DT 26558 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26558

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26558

A full review by Gnomethang

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Morning All! It was nice to meet Cephas on Tuesday evening and I made the comment that puzzles don’t need to be hard to be enjoyable and this one is pretty much like that.

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1a           It protects one against a fall (8)
UMBRELLA – A gentle cryptic definition to start with, provided that you recognise a fall of rain!

6a           Bird that’s big at the fair (6)
DIPPER – A wading bird is cryptically alluded to by the Big Dipper or rollercoaster in a fairground.

9a           Cat, one in a hundred, shows this kind of energy (6)
ATOMIC – Place TOM (a male cat) and I for One inside A and C (one hundred in Roman Numerals). The result is the type of energy created from the fusion of nuclei.

10a         One under-employed in Cornwall (3,5)
TIN MINER – A cryptic definition of the type of underground worker typically associated with Cornwall.

11a         Harsh-sounding climate left burning (8)
METALLIC – A harsh sounding clang. Make an anagram (burning, an unusual indicator!) of CLIMATE and L(eft).

12a         What pitchers do in a field (6)
ENCAMP – A slightly off beat but valid verb meaning to set up camp or PITCH a tent in a field.

13a         On motorway, deplorable ‘undertaking’ leads to accidental killing (12)
MISADVENTURE – A charade of the old favourite motorway, M1, SAD (deplorable) and VENTURE (undertaking) to create a coroners death verdict that is accidental.

16a         Mill round copier, working in time for copy (12)
REPRODUCTION – The definition here is COPY and the wordplay caught a few people out because, I think, of the unusual anagram indicator ‘mill’. If you mill something (e.g. pepper) then you grind it up so it is actually an extremely good anagrind (anagrind is used on a lot of crossword blogs as a contraction of ANAGRam INDicator)!. Mill ROUND COPIER and then add (work in) T for Time to get the definition.

19a         Gold in large quantity seen in marsh (6)
MORASS – The heraldic term for the colour gold, OR, when seen inside MASS (large quantity) gives another word for a marsh or bog.

21a         Lock of hair — the last one sees of vermin? (4-4)
RATS TAIL – A nasty skinny lock of hair at the back of (usually a small boy’s) head is also the last thing that you would see of the rat as it runs away from you.

23a         Girl, our one, in a state (8)
MISSOURI – A gentle charade of MISS (girl) OUR and I for One leads to a US State.

24a         Nonentity’s murder alibi? (6)
NOBODY – A double definition. An inconsequential person and also what might halt a murder enquiry (although strictly speaking it would not really be a particular persons alibi).

25d         Disbar relative clutching drum (6)
BARREL – The large tun or drum is hidden in disBAR RELative.

26d         Vassals, fellows from Belgian city (8)
LIEGEMEN – Quite straightforward if you know the Belgian city LIEGE (or any of the MEN from there!). Liegemen were serfs or vassals, men bound to a nobleman or monarch.


2d           Blustering martinet drops in for material (6)
MATTER – A blustering anagram of MARTINET with the IN removed (correctly since the IN letters are contiguous in the clue) the result is material or stuff of any kind.

3d           Drink’s plonked on bar — short — in a Havana 6 down (5)
RUMBA – Another straightforward clue, particularly if you have solved 6d (DANCE) and have some checking letters. The regular crossword drink RUM followed by Bar (the last letter being removed (short) givers a Cuban dance.

4d           Boozer on other side limited to one place (9)
LOCALISED – An adjective meaning ‘limited to one place’ or the opposite of ‘widespread’. Yer boozer (pub) that you frequent regularly is your LOCAL. Add an anagram (other) of SIDE.

5d           Medicine made from insect venom? (7)
ANTACID – Another charade of ANT (insect) and ACID (venom or bile) leads to a medicine that aids indigestion.

6d           Trip over the floor perhaps (5)
DANCE – A nice cryptic definition for a dance, tripping the light fantastic across the dancefloor.

7d           Maybe Harry put on weight in college in America (9)
PRINCETON – William’s brother  (and William himself) are examples of a prince (Maybe indicates a definition by example – other princes are available!). If you place PRINCE above (ON in a Down clue) a TON (weight) you get one of the Ivy League colleges in the US.

8d           First lady starts reordering extra unendingly (8)
EVERMORE – a synonym for ‘unendingly’. EVE is the first lady on earth according to the Bible. Adding her to R – the start of Reordering, and MORE for extra.

13d         Duck near germs spreading (9)
MERGANSER – Another rare outing for this duck which is an anagram (indicated by spreading) of NEAR GERMS.

14d         Being in Exodus, briefly, first in this French translation (9)
EXISTENCE – Another charade for a noun meaning life or being. Take EX (the abbreviation for the book of Exodus in the Bible), IST for first, then EN and CE, the French words for ‘in’ and ‘this’.

15d         Email son ingredients for pudding (8)
SEMOLINA – A yucky, slimy pudding is created from the letters (ingredients) of EMAIL SON.

17d         Warm drink? Not usually (7)
CORDIAL – A very nice clue. Warm means genial or cordial but the cordial drink is usually mixed with cold water and ice.

18d         Theologian in the distance is halfway (6)
MIDDLE – Another outing for DD, the abbreviation for DIVINITAS DOCTOR, or a theologian. Place him inside MILE (in the distance) to get something that is halfway between both ends.

20d         Bony nutcase (5)
SKULL – A reasonably straightforward cryptic definition for the cranium.

22d         Story book to be imported by board (5)
TABLE – Place B for Book inside TALE for story to get a board.

Thanks to Cephas for this Saturday’s entertaining puzzle. I will be back next Saturday for our mystery setter.

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