Saturday, October 22, 2022

Saturday, October 22, 2022 — Welcome to the New Forum


Welcome to the North American Daily Telegraph Cryptic Crossword Forum.

Although the National Post has ceased publishing cryptic crosswords, those of us addicted to them can continue to get our daily fix direct from The Daily Telegraph. In addition to various subscription options offered by the newspaper itself (the online edition of the paper, the Telegraph Puzzles website, as well as Android and Apple apps), The Daily Telegraph is also available via PressReader which is available not only by subscription but also as a free service provided to members by many public libraries.

In addition to having a new name, the blog will appear once a week on Saturday instead of daily. The format will also change. Rather than review each puzzle in detail, I plan to comment on selected clues focusing on Briticisms that are likely to be unfamiliar to North American solvers. I also invite readers to request explanations for any clues they are struggling with.

I didn't manage to include all of this weeks puzzles, running out of time before deadline.

Leave a comment to tell what you think of the new direction and format.

Statement From the National Post

I am sure we were all shocked and disappointed by the demise of cryptic crosswords in the National Post. I also did not appreciate the replacement puzzle being described in an article published on October 15 as not "the diabolical British-style [cryptic] puzzles that include references to Latin prefixes, obscure nymphs from Greek mythology and lines from Milton’s Paradise Lost. This is — many will be relieved to hear — not what is in store with the Universal daily and weekend puzzles."

This prompted me to write the following to Rob Roberts, the Editor in Chief:

Dear Mr. Roberts,

I have been a subscriber to the National Post since day one, having had my Financial Post subscription converted to a National Post subscription when the paper was launched. For many years I have been an avid fan of the cryptic crosswords carried by the National Post, both the weekday Daily Telegraph puzzle as well as the weekend Cox and Rathvon puzzle.

Your decision to discontinue these features is deeply disappointing. To add insult to injury, I found the gratuitous, disparaging remarks about cryptic crosswords made in the article published on October 15 introducing the replacement puzzle to be extremely insulting.

I have therefore cancelled my subscription.

to which he replied:

Hello, thanks for your note.

We understand your displeasure. Those features have been very popular among our readers for a very long time, and we’ve heard from a lot of people since this change was made.

There were a suite of puzzle and comics changes made for financial reasons across the Postmedia Network. Each paper exchanged their own collection of offerings for a unified collection from a single provider. 

It saved us a lot of money. And as we transition our legacy media company to a leaner, digital-oriented company we need to find any savings we can, especially those that spare us other, more painful cuts. We hope you find new favourites among these new puzzles and features.

We continue to work very hard to create a newspaper you continue to find worth subscribing to. I hope you change your mind.


Rob Roberts
Editor in Chief, National Post
365 Bloor Street East, Toronto

Emily and Henry: Not Adieu but Au Revoir

I have also been in touch with Emily and Henry who seem to have been equally blindsided by this move by the National Post. I am sure they will not mind if I share some of their remarks with readers:

We were touched by the comments attached to our last puzzle. Are Canadians inherently kinder than we Yanks are? It’s often seemed so to us. Again, we thank you and your readers for all the amiably thoughtful critiques over the years.

Now that we have some more time on our hands, we should be able to pick up the pace on launching our own website. You’ll be among the first to hear when it’s ready to go!

All the best,

Emily and Henry

What's New At Big Dave's Crossword Blog

We saw the last DT Cryptic published by the National Post in the Friday, October 13, 2022 edition of the paper. It was DT 30005 which had appeared in The Daily Telegraph on Saturday, June 4, 2022. Those of you switching your source of puzzles to The Daily Telegraph will find yourself at DT 30120 which was published by the DT on Monday of this week.

A lot happened at Big Dave's Crossword Blog between June and October. In late August a bit of drama occurred when a reader took exception to the tone of some comments directed toward him by Miffypops. Some senior reviewers supported the reader's position and called out Miffypops resulting in Miffypops deciding to leave the blogging team followed by a few other bloggers in sympathy with him. This occasioned a shakeup in blogging assignments.

Expect to find pommers and myself sharing responsibility for Monday reviews, Mr K has moved to Thursday with a new blogger, Twmbarlwm, replacing him, the 2Kiwis retain their Wednesday slot, Senf has replaced Deep Threat on Friday, and crypticsue is now handling the hints on Saturday while continuing to split reviewing duty for that puzzle with Rahmat Ali.

Notes on This Week's Puzzles

The following commentary supplements reviews of these puzzle found on Big Dave's Crossword Blog, to which links are provided in the tables below.

Publication date
Puzzle number
Monday, October 17, 2022 DT 30120 Campbell (Allan Scott)
Link to review
DT 30120 – Review Falcon ★★★ ★★★


   1a  Robber /in/ gang, Italian (6)

IT for Italian can come from either the abbreviation It. (referring to the Italian language) used to describe the etymology of words in dictionary entries or an informal British name for Italian vermouth "Bartender, I'll have a gin and it".

12a   Jellyfish // petrifying woman (6)

In Greek mythology, the gorgons[5] were three sisters, Stheno, Euryale, and Medusa, with snakes for hair, who had the power to turn anyone who looked at them to stone. The only mortal gorgon was Medusa[5] whom Perseus killed by cutting off her head.

21a   Tension /caused by/ lover hiding note (6)

Some Brits appear to have had trouble with this clue, likely since, in the UK, the anglicized spelling me for this musical note seems to be more prevalent than the Italian spelling mi with which we are familiar in North America.

23a   Daily, one's mother /makes/ personal appeal (8)

Daily and char are British terms for a cleaning lady.

26a   Member of the clergy, // American patriot, approaching North Dakota (8)

Paul Revere[16B] (1735–1818) was an American patriot and silversmith, best known for his night ride on April 18, 1775, to warn the Massachusetts colonists of the coming of the British troops.


  5d   Duck taken by each female // thief (3,4)

Tea leaf is Cockney rhyming slang for thief.

The word duck in the wordplay might mislead UK solvers who are apt to interpret it as a cricket term. In British puzzles, "duck" is commonly used to indicate the letter "O" based on the resemblance of the digit "0" to this letter. In cricket, a duck[5] (short for duck's egg) 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.

  6d   Snare // wild ones crossing over (5)

More cricket. On cricket scorecards, the abbreviation O[5] denotes over(s), an over[5] being 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.

15d   Performer, // stripper, removing top after short time (3-6)

If you peruse the comments on Big Dave's Crossword Blog, you will find that some readers were rather shocked by what happens in the back rooms of strip clubs.

17d   Object // the Parisian found under lorry (7)

Lorry is the common British name for a truck. Artic[5] is an informal British name for an articulated lorry.

Publication date
Puzzle number
Tuesday, October 18, 2022 DT 30121 Anthony Plumb (Unconfirmed)
Link to review
DT 30121 – Review Twmbarlwm ★★ ★★★★


  1a   Athletes who get the highest // value petrol annoyed with Shell initially (4-8)

Petrol is the British term for gasoline.

12a   Fool European maiden by holding large // meeting (8)

Yet another cricket term. In cricket, a maiden[5], also known as a maiden over and denoted on cricket scorecards by the abbreviation m.[10], is an over (see Monday 6d above) in which no runs are scored.

We also see European cluing the abbreviation E and large cluing L, a symbol designating a size of clothing.

13a   Hard interrupting Italian novelist, editor // reflected (6)

Umberto Eco (1932–2016) was an Italian novelist.

H is an abbreviation for hard that one would see on pencils designating its grade of lead.

15a    Egg on sandwiches Mussolini, perhaps, // made (8)

Il Duce (the leader) was the title assumed by Italian fascist leader Benito Mussolini (1883–1945).

18a    Old fogey // ruins a do, dancing (8)

Notable quote: "I object most strongly to dinosaurs being equated with old fogeys. The dinosaurs dominated our planet for some 200 million years and finally disappeared through no fault of their own. I cannot see the human race getting anywhere near such an achievement." (Grammarian on Big Dave's Crossword Blog)

19a    Feature // a page penned by religious school (6)

One finds p[5] as an abbreviation for page in textual references ⇒ see p 784.

26a    This writer is one day behind rear of coconut // shy (5)

In the surface reading, coconut shy[2,5] is a British term for a fairground stall where people throw balls at coconuts to try to knock them off stands and thereby win a prize.

Shy[5] is a dated term meaning (as a noun) an act of flinging or throwing something at a target or (as a verb) to fling or throw (something) at a target ⇒ he tore the spectacles off and shied them at her.

27d    Ford maybe // parking next to hotel guest (9)

The symbol P for parking is in common use on street signs.

Gerald Ford (1913–2006) was the 38th President of the US 1974-7.


  1d    Meaty food -- // this might go on one's crumpet (4,3)

Crumpet is British slang for the head among other things (as you can see in Green's Dictionary of Slang).

In the surface reading, crumpet[16B] refers to a light soft yeast cake full of small holes on the top side, eaten toasted and buttered which is popular in Britain. They somewhat resemble English muffins but are made from batter rather than dough.

A porkpie[10] (or porkpie hat[10]) is a hat with a round flat crown and a brim that can be turned up or down.

As the solution, a British pork pie[5,10,14] is a round, tall pie filled with minced seasoned pork, which is typically eaten cold.

I have not marked the clue as a double definition as the numeration of the second part does not march that given in the clue.

  2d    Actress, say, removing soft // coat (5)

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.

  4d    In jail, guard picked up // something to eat (4)

The ugli or ugli fruit[7] is a Jamaican form of tangelo, a citrus fruit created by hybridizing a grapefruit (or pomelo), an orange and a tangerine. The name is a variation of the word "ugly", which refers to the fruit's unsightly appearance, with rough, wrinkled, greenish-yellow rind, wrapped loosely around the orange pulpy citrus inside.

  5d    Tense about a certain // prize (8)

One would encounter t.[10] as the abbreviation for tense in the field of grammar.

  6d    Journey around grand // upland area (5)

Mainly in US slang, G is a symbol for grand (a thousand dollars or pounds)[4,10]. Brits would appear to use the term grand in this sense but not the abbreviated version.

22d    Loaded // gun's first removed from convict hideout (5)

Lag[5] is an informal British term for a person who has been frequently convicted and sent to prison ⇒ both old lags were sentenced to ten years' imprisonment.

Publication date
Puzzle number
Wednesday, October 19, 2022 DT 30122 Unknown
Link to review
DT 30122 – Review 2Kiwis ★★★ ★★★


  1a    Believer // a bit wet? Not the fellow being imprisoned (10)

Wet[5] is an informal British term meaning (as an adjective) showing a lack of forcefulness or strength of character ⇒ they thought the cadets were a bit wet or (as a noun) a person exhibiting such characteristics ⇒ there are sorts who look like gangsters and sorts who look like wets.

In British political circles, the name wet[5] is applied to a Conservative with liberal tendencies ⇒ the wets favoured a change in economic policy. It is a term that was frequently used by former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher for those to the left of her in the British Conservative Party [which must have been just about everyone].

  6a    Desdemona's husband maybe /in/ a desolate place (4)

Desdemona[7] is a character in William Shakespeare's play Othello. She is a Venetian beauty who enrages and disappoints her father, a Venetian senator, when she elopes with Othello, a Moor.

Moor[5] is a chiefly British term for a tract of open uncultivated upland, typically covered with heather.

15a    Saw // agent dressed in brown (6)

A trepan[2] is a type of small cylindrical saw that was formerly used for removing part of a bone, especially part of the skull.

16a    A gee-gee pinned by the German // weapon (6)

In German, der[8] is one of several forms the definite article may assume.

Gee-gee[5] (in children's use or in racehorse betting) is an informal British term for a horse ⇒ (i) Even as the wrapping paper was ripped off, he worried whether his choice of choo-choos over gee-gees was the right one; (ii) Betters can also wager on other major sports, including golf, tennis and rugby, as well as the gee-gees.

20a    Country // almost liberated with introduction of political party? (6)

The African National Congress[5] (abbreviation ANC) is a South African political party and black nationalist organization.


  1d    I am upset, your setter? // I am speechless! (4)

When the creator of the puzzle references themself in the clue, one must replace the reference with a first person pronoun (I or ME).

  2d    Heads? // Crazy people (4)

Nut[3,4] is slang for the human head.

  4d    One using brain is engaged by boffin // who works in the lab? (15)

Boffin[2] is a colloquial British term for a scientist engaged in research, especially for the armed forces or the government.

  7d    Like mode of transport // traversing sporting venue? (10)

I would say ground[5] is a chiefly term for an area of land, often with associated buildings and structures, used for a particular sport ⇒ (i) a football ground; (ii) Liverpool’s new ground is nearing completion.

13d    Short period imbibing champagne substitute /that's/ more flavoursome? (7)

Asti[7] (formerly known as Asti Spumante) is a sparkling white Italian wine.

14d    Guards // so large doing turns (7)

Gaolor[10] is a British variant spelling of jailer.

20d    Repair // fine kitchen vessel without its lid (6)

F[5] is an abbreviation for fine, as used in describing grades of pencil lead.

As the definition, repair is used as a noun.

23d    Garment // is taken up for a queen to wear (4)

In the United Kingdom and the other Commonwealth realms, during the reign of a queen, Regina[5] (abbreviation R[5]) [Latin for queen] denotes the reigning monarch, used following a name (e.g. Elizabetha Regina, Queen Elizabeth — often shortened to ER) or in the titles of lawsuits (e.g. Regina v. Jones, the Crown versus Jones — often shortened to R. v. Jones).

Publication date
Puzzle number
Thursday, October 20, 2022 DT 30123 silvanus
Link to review
DT 30123 – Review Mr K ★★★★ ★★★★


  9a    Airline service cross about // supposedly unmissable target? (4,4)

The airline is British Airways (BA) and the service is the Royal Navy (RN).

10a    Skill /of/ primarily kind old doctor in Cumbrian area (4-3)

Cumbria is a county in NW England.

Doctor Who is a British science fiction television program.

11a    Greek character visits second // gravestone, possibly (8)

Nu[5] is the thirteenth letter of the Greek alphabet (Ν, ν).

12 Little old man retired, lacking in desire (6)

15a    Rum, maybe /from/ Italy, son left half-finished (4)

The International Vehicle Registration (IVR) code for Italy is I[5] [from Italian Italia].

In genealogies, s[5] is the abbreviation for son(s) m 1991; one s one d.

Rùm[7] (a Scottish Gaelic name often anglicised to Rum) is one of the Small Isles of the Inner Hebrides in Scotland.

16a    Entering southern strait, Norman occasionally /is/ sleepy (9)

The Solent[7]is the strait that separates the Isle of Wight (an island on the southern coast of England) from the mainland of England.

21a    Got a load of // fish, we're told (4)

Ide[5] is another name for the orfe[5], a silvery freshwater fish of the carp family, which is fished commercially in eastern Europe.

24a    Issue // anaesthetic (6)

In the second part of the clue, "number" is used in the whimsical cryptic crossword sense of 'something that numbs'.

27a    Caught golfer /making/ embarrassing error (7)

On cricket scorecards, the abbreviation c[5] or c.[2,10] denotes caught (by).

Bernhard Langer[7] is a German professional golfer.

Clanger[5] is an informal British term for an absurd or embarrassing blunder ⇒ the minister had dropped a massive political clanger*.

* To drop a clanger[10] means to make a very embarrassing mistake.

28a    Took over from // daughter behind console (8)

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


  2d    Tripe // small number in Essex noshed regularly (8)

Tripe[5] is an informal term* for nonsense or rubbish (foolish words or speech) you do talk tripe sometimes.

* "Formally", tripe is the first or second stomach of a cow or other ruminant used as food.

  5d    PM over /in/ Irish county (4)

Theresa May[7] was Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 2016 to 2019.

In cricket, 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.

Mayo[5] is a county in the Republic of Ireland, located in the north-west in the province of Connacht.

  7d    Understands it's stated patient individual /requires/ cosmetic surgery (4,3)

In the Bible, Job[5] was a man whose patience and piety were tried by undeserved misfortunes. However, in spite of his bitter lamentations, he remained confident in the goodness and justice of God. His name has come to epitomise patience In dealing with this series of difficult circumstances, she displayed the patience of Job.

11d    City // Spice Girl barely missed (9)

The Spice Girls[7] are an English pop girl group formed in 1994. The group comprises Melanie Brown, also known as Mel B ("Scary Spice"), Melanie Chisholm, Mel C ("Sporty Spice"), Emma Bunton ("Baby Spice"), Geri Halliwell ("Ginger Spice") and Victoria Beckham ("Posh Spice").

14d    Prime student to limit pressure before American // exam (6-4)

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.

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

The eleven-plus[7] (11+) is a standardized examination administered to some students in England and Northern Ireland in their last year of primary education, which governs admission to grammar schools and other secondary schools which use academic selection.

18 Respectful // First Lady has tear succeeding Republican (8)

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* [Gen 2:18-25].

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

A Republican[5] (abbreviation R[5])  is a member or supporter of the US Republican Party.

19d    Cook recipe accessed by upper-class // gourmet (7)

In Britain, U[5] is used informally as an adjective (in respect to language or social behaviour) meaning characteristic of or appropriate to the upper social classes ⇒ U manners.

20d    Play /and/ series of books attracting magazine (7)

In Crosswordland, the term "books"or similar expressions such as today's "series of books"is commonly used to clue either the Old Testament (OT) or the New Testament (NT). Today the setter leaves it up to the solver to figure out which one.

Hello![7] is a weekly magazine specializing in celebrity news and human-interest stories, published in the United Kingdom since 1988. It is the United Kingdom local edition of ¡Hola!, the Spanish weekly magazine. A Canadian version of the magazine, Hello! Canada, has been published since 2006.

Othello[7] (in full The Tragedy of Othello, the Moor of Venice) is a tragedy by William Shakespeare, believed to have been written between 1601 and 1604.

Publication date
Puzzle number
Friday, October 21, 2022 DT 30124 proXimal (Steve Bartlett)
Link to review
DT 30124 – Review Senf ★★/★★★★ ★★/★★★★


  1a    King having // coronation (8)

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 King Charles is CR[5] – from the Latin Carolus Rex if tradition be followed. However, the Royal Mint is issuing coins with the inscription Charles III so perhaps Latin really is a dead language (or half-dead language) and King Charles will be known as Charles Rex.

* A cipher[5] (also spelled 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.

  5a    Decline // accompanying soldiers in retreat (6)

The Corps of Royal Engineers[7], usually just called the Royal Engineers (abbreviation RE), and commonly known as the Sappers[7], is a corps of the British Army that provides military engineering and other technical support to the British Armed Forces.

11a    Superhuman removing leader // of ancient people (5)

Ionic[16B] is an adjective meaning of or relating to Ionia, its inhabitants, or their dialect of Ancient Greek. Ionia[16B] was an ancient region on the western coast of Asia Minor and on adjacent islands in the Aegean that was colonized by the ancient Greeks.

12a    Simple // game with short cue (6)

In Crosswordland, a game is apt to be rugby union[10] (abbreviation RU[5]), a form of rugby football played between teams of 15 players (in contrast to rugby league[5], which is played in teams of thirteen).

13a    Neighbourhood // against chains being put on little space (8)

Versus[16B] (abbreviation v or, especially US, vs) is a preposition meaning (especially in a competition or lawsuit) against or in opposition to.

22a    Perhaps Poirot's // man given many tasks (8)

Hercule Poirot[7] is a fictional Belgian detective, created by English writer Agatha Christie (1890–1976).

In Greek and Roman mythology, Hercules[5] was a hero of superhuman strength and courage who performed twelve immense tasks or ‘labours’ imposed on him and who after death was ranked among the gods.

26a    Bung // kid stuck in empty bottle (5)

Bung[10] (noun) is British slang for a bribe.

In the surface reading, bung[16B] denotes a stopper, especially of cork or rubber, for a cask, piece of laboratory glassware, etc.

27a    Fellow nurses worn-out // continued at length (7,2)

At Oxford and Cambridge universities, a fellow[10] is a member of the governing body of a college who is usually a member of the teaching staff.

A don[10] is a member of the teaching staff at a university or college, especially at Oxford or Cambridge.

28a    Overindulge /in/ Greek island group (6)

Cos is an alternative spelling of Kos[5], a Greek island in the southeastern Aegean, one of the Dodecanese group. It is the home of cos lettuce[5] (known to North Americans as romaine[5]).

Indulge means to pamper or spoil someone ⇒ My mother indulges the children dreadfully. Thus, overindulge[2] must mean to pamper or spoil someone excessively.

29a    Good man eyed new // moon (8)

The abbreviation G for good may come from its use in education as a grade awarded on school assignments or tests[a] or in numismatics as a grade of coin[7].

[a] Collins English to Spanish Dictionary

Ganymede[16B] is the brightest and largest of the four Galilean satellites of Jupiter, and the largest in the solar system (named for a beautiful Trojan youth in Greek mythology who was abducted by Zeus to Olympus and made the cupbearer of the gods).

I will return later with the Down clues.

Publication date
Puzzle number
Saturday, October 22, 2022 DT 30125 {TBD}
Link to review
DT 30125 – Hints
DT 30125
{TBD} {★★★★★} {★★★★★}

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.

Commentary on the Saturday puzzle will be added later.

Symbols and Markup Conventions
  •  "*" - anagram
  • "~" - sounds like
  • "<" - indicates the preceding letters are reversed
  • "( )" - encloses contained letters
  • "_" - replaces letters that have been deleted
  •  "†" - indicates that the word is present in the clue
  • "//" - 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
  • "wavy underline" - whimsical and inferred definitions
Click here for further explanation and usage examples of the symbols and markup conventions used on this blog.


Sources referenced in the blog are identified by the following reference numbers. The reference numbers themselves are hyperlinks to the entry in the source being referenced. Click on the number to view the source.

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)
[15]     - (Penguin Random House LLC/HarperCollins Publishers Ltd )
[16]    - (Random House Unabridged Dictionary)
[16B]  - (Collins English Dictionary )

Signing off for today — Falcon


  1. Good morning to you Falcon and to the rest of the Saturday morning cryptic club of former National Post subscribers. The new NP puzzles are rubbish. But the news from Emily and Henry is very welcome. I subscribed (see 1d in today's DT) to the DT and am doing the daily puzzles online. I found this past week's selection to be quite tough. I did not take notes so I don't have anything in particular to highlight. I'll try to do so in the coming weeks. I hope everyone is still with us and is keeping well.


  2. Sal has posted a comment this morning but he left it on the other blog entry. I've taken the liberty of posting a copy here:

    Falcon, I hope you know how much pleasure your blog has given. And C&R of course. I will not buy the NP any more, after having dropped the OC for the same reason several years ago. I guess I'll give the G&M a try and look for the DT on line. Farewell fellow bloggers. Sal.

  3. Good day Falcon and friends,
    In case you missed it, there is a Cox and Rathvon puzzle posted on the WSJ today and it is free! Here is the link:


    1. Hi, MG. This link is great! Thank you.
      I also wanted to say that I am honoured to have shared a love of mountain stories and a mutual MAC experience with you ( congratulations on your additional degrees - always a significant life accomplishment ) and I wish you all the best. I certainly related to your "farewell" message where you talked about carrying the C&R paper puzzle around all week with you as you mastered the language of cryptics; I did exactly the same. I don't know that I will get there with the DT ones but I will try. In the meantime, let's hope that we will have a wonderful reunion when C&R launch their website.
      Take care and all my very best.

  4. I too have subscribed to the online version, need to get myself a working printer, much prefer a paper copy than a little screen. And as a bonus I get the quick crossword as well

  5. Goodness, this is disappointing. I can only hope for a happy ending from Emily and Henry.

  6. Good Sunday morning to everyone from a soon to be rainy NYC.
    Falcon, thank you for keeping the light on here and the thorough updates.
    While we anxiously await the launch of C&R's website, I have a few thoughts and questions.
    I haven't as yet given the DT cryptics a go. As a threshold matter, I didn't see how to print the puzzle once I accessed it through PressReader. Any suggestions?
    I have taken to solving the Sunday cryptic in the Guardian which is set each week by Everyman. It's available at no cost online. His puzzles seem to be generally accessible to we non-Brits. Any thoughts on how his cryptics compare to the DT's? Which has the steeper learning curve for us non-Brits?
    My best to all,

    1. Richard,

      Glad to see you haven't deserted us.

      Re printing from Pressreader, here is what I do:

      These instructions are for a PC (Apple may differ)

      Note: In the original posting of this comment (which I have deleted and hope you didn't see), I mixed up the left and right mouse buttons.

      Position the puzzle so all of it is visible on screen (left click on the puzzle once or twice to enlarge the image -- it may or may not take two clicks, subsequent clicks toggle the size larger and smaller; press and hold the left mouse button and drag the puzzle to a different position if necessary; F11 toggles full screen mode which also helps; you can also increase and decrease the size of the image with the scroll wheel on the mosue);
      Right click on the puzzle and a menu window opens;
      Select Print and another menu window opens;
      Select Print Custom Area and a selection indicator appears (green dotted outline);
      Drag the two round dots in the corners so the box outlines the area you want to print;
      Click the green print button (upper right corner) and a Print window opens;
      If necessary, make any desired selections and click the green Print button;
      You are now in your normal local printer process

      Let me know if this works for you.

      Re Everyman:

      Following a bit of sleuthing, I have been able to determine that Everyman is not the pseudonym of a single setter but an identity assumed by whoever currently sets the Everyman puzzle. The puzzle appears in The Observer, the Sunday sister paper to The Guardian (which publishes Monday through Saturday). However, you will find the Everyman puzzle on The Guardian website.

      Here is what I have pieced together about Everyman from various sources:

      The Everyman crossword in The Observer goes back as far as 1945. It has been set by various people over the years, including none other than the great D.S. MacNutt (aka Ximenes) whose book The Art of the Crossword is a must-read for all cruciverbalists.

      Dorothy Taylor, who died in 2009, aged 98, was for 30 years compiler of the Everyman crossword, a task that she shared with her friend and colleague Alec Robins.

      Allan Scott (aka Ascot in The Times, The Spectator and The Listener), Falcon in the Financial Times and Campbell in Toughie crosswords in The Daily Telegraph) began setting the Everyman crossword in 1994. He apparently was still setting them in April 2013 when he posted a comment on Big Dave's Crossword Blog as Everyman.

      From January 2019, I found the following report: "Most recently the setter of the Everyman Crossword has been Colin Gumbrell ... Sadly I hear that Colin has been forced by ill health to stop composing crossword puzzles. I’m told that the 20th January [2019] puzzle (No. 3771) is to be his last."

      I have not been able to determine who currently sets the Everyman puzzle.

      On Cryptipedia (Click here), you can find a listing of British cryptic crossword puzzles with difficulty ratings, as well as other information such as whether access is free or by subscription and links to the puzzles and reviews.

      It rates the Sunday Everyman puzzle as Easy, the weekday Guardian puzzles (various setters) as Easy-hard and The Daily Telegraph Cryptic Crossword (various setters) as Easy/medium.

      The difficulty level of the Cryptic Crossword in The Daily Telegraph roughly increases from Monday to Friday. Allan Scott (Campbell), a former setter of the Everyman puzzle, sets the Monday puzzle and his puzzles are generally at the lower end of the difficulty scale. I share reviewing duty for his puzzles on Big Dave's Crossword Blog and find that it is not uncommon for him to use North American terms in his puzzles (great for me but such references sometimes baffle British solvers).


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