DT 26631 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26631

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26631

Hints and tips by Libellule

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

Typical Rufus crossword this morning, however 1a and 8d as well as 2d and 19a seem a bit repetitive. Favourite clue? Probably 12d.

If you can’t get the answer from the hint just highlight the space between the curly brackets.


1. Save Father suffering with a soothing application (10)
{AFTERSHAVE} – An anagram (suffering) of SAVE FATHER is the sort of lotion that might be applied after you have had an 8d.

9. Trip that lasts some months in the US (4)
{FALL} – The American term for autumn is possibly another word for a stumble.

10. We may bet on them to give us hydrogen (10)
{GREYHOUNDS} – An anagram (to give) of US HYDROGEN is an animal we might see if we were going to the dogs.

11. Tips union leader to spend freely (6)
{UPENDS} –U (union leader) and an anagram (freely) of SPEND produces a word that means to turn over.

12. Cattle feed in lake (7)
{LUCERNE} – Double definition, alfalfa or a lake in central Switzerland.

15. Every set-back about it is instructive (7)
{TEACHES} – Reverse (back) SET and place it about a word that means “every one considered individually” to get a word that means imparting knowledge or skill.

16. He leaves Mohammedan chiefs for Indian monotheists (5)
{SIKHS} – Remove HE from Arab leaders to produce members of an Indian religion.

17. Cane provided by master (4)
{BEAT} – Double definition, to hit with a rod, or to defeat or subdue.

18. Article about a piece of land (4)
{AREA} – A (article) the abbreviation for in reference to, followed by another A.

19. Kill off new growth (5)
{SHOOT} – Another double definition, to fire a weapon or new growth on a plant.

21. Pitch of the roof? (7)
{ASPHALT} – Pitch in this instance is a petroleum by-product that can be used for waterproofing a roof for example.

22. Money that is needed for the club (7)
{BRASSIE} – A slang term for cash is then followed by I.E. (that is) to get an old type of golf club.

24. Descriptive of one who can’t settle (2,4)
{IN DEBT} – Or rather of someone who owes money.

27. Show it’s all true, strangely enough (10)
{ILLUSTRATE} – An anagram (strangely enough) of ITS ALL TRUE is to clarify or explain something by the use of examples.

28. In France we may show common sense (4)
{NOUS} – The French word for we is an English word for common sense or intelligence.

29. Preparation requiring land and labour (10)
{GROUNDWORK} – A word that describes preliminary preparation such as a foundation is made up from a word for earth followed by another word for toil.


2. Discharge with or without a gun (4)
{FIRE} – To sack someone or 19a a gun

3. Rarely seen part of the French president’s residence (6)
{ELYSEE} – Hidden between (part of) rarely and seen is the official residence of M. Sarkozy.

4. Advertising jingles transcribed on glass (7)
{SLOGANS} – An anagram (transcribed) of ON GLASS.

5. Head taking leave of haggard relative (4)
{AUNT} – Remove G from a word that means bony and emaciated to leave a relative who is the sister of your father or mother.

6. Guarantees two points to new users (7)
{ENSURES} – A word that means to make certain is EN (two points of the compass) followed by an anagram (new) of USERS.

7. A rousing outdoor performance (4,6)
{DAWN CHORUS} – The singing of birds at the break of day.

8. Narrow escape — from cutting it fine? (5,5)
{CLOSE SHAVE} – A close call or you might use 1a after performing the second definition.

12. They shelve their responsibilities (10)
{LIBRARIANS} – Their responsibilities are books.

13. Meeting of the hands due? Opt for a change, exhausted (7,3)
{CLAPPED OUT} – A four letter word for applaud followed by an anagram (for a change) of DUE and OPT.

14. Not quite enough to make the GI drunk (5)
{EIGHT} – Another anagram, this time of THE and GI produces a number that should you have one more it would indicate that you are drunk.

15. Heath Robinson’s heart beat (5)
{THROB} – Hidden between (heart) Heath and Robinson is another word for pulsate or pound.

19. Criticising roofing materials (7)
{SLATING} – Double definition, a severe reprimand or critical attack, or a fine grained metamorphic rock used for roofing.

20. Time and motive for crime (7)
{TREASON} – T (time) and the basis for an action is also a crime of treachery or betrayal. A very old chestnut indeed!

23. Feeling of grief in this way starts never-ending quarrel (6)
{SORROW} – A word for suffering caused by loss or despair
is constructed using a two letter word for “in this way”, then the last letter of never and finally another word for an argument.

25. Top singer back in Scotland (4)
{ALTO} – A voice between a soprano and a tenor is hidden backwards in Scotland.

26. Act as an agitator and get jail (4)
{STIR} – And finally another double definition, to mix something or a slang term for prison.

The Quick crossword pun: {Sioux} + (veneer} = {souvenir}

54 comments on “DT 26631

  1. I enjoyed this one today. I liked the hidden clues, but my favourites were 27a, and 12d.
    Thanks to Rufus, and to Libellule.

  2. Good morning LIbeluule and thanks for the review, because I put ‘on heat’ in at 24a, don’t ask me why!! I got in a bit of a mess and needed your help to sort it out,,I wonder how many men would say 1a is a soothing application
    :-) , though I like Rufus, this wasn’t one of my favourites and I didn’t really have a favourite clue today, still waiting for the sunny weekend we were promised here in West Wales, one of my sons birthdays today so off across the road for a pub lunch (inside) :-)

  3. One of life’s little pleasures on holiday is being able to cuddle up in bed with Rufus in the morning ;)

    Many thanks to our setter for an amiable crossword and to Libellule for the review.

    1. This has conjured up a vision that didn’t really go with eating my lunch. I can just see you both there in your stripy jim jams :D

  4. 1A is definitely not soothing. A quick splash on a freshly shaved face always causes me alarm!

    Very enjoyable this morning, perhaps a trifle tricky than the normal Monday fare, but good fun to work on.

    My favourite today HAS to be 12D, anybody who knows just a little about me would realise that the Librarian is one of my all time favourite (possible fictional) characters. OOK.

    1. I agree skempie, 1a is more of a shocking awakening than a soothing sensation! I wonder how many of us tried bitumen as an answer to 21a? My favourite today was 14d with 10a a close second! Good back page crossy really enjoyed it.

    2. For me it’s Corporal Cecil Wormsborough St John Nobbs! I’ve got “Snuff!” on pre-order…

        1. You’ll probably just get a bag of nuts and a seat in the front row of the cinema (Unless she is saving up for a mighty organ created by Berthold Stutley Johnson…..)

  5. I also thought that this was a bit trickier than is usual for a Monday. For some reason the two longish anagrams in the top left hand corner (1 and 10a) took me quite a while. Also, although I knew it wasn’t right, I got fixated on 18a being “acre” and just couldn’t see beyond that until I got 8d. Favourites today were 7, 12, 13 and 15d. Thanks to Rufus and Libellule.

  6. Libellule

    Could you explain 12a a little because although I’ve got it I don’t understand the cattle feed part

    1. If you look it up in your new copy of Chambers you should find that, as well as a lake in Switzerland, Lucerne means:

      Purple medick, a plant resembling clover, also called (esp US) alfalfa, valuable as fodder for cattle, etc.

      1. Tks BD I knew there was a reason to get the Chambers Dictionary I STILL HAVE TROUBLE WITH this bloody French keyboard. Can anybody tell I how to sort it out, those living in France that is

        1. Collywobbles –
          Ca depend…
          Without doubt, you are using an AZERTY keyboard (french) rather than QWERTY (english).
          1. What type of computer are you using it on? (Laptop, PC, iPhone, Cray?)
          2. What Operating System and Language? (Windows, MacOS, Solaris, HPUX, Mumps?) (French or English?)
          If you give me some info – I might be able to help.

          1. Thanks Libelulle, I am using an Azerty keyboard which came with my new French HP processor . The letters are all over the place compared with the qwerty keyboard and when I press a particular letter I get another coming up. The operating system is Windows Vista (I think). I’m using English (as far as I know)

  7. Really enjoyed solving today’s crossword. Mainly because I managed it without needing your hints Libellue. ( I often do and I am very appreciative of the help). My favourite clues were 12d and 7d, the latter being the last clue solved

        1. Answering the question took my mind off the vision of Prolixic and Rufus cuddled up together :)

      1. Fine, assuming you mean adult male voice. The clue doesn’t indicate either qualification.

          1. If it’s not an adult male voice then it’s not ‘top’ in any sense because treble or soprano would be higher. I just wondered why the setter bothered to put ‘top’ because it adds nothing to the reading and confuses the definition.

  8. I love Rufus’s crosswords and sense of humour – it’s a wonderful way to start the week – but it was a bit too ‘straightforward’ this morning.
    If we use the ‘solving times’ star system, I’m only on a one star for difficulty but certainly more for enjoyment.

    I thought 14d was wonderful.

    Thanks to Libellule for the review.

      1. Ah, yes, of course. I knew that, but I never think to pop over there. Thanks for the tip.


  9. Undoubtably just me but I found today’s a tricky little blighter that took two sittings to sort out. Never heard of a brassie, not one in my bag! Needed real help for 12d, clever misdirection.
    Best clue for me was 10a mainly because mine has just cadged my lunch!
    Thx to LIbeluule for the much needed help and to the setter for managing to confuse me,

  10. A nice start to the week. Am glad I don’t have to use 1a!

    Liked 22a, haven’t heard that term for many years, along with ‘niblick’, ‘spoon’ etc (all of my father’s generation, I should think!)

  11. Not a 1A user either. Thought this was a much easier start to the week than usual but enjoyable all the same.
    So pleased I have a Chambers and could sort out 12A!
    Many thanks to setter and Libellulle. Never knew that a French keyboard was different to ours. Is it sorted now?

  12. Usual cheerful start to the week from Rufus – many thanks.
    Faves : 12a, 7d & 12d.
    Met my late wife in Switzerland and she was a very special 12d.

  13. Gentle but enjoyable start to the week. Completed this afternoon at my local in less time than a pint.
    After an 8d if prefer a 1a – balm myself. No fave’s today. Thanks both.

  14. Shelves………. arg, or as Skempie says, “Ook.” Even with all the letters in I wanted to write “Libations” for some reason. Possibly because I want a beer.

    Otherwise nicely straight forward…….. now to the Toughie……
    ATOM!!!!! Please!! ATOM!!

    1. It’s Messinae tomorrow – who we haven’t seen for a while. Hopefully it will be a good ‘un!

  15. 28 across – fab Yorkshire word. Reminded me of my dad who often used to say “show a bit of ****” or “haven’t you got any ****?” My dad – Bythe Eckerslike lol xxx

  16. Thanks to Rufus and Libellule, I enjoyed this one a lot. Loads of clever clues, favourites were 12d & 22a. Must confess to using Brut for 1a, but wouldn’t call it soothing :-)

  17. Meetings followed by technology problems prevented me posting earlier. :( A nice start to the working week. 22a and 12d were the clues for me. As to 1a, it depends on the time of day, what I’m doing and the company I’m keeping. The current choice is between Taylor’s Bay Rum (weekends), Old Spice (working day), Chanel Egoiste (evening) and Van Cleef & Arpells Pour Homme (evenings with lovely ladies :)). Then there’s an assortment of miniature bottles of various “men’s fragrances” for travelling on ‘one-night-away’ trips.

  18. Re 1a : most aftershave lotions are not emollient but astringent!

    Very interesting to read the male comments on the subject!!

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