DT Cryptic No 25895 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

DT Cryptic No 25895

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25895

Hints and tips by Big Dave

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

Well, was it worth waiting for?  After all the fuss with the CluedUp site, what we got was another typical Monday Crossword.  Not too difficult, nothing contentious, just a good puzzle to start the week


1a More adventurous sound of rock (6)

{BOLDER} – this word meaning more adventurous sounds like a large rock

4a Fellow who’s learned what’s not relevant (8)

{ACADEMIC} – it seems odd that this word which means a learned fellow should come to mean something that’s not relevant

9a With organ study backing, got paid employment (6)

{EARNED} – the organ of hearing is followed by DEN (study) reversed (backing) to give a synonym for having been paid for employment

10a When special forces transgress with killer (8)

{ASSASSIN} – AS (when) is followed by the Special Air Services and a word meaning to transgress to give this person who kills for fee, reward or political reasons

12a It makes fast speed at sea (4)

{KNOT} – a nice double definition – on the one hand something that is tied in order to make fast and on the other a measure of speed at sea

13a Club fail to declare (5)

{BATON} – this club or stick is derived from the cricketing term to continue batting rather than declare

14a List of French and English articles (4)

{LEAN} – LE (the, French) and AN (English) give to list or incline

17a He’s responsible for naval ships at sea, also drifters (5,3,4)

{FIRST SEA LORD} – a clever anagram (at sea) of ALSO DRIFTERS gives us the head of the Royal Navy

20a Isn’t overpaid, cutting losses (12)

{DEPRIVATIONS} – here cutting signals this clever anagram of ISN’T OVERPAID, giving a synonym for losses

23a One’s case may rest on it (4)

{RACK} – the shelf where you can place your luggage (case)

24a Stretch over the end of the desk and chastise (5)

{SPANK} – to stretch over like a bridge does, then desK (end of the desk) giving a word that means to physically chastise – clever in that at first sight “over” makes it look as if the “K” is to be inside rather than at the end

25a Brother to Uncle Remus (4)

{BRER} – Uncle Remus narrated the tales of BRothER Rabbit

28a Bird dog gets drunk (8)

{COCKTAIL} – our first bird dog is really a COCK (bird) and to TAIL (dog) giving a mixed drink containing spirits

29a Sort of picture that’s a topic for debate? (6)

{MOTION} – a moving picture that is proposed as a topic for a debate

30a Gardenia affected by taking away water (8)

{DRAINAGE} – an anagram (affected by) of GARDENIA gives a word meaning taking away water

31a Start breeding a bird dog (6)

{BEAGLE} – or second bird dog is a dog that comes from B(reeding) and EAGLE (bird) – I liked the pair of bird dogs that were resolved differently!


1d Stop abruptly when school holiday is cancelled (5,3)
{BREAK OFF} – a neat double definition

2d Old port coming from Labrador (8)
{LARBOARD} – this old term means the opposite side to starboard, and its an anagram (coming from) of LABRADOR

3d They’re down to play bingo (4)
{EYES} – a term that I’m sure is familiar to all bingo players

5d The death rate? Quite the opposite (4,2,6)
{COST OF LIVING} – a cryptic definition of he total cost of goods ordinarily required in order to live up to one’s usual standard

6d Collect one’s pay with a minor rise (4)
{DRAW} – this word meaning collect one’s pay comes from a reversal (rise) of WARD (a minor ) – semordnilaps came up as recently as ST Cryptic No 2477 – Review

7d Many invited to a kind of ball (6)
{MASKED} – M (1000 in Roman numerals / many) and ASKED (invited) combine to give a type of ball in which the dancers have their faces covered

8d Stick around at home like a dog (6)
{CANINE} – a type of stick is placed around IN (crosswordese for home) to give a word that means like a dog

11d Celebrity parachuting in attempt to impress (4-8)
{NAME} – NAME (celebrity) and DROPPING (parachuting) give an attempt to impress

15d A good man always in control (5)
{STEER} – the ubiquitous Saint precedes a poetic word for always to give a word meaning to control, for example, a car

16d Soup that’s good for an Irish boy (5)
{BROTH} – a soup and an Irish expression for an outstanding person

18d Setting great store by a spot of publicity (8)
{HOARDING} – a straightforward double definition

19d Alienate sergeant in mess (8)
{ESTRANGE} – this word meaning to alienate is an anagram (in mess) of SERGEANT

21d Found and copied (6)
{TRACED} – another double definition -found by discovering the whereabouts of and copied by marking the outline on a translucent paper

22d Bill joins a spy organisation as a plant (6)
{ACACIA} – this plant is a charade of AC (account / bill) and CIA (Central Intelligence Agency / spy organisation)

26d English style school (4)
{ETON} – E(nglish) and TON (fashion / style) together give this ubiquitous school

27d Mislay contents of closet (4)
{LOSE} – this word meaning mislay is hidden (contents of) inside the cLOSEt

This morning’s debacle now seems to be over, the back lawn was mown before the rain came, and now this review is complete.

For those in a hurry, here are the answers:

2 comments on “DT Cryptic No 25895

  1. After all that grass you have been on earlier today, which of the clues in the cryptic 25,895 do you see as the best!?

  2. I’ve only reviewed the across clues so far, but I liked the anagram in 17 across, and as a great Everly Brothers fan, I smiled when I saw bird dog come up not once, but twice!

Comments are closed.