Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Tuesday, March 1, 2016 — DT 27926

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 27926
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Wednesday, October 7, 2015
Jay (Jeremy Mutch)
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 27926]
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


I found this puzzle to be one in which it was extremely difficult to establish a foothold. As I recall, on the first read through I solved none of the across clues only one or two of the down clues. However, I was able to gradually work outward from those starting points and the pace of progress picked up as more and more of the grid was filled in.

On another note, Big Dave's Crossword Blog was down for most of yesterday. I first noticed it back on line late in the afternoon (Ottawa time). Hopefully, the teething problems of moving to a new hosting service have now been worked out.

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   Author not getting credit /for/ site worth developing in Greece (5-6)

"Greece" = GR (show explanation )

The International Vehicle Registration (IVR) code for Greece is GR[5].

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9a   A doctor in trouble? Quite the opposite /for/ a lover! (7)

Mire[5] is a complicated or unpleasant situation from which it is difficult to extricate oneself ⇒ the service is sinking in the mire of its own regulations.

10a   Annie, perhaps, /is/ in favour of going back, writing endlessly (6)

Hand[5] denotes a person's handwriting he inscribed the statement in a bold hand.

Little Orphan Annie[7] was a daily syndicated American comic strip created by Harold Gray (1894–1968). The strip made its debut on August 5, 1924 in the New York Daily News. It ranked number one in popularity in a Fortune poll in 1937.

The plot follows the wide-ranging adventures of Annie, her dog Sandy and her benefactor Oliver "Daddy" Warbucks. The strip attracted adult readers with political commentary that targeted (among other things) organized labor, the New Deal and communism.

Following Gray's death in 1968, several artists drew the strip and, for a time, "classic" strips were rerun. Little Orphan Annie inspired a radio show in 1930, film adaptations by RKO in 1932 and Paramount in 1938 and a Broadway musical Annie in 1977 (which was adapted into a film of the same name three times, one in 1982, one in 1999 and another in 2014). The strip's popularity declined over the years; it was running in only 20 newspapers when it was cancelled on June 13, 2010.

12a   Offer, but lacking time to welcome American // consumer (3,4)

13a   Right after evidence of injury -- that is // provoking more fear (7)

14a   Character /getting/ a share of the takings? (5)

Theta[5] is the eighth letter of the Greek alphabet (Θ, θ).

15a   Air /of/ Athens, say, to be cleaned up (3,6)

This air would be of interest to a musicologist rather than a climatologist.

17a   Regard with suspicion // detective's financial status (9)

"detective" = DI (show explanation )

A detective inspector (DI[5]) is a senior police officer in the UK. Within the British police, inspector[7] is the second supervisory rank. It is senior to that of sergeant, but junior to that of chief inspector. Plain-clothes detective inspectors are equal in rank to their uniformed counterparts, the prefix 'detective' identifying them as having been trained in criminal investigation and being part of or attached to their force's Criminal Investigation Department (CID).

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20a   Actor disheartened by key // sacrifices made here (5)

22a   Even-tempered, // just having dropped it (7)

24a   Thoroughly // at home with department before end of month (2,5)

25a   This drumming /is/ rubbish, as well (6)

Tat[5] is an informal British term for tasteless or shoddy clothes, jewellery, or ornaments ⇒ the place was decorated with all manner of gaudy tat.

26a   Heading off unable to feel anger /or/ annoyance (7)

27a   Hearing shooter, goalie /is/ one to put himself between opponents (11)

Piece[5] is an informal, chiefly North American term for a firearm.

Goalie[5] is an informal term for goalkeeper or goaltender. From a British perspective, goaltender[5] is a North American term for a goalkeeper, especially in ice hockey.

Keeper[5] is short for goalkeeper[5] (a player in soccer or field hockey whose special role is to stop the ball from entering the goal) or wicketkeeper[5] (in cricket, a fielder stationed close behind a batsman's wicket).


2d   A rash is developing -- /it's/ the hot paste (7)

Harissa[5] is a hot sauce or paste used in North African cuisine, made from chilli [British spelling of chili] peppers, paprika, and olive oil.

3d   Editor chasing almost certain voting system /is/ shocked (9)

Proportional representation[5] (abbreviation PR) is an electoral system in which parties gain seats in proportion to the number of votes cast for them ⇒ PR has been a success in Germany.

4d   Court officials finally protecting Germany/'s/ trees (5)

"Germany" = D (show explanation )

The International Vehicle Registration (IVR) code for Germany is D[5] [from German Deutschland].

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5d   Charge /that's a result of/ the setter's cheap shot (7)

"setter's" = IM (show explanation )

It is a common cryptic crossword convention for the creator of the puzzle to use terms such as (the or this) compiler, (the or this) setter, (this) author, (this) writer, or this person to refer to himself or herself. To solve such a clue, one must generally substitute a first person pronoun (I or me) for whichever of these terms has been used in the clue.

Today, the setter has made the scenario slightly more complicated by combining "setter" with the verb "to be" producing "setter's" (a contraction of "setter is") which must be replaced by "I'm" (a contraction of "I am").

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In Britain, impeach[5] means to charge (someone) with treason or another crime against the state whereas, in the US, impeach means to charge (the holder of a public office) with misconduct.

6d   Steering clear of // no one, except on the way up (7)

7d   Patient analyses? (4,7)

8d   Spot // daughter in the embrace of self-satisfied head of ethics (6)

11d   Hope we will broadcast, /but/ in Tibet it's an article of faith (6,5)

A prayer wheel[5] is a small revolving cylinder inscribed with or containing prayers, a revolution of which symbolizes the repetition of a prayer, used by Tibetan Buddhists.

16d   Characteristic // honour given to mate -- not me! (9)

18d   Type of dog // food (7)

19d   British in origin, independent, cold /and/ mechanical (7)

"British" = B (show explanation )

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

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20d   Bail due to be fixed // in hearing (7)

21d   Work in which // this covers the head (3,3)

"work" = OP (show explanation )

In music, an opus[5] (plural opuses or opera) is a separate composition or set of compositions.

The abbreviation Op.[5] (also op.), denoting opus, is used before a number given to each work of a particular composer, usually indicating the order of publication. The plural form of Op. is Opp..

Opus[5] can also be used in a more general sense to mean an artistic work, especially one on a large scale ⇒ he was writing an opus on Mexico.

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23d   Order up fine // read? (1-4)

"order" = OBE (show explanation )

OBE[5] is the abbreviation for Officer of the Order of the British Empire.

The Order of the British Empire[5] is an order of knighthood applicable to the United Kingdom and certain Commonwealth realms which was instituted in 1917 and is divided into five classes, each with military and civilian divisions. The classes are: Knight or Dame Grand Cross of the Order of the British Empire (GBE), Knight or Dame Commander (KBE/DBE), Commander (CBE), Officer (OBE), and Member (MBE). The two highest classes entail the awarding of a knighthood.

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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

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