DT 26541 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26541

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26541

Hints and tips by Libellule

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

I hope everybody is enjoying their bank holiday in the UK, no such luck in France. If a holiday falls on a weekend then we lose it. A typical Rufus crossword today, with a high anagram content. Of all clues, I think I liked 17a the most.

If you can’t work out the answer from the hint highlight the space between the curly brackets.


1. Uncomfortable proximity in stifling billets (5,8)
{CLOSE QUARTERS} – A situation of being uncomfortably close to someone or something could also describe a barracks that was lacking fresh air.

10. A pound fixed rate in Canadian place (7)
{ALBERTA} – A followed by LB (pound) and then an anagram (fixed) of RATE to get a Canadian province.

11. Painter out in sea-mist (7)
{MATISSE} – An anagram (out) of SEA MIST produces a French fauvist painter.

12. I left to start work (4)
{TOIL} – TO followed by I and L (left).

13. Furnaces where links can be forged (5)
{KILNS} – An anagram (can be forged) of LINKS.

14. Live ammunition? (4)
{SLUG} – A bullet could also be a gastropod.

17. Blissful state of cats? Yes, if groomed (7)
{ECSTASY} – An anagram (if groomed) of CATS and YES.

18. Final word of encouragement I love (7)
{CHEERIO} – A word for goodbye is constructed from a word for a shout of approval followed by I and O (love).

19. He doesn’t want others to bother him about tortuous clues (7)
{RECLUSE} – The usual abbreviation for “in reference to” (about) is followed by an anagram (tortuous) of CLUES for a person who lives in solitude.

22. Drink container — one included in new changes on tax (4,3)
{WINE VAT} – An anagram (changes) of NEW with I inserted, is then followed by a type of tax to give a large container capable of holding the fermented juice of grapes.

24. Out of work, one gets led astray (4)
{IDLE} – An anagram (astray) of I (one) and LED.

25. Aside given to an actor to speak? (5)
{APART} – A word meaning placed separately or to one side could also be if split (1,4) a role in a play or film.

26. A slight mark on the music (4)
{SLUR} – Printing – to blur or smear. Music – to glide over a series of notes smoothly without a break.

29. They get taken in by foreigners (7)
{EXPORTS} – The opposite of imports.

30. A gumboil no one treated leads to complaint (7)
{LUMBAGO} – An anagram (treated) of A GUMBO(I)L with the I (no one) removed is also a painful backache.

31. Reward of mature reflection (13)
{CONSIDERATION} – Double definition, Payment given in exchange for something or careful thought or deliberation.


2. Solicits for votes in the corridors of power? (7)
{LOBBIES} – A gentle cryptic definition that tries to refer to both the halls that can be found near the entrance to buildings and people who are engaged in trying to influence how politicians vote.

3. Quick, look right inside (4)
{SPRY} – A word that means active or nimble is made using a three letter word for observing something secretly and closely with R (right) inside it.

4. Meet the requirements and make a reservation (7)
{QUALIFY} – Double definition, prove capable, or to moderate or restrict.

5. Girl able to turn up on a whole lot of dates (7)
{ALMANAC} – A girls name (e.g. Cogan) is then followed by the reversal of a word meaning having the ability to do something is also a yearly calendar that gives information on events etc.

6. Two similar bits of tulle for a ballet skirt (4)
{TUTU} – The first two letters of tulle twice…

7. Specialist in stock-taking? (7)
{RUSTLER} – An oldie but goodie, the sort of person who would steal cattle.

8. Ablest recruit transferred to warship (6-7)
{BATTLE-CRUISER} – An anagram of ABLEST RECRUIT is also a large capital ship that was built in the first half of the 20th century.

9. It was frightful, as a rule (5,2,6)
{REIGN OF TERROR} – September 5, 1793, to July 27, 1794, a period of violence that occurred after the start of the French Revolution for example.

15. Number get a fever that’s ill-defined (5)
{VAGUE} – The number is the Latin numeral for five, followed by a fit of shivering or shaking produces a word that means lacking definite shape or form.

16. Be on a wild binge (5)
{BEANO} – An anagram (wild) of BE ON A is also slang term for a party.

20. Song that once charmed Ulysses (7)
{CALYPSO} – A sea nymph who delayed Odysseus on her island, Ogygia, for seven years is also a type of music that originated in the West Indies.

21. Dope and sex orgy gets uncovered (7)
{EXPOSED} – An anagram (orgy) of DOPE and SEX for a word that means its time to get a super injunction.

22. Point to barrel-shaped singer (7)
{WARBLER} – Take W (West – a point of the compass) and add an anagram (shaped) of BARREL to get a songbird and a Toughie setter.

23. A burning issue may arise from it (7)
{VOLCANO} – Etna would be an example.

27. Bloomer in which a pupil is to be found (4)
{IRIS} – Double definition, a colourful flower, and a circular structure in the eye surrounding the pupil.

28. Time to come up for discharge (4)
{EMIT} – Reverse “Time”.

The Quick crossword pun: (sultan} + {pepper} = {salt ‘n’ pepper}

43 comments on “DT 26541

  1. A very gentle but pleasant start to the week from Rufus. Thanks Libellule for the review and Rufus for the fun.

  2. The usual gentle start to the week but after the weekend I have had, that is no bad thing! Thanks to Rufus for the nice start to the week and to Libellule for the review.

  3. Enjoyable, but reasonably straightforward today. Just out of interest, can anyone expand on the relevance of ‘mature’ in the clue for 31a?

    1. Toadson,
      I took this to mean – “mature reflection” was the equivalent of the answer i.e. worked out fully by the mind.

  4. Pleasant start to the week and a fairly quick solve. No particular favourites or answers to cause any contention.
    Thanks to setter and Libellule for the review.

  5. Nice start to the week. Bike calling, sunshine all the way.
    Thanks to Rufus (up spirits!) and Libellule.

    1. Just did twelve miles down the north side of Tyne, passed what was Swan Hunters shipyard, very desolate, I wonder if it will ever open again in my lifetime, sad.

  6. Thank you to Rufus and Libellule.

    Favourite clue today: 9d

    Very quick solve for me, so will have a go at the Toughie as well.

    Enjoy what looks like being a delightful day, everyone.


        1. WOW! Thanks for that… I never expected to get that on-line. I do like Rufus’ work very much, just a little easy today – should be harder on a Bank Holiday because we all have more spare time!


          And thanks for the Smiley notes – how does everyone know them? Surely it can’t be from asking on forums…

  7. Didn’t have time to even look at Friday or Saturday crosswords and failed miserably yesterday so a relief to know that the cryptic bit of my brain is still working! I wasn’t terribly sure about 14a as it seemed too easy and I wondered if I was falling into a carefully laid trap. Liked 1, 17 and 19a and 8, 9 and 21a. Hope that everyone has a good bank holiday.
    Thanks to Rufus and Libellule.

  8. Nice start to the week – thanks to Rufus and to Libellule for the review.

  9. As everyone above has said, gentle, but pleasant.
    Thanks to Rufus, and to Libellule for the notes.
    Clear blue skies here, but a little too windy for a garden siesta.

  10. A gentle but pleasant start to the crossword week. Easier than yesterday’s quickie which yielded me only 10 points from Cluedup. Still don’t know 2 or 3 of the answers. :(

    1. Mike,
      Just ask… i.e. what were the clues.
      I wonder if anybody has noticed recently that the Sunday Quick can be very difficult to get started, some of the clues are so nebulous you can come up with half a dozen answers, then you have to try and fit these answers with another multitude of answers… with the other Quicks generally, you tend to have a couple of clues that you know are right when you get the answer. This gives you a way in to the puzzle.

        1. I think I need a better theasurus. Nice to know that I’m not the only one struggling on a sunday.

      1. Thought it was just me. Help me please Libellule with 12a 22a and 13d

          1. Many thanks for that.I would never have got those in a month of Feb 29ths. :P

        1. Stock – definition 30 of 40 in Chambers: A stiff band worn as a cravat, often fastened with a buckle at the back

  11. Thanks again to Libelulle and Rufus, once again done in fits and starts one or more of the grandsons seems to be around all the time! roll on start of school on Wednesday, :-) fav clue today 12a and 22d, thanks for the hints Libelulle needed a few to finish

  12. The usual gentle start to the week from Rufus – thanks.
    1a, 19a, 22a, 26a, 4d, 9d, 22d & 23d were best for me.
    7d is becoming a chestnut!

  13. Just the job on a day off. 7d has appeared so often in DT recently from different setters. Sunshine continues gloriously…sleep inducing. Thanks to both.

  14. Needed a few of the hints, but it all fell into place quite nicely before spending a fair chunk of this beautiful day on the river.

    Thanks to Rufus and Libellule.

  15. Lots of nice clues today, but if I had to pick a favourite I think I’d go for 22d. Would’ve finished a lot earlier if I didn’t have to escort Mrs Tub and her mother to various garden centres. You’re pretty much guaranteed a cake on these trips, but you do have to earn it by lugging around 300 bags of compost. Thanks to the setter and Libellule for the tips.

  16. Loved it because I could finish it. An all too rare event and when I can it makes my day! My thanks to all those that post here for all their help over the years.

  17. 26a – I thought that the answer was a synonym of slight rather than anything to do with printing.

    1. Michael – I agree with you (snub not printing). That’s how I read it anyway.
      But having looked in the dictionary I see it could be either – although I’d never come across the printing definition before!

  18. Bit of a quick solve to-day, that was – bodes ill for the rest of the week, in my experience!! Needed hints to check 20d – seemed it could only be what it was but am definitely lacking in Greek mythology!

  19. Easy today, so didn’t need any hints.

    How odd to have 2 answers in the quick crossword the same as 2 in the cryptic.

  20. A nice enjotable start to the week and my return to Spain. I love Rufus – I can do ’em! – so many thanks for this. And you too Libelle for a great review.
    “Fiesta” here in Spain today, which is most unusual. Like France if a holiday falls on a weekend then we lose it but for some unknown reason we’ve had one today!
    Please can we have our sun back? We took it to the UK with us for our visit and seem to have left it there! It’s rained nearly every day since we got home!

    1. Pommette, watching the footie from “Nou Camp” or is it “Camp Nou”! Very wet!

      Please can we have our rain back?

      1. Had an interesting day of hot sunshine and torrential thuderstorms! You’re welcome to have the rain back, I’m supposed to be tiling the courtyard wall!
        Replying on pommette’s behalf as she’s just dropped a glass of fizz over her keyboard! Might have a blog tomorrow without pictures!
        Football now 1-1 so the fat lady isn’t singing yet.

  21. No, hang on- 29A is clearly “emigres”.
    It’s a much better answer than the one used, but it makes 20D difficult to say the least.

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