DT 26060 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26060

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26060

Hints and tips by Libellule

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

A comme ci comme ca crossword today, that has its moments. But after the fun I had doing yesterdays Toughie its hard to get excited by this one. The answers are hidden in the blank space between the curly brackets, just highlight it to read them directly. As usual feel free to leave comments.


1. What’s needed to leave a ship quietly berthed in Rio? (8)
{PASSPORT} – Rio is a PORT, now place A SS (ship) and P (quietly) inside (berthed) for a document that allows you to leave or enter a country.

9. Survey at cross purposes? (4,4)
{EXIT POLL} – The survey referred to in this clue, is the sort of survey that takes place after you have voted.

10. Leave almost unfinished (4)
{QUIT} – Remove (unfinished) the E from QUIT(e) (almost) and you have another word for leave.

11. Telling niece off for her acumen? (12)
{INTELLIGENCE} – An anagram (off) of TELLING and NIECE is another word that could be used to describe quickness, accuracy, and keenness of judgment or insight.

13. Displays travel costs for supporters (8)
{FANFARES} – If you break this clue up and have travel costs (FARES) for supporters (FANS) then logically the answer would be FANSFARES, however I don’t think it works like that. You need to think about “travel costs for supporters” as a whole, as you would for example use the words busfares or trainfares. Comments?

15. Disinclined to declare since losing heart (6)
{AVERSE} – If you are opposed to something, then you might also be AVER (declare) and then remove inc (losing heart) from S(inc)E.

16. Notice containing something to do with hearing (4)
{OTIC} – Hidden in (containing) NOTICE is a medical word meaning of or relating to the ear.

17. Fellow reportedly rebelled and stopped moving (5)
{FROZE} – F (fellow) and ROZE, sounds like (reportedly) ROSE (rebelled) for word to mean to become motionless or immobile.

18. Troubles created by skimming invoices (4)
{ILLS} – Remove the first letter (skimming) of (b)ILLS (invoices) for ailments, misfortunes etc.

20. For example, love is beginning to magnify thoughts of self-promotion (6)
{EGOISM} – EG (exempli gratia – Latin, for example), O (love) IS and the first letter (beginning) of M(agnify) is a word used to describe concern for one’s own interests and welfare.

21. Unwilling to put time in for good walking (8)
{TRUDGING} – Unwilling is GRUDGING, now swop G for T (put time in for good) and you have a synonym for walking heavily or wearily. Just seeing the answer to this reminds me of the Morrisey classic, Every day is like Sunday, which in turn always reminds me of Skegness.

23. Doing time, debtor gets a bit of a sub (7-5)
{CONNING-TOWER} – CONNING (doing, or more accurately swindling) then add T (time) and OWER (debtor) for “the raised structure on the hull of a submarine, acting as a bridge when the submarine is on the surface”, or alternatively, a bit of a sub.

26. The call of a screech owl (4)
{ECHO} – Another hidden word, is (scr)ECH O(wl) a call?

27. Disciplinarian in term at school (8)
{MARTINET} – An anagram (school) of IN TERM AT, is another term for a disciplinarian.

28. Suitable primate to cover one in job (8)
{APPOSITE} – Put I (one) in POST (job) and then place this inside (cover) APE (primate) is another word for apt or suitable.


2. A bread roll and crackers before time – that’s ample (8)
{ABUNDANT} – The definition is “that’s ample”, so take A BUN (bread roll) plus and anagram (crackers) of AND before T (time) to find the answer.

3. Redress, to fanatics, is breaking out (12)
{SATISFACTION} – An anagram (breaking out) of TO FANATICS IS is the kind of redress you might find if you asked for a duel.

4. The world of Shakespeare is pale pink (6)
{OYSTER} – A phrase from the “Merry Wives of Windsor” also describes one of the colours (according to Chambers) of a bivalve mollusc.

5. Nick dropped head, getting duck (4)
{TEAL} – To nick something is to (s)TEAL, if you drop the first letter, the S, you end have a short-necked freshwater duck, especially of the genus Anas.

6. A couple of notes on attendance being moderate (8)
{MITIGATE} – The third note of the scale in sol-fa notation – MI, followed by the seventh note -TI, plus another word for attendance – GATE describes a word that can mean to mollify or appease.

7. Book for American gents? (4)
{JOHN} – The 4th gospel in the new testament or another word for an American lavatory.

8. ? (8)
{CLUELESS} – If you haven’t seen this before I would be surprised. But if on the other hand you don’t have a clue then highlight the space between the curly brackets for the answer.

12. Black tie designs never ordered? (7-5)
{EVENING-DRESS} – An anagram (ordered) of DESIGNS NEVER is another word for formal wear or “Black tie”.

14. Photograph new branch (5)
{SHOOT} – Double definition of to take a photograph, especially for movies and new growth on a tree or bush for example.

16. Strongly affected, remove drunk keeping company (8)
{OVERCOME} – An anagram (drunk) of REMOVE around CO (company) is a word sometimes used when somebody is very emotionally affected.

17. Okay about Turner Prize nominee being girly (8)
{FEMININE} – The Turner Prize nominee you are looking for is Tracey EMIN, place this inside FINE (okay) to get a word that describes the female sex or nature .

19. Paparazzi’s risky venture (4,4)
{LONG SHOT} – A cryptic definition of what a photographer who specializes in spying on or harassing famous people in order to obtain photographs of them in unguarded moments might try, or a gamble with a remote chance of success.

22. Remove packaging from a French shawl (6)
{UNWRAP} – A in French is UN and another word for a shawl is WRAP.

24. Grass is a source of irritation (4)
{NARK} – Double definition, an informer or an annoying, unpleasant or baffling circumstance.

25. Rubbish article is so long (2-2)
{TA-TA} – TAT (rubbish) and A (an article), produces another phrase used for goodbye.

51 comments on “DT 26060

  1. Maybe slightly harder than the previous days’ crosswords, but this one left me feeling underwhelmed. There were a few loose clues. Was 26a HOWL or ECHO. Was 10a PART(LY) or QUIT(E). Pale Pink for the colour of an oyster is a new one on me – but each puzzle is a learning experience. I was not fussed about 13a – thought it was one of the better clues along with 7d and 21a.

    1. Prolixic,
      Your comment re. 26a is interesting, I missed that, probably because I had checking letters when I turned up the answer. But yes HOWL would be a much more logical answer to put in on a first run through of the clues… I wonder if the misdirection is deliberate?

      1. Possible a misdirection, but isn’t the essence of a good clue that you should be able to arrive at the right answer without the need for checking letters in the grid?

        1. Prolixic,
          I am not disagreeing with you :-) In fact I think your comment is 100% spot on, whether the misdirection is intentional or not, this is still a loose/bad clue….

  2. An average crossword and no more.

    It seems that the pattern of old is changing. As the week went by so the crosswords increased in difficulty. Now it seems they ease off.

    Disliked 4d as much as dislike those mollusca. Just like swallowing one’s phlegm.

  3. 27a anew word for me
    28a my favourite today, I am fed up with filling in conning tower, I’ve done it so many times.
    In 7d the book reference is a bit OT(T) if you’ll pardon the pun. It didn’t really need it.

  4. An average crossword, neither too easy nor too difficult. I agree with Proloxic re 10a and 26a; particularly 26a.

    A bit disapponted with the clue to 19d. As the answer is in the singular, then it must relate to one press photographer, which is a “paparazzo” – “paparazz1” being the plural.

  5. Once I got going finished it quite quickly. My clue of the day is 8d – liked that. New word for me was 21a.

    Re 26a I didn’t even hesitate as had done 12d straight away so there was no other choice. Good point though – it could have been either.

  6. As I’m unable to highlight was the answer to 8d sleepers? To my mind the crosswords have got progressively harder of late as I used to complete it 3 or 4 times a week whereas now it’s once if I’m lucky. C Gulls.

    1. Hi Michael and welcome to the blog.

      You say you can’t highlight the answers on the review – what sort of computer are you using, i.e. does it have a mouse?
      The answer to 8d is CLUELESS.

      1. Michael is probably on his mobile, as am I.
        You can’t highlight text.

        Quite liked this but fell down on 8d and 9a.
        Liked 23a.

      2. I have amended the blog to give a hint for 8d. I just thought everybody would have seen this hoary old chestnut before.

      3. Still don’t get “clueless” and can’t highlight the “bit” in brackets. Thought right click might work, but it didn’t. Mind you as to my computer skills………………………………………………….I should have said thanks for the welcome by the way.

        1. Michael
          1. Position your cursor just to the right of the left-hand bracket
          2. Press down on your mouse’s left-hand button and keep it depressed
          3. Move your mouse to the right (still keeping the left-hand button depressed) until your cursor reaches the right-hand bracket.
          4. The hidden text should by now have been revealed.

  7. Liked this version version of 8d, but is the question mark necessary, as with it the answer could be question?. Loved 23a

  8. I have just finished the Toughie – found it easier than the daily. That means that all you clever ones will find it not as worthwhile as normal. I enjoyed it – and was pleased to get it without any help. My favourite clue was 1a.

  9. I agree that this puzzle wasn’t particularly challenging, although I liked 21a. Is it my imagination or are those clues where letters from one word are dropped and replaced with another to arrive at the solution a relatively new device?

    As for the Toughie, I usually complete perhaps one in four puzzles. Today’s took me seventeen minutes to finish. Disappointing!

      1. I don’t think its a new device – beheadments, curtailments, and internal deletions have been around as far as I can remember – but if anybody else has any comments I would appreciate it.

    1. Replacements are on my list of additions to the next edition of my Crossword Guide.

      Where it gets to be fun is where several letters are replaced, as when you get UNIT => UNHURT, by replacing I with HUR, in a recent Toughie (T 232)

  10. Could not get going at all today – did nobody else struggle? I thought this was the hardest one this week by a long way!

      1. Many thanks -got most of them (well all but 11!) – I found this easier than todays crossword. Where are you Mary? I normally find the ones you find difficult, difficult and your easy ones easy? Please don’t tell me you sailed through today’s crossword.

        1. Me too!!!, i found todays very tricky. started late but that is no excuse. I will try todays toughie tomorrow. so may need a bit of sympathy.

  11. I’d never seen clueless before. I got about half the answers out . Failed on 1,9,10,15,16,27 a & 2,4,5 ,6,7,8 . Tough one for me.

    Disliked 4d intensely -if you don’t know Shakespeare (and having been forced to do “As you like it ” for O level,which I found seriously awful, I have never had any further interest in the man) then you are stuck.

    1. Surely you had heard the expression “the world’s mine oyster” or some variation even if you did not know it came from Shakespeare?

  12. My husband and I have only been doing cryptics for about 2 months and generally need clues to finish but this time we managed it all!! Although we got the answers I’m not happy with gate meaning attendance and where does the ‘cross purposes’ bit in 9a fit?? Am I being too pedantic?? By the way thanks for hosting such a great site – and for being such a friendly bunch!

    1. Hi Claire and welcome to the blog.
      Sorry for the delay in getting your comment published – all first posts have to be moderated. From now on your comments should appear straight away.
      Gate is attendance at a sports match, e.g. the gate was 12,000
      Cross-purposes is a cryptic reference to the fact that you use an X (cross) to record a vote at an election.
      It’s good to have you on board.

  13. As a full time carer, there are few days that I’m able to devote more than about 15-20 uninterrupted minutes to crosswords, and it’s not usually until late evening that I’m in the clear. This often means that puzzles have to be visited several times before completion.

    As a consequence I seldom contribute to the blog, but I usually make time to read it through, and it’s interesting to read comments made by others, which often but not always, mirror views of my own.

    I thought the anag in 11d read well, liked 7d, but was slightly thrown by the notes in 6d as I’ve always seen them as “Me” and “Te” :smile:

    1. Sarumite,
      Re. notes, generally you are correct
      Chambers has this:
      Mi – also anglicized in spelling as me
      Ti – also te

      1. Thanks Libellule, Whilst I often refer to Chambers, in this instance my preconceived ideas of the correct spelling held me back for a short while!

  14. I really liked this puzzle. Most of the clues were fairy straightforward but there were a handful of quite tricky ones to keep the solver intererested.

    I solved the whole puzzle without help except for 7d. I was kicking myself when I read what the answer was. What threw me is that the term “john” isn’t only used for American gents (Loos) – it is a term I have heard used here in Australia and I understand it is also used in England.

    Apart from the fairly easy Wednesday puzzle I found all the other puzzles this week tougher than usual. On Tuesday I failed to finish a RayT puzzle for the first time (only got 19 out of 30).

    Did anyone else find this week’s puzzles trickier than previous weeks?

  15. Mixed feelings about today’s crossword. I (Marian) found it difficult, but little sis (Joanne) did rather better! Thanks for the explanations, as always…

  16. Always thought the scale notes were me and te, no wonder I was having trouble with 6d, everything else was reasonably straightforward, altrhough for some reason this puzzle took much longer to complete. Thanks for the musical scale lesson!

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