Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Tuesday, August 1, 2017 — DT 28429

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle Number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 28429
Publication Date in The Daily Telegraph
Wednesday, May 17, 2017
Jay (Jeremy Mutch)
Link to Full Review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 28429]
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


Jay never fails to deliver an engaging puzzle and this is no exception.

I did need to call in the electronic reinforcements to complete the southwest corner. However, I needed only the gentlest possible nudge to point me in the right direction. I am sure they resented being disturbed for such a trivial task. It is reassuring to see from the comments on Big Dave's Crossword Blog that many others also had difficulty with the two clues in question (22a and 15d).

I will cast my vote with the 2Kiwis for 2d as Clue Of the Day.

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 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   Exercise /requiring/ words of encouragement (4-2)

5a   Manages to get // redesigned hive accepted by experts (8)

9a   Docked support vehicle at // game (8)

Baccarat[5] is a gambling card game in which players hold two- or three-card hands, the winning hand being that giving the highest remainder when its face value is divided by ten.

10a   One's batting // bottle is undone by this (6)

Diverging from the approach taken by the 2Kiwis, I have marked this clue as a double definition.

In cricket, an opener[2] is either of the two batsmen who begin the batting for their team [remember, in cricket, batsmen always bat in pairs].

Scratching the Surface
I believe the surface reading alludes to a cricket batsman losing his confidence.

Bottle[5] is an informal British term denoting the courage or confidence needed to do something difficult or dangerous ⇒ I lost my bottle completely and ran.

11a   Aviators with female in agony /must get/ fuel (8)

"aviators" = RAF (show explanation )

The Royal Air Force[5] (abbreviation RAF) is the British air force, formed in 1918 by amalgamation of the Royal Flying Corps (founded 1912) and the Royal Naval Air Service (founded 1914).

hide explanation

Paraffin[10] (also called paraffin oil) is the British name for kerosene.

12a   Party chief/'s/ sphere of influence (6)

13a   Dogs eating last of dinner /for/ miners (8)

15a   Yield // from planned economy rejected (4)

17a   Part of small hotel, originally // upmarket (4)

What is he talking about?
In Comment #5 on Big Dave's Crossword Blog, Beaver writes [I] expected Victoria to feature in the [illustration] for 17a ... no Oscar for David this year apparently.
Victoria Beckham[7] (née Adams) is an English businesswoman, fashion designer, model, and singer. In the late 1990s, Beckham rose to fame with the all-female pop group Spice Girls, and was dubbed Posh Spice by the July 1996 issue of the British music magazine Top of the Pops.

She is married to the renowned English former professional footballer [soccer player] David Beckham. He has made cameo appearances in several films[7], including Guy Ritchie's 2017 King Arthur: Legend of the Sword. British morning television host Piers Morgan mocked Beckham's performance in that production as being 'Oscar-worthy' according to an article from the web site of the London Evening Standard [Do you remember that newspaper from yesterday's puzzle?].

19a   Two ducks in New Forest /getting/ tired (8)

"duck" = O (show explanation )

In cricket, a duck[5] is a batsman’s score of nought [zero] ⇒ he was out for a duck. This is similar to the North American expression goose egg[5] meaning a zero score in a game.

In British puzzles, "duck" is used to indicate the letter "O" based on the resemblance of the digit "0" to this letter.

hide explanation

Scratching the Surface
The New Forest[7] is an area of southern England which includes one of the largest remaining tracts of unenclosed pasture land, heathland and forest in the heavily populated south east of England. It covers southwest Hampshire and extends into southeast Wiltshire and towards east Dorset.

20a   Problem seen in Standard // column (6)

Scratching the Surface
The London Evening Standard[7] (often referred to as simply The Standard) is a local, free daily newspaper, published Monday to Friday in tabloid format in London, owned by Russian businessman and former KGB agent Alexander Lebedev.

It is the dominant local/regional evening paper for London and the surrounding area, with coverage of national and international news and City of London finance. In October 2009, the paper ended a 180-year history of paid circulation and became a free newspaper, doubling its circulation as part of a change in its business plan.

21a   Grannie's lost // income from investments? (8)

22a   Short // temper? (6)

Short[5] (noun) is a British term for a drink of spirits served in a small measure* or, as Collins English Dictionary puts it, a short[10] is a drink of spirits as opposed to a long drink such as beer.

* A measure[5] is a container of standard capacity used for taking fixed amounts of a substance.

What did they say?
In their review on Big Dave's Crossword Blog, the 2Kiwis write The short here is a measure delivered by a publican.
Publican[5] is a British term for a person who owns or manages a pub.

23a   A woman of the cloth accepts no church // state (8)

"church" = CE (show explanation )

The Church of England[10] (abbreviation CE[10]) is the reformed established state Church in England, Catholic in order and basic doctrine, with the Sovereign as its temporal head.

hide explanation

24a   Marine bank anticipating the Spanish // nonsense (8)

Dogger Bank[5] is a submerged sandbank in the North Sea, about 115 km (70 miles) off the north-eastern coast of England. This part of the central North Sea is covered by the shipping forecast area Dogger.

"the Spanish" = EL (show explanation )

In Spanish, the masculine singular form of the definite article is el[8].

hide explanation

25a   The First Lady, 50, seen in New York // regularly (6)

"The First Lady" = EVE (show explanation )

In the Bible, Eve[5,10] is the first woman, mother of the human race, fashioned by God from the rib of Adam, companion of Adam and mother of Cain and Abel*.

* not to mention Seth and her other sons and daughters[Gen 5:4]

hide explanation


2d   Fine leaves boss of kitchen covering a // problem (8)

"fine" = F (show explanation )

F[5] is an abbreviation for fine, as used in describing grades of pencil lead [a usage that Oxford Dictionaries surprisingly characterizes as British].

hide explanation

3d   Can he con criminal? // Absolutely not! (2,6)

4d   Minister's responsibility /for/ output of artist (9)

5d   An unexpected turn of events, /and/ isn't he a litigant in a muddle? (1,5,2,3,4)

The phrase sting in the tail[5] denotes an unexpected, typically unpleasant or problematic end to something the Budget comes with a sting in the tail—future tax increases.

6d   Devil with evidence of debts // showing lack of respect (7)

Note that the clue refers to "debts" in the plural.

7d   French wine circle entertaining old boy up /for/ hot food (8)

The French word for wine is vin[8].

Vindaloo[10] is a type of very hot Indian curry.

8d   Brawn /as/ speciality (8)

14d   Fancy ordering a // barrier for some immigrants (3,6)

The Rio Grande[5] is a river of North America which rises in the Rocky Mountains of southwestern Colorado and flows 3,030 km (1,880 miles) generally south-eastwards to the Gulf of Mexico, forming the US-Mexico frontier from El Paso to the sea.

15d   Framed // Frenchman after company acted (8)

The French word monsieur[8] (abbreviation M[8]) means 'gentleman' or 'man'.

16d   Residence /or/ fine home within the outskirts of Dorking (8)

Scratching the Surface
Dorking[7] is a market town in Surrey, England 21 miles (34 km) southwest of London.

17d   Unusual prejudice seeing no judge initially /offering/ treatment such as this (8)

In this clue, the setter clues the letter "J" as "judge initially". He could just as well clued it as "judge" since J[2] (plural JJ) is the abbreviation for judge.

18d   American revolutionary with chewed cigar left // such spirit (8)

Surgical spirit[5] is a British term for denatured alcohol, typically perfumed, used for cleaning and disinfecting the skin or medical instruments before an injection or surgical operation.

19d   Delicate // bit of cloth found in record cabinet (7)
Key to Reference Sources: 

[1]   - The Chambers Dictionary, 11th Edition
[2]   - Search Chambers - (Chambers 21st Century Dictionary)
[3]   - TheFreeDictionary.com (American Heritage Dictionary)
[4]   - TheFreeDictionary.com (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] - CollinsDictionary.com (Collins English Dictionary)
[11] - TheFreeDictionary.com (Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary)
[12] - CollinsDictionary.com (Webster’s New World College Dictionary)
[13] - MacmillanDictionary.com (Macmillan Dictionary)
Signing off for today — Falcon

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