Monday, April 25, 2016

Monday, April 25, 2016 — DT 27980

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 27980
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Wednesday, December 9, 2015
Jay (Jeremy Mutch)
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 27980]
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 27979 which was published in The Daily Telegraph on Tuesday, December 8, 2015.


I thought that Jay upped the intensity level of this puzzle a notch or two causing me to call in my electronic assistants to help finish it off.

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   Plant // register found in monastery (10)

A friary[5] is a building or community occupied by or consisting of friars[5], members of any of certain religious orders of men, especially the four mendicant orders (Augustinians, Carmelites, Dominicans, and Franciscans).

The fritillary[5] is any of numerous species of Eurasian plant of the lily family, with hanging bell-like flowers.

6a   According to reports, makes // pots (4)

10a   Rise /and/ dress (3,2)

In their review, the 2Kiwis show this as a double definition. However, that cannot be the case as the numeration given (3,2) does not match the second part of the clue. In the sense of a costume or outfit, British dictionaries show the solution spelled as get-up[1,5,10] (3-2) while American dictionaries favour getup[3,11] (5).

11a   At night, // a student follows rap act on the radio (9)

"learner" = L (show explanation )

The cryptic crossword convention of L meaning learner or student arises from the L-plate[7], a square plate bearing a sans-serif letter L, for learner, which must be affixed to the front and back of a vehicle in various jurisdictions (including the UK) if its driver is a learner under instruction.

hide explanation

12a   Overrode protests from the East, revealing // missile (7)

13a   Put the focus on // narrow opening full of grass (7)

14a   Spread /that goes on/ freshly-made tea bun in golf club? (6,6)

18a   Holds tight, grabbing striker /to get/ this dish (12)

Chitterlings[5] are the smaller intestines of a pig, cooked as food. I must say that I can only recall ever having heard them referred to by their informal name, chitlins[5].

21a   Continuously // do better after Nancy's refusals (3-4)

Nancy[5] is a city in northeastern France, chief town of Lorraine; population 107,434 (2006).

The French word for no is non[8].

23a   Ever so sorry about Black // Watch! (7)

Scratching the Surface
The Black Watch[5] is another name for the Royal Highland Regiment.

In the early 18th century the term Watch was given to certain companies of irregular troops in the Highlands; Black Watch referred to some of these companies raised circa 1729–30, distinguished by their dark-coloured tartan.

24a   Tricky situation /created by/ a couple of toadstools added to stew (3,6)

Hotpot[5] is a British term for a casserole of meat and vegetables, typically with a topping of sliced potato.

25a   Get used to // hurt? Not Jack! (5)

"jack" = J (show explanation )

J[5] is an abbreviation for jack that is used in describing play in card games.

hide explanation

26a   Top player/'s/ pace, but no power (4)

"power" = P (show explanation )

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

hide explanation

27a   Writing on ruin of new // coach (4-2-4)

A four-in-hand[5] is a vehicle with four horses driven by one person.


1d   Escapes with no end of managerial // scraps (6)

2d   Bury North's // unpaid employee (6)

Scratching the Surface
Bury[7] [pronounced berryalthough not by the locals according to Gazza in a review on Big Dave's blog] is a town in Greater Manchester, England.

Bury North[7] is a borough constituency in Greater Manchester, represented in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom.

3d   Carrying out // a limpet mine -- not to be disturbed! (14)

Scratching the Surface
A limpet[5] is any of numerous species of marine mollusc which has a shallow conical shell and a broad muscular foot, found clinging tightly to rocks.

A limpet mine[5] is a mine designed to be attached magnetically to a ship’s hull and set to explode after a certain time.

4d   Freeholder // depressed with road around river (9)

A freeholder[5] is the owner of a freehold[5], a piece of land or property held  by freehold[5] — a chiefly British term for the permanent and absolute tenure of land or property with freedom to dispose of it at will.

5d   Upsets // those people who are steadfast (5)

7d   Calls about telephone going up, /and/ locks (8)

8d   Pay must include university and time // promoting health (8)

Salutary[5] is an archaic term meaning health-giving ⇒ the salutary Atlantic air.

9d   Thought process provoked by a car salesman? (4-10)

Autosuggestion[5,10] (or auto-suggestion[1]) is the hypnotic or subconscious adoption of an idea which one has originated oneself.

15d   French standard that's differently upheld in Italy? (9)

A tricolour[5] is a flag with three bands or blocks of different colours, especially the French national flag with equal upright bands of blue, white, and red.

16d   Answer therefore must include prison /for/ plant (8)

The acanthus[5] is any of many species of herbaceous plant or shrub with bold flower spikes and spiny decorative leaves, found in warm regions of the Old World.

17d   Good profit in quick French // sketch (8)

"good" = G (show explanation )

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

hide explanation

The French word for quick is vite[8].

19d   PSV rounding bend with a // shock (6)

PSV[5] is a British term denoting a public service vehicle[5], a vehicle (typically a passenger vehicle) used to perform a public service or intended for use by the general public.

Scratching the Surface
For European sports fans, the clue may have evoked Philips Sport Vereniging (abbreviated PSV and internationally known as PSV Eindhoven[7]), a Dutch sports club from Eindhoven, Netherlands. It is best known for its professional football [soccer] department, which plays in the top division of Dutch football.

20d   Left, for example, complete // hero (6)

22d   Instrument // that's played softly (5)

The 2Kiwis appear to have interpreted the second definition as the customary musical direction. I think it might actually be the more rarely seen musical passage.

Piano[5] denotes a passage performed or marked to be performed softly.
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. Once again, found myself on Jay's wavelength -- completed while eating breakfast, without assistance. One star for difficulty and three for enjoyment, given that I had to get to work on the last batch of tax returns.

    1. Hi Richard,

      Welcome back. Glad you were able to get your head above the sea of tax returns, however briefly. Which reminds me, its about time I did something about my return.