Friday, October 14, 2016

Friday, October 14, 2016 — DT 28155

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 28155
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Friday, July 1, 2016
Setter
Giovanni (Don Manley)
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 28155]
Big Dave's Crossword Blog Review Written By
Digby
BD Rating
Difficulty - ★★ Enjoyment - ★★
Falcon's Experience
┌────┬────┬────┬────┬────┬────┬────┐
███████████████████████████████████
└────┴────┴────┴────┴────┴────┴────┘
Legend:
- 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

Introduction

My experience with the puzzle closely parallels that of Digby who reports in his review at Big Dave's Crossword Blog that it fell into place quite quickly, with the bottom half putting a bit more of a fight than the top.

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.

Across

1a   Strike restricting a // corporation (6)

Corporation[3,4,5,11] is a dated humorous term for a large paunch or pot belly.

4a   Somehow happier having penned grand // words at front of book? (8)

"grand" = G (show explanation )

Grand[5] is an informal term for a thousand dollars or pounds he gets thirty-five grand a year. While the term "grand" itself would seem to be commonly used in the UK, the informal abbreviation G[5] meaning grand appears to be regarded as a North American usage I was up nine Gs on the blackjack tables.

G is defined in various British dictionaries as follows:
  1. Oxford Dictionaries: (North American informal) abbreviation for grand, a thousand dollars)[5];
  2. Chambers 21st Century Dictionary: (North American slang) abbreviation for a grand, 1000 dollars[2];
  3. Collins English Dictionary: (mainly US slang) a symbol for grand (a thousand dollars or pounds)[10] .
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An epigraph[5] is a short quotation or saying at the beginning of a book or chapter, intended to suggest its theme.

9a   See hundred drink /in/ this place (6)

"see" = LO (show explanation )

Lo[5] is an archaic exclamation used to draw attention to an interesting or amazing event and lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them.

hide explanation

I may be wrong but I would think that the C in the solution is the Roman numeral for one hundred rather than an abbreviation for century (as Digby indicates in his review at Big Dave's Crossword Blog). Yes, c[5] is the abbreviation for century, but (to the best of my knowledge) only when used in reference to a specific period of time ⇒ a watch case, 19th c. Century* can mean a collection of one hundred things (especially, in Britain, a batsman's score of a hundred runs in cricket) but I am not aware that the abbreviation applies when the word is used in this sense.
* A century[5] is a score of a hundred in a sporting event, especially a batsman’s score of a hundred runs in cricket ⇒ he scored the only century of the tour. Among North American sports, only in basketball would one be likely to see a score surpassing one hundred — and that would include the points amassed by the entire team rather than those netted by a single player. Therefore, one might see the word century[10] used in the context the basketball team passed the century mark in their last game. In North America, the word century[3,11] can apparently mean one hundred in a more general sense — although in my experience this is not a common usage — as the American Heritage Dictionary defines the word to mean a group of 100 things and the Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary as any group or collection of 100.
10a   Daughter with us in the beginning /seen as/ magical (8)

I was hard-pressed to justify the solution being anything other than a noun, but I eventually discovered that stardust[1] can indeed be an adjective meaning glittering, romantic or magical — but only if one happens to own a copy of The Chambers Dictionary, for I found the word listed as this part of speech nowhere else.

11a   Gosh -- bet the French tucking in /will get/ fat! (9)

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

Punt[2,3,4,5,10,11] is a chiefly British term which (as a verb) means to gamble or bet, especially against the bank (as in roulette and some card games such as faro), or on horses or other sporting events and (as a noun) denotes such a gamble or bet.

"the French" = LE (show explanation )

In French, the masculine singular form of the definite article is le[8].

hide explanation


13a   Notice record time -- /it's/ very good (5)

"record" = EP (show explanation )

EP[10] (abbreviation for extended-play) is one of the formats in which music is sold, usually comprising four or five tracks.

hide explanation

14a   A freeness lost? It becomes tricky // to state opinions boldly (6,7)

A trick[5] is an illusion. Thus, as an anagram indicator, the phrase "it becomes tricky" may imply an illusory transformation of the letters found in the anagram fodder. Or, perhaps, the anagram indicator is merely "it becomes" and the word "tricky" indicates that the setter believes that the anagram will be difficult for the solver to spot. Of course, the real reason for the word "tricky" being present is simply to enhance the surface reading of the clue.

17a   A ton? Hang on, we say, /it's/ a lot less than a ton! (13)

Ton[5] is an informal British term for a hundred, in particular a speed of 100 mph, a score of 100 or more, or a sum of £100 ⇒ he scored 102 not out, his third ton of the tour [in this usage example, another word for 'century' (see 9a)].

Hundredweight[10] may denote any of three units of weight:
  1. (British, also called long hundredweight) a unit of weight equal to 112 pounds (about 50.8 kilograms);
  2. (US and Canadian, also called short hundredweight) a unit of weight equal to 100 pounds (about 45.4 kilograms); or
  3. (also called metric hundredweight) a metric unit of weight equal to 50 kilograms.
21a   Field // left with a lot of paper around (5)

23a   Breaker for ship of the desert? (4,5)

Scratching the Surface
In the nautical surface reading, breaker[2] denotes a large wave which breaks on rocks or on the beach.

24a   Sovereign // put at risk has head of army brought in (8)

Sovereign[5] is an archaic or literary term meaning possessing royal power and status ⇒ our most sovereign lord the King.

Imperial[10] means characteristic of or exercising supreme authority.

25a   First bit of icing in last // bit of decoration (6)

26a   Artist put in the box Irish // cross (8)

"artist" = RA (show explanation )

A Royal Academician (abbreviation RA[10]) is a member of the Royal Academy of Arts[5] (also Royal Academy; abbreviation also RA[10]), an institution established in London in 1768, whose purpose is to cultivate painting, sculpture, and architecture in Britain. 

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Erse[5] is a dated term for the Scottish or Irish Gaelic language.

What did he say?
In his review on Big Dave's Crossword Blog, Digby writes that "the box" in question is the 2-letter abbreviation for what we call the Idiot’s Lantern.
Although I failed to find the term in any of my regular stable of dictionaries, there is no doubt that "Idiot's Lantern" is British slang for 'television'.

27a   Money paid for capturing knight /and/ member of royal family (6)

"knight" = N (show explanation )

A knight[5] is a chess piece, typically with its top shaped like a horse’s head, that moves by jumping to the opposite corner of a rectangle two squares by three. Each player starts the game with two knights.

N[5] is the abbreviation for knight used in recording moves in chess [representing the pronunciation of kn-, since the initial letter k- represents 'king'].

As an aside, it is interesting to note that the Chambers 21st Century Dictionary defines: 
  • K[2] as an abbreviation used in chess for knight. 
  • K[2] is a symbol used in chess to represent a king. 
  • N[2] is a symbol used in chess to represent a knight.
The dictionary fails to specify how one differentiates an abbreviation from a symbol.

On the other hand, both The Chambers Dictionary and the Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary list K or K.[1,11] as an abbreviation for knight without specifying the specific context in which this abbreviation is used. However, the context may well be in an honours list rather than in a game of chess. In the UK, for instance, KBE[5] stands for Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire.

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Behind the Image
In Digby's review, the gentleman enjoying the belly laugh is Prince Andrew[7].

Down

1d   Friend with brilliant // home -- a big expensive one (6)

2d   Nicer aunt sadly // in a dither? (9)

3d   Flags? // Officer comes with yours and mine (7)

5d   Folk making request? // No respite, it could possibly appear (11)

One might say that the anagram indicator is "could possibly appear". On the other hand, if one takes the anagram indicator to be merely "possibly" (as Digby shows in his review) then "could ... appear" must be akin to a link phrase — but one which, due to the structure of the clue, does not appear between the definition and wordplay.

6d   Place for car containing black // stuff in bins? (7)

Oxford Dictionaries tells us that bin[5] is a British term for a receptacle in which to deposit rubbish[5] [garbage[5]]. Although a perusal of the definitions for bin[3,11] in American dictionaries would tend to support the claim that the term is British, I know that we certainly use bins for garbage here in Ottawa.

Chambers 21st Century Dictionary and Oxford Dictionaries characterize garbage[2,5] as a North American (especially US) term for rubbish.

7d   A male needs employment, // please (5)

8d   Vindaloo /for/ a remarkable person? (3,5)

Vindaloo[10] is a type of very hot Indian curry.

What did he say?
In his review on Big Dave's Crossword Blog, Digby describes the first definition as being at the top end of the Scoville Scale.
The Scoville scale[5] is a scale for expressing the relative pungency of chilli peppers against that of pure capsaicin [the compound responsible for the pungency of peppers], which measures 16 million Scoville units ⇒ a regular jalapeno pepper registers around 5,000 on the Scoville scale.

12d   Our lad's role could be /making/ money (4-7)

A Eurodollar[2,5,10] (or Euro-dollar[1]) is a US dollar held in Europe or elsewhere outside the US.

What did he say?
In his review on Big Dave's Crossword Blog, Digby writes These have become more expensive over the last week – a lot has changed since last Friday morning !!.
The event to which Digby alludes actually occurred the previous Thursday (June 23, 2016) when the UK electorate voted in a referendum to leave Europe.

15d   Old lover with the action of a twister said /to be/ taking too much money (9)

Torsion[5] denotes:
  1. the action of twisting or the state of being twisted, especially of one end of an object relative to the other; or
  2. the twisting of the cut end of an artery after surgery to impede bleeding.
16d   Social reformer /in/ church, one painting a picture maybe (8)

A Chartist[5] is a member of a UK parliamentary reform movement of 1837–48, the principles of which were set out in a manifesto called The People’s Charter and called for universal suffrage for men, equal electoral districts, voting by secret ballot, abolition of property qualifications for MPs, and annual general elections.

18d   Regret // about one responsible for coded messages (7)

Samuel Morse[10] (1791–1872) was a US inventor and painter who invented the first electric telegraph and the Morse code.

19d   Good American row -- /it's becoming/ stormier (7)

"good" = G (show explanation )

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

hide explanation

20d   Two loveless mischief-makers shortly /appearing in/ middle of the day? (6)

22d   Top character /gets/ record with cry of surprise going round (5)

The "cry of surprise" consists of three letters — not merely two.

Alpha[5] is the first letter of the Greek alphabet (Α, α).

Alpha[5] is also a term used to denote:
  1. (in Sociology and Zoology) the dominant animal or human in a particular group ⇒ the pack is a tightly knit, highly organized group, led by an alpha wolf; or
  2. (informally) a person who has a dominant role or position within a particular sphere ⇒ take turns cooking for each other if one of you is too much of an alpha chef.
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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