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DT 26376

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26376

Hints and tips by Crypticsue

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

Like Gazza yesterday, I wasn’t sure I enjoyed this much while I was solving it, particularly as I had quite a struggle with some clues, but having typed the review, I find it has grown on me. Thanks to Jay for a good Wednesday morning brain workout.

Please 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    Sources of food for worried debtors? Yes! (6,4)
{OYSTER BEDS} – An anagram (worried) of DEBTORS YES should produce somewhere that a well-known bivalve mollusc is cultivated.

6a    Charges and escapes without bail, ultimately (4)
{FEES} – a synonym for charges – an alternative word for escapes with L removed (without baiL ultimately).

9a    Hour regularly ignored by depressed holy man (5)
{SADHU} – This Hindu holy man is formed by a three-letter word meaning depressed followed by the odd letters of HOUR (regularly ignored tells you to take away the even letters).

10a    Stuck after heavy fall in winter (9)
{SNOWBOUND} – if you are shut in after a heavy fall of that winter white stuff from the sky, you would be this.

12a    Groups who might seek out political organisations (6,7)
{SEARCH PARTIES} – Another word for seek followed by the plural word for a group held together by a political aim – these groups would look for you if you were lost.

14a    Looked across the road, annoyed (8)
{PESTERED} – Insert one of crosswordland’s abbreviations for road inside a synonym for looked to get another way of saying annoyed constantly.

15a    Profession requiring caution and hesitation (6)
{CAREER} – Another word for a job or occupation is a simple charade of another word for caution plus that useful abbreviation for hesitation – ER.

17a    The colour I get, trapped by refusal (6)
{INDIGO} – A violet blue dye – I followed by an old slang expression meaning ‘get’ as in understand, inserted into that two letter word for refusal much used by toddlers in a tantrum.

19a    Stretch a leg and note changes (8)
{ELONGATE} – An anagram (changes)of A LEG and NOTE produces a verb meaning to lengthen by stretching.

21a    Plausible lout deserving to get thrashed (6-7)
{SILVER-TONGUED} – One of the last to go in for me – I have a piece of paper with various combinations of the letters of LOUT DESERVING (to get thrashed is the anagram indicator) but eventually, with the help of the checking letters, found the adjective meaning persuasive or eloquent.

24a    Reported bids finally ended, with key changes, for ancient fortification (5,4)
{OFFA’S DYKE} – A homophone for bids, the last letter (finally) of endeD with an anagram of KEY – the ancient fortification is the linear earthwork following the border of England and Wales.

25a    Newspaper robbery? (5)
{THEFT} – A very nice clue – a synonym for robbery is a charade of the definite article followed by the two letter abbreviation for the ‘pink’ paper concerned with monetary matters

26a    Register sick following onset of temperature (4)
{TILL} – these registers are usually full of cash – the first letter (onset) of Temperature with a synonym for sick.

27a    Drink given to judge meets requirements (8,2)
{MEASURES UP} – Judge here means to assess the standard or size of something, follow this by a three letter word meaning to drink in small quantity and your solution should meet the setter’s requirements!


1d    Ring road around a house in Kent? (4)
{OAST} – Put O (ring) and the abbreviation for road we had earlier in 14a around A. These Kentish houses are used to dry hops.

2d    Sits unfortunately by miserable perverts (7)
{SADISTS} – an adjective meaning miserable and an anagram of SITS (unfortunately) – these perverts delight in inflicting pain.

3d    Shot at university? (8,5)
{EDUCATED GUESS} – A cryptic definition of a shot or go at estimating that could have been made by someone at university

4d    Split tender includes religious group with energy (8)
{BISECTED} – Split as in divided in half – a synonym for tender with inserted into it a type of religious group whose views differ from the mainstream plus E for energy.

5d    Doctor gets no work in slump (5)
{DROOP} – a very obvious charade here – the abbreviation for doctor, O (no / zero) and the much used abbreviation for work – slump as in sag or hang loosely.

7d    Difficult to get hold of levies managed to cover university (7)
{ELUSIVE} – an anagram of LEVIES (managed) with U inserted (cover) – the Scarlet Pimpernel was famed for being this.

8d    A way team’s deal is reported (4,6)
{SIDE STREET} – a minor road (way) – a sporting match usually has two of these – follow this with a homophone of a word meaning deal.

11d    Would one look for a cheap timepiece? (7,6)
{BARGAIN HUNTER} – A cryptic definition of someone who could be looking to obtain a particular type of watch with a hinged metal cover at a low price.

13d    The rewards of victory left on board for one who won’t enjoy them (10)
{SPOILSPORT} – Someone who detracts from the fun of others – possessions taken by force by a winning army followed by the nautical term for the left hand side of a ship.

16d    Vilifies topless people from Ibiza (8)
{SLANDERS} – Ibiza is one of these, so people who live there are …. Take away the first letter (topless) to get part of the verb meaning to vilify with malicious words or statements.

18d    Miserable payment from the state – and flu is rampant! (7)
{DOLEFUL} – a synonym for miserable or mournful – the colloquial expression for unemployment benefit followed by an anagram (rampant) of FLU.

20d    Handle a day shift? (7)
{ADDRESS} – Handle here is the slang expression for a person’s name or title or the call sign of a CB radio user (I am probably opening a whole new can of worms here but are there still such people?) – A D (day) and a word meaning a smock or loose garment.

22d    Something from the herb garden for your setter (5)
{THYME} – An old way of saying belonging to you followed by Jay’s personal pronoun – a useful herb.

23d    Paddy’s got no right to check (4)
{STOP} – Teenagers often get into this sort of paddy. Take away the R (no Right) to get a way of checking progress or advancement.

After time for review and reflection, I found that I like quite a few of the clues today, but my favourite, mainly because it’s so simple but effective and made me smile is 25a. I am now going back to the relatively calmer waters of Saturday Prize Puzzles but I do hope to be available for a couple of Wednesday reviews in December, if BD will let me!

82 comments on “DT 26376

  1. I thought this was a wonderful puzzle although not so tough – I was probably on the wavelength. Many very good clues – 3d, 25a but my favourites where 11d and 13d for the great surface reading.
    Thanks to crypticsue and Jay for the puzzle.

  2. Oh dear, I am finding this tough today, however not going to look at blog yet, of the clues I have managed to do 11d my favourite so far, don’t like 10a, can’t find bound as a synonym for ‘stuck’?

      1. Thanks Libelulle, but I can’t see that is the same as stuck, I have looked in both my Chambers crosswrord dictionary and the big red book but can’t find anywhere it says stuck!

        1. STICK v

          1 THRUST, poke, stab, jab, push, pierce, prick, penetrate, insert, puncture, spear, impale, transfix
          2 GLUE, gum, paste, cement, bond, fuse, weld, solder, tape, adhere, grip, cling, hold, attach, affix, fasten, secure, fix, pin, tack, join, bind

          Mary, “bind” is last in the list #2 in Chambers Online – hence “Stuck” = “Bound”

          1. OK I guess I’ll have to give in then Franco! I didn’t try Chambers on line, but I still don’t like it, oh dear I feel very argumentative today, so I’ll just say thanks Franco for taking the trouble to explain :)

            1. I really struggled with this. I think bound = stuck is “pushing” it. Favorie 17a.
              Still don’t understand 23d – must be getting denser in my dotage.

              1. Try looking at it reverse – put the R back into the answer and you get a word meaning a temper tantrum.

                    1. Get it now – as in stroppy. I was focused on strop as used, I think, in sharpening a razor.
                      Many thanks

              2. Another way to look at it is – if you are stuck in the winter in a country that has lots of “heavy” weather you will be snowbound

              3. Hi Chris a ‘Paddy’ is another word for a ‘strop’ if you are having a Paddy you are having a strop, if you take the ‘r’ for ‘right’ out of strop you get stop

          1. OK I give in :) thanks Libelulle, is it sunny in your part of France today? Its not to bad here so I think I’ll pop down to the beach to clear my head!

  3. Actually finished without resorting to blog, a very rare occurence. Struggled with 21a for a bit as trying to work out an anagram for plausible lout doh!!Thanks to crypticsue and Jay for the puzzle.

  4. I agree with the 3* rating.

    Really struggled with the anagram in 21A to such an extent that I was sure that I had got some of the checking letters wrong – but got it in the end – new meaning of “Plausible” for me.

    Favourites: 3D, 25A and 11D. Thanks to Crypticsue and Jay.

    PS. Today’s Toughie seems to be alot tougher than tough!

  5. Well, after hoovering and picking the last of the tomatos, I have managed to finish it! needed books etc for about a quarter of it, a tough one for the CC today, if it hadn’t been for that lovely crossword from Rufus on the 11th, I would still be firmly in my place in the CC! As Sue says once you have finished it you can aprreciaite some of the clues, there are a few I don’t understand so I’m off to read the blog now, thanks in advance Sue :) fav clues 11d, 25a, 18d, didn’t like 10a, 20d

        1. You should try being me – I had to solve the puzzle, write the review and then people keep asking me to work when I would rather be responding to comments! The Toughie today is very splendid but takes a lot of lateral thinking and so on; the sun is shining too! I really must win that lottery and give up work so that I can concentrate on cryptics full time :)

          1. I think if I were you Sue, I would never get any work done nor the review, I think you do brilliantly and it is nice to have a woman on board :) , I haven’t won the lottery but work from home, so my time is my own really as long as everything gets done!

        1. ok, thanks Sue, I give in on that one then :( still not happy with ‘bound’ for ‘stuck’ in 10a but I’m in that kind of mood today, I think I need to get out for some fresh air!

          1. Mary, think of ‘bound’ as ‘in bondage to’ or ‘stuck in’ as in ‘housebound’. I found ‘snowbound’ in my dictionary, so it’s not that fanciful a word. Enjoy the fresh air. :-)

            1. Hi Franny, welcome back, hope you had a good time? I know snowbound, I just don’t like bound as a synonym for stuck :)

              1. Thanks Mary, I had a lovely time. All those beautiful paintings and walking along that vast beach, but I did rather go mad in the Delft Pottery shop. :-)

  6. The beach is 3 1/2 miles away, just wondering whether to walk and get bus back?? mmm, sunny now but it could rain

    1. I should walk with your mac – I heard on the radio the other afternoon that if one walks about six and a half miles a week, it keeps the grey cells of the brain active and helps it work better,

  7. If I didn’t have ‘entrance exams’ for 3d I’d be back at work by now! Thanks for your help with that one crypticsue.

    One more crossword until Falmouth Beer Festival…

  8. I really enjoyed that – several top notch clues – 3d, 5d, 20d but my favourite was 11d. Didn’t know the dyke in 24a so had to use the blog for that one – even had the checking letters but couldn’t find it anywhere so didn’t like that one.

    Mary – re 10a – it is quite a common North American expression for stuck in the winter. Hope your walk did you good.

    I ventured out on my own today and feel quite chuffed with myself. Physio reckons I am doing very well – good mobility – albeit still using the crutches – only 3 more weeks and hopefully I will be able to drive again.

    Thanks for the excellent review Sue – enjoyed it and thanks to Jay for the puzzle.

    1. Well done, Lea. I hope you continue to improve. As for Mary’s problem with ‘snowbound’, perhaps it is mainly a North American expression.

      1. That’s possible but I lilked your explanation above for housebound as well – that’s what I am at the moment (other than a few minor outings) so I got snowbound quite easily. Then again – since I originate from Canada where snowbound can be a reality it may be that as well.

        You’re in Switzerland aren’t you – and of course up in the mountains you can get snowbound quite easily.

        1. Hi you two, yes I do agree with being snowbound, I just don’t like bound as a synonym for stuck, no problem, I give in :) Hi Lea didn’t ‘see’ much of you over the weekend, glad you’re ‘getting there’

          1. I didn’t get to Sunday’s until Tuesday as went out with the family to Cliveden for afternoon tea. It’s a NT house and gardens not far from me. My grandson (who is 16 months) couldn’t quite make out what was happening regarding my creutches and gave them a wide berth for quite a while.

            By the time I did the puzzles it wasn’t worth commenting on them (but did rate them).

            Hope your walk on the beach was good – sun is still shining here but it is a bit cool out.

  9. I don’t know how to recognise the crossword setters yet……but his name could be Basil….which is the answer I had for 22d for a long time. So, I then had the second part of 21a beginning with ‘b’ and just like andy was working on an anagram of ‘plausible lout.’

    I got there in the end – thank you crypticsue :)

  10. Nothing with which to take exception, but this one didn’t quite do it for me. Solid and workmanlike, but no real sense of satisfaction on completion. Thanks to Jay and “Sue the Review”.

  11. I was in the trickier than usual camp this morning but it was a four stopper! Many thanks to Jay for the workout and to crypticsue for the review.

  12. It seems to me that the Wednesday puzzles are getting slightly harder and slightly more enjoyable each week. I really liked this one – favourite clue 13d. Thanks to J and CS.

  13. Now back from The Netherlands with lots of Delft pottery and firmly back in the Clueless Club, I thought, after a profitless struggle with yesterday’s puzzle. Today’s went more smoothly, however, and I managed to finish it without too much grinding of teeth. I also put ‘entrance exams’ first for 3d and ‘tick’ for 23d, which held me up for a while. Once that was sorted out, I did find 25a an excellent clue, but my favourite was 13d.

  14. I thought this was a really good crossword – hard enough to be a bit of a challenge but doable. Thanks Jay.
    Had to use Google to check 9a as I’d never heard of the chap!
    Shouldn’t 16d have a word like ‘possibly’ or ‘for example’ on the end? I was stuck thinking around Baleareans for a while!
    Thanks for the blog crypticsue, 21a was my last in as well.
    Favourite 13d by a long way.

  15. Too much for me, so went to a lunchtime organ recital in one of the university colleges to recover from the struggle of trying to get more than a feeble six answers.

  16. Setter here
    Many thanks to you Sue for the review, and to all for the comments. Regarding ” Stuck” – SNOWBOUND is merely a cryptic definition of what you would be after a heavy fall in winter. The “stuck” does not refer exclusively to “bound”, but to the whole answer. Hope this eases a few minds…

  17. Did this at work today, and am now looking at the blog to understand the relevance of ‘timepiece’ in 11d. Got the answer but can’t see why. Any ideas?

    Thanks to Crypticsue for the review.

  18. Very bad day here hence the late comment. Allow me to warn you all about the dangers of pouring concrete into footings of a new extension without checking first that what looks like an ancient and defunct drain is not still functioning and connected to the main sewer pipe – concrete in sewer is NOT a good idea! This is what our builders have managed to do. Oh dear! :sad: Right, sorry about the rant – probably saves my husband from getting it when he comes home. Now on to the crossword – I started off quite slowly but it all fell into place eventually without having to resort to the blog. Just to be picky, because that’s how I’m feeling today, does it matter having ‘sad’ used twice in the same crossword – 9a for depressed and 2d for miserable? The anagrams 1a and 21a both took me a long time and I usually see them fairly quickly. Having decided that people living in Ibiza are Spaniards I actually got as far as looking up ‘paniard’ to see if it was a hitherto unknown word meaning villify! :oops: Favourites today (if I wasn’t too grumpy to have a favourite anything) are 24 and 25a and 11 and 13d.

    1. Oh, Kath, how perfectly awful! I don’t blame you in the least for feeling grumpy — and I spent a few moments wondering about ‘paniards’ too.

    2. Oh dear its better to have a man with a cold and a pile of ironing than builders pouring concrete into a working sewer pipe! I hope they’ve sorted it out for you now Kath?, I like the word paniards, it’s got to be a kind of dog, I think?/ , hope your day has got gradually better :)

      1. Thanks Mary – the husband with cold, jet lag and pile of ironing have all paled into insignificance! This is a really major problem – Thames Water now digging up everything in sight – getting a bit fed -up with apologising to neighbours although they are all, so far at least, being lovely.

  19. Best one of the week so far and some clever clues notably 24a and 25a. 17a also good. I finished it waiting to collect my boys from school and it was a nice distraction from today’s spending review. Thanks to Jay and for the analysis.

  20. I found this quite tough but nonetheless very enjoyable. My favourite clues were 25a and 11d- even though they came late they left me with that wonderful “arrrrrrrrrr” and a smile!

  21. What a dreadful puzzle, full of obscure and bizarre clues such as 9a and 14a. Sorry but in my opinion the last couple of weeks the DT has become a haven for the experts and very elitist with the exception of last Mondays excellent puzzle.
    It is catering for the few who are experts and leaving most readers floundering. I have asked around several groups of friends and acquaintances who are in almost total agreement that they don’t bother any longer with the DT crossword as it is (and I quote) ‘Just too tough and no longer fun’. It is the latter statement that I find most disturbing, surely the point of a good crossword is that is should be fun. The experts are already fully catered for with the Toughie, please lets return to puzzles that are more solvable by the general readership.

    1. Hi Barrie, I agree with a lot of what you say in particular your last two sentences, so todays puzzle is what it’s all about (Thurs) fun and fairly easy to solve, if I didn’t know better I would have said its another Rufus!

  22. I agree with Barry about the difficulty of this one. Wouldn’t use the word dreadful, but I finish the crossword obout 80% of the time and this one left me high and dry. Managed only about half of it. On wrong wavelength I guess.

  23. A very late input from me as I have been in hospital the last two days in cardiology – the bang on my head which I suffered on Monday when collecting the DT from the paper shop locally was more serious than I imagined at the time – it was in fact a cardiac arrest!! I fell over backwards in a faint and banged my head on the floor.

    Best clues for me were 25a & 1d.

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