DT 26498 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26498 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26498 (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.

Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”.

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


1a    Garment that is worn out (8)
This garment is worn out-of-doors in cold weather

11a    See closure get complicated (10)
The See or diocese 20 miles south of where I live is an anagram (complicated) of CLOSURE GET

17a    Manipulate engineer going to dance (5)
A word meaning to manipulate or rationalize is a charade of the Royal Engineers and a lively dance with leaping movements

29a    Not a neat development to comment on (8)
An anagram (development) of NOT A NEAT gives a word meaning to comment on


2d    Some Central European capitalists (8)
These people come from the capital of a Central European capital

7d    Small ship’s restricting to composer (6)
Put an archaic word for a small ship around (restricting) TO and the result is a Hungarian composer

20d    Goes round by way of Spanish city (7)
An anagram (round) of GOES and a word meaning by way of give this Spanish city, north-east of Madrid

25d    Last character had performing bear or another animal (5)
The last character of the alphabet is followed by an anagram (performing) of BEAR to get another animal

The Crossword Club is now open. Feel free to leave comments.

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

The Quick crossword pun: {did} + {jerry} + {doo} = {didgeridoo}

143 comments on “DT 26498 (Hints)

  1. This was a YeeHaa puzzle which I managed to hold on to till the end. The clues were great the answers fair and overall was a real rollercoaster. All over far too quickly unlike yesterday which I tried to make last as long as possible.
    Fav clues 11a and 7d.
    Thanks to Big Dave and the Compiler.

    1. I agree that on the whole the clues were great and the answers fair. It was most enjoyable. The only clue I found disappointing was 2d. Did anyone else think that 2d is not really a cryptic clue because there isn’t a second way of deriving the word?

      1. Hi Foray – welcome to the blog.
        2d is a cryptic definition. The setter wants you to think that capitalists here are advocates of capitalism.

  2. Morning Dave, completed 3/4 or just over without any ‘help’ but had never heard of 12a or 17a or 7d so had to look those up, strangely enough when I looked at this first thing I could only do one and it took lots of perservating to get there! Fav clue 22a, didn’t need the hints today but thanks as usual :)

    1. Mary.

      I started slowly, had never heard of 12a, and liked 22a best too. Always a surprise to see the one’s own opinion almost exactly stated in the comments…

      Thanks to the Setter and BD for the review.


        1. I was going to put a link on the forum for those who have never heard of 12a before to show some photos from Northumberland showing how it was collected but the link included the answer. But if anyone would like to see the photos. Go to google type in the answer (as one word) and add “ers” at the end. The first answer takes you to some nice photos taken in the 80s at Lynemouth. Don’t see them anymore since the major —–eries have closed.

          1. AAh but if you havent a clue what the answer is you cant google it!! Im really stuck HELP

            1. steph, 12a – I thought I had the right answer, but I have just followed the instructions from “akap” above re: Google – I must have the wrong answer! Help!

              1. Having read Gazza’s comment above – I did have the wrong answer – all is now explained! I thought the first word was “jet”!

  3. A reasonable Saturday crossword, I thought. For those who do both the cryptic and the quickie, there are a couple of links between the puzzles from yesterday and today. Liked 21d, the novel in 8d was new to me. I’m sure I have the right answer for 28a, but can’t fully justify it. Thanks to BD and setter.

      1. 28a Tenant that may come after owner where rent’s not paid (8)

        Put the answer after owner and you get someone who doesn’t pay rent.

  4. Much easier than recent Saturday puzzles IMHO, but fair and balanced. Didn’t pick up toadson’s link with yesterday, but both today’s grids are pangrams, which helped me to solve the Quickie. Thanks BD and compiler – is it the regular Saturday Setter?

    1. On the subject of the Quick crossword, there are three valid answers for 24 down but the online site only accepts the one that completes the pangram.

      Also, I was held up by 6 down as technically the clue is in the singular and the answer in the plural. As with a number of other words the plural has become acceptable as singular by prolonged incorrect usage.

      1. So the correct answer for 24d can be proved by knowing the puzzle is a pangram. I’d not really seen the significance of that before. I presume the three answers you had in mind start with B, L, or H? Could there not be a fourth starting with C? – a triangular protuberance from an arch. (Discovered by use of an ‘electronic aid’, I must admit!).

  5. A very enjoyable Saturday cryptic which didn’t take long to solve but has lots of things to make you smile as you go along. Thanks to, I presume, Cephas. Unlike the rest of you, I get to enjoy it all again doing the review later on today or even tomorrow as it’s so lovely and sunny here that it’s too good to be indoors at a computer.

            1. ………and there’s my sister in law raving about springtime temperatures in New Mexico of low 70s !

              1. Not too hot here today either – temp at 15c (about 59f) and it’s grey and overcaast again

                1. Our sun has gone now – the mist is creeping back across the marsh. And I had to bring three loads of washing in as the “man” next door (not what I referred to him as at the time!) had a very large acrid smoky bonfire which was blowing all over my lovely clean clothes.

                  1. Mmmm I had one of those next door last week, had to shut all the doors and windows on a lovely day!

  6. Sluggish start but once the “Full English” kicked in I was off like a stabbed rat. Most enjoyable in my book. Thanks to the setter & to BD for the hints which I did not need on this occasion.

  7. Enjoyable workout after I had seen the error of my old ways on 3d. Good variety of clues to establish a foothold. No doubt a golden oldie but I liked 16a across for simplicity and 1d for misdirection. Thanks to all.

  8. A great puzzle to end the crossword week; beautifully and fairly clued. Thanks to setter and BD for review

  9. Another Gosh. Just needed a little help with 5 clues. It didn’t push any buttons for me, but I’ll pick 7d as my the favourite where I learned about small ships in the process. Always thought 20d was a guitarist rather than a place

    Thanks to setter and BD for hints and geography lesson, for some reason I thought you were west of 11a …

      1. Maybe … Thanks for sending the sunshine and can we keep it a bit longer? My elder daughter is coming to stay for a few days (which means a massive dust-removal operation is required on Monday, what joy!).

        1. I offer two helpful theories – if you spray polish around, people will think you have polished and (b) if your kettle is clean and shiny, people imagine that if you have time to clean your kettle like that, then the rest of the house must be sparkling too! Not saying it’s my method of housework, just advice I was once given :D

          1. As I don’t clean – fullstop – unless we have visitors coming, I like you 2 tips. Must adopt them in the future.
            If you tried to keep a house in Spain free of dust you would be at it 24/7.

              1. Before I go off to clean the bathroom, I offer one more hint – if you have a lot of people coming round, don’t both to clean the floor because no-one will be able to see it, and you only have to clean it again after they have gone!

                Not sure what all the footie and rugby fans who normally post on a Saturday afternoon will think of all this household stuff, but they might learn something useful!

          2. The other one is that if your house is in a bit of a mess just leave the hoover out and then anyone who pops round will think that you’re just about to clear up!!

            1. This one I really like. And were I to leave the hoover out, maybe a daughter would do it for me !!

              1. What a cunning plan! However in my experience it tends to be the other way round ie I go to visit one of them and end up doing the hoovering!!

    1. The place in 20d is NW of Madrid. It’a an ancient city with beautiful cathedral (the last Gothic cathedral built in Spain ) and an alcazar (royal palace).
      Re the guitarist – I saw him perform at the Manchester Free Trade Hall In Oct 1984 when he was aged 91. He didn’t have the lightning speed over the fretboard that he once had but he was still amazing to watch!

  10. It 6d 14a that this was a pangram and completed it in quick time. Favourite was 4 and also liked 9 12 13 18 and 28. 26 reminded me of my sojourn in Oz earlier this year when they really lived up to their name. I had better not say too much or I will score a 4 and be 27 again. Thanks to the setter for an interesting puzzle.

  11. A gentle but satisfying Saturday puzzle. There is still plenty of 12a to be seen here on the Northumberland coast, especially at Newbiggin and Lynemouth. Thanks to setter and BD

  12. I hadn’t realized it was a pangram till I read the comments -duhh. Finished it without too many problems and there were quite a few “kick yourself” moments once the light had finally dawned. I liked 8d – memories of Eng Lit as school. It is absolutely chucking it down in Barcelona today and forecast to do so for the next few days. Our normal sunshine has obviously moved north. Thanks to BD and the setter.

    1. We had heavy rain yesterday Kate – dried up today but still grey and cloudy and cold.

  13. Having read crypticsue’s comments in the past, I know that she and her husband also attempt the Telegraph General Knowledge crossword and I don’t think that she’s going to have many problems with that either. I thought that the cryptic puzzle was very gentle – unlike the reception which awaits the Irish in Cardiff this afternoon. Is your seat booked in front of the television, Mary?

    1. No unfortunately Cara I will miss most of the game! But I like Ireland and don’t mind if they come second! :)

      1. OK, I’m now off to get a large slice of humble pie. The wrong French team got off the bus

  14. If you have solved this one, the quickie and the General Knowledge, I can highly recommend today’s NTSPP by Qix. There were only two clues where I had to read them out loud to Mr CS and Son No 2 (home from London for a week) to get the answer

  15. Another tough Saturday, managed about half so far. Absolutely no idea about 12a or 17a or 4d, any help would be much appreciated.

    1. Hey Barrie I was stuck on 12a & 17a too

      4d its the kind of mistake made on a football pitch ansd also a personal target

      1. Hi Mary and Barrie
        12a Second word is something that you might use as fuel (I wouldn’t as we burn logs) First word is a large expanse of water
        17a First two letters is the usual abbreviation for an engineer followed by a three letter dance as in “Irish …” whole word meaning to manipulate.
        Do hope that I’m not going to be censured!!

    2. 12a, a four letter word for black stuff, think of fires, preceded by something that is blue 3 letters and its not the sky, to give you something found on the shore

      17a you ned a 3 letter word for dance preceded by the crossword abbreviation for engineer to give you a word for manipulate

      Hope that helps

        1. I have edited your first hint to remove the word that is actually found in the solution :)

      1. Thanks Mary, I got the second word because it was the only one that would fit the letters I had got and it was black but the first word has got me foxed. Can’t for the life of me think of anything blue with * as the middle letter, shame as it’s the only clue left and to be beaten by a three-letter word is most annoying Grrr!

        1. Ah I think I see it but not something I have ever come across before, would it burn, wouldn’t it be too wet, I know our oceans produce all sorts but never heard of it producing this sort of fuel before. You live and learn Eh!

  16. Agree with whoever it was who said (Digby, I think) that this was much easier than the last few Saturdays have been.
    Got a bit messed up briefly in top left hand corner by getting the first two letters of 3d wrong, thus also messing up 1a.
    I’ve only ever seen the small ship in 7d spelt with a “Q”.
    Favourites today include 9, 11 and 22a and 8 and 21d.
    Beautiful sunny day in Oxford and quite warm – off to finish cutting grass for the first time this year.
    Thanks to the setter and to Big Dave.

  17. Apart from a little confusion in the NW corner (caused by having the first 2 letters of 3d incorrect), nothing too troubling today.

  18. Enjoyed today’s CW and I managed it without too much of a blog from pommers. Re 7d as a sailor I’d only evr come across this with a ‘que’ at the end. You live and learn!
    Thanks BD for the blog (which I didn’t need) and setter for a nice workout.

      1. According to Wiki it can also be spelt with a ‘c’ too – originating from Greek, via Latin and giving its origins to both the Spanish & Italian words for boat. Told you – learn something new every day.

  19. Good afternoon fellow cruciverbalists. I have been elsewhere for the past two days and have found the last couple of challenges strangely difficult – obviously I have not been quite tuned in. Just when I was doubting my ability to get this crossowrd done I zipped through today’s offering waiting for my dry cleaner to open.

    Frankly there was nowt in this to write home about and I expect others found it rather easy too.

    Beautiful weather here in Hertfordshire – I can almost smell the approach of the cricket season.

  20. My first mistake was 1a – I immediately pencilled in the type of garment one wears when it’s raining! No mistakes after that, but needed the eraser on the end of the pencil to correct 2d & 3d!

  21. BD, I’ve noticed your editing of the word “better” in today’s introduction (Strikethrough). Does this give us any indication at all about your opinion of this puzzle?

  22. any hints on 14a and 15d , have been looking at these two clues for over 1hour and still cannot make hed nor tail thanks.

    1. Presumably you have all the checking letters from the across clues for 14d. If so insert a vowel and then look up the result in the dictionary. If you split the answer 1, 4 and then look up the second bit, you will understand the “ruin” bit.

      15d is another word for an order (think military!) plus A and the abbreviation for the second set of books in the Bible.

    2. 14a – There are two ways of looking at this; An activity that the photographer would have performed, and also what you say when something (especially personalities) are successful, or fit well together.

      1. Sorry about the confusion with the 14s. My eyesight is obviously deteriorating faster than I thought!

        1. Thanks BD – On reading the first few words of your reply, I thought I was about to be castigated!

  23. Fantastic last ten minutes in Rome where Italy have beaten France!! We’re all set now for Wales to beat Ireland and it’ll be a perfect day.

    1. Why do we all hate the French when it comes to Rugby and football? Their ‘smug’ attitude?

    2. I can’t believe that the last Welsh try was given. I also cant believe that the Irish didnt put the ball outside for a try in the 80th minute!.
      Well done Italy!

      1. The Welsh try was a tiny bit fortunate wasn’t it? It was all down to the Scottish touch judge who is an international referee – I’ve always thought that the touch judges for internationals should be men who do that role all the time, rather than referees who very rarely do it. Still, Wales are still in with an outside chance of winning the 6-nations.

        1. Notwithstanding whether the ball they used was the correct one, the Welsh players knew that if the ball was given to them by the ball boy then they couldn’t take a quick lineout. They should be cited for cheating.

          1. Players can only be cited for an act of foul play deserving of a red card. If the officials had judged that Wales were not allowed to take a quick throw-in, the referee would have stopped play and made them have a proper line-out, but Wales would still have had the throw-in.

              1. Is cheating acceptable when you can’t win by fair means? I thought that Rugby Union was above that. It’s not sour grapes as I don’t support either side.

                1. Unfortunately Dave, especially in soccer I think, anything goes these days and as you say Rugby Union is above that, so I don’t think there was any ‘cheating’ involved yesterday, of course Wales now having an outside chance in winning six nations could change everything :) good game to watch today, unfortunately I will be in cinema with 4 grandsons!

  24. On reflection 8d was rather clever. Have just survived a 9 year old birthday party. Need a quick lie down!

    1. Suggest a cold compress and a glass of champagne. Always makes me feel better no matter what the problem.

  25. I had a 50/50 choice for 1a and inevitably picked the wrong one which slowed me down in the top left corner, but apart from that I whizzed through it. I think the trick is not to get distracted by the list of jobs Mrs Tub keeps threatening me with. Thanks to the setter but on the whole I think Big Dave was probably right to score through that all-important word in his intro.

  26. Help please! I completed the crossword without having to refer to any of the hints and was feeling rather clever! then I saw you talk about a “pangram”. When you are able to, can you let me know what this means? I guess you might not be able to until after the closing date so I await with baited breath!

      1. Thanks! I thought it meant one of those where the letters down spell a word (if you get my drift)!

        1. I suppose the clue was when 20a, 7d and 17a went in – don’t often see those letters!

  27. I completed this one in a faster time than usual after passing over a lot of the across clues on the first cut but finding them a lot easier second run through.14a, 13d and 19d were the best clues for me.

  28. This is my first time and I am being driven mad by 8d even though I have all the checking letters and 14d in spite of earlier comment. Can anyone help, please?

    1. Welcome to the blog Hilltop

      8d Resent having to ask Barnaby (8)
      A word meaning to resent is a charade of to ask (3) and the surname of the eponymous hero of a Dickens novel

    2. 14d Large number ruin fashion (5)
      The large number is a Roman numeral – follow it with a word meaning to ruin or demolish to get a fashion or fad

      1. Also, if these are the last clues to go in, remember the earlier discussion.

        All of the letters of the alphabet appear at least once in the grid.

  29. I’ll join the after 8 club then. Acoule of clues held me up in the SW corner but I got here OK in the end. Thans to Cephas and BD.
    Looking out for England in the 6 Nations tomorrow – it will be nice to simply beat every team!.

    1. Hi – welcome to the after 8 club – don’t seem to be many of us around tonight. We’ve just had supper and are about to go to bed so that, hopefully, we won’t get up too late tomorrow – lots to do!
      Thanks for correcting me last night about the Saturday setters.
      Sleep well and hope that you enjoy whatever kind of game England is playing in the 6 nations tomorrow! Have a feeling it’s probably Rugby but could easily be wrong!!!


  30. Interesting looking at the comments above. Very little about the clues/answers so guess most people had no trouble with this one. Different from many recently (Saturdays) so would not hazard a guess about the setter. I found it interesting to solve also. I usually get it corner by corner and often one takes much longer to go in. First run through on this one I had a balance throughout the puzzle and plenting of checking letters. Penny dropped about the pangram after one or two unusual letters although that knowledge did not help me to solve. Last to go in was 2 down. I was trying to be more complicated and thinking Eastern Europe and funny combination of letters. Penultimate to go in was 9a. No real favourite clues.

    1. Wanda,

      I thought we had the same avatar there for a min.

      Are you my better looking twin sister?

  31. I enjoyed this one. Needed some help from a musician friend in the pub for 7d and the various assistance given above for 12a which I’d never heard of.

    As a rugby nut I’m a bit miffed with Wales. The Hooker and Philips must have know what they were up to. Not acceptable, but then the touch judge could not possibly have know which ball was being played as the original clearly ended up in the crowd, a howler on his part, so no blame attached to the ref.

    On the subject of this afternoon’s game, as an exiled Scot, I absolutely fear the worst! I might have to watch it from behind the settee like I used to do with Dr Who when I was a kid!

  32. Finished at last… I had a worry with 28a for no reason whatsoever! My favourite clue was 8d! In the post as usual. Thanks to Big Dave and

    setter as usual.

  33. First time poster so apologies for any breaches of etiquette. Query on 3D. Cannot work out why the first two letters are “About” and not “A former partner”. Or have I got 1A completely wrong?

    1. 3d Withdrawal of old type of engine (10)
      The definition is withdrawal – first two letters are defined by “of” as in “concerning” and the rest give an old old type of engine.

      I don’t know what you have for 1 across, but there are usually a few “gimmes” in my hints – hover over the picture and you will see what I mean!

      1. Can see what it’s”about” now, I was using the “old” to give me “former partner” . All serene, I had 1A correct after all.

        Thanks, good site by the way, now firmly bookmarked for the times I get the clue but don’t know why – 28A a prime example on this. Knew it had to be that word but couldn’t get the word play until I read one of the hints above.

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