DT 26071 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26071

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26071

Double D Maths

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

A preponderance of Word Sums and Double Definition clues today with the odd anagram thrown in.  A few of the clues were old chestnuts to me, but if you haven’t sen them before, they will probably raise a chuckle with you.  It was probably a 2 ½ for difficulty rather than three, really. But I am sure a few of you will feel that three is appropriate.

Sorry for being a bit late, but clandestine meetings with Distrcit Nurses have been the order of the day!


1a Spirit shown by brother Andrew (6)
{BRANDY}   Nice simple word-sum to get going today.  BR (Brother) + ANDY (Andrew) = a drink associated with Parsons in poetry.

4a Awfully noble about getting us all together (2,4)
{EN BLOC}  A slightly more complicated word sum.  An anagram (shown by awfully) of NOBLE + C (circa. / about)  gives a French phrase meaning all together.

8a A bishop’s pamphlet is hard to understand (8)
{ABSTRACT}  Yet another dose of word maths.  A B’S (a Bishop’s) + TRACT  (Pamphlet) = a word meaning hard to understand.

10a Assess greatness at a higher level (4,2)
{SIZE UP}  Two definitions here:  to assess the greatness of something and if something is one level higher it’s a …..

11a Shrewd chief (4)
{ARCH} Another double definition, one as old as the hills.

12a Specious allegation may bring about stress after start of proceedings (10)
{PRETENSION} P (the start of Proceedings) + RE (about) + TENSION (stress) give a highly unlikely allegation.

13a Go faster than posse and get free (4,2,3,3)
{STEP ON THE GAS)  An anagram (indicated by free of  THAN POSSE GET leads to a four-word phrase, more associated with America for getting a move on.

16a Essentially, a bulletin broadcast about man making a comeback (2,3,3,4)
{IN ALL BUT NAME}  An anagram of A BULLETIN around the reversal of MAN to give a four-word phrase that means essentially.

20a Following a visit to the theatre one may be convulsed with laughter (2,8)
{IN STITCHES}  A double cryptic definition.  Break the clue into two after the word be and you have you two definitions.  It may help to know that the theatre is one in a hospital.

21a Examine odd person in suit (4)
{CASE}  A triple definition.  Examine, as in a burglar  looking at an intended target.  An odd person can be described as being this.  A (law) suit could also be described as this.

22a Count, more insensitive? (6)
{NUMBER}  Another hoary old chestnut.  Another double definition.  To count, and if you are more insensitive you may be deemed this, but watch for the question mark as the word doesn’t really exist in this particular form.  It’s a cryptic definition.

23a Actor, one overacting in Lincs town (8)
{GRANTHAM}  Think of the surname of the actor whose real name is Archibald Leach and personified suaveness, then think of a name for an old luvvie type actor who goes over the top.  Listeners to Wake Up To Wogan, sadly soon to finish, will know of Chuffer Dandridge, who may be said to be one of these.   For those not familiar with Chuffer, his website is an absolute joy.  You can meet his chums  Wilton Shagpile, Dickie “Touch” Tingles and Tosser Strangeways, amongst others.


24a Told stories about backing German songs (6)
{LIEDER}  More Word Maths   LIED (told stories) + RE (about, again!) reversed.

ARVE Error: need id and provider

25a Call on somebody in break-times? (4,2)
{STOP BY}  And yet more – a combination of STOP (break) and BY (times, as in 2 by 3 = 2 x 3)

Back with the downs in a wee while ……..

……. here they are


1d Baseball star’s two girls (4,4)
{BABE RUTH}  You need two words associated with “girl” – one a term of endearment and the other a girl’s name.  Some think it clever, but I’m not in that camp.  I can’t see “girl” as an adequate definition of “Babe”.  Ruth, yes.  Too clever for its own good.

2d I may appear straight after this character (5)
{AITCH}  This is quite clever, but I have seen it before.  The whole clue is a cryptic definition.  The letter I comes after which letter of the alphabet.  Again, some will love it, others won’t.

3d Notice old man in study, poker-faced (7)
{DEADPAN}  AD (Notice) + PA (old man) inside DEN (study)/  This gives you a word meaning po-faced like Buster Keaton.

ARVE Error: need id and provider

5d Gets gen about savings (4,3)
{NEST EGG}  An anagram (indicated by about) of GETS GEN reveals what you have put away for a rainy day.

6d Slow-moving girl bringing tray (4,5)
{LAZY SUSAN}  Slow-moving (LAZY) + girl (SUSAN) gives a piece of furniture.   Rather a lot of girl’s names today which will get under the fingernails of a few people.

7d Initially, come round over voucher (6)
{COUPON}  Another word sum.  C (initially, come) + O (round) + UPON (over) gives a word meaning voucher.

9d All the way, rock band on about hot disc (3,5,3)
{THE WHOLE HOG} All the way is the definition   THE WHO is the rockband, although ELO is reversed in there!  But as for the remainder I am buffaloed.
[The only sense I can make of it is THE WHO (rock band) with EG (for example / on ???) LEG (on side in cricket, thanks Gazza) around (about) H(ot) and O (disc).  BD]

ARVE Error: need id and provider

14d King gets in pinball machine – worth putting in the paper? (9)
{PRINTABLE}  R (King) inside  PINTABLE (pinball machine) gives a word meaning can be printed.

15d Envoy with young woman during New Year? (8)
{EMISSARY}  MISS (young woman) inside an anagram (indicated by New) of YEAR gives the name of the diplomat.

17d Goddess attending feast, Artemis (7)
{ASTARTE}  Not one I have heard of and the last clue I solved ages after everything else.  A hidden answer, not well indicated, if you ask me “feast, Artemis”

18d Sup bubbly and bitter with social climber (7)
{UPSTART}  An anagram (bubbly) of SUP + TART (bitter)

19d Girl and boy brought round university yearbook (6)
{ANNUAL}  ANN + AL (girl and boy) with U for university inside.   More names…..

21d Deeply distressed, snubbed at college (3,2)
{CUT UP}  CUT (snubbed) + UP (at university or college) giving a phrase meaning very upset.

As I say enjoyable enough, but a bit heavy on the Word Sums and Double Definition clues, plus a few too many names as well.  But there have been much much worse, which brings me to my review of last Saturday’s puzzle which will be with you tomorrow, as will my views on the Toughie.  Till then, toodle-oo!

The answers for those who can’t wait!

DT 26071 - Answers
DT 26071 - Answers

33 comments on “DT 26071

  1. This was a pleasant crossword. It was nice to have a grid that allowed longer answers – only two four letter words today.

    1. Do these compilers know that there are sports other than cricket??? Only a cricket freak could possibly know that LEG means ON!!!!

  2. I found this quite enjoyable – bit late getting to it as was in London for lunch. Didn’t know why 9d was what it was – other than The Who – thanks for the explanation.

    My first answer was 1d – good old American clue!!! The first “girl” is not one that is appreciated by many females – naughty setter..

  3. Thought rather tricky – could not finish it without your help – Tilsit – Thankyou. Liked some clues- 9d, 13a, 6d. Thought some a bit obscure/convoluted – 25a, 7d, 14d, 21a. On the whole just about ok!

  4. Vince – I thought it was you (or somebody like you) that said this last week! Dont worry I am a cricket freak and I missed it – got the answer and only knew how when Tilsit said!!

  5. Better than yesterdays horror but still a poor effort. 9d is senseless and 13a is a horrible americanism, something that should be banned from all crosswords. On a good note, I did like 1a and 9a. Hope you are feeling better Dave.

  6. BTW Tilsit will be out all evening – he is assessing the officials at the FA Tesco Women’s Premier League game between Doncaster Rovers Belles and Nottingham Forest. My offer to go along and assess the players was turned down (by Mrs BD).

    1. Blimey! Them nurses work hard between shifts!. Did they lure him down with a bag of oranges and a magic sponge?

      (With apologies to all hardworking non-stereotyped nurses, female football players and, just posssibly, Tilsit. ;) )

  7. Another power cut left me doing this when I got home from work – brain must have sizzled but as soon as I read your clue for 16a I breezed through the rest – many thanks

  8. I enjoyed today’s puzzle, and did it in two goes. There were rather a lot of Americanisms and two foreign words, which might not please everyone. I worked out 9d with no idea how or why and thought the clue for 18a obscure. For 23a I thought of Hugh rather than Cary, and I liked 20a.

    1. From where I know the German word for Song:


  9. Got it in bursts. I saw the answer to 9d then had to consult the site to see why – too many little bits to pull together.

    1. Had the same problem there, Will.
      I left the answer out for some time although I knew it was correct.
      Better to be safe than sorry!

  10. I’m surprised no-one has said they like 2d – it took me a while but when it clicked it felt really good!

    Also I must say it is interesting to know that 22a is not a real comparative.

    Finally last thing to say is that we’ve had a few cultural references this week – The Who, Oasis, etc, how do you decide what’s well known enough and what isn’t?

    Here’s a clue I wrote – can anyone get it?

    I’d back crooked sleaze czar for spitter (6,6)

    It’s like ghetto crucial verbal-ism, ya get me?

    1. Re 22a: number is a valid comparative – I think what Tilsit had in mind was “number” being used as a synonym for “anaesthetic”.

    2. Is Mr Paxman’s rascal defined by as a ‘spitter’? Or am I not down wit da homies?. If so then Nice Clue!.

      Bad ‘Czar-size’ deal for the rapper.

      1. He sings about unknown ladies craze.
        OK – How can I delete the one that I put in the wrong thread?

          1. The very use of the expression ‘down wit da homies’ instantly means you’re not.

            Mans is bringing bare dryness, you get me.

            Explain the Paxman thing? That’s thrown me.

            1. I suspected that I was not!.

              Dizzee Rascal appeared on Newsnight and was interviewed by Jeremy Paxman who referred to him as “Mr Rascal”. – Made me laugh!

              1. Ah I see. And yes, in today’s parlance, to spit = to rap, as in : Yeah man, dat bwoy spit mad lyric.

                I think I might be single-handedly destroying the good name of this entire website.

                Sorry Big Dave and friends! :)

  11. I disagree slightly about the analysis of 10a. The definition is just “Assess”, the wordplay is SIZE (greatness) + UP (at a higher level).

      1. Agreed – I didn’t read this analysis but read the clue exactly as Bobs did when I filled it in.

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