Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Tuesday, May 19, 2015 — DT 27663

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 27663
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Wednesday, December 3, 2014
Jay (Jeremy Mutch)
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 27663]
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
The National Post has skipped DT 27662 which was published in The Daily Telegraph on Tuesday, December 2, 2014.


The National Post may have skipped this puzzle, but regular readers of this blog did not miss out. The skipped puzzle appeared as a Bonus Puzzle in yesterday's blog posting.

You should not have worked up much of a sweat with today's puzzle. However, brace yourself for tomorrow.

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   Worriedly describes lacking credit // in any case (7)

5a   Notice // joker following almost all of drama (7)

One might arrive at the solution through either of the two following routes:

A joker[5] is a playing card, typically bearing the figure of a jester, used in some games as a wild card.

Card[5] is an informal, dated term for a person regarded as odd or amusing ⇒ He laughed: ‘You’re a card, you know’.

9a   To put one's foot down /is/ a duty of sorts (5)

Stamp duty[10] (or stamp tax) is a tax on legal documents, publications, etc, the payment of which is certified by the attaching or impressing of official stamps.

10a   Lead, say /from/ corrupt copper? (4,5)

11a   Torrent /causing/ rambling group to lose leader during day trip (10)

12a   Request // that cuts enjoyment by half (4)

14a   Short // acts perhaps rewritten with depth (4-8)

18a   On form // demographic group? (7,5)

A form[7] is a class or grouping of students in a school. The term is used predominantly in the United Kingdom, although some schools, mostly private, in other countries also use the title. Pupils are usually grouped in forms according to age and will remain with the same group for a number of years, or sometimes their entire school career.

Forms are normally identified by a number such as "first form" or "sixth form". A form number may be used for two year groups and differentiated by the terms upper and lower. The sixth form is the senior form of a school, and is usually divided into two year groups: the lower sixth and upper sixth. If there is more than one form for each year group they will normally be differentiated by letters, e.g., "upper four B", "lower two Y". Schools do not follow a consistent pattern in naming forms.

21a   Reality /produced by/ fine performance (4)

22a   Shield // design of touch screen with no end of bother (10)

25a   Dish /for/ bad loser in lawsuit? (9)

26a   Name /for/ savings scheme account? (5)

In the UK, an ISA[5] (individual savings account) is a scheme allowing individuals to hold cash, shares, and unit trusts free of tax on dividends, interest, and capital gains; in 1999 it replaced both personal equity plans (PEPs) and tax-exempt special savings accounts (TESSAs).

27a   Talk about // seconds on field event (7)

28a   People who understand // Australians? (7)

Digger[5] is an informal Australian and New Zealand term for a man, especially a private soldier (often used as a friendly form of address) ⇒ how are you, Digger?. [The term dates from the early 20th century and World War I: from digger 'miner', reinforced by association with the digging of trenches on the battlefields].


1d   A clergyman/'s/ quiet work under British institute (6)

In music, Op.[5] (also op.) is an abbreviation meaning opus (work). It is used before a number given to each work of a particular composer, usually indicating the order of publication.

B.[10] is the abbreviation for British.

I[1] (or I.) is the abbreviation for institute.

2d   Feels hurt /seeing/ pictures included in text message (6)

SMS[5], Short Message (or Messaging) Service, is a system that enables mobile phone users to send and receive text messages.

3d   Tactful // service might follow this (10)

I think this may qualify as a double definition.

4d   Weep over unprotected Nero/'s/ grave (5)

The word CRYPT did cross my mind initially.

Scratching the Surface
Nero[5] (AD 37-68) was Roman emperor 54-68; full name Nero Claudius Caesar Augustus Germanicus. Infamous for his cruelty, he wantonly executed leading Romans. His reign witnessed a fire which destroyed half of Rome in 64.

5d   Care following delivery /of/ mail to part of South Africa? (9)

Natal[5] is a former province of South Africa, situated on the east coast. Having been a Boer republic and then a British colony, Natal acquired internal self-government in 1893 and became a province of the Union of South Africa in 1910. It was renamed KwaZulu-Natal in 1994. [From Latin Terra Natalis 'land of the day of birth', a name given by Vasco da Gama in 1497, because he sighted the entrance to what is now Durban harbour on Christmas Day].

6d   Crown // service protecting millions (4)

7d   One leapt high, /as/ a Springbok (8)

A springbok[10] is an antelope, Antidorcas marsupialis, of semidesert regions of southern Africa, which moves in leaps exposing a patch of white erectile hairs on the rump that are usually covered by a fold of skin.

Scratching the Surface
The capitalization of "Springbok" might mislead one into believing that the setter is referring to a sportsman rather than an animal. The Springboks[5] are the South African international rugby union team.

8d   Boring, when crossing road /for/ slow people (8)

Contrary to the assertion by the 2Kiwis, the abbreviation for road in not inserted between the two components of the charade, but rather in the middle of the latter one.

13d   Wiping out // call after service bill (10)

15d   Mysterious ghost ship/'s/ most interesting parts (4,5)

16d   Do we act differently hugging female, /being/ false? (3-5)

17d   Flowers // reptile habitually consumes (8)

19d   Entertain // disheartened rabble with good beer (6)

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

20d   Cuts /due to/ arrest on board ship (6)

Nick[5] is an informal British term meaning to arrest (someone) ⇒ Stuart and Dan got nicked for burglary.

In Crosswordland, you will find that a ship is almost invariably a steamship, the abbreviation for which is SS[10]. Thus "on board ship" is code for 'contained in SS'.

23d   Completely turn // Jude's heart, capturing writer (5)

Scratching the Surface
If this is intended to be a reference to the Thomas Hardy character, then the allusion is pretty obscure.

24d   Nation // secured by future prospects on the rise (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)
Signing off for today — Falcon


  1. 4d
    weep is SOB
    unprotected Nero, omit 1st and last letters.

    1. I'm not sure what you intended with your comment. Did you perhaps think that I failed to find the correct solution? CRYPT was merely a word that initially popped into my mind as it had five letters -- the first three of which are a synonym for "weep". I did eventually find the correct solution.

      On my blog, I do not provide detailed explanations of all the clues since that is already done on Big Dave's Crossword Blog. My aim is merely to provide additional information to supplement what can be found on the British blog -- in particular, to explain British terms that may not be familiar to North American readers.