Friday, January 22, 2016

Friday, January 22, 2016 — DT 27887

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 27887
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Saturday, August 22, 2015
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 27887 – Hints]
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 27887 – Review]
Big Dave's Crossword Blog Review Written By
Big Dave (Hints)
crypticsue (Review)
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
As this was a Saturday "Prize Puzzle" in Britain, there are two entries related to it on Big Dave's Crossword Blog — the first, posted on the date of publication, contains hints for selected clues while the second is a full review issued following the entry deadline for the contest. The vast majority of reader comments will generally be found attached to the "hints" posting with a minimal number — if any — accompanying the full review.


I screwed up at 25a, not being able to sort out the wordplay. The initial thought that this was the meaning of "screw up" at play in 1d meant it took me a very long time to figure out how this phrase could possibly equate to "knot".

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.


7a   Change // name in secret (7)

9a   Circular // meadow left mowed (7)

10a   Stop men /finding/ female sorcerer's home (5)

"men" = OR (show explanation )

In the British armed forces, the term other ranks[5] (abbreviation OR[5]) refers to all those who are not commissioned officers.

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Endor[7] was a Canaanite city in Galilee where the Witch of Endor lived. The Witch of Endor[7], also known as the Medium of Endor, was a medium who apparently summoned the prophet Samuel's spirit, at the demand of King Saul of the Kingdom of Israel in the First Book of Samuel, chapter 28:3–25.

11a   New doctrine, Eastern, // not understood by many (9)

I would say that the solution is an apt description of itself.

12a   Plain sailing? // Right on! (15)

13a   One villain after power /in/ a boat (7)

"power" = P (show explanation )

In physics, P[10] is a symbol used to represent power (among other things).

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A pirogue[5] is a long, narrow canoe made from a single tree trunk, especially in Central America and the Caribbean.

16a   Circle /with/ sawn-off firearm? (7)

19a   Just as important, // like the anchor leg runner in a relay team? (4,3,3,5)

23a   A piece of cake // children eat gluttonously (4,5)

24a   Warning // a member about lake (5)

25a   Open, // following on (7)

I failed to see the wordplay here. All I can say in my defence is "Doh!" at my dimness.

26a   Small crown /made of/ gold, one shown in court (7)

"gold" = OR (show explanation )

Or[5] is gold or yellow, as a heraldic tincture.

hide explanation

"court" = CT (show explanation )

Ct[2] is the abbreviation for Court in street addresses — and possibly in other contexts as well.

hide explanation

A coronet[5] is a small or relatively simple crown, especially as worn by lesser royalty and peers or peeresses.


1d   Team on board increase // knots (6,2)

"on board" = 'contained in SS' (show explanation )

In Crosswordland, you will find that a ship is almost invariably a steamship, the abbreviation for which is SS[10]. Thus a phrase such as "aboard ship" or "on board ship" — or, as today, merely "on board" — is Crosswordland code for 'contained in SS'.

hide explanation

Screw up[5] is not being used in the informal, chiefly North American sense of to completely mismanage or mishandle a situation ⇒ I’m sorry, Susan, I screwed up. Rather it denotes (of the muscles of one’s face or around one’s eyes) to contract, typically so as to express emotion or because of bright light ⇒ his freckled face screwed up with childish annoyance.

2d   Head of laboratory getting paid /for/ knowledge (8)

3d   Stiffener /produced by/ celebrity chef? Not half! (6)

4d   Flag /of/ British queen and king (6)

"British" = B (show explanation )

B.[10] and Br.[10] are abbreviations for British.

hide explanation

Anne[7] (1665–1714) became Queen of England, Scotland and Ireland on 8 March 1702. On 1 May 1707, under the Acts of Union, two of her realms, the kingdoms of England and Scotland, united as a single sovereign state, the United Kingdom of Great Britain. She continued to reign as Queen of Great Britain and Ireland until her death.

"king" = R (show explanation )

Rex[5] (abbreviation R[5]) [Latin for king] denotes the reigning king, used following a name (e.g. Georgius Rex, King George) or in the titles of lawsuits (e.g. Rex v. Jones, the Crown versus Jones — often shortened to R. v. Jones).

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5d   Tired out? Completely, // everything considered (3,2,3)

6d   Visit // nurse after a time (6)

8d   Depths /of/ drain in need of repair (5)

9d   Cryptic clue fair? Without a // match! (7)

Lucifer[5,10] (an archaic term according to Oxford Dictionaries) is another name for a friction match, a type of match struck by rubbing it on a rough surface. It was originally a trade name for a match manufactured in England in the 19th century.

14d   Tenant /and/ I study in peace (8)

15d   See hunt abandoned -- // wax lyrical? (7)

As an anagram indicator, abandoned[10] is used as an adjective meaning unrestrained or uninhibited ⇒ wild, abandoned dancing.

17d   French satirist /showing/ anger after dance (8)

The volta[5] is a quick-moving Italian dance popular during the 16th and 17th centuries.

Voltaire[5] (1694–1778) was a French writer, dramatist, and poet; pseudonym of François-Marie Arouet. He was a leading figure of the Enlightenment, and frequently came into conflict with the Establishment as a result of his radical views and satirical writings. Notable works: Lettres philosophiques (1734) and the satire Candide (1759).

18d   I'm dividing possessions /for/ valuation (8)

19d   Enjoys duck // in this manner (4,2)

"duck" = O (show explanation )

In cricket, a duck[5] is a batsman’s score of nought [zero] ⇒ he was out for a duck. This is similar to the North American expression goose egg[5] meaning a zero score in a game.

In British puzzles, "duck" is used to indicate the letter "O" based on the resemblance of the digit "0" to this letter.

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20d   Dog used in hunting // wild beasts (6)

A basset[5] (also basset hound) is a sturdy hunting dog of a breed with a long body, short legs, and long drooping ears.

21d   Duty // elsewhere on diamonds (6)

22d   A profit // once more (5)
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 comment:

  1. Flummoxed, once again, by three clues in the upper left. So frustrating to solve 90 percent of a puzzle and then hit a brick wall.