DT 26425 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26425

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26425

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

This week’s run of fairly easy puzzles continues with this one from today’s mystery setter.  A glimpse at the Quick crossword confirms that the mystery setter is almost certainly Ray T!

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    Unselfish, good to score inside box (11)
{CONSIDERATE} – a word meaning unselfish is built up from a term meaning in a position to score a goal inside a box

9a    Eternity embracing revolutionary left position (7)
{ECHELON} – put a very long time around Crosswordland’s favourite revolutionary and L(eft) to get a position in the hierarchy of an organization

10a    Send back for example, a first soup (6)
{POTAGE} – reverse (send back) the abbreviation of “for example”, A and a synonym for first to get a thick soup

12a    Accuse one politician individually (7)
{IMPEACH} – a word meaning to accuse a public official of an offence is a charade of I (one), a politician and a synonym for individually

13a    Struck and slapped initally with glove (7)
{SMITTEN} – a word meaning struck or obsessed is a charade of S (Slapped initially – is the spelling error in the newspaper version?) and a glove with two sections, one for the thumb and the other for all four fingers.

14a    Smashes runs with boundaries (5)
{RENDS} – a word meaning smashes or breaks is a charade of R(uns) and boundaries or limits

15a    Play patience (9)
{TOLERANCE} – a double definition where play is in the sense of permissible range of variation in values when measuring

17a    Swayed a month back after do with Bordeaux? (9)
{CONVINCED} – to get a word meaning swayed or persuaded put the shortened form of the last month of the year reversed (back) after a word meaning to do or swindle and the French word for wine (Bordeaux – definition by example, hence the question mark)

20a    Assail English premier outside (5)
{BESET} – a word meaning to assail is constructed by putting E(nglish) inside a synonym for premier or top

22a    Police chief following endless stay for trial (7)
{TASTING} – the lead singer of the group The Police follows s(TA)y (endless stay) to get a trial, perhaps of the French wine in 17a!

24a    Degradation from Herod in Galilee (7)
{ERODING} – this degradation is hidden inside the clue

25a    Famous bowler’s main opponent? (6)
{ARMADA} – the famous bowler is Sir Francis Drake the main is the sea!

26a    Asylum seeker perhaps shouting, put on plane (7)
{MIGRANT} – someone who is possibly an asylum seeker is built by putting shouting after a Russian aircraft

27a    Primate’s one crazy ape! (11)
{IMPERSONATE} – an anagram (crazy) of PRIMATE’S ONE gives a word meaning to ape or mimic


2d           European city banks after gold (7)
{ORLEANS} – this European city is constructed by putting a word meaning banks or inclines after the heraldic term for gold

3d           Tiny chest, bust, is fake (9)
{SYNTHETIC} – an anagram (bust) of TINY CHEST gives an adjective meaning fake

4d           End up escaping, revealing tricks (5)
{DUPES} – hidden inside (revealing) the clue is a verb meaning tricks

5d           More weather-beaten sailor up on deck (7)
{RATTIER} – an adjective meaning more weather-beaten is derived by reversing (up, as this is a down clue) a sailor over (on, once again as this is a down clue) a deck or stage

6d           Heavyweight we hear, getting cramp (7)
{TIGHTEN} – this word meaning to cramp sounds like (we hear) a  heavyweight or giant

7d           Return match (11)
{RECIPROCATE} – a double definition

8d           Feature about work from composer (6)
{CHOPIN} – put a facial feature around a short word for a work to get this composer

11d         Given a test, I organised research (11)
{INVESTIGATE} – an anagram (organised) of GIVEN A TEST I gives a verb meaning to research

16d         One may get a damsel in trouble! (6,3)
{LADIES’ MAN} – an anagram (trouble) of A DAMSEL IN results in someone who enjoys flirting with women

18d         ‘Cure’ play number first (7)
{NOSTRUM} – this old-fashioned cure prepared by an unqualified person is constructed from a word meaning to play a guitar preceded by an abbreviation of number

19d         From Italy, china includes Italian fake (7)
{IMITATE} – after I(taly) put a Cockney china around IT(alian) to get a verb meaning to fake

20d         Delivered and born before estimated time (7)
{BROUGHT} – a word meaning delivered is a charade of B(orn), a word meaning estimated or approximate and T(ime)

21d         Wind tears up almost everything (6)
{SPIRAL} – a verb meaning to wind or twist comes from a word meaning tears reversed (up( and most of a synonym for everything

23d         Grand redhead with bottom on lawn (5)
{GRASS} – a charade of G(rand) R (Red head) and a slang term for the bottom results in a lawn

I quite enjoyed this one.  Thanks Ray, the Police clue alone has convinced me it’s you!

68 comments on “DT 26425

  1. Finished todays with help from my electronic friend. Again I am afraid I must disagree with the rating, IMHO it is a 3 star, parts are very tricky esp the NE corner, never heard of 10a and 5d took a lot of getting. Loved 6d and 25a is def the clue of the day for me, very clever and made me smile :-)

    1. Agree Barrie a three star for me today also, fav clues 17a, 25a, 3d, just didn’t ‘see’ 22a and put testing and couldn’t understand why! Thanks for hints Dave, will go read them now :)

  2. I thought that this was a Ray T puzzle, but if Barrie’s finished it and liked it, then perhaps I’m wrong :D

  3. I thought it was RayT too. I enjoyed it and found it a bit more of a stretch than previous days. I liked the ‘good to score’ in 1a (with the surface reading.
    Thanks to the setter and to BD.

  4. I enjoyed this. Thought from the clues alone that it must be a Ray T before I checked the Quick to make sure. Didn’t take too long to solve and I would go with BD’s ratings. My favourite was 22a, mainly because I always forget about the pop group and keep trying to find a head of the Met or something similar. Thanks to Ray (I’m sure it’s you) and to BD too.

    I don’t particulary recommend today’s Toughie at all, try it and you will see why!

        1. As BD likes us to comment on the right page for each puzzle, I shall content myself here with a Harrumph and wait for the review later on

  5. Managed it today, brain must have switched back on . Liked it a lot, 23d made me smile, thanks BD for review and Ray for the puzzle

    1. That is the only clue I thought was awful Ddot, not just because it was slightly crude but because it suggests that maybe the setter was struggling slightly to be deperate enough to use this?? each to his or her own :) but surely ‘donkey’ on lawn would have been better!?

            1. Sorry Mary, puerile schoolboy humour I guess. Lol
              Forecast said drop in temp followed by snow from midday, they got it spot on, down 2 degrees and it’s thick and settling, they promised 7″ for the North West!!!

                1. Bolton, Mary, north of the town at the beginning of the moors, I can usually see Belmont Moor and Winter Hill but not today

              1. Here in Peterborough forecasted snow at 3pm, and sure enough, spot on. Now it’s just wet but the temperature is now -1 and falling all the time. Slippery walk home no doubt and even slippier dog walk. If less traffic would be safer to walk in the treated roads than on untreated pavements. Gripe over!!

  6. What fun!! This was a lovely puzzle with super clues, The only one I had real difficulty with was 14a “smashes”?I don’t really get it. Liked 10a 17a 25a and 18, 20d

    1. Hi Brendam, well done, I think 14a is just a synonym for smashes using ‘r’ for runs together with ‘ends’ (boundaries) ?

  7. I have just come across this blog – thanks it has really helped me get back into the Telegraph cryptic crossword after a long break – I am the only one who messed it up by putting CHIANTI for 19d (anagram of CHINA and IT – wine coming from Italy)?

      1. Thanks Big Dave – sorry my post should of course have been phrased as a question not a statement!

    1. Hope you don’t get snowed in again Brendam, don’t know about you but we can’t get any grocery deliveries by certain supermarkets until 29th Dec! will have to have Christmas late!!

  8. Reasonable test today although in the end I agree with the 2* rating. Top right corner tok a while to resolve.
    Thanks to setter and Big Dave for the hints.

  9. The wit and innuendo in this puzzle tells me it was Ray T. Loved every clue but best was 22 followed by 25 [ I bet Mary thought that was cricket!] but all the rest were good. Most enjoyable.

  10. I assumed it was a Ray T having checked the quick first and all one-word answers bar 16d. If it is, I’m pretty surprised that I’ve done it! Needed lots of help and checking letters to complete. Is 1a to do with football? I don’t understand it all!

    Thanks to setter and BD.

    1. Yes Geoff, it is, ‘good to score’ – on side – inside box – crate
      Really well done today, out of CC before to long then? :)

      1. You’re joking! I’m far too dependent on the books and toys. Reckon I’m a life-member of the CC!

        1. That’s what I thought and I’d get back in if the rules weren’t against it! – One of these days Geoff……………..

  11. Mightly hampered today by the fact that the train was 10 minutes late and half the usual number of carriages so had to solve this with the paper 2 cm in from of my nose and no pen room! When the carriage thinned out, it was a gentle run through to wrtie in the answer fill in the blanks. Coupled that with a very nice Christmas lunch, and I have not even begun to look at the Toughie.

  12. Good workout – surprised that the ladies liked it, what with a mild cricket theme running through to match Day 1 of the 3rd Test (we did very well, by the way – one almost feels sorry for the demoralised Ozzies. But not quite!) Yes BD, the typo in 13a appears in print form too.

      1. Who me!? As a Yorky I’d hate to appear smug, or to rub their baggy, green caps in the dirt! Oh, go on then, just this once!!

  13. I feel that I am plummeting into the CC – I have found the last few days very difficult – whereas normally I can finish with little or no help.

    5d – in what context can “Rattier” mean “more weather-beaten”?

    1. I often get weeks like that Franco! Chambers does give untidy but not weather beaten, setters licence I suppose :) ?

      1. Thanks, Mary! I know you’re no longer in charge of the CC, but to your knowledge, are there any free places at the moment? Do we have to pay tuition fees? How much?

        5d must be so obvious! No-one else has complained!

          1. IMHO all I could think of was that ratty can equal shabby, and if shabby is dilapidated or run down it could be weatherbeaten. If anyone knows better I bow to their knowlege but that’s the best I can suggest Franco.

            1. Andy, Thanks for your suggestion! But, I am still waiting for the correct explanation.

              This reminds me of all the years that I was not so privileged to have the solutions explained to me – as on BD’s Blog!

              5d is still bugging me! More help, please!

  14. Yes, one of mine. Thanks to BD and to all for your observations.

    I felt a little faint after reading the first comment, but I’ve recovered now…

    Ray T

  15. Just about to start today’s – will keep you posted. Hope you are all well and it has started snowing here

  16. New to the blog but want to thank contributers, especially the ladies for weeks of entertainment. Normally on line too late but as Ainsley hasn’t started yet thought I would complain about “rattier” too.
    In London all day for “Front Row” quiz at BBC & “Made in Dagenham” with crossword lasting thru lunch & journey home but finished on train.

  17. I worked steadily through this puzzle in between putting drops in my eyes and maybe I am becoming quirky at my age.
    The only clue that I liked was 27a – I thought that the rest of the puzzle was humdrum.
    Sorry Ray T!

  18. Hi Terry agree with Rattier. I need 7d 17a 22a 18d & 19d. I think 7d is the key – once o get that I am sure the rest will fall in place

    1. 7d Return match (11)

      It is, as stated, a double definition. The first means to return a favour for example. The second is match as in fit or ‘work together with’ as in a piece of machinery or gearbox.

      Hope it helps Ainsley! – By the Way, do you know that you can click ‘Reply ‘ to a comment to keep the thread nested (like I did here) as opposed to starting a new one? – Keeps things tidy!.

  19. Got there but I think match as a clue for the answer is a bit tenuous. Nice cw though. Best for me 1a & 16d. Night night

  20. Oh dear!! :oops: Absolutely couldn’t do this one at all and I normally love Ray T crosswords. Didn’t even look at it until 9.00pm (mistake number one) – by then had already had supper and three glasses of wine (mistake number two) – had had the day from hell (the final nail in the coffin but this time not my fault!!) Given how much I usually enjoy his puzzles I do rather wish I had left it until tomorrow but decided to give myself the reward of the crossword. Never mind – you can’t win them all!! I do rather agree with various people who didn’t care for 5d – it wouldn’t have helped me this evening but I just can’t see ‘weather beaten’ being synonymous with ‘rattier’. Night night all – perhaps tomorrow will be a better day in general …..

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