DT 26537 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26537

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26537

Hints and tips by Falcon

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

I presume that this one is by Jay, but I have to say that I didn’t derive as much enjoyment from it as I normally expect from his creations. It certainly seems to have a fair share of charades, together with a goodly dose of deletion-type clues – but lacks any real “Aha!” moment.

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 A Parisian wearing shoes shows off (7)
{FLAUNTS} – A French indefinite article contained in a pair of heelless American (according to Oxford) shoes produces a verb meaning parades oneself in an ostentatious way, in the hope of being admired.

5a Sound wood on a new item for collectors (7)
{ANTIQUE} – start with A plus the abbreviation for new and add to it a word fragment that sounds like a type of wood commonly used in furniture-making or ship-building to get something a collector might like to acquire.

9a Temporary work pass on the way (7)
{STOPGAP} – an abbreviation used to identify a musical composition plus another name for a mountain pass follow a common short form for a thoroughfare to give us a temporary way of dealing with a problem or satisfying a need.

10a Talk covering venue for carnival transport (7)
{CHARIOT} – this type of talk (nowadays often conducted online) about a large South American city famous for its Mardi Gras celebrations produces a type of transport that would have been found in ancient Rome.

11a Put a coat on and got drunk! (9)
{PLASTERED} – we need a word which is both a verb meaning spread thickly and and an adjective meaning inebriated.

12a Person abroad once apt to be relocated (5)
{EXPAT} – this person living or working abroad is a charade of a prefix meaning former and an anagram (relocated) of APT

13a Soldiers return wretched after end of conflict (5)
{TROOP} – reverse (return) a word used to denote inferior, humble or lowly and place it after the last letter in (conflic)T to obtain a group of soldiers, perhaps members of the cavalry

15a Order if based on evidence of trustworthiness (4,5)
{BONA FIDES} – this phrase meaning credentials is also an anagram (order) of IF BASED ON

17a People asking for northern paper in euros regularly going away (9)
{ENQUIRERS} – we are looking for a word meaning people seeking answers. To find it, we must insert a cardinal point plus two dozen sheets (or so) of paper into the odd letters of E(u)R(o)S (the even, or regular, letters having gone away).

19a Old-fashioned term ultimately applied to new seat (5)
{STEAM} – an apparently old-fashioned (but very British) term meaning old-fashioned (most often seemingly applied to supposedly antiquated technologies such as radio) is formed by applying the final (or ultimate) letter of (ter)M to the end of an anagram (new) of SEAT.

22a Offence caused by frost on top of car (5)
{CRIME} – start with the top of C(ar), which is still C even though this is not a down clue, and then add a thick, white frost to get an illegal act, the commission of which is punishable by law .

23a The vitality of a country with one million immigrating (9)
{ANIMATION} – a word that may describe the liveliness of cartoon characters (the ones on the big screen, not the ones in the newspaper) is a word sum of A plus another word for country into which we inject the Roman numeral for one plus an abbreviation for million.

25a Drain the insect bite? Difficult (7)
{TESTING} – the solution to this clue is difficult – or, at least, it is a word meaning difficult. Start by removing the contents of (draining) T(h)E and then add what is colloquially called an insect bite. In reality, the insect does not use teeth to inflict this wound, but generally something found at the other extremity of its anatomy.

26a Getting close to revolutionary in range (7)
{NEARING} – this word meaning approaching is an anagram (revolutionary) of IN RANGE

27a Indicates comments written by case of defence (7)
{DENOTES} – a word meaning ‘serves as a sign, mark or indication’ is created from the outer letters (case) of D(efenc)E followed by a synonym for comments, perhaps those written in the margin of a book.

28a Depressed with leader being dismissed and thrown out (7)
{EJECTED} – remove (dismiss) the first letter (leader) from a word meaning sad or miserable to get another meaning thrown out (shown a red card maybe).


1d Loud American with skin infection is a bit of a worrier (7)
{FUSSPOT} – someone who worries excessively, especially over trifles, could be a charade of the musical direction for loud plus another term for American plus an eruption on the skin or pimple.

2d Mainly outspoken during fuss getting fruit (7)
{AVOCADO} – this fruit, the main ingredient in guacamole, is formed by placing most (all but the last letter) of a word meaning expressing opinions or criticism freely and forcefully inside a synonym for fuss.

rather surprising to see part of the solution to one clue appear in the following clue

3d Nearly finish project when getting dark (5)
{NIGHT} – a somewhat antiquated term for near is followed by the final letter (finish) of (projec)T to give us that part of the daily cycle when “the sun don’t shine”.

4d Story of the Home Counties can be split into parts (9)
{SEPARABLE} – ironically, a word denoting that something can be taken apart is formed by putting together the geographical location of the Home Counties and a story which is realistic but usually made-up, intended to convey a moral or religious lesson.

5d A run on church fund ultimately bridged the gap (5)
{ARCED} – a simple charade of A plus R(un) plus an abbreviation for the state church in England plus the final (ultimate) letter of (fun)D seems to have produced an electric discharge across the space between two electrodes

6d Compromises wreck sad effort (5-4)
{TRADE-OFFS} – the definition here is “compromises” (a noun, as in agreements involving concessions, not a verb meaning scandalises) and it is an anagram (wreck) of SAD EFFORT.

7d Made a clever remark, having the right gear — but missing first (7)
{QUIPPED} – a verb meaning made a witty retort remains when the first letter is removed from another word for outfitted.

8d Lands in eastern America (7)
{ESTATES} – yet another simple charade in which a colloquial term for America (the nation rather than the continents) is appended to a cardinal point.

14d Tariff indicating penny on staple food — keel over (5,4)
{PRICE LIST} – this enumeration of charges is (guess what) a charade of an abbreviation for penny plus a food staple particularly associated with the orient plus a lean to one side (as with a ship)

16d Lack of knowledge of Geordie technology (9)
{NESCIENCE} – this formal term for ignorance or lack of knowledge is a charade of the geographical area where one would find Geordies plus a word that is perhaps colloquially applied to mean technology but which formally means “the systematic study of the nature and behaviour of the material and physical universe, based on observation, experiment, and measurement, and the formulation of laws to describe these facts in general terms”.

17d Went out across cape, seething with emotion (7)
{EXCITED} – one might get stimulated by inserting a C(ape) into a word meaning left or departed (or what the American Space Program would called egressed)

18d Showing a profit from tobacco? Wrong (5,2)
{QUIDS IN} – this very British term meaning well-off or in a profitable or advantageous position would, if numerated (4,3), be a breach of tobacco-chewing etiquette.

20d Favouring the few, for title is in dispute (7)
{ELITIST} – an anagram (in dispute) of TITLE IS gives us an adjective signifying favouring or creating the best, most important or most powerful people within society.

21d Ran a horse into the sea (7)
{MANAGED} – place A plus a broken-down old horse in the waters between Europe and Africa to get a word meaning was in overall control or charge of .

23d Article, for example, on one’s patronage (5)
{AEGIS} – Let’s squeeze in a couple more charades. In this one, a word meaning protection or patronage is a word sum of A plus a shortened form of the Latin expresion exempli gratia plus the Roman numeral for one plus S (from the ‘s).

24d A good primate’s celebration of God’s love (5)
{AGAPE} – You may be left open-mouthed to discover still another charade. In this one, we append a primate (one that comes from the jungle, not the one from Rome) to A plus a slightly better than “fair to middling” grade in school to get a theological term describing “Christian love, as distinct from erotic love or simple affection”.

My favourite clue today would have to be 18d. Not only is it a rather intriguing British expression that I had never before encountered, but I must say I had a bit of fun writing the hint for it.

The Quick crossword pun (my initial thought): {tutus} + {half} + {ore} + {relevance} = {tutus are for elephants}

… but apparently it is {two twos are four} – how boring!

29 comments on “DT 26537

  1. Thanks for the review, Falcon. I thought of you when solving 18d (which was my favourite along with 10a. Another fine puzzle from Jay – the SW corner took me about half of my solving time!. Thanks to you both.

  2. Another enjoyable puzzle from Jay, and easier than his last couple.
    I had a similar experience to gnomethang, where 3/4 went in very quickly, and then I had the SW corner left to complete.
    Thanks to Jay, and to Falcon.

  3. A good puzzle with enjoyable answers although I am sure someone will enlighten me on the connection between tobacco and money as in 18d.
    Thanks to Jay and Falcon.
    I am now going to press ‘Post Comment’ and await the ‘Gnomethang moment’

  4. no big problems today, steady workmanlike solving required. Must admit, I would have thought that ‘Put a coat on’ (11A) would have involved painting. Enjoyed 1A, 5A, 5D, 6D and 18D was my favourite too.

  5. Lots of good stuff today! I was caught out on 16d, never heard the word before, and needed Falcon’s hints for 5a, otherwise a bit of head-scratching got me there in the end. Thanks to Jay for a good puzzle and Falcon for the clear explanations

  6. I struggled to get started with this one probably because I was solving in a different location to usual. I don’t care what setters say, if 2d appears in one more cryptic crossword in the next few days I will scream. There is definitely a plot amongst them to get the word included as its been in lots lately. Thanks to Jay for the usual start to Wednesday, although I have no particular favourites, and to Falcon for the usual excellent review.

    Re the pun – stick with the elephants BD – they are much more fun. http://www.ledaschubert.com/_b_ballet_of_the_elephants__b__62964.htm

    I found the Toughie quite tough but it’s by Micawber so is full of fun, so give it a go but be prepared to fight!

  7. Fairly unremarkable today I thought. I spent more time trying to figure out what the Quickie pun was and still didn’t get there (for either of the two solutions offered). The fact that the relevant clues weren’t italicised in the paper didn’t help.
    For the record though, I prefer the elephant suggestion!
    Many thanks to Jay and Falcon.

  8. I thought that this was a great crossword – enough fairly easy clues to get going and then a whole load more that had me thinking for a while that I would never be able to finish it.
    16d took me a long time and then I remembered that we had ‘nescient’ quite recently (?maybe last week) and it was a new word for me then. Right at the beginning I was starting to look out for it being a pangram – wrong! I have never heard of 24d with this meaning – another to store away for future use.
    Lots of good clues – 1, 9 and 10a and 1, 6 and 18d. Favourite today was 25a.
    Thanks to Jay and Falcon.

  9. Falcon,

    in your hint for 1a, youve found an extra “A” that doesn’t belong.

    Another day not wasted. I’ve learnt a new word (16d) and a new definition (24d)

  10. I’m with Gnometang and Jezza on this one, a smashing puzzle with the SW corner taking most time. Thanks Jay and Falcon.

  11. I reckon that the SW corner was set by somebody else to the rest of it.
    Sadly, it took me ages to get 20D, because for some reason I thought that the word “title” had 6 letters in it, so I just couldn’t figure it out.

    16D was new to me too- despite being from Wallsend.

  12. Surprised myself today, finished without any help, however needed hints to explain 16d. Favourite being 18d. Thought pun in the “quickie” was excellent especially as no help was given by use of italics.
    Thanx to Compiler and Falcon.

  13. Not too tough today and fairly quickly came together. Nothing too exciting but I would have liked 16d to be something to do with nae sense! That would have upset the Geordies. I think we had nascent recently. Thanks to setter & solver.

  14. Late signing in today, one grandson to take home, one sick dog to vets ( different one ) dentists and vets must be the richest people in the country!! managed this in fits and starts but didn’t find it easy, too many charades and deletion clues and across clues that should have been down and vice versa, sorry Jay you caught me on a bad day!! Beautiful day here again today too nice to be inside so see you all tomorrow, thanks for the review Falcon :-)

    1. Poor you – nothing so distracting as a poorly dog/cat/daughter/mother etc (not necessarily in that order) Whenever I have these kind of problems our elder daughter always says “Mum, I think that there must be a bit of Border Collie in you!” ie you’re never happy unless everyone is rounded up and OK!! Do hope that sick dog is OK.

      1. Thanks Kath, apparently she has ‘caught’ Pseudomonas from Angel, she has it much worse, she is on steroids and antibiotics, back to vet on Sat!!

        1. Poor dog, One of my Boxers caught otitis once and I still remember the ear cleaning traumas that lasted about 3 weeks. In comparison bath time is an absolute doddle!!

  15. I found this really difficult. I probably only got about half way before resorting to the blog. Maybe I shouldn’t attempt the crossword after a lovely walk and a delicious picnic. The outing must have mellowed my brain too much!

  16. Did not enjoy this probably because for me it did not flow. Only 1* for enjoyment. Did enjoy 16D though.
    Thanks to setter and Falcon for the review.

  17. Having been ‘offline’ for 4 days as my’ wireless router died… I am now indulging in internet addiction…….help! Did not realise how much I use it :( Now feel very tecky to have got it all going again! Loved this puzzle as some were easy but others had me struggling and a few new words which I felt were right but had to look them up to see if they existed!

  18. I found this one very 25A! Took ages to get started and only managed 3/4 before seeking help.

  19. Hard. Much harder than the last few toughies???? … Maybe I’m just tired? Actually, looking back on it, there wasn’t really anything overly 25a, but it didn’t seem to click very well for me…

    Thanks to Jay and Falcon.

    Favourite clue: 16d (new word for me).

  20. This was a very good puzzle, well up to the usual Wednesday standard.

    I agree with Falcon’s comments about 1D/2D, but that’s a minor quibble. I wouldn’t be surprised if there had been a last-minute change there.

    In any case, good fun, and more of the same would be most welcome.

  21. Started this last night and thought it was very tough to start with, but gradually accelerated and finished SW corner in a rush with rested mind this morning. Thanks to Falcon for nice review and Jay for a fine test.

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