Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26139 – Hints
Big Dave’s Saturday Crossword Club
+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +
BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ***
One of the better Saturday Prize puzzles, but with a handful of difficult answers. No pangram this week (for a change).
Don’t forget that you can give your assessment of the puzzle. Five stars if you thought it was great, one if you hated it, four, three or two if it was somewhere in between.
As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, I will select a few of the better clues and provide hints for them. A full review of this puzzle will be published on Thursday, 21st January.
1a Small quantity of liquid to hit stamping machine (4-6)
Combine a small rounded blob of liquid with a word meaning to hit with a tool used for driving nails and you have a stamping machine
11a Direct route to Alabama (6)
A word meaning direct, in the sense of direct descent from an ancestor, is a charade of a route, like the West Coast railway or a section of the London Underground, and the abbreviation for the US State of Alabama
29a Where spectators may see two batsmen scoring highly together (10)
The main definition is where spectators are when watching the two batsmen – the other definition is a rather strange way of describing what these batsmen put together if they score a lot of runs
2d From train view oddly split (4)
Remove the odd letters from the second and third words give a word meaning to split
8d Fellow supporting usefulness of one who can perform many parts (7,3)
A fellow is preceded by a word meaning usefulness to get a useful fellow – an actor who can perform many parts
26d Family accepting money from baker (4)
Take a word meaning family and insert the symbol for pounds to get a large oven for baking
The Saturday Crossword Club will open at 10.00 am (after Sounds of the Sixties on BBC Radio 2). Membership is free and open to all. Feel free to leave comments or ask questions before that time.
Please don’t put whole or partial answers in your comment, else they may be censored!
118 comments on “DT 26139 – Hints”
Nice puzzle from Cephas. 2d may be suspect though. You take the even letters of the first word and the odd letters of the third to get the answer. Favourite clue was 13d.
I think that you’re meant to treat the 2nd and 3rd words as a single entity and remove (from) the odd letters to leave the answer.
I was about to post a similar comment to that of Prolixic, but have noted your ‘explanation’ gazza. Cheers! (S)
Sorry about that! – I knew what I meant to say and have now updated the hint.
I thought that “from” was indicating selection rather than removal and did not like the construct.
You are making the explanation of the answer to fit the clue which is inaccurate.
mmmm my brother is always telling me off for doing that??!
I commented elsewhere that I felt there was something missing from this clue. Whether or not the clue is correct, the answer is not in doubt, hence the hint.
Am left with 9 across today. A(nother) clue would be much appreciated!
Ah – just got it. Daft old me.
Hi Neil – welcome to the blog.
I found the wording of 2d confusing too. Isn’t Cephas suggesting that the odd letters in the second and third words leave -a definition of ‘split’ – and the remaining even letters provide the answer? Otherwise, it was an enjoyable Saturday morning stroll.
Ignore my previous comment! The answer is undoubtedly related to ‘split’, and not as I had suggested, but the even letters in the second and third words do provide the answer…
Sorry, I didn’t like this one at all, I did not think it even deserved 2* for difficulty.
different levels for different abilities Big Boab ? some of us will find parts of this quite tricky as i myself did
I agree Mary but I have to call it as I see it, I’m no genius like Big Dave or Gazza etc., I just thought this was a bit too easy, I don’t mean to offend anyone.
9 across is driving me mad even madder
Put an O inside another word for a baby’s bed to give a bird often used as simile “as bald as a ****”.
Cheers- i thought it was that but still can’t get head round the egg bit–ta
Look at the shape of the letter O!
Sillly me eh!
Not that silly Robert
Many crossword purists would frown on this particular construct.
I wonder – will i ever achieve the greatness of becoming a crossword purist? – Sigh
Yes, finished, got stuck on 12d and believe it or not 13d, quite enjoyable but not too easy for us cc members, so don’t expect it to be too straightforward even though it is only given a two star rating for difficulty, thanks Dave, managed without hints today and actually didn’t give anything away by the way never heard of 1a and don,t really understand all of 22a, also thought 12a was an actual plant??
oh i see 22a now – mmmm
I didn’t find this particularly difficult butthere were some nice clues:
22a, 14a and 5d tickled (I always line the use of ‘low’ like this.
No problems with 2d here.
Just done it watching my son’s wind band practise and like most observers I found 2d very clumsy although I concede I may be missing something! 13d was the best of a pretty ordinary buch of clues. 2* for me.
ANY HELP WITH 28a PLEASE :-))
The first two letters are another verb that could be used to replace as, but they are used very specifically, the last two letters are another word for gold typically used in chivalry (therefore not au). Put together you have a simple word used often for a type of entrance or exit.
I read the first two letters as an adverb – the abbreviation for ditto / as before.
I suspect you are right Dave But it worked for me
thanks for that== finished now–thank goodness now I can get on with housework!!
my kind of man
Excellent puzzle for me, really enjoyed finishing this without any help. Not that straightforward but clever and FAIR clues (unlike Giovannis yesterday). Favourite clue 18a – very clever. Not too sure exactly what a drop hammer is but hey ho.
I have no idea why you would think Giovanni’s clues are UNFAIR perhaps you could try and explain your rationale… if you wish to criticise a particular setter (and you often do) perhaps you could state your reasons for it. Simple love it or hate it is not exactly constructive criticism. Many of the setters do read this blog, and intelligent feedback would always be appreciated.
Giovanni’s clues were all fair.
In my opinion in today’s puzzle:
11a is poor
29a I’ve never heard a cricket partnership described as this – not even a question mark to indicate that it is nonsense
2d is incomplete
When you get better at these puzzles you should come to appreciate that there is a greater pleasure than just finishing – it’s more a battle of wits between you and the setter
I made it hard for myself by putting 6d as trot off. Surely 26d should be potter not baker?
Think baker as in oven….. deliberate misdirection anybody?
Ah yes I see
I suppose it could be either potter or baker really?
It’s not a reference to a baker as a tradesman but to baker as something that is used for baking. Potter just wouldn’t work – see Michael’s comment below, it would need to be “potter’s oven” or something like that.
yes – see it now – thanks Dave – took me a while to understand – stupid or what
My hint was intended to lead you done that path – obviously it didn’t work for everyone.
Just substituting potter for baker would leave the clue without any direct reference to the solution, and Family accepting money for potter’s equipment would be too easy for you experts.
i’m lost here ?
Mary, the answer is something that bakes, so, cryptically, it’s a baker. It’s just like a river being something that flows, so cryptically a flower – or an anaesthetic being something that numbs, so in a cryptic crossword it can be a number.
thanks Gazza, I see it now, a bit slow!!
Nice stroll through the crossword for a wet Saturday afternoon. I liked 13d the best.
I like today’s offering – favourite clue – 5 down!
Did anybody else fill in Red Ken for 24 across! Took me 30 mins to see the error of my ways!
sorry Chris who or what is Red Ken? might come in useful for future reference
Double definition, a reference to Ken Livingstone, and a shop steward who was responsible for strikes at British Leyland? Hmm or was that Red Robbo?
Was that not Red Robbo?
Dave – I think you are right!
No, but I wish I had! A much better answer than the correct one.
But it would not be cryptic of course.
What is 13 Down?
Welcome to the blog Domus
13d Bear stuffing not replaced (10)
A Peruvian bear !! First 7 are “stuffing” and the last 3 are an anagran (replaced) of NOT
When actually is the blogs birthday Dave? must be pretty soon now
It was set up on 28th January, first post was on the 29th which is the better day to “celebrate”.
All solved by me except for
1a-now got it but wouldn’t have
2d -now got it
3d the ninth character is I but???
So three to go -and of course 10 crosses with 3& 4
3d you are correct about the ninth character put this inside another word for side e.g. if you belong to a certain political side you belong to a ***** put the 9th character inside this to get another word for equal terms
A favourite word of Sid Waddell!
Got it -but when does Sid say it?
Normally when someone is a bit behind an needs a big score to get level:
” He needs another treble twenty for ****** !”
4d A promise to pay is an I owe you, and 10 is the roman number for X. Definition – restless….
Re. 10a What happens if you let too much light onto a photograph?
Ah got them now -don’t think I would have without the hints
Red Robbo is was. From memory his surname was Robinson. I actually went to school with one of his relatives in the Midlands – or at least someone who claimed to be related to him. Funny old world. I don’t remember a Scargill being in my class though.
At last I have completed it, (having spent the morning baking, so didn’t start as early as most) apart from one clue, 25d. I have found it a very enjoyable puzzle, but, as usual, found your blog most helpful.
I quickly realised it was an anagram of shame less h but when crossing letters left me with two possibilities , I still had to look both up in an online dictionary and I think so the so called hill is actually the flat bit at the top of it.
Overall I enjoyed this one
Favourite clue was 18a – reading book of the same name at the moment!
2d – definitely not my favourite clue – a bit vague
Welcome to the blog Craig
Really enjoyed this one – can’t keep up with who the setters are but thanks. A few clues were really tricky & took a while but were satisfying once achieved. 22a, 12d and 13d amongst others. Waiting for the full explanation to fully understand some clues e.g. 17 & 18a.
17a – the clue is an indirect reference to the saying “**** one’s time”. “one’s time” follows this with “this” being the answer.
18a. You will kick yourself. Read the answer by splitting the letters in the answer 1 – 2 – 1 and groan.
Groan, groan – thanks Prolixic, I did indeed feel like kicking….. 17a a bit convoluted for me – knew the expression but didn’t get the ‘follows this’ bit – think I get it now -sort of
Can someone help me with 28A. All done except that. I’m thinking it is the thing I open to enter. But how does it come from the clue?
Explained above – a two letter abbreviation for “ditto” (as before) and a two letter word for Gold (not Au, the other one).
I had a long night last night so started late today, I thought my hangover would slow me down but was pleased to find the puzzle not over demanding.
Big Dave can you explain the relevance of the word ‘island’ in 16a
Add an “a” to the end of the answer to get the name of a Scottish island (hence the clue “one leaving and island” with “one” being the letter “a”.
Thanks for that Prolixic, I took one to me I. The clue should have been ‘small welshman is in the team’ or something like that. Never mind
I am a newcomer and only try and do the crossword on a Saturday. Think I may have finished for once but cannot get 25 down. Any hints?
Welcome to the blog Percy
25d Awful shame husband left hill (4)
You need an anagram of SHAME without the H(usband) to get a flat-topped hill with steep sides, especially in SW USA
Thanks Big Dave. As in Spanish for table?
I am a bit concerned about my answer to 19 across as do not understand the construction with the clue. Explanation?
19a Ironic to include alternative care (5)
Take a 3-letter word meaning ironic and insert an alternative to get a care or concern.
Thanks Big Dave. Knew it had to be right answer but now see how to get there.
Sorry to be a doom monger but I found today’s puzzle really quite boring and far too straightforward for a prize crossword.
I see you have a fancy new WordPress logon and blog!
If you go to My Account / Edit Profile you can set a nickname and then choose to display that publically instead of your WP logon – i.e. you could set it to “The Werm” instead of “thewerm” if that makes sense. My logon is “bigdave44” but my nickname is “Big Dave”.
Thanks Dave !
Now a cryptic crossword I can handle (sometimes ) but techno stuff …..mmm
Quite a straightforward puzzle this weekend! Thought that the even and odd aspects of 2d quite reasonable. My favourites were 18a and 28a. 24a is becoming somewhat like Ur of the Chaldees – I used to call these potboilers but now call them “thorns” after “the old”!
For 16a in order to get to the island one has to think about the causeway and the cave!
25d would please Portillo!
I liked this one, especially 13d
I agree 2d is dodgy.
I’ve not heard the expression in 8d before.
88 comments a really good Saturday blog – just shows this site is growing in popularity
… and then as soon as you add one th total goes up to 89!
On a more serious note, Gazza’s first comment today took the total on the blog since we started through the 10,000 barrier (and I’ve read every single one!).
that is brilliant, i think i’ve read quite a few myself since finding you as for todays crossword i finished it all with very little help so is it particularly easy or am i maybe improving a little, though i have never heard of 27a
I’ll explain it when I do the Hints post.
Your first two comments:
2009/06/09 at 11:36pm on DT 25950
smallsat really had us stumped – what a stupid clue as a newcomer to the telegraph crossword sometimes it just drives me crazy
2009/06/10 at 2:02pm on DT 25951
I am a learner but getting there, i think your site is brilliant but try not to look at it until i am giving up, 3 weeks ago I could only do a quarter of the crossword but now most days i can usually do 3/4 today I did all but 3, i agree it is knowing how to understand the clue that is the difficult bit
you are so clever, tahnks for that
do you know how many comments i have actually made?????
To date – 615 – over 6% of the total.
wow – i have often been told i talk too much thanks for that
Really struggling today and so am only half way there – ironically I seem to have got out the clues that gave others difficulty. Can I ask for guidance re. 27A – At present I am trying to make this into an anagram of Ex-Minister – am I on the right line?
Thank you once again for your help-
The simple answer is yes.
It’s a Latin (Low Latin according to Chambers) phrase.
i just realised that if i made another comment it would go up to 100
Thank you for your site – it is a pleasure to read the comments. In particular I enjoy the banter from you Mary – keep it up as I am sure that most of us find it entertaining and appreciate it.
thank you Lea
Hmm, any further hints for 18a please? Or actually some reasoning, as I’m pretty sure I have it but am not too happy.
Thanks in advance folks,
18a Small part of first half of alphabet (4)
If an encyclopaedia covered the first half of the alphabet, what would it say on the spine?
What is the first letter of the alphabet and what is the letter half way ? put a ‘two’ letter word in between and you have a word meaning small part, i think i may have overcomplicated that but you should get it
Ahh yes, that’s what I had and now I see it.
Thanks folks, and yes, Prolixic, I was groaning.
Finally had a chance to get to grips with yesterday’s crossword. Rather liked it although I have never heard of 1a and needed the hint.
Mary – your regular contributions make for good reading; particularly duirng the week when I do not often have time to get very far.
thank you Tony
12d, 13d,17a & 28a drove me half mad but pleased to say finally got them at this late hour..
Must have been inspired by the snooker…
Once again thanks for your brill blog it gives me hope when all seems lost.
Think Mark Selby needs the same against O’Sullivan at the moment too..
As it happens, It worked for him too……….!
Comments are closed.