DT 25970 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 25970

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25970

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

Nothing too taxing today, but a pleasant challenge with a lot of nice surface readings.
As usual the answers are hidden inside the curly brackets – just select the white space to reveal them.

Across Clues

1a  Frequency of greeting by spiritualist (6,4)
{MEDIUM WAVE} – put WAVE (greeting) after MEDIUM (spiritualist) to get a radio frequency which may not be used for broadcasting for much longer according to a recent government proposal.

6a  What may be put in ring circuit the other way round? (4)
{OPAL} – I think that this is an attempt at an all-in-one clue which does not come off terribly well – put together O (ring) and LAP (circuit) which needs to be reversed (the other way round) to get a type of gemstone which may be put in a ring.

9a  Start to goad aged Australian bounty hunter (4-6)
{GOLD-DIGGER} – string together G (start of Goad), OLD (aged) and DIGGER (informal name for an Australian) to get a person (normally a woman) who enters a personal relationship primarily for material gain (bounty hunter).

10a  Halo given to cover head (4)
{CAPO} – put O (halo, ring that appears around the head of a saintly figure in old religious paintings) after (given to) CAP (cover) to get an Italian word meaning the head of a (normally criminal) organisation.

12a  Doctor’s theory — oddly found in pub (6)
{INTERN} – the odd letters (oddly) of ThEoRy are found inside INN (pub) to get a junior hospital doctor.

13a  Possible known perils now dropped from spray (8 )
{SPRINKLE} – an anagram (possible) of KnowN PERILS (with “now” dropped) produces a synonym for spray.

15a  Withdrawing, seeing reputation damaged (8,4)
{STANDING DOWN} – double definition – a phrase meaning to withdraw or resign from a position or office is constructed from STANDING (reputation) and DOWN (damaged, fallen).

18a  Models for course followed by crossword compilers (12)
{TRENDSETTERS} – a charade of TREND (course) and SETTERS (crossword compilers) produces a word for those who lead the way and are models for others to follow.

21a  Agents covering ceremony start to realise standards (8 )
{CRITERIA} – put CIA (agents) around RITE (ceremony) and the first letter (start) of Realise to get an alternative word for standards.

22a  Appoint minister by name on radio broadcast (6)
{ORDAIN} – the words “radio” and “broadcast” should make you suspect a sound-alike clue, but there’s a neat bit of misdirection here and what we want is an anagram (broadcast) of RADIO followed by N(ame) to produce a word meaning to confer holy orders on someone (appoint minister).

24a  Says more when covering dropped case (4)
{ADDS} – start with AS (when) and include inside it (covering) the case (i.e. outside letters) of DroppeD to get a verb meaning says more.

25a  Where drinks may be served to lawyers in limousines (6,4)
{SALOON BARS} – lawyers are the BAR – put this inside SALOONS (limousines) to get parts of public houses where drinks may be served. I’m not sure that most saloon cars could be termed limousines!

26a  Killer harboured by Windsor Castle (4)
{ORCA} – hidden in (harboured by) WindsOR CAstle is a killer of the sea.

27a  Authority given for each delegation (10)
{PERMISSION} – a charade of PER (for each) and MISSION (delegation) gives us a word meaning authority given.

Down Clues

1d  Married a doctor that’s a hoarder (6)
{MAGPIE} – a charade of M(arried), A GP (doctor) and IE (that is, id. est) gives us the type of bird (or, by derivation, a person) who steals and hoards things.

2d  One delayed support for Germany to expand (6)
{DILATE} – a verb meaning to enlarge or expand is constructed by putting I LATE (one delayed) after (support for, in a down clue) D (the international vehicle registration letter for Germany).

3d  Doesn’t do enough research into reserve players (12)
{UNDERSTUDIES} – double definition – a cryptic way of saying applies oneself too little to academic work, and those people in the theatre (reserve players) who do not normally come on stage but are ready to do so at short notice should a leading player be taken ill.

4d  Salary that comes with seniority (4)
{WAGE} – a charade of W(ith) and AGE (seniority).

5d  Opinions of wives worried about tip (10)
{VIEWPOINTS} – a synonym for opinions is constructed from an anagram (worried) of WIVES which surrounds (about) POINT (tip).

7d  Board to finish production of fish meal (8 )
{PLANKTON} – a charade of PLANK (board), TO and the last letter, i.e. finish, of productioN produce small organisms floating in the sea which provide the food for fish (fish meal).

8d  Unfinished business caused by ill-defined objective (5,3)
{LOOSE END} – a term for something that has been left unfinished or undecided is made from LOOSE (ill-defined) and END (objective).

11d  Digital photographs providing possible evidence? (12)
{FINGERPRINTS} – put together FINGER (digital, i.e. relating to a digit) and PRINTS (photographs) to get the sort of evidence that a SOCO (scenes of crime officer) will be looking for. A pleasing clue!

14d  A bit rude at home, feeling fragile (10)
{INDELICATE} – a charade of IN (at home) and DELICATE (fragile, in the way that Victorian ladies always seemed to be – pass the smelling salts!) to get an adjective meaning earthy or slightly indecent (a bit rude).

16d  Tiger, for example is up and down in such a way of playing (8 )
{STACCATO} – take SO (such) and put inside it an animal (of which tiger is a large example) twice, firstly reversed (up in a down clue) then normally (down) to get a musical term for playing with each note detached or disconnected.

17d  Occasional table, perhaps (8 )
{PERIODIC} – those who completed last Friday’s Toughie will have no problem with this lovely cryptic definition! – a synonym for occasional also relates to the table of chemical elements first published by the Russian scientist  Dmitri Mendeleev in 1869.

19d  Dress worn by footballers for big game trip (6)
{SAFARI} – a SARI (dress) goes around (worn by) FA (Football Association, hence footballers) to produce this term for an expedition to observe or hunt big game.

20d  First son entering state of matrimony creates harmony (6)
{UNISON} – put the first letter of Son inside UNION (state of matrimony) to get a synonym for harmony.

23d  Fashion etiquette (4)
{FORM} – double definition – a verb meaning to conceive or establish (fashion), and the correct way of doing things (etiquette).

The clues I liked today included 3d, 11d, 14d and 19d, but my favourite was 17d. I’d love to hear your views on the puzzle – please leave a comment!

23 comments on “DT 25970

  1. Interesting re 17d, I liked that one (and the killer clue) so much for their elegance and simplicity that I actually took the time to explain how they worked to my wife.

  2. Another single letter for a word w = with, and earlier this week c=about, perhaps a list of the like could be added to The Mine Big Dave!. Did like 17d, but enjoyed 24a.

    1. Kram

      I did think about it, but having got as far as A/a decided that it was a huge task. Why not subscribe to Chambers online for £15 a year? That’s what I do.

    1. Mary
      That’s why we’re here. If you make sure you understand the wordplay for all the clues every day then you’re bound to get to the stage of being able to complete it unaided!

      1. I have been doing the telegraph crosswords for about six weeks now, a big jump from The Sun!! i am thoroughly hooked and getting better, i have completed a few but only with help, I look forward to the day in the distant future when I can do one unaided, in the meantime this site, found accidentally is absolutely brilliant, thanks to all who give their time & energies

        1. Mary
          If you can do all but two clues on a Toughie (as you say below) and can understand the wordplay on the ones you’ve done, then I don’t think that day will be too far distant.

          1. thanks Gazza but good days bad days you know and as it has rained most of today I have had the time!

              1. I know, my brother is watching the cricket!
                We are in West Wales and it has rained all day, though my brother lives 4 miles away says it hasn’t!!

  3. Hi Dave are we having the toughie results today, i found it quite easy but am stuck on 2 clues!!!

  4. Is it me or are these getting much more difficult? How you are supposed to work out 12a is beyond me, by the way we don’t have interns, they are House Officers, interns are an American term.

    1. Barrie

      I updated the Crossword Guide (see sidebar under FAQ) to include even/odd letters only last night.

      I can’t speak for the other bloggers, but I am finding them, in general, getting easier. I think that owes a lot to the benefits of the analysis that blogging forces you to do. It is certainly true that, up to a point, the more you do the better you get.

    2. Barrie
      I agree with Big Dave that the more you get used to analysing the wordplay every day the easier it becomes.
      I was just searching for a relevant bit of the site to point you at for an explanation of oddly/evenly/regularly when Big Dave’s comment arrived – I shouldn’t have been trying to watch the tennis at the same time!

    3. I was pleased to get the chance to point out that the crossword guide is growing every day. Soon I can remove the road works sign!

      1. Interesting, since we started this blog, my acuity at spotting certain clue types (hidden, odd/even, last/first letters, anagrams etc) has increased by a huge amount. Previously I would spot the obvious word solution because of the definition and checking letters, put it in the crossword and move on. Now because I have to explain every Fridays crossword, I don’t move on until I “know” why the answer is what it is, or at least have an idea (for Elgars Toughies for example). I tend to find the crosswords easier, but they take more time. However I do make less mistakes.

  5. Joanne and I haven’t been able to do the crossword for several days, so struggled more today! Just shows that we need to flex our intellectual muscles on a regular basis or they can atrophy…

  6. 10a stumped me – a new word in my vocabulary. I liked this crossword – a slow start and then the mental cogs began to turn. All done bar 10a.

    1. Little Dave
      capo is really a mafia boss so I suppose that we’d translate it as “godfather”.
      How was your day at the cricket?

  7. Six four letter words and three twelve letter ones! Thought I would struggle but managed well in a short time but had to give 10 across some thought.Thanks for your comments.

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