Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Wednesday, July 12, 2017 — DT 28415

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 28415
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Monday, May 1, 2017
Rufus (Roger Squires)
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 28415]
Big Dave's Crossword Blog Review Written By
Miffypops (& Saint Sharon)
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 found this to be a bit more of a challenge than the usual Rufus puzzle, lying at the more difficult end of his range.

I invite you to leave a comment to let us know how you fared with the puzzle.

Error in Today's Puzzle

I am afraid that this section is becoming a regular feature of the blog.

An error was present in Clue 1d in the print edition of The Daily Telegraph in the UK and I expect that the same mistake will surface today in the National Post (show explanation ).

The reason why errors that get corrected in the UK still show up months later in the puzzle in Canada can be understood if one looks at what I believe to be the life cycle of a puzzle:
  1. The setter creates the puzzle and submits it to the puzzle editor.
  2. The puzzle editor and setter refine the puzzle.
  3. The puzzle is distributed in syndication. (Some papers print the puzzle on or close to the date it appears in the UK. Other papers, such as the National Post, print the puzzle weeks or months later.)
  4. The puzzle editor may make changes to the puzzle (with or without consulting the setter) after it has been distributed in syndication. These (and subsequent) changes do not appear in the syndicated puzzle (which has already been distributed).
  5. The puzzle is prepared for print publication. Errors may be introduced during the production process. These errors sometimes also carry forward to the online version of the puzzle.
  6. The puzzle is prepared for online publication. Additional errors may be introduced during this production process but affect only the online version of the puzzle.
  7. The online version of the puzzle is posted to the website.
  8. Errors in the online version of the puzzle (regardless of at what stage they were introduced) are often corrected at some point during the day of publication. Of course, errors in the print edition cannot be corrected.

hide explanation

The clue, as it appeared in the newspaper in Britain was:
  • 1d   Capital reserve we held (3,5)
Apparently, the puzzle is delivered via various online platforms to different audiences and, judging by Miffypops' remarks on Big Dave's Crossword Blog, the clue varied not only between platforms but also within platforms over the course of the day of publication.

As I understand the situation, the clue was first modified to read:
  • 1d   Capital reserve we held in (3,5)
and finally to read:
  • 1d   Reserve we held in capital (3,5)

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 semi-all-in-one (semi-&lit.) clues. All-in-one (&lit.) clues and cryptic definitions are marked with a dotted underline. Explicit link words and phrases are enclosed in forward slashes (/link/) and implicit links are shown as double forward slashes (//).


1a   Sounds of denial -- // straight from the horse's mouth? (6)

There is an implicit second instance of the word "sounds" in the clue. Were we to explicitly insert it, the clue would read:
  • Sounds of denial -- // [sounds] straight from the horse's mouth? (6)
In his review, Miffypops inexplicably underlines the wordplay instead of the definition.

4a   Show more tolerance, // stupid (8)

9a   Was set back /and/ deserts (6)

As a definition, rather than a verb meaning abandons as it is in the surface reading, deserts[5] are desolate areas of land with little or no vegetation, typically covered with sand.

10a   Wear ties knotted oddly, // so to speak (2,2,4)

Contrary to what Miffypops shows in his review, the anagram indicator is "knotted oddly" rather than merely "knotted".

12a   Listener and learner // one's seen in the Lords (4)

"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

In the UK, the House of Lords[5] (or, more informally, the Lords[10]) is the higher chamber of Parliament, composed of peers* and bishops.

*peer[5] is a member of the nobility in Britain or Ireland, comprising the ranks of duke, marquess, earl, viscount, and baron.

13a   Sally going over year /in/ journal (5)

14a   Turning, knocks /into/ pole (4)

17a   Working as a tailor perhaps /is/ likely to grow on one (5-7)

20a   Record playing in the small hours -- // 'Mood Indigo'? (12)

Indigo[5] is a shade of blue toward the violet end of the spectrum. Thus "Mood Indigo" denotes a blue or unhappy mood.

Scratching the Surface
"Mood Indigo"[7] (1930) is a jazz composition and song, with music by Duke Ellington and Barney Bigard and lyrics by Irving Mills.

23a   Get out of this! (4)

24a   Cancel // fight (5)

25a   [Exude an air of sadness (4)

28a   Prior /is/ member of clergy in religious environment (8)

Scratching the Surface
A prior[5] is the male head of a house or group of houses of certain religious orders, in particular:
  1. the man next in rank below an abbot; or
  2. the head of a house of friars.

29a   Grubby residence (6)

30a   Mockery /made of/ undergarment found in carrier (8)

In Britain, a vest[5] is an undergarment worn on the upper part of the body, typically having no sleeves. The garment that North Americans (as well as Australians) call a vest is known in the UK as a waistcoat.

31a   Rodin sculpted number from Rome // of blond blue-eyed appearance (6)

Scratching the Surface
Auguste Rodin[5] (1840–1917) was a French sculptor. He was chiefly concerned with the human form. Notable works: The Thinker (1880) and The Kiss (1886).


1d   Reserve we held in // capital (3,5)

This clue likely appears in the National Post as (see the section Error in Today's Puzzle above):
  • 1d   Capital reserve we held (3,5)
As an anagram indicator, "reserve" is to be read as "re-serve" meaning to serve again (in a different manner).

The wordplay is an anagram (reserve) of WE HELD IN (which is rather difficult to decipher when one is missing a bit of the fodder).

2d   Sign /of/ fashionable writer (8)

3d   Pay attention to // the editorial, in part (4)

5d   Offering help // of the orchestra, for example? (12)

6d   What one is tasked to do /for/ tax (4)

7d   Former wife, French and cuddling politician, /offers/ excuse (6)

"French and" = ET (show explanation )

In French, et[8] is a conjunction meaning 'and'.

hide explanation

"politician" = MP (show explanation )

In Britain (as in Canada), a politician elected to the House of Commons is known as a Member of Parliament[10] (abbreviation MP[5]) or, informally, as a member[5].

hide explanation

8d   Try to get aboard // cutters (6)

"aboard" = 'contained in SS' (show explanation )

In Crosswordland, you will find that a ship is almost invariably a steamship, the abbreviation for which is SS[10]. Thus phrases such as "aboard ship" or "on board ship" (or sometimes merely "aboard"or "on board") are Crosswordland code for 'contained in SS'.

hide explanation

11d   It decides about union disputes (7,5)

15d   Take off /from/ landing area (5)

16d   Get a kick // out of men, Joyce? (5)

18d   Servant, though elderly, // performing multiple tasks (8)

Man[5] is a dated term for a manservant or valet ⇒ get me a cocktail, my man.

Manifold[5] is a noun denoting something having many varied parts, forms, or features — and therefore presumably capable of performing multiple tasks.

19d   One gets car to start after machine breaks down (8)

This is an &lit. (all-in-one) clue. The entire clue is both definition and wordplay — of course, under different respective interpretations.

21d   Order posted /for/ tyrant (6)

22d   Channel Islands serve up the last word /in/ film (6)

The Channel Islands[5] (abbreviation CI[5]) are a group of islands in the English Channel off the northwestern coast of France, of which the largest are Jersey, Guernsey, and Alderney. Formerly part of the dukedom of Normandy, they have owed allegiance to England since the Norman Conquest in 1066, and are now classed as Crown dependencies.

26d   Brief note /expresses/ policy (4)

27d   Double act // that's now extinct (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)
[12] - (Webster’s New World College Dictionary)
[13] - (Macmillan Dictionary)
Signing off for today — Falcon

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