Posted by RatkojaRiku on December 15th, 2010
In my view, a typical Dac puzzle: medium degree of difficulty, with sound clues that keep one guessing just long enough before resolving themselves in a perfectly satisfactory manner. I even learnt a thing or two, which is always the icing on the cake with a daily cryptic – the cricketer in 10a was unknown to me. Some deceptive wordplay, e.g. ‘doctor’ used as a verb in 24a, rather than as an anagram indicator or abbreviation. My personal favourite is 16d, both for the wordplay and for the Europhile sentiment of the surface reading.
*(…) indicates an anagram
1 JESUIT – JE (=in Lourdes I, i.e. the French word for I) + SUIT (=become)
4 PHYSICAL – homonym of “fizzy” (=sparkling) + CAL(m) (=composed, i.e. as an adjective, “largely” indicates word is to be shortened)
9 HANGAR – *(NAG) in HAR(d) (=cold, “mostly” indicates word is to be shortened)
10 ENGINEER – double definition; the reference is to Farokh Engineer, the Indian Test cricketer of the 1960s and 1970s
12 DEBUS – sub-ed(itor) (=newspaper employee; “briefly” indicates abbreviation); reversed (“turns”); the definition is to alight, i.e. to get off a bus.
13 IRON CROSS – *(RO + I SCORN) + S (=small); anagram indicator is “ridiculously”; RO = Retired Officers
14 ROOM AT THE TOP – ROO (=bounder, abbreviation of kangaroo) + MATTHE(w) (=gospel writer, “abridged” indicates word is to be shortened) + TOP (=finest); the reference is to the 1957 novel by John Braine about social climbing in post-war Britain.
18 TURN OF PHRASE – *(SHERPA); one of those clever clues whose answer is a cryptic definition of a word in the clue.
21 THE STATES – T (=time) + HES(i)TATES (=delays; “one leaves” indicates the letter I is to be dropped)
22 DIEGO – i.e. (=id est, “that is” is Latin) in *(DOG); wild is anagram indicator
23 FLAMINGO – FLAMING (=burning) + O (=love, i.e. zero in tennis)
24 GIRLIE – RIG (=doctor); reversed (“turning back”) + LIE (=romance, i.e. untruth, fabrication)
25 ANALECTS – AN + C (=hundred) in *(TALES); analects are collected literary fragments
26 GLANCE – LAN(d) (=country, “most of” indicates word is to be shortened) in GCE (=A level); the reference is to the exams typically taken by UK students at the age of 18; the expression “look here” tells us that the entry will be a word meaning “look”.
1 JOHN DORY – JOHN (=can, slang word for toilet) + O (tiny bit of oil, i.e. just one letter) in DRY (=baked)
2 SONGBOOK – cryptic definition: number is to be understood as song as in “to perform a number”
3 IMAMS – first letters (“leaders”) of Islam Meeting At Mosques Sometimes; & Lit
5 HAND OVER FIST – HAND OVER (=surrender) + FIs + T (end of, i.e. last letter of, conflicT); an F1 is a fighter plane, the 1 being substituted for an I in the grid entry
6 SAILCLOTH – *(THIS + LOCAL); “manufactured” is the anagram indicator
7 CREDOS – RED (=socialist) in COS (a Greek island)
8 LYRIST – Y (=unknown, in algebra) + R (=right) in LIST (=catalogue of names)
11 SITTING TIGHT – SITTING (=session) + TIGHT (=drunk)
15 AQUITAINE – QUIT (=leave) in A, A (A=adult, x 2) + IN + E; the word “east” is part of the wordplay, since the region of Aquitaine is actually in south-west France.
16 GAME PLAN – MEP (= European politician, i.e. Member of European Parliament) in GALA (occasion for celebrating) + N (=new)
17 VERONESE – ONE in VERSE (=poetry); Veronese refers to the Italian city of Verona.
19 STAFFA – MAN (=(to)staff, as a verb) + A; the island of Staffa is part of the Inner Hebrides off the coast of Scotland
20 NEVADA – hidden in CanADA VENturing; reversed (“northwards”, used in down clues to indicate a vertical reversal)
22 DRILL – D (=initially Drug, i.e. first letter) + RILL (=running water); a drill is a furrow for the planting of seeds