DT 26654 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26654

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26654

A full review by Prolixic

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

On the basis that the Saturday setter rotates between Cephas and another setter (whose name is a closely guarded secret), this week’s prize puzzle was by Cephas.  Sadly Gnomethang is not as regular as Cephas.  He has been burning the midnight oil at both ends and is unable to review the crossword.  I have volunteered for the happy task preparing this review.  Gnomethang promises that the light at the end of the tunnel is just around the corner and he should be back on duty next week to review this coming Saturday’s crossword.

I found this to be an enjoyable crossword with a good range of clues.  There was nothing to difficult to unravel in understaning the clues.  The only unknown (to me) word was the plant in 5d but the word was easily found from the wordplay.


1a Windbag Ali does a shuffle, playing by the rules (3-7) LAW ABIDING – A phrase meaning play by the rules is an anagram (does a shuffle) of WINDBAG ALI.

ARVE Error: need id and provider

6a Weightlifter is a card (4)
JACK – A double definition for a playing card and something that can lift a weight.

10a Old coin Romeo found in butter (5)
GROAT – An old coin comes from putting the letter R (Romeo in the phonetic alphabet inside an animal renowned for butting GOAT.

11a Accept responsibility for advance that’s sterile (4,5)
COME CLEAN – A phrase for accept responsibility for comes from a word meaning advance followed by a word meaning sterile.

12a Not one chain of mountains but another (8)
PENNINES – A chain of mountains in Italy as the initial A removed (not one) to give a range of mountains (?) in the North of England.

13a Sham attempt back in vehicle (5)
BOGUS – A word for sham comes from a word for an attempt GO reversed (back) inside a public service vehicle BUS.

15a Stiff spanner found in hovel (7)
STARCHY – A word for stiff (that may be applied to shirt collars comes from a word for a spanner ARCH  (something that spans) inside a word for a hovel STY.

17a A paper turning socialist in parts (7)
ASUNDER –  A word meaning parts (as in divides) comes from A with a popular daily paper SUN followed by a word for a socialist RED reversed (turning)

18a Pull out old pamphlet (7)
EXTRACT – A word meaning pull out comes from a prefix meaning old EX followed by a word for a pamphlet TRACT.

21a Irksome Edward promises to pay (7)
TEDIOUS – A word meaning irksome comes from a diminutive form of Edward TED followed by an word for promises to pay IOUS.

23 Initially four of you entered residential hall (5)
FOYER – A word for a hall comes from the first letters (initially) of Four Of You Entered Residential.

24a Dial, unhurried (4-4)
LAID BACK – A phrase meaning unhurried comes from a description of LAID if you were to reverse it.

27a Treatment that is exclusive (9)
OSTRACISM – A cryptic definition of treatment that excludes other people.

28a ‘Give balm’ included among phrasal verbs? (5)
SALVE – A word for give balm (as in sooth) is hidden (included) inside phrasal verbs.

29a Fusses over drink (4)
SODA  – A word for a type of drink comes from a word meaning fusses ADOS reversed (over).

30a Likely to happen at a whist drive? (2,3,5)
ON THE CARDS – A phrase meaning likely to happen could be somethign that happens during a card game.


1d Register round trademark (4)
LOGO – A word for a trademark comes from a word meaning register LOG followed by the letter O (round).

2d A room we converted in Aussie test venue (7)
WOOMERA – The name of an Australian test venue for rockets and bombs comes from an anagram (converted) of A ROOM WE.

3d Do not declare staff (5)
BATON – A word for a staff could (if split 3, 2 mean not declare in a game of cricket BAT ON.

4d Need cycle to tour, disregarding the French modesty (7)
DECENCY – A word for modesty is an anagram (to tour) of NEED CYCLE after removing the final LE (disregarding the French).

5d I am seen cultivating brightly-coloured flower (7)
NEMESIA – This brightly coloured flower is an anagram (cultivated) of I AM SEEN.

7d Repaid old cleric inside (7)
AVENGED –  A word meaning repaid (as in getting retribution) comes from a word meaning old AGED with the title of a cleric VEN inside.  Ven is the short form of Venerable that is the title given to archdeacons.

8d Family’s irritable, going around grand station (5,5)
KINGS CROSS – This station, the London terminus of the East Coast main line comes from a word meaning family’s KIN’S with a G inside (going around grand) followed by a word meaning angry CROSS.

9d Stuck in an area of hard water (8)
ICEBOUND – A cryptic definition of something stuck in frozen (hard) water.

14d Flies goods over part of London (4,2,4)
ISLE OF DOGS – This part of London is an anagram (over) of FLIES GOODS.

16d President locks maiden in prison (8)
CHAIRMAN – A word for a president comes from a word meaning prison CAN round a word for locks HAIR and an abbreviation for maiden M.

19d In Coventry St Edward had a rendezvous (7)
TRYSTED – A word meaning had a rendezvous is hidden inside Coventry St Edward.

20d Not like misguided fantasist? (7)
TOLKIEN – An author of works of fantasy such as the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings is an anagram (misguided) of NOT LIKE.

21d Win by playing his trump after South passes (7)
TRIUMPH –  A word meaning win comes from an anagram (playing) of HIS TRUMP after removing the S (south passes).

22d Regarding the eyes, holding sense initially of kissing (7)
OSCULAR – A word meaning of kissing comes from a word meaning regarding the eyes OCULAR around the first letter of sense (holding sense initially).

25d Crude bachelor’s in charge (5)
BASIC  – A word meaning crude comes from the abbreviation for bachelor’s BA’S followed by the abbreviation for in charge IC.

26 Last character Susan bowled over, being divine (4)
ZEUS – A word for a divine being of Greek mythology comes from the last letter of the alphabet foliowed by the diminutive form of susan (SUE) reversed (bowled over).

4 comments on “DT 26654

  1. Clued Up has this morning reached a new low. I logged on at the first attempt so was full of hope. However, on clicking print, I got clues but no grid, and the clues are for crossword number 0 dated Thur 1 Jan 70. Is there any way we can find out what’s going on, as my emails are no longer being answered and I feel that the Telegraph has washed its hands of the site.

    1. Now it’s worked, and I’ve got today’s crossword, but the question still remains. What on earth is going on?

  2. Many thanks to Prolixic for covering at very short notice. After a cosy little 4 hour sleep I drove to Monmouth from Kent and played a terrible round of golf. More tomorrow !.
    I hope to stop inconveniencing fellow bloggers as opf now.
    I am also, to carry on Prolixic’s analogy, going to get at least half alight!

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