Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Wednesday, December 21, 2016 — DT 28225

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 28225
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Wednesday, September 21, 2016
Jay (Jeremy Mutch)
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 28225]
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 detected a bit of an auto racing theme in today's puzzle. In any event, I sped though it fairly quickly and experienced no major holdups.

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   Racing driver with puncture /making/ corner (10)

Jenson Button[7] is a British racing driver currently under contract with McLaren-Honda, as a reserve driver. He won the 2009 Formula One World Championship, driving for Brawn GP.

What did he say?
In his review on Big Dave's Crossword Blog, KiwiColin describes the latter part of the charade as a puncture or place in a tyre where the air could leak out.
Tyre[5] is the British spelling of tire, in the sense of a part of an automobile.

6a   Chief /from/ eastern border going the other way (4)

Emir[5] (also amir) is a title of various Muslim (mainly Arab) rulers ⇒ HRH the Emir of Kuwait.

10a   Humours // daughter during lows (5)

11a   No Conservative switches on the radio /for/ such pieces of music (9)

"Conservative" = C (show explanation )

The abbreviation for Conservative may be either C.[10] or Con.[10].

A Tory[10] is a member or supporter of the Conservative Party in Great Britain or Canada.

Historically, a Tory[10] was a member of the English political party that opposed the exclusion of James, Duke of York from the royal succession (1679–80). Tory remained the label for subsequent major conservative interests until they gave birth to the Conservative Party in the 1830s.

The Conservative Party[5] is a a major British political party that emerged from the old Tory Party under Sir Robert Peel in the 1830s and 1840s. Since the Second World War, it has been in power 1951–64, 1970-74, and 1979–97. It governed in a coalition with the Liberal Democrats from 2010 until the general election of May 2015, in which it was returned with a majority.

hide explanation

A nocturne[5] is a short musical composition of a romantic nature, typically for piano.

12a   Singer // so professional must welcome article (7)

Casting Light on the Picture
The illustration used by KiwiColon in his review on Big Dave's Crossword Blog is a photo of New Zealand operatic soprano Dame Kiri Te Kenawa[5].

13a   Pretend // to be discerning? (4,3)

14a   Music producer // secure in sleeping around (12)

The glockenspiel[5] is a musical percussion instrument having a set of tuned metal pieces mounted in a frame and struck with small hammers.

18a   Small and enchanting woman has meals /for/ centres of communication (12)

Board[10] means to to give or receive meals or meals and lodging* in return for money or work. Thus the phrase "has meals" is used by the setter to clue BOARDS.

* when used on its own, the word "board" almost always seems to mean meals and lodging but when used in combination means meals alone ⇒ (i) room and board; (ii) board and lodging.

21a   Formula 1's certain // split (7)

Formula One[7] (also Formula 1 or F1 and officially the FIA Formula One World Championship) is the highest class of single-seat auto racing that is sanctioned by the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA). The "formula", designated in the name, refers to a set of rules, to which all participants' cars must conform. The F1 season consists of a series of races, known as Grands Prix (from French, meaning grand prizes), held worldwide on purpose-built circuits and public roads.

23a   Excited, secures // the high ground (7)

24a   Appear hurt, /but/ hurry up (4,5)

25a   Good competition /is/ a blessing (5)

"good" = G (show explanation )

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

hide explanation

26a   The positive aspect // of many Anglicans (4)

Yin and yang[10] are the two complementary principles of Chinese philosophy: Yin is negative, dark, and feminine, Yang positive, bright, and masculine. Their interaction is thought to maintain the harmony of the universe and to influence everything within it.

27a   Brides test new // homes (10)

Bedsit[5] (also bedsitter or bed-sitting room) is a British term for a one-roomed unit of accommodation typically consisting of combined bedroom and sitting room with cooking facilities.


1d   Puzzle /of/ rising total collected by worker (6)

"of" ⇒ link word (show explanation )

When used as a link word, "of" denotes that the definition is formed from the constituent parts found in the wordplay.

This is based on the word of[5] being used as a preposition indicating the material or substance constituting something ⇒ (i) the house was built of bricks; (ii) walls of stone.

hide explanation

"worker" = BEE (show explanation )

The word "worker" and the phrase "social worker" are commonly used in cryptic crossword puzzles to clue ANT or BEE.

A worker[5] is a neuter or undeveloped female bee, wasp, ant, or other social insect, large numbers of which do the basic work of the colony.

In crossword puzzles, "worker" will most frequently be used to clue ANT and occasionally BEE but I have yet to see it used to clue WASP. Of course, "worker" is sometimes also used to clue HAND or MAN.

hide explanation

2d   Soldiers /needing/ oxygen in exercise from the south (6)

O[5] is the symbol for the chemical element oxygen.

3d   Barriers make this part of meal // a challenge? (8,6)

This clue almost looks like it wants to be a cryptic definition or some sort of all-in-one clue — but it doesn't quite seem to work as such. Rather, I would say that the wordplay parses as OBSTACLE (barriers make this; i.e., something comprised of barriers) + COURSE (part of a meal).

4d   Vehicle /for/ ordering bacon and mash? (6,3)

A hansom[10] (also hansom cab) is a two-wheeled one-horse carriage with a fixed hood. The driver sits on a high outside seat at the rear.

5d   Look at copper -- married // doctor (5)

"look" = 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

"copper" = CU (show explanation )

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

hide explanation

I would say that the wordplay likely parses as LO (look) + (at; situated next to) CU (copper) + M (married; abbrev.).

"Lo" is an exclamation meaning 'look!' or 'behold' and I do not believe that it can mean "look at".

Locum[5] (short for locum tenens) is a British term for a person who stands in temporarily for someone else of the same profession, especially a cleric or doctor.

7d   Chap mainly performing outside left // instrument (8)

Chap[3,4,11], an informal British[5] or chiefly British[3] term for a man or boy, is a shortened form of chapman[3,4,11], an archaic term for a trader, especially an itinerant pedlar[a,b].

[a] Pedlar is the modern British spelling of peddler[c] which, in most senses, is a US or old-fashioned British spelling. The exception is in the sense of a dealer in illegal drugs which the Brits spell as drug peddler.

[b] The current meaning of chap[2] dates from the 18th century. In the 16th century, chap meant 'a customer'. The dictionaries do not explain how a shortened form of 'chapman' (pedlar) came to mean 'customer'.

[c] Collins COBUILD Advanced English Dictionary

A mandolin[5] is a musical instrument resembling a lute, having paired metal strings plucked with a plectrum. It has a characteristic tremolo when sustaining long notes.

8d   About to pay /and/ move house (8)

Move house[d] is a British term meaning to move (i.e., go to live in another house) ⇒ We have just moved house and are planning to paint some of the rooms.

[d] Collins COBUILD English Usage

9d   Sweet // kid thus lighter? Unlikely (7,7)

Sweet[5] is the British name for candy.

Turkish delight[3,4,11] is a jelly-like candy flavoured with flower essences, usually cut into cubes and covered with powdered sugar.

15d   Assesses, /and/ leaves upset about letter from Greece turning up (9)

Tau[5] is the nineteenth letter of the Greek alphabet (Τ, τ).

16d   Part of house full yesterday, // conveniently (8)

17d   Limits // matches with county (4,4)

Tie[5] is a British term meaning a sports match between two or more players or teams in which the winners proceed to the next round of the competition Swindon Town have gained themselves a third round tie against Oldham*.

* This usage example does not mean — as a North American might presume — that Swindon Town and Oldham played to a draw in the third round. Rather, it means that Swindon Town defeated their opponent in the second round and will move on to face Oldham in the third round.

Down[5] is one of the Six Counties of Northern Ireland, since 1973 an administrative district; chief town, Downpatrick.

19d   Close friend must drop note /for/ warder's charge (6)

Ti[1] is the seventh note of the major scale in tonic sol-fa.*

* According to several British dictionaries, the principal spelling is te[2,4,10] with ti[2,4,10] being an alternative spelling. However, Oxford Dictionaries decrees that te[5] is the British spelling with ti being the North American spelling. In the American dictionaries that I consulted, the only spelling listed is ti[3,11]. The Chambers Dictionary stands alone — even from its sister publication Chambers 21st Century Dictionary — in showing ti[1] to be the principal spelling with te[1] as an alternative spelling.

Warder[5] is a British term for a guard in a prison.

20d   Items of some worth, // in the form of radios (6)

22d   Cancel // Times before starting Express (5)

Scratching the Surface
The Times[7] is a British daily national newspaper based in London. The Times and its sister paper The Sunday Times are published by Times Newspapers, since 1981 a division of News UK, a wholly owned subsidiary of Australian-born American publisher and media entrepreneur Rupert Murdoch's News Corp.

The Daily Express[7] is a daily national middle market tabloid newspaper in the United Kingdom.
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. DOWNLOAD $12,234 in 2 months Betting Software?

    Let me get it straight.

    I don't care about sports. Never cared less.

    I tried everything from stocks & forex to internet marketing and affiliate products.. I even made some money but then blew it all when the stock market went south.

    I think I finally found it. Grab It Today!!!

  2. If you want your ex-girlfriend or ex-boyfriend to come crawling back to you on their knees (no matter why you broke up) you got to watch this video
    right away...

    (VIDEO) Get your ex CRAWLING back to you...?