Monday, April 24, 2017

Monday, April 24, 2017 — DT 28358

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 28358
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Thursday, February 23, 2017
RayT (Ray Terrell)
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 28358]
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 realized early on that this is a puzzle that I had reviewed on Big Dave's Crossword Blog. However, while I quickly recognized the clues, I was not so fast on the draw when it came to the solutions. Thus even on the second time around, the puzzle provided a good mental workout.

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   Spiritualist meeting // held by wise ancestors ... (6)

4a   ... sanctified /and/ authorised by Church finally (8)

9a   Increased taking exercise, tossing /in/ sleep (6)

10a   Time runs out /to get/ final goal (8)

12a   Properly // in favour of male friend (8)

13a   A new task detailed /for/ newsreader (6)

Behind the Picture
Sir Trevor McDonald[7] is a Trinidadian-British newsreader and journalist. In a 2013 Radio Times poll, he was selected as Britain's 'Most Popular' Newsreader garnering nearly as many votes as the next four nominees combined.

15a   Key // spies blend in somehow, casing area (13)

18a   Arrangement // for auctioning rubbish (13)

22a   Throw goes over pitch, /getting/ obstreperous (6)

Shy[5] is a dated term meaning:
  • (noun) an act of flinging or throwing something at a target
  • (verb) to fling or throw (something) at a target ⇒ he tore the spectacles off and shied them at her
Bolshy[5] (also bolshie) is an informal British term denoting (of a person or attitude) deliberately combative or uncooperative ⇒ I was a bolshie teenager, full of argument.

24a   Rendezvous, embracing miss turning // bare (8)

26a   Case /with/ a hole plugged by adhesive (8)

27a   Group penning single's // making progress (6)

28a   Distracted /being/ buzzed during performance (8)

29a   Scrounger // that's sometimes pickled in pub (6)

I would infer that wordplay parses as EGG (that [which] is sometimes pickled) contained in (in) BAR (pub).


1d   Ill-feeling // if rest gets disturbed (6)

2d   Slur // like individual swallowing last of Asti (9)

Scratching the Surface
Asti[7] (formerly known as Asti Spumante) is a sparkling white Italian wine that is produced throughout southeastern Piedmont but is particularly focused around the towns of Asti and Alba. Since 1993 the wine has been classified as a Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita (DOCG) and as of 2004 was Italy's largest producing appellation.

3d   Apple // company's almost sluggish (7)

Costard[5,10] is an English variety of apple tree or the large ribbed cooking apple of this tree.

Scratching the Surface
Apple is the name of two well-known companies:
  • Apple Inc.[7] is is an American multinational technology company that designs, develops, and sells consumer electronics, computer software, and online services.
  • Apple Corps Ltd[7] (informally known as Apple) is a multi-armed multimedia corporation founded in London in January 1968 by the members of the English rock band The Beatles.

5d   Aid by encouraging transgression initially (4)

This is a trademark RayT semi-&lit. (or semi-all-in-one) clue (show explanation ) in which the entire clue constitutes the wordplay and the definition (marked by the solid underline) is embedded in the clue. If one were to stretch the definition to include the word "initially" then the clue could  be considered to be a full-fledged &lit. (or all-in-one) clue (show explanation ).

In an &lit. clue[7] (or, as some prefer to call it, all-in-one clue) the entire clue provides not only the definition (when read one way), but under a different interpretation also serves as the wordplay.

In a semi-&lit. clue (or, as some prefer to call it, semi-all-in-one clue), either (1) the entire clue acts as the definition while a portion of the clue provides the wordplay or (2) the entire clue acts as the wordplay while a portion of the clue provides the definition.

hide explanation

6d   Dirges /using/ feeble notes, oddly (7)

7d   Draw in chain holding // hoist (5)

8d   Delicate // record -- Queen support rises (8)

"Queen" = R (show explanation )

Queen may be abbreviated as Q, Qu. or R.

Q[5] is an abbreviation for queen that is used especially in describing play in card games and recording moves in chess.

Qu.[2] is another common abbreviation for Queen.

Regina[5] (abbreviation R[5]) [Latin for queen] denotes the reigning queen, used following a name (e.g. Elizabetha Regina, Queen Elizabeth) or in the titles of lawsuits (e.g. Regina v. Jones, the Crown versus Jones — often shortened to R. v. Jones).

Thus Queen Elizabeth signs her name as 'Elizabeth R' as seen here on Canada's paint-stained constitution.

hide explanation

11d   See this person in total // heaven (7)

A see[10] is the diocese of a bishop, or the place within it where his cathedral or procathedral is situated.

The Diocese of Ely[7] is a Church of England diocese in the Province of Canterbury, headed by the Bishop of Ely, who sits at Ely Cathedral in the city of Ely.

"this person" = I (show explanation )

It is a common cryptic crossword convention for the creator of the puzzle to use terms such as (the or this) compiler, (the or this) setter, (this) author, (this) writer, or this person to refer to himself or herself. To solve such a clue, one must generally substitute a first person pronoun (I or me) for whichever of these terms has been used in the clue.

hide explanation

In Greek mythology, Elysium[50] is the place at the ends of the earth to which certain favoured heroes were conveyed by the gods after death. The term is used figuratively to denote a place or state of perfect happiness.

14d   Dressed down /in/ price, wearing sack (7)

16d   Strapping // body maturing (9)

17d   One unwilling to strike poet // that holds dagger (8)

19d   Animal/'s/ pong accepted by one elderly relative (7)

Pong[5] is an informal British term meaning:
  • (noun) a strong, unpleasant smell ⇒ corked wine has a powerful pong 
  • (verb) to smell strongly and unpleasantly ⇒ the place just pongs of dirty clothes
In British and Irish slang, hum[10] denotes:
  • (noun) an unpleasant odour
  • (verb) to smell unpleasant
Nan[5] is an informal British term for one's grandmother.

20d   Love // that is about solid, sort of? (7)

21d   Book/'s/ bound to be gripped in both hands (6)

23d   Carry empty 'Equalizer' // gun (5)

Luger[5] (trademark in the US) is a type of German automatic pistol.

25d   /See/ stake // mount up (4)

Mount Etna[5] is a volcano in eastern Sicily, rising to 3,323 m (10,902 ft). It is the highest and most active volcano in Europe.

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)
[12] - (Webster’s New World College Dictionary)
[13] - (Macmillan Dictionary)
Signing off for today — Falcon

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