DT 26280 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

DT 26280

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26280

Hints and tips by Big Dave

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

We have one of Jay’s easier offerings today. At one point I thought I might enter all the answers in clue order, but that came unstuck on the bottom half where I needed a few checking letters to get some of the longer answers.

Leave a comment telling us what you thought. You can also add your assessment by selecting from one to five stars at the bottom of the post.


1a    Pays for time sick, resulting in deadlock (10)
{STANDSTILL} – pays for the drinks in 27a! – add T(ime) and a word meaning sick to get this deadlock

6a    Worker given cards (4)
{HAND} – this double definition shouldn’t be a problem for old 6 acrosses!

9a    Places where people look to clean suit? (5,5)
{STRIP CLUBS} – these places where people look at ladies in various states of undress are a charade of to clean and a suit of playing cards

10a    The jumper from a fairy’s back? (4)
{FLEA} – a jumping insect comes from A and a fairy, all reversed

12a    Delighted journalist after rejecting story (6)
{ELATED} – a synonym for delighted is built up from Crosswordland’s favourite journalist after a story reversed (rejecting)

13a    Ceasefire caught out unhappy supporter (4,4)
{TRUE BLUE} – take a word meaning a ceasefire, remove the C (Caught out) and all a word meaning unhappy to get a person unswervingly faithful to a political party represented by the colour in the answer

15a    Could it be left after calling on wit? (8,4)
{VISITING CARD} – a cryptic definition of an item left by someone who has called at the house or office

18a    What a forger does suspect, if centre’s out (12)
{COUNTERFEITS} – what a forger does is an anagram (suspect) of IF CENTRE’S OUT

21a    Servant on fiddle gets power (8)
{DOMINION} – an underling of a powerful person comes after a word meaning to fiddle to get power or authority

22a    Guess date and single source of grapes (6)
{DIVINE} – a word meaning to guess is a charade of D(ate) I (single) and the plant that is the source of grapes

24a    Created dynamic environment for whirlwind (4)
{EDDY} – hidden inside (environment) the first two words is a whirlwind

25a    One’s accepted by diverse tweeters if shrewd (10)
{STREETWISE} – put I’S (one’s) inside an anagram (diverse) of TWEETERS to get a word meaning shrewd that could be used by said tweeters

26a    Surge that’s bound to be heard (4)
{TIDE} – a surge that sounds like (heard) a word meaning bound or fastened

27a    Bush drinks — take no notice! (5,5)
{SCRUB ROUND} –land covered with bushes or low trees and drinks bought for the entire group combine to give this phrase meaning to take no notice


1d           Stay outside and stop scheme of work (6)
{SYSTEM} – combine the outside letters of StaY with a word meaning to stop to get an operating procedure (scheme of work)

2d           A minor route out of the country (6)
{ABROAD} – split this as (1,1-4) and it could be a minor route, but it actually means out of the country

3d           Expressing disapproval about one losing value (12)
{DEPRECIATING} – put a word meaning expressing disapproval around I (one) to get a synonym for losing value – could have been quite difficult except there aren’t that many long words that mean losing value!

4d           Ring for the price of crossing (4)
{TOLL} – ring the bells, for the curfew maybe, or pay to cross the river – either way it’s the same word

5d           Seducers rebel in its being set free (10)
{LIBERTINES} – these seducers are obtained from an anagram (being set free) of REBEL IN ITS

7d           Signal for everybody to make a net profit (3-5)
{ALL-CLEAR} – this signal that that danger is over is a charade of everybody and a word that is used to describe a net profit (one that is ***** of all deductions)

8d           Terribly saddened by situations offering no progress (4,4)
{DEAD ENDS} – an anagram (terribly) of SADDENED gives situations offering no progress

11d         Sportsman who might wait for the audience to boost energy and run (12)
{WEIGHTLIFTER} – a sportsman who is a charade of a word that sounds like (for the audience) wait, a word meaning to boost the spirits, E(nergy) and R(un)

14d         Begin to bubble in enthusiasm on unusual topic of light carriers (5-5)
{FIBRE-OPTIC} – put B (begin to Bubble) inside a word meaning enthusiasm and follow it with an anagram (unusual) of TOPIC to get this cable used to transmit light signals

16d         A police cricket match trial that’s crucial (4,4)
{ACID TEST} – A and a department of the police are followed by an international cricket match to get a crucial trial – this was originally a test used to identify gold

17d         Reveal journalist supporting defence ministry to be obsolete (8)
{OUTMODED} – A charade of a word meaning to make public any facts that someone does not wish to be revealed is followed by that ubiquitous journalist under (supporting – as it’s a down clue) the Ministry Of Defence results in a synonym for obsolete

19d         Fifty per cent of military suppress European Union setting (6)
{MILIEU} – start with MILI(tary) and follow it with the European Union to get a word used in English for setting or environment which is adopted from the French for middle – discuss!

20d         Mostly skilful goal from champion (6)
{DEFEND} – combine most of a word meaning skilful with a goal or objective to get a word meaning to champion

23d         Workers initially undercharged for fare (4)
{MENU} – combine these workers with the first letter (initially) of Undercharged to get a bill of fare

No complaints from me today – unlike on Monday the foreign word was clued so that you could work out the answer.

49 comments on “DT 26280

  1. Surprised to see this given a 2 star rating, I thought it was really tricky, taken me ages to get down to the last two clues. Needed lots of help with this one. Still stuck on 14d and 7d (all *****)Fav clue – 2d very clever. Worst clue – 1d too complicated by half for me!

    1. Probably done it by now!

      14d is a type of fancy lamp. Last word is an anagram of topic. first word is an word for ‘a load of wood burning’ around the start of the word bubble.

      7d is a signal heard in the war when all the bombs had stopped and everyone could come out of the air raid shelters!

  2. I say! – the DTs getting a bit racy, what with ***** mags on Saturday and those sort of places in 9a. Something must be done! (Like an informative picture illustration).
    Nice and easy from Jay today – favourites were 15a, 1d. I wasn’t aware of the phrase at 27a but I am now.
    Thanks to Jay and to BD for the review.

  3. Hooray, finished it without the blog but with plenty of help as usual from my little machine & Chambers : ) however fairly pleased with myself cos I thought it was quite tough, once again in 21a, where it says ‘servant on fiddle’ shouldn’t this be a down clue, does it really work here? fav clues, 2d, 4d, 23d, 18a, 25a, have u finished now Barrie? Good morning , sorry afternoon, time flys when you’re enjoying yourself!, Dave and thanks for blog, just going to read through now

    1. Finished the last 3 clues after a days golfing competition (I came second!). I think you have done well because despite what Dave says this is def not 2 star at least for the CC, its more 3 or parts of it 4 star. Still after a difficult start it mostly came together and I even got the foreign word 19d without any help, amazing. It’ll never happen again :-)

  4. Took a while to get going but then rattled through it. Lots where you had to read the clue very carefully eg 1d and 13a.

  5. Many thanks to Jay for the workout this morning. All the downs went in easily enought but went down a blind alley with 12 across try to make an anagram of ceasefire without the c until I reaslised the error of my ways! Favourite clues were 8d and 15a.

  6. Surpised to see the answer to 19d used in the ‘genre’ this week after the the good discussion a Lundi.
    Good crozzy to day .
    18a seemed like a general knowledge and cryptic together for good measure.
    27a brought back Royal Navy memories as we used to do a lot of it.
    21a was my favourite.
    Thanks for the blog BD

    1. My first thought on completing 19d was “someone’s going to comment”!!!!

        1. Just as an addendum, 19d was perfectly acceptable as the clue included the help to determine the answer, which has been point my point all along, not the use of the word.

            1. I think I said more than enough on it yesterday Dave, I was expecting a reprimand.

    2. Nubian. What with 27a, 26a, 21a, 20d, 7d, 2d, (and 9a!!) I wonder if Jay is ex-RN, as are you and I, apparently?

          1. Can’t think what his nom de plume would have been in the Royal Navy then. My Christian name was hidden by a manly George, being a Geordie. He could have been Jezzer, I love a mystery.

    1. Nope! – I didn’t attempt to justify it short of seeing END and ‘Champion’ and then wrote it straight in! – Oops!
      I’m having an ‘Off’ day what with his and the Toughie…..

      1. Could it be because you are excited at the thought of returning home tomorrow.

    2. Gazza,
      I considered it, but after scratching my head for a couple of minutes I decided to see if I could come upwith a more “fitting” solution to the clue.

    3. Pretty straightforward aside from 20 down as I kept changing my mind! I put defend in at first then changed it to legend as in a champion, e.g: Pele, Gordon Banks (the less said about the execrable display on Sunday the better) then scrubbed it out as I couldn’t see the word play. Then defend again then rubbed out and vacillated between the two.. Obvious now of course DEF(t) END hey ho. Favourite clues 2d, 9a,14d and 19d which I thought was well thought out and indicated.

    4. Yes – I did! In fact I wrote it in having decided that it had to be yet another sporty clue that I just didn’t understand!

          1. That’s good Lea I think : ) I think it actually stands for ‘Approved Code Of Practice in Health & Safety

  7. If Libellule is online, I have commented on your reply yesterday.

    Libellule, if you type ‘hebdo’ into chambers you this ‘

    No exact matches for hebdo, but the following may be helpful.

    hebdomadal adj weekly. hebdomadally adverb.
    ETYMOLOGY: 18c: from Greek hebdomas week.

    and from that you may determine that the French use it, as I did.

    But as I explained above, use of the word was not the problem.
    This could go on for days.

  8. I thought this was a no-go at first, but little by little I got 23 completed, needing the hints for 5 of those. That left me 5 words I just couldn’t see for looking!

    Thanks for puzzle and review. 13/15/25a probably tops for me.

    (My dad was RN, one of the last commanders of HMS Belfast.)

    1. Salute him for me will you Geoff. That ship has got real guns, not the peashooters they use today, I can smell the cordite.

  9. Thought that this was going to get more than 2* for difficulty. Oh dear – ANOTHER off day! I ended up with one (11d) that I just couldn’t do – having read the hints it wasn’t even difficult – and another one (20d) that was wrong. Several took me a very long time to see – the first part of 9a, 13a (like Prolixic was trying to make it an anagram of “ceasefire” without the “c”) 1d, 3d, the second bit of 7d and 14d. Definitely not a good day! didn’t have any trouble with any of the ones that have a possible connection with the RN – my Dad was RN in WW2.

  10. Another day in London but this time I enjoyed the crossword. Hadn’t heard the phrase for 27a before (not Navy!!!) but it made sense. My favourite was 14a.

    Gazza – I started off with legend for 20d but changed it on my way home. I got stuck for a while on 9a as I had night for the first word and it wasn’t until I did 1d that I changed it.

    Thanks Jay for a good xwd and Dave for an excellent review.

    I liked Mary’s 16d first word!!!!

  11. Setter here – just passing through, as I usually am out all day Wednesday. Many thanks for all comments and to BD for the review. No Navy connection here, sorry to say

  12. Just finished this (been watching tennis). Found it really good, and some new expressions eg 27a.

    Many thanks to setter and reviewer.

  13. A jumping insect comes from A and a fairy, all reversed. Flea. Eh? Since when exactly have an Elf and a Fairy been the same thing? Hurrumph!

  14. The moment i filled in 19d i thought that this will get Nubian’s goat…sorry, couldn’t resist that one. Like Gnomethang, i think these compilers are getting saucy. Not only did we get the ? mags and today’s 9a but there was a corker of a word in a toughie last week…concupiscence. I challenge anyone to drop that one into a conversation.
    It must be the heat.
    Good contest today-3 stars for difficulty and 4 for enjoyment.
    One quibble-10a is surely grammatically wrong.as the fairy’s alternative name begins with a vowel shouldn’t the indefinitive article be ‘an’ or i am being a pedant? Ok -i think i know the answer to that.

  15. I thought it was tricky.

    Only complaints are 10a for reason stated above, and 20d which I still do not understand.

    1. Peter,
      20d is DEF(t) (most of deft) + END (aim or goal) to give a verb meaning to champion.

  16. Very easy – more suited to a provincial evening paper methinks. I found the Codeword more of a challenge!
    On to the Toughie!

Comments are closed.