DT 26087 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26087

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26087

Hints and tips by Rishi

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

Today Rishi joins us as a guest blogger and he hopes to be with us most Mondays.  He will be familiar to followers of Derek Harrison’s Crossword Centre Forum (see the link in the sidebar) and he has also contributed to Fifteensquared.  I’m sure you will all welcome him and appreciate looking at today’s puzzle from a different perspective.  BD

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I have pleasure in blogging (from Madras that is Chennai, India) on our Monday Maestro’s crossword.

I am familiar with Rufus’s clueing technique from regularly solving his  syndicated puzzle that appears in a local paper. I have solved DT crosswords in paperback collections but without knowing the authorship of the puzzles.

I have seen the DT crossword reproduced in a lesser-known upcountry paper but I don’t know if it still appears in it.

The answers below are hidden so that you don’t see them  until you want to. Select the white space inside the curly brackets beneath the clue and the answer will unfold itself.

If  you disagree with any interpretation of mine, there is the Comments section where you can have your say.

1a Feeling love in little ways (6)
{PATHOS} ­– Container/Content – O (love) in PATHS (“little ways”, that is, small streets). “Feeling” seems to be an inadequate definition, as ‘pathos’ is actually a feeling that arouses pity or sadness.

4a Said to be celebrated (8)
{OBSERVED}  – Double definition – “said” / “celebrated” (v. in past tense).

9a How one danced when not quite sober (6)
{REELED} – Cryptic and Double Definition – “Reel” is a kind of dance and so the answer (danced); when a person is drunk (“not sober”) one might well have … (in the sense of staggered).

10a The principle of no credit (8)
{DOCTRINE} – Anagrammatizing ‘no credit’ gives the answer (“principle”) but there is no anagram indicator (AInd); so one might be pardoned if one were initially thinking of ‘cash down’ or ‘spot cash’ and so on as possible answers.

12a Mild expletive used to replace an unprintable one (4)
{DASH} – Double definition – It’s a euphemism for any feisty swear word; the mark ­­__ is used in printing to exclude the expletive so that readers are not offended (or they may think of worse expletives if they so wish!).

13a Nominally involved in a court case (5)
{CITED} – Cryptic definition – When a person is this, he or she is named or summoned to appear in court.

14a Country putting physical education before sport (4)
{PERU} – Charade – Putting PE (physical education) before RU (Rugby Union, a ‘sport’) gives a country.

17a Far better than other door-to-door salesmen? (7,5)
{STREETS AHEAD} – Cryptic definition – When a person is this, he or she outstrips everyone else and such a salesman (or saleswoman, for that matter) would be literally this. I bet such persons are those who explore every avenue!

20a Agitatedly anticipate bill coming in will cripple one (12)
{INCAPACITATE} – Inserting AC (bill) in INCAPITATE (anagram of ‘anticipate’) gives a word meaning ‘cripple’ (v.).

23a Just nothing left in New York (4)
{ONLY} – Charade or stringing together of components – O (nothing), L (left) in NY (New York)  – Made up completely of abbreviations.

24a Hunts – with seeming success (5)
{MEETS} – Cryptic double definition – A word that means “Hunts” (n.). The word also means “fits” (which is probably suggested by “with seeming success”).  If you look at this differently, please put a word in Comments.

25a An image I’d behold in retrospect (4)
{IDOL} – Charade – Taking ID (I’d) and adding OL (by reversing LO (behold) gives ‘image’, ‘in retrospect’ (literally ‘looking behind’) being the reversal ind.

28a Dispose of in haste (8)
{DISPATCH} – Double definition – The answer word means “Dispose of” (send, kill) and also “haste”.

29a He’s far out once more (6)
{AFRESH} – Anagram of “He’s far” giving a word that means “once more”, “out’ being the AInd.

30a A roué in a bad mood gets the bird (8)
{PARAKEET} – Container/content – A RAKE (roué or a dissolute person) in PET (in the sense of ‘the sulks’ or bad mood) gets the bird.


31a Haphazard arrangement of right and order (6)
{RANDOM} – Charade – Stringing together R, AND (obtained for free) and OM (the British honour, the Order of Merit) gives a word meaning ‘haphazard’.


1d Sad pair, having erred, originally evicted here (8)
{PARADISE}  – Charade of an anagram of the words “sad pair” plus E (being the original, or first letter, of “erring”)  – Allusive of the pair Adam and Eve, being evicted from a desirable place.

2d Wealth of much loved person (8)
{TREASURE} – Double definition – “wealth”/”much loved person”.

3d Outstanding poem that’s recited (4)
{OWED} –  homophone or sound alike – “Outstanding” gives the answer-word, which means “yet to be paid”. This sounds similar to a word that means “poem” (Keats wrote one to a Nightingale).

5d Manoeuvring of the bankers or philanderers may produce them (6,6)
{BROKEN HEARTS} – Anagram of “the bankers or” gives the answer-phrase, which philanderers, as they take one woman and abandon her for another, may leave in their wake. This is a  well-concealed anagram, despite the AInd ‘manoeuvring’; if one took ‘of the bankers’ to anagram, one would go astray).

6d Dines in style at smart restaurants (4)
{EATS} – Hidden or Telescopic – some letters in the words ‘style at smart’ yield the answer word. Surface reading is smooth but the word ‘restaurants’ is redundant in wordplay.

7d Such a threat is hardly barefaced (6)
{VEILED} – Cryptic definition – A threat is “hardly barefaced” in the sense that it is covered in a veil.

8d Stopped and prepared a plan (4,2)
{DREW UP} –  Double definition – “Stopped”/”prepared a plan” – Not a very satisfactory DD

11d Service providing overhead savings for those in deep water (3,3,6)
{AIR SEA RESCUE} – Cryptic definition

15d Female cotton spinner (5)
{JENNY} –   Double definition – A woman’s name/ “a machine for for spinning with more than one spindle at a time” (COD)

16d Sailor turned to crime, is seen in the dock (5)
{BASIN} – Charade – Put together BA (AB, able-bodied sailor) and A word meaning crime to get  a word that means “dock”

18d Scores a goal, gaining England’s final point (5,3)
{LANDS END} – Charade – Combination of a word that means “Scores” and another that means “goal”  gives us “England’s final point”

19d A shy male sort of dog (8)
{SEALYHAM} – Anagrammatizing “A shy male” we get the answer word which is a breed of dog, “sort of” being the AInd


21d Support by arms or threaten by them (4,2)
{HOLD UP} – Double definition – “Support by arms”, “arms” in the sense of body parts / “threaten” with “arms” in the sense of weapons

22d A cloister is more confined without it (6)
{CLOSER} – Deletion – When we remove “it’ from “cloister” we get a word that means “more confined”

26d Fire an employee for drinking, perhaps (4)
{SACK} – Cryptic double definition – A word that means “Fire” (v. to dismiss) and a word  that means “[something] for drinking”

27d A bad start for one King of Mercia (4)
{OFFA} – Charade – Take ‘a’ and give it ‘bad start’, that is, put before it a word that means ‘bad’ and you get the name of a King of Mercia. Or perhaps this could be interpreted as: Take a word that means “bad” and another that means “one” and you get…


PS: At one stage I had these to go: Ac 4, 10, 13 and 24 and Dn 3,5,6,8,15 and 26 but these fell one by one. The very last ones to go in were 3d, 15d and 26d – all in the same column.  These came to me as I took my eyes off the grid and was writing this blog.

51 comments on “DT 26087

  1. Welcome to the blog Rishi and thanks for your comments.

    This was another wonderful Monday morning treat for Rufus and more than made up for the fact that my trains were completely up the spout this morning (and likely will be for the next few days thanks to a bridge no longer having foundations or something similar).

    There were lots of smiles and excellent clues today. Favourites were 1a, 12a, 17a, 30a, 1d, 7d, 11d and by a long margin 5d. The number of favourites indicates the quality of the puzzle. I noticed the lack of an anagram indicator in 10a – possibly why it was the last I solved (it was only that the interecting letters matched the letters in the clue that hinted it might be an anagram). I minor point for me was that 1d might have better read “evicted from here”, but this did not overly spoil the clue.

    1. Bradford’s agrees with you Ranger, but I can’t recall seeing this in a normal daily cryptic before and my initial reaction was the same as Rishi.

      1. Glad to know it is actually an indicate. I got the answer quite quickly but used the definition of principle as the deciding factor and thought that “of” was the anagram indicator for the no credit. (Probably luck).

  2. Welcome to the blog Rishi, coinciding with another top-notch Monday puzzle.
    I made a number of notes when solving it, some of which agree with comments made by yourself and others.
    24a I actually had BEATS which as a verb relates to hunts (particularly game birds) and of course fits the second part of the clue, but I stand corrected in that MEETS is the better solution.
    10a I also failed to realise an anagram indicator.
    Favourite clues 1d, 5d and also 22d for it’s simplicity and surface reading.

  3. Found this difficult many thanks for the clues as I couldn’t complete it today. My interpretation (for what its worth!) of 24a, is the answer as a plural noun matches the word “hunts” (as you say above) but the “success” comes because you have met up with what you were hunting – ie “seeming success”.

  4. One of the definitions in Chambers for “meet” is: “to be suitable to or satisfy, eg a demand or requirement”, I took this to be the other definition.

  5. I also found this pretty hard, couldn’t really get going. Can anyone explain how SACK in 26d is related to drinking, I haven’t come across that before. Had no idea PET from 30a could mean bad mood either. Always good to pick up new things though.

    1. Chambers gives as one definition for Sack … (noun) old name of various dry white wines from Spain and The Canaries, but there is possibly a more direct link to the clue that I’m missing?

  6. Welcome Rishi and thank you for your excellent hints.

    My brain wasn’t working as quickly today – possibly because I did yesterday’s 2510 just before starting this one. Even so, I enjiyed it and liked 30a and 31a as my clues.

  7. Thanks, Rishi, for your comments, and welcome! Needed your help on 13a and 24a as, although we got the answers we didn’t know why…. I don’t like these short words with only vowels for checking letters!!!! Grrrrrrrrrrrrrr! Also, wasn’t keen on 26d. Enough moaning – we loved it really!

    1. Normally I would agree with you regarding the short words but at least today they made sense and I didn’t struggle with the.

  8. I didn’t enjoy this at all. Can’t agree with Prolixic’s “Monday morning treat”. I thought there were a number of poor clues, particularly 10a and 1d. Just goes to show that you can’t please everybody.

  9. I first came across “sack” in the sense of “wine” decades ago when I read Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part I.
    Years ago I would have had to rise from my chair and go to my bookshelf but now, with Internet, it’s so easy to get a quote.
    For example, the Prince tells Falstaff: “Prince. Thou art so fat-witted with drinking of old sack, and unbuttoning thee after supper, and sleeping upon benches after noon, that thou hast forgotten to demand that truly which thou wouldest truly know. What a devil hast thou to do with the time of the day, unless hours were cups of sack, and minutes
    capons, and clocks the tongues of bawds, and dials the signs of leaping houses, and the blessed sun himself a fair hot wench in flame-coloured taffeta, I see no reason why thou shouldst be so superfluous to demand the time of the day.”
    Sorry, it’s long quote that I chose but then it brings out the essential character of F.

  10. I had also had “beats” for 24a and couldn’t work out why it was 30a though knew it must be. Lost patience with 3d and wish I hadn’t now.

    Not a bad start to the week though. 1a and 1d my favourites though agree with the suggested amendment above.

  11. Welcome and thanks for the great review.
    Found this one tough but almost got there in the end – I carelessly put on 8d in the present tense so failed on 10a. Should have spotted the error!.
    1d and 5d were favourites

  12. Great start to the week, good all round cryptic with too many good clues to list them all, welcome to Rishi, great review.

  13. Welcome Rishi, took me ages to fill in 17a and 5d, then I was left with 3d which i didn’t get, though I think it is clever, quite a tough one for us ‘clueless club’ today :)

  14. Thought this was a great crossword which I finished without help, but did get slowed down by a few mostly in the top right corner. Also on line I had ‘rou’ not roue??

    1. Lizwhiz

      I meant to mention earlier that CluedUp online seems to drop all accented letters, with some strange results. The pdf version was unaffected.

      1. Dave,
        Don’t you mean the printable version? We get pdf’s for the Giant GK and Herculis, but everything else is just an “html” print out, and yes the print version is fine, I just checked the one I printed this morning. I always print it off, and then key it in later when I have finished it.

  15. Pride comes before a fall!! Having completed back-to-back crosswords (Saturday and Sunday) I was getting a bit cocky. However I got ‘beats’ for 24a and needed hints for 13a and 16d. Two vowels only in a 5 letter word is a little harsh. ‘Pet’ for bad mood is a new one on me.

      1. Thanks for reproducing the extract from Hugh’s article. In fact, as I solved the relevant clue without much of a difficulty, I was wondering where I had met this “pet” word, though not exactly a “pet”!

        I didn’t remember the source as I read so many things at so many places every day!

      2. People surely haven’t forgotten already a clue from last Friday’s puzzle?
        Pet embraced by senior set (7)

    1. New to me too.

      I think it is a regional thing. The missus thinks it is a perfectly ordinary word that everybody knows (she is from Essex), while I have never come across it in speech or writing except in crosswords (I am from South Wales).

  16. While enjoyable on the whole, there were too many loose bits todays – once I get an answer I like to be able to see that it is right.

    Like sarumite I found BEATS for 24a.

    Then there’s DISPATCH or DESPATCH for 28a

    VEILED or BARBED for 7d

    LAID UP or DREW UP for 8d.

    Altogether too much for one crossword. Mind you, if the whole houseful of us weren’t down with the flu, which makes us all grouchy, I would probably not have noticed.

  17. Found this rather vague in places otherwise some nicely crafted clues. A bit of a mixed bag.

  18. Welcome Rishi! Other than your name and India, I wondered if there was a special significance in the ‘answers’ in your avatar.

          1. Thanks, again. Amazing how world-wide this blog has become. Could you have envisaged this at the start of the year?

            1. The simple answer is “No”.

              When we started to get 1,000 hits a day we all thought it was fantastic, now we usually get 3,000 – 4,000 a day, which represents well in excess of 1,000 visitors. As you can see from the sidebar widgets, they are spread all round the English-speaking globe and beyond.

              1. It feels like a very inclusive club – everyone is accepted, irrespective of skill level or experience. And it says something when the setters are prepared to join in. Back tomorrow!

                1. As the avatar is square here, I had a new one made.

                  As you have noticed, in the 5x I first put in RISHI. Then INDIA. Then SOLVE. Now the crossings took over. I put in REFIT, FILED, THETA to complete the square.

                  Only the first few are significant and the rest are just fills.

                  Thanks to everybody for the welcome.

              2. And looking at SiteMeter the hits are growing month-by-month. Do CluedUp or the Telegraph link to the site? I would have thought it would bring more people into solving crosswords.

                1. Not at the moment Will, But a number of the setters follow the comments with interest as they are getting feedback that they have never had before.

                  1. Phil McNeill (I hope I have the spelling correct), the crossword editor for the Daily Telegraph, also looks in and makes an occassional comment – usually where there have been problems or errors with the crossword or Clued Up.

  19. I also had beats for 24a – when I lived in Scotland I was once a beater!!

    I get sick of clues based on the word THE (le,la ,les; il; el ;der,die das; but has anyone ever used “The Dutch” in the neuter sense?

    The best clue I remember is from the late 1940s “City of silent ice” – not far south of where I was born!

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