Thursday, May 4, 2017

Thursday, May 4, 2017 — DT 28366

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 28366
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Saturday, March 4, 2017
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 28366 – Hints]
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 28366 – Review]
Big Dave's Crossword Blog Review Written By
Big Dave (Hints)
crypticsue (Review)
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
As this was a Saturday "Prize Puzzle" in Britain, there are two entries related to it on Big Dave's Crossword Blog — the first, posted on the date of publication, contains hints for selected clues while the second is a full review issued following the entry deadline for the contest. The vast majority of reader comments will generally be found attached to the "hints" posting with a minimal number — if any — accompanying the full review.


This puzzle was certainly a sterner test for me than it was for crypticsue. I managed to make several incorrect entries — in a couple of instances based on North American meanings and spellings. Some of these I discovered and was able to resolve as they interfered with intersecting clues.

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.


4a   Blue // feathers thrown (8)

8a   Beat // the interminable spots (6)

9a   Uncovered // meat in rush (8)

10a   Military two-step? (3,5)

Military Misstep
My incorrect solution was TAP DANCE, supposing it to be an allusion to taps[5] , a bugle call for lights to be put out in army quarters or a bugle call sounded at a military funeral. However, Oxford Dictionaries informs me that taps is a US term.

11a   Go round // using permit (6)

This was one of the last two in and that was solely due to having an incorrect entry at 5d.

12a   Treading awkwardly, /seeing/ inclined surface (8)

13a   Nothing in temporary accommodation where maiden's sheltered // that's soothing (8)

"maiden"  = M (show explanation )

In cricket, a maiden[5], also known as a maiden over and denoted on cricket scorecards by the abbreviation m.[10], is an over* in which no runs are scored.

* An over[5] is a division of play consisting of a sequence of six balls bowled by a bowler from one end of the pitch, after which another bowler takes over from the other end.

hide explanation

16a   Comprehensive // brushwork (8)

19a   Catch // ten wriggling fish (8)

21a   Central core of bandsmen, Blockheads, /forming/ as a group (2,4)

Diverging from what crypticsue has shown in her review, I would say that the definition is merely "as a group" with "forming" serving as a link word.

23a   Where you can't get in a word /or/ aside? (8)

Entering EDGEWISE (US and Canadian spelling) rather than EDGEWAYS (British spelling) here proved to be a major impediment at 18d.

I assume that this is meant to be a double definition and crypticsue has marked it as such in her review. However, I must confess that I had real difficulty understanding the second definition as I cannot imagine using the word in that manner.

I found the following definitions for edgeways (or edgewise):
  • The Chambers Dictionary[1]: in the direction of the edge; sideways
  • Chambers 21st Century Dictionary[2]: sideways; in the direction of the edge
  • American Heritage Dictionary[3]: on, by, with, or toward the edge
  • Collins English Dictionary[4,10]: on, by, with, or towards the edge
  • Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary[11]: sideways
Thus I must conclude that were one to step aside they could also be said to  step sideways or  step edgeways.

24a   Fusspot/'s/ second difficult problem (8)

Tickler[4] is an informal, chiefly British term for a difficult or delicate problem.

25a   Learners in swimming-bath going backwards // move along in ungainly style (6)

"learner" = L (show explanation )

The cryptic crossword convention of L meaning learner or student arises from the L-plate[7], a square plate bearing a sans-serif letter L, for learner, which must be affixed to the front and back of a vehicle in various jurisdictions (including the UK) if its driver is a learner under instruction.

hide explanation

Swimming bath[5,10] (also swimming baths[5,10] or swimming-bath[1,2] or swimming-baths[1,2]) is a British term for a swimming pool, especially a public indoor one.

26a   Essential // to redraw triangle (8)


1d   Where you may end up in stitches in more ways than one (7)

2d   Contender // Frank was a consumer (9)

3d   Money // that's often resisted (6)

4d   Big boss // arranged credit or information on real diversifying (8-7)

Gen[5] is an informal British term for information ⇒ you’ve got more gen on him than we have.

Director general[5] is a British term for the chief executive of a large organization. It is also an upper mid-level (or lower upper-level) position in the Canadian public service.

5d   Beckon over group // that's used in radio transmission (8)

Entering WAVERING — formed by placing WAVE (beckon) on top of (over) RING (group) — certainly proved to be an obstacle to completing 11a. Although I was never completely comfortable with the definition, it was only when I was unable to solve 11a (even with the aid of a word finder program) that the error finally became apparent.

6d   Restrict // muscle pain (5)

7d   Partner's issue, /being/ on flight first (7)

14d   Average toff // has good intentions (5,4)

Toff[5] is a derogatory, informal British term for a rich or upper-class person.

Swell[5] is dated slang for a fashionable or stylish person of wealth or high social position a crowd of city swells.

15d   Global // flier (8)

17d   Man // gains weight (7)

18d   Drama, son /becoming/ one of the glamorous idle rich? (7)

Once I had sorted out 23a, this clue rapidly fell into place. In fact, it was my inability to find a solution here (even after resorting to electronic help) that caused me to revisit 23a.

20d   Leg got broken /in/ little bar (6)

A toggle[5] is a short rod of wood or plastic sewn to one side of a coat or other garment, pushed through a hole or loop on the other side and twisted so as to act as a fastener.

22d   No end of good fortune concerning // money (5)
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

1 comment:

  1. Some clever clues, but by no means a one-star for me. Too many traps set for the unwary. 23a fouled me up as well.