Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Wednesday, April 8, 2015 — DT 27623

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 27623
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Friday, October 17, 2014
Giovanni (Don Manley)
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 27623]
Big Dave's Crossword Blog Review Written By
Deep Threat
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


I would say that today's puzzle is a touch more gentle than we typically see from Giovanni. In particular, I didn't detect any especially obscure words.

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   Amount said /to be/ a great deal in 7 (4)

The numeral "7" is a cross reference indicator directing the solver to insert the solution to clue 7d in its place to complete the clue. The directional indicator is typically omitted in situations such as this where only a single clue starts in the square that is being cross-referenced.

The Chambers Dictionary defines some[1] as being an indefinite pronoun meaning (1) an indefinite part of the whole number or quantity; (2) a certain (undetermined) one or certain (undetermined) ones; (3) a great deal (North American); (4) a good deal more, especially in the phrase 'and then some' (especially North American); (5) one, one or other (obsolete).

3a   Record contains poem // in encrypted format (5)

6a   Good bowler /maybe/ steps down in India (4)

The abbreviation G[10] for good likely relates to its use in grading school assignments or tests.

Bowler[5] (also bowler hat) is a chiefly British name for a man’s hard felt hat with a round dome-shaped crown. The North American name for this item of apparel is derby[5] — said to arise from American demand for a hat of the type worn at the Epsom Derby.

In South Asia, a ghat[5] is a flight of steps leading down to a river.

8a   A recreant subtly falsified // stories of old (10,5)

The Canterbury Tales[7] (Middle English: Tales of Caunterbury) is a collection of over 20 stories written in Middle English by Geoffrey Chaucer at the end of the 14th century, during the time of the Hundred Years' War. The tales (mostly written in verse, although some are in prose) are presented as part of a story-telling contest by a group of pilgrims as they travel together on a journey from Southwark to the shrine of Saint Thomas Becket at Canterbury Cathedral. The prize for this contest is a free meal at the Tabard Inn at Southwark on their return.

9a   Voice /has/ minimal energy after fourth section of drama (6)

10a   High-up official /in/ orange (8)

11a   Continental link /to reveal/ winner of international song contest? (8)

The Eurovision Song Contest[7], often shortened to ESC, Eurovision, or EuroSong, is an annual song competition held primarily among the member countries of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) since 1956.

Eurostar[5] (trademark) is the high-speed passenger rail service that links London with various European cities via the Channel Tunnel.

13a   Tom's forty winks? (6)

15a   Businessperson // embraced by retired artist in retro exhibition (6)

The wordplay parses as a reversal (in retro exhibition) hidden in (embraced by) retiRED ARTist.

17a   What begins with capital // punishment (8)

19a   Aussie person very good on street /as/ 'adult' entertainer (8)

Ripper[10] is an informal mainly Australian and New Zealand term for a fine or excellent person or thing.

Behind the Video
The video shows a sketch by the British comic duo Morecambe and Wise[7] (also known as Eric and Ernie). Eric Morecambe (1926-1984) and Ernie Wise (1925–1999) were a British comic double act, working in variety, radio, film and most successfully in television. Their partnership lasted from 1941 until Morecambe's death in 1984. They have been described as "the most illustrious, and the best-loved, double-act that Britain has ever produced".

21a   Tax // cut (6)

22a   Ten land mines get sorted out -- // wires being pulled apart maybe? (15)

23a   Educationists /making/ plots (4)

BEd[5] is the abbreviation for Bachelor of Education.

24a   Legendary Greek returning /as/ a wanderer (5)

Damon[5] was a legendary Syracusan of the 4th century BC whose friend Pythias (also called Phintias) was sentenced to death by Dionysius I. Damon stood bail for Pythias, who returned just in time to save him, and was himself reprieved.

25a   Boss /shows/ incomplete education (4)


1d   Californian city has no place for old // religious ceremony (9)

Sacramento[5] is the state capital of California, situated on the Sacramento River to the north-east of San Francisco; population 463,794 (est. 2008).

2d   Holy person tackled by underground worker /in/ church (7)

Minster[5] is a British term for a large or important church, typically one of cathedral status in the north of England that was built as part of a monastery ⇒ York Minster.

3d   Begin to go down after fish /and/ chips (9)

"Chips" is a traditional nickname for a carpenter, especially aboard sailing vessels.

4d   Daughter attached to stranger // member of the band? (7)

Rum[5] is a dated informal British term meaning odd or peculiar ⇒ it’s a rum business, certainly.

5d   Senior member /is/ university lecturer, you gathered (5)

A don[10] is a member of the teaching staff at a university or college, especially at Oxford or Cambridge.

6d   Eager aunt has broken // promise (9)

7d   A maiden, Heather, /in/ a foreign land (7)

... a foreign land from a British perspective.

In cricket, a maiden[5], also known as a maiden over, (abbreviation M)[5] 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.

Erica[5] denotes a plant of the genus Erica (family Ericaceae), especially (in gardening) heather.

12d   Grandfathers? // Folks with a lot of experience (3-6)

If the solution were to be enumerated (3,6), it would denote, as Deep Threat puts it, "ancient clocks".

13d   Secret // prisoner 'closed up', as you might say (9)

14d   Quietly begrudged /being/ put on show (9)

Piano[3,5] (abbreviation p[5]), is a musical direction meaning either (as an adjective) soft or quiet or (as an adverb) softly or quietly.

16d   Sailor climbing up on ship missing the last // rope of rigging (7)

Tar[5] is an informal, dated term for a sailor. The term, which dates from the 17th century, is perhaps an abbreviation of tarpaulin, which was also used as a nickname for a sailor at that time.

Ratlines[5] are a series of small rope lines fastened across a sailing ship’s shrouds like the rungs of a ladder, used for climbing the rigging ⇒ I scrambled back down the ratlines.

17d   Country // chap is held up outside biblical city (7)

Ur[5] is an ancient Sumerian city formerly on the Euphrates, in southern Iraq. It was one of the oldest cities of Mesopotamia, dating from the 4th millennium BC, and reached its zenith in the late 3rd millennium BC. Ur[7] is considered by many to be the city of Ur Kasdim mentioned in the Book of Genesis as the birthplace of the Hebrew patriarch Abraham.

Suriname[5] (also Surinam) is a country on the northeastern coast of South America; population 481,300 (est. 2009); languages, Dutch (official), Creoles, Hindi; capital, Paramaribo. Former name (until 1948) Dutch Guiana. Colonized by the Dutch and the English from the 17th century, Suriname became fully independent in 1975. The population is descended largely from African slaves and Asian workers brought in to work on sugar plantations; there is also a small American Indian population.

18d   Most unsophisticated // one detached from foolish vanities (7)

20d   Introduce // national leader (5)

Vladimir Putin[5] is a Russian statesman, President 2000-2008 and 2012 to present, Prime Minister 2008–2012.
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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