Monday, October 17, 2016

Monday, October 17, 2016 — DT 28158

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 28158
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Tuesday, July 5, 2016
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 28158]
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 28156 through DT 28157 which were published in The Daily Telegraph from Saturday, July 2, 2016 to Monday, July 4, 2016.


The editors an the National Post, frisky after a weekend off, skip over a couple of puzzles today.

The puzzle contains a sizable number of Briticisms — some with which I am familiar and some which are new to me. However, with a bit of effort, I did manage to complete the puzzle without resorting to outside help.

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.


3a   Problems associated with sudden withdrawal /from/ remote country (4,6)

According to British dictionaries, cold turkey[5] can denote either:
  1. the abrupt and complete cessation of taking a drug to which one is addicted ⇒ I had to go cold turkey; or
  2. the unpleasant symptoms caused by suddenly ceasing to take a drug to which one is addicted ⇒ stopping the drug may result in cold turkey.
The former meaning alone is found in American dictionaries.

8a   A tailing copper cut back // round roof (6)

"copper" = CU (show explanation )

The symbol for the chemical element copper is Cu[5] (from late Latin cuprum).

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9a   Squirrel, // an hour after 12 noon, seen tucking into thick piece of bread, perhaps (8)

Although I tend to think of chipmunks and squirrels as distinct creatures, the dictionary tells me that a chipmunk[5] is, in fact, a burrowing ground squirrel with cheek pouches and light and dark stripes running down the body, found in North America and northern Eurasia.

10a   Sort of spin // on holiday (3,5)

In cricket, the on[5] (also known as on side) is another name for the leg[5] (also called leg side), the half of the field (as divided lengthways through the pitch) away from which the batsman’s feet are pointed when standing to receive the ball ⇒ he played a lucky stroke to leg. The other half of the field is known as the off[5] (also called off side).

In cricket, a leg break[5] is a ball which deviates from the leg side towards the off side after pitching ⇒ O'Reilly bowled medium-paced leg breaks. This result is accomplished using leg spin[5], a type of spin* bowling which causes the ball to deviate from the leg side towards the off side after pitching ⇒ he coped comfortably with the leg spin of Mushtaq Ahmed.
* Spin[5] means to to bowl, pitch, hit, or kick (a ball) so that it rotates in the air and changes direction or speed on bouncing, or (of a ball) to be projected in this way.

What are they talking about?
In the thread attached to Comment #1 on Big Dave's Crossword Blog, a number of writers comment that they entered OFF BREAK rather than LEG BREAK. Others admit to taking a TEA BREAK (the British equivalent of a 'coffee break').
In cricket, an off break[5] is a ball which deviates from the off side towards the leg side after pitching — the opposite of a leg break.

Michael wraps up the thread with a reference to the following description of the sport of cricket.

You have two sides, one out in the field and one in. Each man that's in the side that's in goes out, and when he's out he comes in and the next man goes in until he's out. When they are all out, the side that's out comes in and the side that's been in goes out and tries to get those coming in, out. Sometimes you get men still in and not out.

When a man goes out to go in, the men who are out try to get him out, and when he is out he goes in and the next man in goes out and goes in. There are two men called umpires who stay out all the time and they decide when the men who are in are out. When both sides have been in and all the men have been out, and both sides have been out twice after all the men have been in, including those who are not out, that is the end of the game.


(click here to see my attempt to clarify the 'ins' and 'outs' of this narrative)

You have two sides [teams], one out in the field and one in [batting]. Each man that's in the side [in Britain, one says "in a side" rather than "on a team"] that's in [batting] goes out [I believe this means that he forgoes the cucumber sandwiches in the clubhouse in order to go out to the pitch to bat], and when he's out [dismissed] he comes in [returns to the clubhouse for more cucumber sandwiches] and the next man goes in [bats] until he's out [dismissed]. When they are all out [all players (but one) on the side are dismissed], the side that's out [fielding] comes in [bats] and the side that's been in [batting] goes out [fields] and tries to get those coming in [to bat], out [dismissed]. Sometimes you get men still in and not out [Since batsmen must always bat in pairs, the team is dismissed once ten of the eleven players have been dismissed, leaving no partner for the lone remaining player. Although the team is "out" (dismissed), the eleventh played is said to be "not out".].

When a man goes out [from the clubhouse to the pitch] to go in [bat], the men who are out [fielding] try to get him out [dismissed], and when he is out [dismissed] he goes in [returns to the clubhouse] and the next man in [scheduled to bat] goes out [from the clubhouse to the pitch] and goes in [bats]. There are two men called umpires who stay out [on the pitch] all the time [(they never get to eat cucumber sandwiches)] and they decide when the men who are in [batting] are out [dismissed]. When both sides have been in [batted] and all the men have been out [dismissed], and both sides have been out [dismissed] twice after all the men have been in [batted], including those who are not out [the eleventh player who has batted but not been dismissed], that is the end of the game [a cricket match consists of two innings with ten "outs" (dismissals) per each half innings (in cricket, the division of play is called an 'innings', rather than an 'inning' as in baseball)].

Simple! (although the details concerning the cucumber sandwiches may not be entirely accurate)

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11a   Wild cat devouring a rat's head /and/ part of body (6)

12a   Monk plugged in power tool /and/ portable stove (10)

A lama[10] is a priest or monk of the Mahayana form of Buddhism of Tibet and Mongolia.

I think the setter may have had one salamander in mind but the Brits appear to have focused on another.

My two American dictionaries as well as one of my British dictionaries (Collins English Dictionary) tells me that a salamander[3,4,11] is a portable stove used to heat or dry buildings under construction (seemingly an excellent match to the definition given in the clue).

However, according to my other two British dictionaries, a salamander[2,5] is a hot metal plate for browning meat, etc.

Nevertheless, most of the Brits took salamander to be a "cooker" (British term for a stove used to cook food) — which didn't seem to correspond to either of the dictionary definitions.

Wikipedia to the Rescue
There are in fact two different heating appliances that go by the name salamander.

The first is a salamander heater[7], any of a variety of portable forced-air or convection heaters, often kerosene-fueled, used in ventilated areas for worksite comfort. Salamander heaters are most often found at construction sites. Depending on style, they can also be referred to as "torpedo furnaces", "salamander furnaces", or simply, "salamanders".

Salamander heaters date at least to the 1920s. In the early 1940s, the Scheu Manufacturing Company, a leading producer of temporary portable space heating equipment, developed the modern Salamander heater, to provide warmth, thereby allowing construction crews to work in inclement weather. With the introduction of the Salamander heater in the 1940s, sales spread across the US, and by the 1950s, to Europe.

The other salamander[7] is a culinary grill characterized by very high temperature overhead electric or gas heating elements. It is used primarily in professional kitchens for overhead grilling (US: broiling). It is also used for toasting, browning of gratin dishes, melting cheeses onto sandwiches, and caramelizing desserts such as crème brûlée.

Salamanders are generally similar to an oven without a front door, with the heating elements at the top. They are more compact; typically only half the height and depth of a conventional oven. They are often wall mounted at eye level, enabling easy access and close control of the cooking process.

Modern salamanders take their name from the 18th century salamander, the tool of choice for toasting the top of a dish [this being the device described in dictionary entries cited above]. It consisted of a thick plate of iron attached to the end of a long handle, with two feet, or rests, arranged near the iron plate for propping the plate over the food to be browned. Its name in turn was taken from the legendary type of salamander, a mythical amphibian that was believed to be immune to fire.

The fact that these appliances are described as "often wall mounted" causes me to question whether these latter salamanders can really be considered to be portable stoves.

14a   Assorted // 'semolina' clues, cryptic (13)

Scratching the Surface
Semolina[5] is:
  1. the hard grains left after the milling of flour, used in puddings and in pasta; or
  2. a pudding made of semolina.
This word shows up quite regularly in British puzzles — almost as often as it apparently appears on the menu of British boarding schools — and it is rare indeed to see anyone actually admit to liking this dessert.

20a   Pretty // area of land shown in musical from the east (10)

Evita[7] is a musical with music by Andrew Lloyd Webber and lyrics by Tim Rice. It concentrates on the life of Argentine political leader Eva Perón [known familiarly as Evita], the second wife of Argentine president Juan Perón. The story follows Evita's early life, rise to power, charity work, and eventual death.

22a   Foul play over // Aintree champion? (3,3)

Aintree Racecourse[7] is a racecourse in Aintree, Merseyside, England [near Liverpool]. The racecourse is best known for annually holding the world-famous Grand National steeplechase.

 Red Rum[7] was a champion Thoroughbred racehorse who achieved an unmatched historic treble when he won the Grand National in 1973, 1974 and 1977, and also came second in the two intervening years. The world-famous steeplechase is a notoriously difficult race that has been referred to as being "the ultimate test of a horse’s courage". The horse was renowned for his jumping ability, having not fallen in 100 races.

23a   Graduate runs into French port, mostly /for/ squid (8)

"runs" = R (show explanation )

On cricket scorecards [not to mention baseball scoreboards], the abbreviation R[5] denotes run(s).

In cricket, a run[5] is a unit of scoring achieved by hitting the ball so that both batsmen are able to run between the wickets, or awarded in some other circumstances.

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Calais[5] is a ferry port in northern France; population 75,790 (2006). Captured by Edward III in 1347 after a long siege, it remained an English possession until it was retaken by the French in 1558.

Calamari[5] (also calamares) is squid served as food.

24a   Number // of fundamental importance? (8)

Cardinal[2] is another name for cardinal number[5], a number denoting quantity (one, two, three, etc.), as opposed to an ordinal number which defines the position of something in a series (first, second, third, etc.).

25a   Fairy // godmother finally admitted to malice (6)

What, exactly, is a sprite? It turns out that a sprite[5] is nothing more than an elf or fairy.

26a   Superior soldiers leading troops at the front /in/ advance (10)


1d   Rather cool // early Christian with authority (8)

St Luke[5] was an evangelist, closely associated with St Paul and traditionally the author of the third Gospel and the Acts of the Apostles in the Christian Bible.

Arm[5,10] is used in the sense of power or authority the long arm of the law caught up with him.

2d   High-ranking officials // to lead gunners onto ship (3,5)

Should you have thought that "to lead" is being used to clue TOP, then you stumbled into the trap.

The symbol for the chemical element lead is Pb[5] (from Latin plumbum).

The Royal Regiment of Artillery, commonly referred to as the Royal Artillery[7] (abbreviation RA), is the artillery arm of the British Army. Despite its name, it comprises a number of regiments.

In Crosswordland, a ship is rarely anything other than a steamship (abbreviation SS[5]).

3d   Drew near artist, // producer of pictures (6)

"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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4d   Want // chess player to sacrifice bishop (4)

Black[5] is the player of the black pieces in chess or draughts [checkers] ⇒ Black’s king’s defences are somewhat weakened.

"bishop" = B (show explanation )

B[5] is an abbreviation for bishop that is used in recording moves in chess.

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5d   Drag ladder /leaving/ rehearsal (5,3)
In Britain, a vertical strip of unravelled fabric in tights or stockings is known as a ladder[5] ⇒ one of Sally’s stockings developed a ladder. As a verb, ladder (with reference to tights or stockings) means to develop or cause to develop a ladder ⇒ (i) (as adjective laddered) her tights were always laddered; (ii) they laddered the minute I put them on.

6d   Comment // on stain (6)

7d   It may affect the weather // broadcast online (2,4)

El Niño[5] is an irregularly occurring and complex series of climatic changes affecting the equatorial Pacific region and beyond every few years, characterized by the appearance of unusually warm, nutrient-poor water off northern Peru and Ecuador, typically in late December. The effects of El Niño include reversal of wind patterns across the Pacific, drought in Australasia, and unseasonal heavy rain in South America.

13d   Earthenware // daughter left out (5)

Delft[5] is English or Dutch tin-glazed earthenware, typically decorated by hand in blue on a white background ⇒ walls covered with delft tiles.

15d   Inspector, // formerly a collier (8)

16d   Best // in print, stylish (8)

17d   Having to cut it by end of May /shows/ harshness (8)

18d   Feel awkward about the old lady /suggesting/ sex? (6)

19d   Extremely clever to revise // trust (6)

Trust[2,10] is used in the sense [new to me] of commercial credit ⇒ put it on trust.

21d   In the end, // book is printed on time (2,4)

23d   The answer to this one must be written down (4)
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. Almost nailed this one sans help. Never heard of the course or the horse, but it suddenly occurred to me that foul play over might be murder spelled backwards.

    So, all done but for two letters and finally bunged in tea break, though it made little sense. I see any number of Brits on the BD blog missed that one, as well, even some avid cricket fans.