DT 26037

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26037

Hints and tips by Gazza

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **** Enjoyment ****

Friday’s puzzle is more often than not both the most difficult and the most entertaining one of the week, and this one is no exception. I have reservations about a couple of the clues, but overall it was very enjoyable.
As usual the answers are hidden inside the curly brackets – if you’re stuck you can highlight the white space inside to reveal them.
As always we welcome comments. If you’re a regular visitor and have never left a comment, now is the time to introduce yourself and let us know what you like, or don’t like, about the blog!

Across Clues

1a  A top case for Sherlock Holmes? (11)
{DEERSTALKER} – a cryptic definition of the sort of head covering (top case) favoured by the great detective.

7a  May stumble on account of old trick (7)
{CANTRIP} – a charade of CAN (may) and TRIP (stumble) gives us this old Scottish term for a mischievous act.

8a  Like this crossword? It makes one weep, quietly twitching! (7)
{CRYPTIC} – put together CRY (weep), P (piano, quietly) and TIC (twitching) to get the way the Telegraph describes this crossword. The surface reading is very amusing!

10a  Cosmetic material needing an effort (8 )
{TOILETRY} – combine TOILE (a thin cotton or linen dress material) and TRY (an effort) to get a cosmetic.

11a  Slope outside to accommodate sport (3,3)
{SKI RUN} – outside is SKIN – put inside (accommodate) RU (Rugby Union, sport) and you have a slope for cruising down elegantly/falling over and breaking a leg (delete as appropriate).

13a  Fatuous joke suitable for adults once (4)
{GAGA} – this word meaning fatuous is made up of GAG (joke) and A (one-time film classification, now replaced by PG).

14a  Uncommunicative, but made more vigorous (8-2)
{BUTTONED-UP} – double definition – with lips tightly shut (uncommunicative) and ready for action (more vigorous? – I’m not totally convinced that having your tunic done up makes you more vigorous) but “toned up” (more vigorous) [thanks to Alikat for putting me right on this one].

16a  Finger real twitchy? It’s on the trigger here (5,5)
{RIFLE RANGE} – an anagram (twitchy) of FINGER REAL reveals a place where you can practise shooting.

18a  Top man hugged by sweet Sarah (4)
{TSAR} – the top man in pre-revolutionary Russia is hidden (hugged) in sweeT SARah.

21a  Wet — say, after working (6)
{SWEATY} – a lovely all-in-one clue – form an anagram (after working) of WET SAY.

22a  Vibrant English boy in verbal onslaught (8 )
{RESONANT} – put E(nglish) and SON (boy) inside RANT (verbal onslaught) to get a synonym for vibrant.

24a  University ambition cut short, a daughter admitted disgrace (7)
{DEGRADE} – most of the students at university have an ambition to obtain a DEGREe – lose (cut short) the final letter and insert (admitted) A D(aughter) to form a verb meaning to bring shame upon (disgrace).

25a  Being like a guardian that’s awful, real weird! (7)
{TUTELAR} – start with TUT (that’s awful!) and add an anagram (weird) of REAL to produce an adjective meaning in the role of a guardian.

26a  Inflammation after game? Be silent now, suffering (6,5)
{TENNIS ELBOW} – an anagram (suffering) of BE SILENT NOW produces an inflammation of the tendons in the arm, possibly brought on by too much on-court activity.

Down Clues

1d  Desperate man, 101, no good doing the foxtrot maybe (7)
{DANCING} – string together DAN (the desperate character from the Dandy comic who shaved with a blowlamp and ate cow pie with a whole cow in), CI (101 in Roman numerals) and NG (No Good).

2d  One’s paid a student — pounds wasted! (6)
{EARNER} – someone who works for a living (one’s paid) is formed by taking the L (pounds sterling) out of LEARNER (a student).

3d  Very powerful men rush up excitedly, enthralling Anne initially (10)
{SUPERHUMAN} – an anagram (excitedly) of MEN RUSH UP is put around (enthralling) the first letter (initially) of Anne to make an adjective meaning very powerful.

4d  Shrewd maiden leaving protest movement? (4)
{ARCH} – a protest movement is a MARCH – take off the M (maiden over, in cricket) to leave an adjective meaning shrewd.

5d  Brute upset a top man participating in water sport (8 )
{KAYAKING} – the brute is a YAK – reverse it (upset) and add A KING (a top man – the same description that was used in 18a).

6d  Embarrassed about fatigue, gave up work (7)
{RETIRED} – the easiest clue in the puzzle and my “way in” – put TIRE (fatigue) inside RED (embarrassed).

7d  Put into boxes in iced storage possibly (11)
{CATEGORISED} – an anagram (possibly) of ICED STORAGE produces a verb meaning pigeonholed (put into boxes).

9d  One plotting studies holy men, rotter infiltrating (11)
{CONSPIRATOR} – the definition is one plotting and to get it you have to assemble CONS (studies), PI (pious, holy), OR (other ranks, men) and then put inside this (infiltrating) RAT (rotter). It’s neat that the rotter is literally “in filtRATing”.

12d  Get salt sprinkled, catching one insect and another (4,6)
{STAG BEETLE} – put BEE (one insect) inside an anagram (sprinkled) of GET SALT to form another insect.

15d  Engineers wanting stock control (8 )
{RESTRAIN} – a charade of RE (Royal Engineers) and STRAIN (stock) produces a verb meaning to hold back or control.

17d  Goods bringing sudden fear — drug smuggled therein (7)
{FREIGHT} – sudden fear is FRIGHT – put E (Ecstasy, drug) inside (smuggled therein) to get transported goods.

19d  Credulously believe a flighty type (7)
{SWALLOW} – double definition – a verb meaning to be gullible and believe anything is also a small bird with a forked tail.

20d  It can be very warm and wet outside the chalet (3,3)
{HOT TUB} – this is a cryptic definition of a large bath, often outdoors, which is kept filled with hot water. Other than the fact that these can sometimes be found outside chalets in ski resorts, I could not see the point of including ”the chalet” in the clue. Have I missed something? – let me know in a comment if you think so!

23d  House in Home Counties north of motorway (4)
{SEMI} – a type of house is formed from SE (South-East of England, Home Counties) over (north of, in a down clue) MI (M1, motorway).

I liked 8a and 19d, but my clue of the day is 21a. Agree or disagree? – tell us via a comment, and please take the time to grade the puzzle by clicking on one of the stars below.


  1. Bellringer
    Posted September 18, 2009 at 10:39 am | Permalink | Reply

    Prefer the picture to the clue.

  2. Vince
    Posted September 18, 2009 at 11:04 am | Permalink | Reply


    Although I didn’t find this too difficult, I dohave issues with some of the clues:

    1a. I didn’t like “case” for “hat”.

    8a. “Tic” is a noun; “twitching” is a verb. It doesn’t really work for me.

    14a. Like you, I couldn’t see “buttoned-up” being “vigorous”.

    20a. I also didn’t understand “chalet”. But, at least the clue gave you another excuse for a nice picture!

    I learnt another new word today: “cantrip”.

    • Nubian
      Posted September 18, 2009 at 11:16 am | Permalink | Reply

      Cantrip is a new one on me too Vince, I think we are being taken over by the Scots ! Best clue today 9d, although I couldn’t see where the holy men (plural) were I managed to work it out eventually

    • gazza
      Posted September 18, 2009 at 12:07 pm | Permalink | Reply

      1a. I agree
      8a. Chambers gives tic (noun) as a convulsive twitching of certain muscles.
      14a. See comment by Alikat below.
      20a. It was a real chore looking through all those hot tub adverts, but someone has to do it!

      • Vince
        Posted September 18, 2009 at 1:19 pm | Permalink | Reply

        8a. Looking at it like that, I suppose it just about works.

        14a. Well done Alikat!

  3. Alikat
    Posted September 18, 2009 at 11:22 am | Permalink | Reply

    I read 14a as “but, toned up” for “but made more vigorous”

    • Posted September 18, 2009 at 11:25 am | Permalink | Reply

      Welcome to the blog Alikat

    • gazza
      Posted September 18, 2009 at 12:00 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Thanks for that. That makes much more sense.

  4. Yoshik
    Posted September 18, 2009 at 11:42 am | Permalink | Reply

    A solid crossword that for once I waltzed through.

    Strangely somedays one is a wavelength with a compiler.

    Enjoyed 21a but 8a hard a certain humour.

    Why is the spell chick on here adulterated English? Sorry I mean American English?

  5. Lea
    Posted September 18, 2009 at 1:22 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Very enjoyable today – particularly enjoyed 14a as I had intepreted it as alikat did. Got stuck for a long time on 1a and it was only after filling the down ones in that I got it. Now I see why it was from your hints.
    Thanks – lovely pictures by the way.

  6. Barrie
    Posted September 18, 2009 at 1:32 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Enjoyable puzzle today, loved 8a and 26a. Learned 2 new words today, Cantrip and Tutelar. My favourite though is def 1d esp as Strictly starts tonight!

  7. NathanJ
    Posted September 18, 2009 at 1:34 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Hi Gazza

    This was a really good puzzle complemented by an equally good review by yourself. Thanks for that.

    Don Manley rules!

    I managed to finish this without help but the blog was useful in that it helped me to understand fully a couple of the word-plays.

    Monday and Friday are my two favourite days as we get Roger Squires and Don Manley respectively, two of the best known and most distinguished setters in the crossword world. I’m glad they’re regular setters for the Telegraph.

  8. bigboab
    Posted September 18, 2009 at 1:35 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Nice enjoyable crossword if a bit easy. Great picture for 25a!

    • bigboab
      Posted September 18, 2009 at 1:37 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Sorry, meant 20d of course.

  9. gnomethang
    Posted September 18, 2009 at 2:41 pm | Permalink | Reply

    RE 20D, I think that you need something to indicate a luxury or some form of resort – Hot tubs are a bit more prevalent now but without that reference it is just “something outside”.
    Liked 25A and 12D but didn’t find this as hard as most this week.

  10. newtocryptic
    Posted September 18, 2009 at 4:29 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Lots to enjoy but a few clues a little bit contrived or too obscure. 1a Case – hat? 20d Chalet? 7a Cantip? 25a Tutelar? It’s all been said in other blogs but at least I have learnt a couple of new words. Overall good fun so please keep it up Mr. Friday Setter

    • Posted September 23, 2009 at 4:18 pm | Permalink | Reply

      ‘Case’ is often used for something enclosing something else, isn’t it? ‘Nutcase’ is a cryptic version of hat – something encasing your nut (head)

  11. Little Dave
    Posted September 18, 2009 at 6:38 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I actually found this the easiest crossword of the week by quite a margin. A few vague answers (buttoned up) but apart from that nothing too contentious. 2* for me. I also like the picture above – the obvious one!

  12. Posted September 23, 2009 at 4:18 pm | Permalink | Reply

    ‘Case’ is often used for something enclosing something else, isn’t it? ‘Nutcase’ is a cryptic version of hat – something encasing your nut (head)

Leave a Reply, but please read the Comment Etiquette (under Comment on the menu) first. If you are asking a question, please check if it is already answered in the FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions).

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *