DT 26473 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26473

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26473

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

It’s a typical Giovanni today – entertaining, with some clues to make us think. Let us know how you got on with it!
If you want to see an answer just highlight the space between the brackets under the clue.

Across Clues

1a  Being controversial male, I celebrate on perch (10)
{POLEMISING} – this is a present participle meaning being controversial or engaging in disputes. Put M(ale), I and a verb to celebrate all after another word for a perch.

6a  Brave man tackled by the rogue (4)
{HERO} – hidden (tackled by) in the clue is a brave man.

10a  Orthodox and intelligent? Not bishop (5)
{RIGHT} – remove the initial B(ishop) from an adjective meaning intelligent.

11a  Someone standing at back of house? Frank is at the front (9)
{CANDIDATE} – someone standing, in an election for example, is made by putting AT and the final letter (back) of (hous)E after a synonym for frank.

12a  Gather nearly all the nuns before start of evensong (7)
{CONVENE} – all but the final T (nearly all) of a place where nuns live precedes the initial letter (start) of E(vensong) to make a verb meaning to gather.

13a  Mean person trailin’ around (7)
{NIGGARD} – this is a mean person or miser. Reverse (around) a present participle meaning trailing or pulling, but mimic the dropping of the final G.

14a  Seagull soars around for food (7,5)
{SAUSAGE ROLLS} – an anagram (around) of SEAGULL SOARS.

18a  I am having the means, given allowance in excess (12)
{IMMODERATION} – the definition is excess. Start with a contraction of I am and follow this with synonyms for means and allowance.

21a  A hundred ran — injured in stampede? (7)
{CRUSHED} – string together the Roman numeral for a hundred and a verb meaning ran or raced to form a past participle meaning squashed.

23a  Supposed condition of legionnaire or seaman, I suspect (7)
{AMNESIA} – this is an anagram (suspect) of SEAMAN I. Traditionally men (no women were allowed) joined the French Foreign Legion “in order to forget”. According to the old, and not very good, joke, when asked “To forget what?”, they would reply “I can’t remember”.

24a  Lack of energy could make for decline, no? (9)
{INDOLENCE} – an anagram (could make) of DECLINE NO.

25a  Picture that is wrapped around outside of periodical (5)
{IMAGE} – the standard abbreviation for that is (id est) goes (is wrapped) around the abbreviation of a periodical to make a picture.

26a  An absurdity not having cold food (4)
{FARE} – remove the C(old) from a word meaning an absurdity (or a humorous type of play) to leave a range of food.

27a  Irresponsibly makes professional sneer against friend (10)
{PRODIGALLY} – this adverb meaning irresponsibly or extravagantly is a charade of the abbreviation of professional, a sneer or taunt and a friend or comrade-in-arms.

Down Clues

1d  Quiet one heading naughty act to defraud author (6)
{PIRACY} – this is an act to defraud an author by using or copying his work without permission. Start with the musical abbreviation for quiet (piano) and follow this with I (one) and an adjective meaning naughty or risqué.

2d  Possible description of foot in story? (6)
{LEGEND} – this traditional story could, as (3,3), be a cryptic description of a foot.

3d  Holy pair maybe held at Richmond after disturbance? (6,3,5)
{MOTHER AND CHILD} – a pair (maybe holy), the holy one being the subject of countless religious paintings, comes from an anagram (after disturbance) of HELD AT RICHMOND.

4d  Win gold as the one taking over a mantle (9)
{SUCCESSOR} – the definition is one taking over a mantle (or, possibly, inheriting a poisoned chalice). It’s a charade of a synonym for a win and the heraldic term for gold.

5d  Bit of cotton in one type of fabric (5)
{NINON} – a lightweight silk fabric is concealed (bit of) in the clue.

7d  Time that’s black that can be removed from the record (8)
{ERASABLE} – an adjective identifying that something can be removed is a charade of a long and distinct period in history (time) and a heraldic term for black.

8d  It could make one ever so zonked going round party! (8)
{OVERDOSE} – a semi-all-in-one is an anagram (zonked) of EVER SO which contains (going round) the usual Crosswordland word for a party.

9d  Accusing one with position in cricket involved in pilfering (6-8)
{FINGER-POINTING} – this is a compound present participle meaning making an accusation against someone or identifying a suspect. Put a fielding position on the offside of the wicket inside a present participle (new to me in this sense) meaning pilfering or purloining.

15d  Manages to fill the top post and grows stronger (4,5)
{GETS AHEAD} – a phrasal verb meaning grows stronger or is successful could mean cryptically, as (4,1,4), manages to appoint a top person.

16d  Monsieur is leader in funny business (8)
{MISCHIEF} – the definition is funny business or misbehaviour. Start with the abbreviation of M(onsieur) and add IS and a synonym for leader.

17d  Son to go off and smoke (8)
{SMOULDER} – this is a verb meaning to smoke, like the embers of a fire (or a sex symbol). Start with S(on) and add a verb meaning to go off or decay (like John Brown’s body).

19d  Like ships making attack (6)
{ASSAIL} – a verb meaning to attack is a conjunction meaning like or similar to, followed by a word which is used to mean ships generally in the age prior to the introduction of steam.

20d  Only just see obstacle above (6)
{BARELY} – a diocese (see) in Cambridgeshire is preceded (above, in a down clue) by an obstacle or hindrance to make an adverb meaning only just and no more.

22d  Benefactor has name inscribed in entrance (5)
{DONOR} – put N(ame) inside (inscribed in) an entrance to make a benefactor.

I liked 11a, 13a and 8d, but my favourite clue today, for its simplicity, was 20d. Let us know what you liked in a comment.
The Quickie pun is {WHIRLED} + {FARE} = {WORLD FAIR}.

49 comments on “DT 26473

  1. Excellent crossword today – best of the week so far. Really had to put the grey matter to work. Had never heard of the answer to 1a but worked it out, loved the clues to 12a, 14a and 9d (and no, I don’t mind cricketing clues at all, in fact, lets have more).

  2. I certainly enjoyed this. In the main not so hard but there were a few that had me going for a while. Favourites were 20d (because I recognised the SEE first time of asking – Yay!) and 14a for the simple but pleasant surface reading. Thanks to Giovanni and to gazza.

  3. Morning Gazza, I found this really tough today and for me it was nearing a 4*, the word at one across, isn’t that the american form of it?? have finished without the hints but taken a long time and with a lot of help, fav clues 12a, 21a and 26a, for some reason today I found it hard to pick out the anagram indicators, no toughie for me today :)

    1. Americans would spell it with a “Zee” I think. New word to me as I only know this in a 13 letter format ie [“perch”- MIC “- I celebrate]. Discuss.

  4. Slow, steady progress got me there in the end. Definitely a few to think about, but I greatly enjoyed the challenge.
    Favourite clues 11a and 14a.
    Many thanks to Giovanni, and to Gazza.

  5. I enjoyed this much more than yesterday’s but got really stuck on the NW corner until the nuns in 9ac suddenly clicked! 9d and 14ac stand out as favourites. Even with all the crossing letters 1ac took me ages to find. Thanks Giovanni and Gazza.

  6. Another fun challenge by the Don!

    I did not have too many problems. My cricket knowledge is not enough to confirm 9d with certainty but sling sounds sound. 23a: is the condition typical in Legionnaire’s Disease or something like that? Or do the recruits in the Foreign Legion forget their past? I did not quite get the allusion. It would have worked for me without the legionnaire…
    Quibble with 10a: why would “right” be orthodox? The left can be just as orthodox…

    Favourite today 14: the fodder reads smoothly!

    Thanks, Giovanni & Gazza!

    1. Ouch! Got 18a and 9d both wrong!!! 18a with me ended -ATELY. Having been put 10a by Gazza, I now realize even I have heard of Ricky…

      Over to the Toughie, if time allows.

  7. I was trying to solve this at the same time as persuading my poorly computer that it wanted to work, but I think I solved it in an average time for a Giovanni. Thanks to Giovanni for the nice all round challenge and Gazza for the hints and pics.

    The Toughie is a Friday-level crossword but worth a go as its very enjoyable.

  8. Finished without resorting to the hints apart from needing them to explain 13 and 23a.
    I thought it was fairly hard but ‘doable’ because even with words that were new to me, such as 1a, it was possible to work them out and look them up – I don’t call this cheating – I call it learning!
    Lots of clues that I really enjoyed – too many to write them all – possibly 12 and 14a and 2, 8 and 9d (even though the last one is cricket) – would hate Gazza to be disappointed by the lack of moaning!! :grin:
    Thanks to Giovanni and Gazza.

  9. Wow tough one today, took me all morning on and off to complete it and I think 1a is an absolute stinker! What a way to introduce the crossword. :-(
    However, overall very enjoyable if making my brain hurt!

  10. Must have my stupid hat on today, really struggled with this one. so I gave it a 2. I had no idea that 27a was a word for irresponsible either.

  11. I thought this was a good Friday morning challenge from Giovanni with lots of good clues and more than a few to get you thinking. All very enjoyable. Favourite clues were 14a & 3d.

    One comment in the review about 3d – I thought that the maybe was indicating that the answer was not always a holy pair rather than being part of the anagram indicator.

    Many thanks to Giovanni for the crossword and to Gazza for the review.

  12. My favourite this week even though I it took ages to get 1a – nie clue once I figured out what it was all about but my favourite was 7d. Didn’t know the cricketing term but figured out the answer and then looked at hints to see why.

    Thanks to the two G’s – excellent day.

  13. Well that was fun in a masochistic sort of way. !a is a new word for me as is the interpretation for 27a. Still, no complaints, got there in the end.
    Thanx to all as usual.

  14. Very typically Giovanni and none the worse for being so. Without doubt the best cryptic of the week. Many thanks Giovanni and Gazza.

  15. This took me a bit longer than usual, but I thoroughly enjoyed it and managed to complete it with the minimum of help. Lots of good clues , my favourites being 14a, 2 and 16d. I didn’t realise that 5d was a hidden word (when will I learn!) so put ‘linen’, which made the finding of 1a even more difficult — those two were the last in. Many thanks to Giovanni and to Gazza, as always, for his explanations. :-)

  16. Re; 20d. How does ‘see’ relate to ‘diocese’ as indicated in Gazzas Hints. An explanation would be appreciated for future reference.

    1. “See” as in “Holy See”. It is from Latin “sedes” meaning seat, i.e. throne.
      The “see of Oxford” simply means the bishopric of Oxford. Ely being a cathedral city is a crossword stock-in-trade often indicated by “see”.

      1. Agreed that Ely is the most common, but I can remember Exeter and Ripon in the not-so-distant past.

  17. I enjoyed this today, although it did take me longer than usual to solve. Some very good clues, including 1a, 11a and 13a and 1d, 5d and 8d. And I always enjoy a cricket clue. 1a was my last in – it seems to have caused lots of us a bit of head scratching. Thanks to setter for the Friday fun and Gazza for the review.

  18. Less than a third. Feeling as thick as pork chop mustard. At least it will go with 14 across.

    Many thanks to Giovanni and to Gazza – have a good weekend all!

  19. Interesting xword today ! At first reading only solved a mere handful, but a later perusal fared better, 1a being the last to go in; got the wrong sex in 3d and “f” instead of “m” doesn’t work !! Lots of good clues, favourites being 12a 27a and 2d 7d and 16d. Thanks to Giovanni and Gazza for a really enjoyable Friday brain-user.

  20. Good stuff! Paricularly liked 26a, 2d and 20d. Must include 3d too, as it features Richmond, the Lass of which Hill I married. Thanks to The G Team.

  21. Jezza I think we did about 12 months ago i’m sure it was an Elgar.Todays puzzle very enjoyable i agree with Gazza concerning 20d sometimes the more concise clues are the best thanks to the two Gs.

  22. Excellent test to finish the week. Considered this to be a genuine 3* for difficulty.
    Top left the last to complete and overall it took a little longer than usual.
    Big thanks to the setter for this one and to Gazza for the hints.

  23. I knocked this one off in double quick time which is not usual for Don’s puzzles!
    Clues that I liked : 1a, 11a, 12a, 14a, 21a, 27a, 2d, 3d, 8d, 9d,16, & 20d.

    I did the previous two cryptics but didn’t comment as we have all been confined inside while the workers finished off laying plastic non-slip floors in the galleries of our apartment block. They let people who still work out at 08.00hours and that was it ’til 17.30 for us old seniors! So my DT was collected from the bookshop just before closing time.

    The galleries are now magnificent and the repainted spiral staircase is a work of art – also non-slip treated.

    They also cleaned up impeccably!

  24. Enjoyable crossword today, but for me not as good as normal for G. 1a was excellent even though it took me longer to slove than the whole of Wednesday’s puzzle. Unusually there were a few in here I didn’t like but the good ones far outnumbered them. 23a was v nice. Many thanks to G and g.

  25. Hello all. Checking in a bit late – have been on a ghost walk with scouts – the things you do for your children! Have started cw but finding it slow going – hoping this is just tiredness. Any After Eighters out there?

  26. 13a – I am sure i have seen a comment that it was not considred good practice to give an anagram clue where the anagram is not of the word but of a word with that meaning. Have I read that somewhere?

    1. Hi Margaret – welcome to the blog.
      You’d be right if it were an anagram (what’s called an indirect anagram) but it’s a reversal of DRAGGIN’ rather than an anagram of it.

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