DT 26307 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26307

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26307

A full review by Crypticsue

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

I enjoyed this Saturday’s offering from Cephas. It took me a little longer than usual to solve, thanks to some clever clues which took a while to work out and my trying to overcomplicate matters (see 2d below).

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1a    Conservationists after ten years in decline (8)
DECADENT – The conservationists in this instance are the National Trust. Ten years are, of course, a decade, put N T after the ten years and you get an adjective meaning declining.

5a    Comatose snake encircling shelter (6)
ASLEEP – LEE is the crossword compiler’s useful shelter and the snake is the equally popular ASP. Put LEE inside (encircling) ASP and you get a synonym for comatose.

9a    Really arrive twice! (4,4)
COME COME – To arrive is to COME and Come Come is an interjection of surprise, doubt or disapproval used as an alternative to really?!

10a    Go off track that’s badly relaid (6)
DERAIL – Badly is the anagram indicator in this clue. Rearrange RELAID and you get what happens when a train goes off the tracks.

11a    Mournful linesman’s mood? (7)
ELEGIAC – The linesman here is a poet; mournful poems are elegies and elegiac is the adjective meaning mournful. Cue everyone remembering learning Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard at school.

12a    Fully dressed American vocalist? (7)
ROBESON – If someone such as a judge, clergyman was considered to be fully dressed, they would have their “robes on”. Join these together and you get the surname of Paul Robeson, famous American singer and actor.

13a    Imparted knowledge misleadingly in the legend (11)
ENLIGHTENED – Misleadingly tells you to make an anagram of IN THE LEGEND, giving you the past participle of a verb meaning to impart knowledge or information.

16a    Commands inclusion of rows with regularity (11)
ORDERLINESS – Commands are ORDERS, rows are LINES, put lines inside commands are you get an adjective meaning regular.

21a    Supporter of temporary accommodation in the field (4,3)
TENT PEG – An easy one here. Tents and their guy ropes are held up by means of tent pegs.

22a    Go dull like small lake in the mountains (7)
TARNISH – A small mountain lake is a TARN, like in this instance means –ish (Chambers defines this as forming adjectives signifying somewhat). Add ISH to TARN and you get another way of saying go dull, usually linked to silver that needs polishing.

23a    New editorial aid in bits, missing from lounge (6)
LOITER – One of the clues that took me a while to solve. You are looking for a synonym for lounge and to achieve this you need to make an anagram of EDITORIAL with the letters of AID taken away (missing). There is probably a technical term for this type of clue but I would call it ‘cleverly complicated’!

24a    A game had finally been curtailed (8)

ABRIDGED – A charade of A BRIDGE (game) and D (finally – the last letter of had) giving you a synonym for curtailed.
25a    Spring unscrupulous person mentioned (6)
GEYSER – Chambers defines ‘geezer’ as an unscrupulous person. ‘Mentioned’ tells you to say this out loud giving you the homophone GEYSER, which is, of course, a type of spring.

26a    Transfer revolutionary energy scheme (8)
REDEPLOY – The revolutionary in this clue is a RED with E for energy and PLOY for scheme. A nice charade giving you another word for transfer (of forces, supplies or industrial workers).


1d    Label – cut it, do you hear? (6)
DOCKET – The second ‘say it out loud’ clue of the day (do you hear?). Another word for a bill, ticket or label DOCKET sounds like DOCK IT – to cut short or curtail.

2d    One living with intent, say (6)
CAMPER – I have to thank my husband here. I was trying very hard to be really clever and overcomplicated my thoughts on this clue. I read it out loud to try and focus my ideas and he immediately said “CAMPER, one living in a tent”! Just goes to prove you can over-think these things!

3d    Yielding some product, I left (7)
DUCTILE – ‘Some’ indicates the presence of a hidden word and sure enough, inside proDUCT I LEft is another word for yielding.

4d    Everybody involved in crudely menacing verbal abuse (4-7)
NAME CALLING – ALL (everybody) placed inside (involved in) an anagram (crudely) of MENACING, gives you a very good description of what verbal abuse can be.

6d    Drink perhaps Basil set out (7)
SHERBET – A drink (effervescent, fruit juice or, according to Chambers, an Australian term for beer, is found by putting HERB (perhaps Basil) inside SET.

7d    Slipping away suffering leg pains (8)
ELAPSING – A nice anagram (suffering) LEG PAINS gives you ELAPSING as time does, most enjoyably, once you get involved with cryptic crosswords and Big Dave’s blog.

8d    Friend in few lines produced rare recantation (8)
PALINODE – I bet I wasn’t the only solver today who had to look up both ‘recantation’ and ‘palinode’. The friend is PAL , then IN and then the compiler’s favourite short verse the ODE. (Recantation means to unsay what has been said and Palinode is a poem in which earlier thoughts or feelings are retracted. I like to learn a new word every day and today I have learned two.)

12d    Deplorable grief on board (11)
REGRETTABLE – A synonym for deplorable is a charade of REGRET (grief) before (on) TABLE (board).

14d    Trek short distance and strike (8)
FOOTSLOG – Another word for march, tramp or trek, is made up from a short distance FOOT and strike (as in a hard blow with disregard to direction – comments on the day made mention of the Test Match!)

15d    Pick out item going round study, condition unknown (8)
IDENTIFY – Another way of saying pick out is obtained by putting IT (item) around [going round] DEN (study), IF (condition) and Y (one of the unknowns in maths etc).

17d    Having had quite enough of consumer goods? (7)
REPLETE – Consumer goods in this case means food, and if you have had enough to eat, you are said to be replete.

18d    Diner’s order includes a fish (7)
SARDINE – Another nice anagram (order) DINERS with (includes) A gives you a small fish that isn’t perhaps quite as much eaten these days as in my childhood.

19d    Caveman in the Hebrides? (6)
FINGAL – The Hebridian Island of Staffa is home to Fingal’s Cave, made famous by Mendelssohn’s overture of the same name.

20d    Inferior not even in cast (6)
SHODDY – Another word for cast is SHY, not even is obviously ODD which you put inside SHY to get another word for inferior.

The blog seems to be have been quite food orientated lately, what with bread and butter, marmite etc. This puzzle for me was bread and butter with my slightly runny homemade strawberry jam which requires careful handling to achieve successful consumption! Let’s see what my friend Gnomethang gets to review next week – cheese on toast?!

4 comments on “DT 26307

  1. Well reviewed, Sue, and palinode was a new word to me too. The definition is most peculiar [to me] and I am wondering if there is an implication that the original poem has been published because, if not, why go to the trouble of writing another poem to retract what you’d said in the original?

    1. If you do a web search for palinode, there are some wonderful examples of them, including two about a purple cow! I do like learning new words but the trouble is most of them are so odd you never get a chance to use them again.

      1. From Wikipedia:

        “The first recorded use of a palinode is in a poem by Stesichorus in the 7th century BC. Here he retracts his earlier statement that the Trojan War was all the fault of Helen.”

  2. Thanks to Cephas for an enjoyable puzzle and to crypticsue for the hints.
    8d was the last to go in but palinode was obvious from the checking letters and the wordplay. I knew recantation but had to look up palinode to confirm meaning. I like that sort of clue where you can work out what the answer has to be without actually knowing the word – happens only rarely! As you say Crypticsue – a new word every day – even at my age!

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