Monday, May 11, 2015

Monday, May 11, 2015 — DT 27657

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 27657
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Wednesday, November 26, 2014
Jay (Jeremy Mutch)
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 27657]
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


Today's puzzle was reviewed on Big Dave's Crossword Blog by the 2Kiwis — a couple from New Zealand. They describe the puzzle as "quite gentle" — and I won't disagree.

The discussion at Comment #10 on Big Dave's blog revolves around cricket. Apparently, England were playing in Sri Lanka at the time. However, most of the discussion concerns an incident on November 25, 2014 (the day before this puzzle appeared in the UK) during a match between two Australian teams in Sydney in which Australian cricketer Phillip Hughes[7] was struck by a bowled ball. He was to die from his injuries on November 27, 2014 (the day after this puzzle appeared in the UK), three days short of his 26th birthday.[7]

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   Armed cops patrolling around university, /offering/ protection for building (4,6)

Dampcourse[5] (also damp-proof course) is a British term for a layer of waterproof material in the wall of a building near the ground, to prevent rising damp.

6a   Large // container holding sulphur (4)

The symbol for the chemical element sulphur is S[5].

10a   Damage following cold // spell (5)

11a   Collective // charge applied by my Post Office (9)

I would say that the wordplay parses as RATE (charge) following (applied by) {COR (my) + PO (Post Office)}. However, the 2Kiwis would have it as RATE (charge applied) following (by) {COR (my) + PO (Post Office)}. Take your pick — six of one and half a dozen of the other.

My[5] is used in various expressions of surprise (i)my goodness!; (ii) oh my!.

Cor[5] is an informal British exclamation expressing surprise, excitement, admiration, or alarm ⇒ Cor! That‘s a beautiful black eye you’ve got!.

What did they say?
In their review, the 2Kiwis direct that we "Start with a synonym for my that is often followed by blimey".
Blimey[5] (also cor blimey) is an informal British exclamation used to express surprise, excitement, or alarm.

Yet another variant is gorblimey[5], an informal British expression of surprise or indignation.

Corporate[5] here means of or shared by all the members of a group the service emphasizes the corporate responsibility of the congregation.

12a   Controversial // rationale behind energy (7)

Although the 2Kiwis remark that this is "not the most usual definition for controversial", it is the first to be listed by Oxford Dictionaries Online. Emotive[5] means arousing or able to arouse intense feeling (i) animal experimentation is an emotive subject; (ii) the issue has proved highly emotive.

13a   Claimed free treatment as a result of this (7)

I find the parsing of this clue to be rather problematic. However, I will diverge ever so slightly from the interpretation offered by the 2Kiwis. I believe this may be a semi-all-in-one clue which has wordplay embedded in the definition (or, as scchua — a former blogger on Big Dave's site — would have said, wordplay intertwined with definition). I see the wordplay as being an anagram (free treatment) of CLAIMED. The entire clue serves as the definition, denoting something for which one could claim free treatment. One would undoubtedly be entitled to make a claim for a MEDICAL under the UK's National Health Service[7].

14a   Distressing // movement during trial (5-7)

Movement[5] is used in the sense of a change or development (i) the movement towards greater sexual equality; (ii) movements in the underlying financial markets.

18a   Practical details /of/ purchases from a hardware shop (4,3,5)

21a   Foreigners who may help // couple in Australia (2,5)

The International Vehicle Registration (IVR) code for Australia is AUS[5].

23a   Scottish dance cancelled, // say, without hesitation (4,3)

24a   Product of original thinking? (9)

25a   A good half of ground /must get/ trouble (5)

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

Aggro[5] (abbreviation of aggravation or aggression) is an informal British term for (1) aggressive, violent behaviour ⇒ they do not usually become involved in aggro or (2) problems and difficulties ⇒ he didn’t have to deal with aggro from the desk clerk.

26a   Lively // spot across river (4)

27a   He's a deeply disturbed // person wanting his bed (10)


1d   Detailed // what wages would be after deductions? (6)

"Detailed" is used in a whimsical cryptic crossword sense meaning having the tail removed — based on an analogy with words such as deflowered or defrocked.

2d   Blame a downpour engulfing // an area of arable land (6)

3d   Sympathies, /as result of/ European allowances supporting junior chefs (14)

A commis[5] (plural same) is a junior chef.

4d   Disturbed Cuban leader releases graduate // without authorisation (9)

5d   Small stuff! // Go and take a running jump (5)

Take a running jump[10] is an informal British contemptuous expression of dismissal used to tell somebody rudely to go away(i) Why don't you take a running jump!; (ii) I hope she tells her to go and take a running jump.

I am familiar with a somewhat similar expression ⇒ Why don't you go and take a flying leap!.

7d   Lawless /and/ hurried uprising in a smart environment (8)

8d   People welcoming new logo /for/ study of divinity (8)

9d   Responsible // angle both hid by rambling (7,3,4)

To be left holding the baby[5] (or North American be left holding the bag) is an informal expression meaning to be left with an unwelcome responsibility, typically without warning.

15d   Mexican border // trip accommodating old relative (3,6)

The Rio Grande[5] is a river of North America which rises in the Rocky Mountains of southwestern Colorado and flows 3,030 km (1,880 miles) generally south-eastwards to the Gulf of Mexico, forming the US-Mexico frontier from El Paso to the sea.

16d   Occupies // son depressed by popular custom (8)

17d   Second best finished // rest during journey (8)

19d   Turn and stare at // source of information (6)

What did they say?
In their review, the 2Kiwis comment that Google is "Often the third member of our team for solving Toughies".
The Toughie is a cryptic crossword that appears in The Daily Telegraph on Tuesday through Friday. It gets its name from the fact that it is intended to be a more difficult puzzle than the regular cryptic crossword that appears in The Daily Telegraph on Monday through Saturday — the latter puzzle being the one that the National Post carries in syndication.

20d   Provide // a fine crossing over river (6)

F[5] is an abbreviation for fine, as used in describing grades of pencil lead.

22d   Snap, // though // calm (5)

The fact that this is a triple definition escaped me — as it did the 2Kiwis. However, it was not to get by Gazza (see Comment #8 on Big Dave's blog).

A still[5] is an ordinary static photograph as opposed to a motion picture, especially a single shot from a cinema film ⇒ (i)film stills; (ii) stills photography.
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


  1. Managed without help, despite the obscure synonyms and Britishisms. All in all, a bit tougher than two stars, imo. I didn't spot the triple definition either.

    Welcome back, btw. I love visiting battlefields and have dragged my long-suffering wife around Gettysburg, Gallipoli and the Normandy beaches. She always asks what on earth we are doing there. Can't explain it.

  2. Hi Richard,

    Thanks for the welcome back.

    Sleep patterns are gradually readjusting. I'm slowly working my way through all the tasks that I need to catch up on. The European weather -- cold, wet and windy -- seems to have followed me home.