Friday, March 27, 2015

Friday, March 27, 2015 — DT 27615

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 27615
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Wednesday, October 8, 2014
Jay (Jeremy Mutch)
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 27615]
Big Dave's Crossword Blog Review Written By
BD Rating
Difficulty - ★★★ Enjoyment - ★★★
Falcon's Experience
- 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


Jay rarely disappoints — and today is no exception. I did need to fall back on assistance from my electronic helpers to get me across the finish line.

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.

Primary indications (definitions) are marked with a solid underline in the clue; subsidiary indications (be they wordplay or other) are marked with a dashed underline in all-in-one (&lit.) clues, semi-all-in-one (semi-&lit.) clues and cryptic definitions. Explicit link words and phrases are enclosed in forward slashes (/link/) and implicit links are shown as double forward slashes (//). Definitions presented in blue text are for terms that appear frequently.


1a   Leave drink, taking in small // talk (6)

5a   Irregular // role at home around South America (8)

9a   Time working on board /getting/ marine life forms (8)

10a   Schemes incorporating island/'s/ flat areas (6)

11a   Fellow listener a few // dread (8)

The definition is an adjective.

F[2] is the abbreviation for Fellow (of a society, etc). For instance, it is found in professional designations such as FRAIC (Fellow of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada).

12a   Hoped /to see/ West End cast (6)

Even after I had the correct solution, it took a while for the penny to drop on the wordplay.

The West End of London (more commonly referred to as simply the West End) is an area of Central London containing many of the city's major tourist attractions, shops, businesses, government buildings and entertainment venues (including the commercial West End theatres). The West End is largely contained within the City of Westminster (one of the 32 London boroughs).

The use of the term 'West End' began in the early 19th century to describe fashionable areas to the west of Charing Cross [which is considered to mark the centre of London].

While the City of London [not to be confused with the city of London] or the Square Mile is the main business and financial district in London, the West End is the main commercial and entertainment centre of the city. It currently ranks as the most expensive location in the world in which to rent office space, beating Tokyo in December 2013.

The boundaries of the West End coincide closely with those of the W1 postcode area[7] [postcode being the British counterpart of the Canadian postal code or American zip code].

The wordplay is WI (West End; W1 [postcode] with the 1 expressed as a Roman numeral) + SHED (cast).

13a   Expanded // by serving lager in terminal (8)

15a   She gets disheartened during American // functions (4)

17a   Why some did less? (4)

At Comment #4 on Big Dave's blog, dutch says "11a and 17a are very nice clues but i wasn’t sure the answer quite matched the right part of speech". Several others make similar comments regarding 11a, but comments from Expat Chris and Deep Threat would appear to allay any concern about that clue. However, no one else appears to have any misgivings regarding 17a. To me, the answer to "Why some did less?" should be IDLENESS rather than IDLE.

19a   Story about Right /creates/ a state of conflict (8)

20a   Creature/'s/ show of hesitation in front of pit (6)

21a   Person lacking rank -- // one arriving around beginning of week (8)

A commoner[5] is one of the ordinary or common people, as opposed to the aristocracy or royalty ⇒ this is the story of the commoner who married a king.

22a   Superficial impression made on a student // of teeth (6)

The cryptic crossword convention of L meaning learner or student arises from the L-plate[7], a square plate bearing a sans-serif letter L, for learner, which must be affixed to the front and back of a vehicle in various countries (including the UK) if its driver is a learner under instruction.

23a   What identifies quality /of/ target by hawk? (8)

Like the 2Kiwis, I remembered the mark from a previous puzzle.

A kite[10] is any of several species of diurnal bird of prey of the family Accipitridae (hawk family) typically having a long forked tail and long broad wings and usually preying on small mammals and insects.

In the UK, Kitemark[5] (trademark) denotes an official kite-shaped mark on goods approved by the British Standards Institution.

24a   Clothes and weapon hidden in loo (8)

Loo[5] is an informal British term for a toilet.

The gents[5] is an informal British term for a men's public toilet.

25a   Company director's first German // buffer (6)

Buffer[5] is an informal British term for an elderly man who is considered to be foolishly old-fashioned, unworldly, or incompetent ⇒ a distinguished old buffer.


2d   Lies low, forced to cover lake /and/ fuel sources (3,5)

3d   Odd items perhaps /of/ washing hung out -- here's why? (8)

I'm including the word "perhaps" in the definition. It has to go somewhere!

4d   Post Office worker pockets black // book that's an earner (9)

5d   Excitedly contact speaker, importing fine // sweets (10,5)

Having deduced that the solution is an anagram, and having eventually determined all the checking letters, I arranged the remaining letters of the fodder in what I considered to be their most likely order and then verified the existence of what turned out to be a candy (rather than a dessert) on Wikipedia.

F[5] is an abbreviation for fine, as used in describing grades of pencil lead [a usage that Oxford Dictionaries Online surprisingly characterizes as British].

In Britain, a sweet[5] is a small shaped piece of confectionery made with sugar ⇒ a bag of sweets. In other words, sweets would be candy[5] to us in North America and we would refer to a sweet as a piece of candy.

Pontefract cakes[5] (also known as Pomfret cakes and Pomfrey cakes) are a type of small, roughly circular black sweet [candy] measuring approximately 2 cm in diameter and 4 mm thick, made of liquorice, originally manufactured in the Yorkshire town of Pontefract, England.

Health Advisory
Healthcare professionals have warned against overindulgence in liquorice after a 56-year-old woman was admitted to hospital following an overdose. The woman consumed about 200g daily leading to dangerously low potassium levels and subsequent muscle failure. The European Commission recommends limiting consumption of the active ingredient, glycyrrhizic acid, to 100 mg or less per day.

6d   Bound to include everybody, // agreed (7)

7d   Rebellious youth // almost broke the boss (8)

Skint[5] is an informal British term denoting (of a person) having little or no money available I’m a bit skint just now.

A skinhead[5] is a young man of a subculture characterized by close-cropped hair and heavy boots, often perceived as aggressive.

8d   Made enquiries on one case of vehicle/'s/ sudden fall (8)

14d   Strange -- // credit is short in support of German war machine (9)

Tick[5] (used in the phrase on tick) is an informal British term meaning credit ⇒ the printer agreed to send the brochures out on tick. The term apparently originates as a short form for ticket in the phrase on the ticket, referring to an IOU or promise to pay.

An Enigma machine[7] was any of several electro-mechanical rotor cipher machines used in the twentieth century for enciphering and deciphering secret messages. Enigma was invented by the German engineer Arthur Scherbius at the end of World War I. Early models were used commercially from the early 1920s, and adopted by military and government services of several countries, most notably Nazi Germany before and during World War II. Several different Enigma models were produced, but the German military models are the most commonly recognised.

What did they say?
In their review, the 2Kiwis refer to Enigma as the [m]achine that Bletchley Park worked on.
Bletchley Park[7], in Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, was the central site of the United Kingdom's Government Code and Cypher School (GC&CS), which during the Second World War regularly penetrated the secret communications of the Axis Powers – most importantly the German Enigma and Lorenz ciphers.

15d   Poorly grounded // person not expected to win (8)

16d   Auditor /of/ former dictator and heir oddly disappearing (8)

This auditor is not a listener but someone who goes over the books with a fine-tooth comb.

Idi Amin Dada[7] (c. 1925–2003) was the third President of Uganda, ruling from 1971 to 1979. As commander of the Ugandan Army, he led a military coup in January 1971 that deposed Milton Obote. In 1977, when Britain broke diplomatic relations with Uganda, Amin declared he had defeated the British and added "CBE", for "Conqueror of the British Empire", to his title.

17d   Posted // popular class edition (8)

In Britain, a form[5] is a class or year in a school, usually given a specifying number. Thus the fifth form would be the British linguistic counterpart (although, I believe, not the scholastic equivalent) to the fifth grade in North America and Form One would be akin to saying Grade One.

To keep someone posted is to keep them informed.

18d   Rising stink contained by West Coast city that is // a feature of North America (4,4)

19d   Showy display /from/ cool and distant European (7)
Key to Reference Sources: 

[1]   - The Chambers Dictionary, 11th Edition
[2]   - Search Chambers - (Chambers 21st Century Dictionary)
[3]   - (American Heritage Dictionary)
[4]   - (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] - (Collins English Dictionary)
[11] - (Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary)
Signing off for today — Falcon

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