DT 26453 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26453

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26453

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Our Wednesday Wizard conjures up a puzzle that is not too difficult.

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    In case of emergency stop this union (6)
{EQUITY} – inside EY (case of EmergencY) put a word meaning to stop to get this actors’ union

4a    Bad language is ultimately exhausting (8)
{SWEARING} – this bad language is a charade of S (iS ultimately) and a word meaning exhausting

9a    Fix brace attached to exterior of residence (6)
{REPAIR} – a word meaning to fix or mend is constructed by putting a brace or couple after RE (exterior of ResidencE)

10a    Swine’s unrestrained love confined to pub (4,4)
{WILD BOAR} – this feral swine with prominent tusks is constructed from a word meaning unrestrained followed by O (love) inside (confined to) a pub

11a    Lucky plate on wall? (9)
{HORSESHOE} – a metal plate consisting of a curved piece of iron is often nailed to a wall as a lucky charm

13a    Experience discrimination (5)
{TASTE} – a double definition

14a    Part of plane to develop during a career (13)
{UNDERCARRIAGE} – this part of an aeroplane is an anagram (develop) of DURING A CAREER

17a    Oliver, for example, is in charge of meeting for game (7,6)
{MUSICAL CHAIRS} – Lionel Bart’s Oliver is a definition by example – follow it with a word meaning “is in charge of a meeting” to get a party game

21a    Runs into regular making a comeback — what cheek! (5)
{NERVE} – put R(uns) into a word meaning regular reversed (making a comeback) to get cheek or audacity

23a    Back, for example and stop development (9)
{GESTATION} – reverse (back) the abbreviation of “for example” in Latin and follow it with a stop on a railway line to get a word meaning development or incubation

24a    Ban hard water — it can be dangerous (5,3)
{BLACK ICE} – a charade of to put under trade-union ban and water that is frozen hard gives something that can be dangerous to drive over

25a    Commandeer transport for sailor after sounding off (6)
{HIJACK} – a word meaning to illegally commandeer transport, typically an aeroplane, comes from a word for a sailor after a word that sounds like off or decayed

26a    Cook ten fish and snarl (8)
{ENTANGLE} – an anagram (cook) of TEN followed by a word meaning to fish gives a word meaning to snarl or intertwine

27a    Fired-up and ripped off, having missed start (6)
{HEATED} – a word meaning fired-up is derived from a word meaning ripped off or defrauded without the initial C (having missed start)


1d    Crude electrical connection to terminal of battery (6)
{EARTHY} – a word meaning crude is a charade of an electrical connection followed by the final (terminal) letter of batterY

2d    A hairdresser might offer such blows (9)
{UPPERCUTS} – what a hairdresser might offer is actually short-arm blows struck by boxers

3d    Rump parliament’s ultimate disastrous denial (4,3)
{TAIL END} – the rump or final part comes from T (parliamenT‘s ultimate) followed by an anagram (disastrous) of DENIAL

5d    Convincing victories he saw dressed in cricket flannels (11)
{WHITEWASHES} – these convincing sporting victories in which the opponents fail to win a single game are derived by putting an anagram (dressed) of HE SAW inside cricket flannels

6d    A universal change — do it right for accountant (7)
{AUDITOR} – run together A, U(Universal, as in a certificate designating a film that people of any age are allowed to see), an anagram (change) of DO IT and R(ight) to get a job for an accountant

7d    Images of single Tories (5)
{ICONS} – these images or portraits are a charade of I (one / single) and a short word for Tories

8d    Worker spending time in bed? (8)
{GARDENER} – a cryptic definition of a worker who tends flower beds

12d    Rational support for listening to terrible fear of a clockmaker (11)
{HOROLOGICAL} – a word meaning rational supports (under in a down clue) what sounds like (listening) to terrible fear to get an adjective meaning “of a clockmaker”

15d    A ship worker admits trouble from attacker (9)
{ASSAILANT} – A, a ship and a worker insect are placed around (admits) a word meaning trouble to get an attacker

16d    A crew fit and willing to comply (8)
{AMENABLE} – a charade of A, a crew or group of workers and a word meaning fit give an adjective meaning willing to comply

18d    Very nearly stopping report (5,2)
{CHECK IN} – take all except the final G of a word meaning stopping or restraining and the result is a phrasal verb meaning to report

19d    Think of one play in game (7)
{IMAGINE} – a word meaning to think comes from I (one) followed by an anagram (play) of IN GAME

20d    Slithered along top of stairs, wearing nothing (6)
{SNAKED} – a word meaning slithered along like a reptile is a charade of S (top of Stairs) and an adjective meaning wearing nothing

22d    Show response time following care order (5)
{REACT} – a verb meaning to show a response is created by putting T(ime) after an anagram (order) of CARE

I’m off to tackle Giovanni’s Toughie!

28 comments on “DT 26453

    1. I wondered that myself Nubian but with hindsight I’ll put it down to me getting the hang of the quirks :)

  1. Lovely Jay Wednesday puzzle. Always takes a few clues to get into his mindset but then take the normal ltime to complete it. My favourite clue as it made me smile the most is 17a. Thanks to Jay for the entertainment and BD for the review.

    Those who struggled with the Toughie yesterday should give Giovanni a go. It has some splendid words in it, one of which definitely requires dictionary confirmation and a couple of D’Oh moments too.

  2. Good morning Dave, I needed my little machine quite a lot today to find the word I was looking for! the kind of crossword that doesn’t provoke any adverse comments or any really ‘ooh’ moments, having said that I liked 1a and 1d, 4a and 17a, had never heard the word at 12d so although I knew what I was looking for I had to look the word up, also liked 20d, second time this week we have had 25a as an answer I think, thanks for revies Dave just going to read through, more a 3* for me today :)

  3. A lovely puzzle, I thought. Nothing too taxing, but still requiring some imagination and thought. I liked 17a and 12d. Thanks to setter and BD for the review.

  4. Got stuck trying to make an anagram of “Part of plane to” at 14a, till I realised it was t’other way about. Nice 3* – thanks to the setter & BD.

        1. And me, but once the penny dropped, it opened up a few more clues. Nice puzzle today – took me a while but very satisfying

  5. I agree, pretty much, with all the comments above so will, for once, not go on at length! :smile:
    Favourite clues today – 17a, 5, 12 and 20d.
    Not bad weather today – cold but sunny – might do some stuff in the garden.

  6. Nice puzzle – only needed help with 2D and 27A – just on the wrong track. Thanks Big Dave :)

  7. Very enjoyable so thanks to Jay.
    11a foxed me for ages, even with all the checking letters in. I must have stared at it for about the same time as it took to do the rest of the puzzle! Eventually the penny dropped!
    Thanks for the entertaing blog BD.

    If you’re going to tackle the Toughie make sure you have a dictionary to hand and Google fired up – unless you have a much larger vocabulary than me!

  8. Silky smooth cluing. Many thanks to Jay for setting a straightforward and satisfying crossword and to BD for the review.

  9. I took a long time getting into this today, and for a while thought I wouldn’t be able to do any of it. However, bit by bit, the words fell into place, and after a long pause for thought, including lunch, I was able to finish it with only a few of your hints, BD, so thanks to you and to Giovanni. I didn’t know that ‘dols’ was a word for Tories, and didn’t understand 5d at all, but would go along with 17a being Clue of the Day.

        1. I thought driving home that I should have said think ‘Big Dave’ rather than graven image!!!

  10. Enjoyable last in being 27a (so obvious) and 23a was my favourite. I am bracing myself for a challenging crossword tomorrow.

  11. I got one clue (24 across) – one flaming clue! Just not on Ray’s wavelength at all. Feeling as thick as pork chop mustard now I’ve been through the hints.

    Many thanks to all.

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