DT 26413 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26413

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26413

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment **

Big Dave is stuck at Birmingham airport this morning (not snowbound, but waiting for a later flight than expected) so I have the (dubious?) honour of reviewing today’s puzzle. Unfortunately it’s not a Ray T this week and I can’t say that I found it very stimulating – there are a few good clues but for the most part it’s fairly humdrum. If you really liked it (or if you didn’t) please let us know in a comment.

Across Clues

1a  Celebrate tum and pert bust (7)
{TRUMPET} – this was the last answer I put in because I read the second word as TURN rather than TUM and was trying to make an anagram of “and pert”.  In fact this verb meaning to celebrate is an anagram (bust) of TUM and PERT. I’m not sure how you “celebrate tum”!

5a  Worker almost loaded — one’s difficult to control (7)
{HANDFUL} – a description of something or someone that’s difficult to control is a charade of a worker and an adjective meaning loaded or replete without (almost) its final L.

9a  Parrot’s wild — I tame it (7)
{IMITATE} – parrot is a verb here. It’s an anagram (wild) of I TAME IT.

10a  Charged wartime inmate with initially erroneous links to Communist (7)
{POWERED} – we want a verb meaning charged (a mobile phone, say). Start with the abbreviation for a military captive (wartime inmate) and add the first letter (initially) of E(rroneous) and a shorthand way of saying Communist.

11a  Cruelly, lovely tin gets smashed (9)
{VIOLENTLY} – an anagram (gets smashed) of LOVELY TIN produces an adverb which is meant to mean cruelly, though I’m not convinced that they mean the same at all.

12a  Break hands, we hear (5)
{PAUSE} – a temporary stop (break) sounds like hands, especially those of an animal.

13a  Cavity walls in usual houses (5)
{SINUS} – this cavity is hidden (houses) in the clue.

15a  Swedes perhaps cultivated from one pasture when temperature drops (9)
{EUROPEANS} – Swedes is a definition by example (indicated by the maybe). We want an anagram (cultivated) of ONE PAS(t)URE, with the T(emperature) dropped.

17a  Flown to hospital and manner improved (9)
{AIRLIFTED} – a verb meaning flown to hospital is a charade of a manner and a verb meaning improved.

19a  Thatcher’s efforts can be seen here (5)
{ROOFS} – Thatcher is the first word so that it’s capitalised in an attempt to make you think of the PM, but what you actually want is the skilled worker.

22a  Exhibiting Degas finally in gallery shows artistic discernment (5)
{TASTE} – put the last letter (finally) of (Dega)S inside the name of a London art gallery.

23a  Meet European by new bar (9)
{ENCOUNTER} – string together E(uropean), N(ew) and the sort of bar that goods are bought and sold across.

25a  Conservative arguing and boasting (7)
{CROWING} – start with C(onservative) and add a synonym for arguing.

26a  To make progress I recommend embracing proportional representation (7)
{IMPROVE} – put I and a verb meaning to recommend or propose around the abbreviation for proportional representation.

27a  Appeared united after end of debate (7)
{EMERGED} – to make a verb meaning appeared put another verb meaning united after the last letter (end) of debatE.

28a  A good place to put your blooming little ‘uns (7)
{NURSERY} – a real old chestnut – a weak cryptic definition which could be referring to bringing up infants or bringing on plants.

Down Clues

1d  First woman to be caught by this group of criminals? (7)
{THIEVES} – the name of the first woman mentioned in the Old Testament goes inside (is caught by) THIS.

2d  University growth — it’s mythical (7)
{UNICORN} – a mythical beast is a charade of an abbreviation of university and a growth on the foot.

3d  Silver dish (5)
{PLATE} – double definition.

4d  Behaviour shown by mate swimming in river (9)
{TREATMENT} – the manner in which you behave towards someone is an anagram (swimmimg) of MATE inside the river which flows through Nottingham.

5d  Lucky chap — pyjamas fitted (5)
{HAPPY} – hidden (fitted) in the clue is a word meaning (apparently) lucky. I wouldn’t have said that this word means the same as lucky, but Chambers has “lucky” as the first meaning against it so I can’t really argue.

6d  It’s within your grasp unless you’re online (9)
{NEWSPAPER} – the best clue of the day – this is where CrypticSue gets the puzzle.

7d  Recipe’s milk substitute (7)
{FORMULA} – double definition, though the use of the word for baby feed (milk substitute) really means the same as recipe.

8d  First to land on snakes? Just the opposite (7)
{LADDERS} – the opposite of snakes in the board game are produced from L(and) and types of snake.

14d  Talk about winter in Paris and what you might be doing (9)
{SHIVERING} – put a synonym for to talk (in the sense of to confess or provide information to the police) around the French word for winter to get what many of us are doing now.

16d  Right schooling? Not a drop (9)
{REDUCTION} – put together R(ight) and EDUC(a)TION (without the A – not A) to make a drop.

17d  Review of recital — you might read it in The Telegraph (7)
{ARTICLE} – an anagram (re-view) of RECITAL.

18d  Set to rights through relaxation or drug? (7)
{RESTORE} – a verb meaning to set to rights is a charade of a synonym for relaxation, OR and the abbreviation for a particular drug.

20d  What batsman might be given near end (7)
{OUTCOME} – the sentence of a cricket umpire is followed by a verb meaning to near to make a result or consequence (end).

21d  Head of Government enters Surrey for a change — when he’s available for consultation? (7)
{SURGERY} – the time when a politician (or doctor) is available for consultation is formed by putting the first letter (head) of G(overnment) inside an anagram (for a change) of SURREY. The anagram only requires you to swap two letters round to get the answer.

23d  Gradually moved skirt downwards at first (5)
{EDGED} – a verb meaning gradually moved is formed from a border or skirt and the first letter (at first) of D(ownwards).

24d  Heading off for a meal — this could be stimulating (5)
{UPPER} – remove the first letter from a meal to leave an informal word for a stimulant.

I liked 26a and 1d, but my favourite clue today was 6d. Let us know what you thought in a comment!

84 comments on “DT 26413

  1. Not a bad puzzle – I quite enjoyed it but it didnt take long. I had the same reading problems as you at 1a but they didnt last long!. 14d was my topical favourite.
    Thanks to the setter and to gazza for stepping in.

  2. I would agree that this was not ‘very stimulating’, and one of those puzzles that took longer to fill the grid than it did to work out the answer. At one point I did question if I was completing a DT puzzle!
    With one word answers, I wondered if this was a Ray T puzzle, but would expect something a little tougher from him than this.
    It was pleasant enough though.. so thanks to setter and to gazza.

  3. I fancy a lot of people will leaving the Clueless Club today, if there was ever a time for it, today has to be it. If I hear one word from Barry I swear I will be on the next flight to where ever he is and will sit down and beat the answers out of him. (calm down Nubian, the weather is getting to you).
    Anyway, as you can see it is a doddle today and I agree with Gazza, not very demanding. Now the Toughie is well worth a go so don.t bother with the Cryptic just go straight to the Toughie.
    Thanks to Gazza, his effors are appreciated regardless of puzzle quality.

  4. Hi Gazza, nice to see you on a Thursday, this was once again a 3* at least for me, but lots I didn’t like today, 4d – behaviour – treatment? 5d – lucky – happy? 5d – americanism?
    and a few more, maybe it’s just me, the top left corner went in really quickly and then I ‘plodded on’ with the rest, I don’t understand why there should be an apostrophe ‘uns in 28a, doesn’t it usually mean ‘h’ has been dropped? By the way if anyone from the CC thinks I do these without books and machines these days I would just like to say I am as dependent on them as ever and once again I do not hesitate to use them if I have worked out what the setter wants and know that I don’t know the word for it :-D
    Thaks for review Gazza, just going to read through, would be grateful if you could explain the apostrophe to me?

  5. Enjoyed this puzzle even though it did not take long to solve. My paper shows “tum” in 1A. Favourite also 14D.
    Looked back at yesterdays blog, is this the longest ever? An indication how many of us did not get to work!
    Thanks to setter and Gazza for stepping in at short notice. Sympathies to Big Dave stuck at the airport.

    1. Pete

      Thanks for the sympathy, but I found a nice café at nearby Solihull – breakfast cost me about half what I would have paid just to park at the airport.

  6. Sadly given the amount of snow and drifting and cold wind, today I had to use a computer to get my crossword but even using A4 paper didn’t stop me from solving a fairly average Thursday puzzle in a quick time. No particular favourites but I did think 14d particularly relevant to today and 8d would have been very relevant, as Gazza says, had I been able to get out of the house. Thanks to the Mysteron (I did wonder if it was Mr T – perhaps he will let us know later.

    The Toughie has even more relevant clues in it and is recommended.

    Now back to trying to avoid Mr CS who is doing things like revamping the shoe rack and emptying chests of drawers and saying things like ‘why are we keeping this’? Think I will go and make a snowman to get away from all that ‘organising’

    1. I’d be amazed if it were by Ray T. Some of the clues are too verbose and not up to his standard (I hope I don’t have to eat my words later!!).

      1. Gazza,
        Its not one of Ray’s – I have just done the Quick and the trademark single word clues are not there.

    2. The Toughie is, mostly, a better crossword today. However, I hope that the reviewer is not Scottish.

  7. Agree simple but quite entertaining – liked 8 down – worth the slide to the newsagents this morning.

  8. Oh dear.

    I liked 26A – certainly not for the political sentiment, but it was a nicely constructed clue.

    That’s about it, I’m afraid.

  9. Ive just noticed in the picture at 19a the Thatcher has put a scarf on because it is snowing, wierd eh ?

  10. Not the most difficult but I needed a clue to 20d probably because as soon as I see a cricket clue my brain switches off– I know I won’t know it!! Otherwise I liked 12a and 14d. Completely cut off from civilisation, no papers, no post, no mobile hairdresser and no supermarket deliveries! Thank God for a computer and the internet. Hopefully the snow will disappear before Christmas, but I have my doubts!

  11. Not out of the CC yet, needed the books and a hint or three for a few I didn’t understand. Also misread TUM in 1a, but realised it was an anagram and it was the first in, with 1d next. I’ll agree to 1d and 6d being best, 14d quite good as well, but several pretty weak clues.

    Thanks to setter and Gazza. Dusting of snow overnight, nothing much.

    1. This is the 3rd time I’ve tried to post a reply to this comment, they just don’t seem to appear, anyway, well done Geoff, you see you can do it! Lucky you having no snow

      1. I find comments sometimes take a while to appear. Maybe the air is too cold ?? (Posted at 13.16)

  12. I did this quickly and enjoyed it. When I read the first clue I thought that it was likely to be a Ray T but lots of the little crossword clues are more than one word so probably not .. ? As other people have said in the comments I didn’t quite see the point of the apostrophe in 28a. I liked 1 and 12a and 2, 6, 8 and 14d. More cricket! Very cold and snowing a bit but no accumulation – still don’t quite trust it! Off now to take my Mum to an outpatients appointment at the hospital. Back later – suppose it could be MUCH later! Thanks to Ray T, or whoever set this one and to Gazza for the review.

  13. Many thanks to Gazza for standing in at very short notice. My son missed his connecting flight at Paris CDG by two minutes and that cost him (and me) two hours.

    I had done the puzzle before I left home, and was not very impressed – I think Gazza’s assessment is about right.

  14. Pretty poor crossword with 6d being its only saving grace. Thanks Gazza for the review. Toughie wasn’t much harder so a good day for toughie virgins to have a wee go.

  15. I thought that today’s puzzle was worth the effort just for 6d alone – so I wont be jumping on the bandwagon either with three or four wheels (Ref: Giovanni: Toughie 467 Comment #15). Will Giovanni exact his revenge tomorrow?

    1. Franco I’ve kept quiet for just that very reason, and I have a sneaking suspicion the Don will do just that

      1. Yes, I agree! The Don did seem a bit miffed off, but “revenge is a dish best served cold”. Appropriate for the weather at the moment!

      1. It seems so. Apparently England were eliminated in the first round of voting, although that hasn’t been confirmed.

              1. If only it had been England & Wales! We could have had Gareth Bale to help us – he can do no wrong! What does “Diolch” mean? Are you giving us a Welsh course? (yesterday “Cawl”)

                1. dymuno i chi, nos da(?)

                  It doesn’t look Welsh, but Google Translate tells me that it is “I wish you, goodnight”.

  16. Late on duty today as papers were not delivered and I had to go and fetch it from the shop. I thought it was OK and 14 was very apt after my trudge. Also liked 1d 6 7 8 15 and 17a. At least they were all proper words. I see Mary and Kath have been moaning again! Never mind, there is the footy in Russia to look forward to.

          1. There used to be a sports paper on Saturday in Sheffield called the Green Un. I wonder if it is still going?

  17. I find it difficult to come up with even one cryptic clue a week for COW and here I am daring to criticise the brilliant minds that create these crosswords, maybe that’s progress!

  18. Snow finally arrived today so worked from home. I did not find this as humdrum as some. Many thanks to the Mysteron and to Gazza for the notes.

  19. Fairly straightforward except for 14D which was the last to go in. There seems to be a view amongst crossword setters that everyone has a knowledge of French (I don’t, I did Spanish at school). I have to say that I don’t agree with using foreign words unless they are words or phrases commonly used in English. French may have been the lingua franca once, but it certainly isn’t any more. (see what I’ve done there?).

    1. Here here Ayayay, Welsh isn’t allowed apparently, we have French, Italian, Spanish, German, Americanisms, but Welsh is not allowed!

  20. Hi all. Home from work early to avoid being snowed in down here on the Sussex coast and have finished the cword in what seems no time at all. Well I say finished – I am still pondering 20d – got the first part of the clue so I’ll get there soon. I am normally the last to leave a comment so good to get in earlier today. Not sure what to do with myself now!

  21. Fairly easy I though – they have all been 2* this week and i’m looking forward to a better challenge tomorrow. Last in was 14d as I waited for the Circle Line train doing exactly that.

    At least not getting the World Cup means we can concentrate on getting Britain moving. BAH!

  22. Thought this only rated a 1* for difficulty. However, also mis-read 1 across.

    Thanks to setter and Gazza

  23. The surface for EUROPEAN was the smoothest,therefore it was my best clue in a rather pedestrian xword.

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