Monday, November 28, 2016

Monday, November 28, 2016 — DT 28199

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 28199
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Monday, August 22, 2016
Rufus (Roger Squires)
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 28199]
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


For those like myself who relish Rufus' whimsical cryptic definitions, this puzzle is a delight. The Monday maestro has outdone himself today. This puzzle is overflowing with them.

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   The provision of a home for a small charge (8)

6a   They are bound to hold different views, for instance (6)

9a   Sailor girl, // one with unmarried sisters in her care (6)

"sailor" = AB (show explanation )

In the Royal Navy, according to Oxford Dictionaries, able seaman[5] (abbreviation AB[5]), is a rank of sailor above ordinary seaman and below leading seaman. On the other hand, Collins English Dictionary tells us that an able seaman[10] (also called able-bodied seaman) is an ordinary seaman, especially one in the merchant navy, who has been trained in certain skills.

hide explanation

An abbess[5] is a woman who is the head of an abbey of nuns.

What did he say?
In his review on Big Dave's Crossword Blog, Miffypops writes that the girl in the clue could be any girl but this one was apparently a good queen.
Good Queen Bess[5] is a nickname for Queen Elizabeth I.

10a   One having a row at end of day /in/ the kitchen (8)

Scullery[2,3,4,5,10,11] is a historical, mainly British term* for a small kitchen or room adjoining a kitchen used for washing and storing dishes and utensils, vegetable preparation, and other dirty household work.
* but not British enough not to be found in American dictionaries.
11a   First course made clear // study on WW1 battleground (8)

Con[5] is an archaic term meaning to study attentively or learn by heart (a piece of writing)  ⇒ the girls conned their pages with a great show of industry.

The Battle of the Somme[5] was a major battle of the First World War between the British* and the Germans, on the Western Front in northern France July-November 1916. More than a million men on both sides were killed or wounded.
* By the way, there may also have been a few troops from Canada, Newfoundland (not yet part of Canada), Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, India, and various other parts of the British Empire—not to mention France—involved.
12a   Terribly chesty, // cut down the weed? (6)

Scythe[10] (verb) means to to cut (grass, etc) with a scythe.

13a   From which to draw money for the meat? (5,7)

This is a cryptic definition comprising a primary indication (or precise definition) — marked with a solid underline — in combination with a subsidiary indication (or indicative wordplay) marked with a dashed underline. Such indicative wordplay, or cryptic elaboration, while not constituting a second precise definition (as one would have in a double definition) does allude to an aspect of or attribute associated with another definition for or usage of the solution.

16a   Electrical fault // that racing drivers should be able to get round quickly (5,7)

Although the latter part of this clue (marked with a dashed underline) could well be deemed to provide cryptic elaboration to the first part of the clue (similar to the preceding clue), I have chosen to mark this clue as a double definition as the latter part is a definition in its own right for the solution (short circuit). This contrasts with the preceding clue, where I see no way that the phrase "(for) the meat" could be considered to be a definition in its own right for the solution to that clue (joint account).

19a   First form // make a fuss? (6)

Here, one is to interpret "first form" to mean "form [make] for the first time".

Create[5] is an informal British term denoting to make a fuss or complain ⇒ little kids create because they hate being ignored.

21a   Link accepted by spiteful female // gossip (8)

23a   Murder -- // one group of detectives seen in house (8)

"group of detectives" = CID (show explanation )

The Criminal Investigation Department (seemingly better known by its abbreviation CID[2]) is the detective branch of a British police force.

hide explanation

24a   Cramped // Northern shaft (6)

25a   Throw oneself /into/ gym without a breather (6)

Contrary to what Miffypops shows in his review, surely the definition is merely "throw oneself" and not "throw oneself into".

"gym [class]" = PE (show explanation )

PE[5] is the abbreviation for physical education [or Phys Ed, as it was known in my school days]. 

hide explanation

26a   Workers, perhaps none better, but all they make goes on horses (8)

Like many of those leaving comments at Big Dave's Crossword Blog, I failed to appreciate the role of the phrase "perhaps none better". From Gazza and Rabbit Dave, who responded to Kitty at Comment #2, I learn that one needs to interpret this phrase as though it were written "perhaps none of whom is a better [one who wagers or places bets]".

I dithered over how to mark this phrase, finally deciding to show it as elaboration on the core clue. As I have said many times, some of Rufus' clues defy precise classification [and that is intended merely as a statement of fact and not a criticism as these clues are often numbered among my favourites].


2d   He must have been given credit for something (6)

3d   Iron // clasp (5)

In the second definition, press[3] is used in the sense of to squeeze or clasp in fondness or concern ⇒ pressed her hand before leaving.

4d   It's not easy for him to get off at night (9)

5d   Beginning // Northern climb (7)

6d   Joins a dog-end that's picked up (5)

Dog-end[5] is an informal British term for a cigarette butt (also known in Britain as a cigarette end[2]), the unsmoked stub of a cigarette.

7d   William has attempt at /making/ butter (5,4)

8d   Stepping out /for/ 31 days in Greece's capital (8)

13d   Arab // girl rings doctor up in a novel (9)

A Jordanian is a native or inhabitant of Jordan[5] (official name Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan), a country in the Middle East east of the River Jordan; population 6,269,300 (est. 2009); official language, Arabic; capital, Amman.

14d   Admonished /as a result of/ bad education (9)

15d   Partly burn solid fuel // that draws well (8)

17d   Noisy game? (7)

Despite what Miffypops shows in his review, I would say that this is a cryptic definition rather than a double definition. "Noisy" is an attribute of rackets [dins] — not a synonym.

Rackets[7] (UK, Ireland, and Canada) or racquets (US) is an indoor racket (or racquet) sport played  in the United Kingdom as well as — sparingly* it seems — in Ireland, United States, and Canada. The sport is infrequently called "hard rackets," possibly to distinguish it from the related sport of squash (formerly called "squash rackets").
* apart from those in the UK, courts number 1 in Ireland, 7 in the US, and 1 in Canada (in Montreal).
The first rackets court in Montreal was built in 1825. The Montreal Rackets Club (founded in 1889) is reportedly the oldest in existence [a claim I find rather dubious].

Rackets is not to be confused with the North American game of racquetball[7] or the British game of racketball (considered to be a variant of squash despite having been originally based on racquetball). In 2016, the World Squash Federation announced an international 're-branding' of racketball as Squash 57 (the 57 referring to the diameter of the ball) in order to emphasise both its membership in the 'squash rackets' family, and its distinctiveness from U.S. racquetball.

18d   Indication of support // to approve (6)

A favour[2] is a knot of ribbons worn as a badge of support for a particular team, political party, etc.

Delving Deeper
Favours often take the form of a rosette[5], a rose-shaped decoration, typically made of ribbon, worn by supporters of a sports team or political party or awarded as a prize ⇒ the showjumping rosettes Samantha had accumulated.

In Britain, it is a common practice to wear a rosette to show one's allegiance to a sports team or political party.

20d   Pick // hat up and finally leave (5)

Tile[10] is old-fashioned British slang for a hat.

Sorting the Tiles
In fact, this expression may be English slang, and specifically cockney slang. However, it is apparently not rhyming slang but merely an allusion to the fact that "roofs are covered with tiles, heads with hats"[a]. The tile[5] forming the basis of this allusion is a roofing tile, a thin rectangular slab of baked clay or other material, used in overlapping rows for covering roofs. This is probably the most common roofing material in Britain.

The Chambers Dictionary states that tile[1] is slang for a hat or a Scottish term for a top hat. Various other sources define tile (or tile hat) as an informal term for a stiff hat or high silk hat. Another informal term for such a hat is a stovepipe hat. In this case, the allusion is to a different type of tile[2], a tube-shaped piece of fired clay used for building drains.

22d   Strain of the present day (5)

The "present day" will be upon us in less than a month during which time these strains will be constantly with us.
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

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