DT 26692 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26692

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26692

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

A couple of weeks ago I asked whether  having only two anagrams in a puzzle was a record. Well, if it was it’s been well and truly beaten today because this one has none at all. How refreshing! It does mean that we get a lot of charade-type clues but I’m not going to complain about that. Give us a comment with your views.
To see an answer just highlight the space between the brackets under the clue.

Across Clues

7a  Bank policy results in second job (8)
{SIDELINE} – a charade of another word for bank (of a river, say) and a synonym for policy or course of action produces a second job.

9a  Irish county team’s leader in Bordeaux (6)
{CLARET} – very often “x in French city” means that what’s needed is the French word for x, but not in this case. This Bordeaux comes in a bottle – it’s a county on the west coast of Ireland followed by the first letter (leader) of T(eam).

10a  Family doctor, initially helpful (4)
{KIND} – combine a word for family and the initial letter of D(octor).

11a  Remission of sins, a bishop’s answer (10)
{ABSOLUTION} – this ecclesiastical term for remission of sins is a charade of A, the letter used to identify a bishop on the chessboard and a synonym for answer or explanation.

12a  Sturdy cattle coming to yard (6)
{STOCKY} – an adjective meaning sturdy comes from a word for farm animals (including cattle) and the abbreviation for yard.

14a  Hearing about contrary central point of matter in court (8)
{TRIBUNAL} – put a hearing (the sort presided over by a judge) around a central point or essence which is reversed (contrary) to form a court.

15a  Keep terriers in check (6)
{RETAIN} – this is a verb meaning to keep hold of. Put the abbreviation for the body of troops known informally as the terriers inside a verb to check or restrain.

17a  Quickly secure photograph at college (4,2)
{SNAP UP} – a phrasal verb meaning to secure something quickly (before someone else can get their hands on it) is a charade of a photograph and an adverb meaning at college.

20a  Baffle scoundrel with dog (8)
{FOXHOUND} – a charade of a verb to baffle and a metaphor for a scoundrel or despicable person gives us a dog originally bred for hunting.

22a  In the shops, turn on the waterworks, causing a strong expression of public disapproval (6)
{OUTCRY} – in the shops here means released for sale so we want an adverb meaning available (often applied to a new book with a fixed availability date). Add a verb meaning to turn on the waterworks.

23a  Used to support factory worker (6-4)
{SECOND-HAND} – the definition here is used, in the sense of “not new”. Start with a verb to support or endorse and add a factory worker.

24a  Drive second towards flag (4)
{SPIN} – my first attempt here was “sail” (with flag a verb meaning to weaken) but that got a no-no when I submitted it so I had to think again. This is the sort of drive that people used to go for in the good old days when motoring was enjoyable and before a gallon of petrol cost a week’s wages. The abbreviation for second is followed by what a flag (on top of a stick in one of the holes) may be called on a golf course.

25a  Outlaw group’s Italian (6)
{BANDIT} – an outlaw is a charade of a group or gang and the abbreviation for Italian vermouth.

26a  Astronaut’s monicker is better read backwards! (8)
{SPACEMAN} – string together a more formal word for monicker and a verb meaning is better or surpasses, then reverse it all to make an astronaut.

Down Clues

1d  Senior nurse nursing home finds menacing (8)
{SINISTER} – a senior nurse goes round (nursing) the usual Crosswordland word for at home to make an adjective meaning menacing or disquieting.

2d  Skinny person’s tiny daughter (4)
{WEED} – this is a skinny person likely to have sand kicked in his face at the beach. An adjective meaning tiny precedes D(aughter).

3d  Page one, suggestive of plagiarism (6)
{PIRACY} – the abbreviation for page one is followed by an adjective meaning suggestive or risqué.

4d  Onion ring I fed child (8)
{SCALLION} – this is a mainly North American word for an onion with a slim bulb such as a shallot or spring onion. Insert (fed) a verb to ring or phone and I into a male child.

5d  Hearing piece produced by organ and wind instrument (3-7)
{EAR-TRUMPET} – this outdated hearing piece is a charade of a bodily organ and a brass instrument that has to be blown.

6d  Iron Lady’s felt hat? (6)
{FEDORA} – join together the chemical symbol for iron and a lady’s forename (Ms. Bryan perhaps) to make a felt hat with a brim.

8d  Artificial, some flowers at zoo (6)
{ERSATZ} – this adjective, borrowed from German, meaning artificial or fake is hidden (some) in the clue.

13d  Hear angry talk, then cues for actors (10)
{CATCHWORDS} – there’s a deceptive bit of misdirection here, with hear looking like it’s signalling a homophone. In fact we want an informal verb meaning to hear. Follow this with angry talk or disagreement to make cues for actors. I’d never heard this term used, but I think it specifically means the final words of a speech by another player, which an actor listens for and uses as a trigger to start speaking his own lines.

16d  Overwhelm in a Parisian court (8)
{INUNDATE} – a verb meaning to overwhelm or swamp is built from IN (given to you in the clue), “a” in French and a verb to court or go steady with.

18d  Irregular power worker (8)
{PARTISAN} – irregular is the definition here and it’s a noun rather than an adjective so we want a paramilitary fighter. The abbreviation for power is followed by a skilled worker who makes things with his hands.

19d  Plans to include large models (6)
{IDEALS} – put L(arge) inside (to include) plans or visions.

21d  Nothing different — always moving in a single direction (3-3)
{ONE-WAY} – the definition here is moving in a single direction. String together O (nothing), an adjective meaning different or unfamiliar and a, mainly Scottish, adverb meaning always. You can also read the whole clue as the definition so it’s a semi all-in-one.

22d  Disturbing experience in river in old Kentish town (6)
{ORDEAL} – this is a disturbing or distressing experience. Insert R(iver) between O(ld) and a seaside resort in Kent. I’m not sure why the clue says Kentish rather than Kent (perhaps the juxtaposition of Kentish and town is meant to make us think of an area of London near where I lived as a student?). When applied to people someone born to the west of the Medway is called a Kentish Man while someone from east of the Medway is a Man of Kent – since this town is well to the East I wouldn’t have thought it qualified to be called Kentish.

24d  Got rid of, the woman departs (4)
{SHED} – the past tense of a verb meaning to get rid of or cast off is a feminine pronoun (the woman) followed by the abbreviation for departs (as seen on a timetable).

The clues I liked best today were 22a, 26a and 21d. Let us know what you liked.

Today’s Quickie Pun: {MOAT} + {AWAY} = {MOTORWAY}

54 comments on “DT 26692

  1. Blimey Gazza, I’ve been trying to do this crossword since 08.00 (07.00) hours this morning. Are you sure it’s only 3*

    1. I think I must be a 2* solver! More spaces than not when I had to turn for help. I’d never have got 13d without the hints.

  2. I think I enjoyed today’s crossword, but some clues seemed a little bitty or contrived to me. A couple of very good clues though (26A and 18D in particular) but then I din’t like 19D or 21D very much.

    Guess I’m just a bit confused dot com after all my racing around doing the laundry/cutting the front lawn/going shopping/working yesterday

    1. No, you’re not alone in liking anagrams. I agree with Mary that they’re a good way in to a tricky crossword. Having said that, I enjoyed today’s offering and, until Gazza mentioned it, hadn’t noticed the absence of anagrams.

      1. I love anagrams, and a crossword just doesn’t seem right without them. Having said that, I did enjoy this puzzle, especially unravelling the tangle I’d made of the dog, scoundrel, actor intersection, but I got there with some of Mary’s perservation.

  3. A quick two stopper this morning. I had not noticed the lack of anagrams but there was still plenty of variety in the clues without them. Many thanks to the Mysteron for the crossword and to Gazza for the review – how can I tell that he is no longer distracted by the rugby :)

  4. Morning Gazza, I did notice there were no anagrams, how could I not, they are normally my ‘way into’ a puzzle, however, this goes to show that I don’t have to have them, I think I agree with the 3* , thanks for the explainations, I couldn’t see what ‘out’ had to do with ‘in the shops’ in 22a! also fell for ‘sail’ in 24a, fav clue today 22a, took me ages stupidly to get 2d! I enjoyed it mostly, in 9a how does the ‘in’ work? thanks for the hints etc. didn’t need them to solve but did to explain a few,

  5. Finished, with a lot of help from Gazza, for which many thanks. I thought that 6d and 16d were clever but in 18d how do we know the abbrevation for power

    1. All in all I found this a difficult crossword, with some abstruse clues, but that may just be the way that I look at them

  6. I found the RHS fairly easy, the left not so much. Exceptionally early for me to be doing it, but felt i needed a bit of a treat after like someone else last week having to have a fasting blood test, so no breakfast until 10 a.m.
    i also put sail first for 24a, then realised the error. i missed the anagrams, as I usually find them a good way of starting.
    An enjoyable crossword, though all the same. thanks for hints.

  7. Hi collywobs ‘p’ is just an accepted abbreviation for power, there are so many, I have a little book called Chambers dictionary of crossword abbreviations, it’s really helpful for things like that, because as you say how are we supposed to know what is and what isn’t acceptable?

    1. I’m putting this on my Christmas list. I often think I need an abbreviation but never know quite what is required!

  8. I thought that this ended up being a bit more difficult than I thought it was going to be to begin with. Lots in the bottom half took me a long time. I managed to finish it without the hints but thanks for the explanation of 24a – couldn’t see why a “pin” was a flag – not a golfer!! I hadn’t spotted the total absence of anagrams. Because I fell for the misdirection in 13d I didn’t really understand why it was what it was. Took a long time to see 21d. I liked 7, 22 and 26a and 2, 3 and 16d. With thanks to whoever set this one and to Gazza for the hints.

  9. I took the liberty to download 26692 from your site as I shan’t get my DT (Brussels version) ’til afternoon.

    Good puzzle – my faves : 9a, 14a, 23a, 24a, 26a, 1d, 4d, 8d, 16d & 18d.

  10. 2* difficulty for me and I didn’t even notice the lack of anagrams. Thanks to the Mysteron and Gazza.

    With regard to the seaside town being Kentish – if you get your mobile phone out on the beach there, you will get a message saying ‘Welcome to France’ :D

    I found the Toughie quite tough today (it’s the BEAMing Ray T) but Prolixic didn’t. Have a go and see which one of us you agree with.

  11. Couldn’t get ‘confound’ out my head for 20a and 13d was unsolvable. The blog was invaluable again in prompting a correct answer for 20a and then 13d was guessed from wordplay. Thanks to setter for a good stretch today and Gazza for the clues (cues?).

    1. I had confound in my mind as well, but as I didn’t think ‘found’ was a breed of dog, I knew I was on the wrong track. That whole section of the puzzle was the hardest for me as I really wanted to put ‘crosswords’ in at 13d. Got there in the end though.

      1. Also confused confound. Enjoyed the challenge, used all 5 “Help” letters, then needed a hint from Gazza to correct nautical fixation with 24a (used to be a yottie, so Sail and Drive connect), but should have remembered Sunday afternoons and father-in-law’s Austin 7 with its top speed of 35mph. Many thanks Gazza.

        1. Yes, 24a reminds me of ‘tootles’ down to the coast in Grandpa’s MG Magnette, top speed 60mph despite the two-tone paintwork and go-faster stripes along the side!

  12. A mixed bag today, more difficult for me than most of the last couple of weeks worth. I’d never have gotten 13D without Gazza’s assistance. And 15A… I’ve never heard “terriers” used in this way before, always been the “Terries” throughout my long military association (32 years now). I, too, was upset by the lack of anagrams, they usually provide my starting point.

  13. It was strange to have no anagrams. As Mary says, they are often the “way in” .But, there are a number of easy clues to get us started, eg. 22a, 26a & 21d. I didn’t, however, like 18d. I can’t see “irregular” as meaning “partisan”, however you look at it.

  14. Tricky………been out this morning so just getting started.

    From the comments, may take me a while as I like anagrams to get me into the puzzle, however, will be goof for me to try other types of clues!

    I am resisting looking at the blog until much later!

    Thanks to the mystery setter and to Gaza.

  15. Re 13D: my dictionary says “Printing, chiefly historical the first word of a page given at the foot of the previous one, below the last line”. This is a device to make reading out loud easier, in that you can be saying that word while you are turning the page.
    I loved 13D and 18D!

  16. There were no clues that I particularly liked today, but 22d did puzzle me with its odd reference to “Kentish”.

    I must say that I like anagrams, but didn’t miss them today.

        1. I live in Kentish Town, so I was pleased it got a mention, even though it wasn’t what the setter was driving at :-)

  17. Finding this very difficult today and really miss the anagrams. Am going to allow myself 2 peeks at Gazza’s hints and work on from there later tonight. This is the second day in a row I have found the crossword hard. How do the team members know they are definitely going to be able to solve each day’s offering? The pressure…..

  18. And as for the answer to 4d, I didn’t dare fill that in as I thought that was a term used exclusively in Ireland and not likely to be known beyond.

  19. With the help of these excellent clues I have finally completed this unpleasant puzzle. I found it no better than the last one this setter produced. I detest not having anagrams, they are my usual way in. I sincerely hope this is the last one this setter puts on the back page.

    1. Wouldn’t describe any puzzle as ‘unpleasant’. Not to one’s taste, perhaps, but am finding the lack of anagrams is actually good training for my brain to think in other ways, and to expand my knowledge of other types of clues.

      Thanks to the mystery setter and to Gazza.

  20. Found this one difficult – did it mainly in two “bursts” but needed hints to finally finish. Very aware of lack of anagrams as they are also MY “way in” quite frequently.Not sure I enjoyed it very much, I;m afraid!

  21. An fun outing today and I would agree with Gazza on the use of Kentish – but onlu because, being born in Chatham (to the Eaast of the Medway), I am a Man of Kent. Having said that I was trying to justify Oddham!. Thanks to gazza and to the setter.

  22. I found this one not too bad, except for the NW corner. However,talking about anagrams, do those of you who love them have favourite methods of solving them, without the use of electronics? I would be pleased to hear. I am still very much a beginner and don’t get the chance to tackle the crossword every day but I do read the blog. Many thanks to all for the useful comments posted and to Gazza and the setter. Today’s gave me a lift.

    1. I write the consonants in a circle with the vowels in the middle and then look for common letter patterns. I do resort to the online anagram solver if all else fails.

      1. Thank you, Kathryn – I will try that. I was beginning to think I would be “cheating” if I used the computer more than a little.

        1. I have come to the conclusion that using the computer isn’t cheating if it is helping me learn something. Quite often I know I have an anagram but I can’t sort the letters into something that makes sense so I use the online solver and this then can throw up new words that I find the meaning of and sometimes in the process I get the answer too!

  23. Thanks to The setter and Gazza for an unusual but enjoyable puzzle. I was beaten by 7,12,& 3, had to look them up, couldn’t even get them from Gazza’s excellent hints. Favourites were 6,26,&8, the last one was one of my Dad’s favourite words, which helped me get the answer.

  24. I did not notice the lack of anagrams, but then again, most of the answers went in without much contemplation.
    Thanks to setter for the puzzle, and to gazza for the review.

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