DT Cryptic No 25897

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25897

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

We have come to know what to expect on a Wednesday – a good solid, enjoyable puzzle.


1a No place for students with closed minds? (4,10)
{OPEN UNIVERSITY} – a cryptic definition of this educational establishment whose teaching is carried out by correspondence and by radio and television

9a Treatment for bruises, being in charge of English forwards (3,4)
{ICE PACK} – this charade of IC (In Charge) E(nglish) and the forwards in a game of Rugby gives a treatment for bruises that is often as simple as a bag of frozen peas

10a Pairs romantically entangled in close-up (7)
{COUPLES} – these romantic pairs are an anagram (entangled) of CLOSE-UP

11a Fascinated by aspects of Macintosh (4)
{INTO} – a word meaning fascinated can be found hidden in (aspects of) MacINTOsh

12a After gaol has change of heart, guard becomes number one (10)
{GOALKEEPER} – swap the middle letters of GAOL (has change of heart) and add a guard and you get, possibly, Calamity James

14a Country valued more highly than sovereign once (6)
{GUINEA} – this old coin was worth one pound and one shilling (£1.05) and is also the name of a country

15a Working hard as learner boss promises to pay (8)
{STUDIOUS} – a word meaning working hard as learner comes from a charade of STUD (boss) and, another crossword favourite, IOUS (promises to pay)

17a Religious leader and Edward talked (8)
{RABBITED} – another charade, this time of RABBI (religious leader) and TED (Edward) gives a slang word for talked

18a One and a third months in Northern state capital (6)
{JUNEAU} – JUNE (one month) and AU(gust) (a third of a month) give the capital of Alaska – it can be found in The Mine!

21a Design part of opera around movie in which all the stars can be seen (10)
{PLANETARIA} – PLAN (design) and ARIA (part of opera) around ET (movie) give machines showing the motions and orbits of the planets and stars, often by the projecting of their images on to a domed ceiling (in which all the stars can be seen) – note that this is the plural of the more common singular word

22a Hardly fair (4)
{JUST} – a straightforward double definition

24a Embarrassing amount of power carried by prize (7)
{AWKWARD} – a word meaning embarrassing comes from KW (KiloWatt / amount of power) inside (carried by) a prize

25a Belt is what one wears (7)
{CLOBBER} – both parts of this double definition are slang words, the first for to strike very hard (belt) and the second for clothes (what one wears)

26a Group helping patients with uplifting and moving performance (9,5)
{STRETCHER PARTY} – a nice cryptic definition of a group of people who carry injured patients


1d Giving as one’s view how longing follows love (7)
{OPINING} – PINING (longing) follows O (love) to give a word meaning giving as one’s view

2d It uses current provision for comfortable retirement (8,7)
{ELECTRIC BLANKET} – another nice cryptic definition of a device used to warm the bed

3d Part of Connecticut ahead, or another state (4)
{{UTAH} – the other state is hidden (part of) in  ConnecticUT AHead

4d Container for black stuff changed to pink (6)
{INKPOT} – this container is an anagram (changed) of TO PINK

5d Go up, perhaps, as special case, not before time (8)
{ESCALATE} – special signals that an anagram of CASE precedes LATE (not before time) to give a word meaning to ascend or descend on an escalator (go up, perhaps) – once again, you are likely to get the answer first and then resolve the wordplay

6d Sound upset, but regrouping – that’s very impressive (10)
{STUPENDOUS} – but regrouping signals this clever anagram of SOUND UPSET to give a synonym for very impressive – upset, which is usually an anagram trigger, is here part of the anagram

7d Contact info for person, booked earlier, now put in cell? (9,6)
{TELEPHONE NUMBER} – I looked in vain for an anagram or similar here, but I think it’s referring to the fact that this contact information would once have been in kept a little black book, but is now more usually stored in a cellphone

8d Isis or, possibly, another Egyptian deity (6)
{OSIRIS} – this Egyptian God of the Underworld, Fertility And Agriculture is an anagram (possibly) of ISIS OR – and can be found in The Mine

13d With careful consideration, put back into prison? (10)
{DELIBERATE} – the question mark indicates that if you combine DE and LIBERATE it could, but doesn’t, mean to deprive one of liberty, but does mean with careful consideration

16d Child confused about period relating to display of arms (8)
{HERALDIC} – this anagram (confused) of CHILD is around ERA (period) to give a word meaning relating to the display of coats of arms

17d Provoke disgust about act, initially – thus annul it (6)
{REPEAL} – REPEL (provoke disgust) around A(ct, initially) gives a word meaning t annul

19d Say line at end of play? Absolutely! (7)
{UTTERLY} – a word meaning to say is followed by L(ine) and Y (end of plaY) to give a synonym for absolutely

20d Cleric converted group of friends (6)
{CIRCLE} – converted signals this simple anagram of CLERIC to give a group of friends

23d Bear up, band (4)
{HOOP} – and we finish with a smile on our faces with this reversal (up) of this world-famous bear to give a band

My clue of the day, even though I’ve seen it before, is 23 down.  Do you have a favourite?


  1. Ciaran
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 12:46 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Yes, I too thought 23d was a nice, neat clue. I hadn’t seen it before, so puzzled over it for a while until I caught the meaning of ‘UP’ in cryptic-land.

  2. Chris
    Posted April 9, 2009 at 2:52 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I have recently found this site and just getting into Telegraph cryptics its a great site for a novice to work through problems.

  3. Posted April 9, 2009 at 3:11 pm | Permalink | Reply

    What I try to do is to produce the sort of site that I would have loved 50 years ago, back in the days of Dan Dare and the Mekon!

    We never dreamt then that this sort of thing would ever become possible outside of comic strips.

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