DT 26584 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26584

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26584

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment **/***

We have a puzzle with a bit of an American flavour from a mystery setter today. It didn’t really grab me when I was solving it, but I did like it a bit better when I was writing the blog. Let us know your views in a comment.
To reveal an answer just highlight the space between the brackets under the clue.

Across Clues

1a  Hold up two drinks (7)
{SUPPORT} – a verb meaning to hold up or sustain is formed from two drinks – the first a small mouthful and the second a fortified wine.

5a  Gifted runner starts to long for undemanding legwork (7)
{SKILFUL} – the definition is gifted. Start with a runner that enables you to slide smoothly across snow then add the initial letters of the last four words.

9a  Consider returning fire with explosive device (7)
{EXAMINE} – reverse (returning) a verb to dismiss or sack and add an explosive device to form a verb meaning to consider.

10a  In conclusion, tree is chopped up and logged (7)
{ENTERED} – put an anagram (chopped up) of TREE inside a synonym for conclusion.

11a  Full of spirit? (9)
{POSSESSED} – cryptic definition of someone who is in the power of a (normally evil) spirit.

12a  End of plant in rake’s way (5)
{ROUTE} – insert the last letter of (plan)T inside a rake or dissolute man to make a way.

13a  Grows flowers I left (5)
{RISES} – drop (left) the initial I from some flowers to leave an intransitive verb meaning grows.

15a  Forces through support for American transport? (9)
{RAILROADS} – double definition. As a verb this means forces through a proposal or bill by applying pressure; as a noun it’s what North American trains run on.

17a  Reeds uprooted around pool came back (9)
{RESPONDED} – an anagram (uprooted) of REEDS goes round a small pool to make a verb meaning came back (with an answer, perhaps).

19a  Han initially left the mad alien subdued (5)
{TAMED} – this is an anagram (alien) of T(h)E MAD without the initial letter of Han.

22a  Gem right inside ring (5)
{PEARL} – put R(ight) inside a verb meaning to ring bells (in a church tower, say).

23a  Awfully nice chat with Latin specialist (9)
{TECHNICAL} – in the surface specialist is a noun but as the definition it’s an adjective. We want an anagram (awfully) of NICE CHAT followed by L(atin).

25a  Attack and destroy, overthrowing king by headland (7)
{ILLNESS} – this is the sort of attack which may make you seek medical advice. Remove the initial K (overthrowing king) from a verb to destroy or eliminate, then add a headland.

26a  Golfer might be doing this, grabbing head of mashie and chucking it down (7)
{TEEMING} – the definition is chucking it down (in a monsoon, perhaps). It’s what a golfer would be doing at the start of each hole around (grabbing) the first letter (head) of M(ashie).

27a  Please, is female held by lecherous man? Almost (7)
{SATISFY} – to get this verb meaning to please put IS and F(emale) inside a lecherous man (named after the Greek god of the woodlands and normally portrayed as part goat) without its final R (almost). This is our second lecher today!

28a  Leave scoffing small sweet (7)
{DESSERT} – a verb to leave or abandon contains S(mall) to make a sweet or pudding.

Down Clues

1d  Kipper tie for American (7)
{SLEEPER} – double definition – someone having a kip and what the Americans call a tie (i.e. a support for their 15a).

2d  Celebrates first of price increases (7)
{PRAISES} – the first letter of P(rice) is followed by a synonym of increases.

3d  Old and crooked, climbing tree (5)
{OLIVE} – this tree starts with O(ld) and that’s followed by a synonym for crooked or wicked which is reversed (climbing, in a down clue).

4d  Walk outside bound to be really appreciated (9)
{TREASURED} – the definition is really appreciated. Put a verb meaning to walk or step around an adjective meaning bound or certain (as in “it’s bound to rain tomorrow”).

5d  Rushed around rear of garden shed (5)
{SPEND} – to get this verb meaning to shed or give away put a word for rushed around the last letter (rear) of (garde)N.

6d  Solve printer worries with last bits of software — perfect (9)
{INTERPRET} – an anagram (worries) of PRINTER is followed by the final letters of the last two words to make a verb meaning to make clear or solve. I don’t like “worries” (i.e. the active rather than passive voice) coming after the fodder – printer isn’t worrying, it’s being worried.

7d  Phrase that’s suitable for babies’ tummies (7)
{FORMULA} – double definition – a form of words and the contents of babies’ bottles.

8d  Snakes next to lake — women don’t want them up their legs (7)
{LADDERS} – put types of snake after L(ake). Apparently not all women dislike them.

14d  Elbows — they’re linked to one’s arms (9)
{SHOULDERS} – elbows here is being used in the sense of to push or jostle. We want another verb meaning to shove which is also linked to the arms.

16d  Revealed to be charged with stealing article (9)
{INDICATED} – start with a past participle meaning charged with a crime and insert (stealing) an indefinite article.

17d  Returns copies jazz fan rejected (7)
{REPLIES} – a verb meaning makes an exact copy loses (rejected) a slang term for a jazz fan to leave another verb meaning returns or sends the ball back (well, Wimbledon is with us).

18d  Red ends of electrical wire seen in plug (7)
{SCARLET} – put the last letters (ends) of (electrica)L (wir)E inside a standard plug used to connect parts of an audio and/or visual system.

20d  Held in stomach in exiting contraption (7)
{MACHINE} – hidden (held) in the clue is a contraption.

21d  Editor comes up with part of puzzle — rejoice! (7)
{DELIGHT} – reverse (comes up) the usual abbreviation for editor and add part of a crossword puzzle (if you can’t get it look at the strapline for this site above).

23d  Attractive lid of turquoise on a pen (5)
{TASTY} – the first letter (lid, i.e. the top bit in a down clue) is followed by A and an animal’s pen.

24d  Demands massages by the sound of it (5)
{NEEDS} – a verb meaning demands or requires sounds like massages.

I liked 12a and 27a but my favourite clue today was 1d. Let us know what tickled your fancy in a comment.

Today’s Quickie Pun: {PROPHET} + {BASTE} = {PROFIT BASED}

46 comments on “DT 26584

  1. 1d was favourite for me as well. This was quite hard going to begin with but I eventually finished in a time that agrees with the 3-star rating. I wasn’t too fust with ‘worries’ either!.
    Thanks gazza, and thanks to the mystery setter.

  2. Can’t say I really enjoyed today’s puzzle. I’m not a great lover of the American version of our language at the best of times and to me there were too many references to it today. Having said that, I enjoyed 11A, 22A, 23A and 6D. Favourite was 21D.

    BTW Happy solstice all.

  3. I found this quite difficult – took a very long time to get started and ended up with two that I needed the hints for – 25a and 17d. I didn’t understand 27a to begin with – just couldn’t find the ‘lecherous man’ anywhere and then remembered the word. I’ve never heard of ‘scart’ but guessed and looked it up and would have wondered about ‘light’ for ‘part of puzzle’ if I had not found this blog and read the bit at the top! I liked 5, 11 and 23a and 1 and 24d. Thanks to whoever set this one and to Gazza for the hints.

    1. Well done Kath on getting so far with this one, I couldn’t even get half way without Gazza! It didn’t help either by putting support in at 1d instead of 1a! I had heard of scart but it didn’t help!

      1. Thanks. I get really irritated with myself when I do something like put the right answer in the wrong place – it just doesn’t help, does it (and you can’t even blame someone else!!)

    1. I struggled to get in to DT Puzzles for ages Liz. Try again. The Toughie took nearly as long to submit as it did to solve and I got in to both on the third time of asking.

        1. Me too – If I get in I’ll send you a PDF. Unfortunately I can’t even get in to see if there are any messages regarding the recent problems in the service.

    2. Well, I have just recorded the worst time for a DT cryptic to date (except for the time I forgot to key it in after solving on paper). The Telegraph Puzzles site is up to its old tricks, sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t. Looks like someone forgot to feed the hamsters.

  4. I’m impressed with anyone who even managed to start this one. Couldn’t solve a single clue! I agree with Domus, please DT not this setter again.

  5. 25a had me puzzled for a while. I reversed (overthrown) (king) LUD to give DULNESS (alternative spelling) but couldn’t reconcile it with “attack”. Also trying to fit TAC (“cat” rejected) into 17d was a challenge! It’s like when you have a tune in your head, you just can’t shake it. ;-)

    I dont feel that 17d works as well as it might. Neither did 14d appeal – there’s a big difference in the actions.

    I liked 5a and 26a.

  6. I found this very tough – I’d say 4* for me. Finished eventually without hints but hard going. I wouldn’t say I disliked the setter, I thought some clues very clever, but I think you’d have to get used to him/her. Many thanks to mystery setter and to Gazza for the review.

  7. I actually reached a point with this one where I was going to put it down and move to the Toughie, but I took a deep breath and managed to reach the end in a reasonable time. I too liked 1d but am, like others, not a fan of either 17 or 18d. Thanks to the Mystery Setter and Gazza too.

    The Toughie is a good one today so give it a go but be prepared to use all your cryptic cells.

  8. I’ve been staring at this for 20 minutes now, and can’t get a single clue.
    Where’s Seamus when you need him? :(

      1. Oh good – although I can’t help feeling a bit sorry for the mystery setter – he or she seems to be getting a bit of stick today – must be tough if you’ve spent ages compiling all those clues and then you get criticised.

  9. I must be in the minority, because I quite liked this one, and found it quite straightforward.
    My last one in was 7d; for a while, the only word I could think of was a brand of cigarette!
    Thanks to setter, and to gazza.

  10. Oh, didn’t like it today. Was not on the same wave length and even when I did get the word didn’t like the word play…can’t win them all Thanks to setter and gazza

  11. How wierd.. I found it relatively straightforward apart from 17d. maybe I was so charged with adrenalin after trying and trying to get online that my brain was working at fever pitch???? many thanks to gnomethang for getting a pdf copy to me! I did it on line but have not managed to submit it yet! :(

  12. Thanks Gazza without you today I would only have solved just under half of this, for me it was a definite ‘toughie’ worthy IMHO of at least 4* for difficulty! sometimes crosswords are tough but I still enjoy them this one wasn’t one! Good luck anyone who is still trying, it took me ages to get into ‘clued up’ today, maybe I shouldn’t have bothered :-(

    1. Taking your advice Mary and am not going to bother. Been busy all day sorting out a client’s BT broadband problems so not in the mood – rather watch Wimbledon.

  13. In contrast to yesterday, I found this one a hard slog – took ages to get going and I ended up resorting to the hints cos I was running out of time. But glad to know I wasn’t the only one. :-) Thanks to the setter, and to Gazza.

  14. I found this puzzle quite enjoyable. Favourites were 1d and 15a with 5a and 26 not far behind. I think mysteron setters should be encouraged so I say ‘well done’ to whoever compiled it.

  15. I enjoyed this crossword a lot.

    Whoever the setter is, I’d be very happy to see lots more of their work.

  16. Thanks to gazza and the mystery setter.
    Didn’t really like this one, just seemed too dull somehow. Struggled in the SW corner.
    Favourites were 5 & 27 across.

  17. I think that the setter is getting a bit of unfair stick – I really enjoyed the challenge. I fully agree with Gazza about the printer problem in 6d. Well done Gazza for an excellent blog and thanks to the mystery setter.

  18. Well I quite liked it, even if it was a bit ‘American’ in places. Some good clues and a nice start to the day.
    Thanks to the setter and Gazza.

    1. Agreed Pommers -it was certainly different and involved lots of letter finding and juggling but I thought it was a nice change of pace, if a little tricky.

      Favourite definitely 1d – I thought the answer was also quite a common English usage. I seem to remember Peter Alliss using the term to describe the front of some of the bunkers at Royal St. Georges – which we will get to see in about four weeks. Can Rory do it again……..?

  19. Haven’t had much chance yet to-day – am going to take IT to bed with me (what fun!) But what I have seen, I agree with most of the above that it’s a bit of a b*****. Thanks for the hints – very American, I gather – that may help a bit? Don’t normally like Tusdays anyway!

  20. It seems to be about 50% in favour and 50% against – for today’s puzzle. I would like to cast my vote in favour. Quite like Tuesdays – always something different!

    (However, Clue of the Day for me was 23a in the Grauniad)

  21. Poor crossword today. I’m only an occasional solver and needed help on a ton of very obscure clues this time. Not as enjoyable as usual.

  22. I agree this was quite tough in parts but rather clever once you got there – I liked 11a & 8d. I got rather confused with the wordplay in parts- eg in 19a I thought alien meant ET which letters were of course part of the clue. Similarly in 6d I took last bits of software to be re and the word” perfect “to be a verb indicating what I should do.

  23. I was out for most of yesterday so no had no access to the blog and therefore the hints so I have to admit that for the first time that I can remember I failed to finish. I like a challenge but bu##er a pantomime!

  24. I found yesterday’s difficult but I would NEVER criticise a setter because I admire their skill, and could certainly not do it myself! I have asked this question before- How do they do it?

  25. Not my cup of tea today. I was not in tune with the setter – I was more like Les Dawson playing the piano!!

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