DT 26185 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26185

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26185

Hints and tips by Libellule

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment **

A straight forward crossword today that should not cause many problems. Some of you will love it, some of you will dislike it. Personally I am just underwhelmed. Already looking forward to tomorrow.

If you can’t work out the answer from the hint, just highlight the space in the curly brackets.


1. Hurt someone’s feelings in cricket side, by boundary (6)
{OFFEND} – The definition is “hurt someone’s feelings” and you can find the answer by putting one side of a cricket field (the opposite of on) followed by END (boundary).

5. Advocate working on treaty (8)
{ATTORNEY} – An anagram (working) of ON TREATY is typically a word used to describe an American Lawyer.

9. Saw nothing untoward in a Tyne and Wear town (10)
{WASHINGTON} – Also the capital city of America. Another anagram (untoward) this time of SAW NOTHING.

10. Host, extremely foolish to lose face (4)
{ARMY} – Think about a group of cricket fans who follow the English cricket team when they are on tour. Remove the first letter (lose face) of the first word and you then have the second word.

11. Faithful, a Catholic clergyman (8)
{ACCURATE} – A C (Catholic) followed by a clergyman that usually assists a vicar is a synonym of faithful for eaxample as in a faithful copy.

12. Look up to one in weird dream (6)
{ADMIRE} – A word meaning to regard with pleasure or wonder is constructed by putting I (one) inside an anagram (weird) of DREAM.

13. A flighty creature up to some criminal activity (2,2)
{AT IT} – A followed by any of the small songbirds of the family Paridae.

15. Pudding poorly cooked, left by everybody ultimately (4-4)
{ROLY POLY} – A steamed dough pudding covered normally with jam is an anagram (cooked) of POORLY followed by L (left) and the last letter of (everybod)Y.

18. Difficulty encountered in stern on vessel (8)
{HARDSHIP} – Stern, as in strict or severe, and then another word for a seagoing vessel is also a privation.

19. I’m a male prayer leader (4)
{IMAM} – What can I say, nobody should need a hint for this.

21. Outbreak of rabies in part of Europe (6)
{SERBIA} – A simple anagram (outbreak) of RABIES is a republic in the Balkans.

23. A previous calculation in fathoms coaster at sea required (8)
{FORECAST} – Another word for a prediction, often associated with the weather is an abbreviation for fathom followed by an anagram of COASTER (at sea).

25. Refuse to have king included in embargo (4)
{BRAN} – This refuse is now normally eaten as a health food. Put R (Rex – king) inside another word for prohbit.

26. Showing off gift (10)
{EXHIBITION} – A double definition.

27. Protest about blackleg, a party member (8)
{DEMOCRAT} – The opposite of an American republican. DEMO (protest), C (circa – about) and RAT (blackleg).

28. Leader of gang entering ship to delay departure (6)
{LINGER} – Put the first (leader) letter of G(ang) inside a large passenger carrying ship and you have another word for tarry or loiter.


2. Boy — one’s lost a Swiss coin (5)
{FRANC} – The Swiss currency can be found by removing IS (ones) from a boys name.

3. Former partner, a stud — he could be worn out! (9)
{EXHAUSTED} – EX (former partner) followed by an anagram (could be) of A STUD HE is an adjective used to describe the feeling of being completely tired out.

4. Gloomy pub in Scottish town (6)
{DUNBAR} – A word often used to describe the colour of a horse followed by another word for pub or inn is a town in East Lothian on the south east coast of Scotland.

5. Immediately after a hotpot, had crackers (2,3,4,2,1,3)
{AT THE DROP OF A HAT} – An anagram (crackers) of AFTER A HOTPOT HAD for a phrase that can mean immediately.

6. A nettle waving about caught arm (8)
{TENTACLE} – An anagram of A NETTLE (waving) about C (caught – cricket) is the kind of arm you would find on an octopus.

7. Region supplying genuine drop of malt (5)
{REALM} – Another word for kingdom or region can be created from REAL (genuine) and the first letter (drop of?) M(alt).

8. Dream sale excited Hugo’s girl? (9)
{ESMERALDA} – An anagram (excited) of DREAM SALE is the French gypsy girl in Victor Hugo’s novel “The Hunchback of Notre Dame”.

14. Where a course at Oxford may take one, up to a point (2,1,6)
{TO A DEGREE} – A cryptic definition for a phrase that means “up to a point” is also what might happen if you started a course at Oxford university.

16. European nobleman to name an Ivy League university (9)
{PRINCETON} – One of the American “Ancient Eight”, the son of a king or queen followed by TO and N (name).

17. Bird in hot weather diving into English river (8)
{WHEATEAR} – Strange clue this, the word weather is very close to the answer and could have been used as anagram fodder, but perhaps we have had too many anagrams already. Anyway the answer to this clue is a small thrush which has a gray back, buff breast, and white rump and is constructed from HEAT (hot weather) inside (diving into) WEAR (an English river).

20. Ethnic, first in box in court case (6)
{TRIBAL} – Put the first letter of B(ox) inside another word for an examination by a court and you have a synonym for ethnic.

22. Writer about to leave house (5)
{BINGO} – Reverse the writing point of a fountain pen (about) and then GO (leave) is the game you play when you shout “house!”.

24. Pitch in Oslo, perfect (5)
{SLOPE} – Pitch in this case refers to the angle of something, and is a hidden word that can be found between Oslo and perfect.

35 comments on “DT 26185

  1. Morning libellule,thanks for explanations
    14d I didn’t like the ‘to a ‘ in this clue.I thought there was a rule about using answers within the clue.
    Other than that, a pretty average puzzle for a Thursday

  2. Yes, hi Libellule from sunny West Wales, nice to have a crossword this week that i could finish quite easily, though there are a few GK clues there, that I had to look up! good luck CC

    1. Sunny again, Mary ?? You are getting more than your fair share of it this week! Enjoy it while it’s there!

  3. Agree with your comments, Libellule; about the same as last Thursday! As you say, Friday tomorrow… hopefully Giovanni will provide something feisty!

  4. A workmanlike crossword if nothing scintillating.
    I quite liked 5d and 22d.
    I can’t spell Esme!
    Thanks for the ‘blog and thanks to the mystery setter.

  5. I thought this was a distinct improvement on last Thursday’s puzzle. Today’s crossword was straightforward if not wildly exciting. Favourite clue was 3d.

  6. I go along with the general trend, so far. Pretty unremarkable puzzle, with a couple testing clues.

    Never would have thought of bran as refuse. I found 22d the hardest clue – and the best, along with 13a, 5d & 14d.

    Libellule, with all the adverse coments this blog gets about cricket references, do you think it’s wise to use one in your hints? (10a)

    1. Vince,
      I did link through to the Wikipedia entry…. and I also thought it was quite a neat way of explaining the answer, but apologies to anybody it offends :-)

      1. I don’t know if anybody would be offended. I’m certainly not, although I’m not a cricket fan. But, then I didn’t need your hint to get the answer. I was just thinking of the strong opinions that have been expressed on the subject. Perhaps I shouldn’t have mentioned it??

  7. I’ll go along with underwhelmed, even dull. Ditto Vince re ‘bran’. Failed on 3 today: never heard of DUN as a colour, for some reason I couldn’t see DEMOCRAT until it appeared in the hint, why do I never associate ‘about’ with C ??

    Thanks for explanations Libellule.

    1. that’s one i always forget too Geoff C – about, yes it is still sunny here, warm enough to sit and read actually :)

  8. Workmanlike and ordinary it may be, but this member of the CC completed it! I don’t have a Webster’s so I am sure the answer is that it is there but bran for refuse?. Why ‘European’ in 16d? Is ‘fathoms’ f or fs?

    1. droopyh
      Chambers – Bran – the coarser part or refuse of anything
      European possibly because this is where the word originates, and is most widely used.
      Also f – fathom or fathoms

    2. I wondered why ‘European’ too; is its use intended to mislead? Think it’s ‘f’ …

      Well done on finishing it, I got close to finishing.

  9. 10a. I get the ‘Army’ bit from ‘Barmy’…. but where does ‘Host’ come into it?

  10. Yes, fairly easy today, and managed to finish without help for the third time this week!
    Didn’t equate ‘stern’ with ‘hard’ till I got the whole of the clue, and I also hadn’t heard ‘bran’ as a synonym for ‘refuse’. But I know now! @Tentacle’ was the last one to be filled in, although I realised it was an anagram very arly on.

  11. Needed hints for sw corner but other than that 4 good days on the trot. Liked 22d best but I was nowhere near getting it myself.

  12. I got stuck on quite a few – just one of those days when the brain feels sleepy and I kick myself when I see the hints/answers!

  13. Nice one today, I finished it by 9.30 over coffee. Having done todays, Mondays and Tuesday, I am still at a loss why yesterdays was such a mystery to me! Very odd. Favourite clue, 11a, made me smile :-) Had to look up a Wheatear as it seemed the obvious answer to the clue but not a bird I was familiar with.

  14. Not a very inspiring puzzle, but I loved 15a and liked 22d. I was also surprised by bran as refuse. Took ages to work out 17d and 27a.

  15. Agree with Libellule et al that this puzzle was fairly humdrum. A lot of anagrams.
    Best for me was 22d – nice to see nib instead of pen! I am thinking of the wooden stick pens that we used in elementary (primary) school to learn to write – making pothooks &c. For me this was over 80 years ago.

    Looking forward to Giovanni’s offering tomorrow.

  16. All done save 17d – I was never into feathered birds prefering the real thing. A bit cross because I had the river but for the life of me I could not arrive at the name of a songster.

    I’ll stick to the ones with the nice curves!

    2* – straightforward save that one.

  17. Started very late as usual but finished in record time with a little hiccup in the bottom left corner. Took ages to get 22d & then didn’t even realise it was nib upwards until I checked the blog. Few clues were really inspiring but I liked 15a – my nan made great ones!! :-)

  18. ok not the hardest in great scheme of this but hey……lets have confidence booster now and again!
    Fave chue? Gotta be 22d. Real goddun.
    So guess todays not to everyones taste, but I thought it good to get that swing back again…..
    And so to usual Friday dismal faare!

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