. M. Forster (1879–1970) was an English novelist and literary critic; full name Edward Morgan Forster. His novels, several of which have been made into films, include A Room with a View (1908) and A Passage to India (1924).
From my experience, I would almost say that the Crosswordland Hospital consists solely of the ear, nose and throat (ENT) department.
20d Sweat heartily in sizzling sauna causing distaste (6)
I suppose distaste as expressed by
Frankly, I find your puerile humour to be sickening.
23d Mariachi's entertaining song (4)
Key to Reference Sources:Signing off for today — Falcon
 - The Chambers Dictionary, 11th Edition
 - Search Chambers - (Chambers 21st Century Dictionary)
 - TheFreeDictionary.com (American Heritage Dictionary)
 - TheFreeDictionary.com (Collins English Dictionary)
 - Oxford Dictionaries (Oxford Dictionary of English)
 - Oxford Dictionaries (Oxford American Dictionary)
 - Wikipedia
 - Reverso Online Dictionary (Collins French-English Dictionary)
 - Infoplease (Random House Unabridged Dictionary)
 - CollinsDictionary.com (Collins English Dictionary)
 - TheFreeDictionary.com (Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary)