DT 26319 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26319 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26319 (Hints)

Big Dave’s Saturday Crossword Club

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As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, I will select a few of the better clues and provide hints for them.

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.

A full review of this puzzle will be published on Thursday, 19th August.


1a    Teacher drops alternative claim (7)
Start with a top teacher at a university and remove an alternative to get a claim

15a    Greek character held by Catherine Jones (4)
… it was her middle name before she adopted it as part of a double-barrel surname!

24a    Reported second person who, say, made call to attract attention (3-3)
Combine homophones for the second person pronoun and who to get a call made to attract attention

29a    Writing about departure in progress (7)
Combine a word meaning about with a departure to get a word meaning in progress


2d    Rouse again when a new rake is broken (8)
To rouse again is an anagram (broken) of A NEW RAKE

17d    The Spanish fish coming from fictitious place (8)
Combine the Spanish definite article with a gold-coloured fish to get a golden land imagined by the Spanish conquerors of America – the enumeration is often given as (2,6)

26d    Not having a match in clothing (4)
Drop the A (not having a) from a match to get an item of clothing

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 26319 (Hints)

  1. A very enjoyable puzzle from Cephas today. Favourite clue was 16a but there were lots to choose from today. Many thanks to Cephas and to BD for the notes.

  2. I enjoyed this puzzle too and my favourite clue was 20d but, while I have an answer for 18d, I don’t understand why I have that answer and look forward to further comments.

      1. Thank you, Libellule, and, yes, you’re right! After posting my comment, I did some investigation using Google [other search engines are available] and found the answer but, to my mind, it’s a rather tenuous association isn’t it?

        1. The first five letters of the answer come from the first part of the ***** Mitchell Cockatoo (a species found in Australia). The final three letter are a synonym for “may”.

          1. Thanks for the explanation. I got the solution but had presumed that there had been a famous (or not so famous) military man called Mitchell.

            1. I searched for the presumed military title/rank and surname in Wikipedia and it came up with the right fellow, who was an explorer of Scottish origin who named numerous places in Australia and had a few species named in his honour, including the cockatoo that bears his military rank and surname. Like you I had no clue before using Wikipedia, but was wondering why the answer was right.

  3. As has become usual with Saturday’s puzzles for me, the first pass of all the clues makes things look quite oblique but the subsequent thinking resolves into a fairly straightforward but fun puzzle. Favourite here was 10a
    Thanks to BD and Cephas.

        1. It’s a nickname from my schooldays. How do you attach the little picture to the comment Sheepdog?

          1. Do you mean the thing that looks like a mask? If so I’ve not a clue. If not I don’t know what you mean

                1. I really ought to update the FAQ! It’s been a lot easier for a few months now – you can get the avatar (called a gravatar – globally recognised avatar) at gravatar.com without acquiring a WordPress logon.

  4. The top r/h corner took me the longest. For some reason I could click with 13a – kept wanting to put in antiseptic and of course it was wrong. As you know I don’t normally like 4 letter clues bvut thought 21a was very good. I read Libellule’s message and that made 9a click in to place – thank you for that Libellule. Last one in was 6d which was really dumb as it was very strraightforward (trying to make it too complicated).

    I select 3d as my clue of the day.

    Thanks to Cephas and thanks to BD for the hints (even though I didn’t need them).

  5. Ive got 29a but I still don’t get the explanation Dave, what is the alternative word surrounding the word for leave ?

    1. If you write a word meaning ‘about ‘+ a word meaning ‘departure’, that gives you a word meaning ‘in progress’. Took me a second look as I initially tried to get it the way you are thinking.

  6. I enjoyed the puzzle immensely but one or two clues seemed to be a bit iffy.
    17d, the fish I thought ended in a
    29a I got but am still trying to suss out how.
    Apart from that, fine for a Saturday, better than the weather.
    Thanks for the hints Dave and Cephas for the crossword.

  7. Got very damp getting the paper here in Hertfordshire and I agree that 29a is a ittle vague. 3d best for me. All done watching the rain in the conservatory. The lawn is starting to recover!

    1. Sunny/cloudy here so far, we are going to try to plant out our fuschia hedge this pm, hope it stays dry :)

  8. Good morning everyone, I am stuck believe it or not on 5d I have the two checking letters, and unless I have something wrong I can only see two words that will fit there and I can’t make them fit the clue!! Help please… anyone

      1. Thanks Dave, thats what I thought it was but didn’t think of a ‘skating jump’
        Good that’s it finished, as with gnomey at first I thought oh no, but once I got into it and realised it was a pangram it was ok, one of those puzzles where I had no favourite clue and no clue I thought was awful, for us CCers requires a bit of work, but if you stick at it, you can do it :)
        Just one thing about 5d Dave I don’t quite understand why it says L(ongways) first when it comes last!!?

    1. As in qualmy/qualmier/qualmiest – uneasy/more uneasy/most uneasy? Never heard of it before but wonder if this is the logic behind it as qualmy does exist.

      1. http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/qualmy

        This says the word qualmy does exist as an adjective, which is why I wondered if qualmier would be a recognised comparative.

        Either way, I suspect that this is a word which I might only come across once, so this is its moment!!

        Hope you enjoy the opening match of the season tomorrow, Mary!

  9. Can anyone give me a hint for 3d or 10a. Unfortunately my “solutions” to both clues don’t coincide so I am left completely flumoxed!

    1. Hi Kate 3d
      you need a 4 letter word for ‘make’ followed by the initial (first) letters of ‘urgent list as explained’ to give you a word for sets of chemical symbols

      1. sorry that’s come out all wrong, you need the first letters of ‘urgent list as explained’ after a 4 letter word for ‘make’

          1. thank Dave, what do you make of the word ‘qualmier’ several online sites say it doesn’t exist??

      2. Thanks Mary, that’s what I thought, now I need to get to grips with 10a! Enjoy the match tomorrow – which team do you support?

          1. I live in Barcelona so I’ve got Europe’s best football team here, but hailing from the North East, I have to say that my heart belongs to Newcastle, although I don’t think there’s a lot of hope there. Hope your new manager does well, sad to see Rafa go.

            1. Yes but he was pretty useless, though I did like him, Barcelona, must be pretty warm then Kate?

    2. 10a is ” a and a word meaning stuffing” into M and E giving a type of decorative fringe work

  10. I think this is how a Saturday crossword should be…at first glance not very many easy answers but takes about an hour once you’ve got into it. I liked 10a best.

  11. Much more of a suitable challenge for a Saturday than many recent puzzles. My only quibble is 18a, where the answer was blindingly obvious from the checking letters, but the the justification somewhat obscure. Like the setter was being perverse just for the sake of it. Anyway, a good hour’s fun, and thanks for burning the midnight oil for us, BD.

  12. Getting there gradually. NE/SW corners and lots of gaps elsewhere. I have an obvious word for ‘got down’, 11a, but no idea what it has to do with the rest of the clue. Thanks for help with 10a and 5d!

  13. All done, but have to confess to a little help from word wizard … As usual, there are a few clues that I don’t understand even though I have the answers but all will be revealed later in the week. Lots of good clues, favourites include 10a, 19d.

    Thank you Cephas, BD et al..

      1. Mary – have a go at Prolixic’s NTSPP 027 – it is really enjoyable. Takes a bit of thinking but it’s worth it.

      2. Thanks Mary. I do enjoy the concerts, even if it is a lot of playing. There’s a need to perform there somewhere, but I’m glad it’s not me on my own!

  14. Really enjoyed the crossword today and managed to finish it in reasonable time – 10a took a long time, as did 5d. Got 3d quite quickly but couldn’t quite make sense of it to begin with.

    Mary – in answer to last night – Little Haven mainly as my parents had a house there but all up that bit of coast – Druidstone, Newgale, Solva, – such happy memories!

  15. Im still chewing over 6d and think a gun would come in handy, should be easy unless I have the checking letters wrong. Any help would be appreciated.

    1. Gaerfield – you will kick yourself when you get it – forget the gun and think of the definition of chewy stuff using the first three words.

    1. Don’t worry – it was the last one to go in for me and I really did kick myself so I know how you feel.

      1. Thanks again. I dont know about you but I found this one difficult but enjoyable. I would usually complete one corner and move on to another but I found myself all over the place. I enjoyed 9a,16a and 20d. Have a wonderful weekend Lea.

  16. Agree with Gnomethang and others. These days Cephas is presenting us with some puzzles which at first read through all seems really tricky but then the solutions fall into place without too much trouble after a couple more goes. Grateful to BD and others for the reasons why 18d and 29a are what they are – thought I was going to have to do a bit of research before writing my review but I don’t need to now, thank you.

  17. Why is it that the hints on a Saturday are usually to the answers you can get and never to the tricky ones!!

    1. Because everyone is different!

      I always do the first and last across and down clues and then pick out what I think may be difficult. Bearing in mind that at this point, usually around 12.30am, I will have finished the puzzle and be looking forward to getting some sleep, it can be difficult to preempt any difficulties – that’s why we have the comments.

  18. Sorry really didn’t like this. I thought it a rather nasty little effort. Sorry too many silly words like 12a and 5d, not a good one at all to my way of thinking.

  19. I enjoyed this one; must have been on the right wavelength today, or Elgar’s brain therapy is working!. Had a mental block with SW corner, but it suddenly fell into place.
    Quite liked 26d.

  20. I can’t have been in a CW mood today as this took me a lot of electronic help to finish, and no great sense of accomplishment afterwards, I had ‘antiseptic’ for 13a also, and it didn’t bother me at all as I had ‘toffee’ for some reason at 6d — but it all got sorted in the end. 24a was first in, followed by 12a, so I suppose they were my clues of the day. :-)

    1. I pondered over the same thing for quite a long while, Collywobbles. Then the reference to clothing and match/swan dawned on me … took a while though!

  21. Can I just repeat what Lea said earlier this afternoon, if you have time to spare following your tussle with the Prize Puzzle, have a go at today’s NTSPP No 27 – its very enjoyable.

    1. I’ll second that. It’s very entertaining. Don’t keep clear of it because you think it’ll be a tough Toughie-standard puzzle – it’s within the capabilities of anyone who can cope with the daily Crytic puzzles.

  22. I don’t like this much
    13a I have the word but cannot see why it fits the clue

    Am stuck on 25a 27a. 28a. 18d. 20d.

    1. 13a Worker still accepting one that’s dust-resistant (10)
      It’s one of the insects that is always a worker in Crosswordland and a synonym for still with the letter standing for one between the two.

      1. 25a Checked in development conjuring with a bit over (8)
        The definition is checked in development and it’s an anagram (conjuring with) of A BIT OVER.

      2. 27a Ruler performing in a month (7)
        The definition is ruler. For “performing” think of an actor taking the stage.

        1. 28a Kind of account for uncertainty (8)
          Double definition. If an organisation receives a cheque in the post with no indication of who’s sent it, they put it temporarily into this type of account.

        2. Ok I’ve done 27a but I don’t see where performing comes into it

          thankyou Gazza for helping
          me finish

          1. If you have the answer you’ll have a two-letter word inside the month. Use it to replace “performing” in a sentence like “She’s performing at 8 p.m.”.

      3. 18d Mitchell may be an islander (8)
        Double definition, but the “mitchell” bit is so obscure that I’d ignore it and look for the inhabitant of a Spanish island.

      4. 20d Adopt little telepathy on the river (7)
        You want a verb meaning adopt or embrace. Put the abbreviation for a form of telepathy in front of a North Yorkshire river.

  23. Crossword score for fun. about 2 1/2 out of 5. Not as great as yesterday I dare say. It seemed rather flat, all clues were pretty much pitched at the same level with not enough variation.

    Saturday is a prize puzzle isn’t it. What does one win if picked?

  24. Jake, you win a pen. I’ve been trying for years without success! Saturday’s challenge is always the easiest puzzle of the week too. I think the DT gets about 5,000 entries.

    Anyway I’m off to sulk as my team has just lost 6-0 at Chelskie.

    1. Little Dave, cheers for that. A pen, OK about 5000/1 That would take a bit of luck. The EV is a fountain pen, but I guess less entries are submitted.

      Cheers your self up with a beer Dave!

    2. Little Dave, from memory (and Big Dave can correct me on this), when we were talking to Cephas at the last Cruciverbalist’s Convention I think that the suggestion was that the entries run to the tens of thousands!.

  25. I have just ask this question on NTSPP (I enjoyed that immensely. Is there an accepted word for clues which use the s same letter at the s start s so the answer has to have the s same thing ?
    Just wondering) Does anybody have an answer ?

  26. Got on with the Cephas puzzle rather more quickly than with Giovanni’s so must be recovering from my long absence!

    Best clues for me were : 9a,16a, 17d, 18d & 20d.

  27. Hi all didnt get chance to do until Sunday teatime due to work commitments and playing in a skittles final last night, quite enjoyed it although 3d threw me for a while as I had it ending in an S when the penny dropped it didn’t everything fell into place, thanks for the hints BD

    1. 11d Accolade following a tenor’s virtue (9)
      The definition is virtue. After A and the abbreviation for tenor you need a synonym for accolade or testimonial.

  28. Hello big dave . Completed this thou in macrame i was initially foxed by “stuff ” as it was a verb. Thanks for your explanation of TT=Tourist trophy and DD.

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