DT 26241 – Hints – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26241 – Hints

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26241 – Hints

Big Dave’s Saturday Crossword Club

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A few hints to get you started.

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.  Gnomethang’s full review of this puzzle will be published on Thursday, 22nd May.


1a    Server receives tip in exchange (9)
This server of drinks is derived by putting a tip, or extremity, inside a word meaning to exchange or swap

11a    According to notice put at risk by chance (12)
A charade of according to, or through, with a short word for a notice and a risk, or speculation, gives a word meaning by chance, or perhaps

16a    Made new impression in pool? (2-5)
… the secretarial pool

17a    Cut most of the reference lines (3)
… on a graph, typically x y and z- drop the last letter (most of) to get a word meaning to cut

29a    Soldiers protected natural revolutionary predator (9)
Put these volunteer soldiers around (protected) an anagram (revolutionary) of NATURAL to get an eight-legged predator


1d    Go off booklet at regular intervals (4)
A word meaning to go off, as in to flee, is found in the odd letters (at regular intervals) of booklet

2d    Hotel documents for auditor (4)
A posh hotel sounds like (for auditor) legal documents

5d    Well now (9)
… having previously been ill

13d    Unreal game of cards? (5,5)
Combine unreal, or sham, with a card game to get a variation of the same card game

15d    Type of PIN on the web provides means of protection (6,3)
… ignore the capitalisation!

23d    Back gnasher (5)
… a not-very-cryptic definition of a tooth at the back of the mouth

25d    Not entirely perfect notion (4)
Regular solvers will have seen this construct quite a few times – most of a word meaning perfect gives a notion or thought

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!

92 comments on “DT 26241 – Hints

  1. I thought it was a bit tricky.

    Had to look up 8d and 24d.

    I have the answer for 18a but not sure how it fits. Surely it means to kill or murder?

    1. Hi Hoddros,
      18a is another word for “knock” plus an abbreviation of “official” and the answer means “dispatch”. Dispatch can mean (in Chambers) “to kill or put to death”.

      1. Thanks Mark, I had worked out the first part but couldn’t see how dispatch meant to kill.

    1. No, Dave’s right, Yoshik. If you take the first letter ‘b’ as ‘1’, then the sequence continues with ‘3’, ‘5’ and ‘7’. Although I finished this puzzle fairly quickly, I agree with you that it’s not up to the usual Saturday standard.

      1. Caravaggio

        In the way you explain yes Dave is right, I think his explanation has a slightly open interpretation but who am I to disagree! As long as the explanations help those who need the objective is achieved and that makes me content. I see no reason for anyone to struggle today.

  2. Having reflected on the puzzle I think it fair to say it was not up to standard.

    A number of straight forward clues such as 25d and none which required any great thought save for possibly 8d, which unless you are a churchgoer may be an issue as the position is somewhat obscure.

    In my view not a challenging crossword.

  3. I thought that this was a gentler Cephas puzzle and not as good as those of recent Saturdays in terms of the clues.

  4. A fairly mundane crossword not even saved by the pangram. Never mind we can still enjoy the sunshine!

  5. Hi Dave and everyone – haven’t finished yet but I am well on with it. Thanks for the hints!

  6. Agree with Prolixic and Tilly; not terribly exciting! Did anyone else think 7d was poor?

    1. Yes, Jezza. I thought 7d lacked a smooth surface reading. A bit too obvious an anagram!

    2. It was sitting in the corner waving a big placard reading “I AM AN ANAGRAM!”

  7. Good moaning. I agree, 5d and 22a didn’t take much working out either. Never mind we have sunshine and two cup finals to enjoy this weekend. Come on the underdogs!

    1. The underdogs? You must be referring to my team Pompey! With all the luck in the world we will remain the underdogs but there will be at least 20 iof us in a bar in Limassol wishing them on. If we loose the taste will be washed away by local beer!

      1. Ah a pint of Keo then. In my childhood I lived in Akrotiri so went to Limassol on a regular basis – including school trips to the local brewery and wine producers. When I went back a couple of years ago, I hardly recognised the place though the gardens and Zoo were as tatty as ever. Curiously, I could still navigate the back route out of Limassol through the docks to get back towards Ladies Mile beach.

        1. prolixic

          Zoo is being upgraded and the gardens too. The economy is not brilliant but life is good if you want it to be.

          Keo at €1.23b for .66 litre bottled is very good so I can drown my sorrows for not too big a price.

          Akratori is not so good today due to fall of in RAF numbers but Ladies Mile still has its attractions if you get my drift!!!

  8. Well I enjoyed it. I do like a puzzle I can complete, and I did it happily through breakfast, only becoming well and truly stuck on 26a and 13d, where Clued Up had to give me a few hints.
    Now, if there were any sunshine I could go out and enjoy it, but Sunny Switzerland is cold, grey and wet.
    Have a good weekend, everyone. :-)

    1. Franny,

      I havn’t joined to CluedUp yet. How does it help with clues?

  9. Well everyone seems to have found this easy today but I have found parts of it quite tricky and am still stuck on first half of 13d, 14a, 24d & 27a though i think i know that one but can’t see why, any help anyone, then i can relax and get on with my day :)

    1. 13d: See BD’s hint above. The first word is also something you give to a baby as a pacifier.

      14a: Definition is old boy. You need the a plus abbreviations for learner and students (as an organised body) and put a word of hesitation inside (not er)

      24d. A word for shed plus a one letter word for acceptable give the name of an African people who speak Bantu

      27a. An abbreviation for second plus one of four children, perhaps, form another word for a working party.

      1. Thanks Prolixic and Gazza, have finished now, so easy when you know the answer, congrats once again Prolixic on coming second in COW, thought it was excellent clue, still stand by your bum car Gazza :)

        1. Ideal placing in the contest, I would say. Kudos for a decent clue and no hard work to follow :)

      2. Thanks for the pacifier clue – all I could think of was another card game beginning with r. Other than that, I thought this was pretty straightforward. I like an easy time on Saturday.

        1. I’m not that keen on hints that ask a question that happens to have the same answer.

          If you had hovered over or clicked on the picture above you would have seen the answer!

    2. 27a Second one of four in working party (5)
      It’s the abbreviation of Second followed by one of four children born at the same time with the same mother.

    3. Have filled in all the blanks, thanks, not sure why a few are what they are but hey ho there you go! sunshine Franny?? think we had some in April but so far this month not a lot! but as they say:
      ‘Whether the weather is warm, or whether the weather is not, we’ll weather the weather, whatever the weather, cos the weather’s the weather we’ve got!’
      sorry about that :) Not sure ‘whether’ i’ve got all the spelling right!

  10. Well apart from the NE corner I thought this was the most difficult Saturday puzzle for a long time. very tricky! Thought 16a a poor clue but 11a is very clever. Far too many religious references for comfort. Wish I could get close to12d, it’s the key answer and I can’t fathom the clue at all.

    1. For 12d, the answer is “fizzy” as in fizzy water, etc. It is made up from an element (****** based life forms) plus a word for consumed plus an abbrieviation for daughter.

      1. Ah the pennys dropped :-) I had got hung up on sparkling and effervescent and missed the the process rather than the state. Thanks, I can now progress (I hope!).

    2. Hi Prolixic, sorry to be a pest, but could you enlighten me, if you are still about. I think I have 24 down, and that the first two words are the definition. If that’s so, I can’t understand the word play.

      1. Mark, see my hint to Mary above. The final letter is a a word for socially acceptable coined I believe by Nancy Mitford in her essay on the English Aristocacy.

        1. Thanks Prolixic – sorry, I hadn’t realised you’d already answered that.

          1. And of course I hadn’t got the right answer or I would have realised what the word play was! Sorted now.

  11. Think I’m done. Is 27a what the england football team is sometimes called? Also got stuck for ages on 26a.

    Can’t say I enjoyed, or even understood, it much. Barrie, I can only find two religious references; surely that isn’t too many? Better than sporting references anyway.

    1. I quite agree. Being ignorant of sports and a reader of Trollope, I prefer churchly references. But today I saw those two and thought Barrie would be cross. :-)

    2. No, give me sporting references anytime. Could anyone explain to me what 21d has to be with an Archdeacon as I reckon the answer is deer meat? By my count 8d, 21d, 22a all have a religious context.

      1. You have the right answer. The first three letters are the title given to an Archdeacon – in the same way that a vicar is Rev.

        1. Thanks for explanation. And people wonder why I object to religious clues!! Not even sure what an Archdeacon does let alone how to address one. Please more cricketing references :-)

          1. Archdeacons are responsible for large areas of a diocese. They report directly to the bishop. One archdeacon I knew described himself as the crook at the head of the Bishop’s staff. Another bemoaned that he spent most of his time inspecting plans for building toilets!

            Effectively you have Bishop > Archdeacon > Rural Deans (even in cities!) > Parishes

      2. Barrie

        If you don’t already have a copy, you could do a lot worse than to buy a copy of Chambers XWD – £4.79 from Amazon:

        1. By the way, not only does the site no longer hold your details but it seems to take ages and lots of page refreshs for ones comments to appear, any idea why?

          1. I have no idea, and was assured it had been fixed. Will resubmit the fault report.

            If you get a WordPress logon (see the FAQ) and stay logged in, it should be OK.

  12. This is the first crossword I’ve found time to look at for several weeks … hence my absence from the site.

    Whilst not wishing to be over critical, it was at most 1 star enjoyment for me.

    A few decent clues but not many, and how poor is 7d?? … the surface reading is slipshod, and possibly rates as one of the poorest I’ve ever encountered.

      1. Hi mary, it’s good to “see” you.

        I’ve been busy preparing for a few days break towards the end of next week, so crosswords have taken a backseat recently.

        As a full time carer I have to arrange replacement care when leaving home, and it’s fingers crossed now that my sister’s flight from Edinburgh to the South of England to “takeover” from me, will not be affected by that damn volcano!! lol (S) :smile:

        1. Hope it all works out for you, i’m sure you deserve it, i too am escaping next weekend for 10 days, hope the weather improves :)

  13. What a week I have had. Preparing to head off to the south of France and my pc blew up so I have spent the last few days getting my new one going.
    Found getting back in the swing a bit of a trial. Enjoyed today as a good work out with new words for me.
    8d and 11a
    Setter must be an old college prof I imagine.

    1. Panic over.
      Looks like the problem with keeping the name and email address has not been resolved yet.

      1. No we are all still having to enter our details each time Nubian, a right pain if you forget and have to do it all over again, as I often do :( Have a great time in France hope you find some sunshine

      2. It’s particularly annoying as I received an email from WordPress saying they had fixed the problem. Will have to complain again.

  14. Hi – First time on the blog!

    Completed with the exception of 8d which I just can’t get for the life of me! Can anyone help?


    1. Welcome to the blog Tigger

      8d Clergyman appears before a railway goes round corner (10)
      This clergyman is built up from a prefix meaning before, A and the abbreviation for RailwaY, with a type of corner in the middle.

      1. Thanks Dave! Have got it now, although it is not a word I was familiar with. You learn something new every day!

  15. I found this more tricky than last week but far less enjoyable – it didn’t seem to hang together in the same way.
    I don’t think we need to see 25d again!
    Still a few nice clues though, 2d and 28a.
    Thanks to Cephas.

  16. Finished & would agree that it was fairly easy with some weak clues notably 18a, 7d & 28a in my opinion.
    So now I’ve no puzzle to do I have the prospect of moving a ton of gravel from the drive to the back garden to look forward to.
    So no Keo or its equivalent for me just yet.
    Deep joy!

    1. No puzzle to do? There is a freshly baked, hot and steaming NTSPP waiting to be devoured!

      1. Spindrift, the Not The Saturday Prize Puzzle was established for just this emergency.
        Simply hit the emergency Break Glass and enjoy.

  17. Well here I am, it’s 6.15 and I am still struggling to finish this ‘easy’ puzzle. 13d, 15d and 26a are still mysteries!! Any help to relieve the frustration would be appreciated.

    1. 26a Out with Latin, I challenged, it’s to do with teaching (9)
      It’s an adjective that means related to teaching, and it’s an anagram (challenged) of OUT LATIN I.

    2. 15d Type of PIN on the web provides means of protection (6,3)
      It’s a means of protecting high-fliers in a circus, say. Put a type of pin, which is designed to prevent you pricking yourself, in front of a synonym for the (world wide) web.

    3. 13d, Unreal game of cards (5,5)
      The second word is a card game for 4 players. Put a word meaning substitute (unreal) in front to make a variety which can be played with only three players.

  18. If anyone is interested, Mary might be, I’ve been with my welsh choir today to play/sing at the very welsh wedding of Sam Ricketts and a very swish do it was too. I gather he plays for Hull Utd and was an international of some sort with Swansea, if I’ve got that right, don’t really do football.

    1. Where was it Geoff, did you sing any Welsh songs?? have heard of him but i couldn’t have said where :) though i am an avid follower of football

      1. At Lambourn, in the Valley of the Racehorse, Mary. I stand corrected by my neighbour, he plays for Hull City now, but did play for Wales once upon a time. Yes, lovely welsh songs, including Deus Salutis, Llanfair, Men of Harlech, Calon Lan and they recessed to Land of my Fathers.

  19. Evening folks. This was trickier than a usual Saturday one in my book – I thought 12d was quite clever but otherwise not too bad and enjoyable. I once held a 29a at a children’s birthday party – it was the ultimate in peer pressure. I have photographic evidence! It was fine until it started to move.

    All done and ready to post.

  20. Finished this one around preparations for son-in-laws 30th party – quite enjoyable, I like Churchy references (much better for me than sport!). Am sure I’m being a complete numbskull but can you help with 3d – just not seeing it :-(

    1. 3d Pleased inside to have bird from the Orient (7).
      Put the middle (inside) three letters of pleased in front of a type of seabird to make a word meaning from the Orient.

  21. Claire – take central portion of first word and add a four letter bird to describe someone from the China/Japan etc

    1. Thanks Gazza and LD – so simple when you know! Didn’t think of the ‘central portion’ bit & had 11a wrong at the beginning. Oh well – we had a good party last night anyway!

  22. We’re having trouble getting on to CluedUp tonight – anyone else?
    Also am having the same problem as everyone else in having to sign in every time I make a comment.
    Enjoyed this puzzle today and have done it in dribs and drabs throughout the day in between gardening. Good weekend to all! (Oh, nice to watch Tilsit!!)

  23. Quickly-solved puzzle from Cephas. Not hard this week.
    Best clue for me is 22a.
    Had a few days off from crosswords – preparing to go down to the Var in a month’s time – hopefully to warmer weather than we are having on this side of the North Sea.

  24. Didn’t start this until 9pm and have still a few to do. At that time of night, I was glad to have some easy clues to get me started. Any hints for 11a and 12d would be welcome!

  25. Managed to finish after coming back to it this morning, but needed plenty of help.

    Some rather contrived clues and 7d is the worst.

    Best clue 18a.

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