Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Wednesday, October 7, 2020 — DT 29289

Puzzle at a Glance
Puzzle number in The Daily Telegraph
DT 29289
Publication date in The Daily Telegraph
Tuesday, February 18, 2020
Link to full review
Big Dave's Crossword Blog [DT 29289]
Big Dave's Crossword Blog review written by
Mr K
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


The combination of 2d and 9a in the northwest corner held out long after the rest of the clues had been vanquished. In this, I was not alone as evidenced by the comments on Big Dave's Crossword Blog.

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.

Markup Conventions
  • "//" - marks the boundary between wordplay and definition when no link word or link phrase is present
  • "/[link word or phrase]/" - marks the boundary between wordplay and definition when a link word or link phrase is present
  • "solid underline" - precise definition
  • "dotted underline" - cryptic definition
  • "dashed underline" - wordplay
  • "double underline" - both wordplay and definition
Click here for further explanation and usage examples of markup conventions used on this blog.


1a   Feverish // girl with nervous twitch (7)

5a   Boring // unruly adolescent with debts? (7)

Ted[2] is short for Teddy boy[5], a slang term originally applied to a young man belonging to a subculture in 1950s Britain characterized by a style of dress based on Edwardian fashion (typically with drainpipe trousers, bootlace tie, and hair slicked up in a quiff* and a liking for rock-and-roll music. The name comes from from Teddy, pet form of the given name Edward (with reference to Edward VII's reign). Judging by the entry in the Chambers 21st Century Dictionary, it would appear that the term Teddy boy[2] is now applied to any unruly or rowdy adolescent male.

* Quiff[3,4] is a chiefly British term for a prominent tuft of hair, especially one brushed up above the forehead.

9a   Thieves // oddly set to be restrained by court orders (7)

Dubious Synonym?
Are court orders not rulings rather than rules? Apparently, not necessarily. In law, a rule[10] is an order by a court or judge.

10a   Dubious // cult trapping American quietly (7)

"quietly " = P [music notation]

Piano[3,5] (abbreviation p[5]), is a musical direction meaning either (as an adjective) soft or quiet or (as an adverb) softly or quietly.


11a   Each person/'s/ so stiff after end of exercise (9)

This clue brought a smile once the penny dropped. Stiff[5] is used in the informal sense of a dead body.

12a   Master /and/ student get paid (5)

"student " = L [driver under instruction]

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.

Automobile displaying an L-plate


13a   Tense requests /for/ jobs (5)

"tense " = T [grammar term]

Grammatically speaking, t.[10] is the abbreviation for tense.


15a   Spinning Jenny, to me, /is/ fun (9)

Scratching the Surface
The spinning jenny[5] was a machine for spinning with more than one spindle at a time, patented by James Hargreaves in 1770.

17a   Educated // Conservative is livid, unfortunately, about Spain (9)

"Conservative " = C [member of British political party]

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

The Conservative Party[5] is a major right of centre British political party promoting free enterprise and private ownership that emerged from the old Tory Party* under Sir Robert Peel in the 1830s and 1840s.

* 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.


"Spain " = E [IVR code]

The International Vehicle Registration (IVR) code for Spain is E*[5] (from Spanish España).

Spanish Licence Plate Format
(The IVR code is on the left below the EU flag emblem)


Dubious Synonym?
Does educated necessarily imply civilised?

19a   Sleazy nightclub limiting Romeo/'s/ enthusiasm (5)

"Romeo " = R [NATO Phonetic Alphabet]

In what is commonly known as the NATO Phonetic Alphabet[7]*, Romeo[5] is a code word representing the letter R.

* officially the International Radiotelephony Spelling Alphabet


22a   Call on // model after six (5)

23a   Meal // turning bakers fat (9)

25a   Strips // bones, eating most of another (7)

26a   Greek god with one leg // wasting away (7)

In Greek mythology, Eros[5] is the god of love, son of Aphrodite — the equivalent in Roman mythology being Cupid.

"leg " = ON [cricket term]

In cricket, the leg[5] (also called leg side) is another name for the on[5] (also known as on side), the half of the field (as divided lengthways through the pitch) away from which the batsman’s feet are pointed when standing to receive the ball ⇒ he played a lucky stroke to leg.

The other half of the field is known as the off[5] (also called off side).


27a   Daughter, rejecting most of pudding, // got up (7)

"daughter " = D [genealogy]

In genealogies, d[5] is the abbreviation for daughter Henry m. Georgina 1957, 1s 2d*.

* Henry married Georgina in 1957. Their marriage produced 1 son and 2 daughters.


Here and There
Whereas, in North America, the term pudding[5] specifically means a dessert with a soft or creamy consistency, in Britain it denotes a much broader range of sweetened usually cooked desserts.

While the word pudding clearly does not encompass every dessert, it would seem to include the vast majority — certainly far more than in North America. Collins COBUILD Advanced English Dictionary describes dessert[14] as a sweet dish such as fruit or a pudding, that you eat at the end of a meal.

In the UK, pudding[5] is also another name for the dessert course of a meal. Although it would sound bizarre to a North American ear, if a Brit were to ask What’s for pudding?, the response might well be Apple pie.

The word dessert[10,12] can also have different meanings in Britain. As in North America, it can mean the sweet, usually last course of a meal. However, it can also denote (especially formerly) fruit, dates, nuts, etc, served at the end of a meal after, or in place of, the sweet course. So, it would appear, one might conclude a meal with a pudding course followed by a dessert course.

Got up[10] is used not to mean rose from one's bed but in the informal sense of dressed oneself in a particular way, especially showily or elaborately.

28a   Flipping crazy golfer's after new // holes (7)

Ernie Els[7] is a South African professional golfer, who has been one of the top professional players in the world since the mid-1990s — and one who makes frequent visits to Crosswordland.

"new " = N [abbreviation used on maps]

N[5] is an abbreviation (chiefly in place names) for New ⇒ N Zealand.



1d   Force the Queen to release // fanatic (7)

"force " = F [symbol used in physics]

In physics, F[5] is a symbol used to represent force in mathematical formulae.


"the Queen " = ER [regnal cipher of Queen Elizabeth]

The regnal ciphers (monograms) of British monarchs are initials formed from the Latin version of their first name followed by either Rex or Regina (Latin for king or queen, respectively). Thus, the regnal cipher of Queen Elizabeth is ER[5] — from the Latin Elizabetha Regina.

* A cipher[5] (also cypher) is a monogram[5] or motif of two or more interwoven letters, typically a person's initials, used to identify a personal possession or as a logo.


2d   One hopes you're entering these // pleas? (7)

The first definition refers to the solver of this puzzle; the second to responses to charges in court.

3d   Reveal youngster's opening // the box (5)

Telly[5] is an informal British term for television ⇒ (i) there’d been a cowboy film on telly; (ii) a black-and-white telly.

4d   Doctor cures most // clients (9)

5d   Cross // yard following inspection (5)

6d   Showed // heads of department increasing shamelessness and messed around (9)

7d   Aspiration to leave hospital and be worthy of // work (7)

"hospital " = H [symbol used on street signs]

H is a symbol for 'hospital' used on street signs.


8d   Partly fasten it askew, lifting // material (7)

Satinet[5] is a variant spelling of satinette, a fabric with a similar finish to satin, made partly or wholly of cotton or synthetic fibre.

14d   Results // so-so until reforms (9)

16d   After day in prison, European intended to ignore a // verdict (9)

The jug[5] is an informal term for prison ⇒ three months in the jug.

"European " = E [as in E number]

E[1,2] is the abbreviation for European (as in E number*).

* An E number[1,4,10,14] (or E-number[2,5]) is any of various identification codes required by EU law, consisting of the letter E (for European) followed by a number, that are used to denote food additives such as colourings and preservatives (but excluding flavourings) that have been approved by the European Union.


17d   Embarrassed after chap/'s/ plastered (7)

Cove[5] is a dated informal British term for a man he is a perfectly amiable cove.

Origin: Mid 16th century: perhaps from Romany kova ‘thing or person’.

18d   Absurd to change leader -- /that's/ plain to see (7)

Risible[5] is an adjective meaning provoking laughter through being ludicrous a risible scene of lovemaking in a tent.

20d   Assume // one quarry contains silver (7)

"silver " = AG

The symbol for the chemical element silver is Ag[5] from Latin argentum.


21d   Makes bigger // offers (7)

23d   Corrupt Democrat // located (5)

"Democrat " = D [member or supporter of US political party]

A Democrat[5] (abbreviation D[5] or Dem[5] or Dem.[5]) is a member or supporter of the Democratic Party[5], one of the two main US political parties (the other being the Republican Party), which follows a broadly liberal programme, tending to support social reform and minority rights.


24d   Noted // family heartlessly wrapping the present (5)

Key to Reference Sources: 

  [1]   - The Chambers Dictionary, 11th Edition
  [2]   - Search Chambers - (Chambers 21st Century Dictionary)
  [3]   - (American Heritage Dictionary)
  [4]   - TheFreeDictionarycom (Collins English Dictionary)
  [5]   - Lexico (formerly Oxford Dictionaries Online) (Oxford Dictionary of English)
  [6]   - Lexico (formerly Oxford Dictionaries Online) (Oxford Advanced 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)
[14]   - (COBUILD Advanced English Dictionary)

Signing off for today — Falcon

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