DT 25943

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25943

Hints and tips by Tilsit

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

Another pleasant start to the week from the Monday Maestro. Nothing terribly demanding and the usual mix of clues to encourage the newer recruits to the Cryptic World. I feel the puzzle gets off to a bit of a shaky start with the first few clues, but then gets into its stride and delivers what we expect on a Monday.

The spaces between the curly brackets hide the answer, and highlighting that space will reveal it. As usual, I’d love to hear your thoughts on the puzzle. Don’t be afraid, you’re among friends! If it’s your first time posting, it can take a little while for your post to appear, as first posts are always moderated to prevent spammers, but don’t let that put you off.

1a Time when the hands come together (6)
{TWELVE} A cryptic definition to get us started today. Think of the hands of a clock. It’s a slightly weakened clue as the hands could come together at 3:15, 4:20, 5:25 etc.

4a Cadet due for promotion, having been taught well (8)
{EDUCATED} An anagram of cadet due is needed here. Promotion seems a bit weak for me.

9a Instrument that won’t play a principal part (6)
{AGENCY} Quite a popular word in Telegraph puzzles, three or four outings in the past few weeks. This is , I think, a sort of cryptic definition.

10a Just take a trip in the twilight (8)
{EVENFALL} Not a word I have used recently. A simple word sum. A word for “just” + a word for “take a trip” = a word for “twilight”.

12a Rifle fire (4)
{SACK} Double definition. A word for rifle as in “search through roughly”, and a word for “dismiss”.

13a He will shortly ring — for your reply (5)
{HELLO} Shorten “He will” and add a letter that looks like a ring. You should see what you say when the phone rings.

14a It’s purely symbolic (4)
{LILY} Cryptic definition. What are you sometimes said to be as pure as?

17a Was dirt-cheap? Hardly! (4,3,5)
{COST THE EARTH} One of my favourite clues today. Think of an expression that is the opposite of “dirt cheap” and contains a word for soil or dirt.

20a He sent a cable setting out financial position (7,5)
{BALANCE SHEET} An anagram of “He sent a cable” reveals ” a financial position”.

23a Employed you and me and another chap (4)
{USED} The Definition here is “employed”. Two short words needed

24a Enter the office uninvited? (5)
{USURP} A cryptic definition. If you become a leader without authority, you might do this.

25a We are — or used to be (4)
{WERE} Short version of we are……

28a Lift to reveal switch (8)
{ELEVATOR} Another nice surface reading. This time you need an anagram of “to reveal”

29a Army retreat, then change direction to do this (6)
{ATTACK} Think of an abbreviation for an army unit. Retreat means it needs to be reversed, and add to it to a nautical word meaning to change direction. The whole clue then provides the definition as such.

30a Girl was about to enter without warning (8)
{UNAWARES} A girl’s name (think of Ms Stubbs the actress) + a short word for “about” inside WAS – a word that means “without warning”.

31a Seem a very quiet listener (6)
{APPEAR} A + a musical abbreviation for pianissimo (very quiet) + something that listens = a word for “seem”.

1d Indisposed star can’t perform (8)
{TRANSACT} An anagram of “star can’t” will lead you to a word meaning perform.

2d Queen duty-bound to keep physically fit (8)
{EXERCISE} An abbreviation for our Queen inside a word meaning “duty”.

3d Failing to become a deputy (4)
{VICE} Double definition. A failing, or sin that means the same as part of a title for someone who is a deputy.

5d Foolhardy rascal can show concern (5-3-4)
{DEVIL MAY CARE} “Foolhardy” is the definition here. A word sum is needed “Rascal” + “can” + “show concern”

6d Is unable to lean over (4)
{CANT} Double definition clue.

7d Distressing twitch about to irritate (6)
{TRAGIC} A word for a “twitch” with one meaning “to irritate” inside.

8d They hold up shelves (6)
{DELAYS} Double definition. “They hold up” and “shelves” as in to put off.

11d Soldier-husband who tries to supply all one’s needs (7,5)
{GENERAL STORE} A word for a rank of soldier (top end) + a word meaning “to husband” = Somewhere to get your supplies.

15d Band that breaks up? (5)
{STRAP} A word meaning “a band” which when reversed means “breaks up”

16d Good man gets a warning to say nothing and hide away (5)
{STASH} An abbreviation for someone who does lots of good together with a “warning” to say nothing” – put them together and you get a word meaning “to hide away”

18d Make a union defer tea break (8)
{FEDERATE} An anagram of DEFER TEA which means to make a union out of something.

19d One who takes off in a hurry? (8)
{STREAKER} Think Erika Roe!

21d Foreign office desk? (6)
{BUREAU} Don’t see the point of the question mark. A foreign language word for an office, and a word for a desk.

22d Information a female found in Switzerland (6)
{GENEVA} You need a word for information, plus a girl’s name (Think Peron).

26d A convict turned up for the festivity (4)
(GALA) Reverse the name for an old prisoner

27d Finish second best (4)
{STOP} “Finish” is the definition. And you need an abbreviation for a second + a word meaning “best”.

Thanks again for an enjoyable start to the week.

[Apologies for the late publication, but my computer problems still persist.  I am going to scrap the new wireless home hub (the flashy BT one that is heavily advertised!)and go back to the old USB one to see if that makes any difference!.  BD]


  1. Dr Mark
    Posted June 1, 2009 at 1:58 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Ahhhhhhh…….. I had 1a down as MIDDAY…. of course….foxed me, that did….now I can get on with the rest…..

  2. bigboab
    Posted June 1, 2009 at 2:19 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Thoroughly enjoyable and nicely easy to start the week. My first crossword for a week or so as I have been away. Love the new format. I have had a lot of difficulty with getting on the ‘net for some weeks now, I too have the BT hub.

  3. Barrie M
    Posted June 1, 2009 at 4:41 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Nice puzzle, enjoyed this one!

  4. pianydd
    Posted June 1, 2009 at 5:01 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Enjoyed this too, but fell into the ‘midday’ trap early on!

  5. Greenhorn
    Posted June 1, 2009 at 5:58 pm | Permalink | Reply

    After yesterdays ST disaster I got all bar 9a -did think of agency but dismissed it, 13a silly me, 14a I thought the expression was the driven snow-never heard of the lily in this context , 14a thought of but dismissed and 7d -thought of tic but got no further

  6. Little Dave
    Posted June 1, 2009 at 8:41 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Like some others I kicked off with 1a “midday” – far better answer but it scuppered my top left hand corner! 11d stumped me but an obvious answer too! Was quite pleased with my effort today.

  7. Marian
    Posted June 1, 2009 at 9:35 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Fortunately got 1a so did ok initially but stuck on 10a and 14a. My best effort in weeks. Your site has really raised my game so thank you…

    • Julian
      Posted June 1, 2009 at 11:01 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Re. your thoughts on 1a, twelve o’clock is indeed the only time when the hands come together on an exact number- 4.20 etc is not such a time, as the hour hand will be slightly past 4 at that point, so it would be 4.22 ish.

  8. john middleton
    Posted June 2, 2009 at 12:06 pm | Permalink | Reply

    still cant get 10 across even****, word for a trip, probably come to me when I;m not looking.

    • gazza
      Posted June 2, 2009 at 12:35 pm | Permalink | Reply

      It’s what pride goes before in the proverb.

      • john middleton
        Posted June 3, 2009 at 8:39 am | Permalink | Reply

        Thanks completly off track,I had trip in my mind as an outing

  9. Lysander
    Posted June 2, 2009 at 12:32 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I too went with “midday”(still think it is a better answer than “twelve”)

  10. Ali P
    Posted June 4, 2009 at 9:54 am | Permalink | Reply

    This is my first post so I hope I’m doing it right!
    My friend and I (also coincidentally called Big Dave) have been teaching ourselves do to the Telegraph Crossword for a while now and the recent discovery of your site has been a godsend!
    Just one teensy weensy problem though….we often retire to the pub to attempt to finish it, and once we’re completely stuck we resort to mobile devices to check out your tips. We have not yet found a way of highlighting and seeing the white text using our Blackberries! Usually the hint is enough so it doesn’t matter, but for today’s crossword the ONLY one we got stuck on was the only one where your hint was more cryptic than the clue!! (9a). Almost drove us to tears :-)
    If anyone can tell us how to uncover the hidden text using a Blackberry we’d be eternally grateful. Thanks again for the all the absolutely sterling work!

    • Posted June 4, 2009 at 10:46 am | Permalink | Reply


      Firstly welcome to the blog and you have posted in the correct place for DT 25943. We also get emails to advise us of any new comments.

      I use a Palm Treo, which runs Windows Mobile and (unfortunately) Internet Explorer. On that you can press and hold the stylus to bring up the right click menu and then choose “Select All” which will reveal all of the answers. You may be able to do something similar.

      • Ali P
        Posted June 4, 2009 at 12:15 pm | Permalink | Reply

        Hi Tilsit/Big Dave
        Ahah – the right click menu “select” doesn’t reveal the text, but it did give me an idea. I can copy the text (which is still invisible whilst I’m doing so) and then can paste it into another application and – hey presto!!
        Thanks very much.

  11. Ali P
    Posted June 4, 2009 at 9:58 am | Permalink | Reply

    Oops sorry should have said, my post was referring to Monday’s crossword, 25943.

  12. Tilsit
    Posted June 4, 2009 at 10:02 am | Permalink | Reply

    Thanks Ali

    I have a Blackberry Storm and will have a play later today and see if I can make the highlighting work.

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