DT 26427 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26427 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26427 (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.

Could new readers please read the Welcome post before asking questions about the site.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions.


1a    Legislator from European Parliament in service (6)
To get this legislator, put the abbreviation for European Parliament inside a word meaning service or obligation

4a    Lumpy gazpacho perhaps left a little earlier (8)
An adjective meaning lumpy is created by taking a description of gazpacho (4,4) and moving the L(eft) one position earlier

21a    Houses’ architect makes joke about soldier (5)
An architect who worked on the Houses of Parliament is created by putting a joke around a US soldier

27a    Cloth put over second exit (6)
Reverse a type of cloth and add S(econd) to get an exit


1d    Medicine doses given to unknown accumulation of fluid in the body (6)
These medicine doses are followed by an unknown value from an algebraic equation to get a condition characterized by unnatural accumulation of watery fluid in any part of the body

5d    Reprieves side to give vent to feelings (3,3,5)
Start with two-word noun meaning reprieves (3,4), add a sports side and the result is a phrase meaning to give vent to feelings

19d    Old man serving bird? Goose (7)
A charade of a synonym for old and a man in prison serving time (bird lime / Cockney rhyming slang) gives this large European goose

22d    Understand Greek as poetry primarily (5)
A word meaning to understand is formed from a charade of GR(eek), AS and the initial letter (primarily) of Poetry

The Saturday Crossword Club is now open. Membership is free and open to all. Feel free to leave comments.

Please don’t put whole or partial answers or alternative clues in your comment, else they may be censored!

103 comments on “DT 26427 (Hints)

  1. Many thanks to our mystery Saturday setter (assuming s/he is alternating with Cephas) for a nice start to the weekend. It took a little time to get in to my stride on this one but it resolved itself nicely.

  2. I finished this in pretty good time and enjoyed it. Thanks to the setter and to you, Big Dave, for the hints which helped me to understand 4a and 10a, where I had the answers without knowing why. 19d was a new word I had to look up. Favourites were 9a and 18d.

  3. Have finished all but 9a, just can’t see what this should be?? also although I have read 10a backwards, I still don’t understand?? although the forst four letters backwards are a place to rest? Harder than the last few Saturdays I thought, need to look up a few and Daves help for 2, thanks Dave, any help with 9a would be very welcome :)

  4. Fabulous prize puzzle today – delighted that I will get the chance to enjoy it all over again when I do the review, which won’t appear until 30 December as the closing date is longer this time to take account of Christmas. Didn’t take too long to solve but some great clues. Thanks to the mystery setter for the fun.

  5. I forgot to say Harrumph to the DT again. :( You are wasting your time with those ads as no-one looks at them!

      1. I got Mr CS to look – also the fact that the crossword was on the inside back page was a bit of a giveaway!

        1. I buy the paper and have absolutely no idea what today’s advert was about. The paper arrived, then I Immediately re-arranged it to put the Crossword back in its rightful place.

          How much does a full page Ad cost?

          Has anyone been following the “Letters to the Editor” this week concerning the best techniques for folding The Daily Telegraph while in bed? Today I used the simple, but effective “headbutt”!

    1. The Telegraph are not worried; they will charge the advertiser a small fortune I suspect.

      But I agree with you the back page is not meant for ads. The Sunday paper has been the same recently.

    2. I’m glad that I subscribe to Clued Up and don’t have to put up with those Crummy ads that make you fold the paper in the wrong places – harrumph

      1. Do as I do and fold the page while refusing to look at the ad – in a sad way I think I am getting my own back! Stuck re 19d – just need two letters and 20d – have an answer but can’t see it fitting all of the clue. Enjoyed this one. After thunder, lightening, hail and snow we now have sun!

        1. Hi Ainsley for nineteen down you need a four letter word for ‘old’ followed by a three letter word for a man serving a prison sentence, i.e. man serving bird to give you a type of goose

        2. For 19d, try hovering over the picture!

          In 20d the composer is a charade of where you might by goodies for Xmas and a word for “you and me”

          1. Thanks Mary & Big Dave. Yep got 19d thanks – just needed to use the **** matter ;) still looking at 20d

              1. Oops indeed – sorry! Now I have the answer to 20d I don’t like the clue – I always feel that if the answer is based on general knowledge and a little obscure at that, then the clue should be more helpful

            1. I think in 20d ‘good cheer’ is meant to be food, maybe? so the 1st four letters are somewhere you would get food? followed by the 2 leeter word for you & me

                    1. I think it’s the shop – see my above hint.

                      “source of” is ok for a single letter, but not for an indeterminate number.

                      BTW – don’t be impatient – I do have to eat from time to time!

                    2. Thanks BD – sorry! It’s just I normally enter the trail late on and don’t get many replies so am a little impatient . Hope you enjoyed lunch

          2. BD Why is it permissible to “hover over a picture” to give the full solution, whereas other comments have the dreaded asterisks inserted to replace too much information?

            1. Partially explained in #18 below.

              Basically I “give away” a handful of answers, but want to avoid the comments being littered with them. Also what I want to avoid is “I have A?B?C?, what’s the answer?”, especially when some of the letters are wrong!

              1. Please don’t stop giving away the odd answer! Its the only way us lesser mortals have of getting a fingerhold in these crosswords! I am constantly amazed at the speed and apparent ease at which you folk complete, what is to me, 3-4 days hard work. I have been doing these crosswords now for about 3 years and they don’t get any easier despite what people say!

                  1. Hi BD This is another tough puzzle for me but I will persevere with it although I admit to resorting to electronic help on occasion. Its great to have a resource where if I am totally stuck I can read through the thread and pick up pointers. Its helped me no end in the past!

  6. Really enjoyed today’s puzzle ;-) which I managed with BD’s hints so thank you for those! It was particularly enjoyable when you consider that I was supposed to be out and about shopping this morning in the freezing cold. But thick snow in Marlow which is still falling heavily has put paid to that. Ho hum, what fun! Liked 24a. I have 17a and 6d but don’t understand them.

    1. 17a is an anagram of WHERE THUDDING.

      6d is detectives inside what type of animal Bambi is – the definition, by example, is “sudden death”.

  7. A lovely puzzle for a Saturday morning, although I share Sue’s annoyance at finding it tucked away inside the back page. I was particularly amused by the construct of 24a and 18d and, factually, the wording of the clue is correct in both cases.

  8. Didn’t like todays at all, far too tough for me. Had to resort to my electronic friend rather too often. Many clues I don’t understand even with the answer i.e 20d what has the first 3 letters got to do with good cheer, why the P in 26 across, GOK who 21a is, don’t see what 4a has to do with lumpy, I thought it was a word for a stupid person or act, don’t see why 1a is a legislator surely it is someone who fills in for someone else. Still can’t see 10a, 1d and 9a (stockings and tights???). Ugh!

    1. Hi Barrie we are just debating 20d and waiting for BD to adjudicate. I agree with your comments on 1a. See earlier in comments which explains 10a – makes it quite a good clue!

    2. I agree with most of what you say Barrie, but having looked up the first 4 letters of 4a, lump is given as a synonym but I thought like youat first :)

    3. I’m with you Barrie but finally got there with some research. 9a’s wickerwork refers to a form of willow used in the same but I’d never heard of it. 1d: think of medicine that you put in your eyes. And there’s a ‘p’ in 26a because the first word is eqivalent to ‘lead’ and doesn’t use the word in the clue as I presume you have presumed. Hope this helps! Btw, something lovely about being snowed in and not feeling at all guilty about snuggling up with today’s crossword!

      1. 26 uses the chemical symbol for lead + a well known British force [in xwordland] and Hitler’s protection squad.

  9. Liked this one but needed the hints for 1 and 19d. Fav clues 9a, 16d and 18d.

    Have a good weekend all.

  10. Thanks BD needed the hints today. Harder than usual, got there in the end though. No favourite clue. Going to walk round the village in the snow after lunch and deliver the Christmas cards. It looks nice out there now

  11. No paper delivery again so I am late on duty. Luckily, Mary is back on form with her tips and going for the record again. Thought 19 was best and also liked 2 3 5 6 10 11 and 16. I am afraid, though, that 26 was pants!

  12. Definitely harder than last week’s, but finished with lots of help, thanks to Mary helping with the unknown golfing term. Some very nice clues here, with 9a as my favourite today – lots of them growing around here, by the Thames. 8″ of snow this morning and still falling!

    Thanks to setter and BD, certainly needed the hints today.

  13. Help me with four across you clever lot. It is stopping me get 7down which are my last two clues. I get the shifting one letter across bit but still don’t get the clue

    1. 7d a 6 letter word for very small without the first letter (not starting) gives you a word for irritating

        1. Mary. How come I can’t use the d word but if you click on to the lovely picture for 5d you get the whole solution??

          1. UTC

            I always let a limited number of cats out of the bag. There have been previous requests to stop doing this, but they have always been shouted down.

            I don’t want to draw a line between what is acceptable and what is not, so it is easier to ban all references in comments to words that are in the answer but not the clue.

            1. Point taken. By the way, where were the locos in the picture. I thought it was Harz Mountains but it doesn’t look quite right.

    2. Re 4a – think of the temperature at which gazpacho is served and then move the usual abbreviation for ‘left’ one letter earlier – you then end up (I hope) with the first four letters and then the second four letters are a word that means a ‘plate of food’ – all eight letters mean lumpy, as in a large lump of something, probably mud. That doesn’t sound very clear but I hope it helps!

    3. the clue says ‘gazpacho perhaps’ it wouldn’t say minestrone perhaps because this is served hot and gazpacho isn’t

  14. Liked this one a lot. More like this on Saturdays please DT. As a pathetic gesture of defiance I have posted the whole back page – Nicole Kidman in a white frock etc – instead of clipping out just the crossword! So that’s the pen gone for another week.

        1. Twice in how long? Can you remember the dates/years? (It’s just that I recall someone describing the vast number of entries sent in each week).

          1. Longer than I care to remember. Early 70’s probably. I seem to think it was a daily prize in those days.

      1. Hi, I’ve been sending it in for well over 25 years – probably missing 2 or 3 per year for various reasons. I won the consolation notepad, with embossed DT logo. about 2 years ago. Still trying. My guess is about 10,000 enties per week.

  15. Blimey – that was difficult! Have now, at last, finished it without resorting to the hints apart from a couple of explanations that I needed. It’s taken a VERY long time but I really don’t mind given the fact that we have had near blizzard conditions since about 8.00 this morning. I’m beginning to feel a bit like Winnie the Pooh – ” The more it snows, tiddely pom etc” – we now have about 8″ and it’s still coming down. I enjoyed the crossword very much – got held up by being completely unable to ‘see’ the two long anagrams (14 and 15a). Lots of really good clues – far too many to write them all but including 9, 10, 11a and 1, 2 and 8d. How did the ‘sailor’ get into 24a – the politician yes but sailor..?

    1. 24a The politician skippered a yacht called Morning Cloud (or, as he pronounced it “Meorning Cleoud”).

        1. The joke at the time was that, because he did so many book signings, an unsigned copy of “Sailing” was worth more than a signed one.

    2. 24a: Kath, thanks for pointing out “sailor” – completely missed its relevance. It often happens that when I immediately get a solution,as in this case, I never bother to work out all the wordplay! Maybe, we should try to write our own review after solving! Or, maybe NOT!

      1. Several of us who do the blogging have said the same. Often you put an answer in because of the definition and think “I’ll go back and look at that later” and then you never do. When you are reviewing a puzzle, there is no hiding place!

        1. So, thanks to all the Bloggers!

          “No Hiding Place”. Brings back memories! Chief Superintendent Tom Lockhart etc. Looked for a quick YouTube offering, but they’re all about 10 minutes long, so I resisted the temptation of adding a link.

  16. Seem to have forgotten lots of things – thank you to the setter and Big Dave – harrumph to the paper for the crossword being in the wrong place – and dare I have a quiet moan about golf?

  17. one of Grandsons arrived unexpectedly ( thought the snow would keep them at bay) and wants to play Bingo! Oh the joys! (not) back later much later :(

  18. Oh the joy of end of term and the snow making the 101 things I have to do impossible for today. Looking forward to a couple of weeks crosswords and blog following.
    Enjoyed todays offering (thanks setter) and was thrilled to get almost all without resorting to ‘helps’. However….. several were worked out with no idea why! – so thanks a bunch BD and the gang for explaining 4a,27a & 19d. 2d,5d and 11a were favourites along with 9a once I got the full ‘stockings and tights’ bit!

  19. Phew. Finally finished. Managed to make progress whilst watching the SCD final on Sky
    + but needed the hints before finishing.

    Would never have solved 4a. Don’t like the clue.

    May I add that today is very depressing for cricket fans. After a couple of great games the batting has crumbled again as we have become accustomed to all too often.

    Cannot see us retaining the Ashes now.

  20. Good morning folks. 15 hour journey from the Midlands yesterday including 10 hours on the M40. What a joy. Anyway – took me a while to get into this which I thought was a tough Saturday example my favourites being 24a and 4a.

    Snow is much nicer on Christmas cards.

    Early night tonight and lazy TV viewing.

    1. We were planning the reverse journey – SW London to Midlands via M40 on Saturday to visit my sister and parents. Having seen the forecast, we decided not to risk it. Reading this, I think we made the right decision!

  21. Hello. Have been lurking for sometime! I was amazed that some of you bloggers out there did not remark that no one could land today at the answer to 24a because of the weather!

  22. Out driving 600 miles in the snow from Yorkshire to Devon and back so picked this one up late last night. I liked it a lot. I still had a couple of clues to crack today so thanks Dave for picking to help on the ones that had foxed me! And thanks for the 5d picture…I didn’t need help with that one. 17a was my favourite clue.

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