DT 26726 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26726 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26726 (Hints)

The Saturday Crossword Club

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As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, an assortment of clues, including some of the more difficult ones, have been selected and hints provided for them.

Don’t forget that you can give your assessment of the puzzle. Five stars if you thought it was great, one if you hated it, four, three or two if it was somewhere in between.

Could new readers please read the Welcome post before asking questions about the site.

Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions.


1a           How Red Arrows fly — low-down (11)
Split as (2,9) this is how the red arrows fly – on its own it means low-down or facts

11a         Cleese top comic in shower of stars (9)
An anagram (comic) of CLEESE TOP gives an instrument that shows the stars

18a         Harmonic apparent on single (8)
This harmonic is a charade of an adjective meaning apparent or evident and a single

27a         See trailers — perhaps with these (5)
A charade of a two-letter word meaning to see and trailers, perhaps for movies, gives what may be found in the kind of trailers that are towed by vehicles

28a         Harry kept me working in very big shop (11)
An anagram (working) of HARRY KEPT ME gives a very big shop


2d           From Orion a direction opposite the zenith (5)
Hidden inside(from) two of the words of the clue is the  point of the heavens diametrically opposite to the zenith

5d           Mrs Simpson allowed to set up message (8)
Start with a charade of the name of Homer Simpson’s wife and a word meaning allowed or permitted the reverse the lot (set up in a down clue) to get an old-fashioned message – remember when these used to be delivered by a Royal Mail motorcyclist?

7d           Fixed seat with unsound piece of wood having got men in (6,7)
This seat in Parliament that where the choice of MP was typically in the hands of one person or family is constructed from a word meaning unsound or inferior followed by a piece of wood, typically one still growing on a tree, into which some men or soldiers (the ones that are not officers) are inserted

22d        Device to bind up hay without a motor initially (6)
To get this device or symbol start with a word meaning to bind up hay, drop the a (without a) and add M (Motor initially)

25d         Cross sea-dog losing head (5)
This adjective meaning cross or annoyed is created by dropping the initial letter from (losing head) a sea dog or buccaneer

The Crossword Club is now open.  Feel free to leave comments.

Please don’t put whole or partial answers or alternative clues in your comment, else they may be censored!

The Quick crossword pun: {scrip} + {triter}  = {scriptwriter}

60 comments on “DT 26726 (Hints)

  1. Fairly straightforward for a Saturday I thought EXCEPT for 22d which is driving me insane. Help! Even with all the checking letters I can only make one word which is what Chambers describes as “a symbolic device but what has that to do with hay?

  2. Ref: 7d. Understand the “unsound piece of wood” but where does the “got men in” fit in the answer.?

      1. Sorry BD missed your hint. I always forget the abbrev for men/soldiers who are not officers. All clear now, thanx.

    1. Hi Geoff I had to google this one, you need a 6 letter word for reputation over a two letter word for applied to or about, hope that helps somewhat, not finished yet so back to the grind, hard today I think

    1. Welcome to the blog Leanne

      8d To have casual affairs outside Middle Eastern country is sensible (8)
      The definition is “to have casual affairs” and it only applies to men! Outside a Middle Eastern country put a word meaning sensible or shrewd

  3. Giving up on this for now, cannot get second word in 7d despite hints, also stuck on 23a and 19d, 8d 16a, 20a 21d!! Oh dear, is it me or is this a tough one today??

    1. 8D capital of ME country is Muscat (used to live there) if that helps – thanks for the help with 15 but need the tip of queen elizabeth school to get it – never heard of it. 21 D type of dog is I do not think a specific type more any mongrel type that goes after rodents hope this is OK on the hint scale

    2. Hi Mary – no, I don’t think it’s you – I thought this one was a real stinker. I enjoyed it but thought it was REALLY tough.

      1. So did I .. only just finished! Still not sure why the answer to 26 a is correct? (I think it must be).

        1. Forget that – have just seen the comments below about the anagram indicator. I suppose some days you just can’t ‘see’ them!

  4. The sun isn’t up over there in the USA, but this seemed easy for a Saturday. Perhaps my brain has been stimulated by the warmth.

  5. Hello everyone. I quite liked today’s puzzle, a mixture of interesting & easy. Having gone to school at Queen Elizabeth School at 15d I’d like this anyway. I agree that 22d caused me a few problems. I did like 11a, 27a and 25d.

  6. Found todays’ difficult++. Best clue for me was 23a. Needed explanation for some aspect of clue 7d (See 2* comment). Thanx to Compiler and BD for the hints.

  7. This was not too difficult but most enjoyable. Favourite by a mile was 11 – clue of the week. Now back to yesterday’s Toughie which is looking like a load of old cobblers.

  8. Unlike other posters to date I did not much enjoy this, having finished after a bit of a struggle to understand several of the answers once Lady L and I had actually got them. Why is ‘Get’ needed in 12a? I cannot explain my answer to 17d and I don’t much like its final definition. We got 22d eventually but had never heard of the verb in question. 7d was resistant to near the end, but is fair enough.

    1. Agree with 22d and 7d – they were the last in for me too. And also that “Get” in 12a seems superfluous. 17d is an anagram involving 2 of the first 4 words in the clue (OK, BD?)

  9. Finished at last, only one I really liked today was 1a, thanks for hints Dave but found it difficult even with them, surely no one says the verb in 22d just ***ing?

  10. Despite my advancing years, I wasn’t familiar with the answer to 7d so thank you for the hint, Dave. I was late starting the puzzle today because I had to post a card to South Africa – the last day for posting to South Africa is Monday 5th – and paid £1.65 for the privilege… A Hallmark Ecard wouldn’t have cost me anything! It’s farewell to Shane at 14.30 [Wales v Australia] so I shall have to get a few jobs done before then.

      1. A fairytale ending for Shane, with yet another try, but Australia were undoubtedly the better side, Mary.

        1. They were better but as a good welsh girl I was so pleased Shane got the final try. What a way to go :-)

  11. I have FINALLY finished this one – I thought it was very difficult. Needed the hint to understand 22d. Have never watched “The Simpsons” so was completely flummoxed by why 5d was what it obviously had to be. I was very held up by 11a as I decided that the answer had to be a word coming from the adjective to do with stars but couldn’t make that work and then saw it. Also completely missed the anagram indicator in 26a – that was just plain stupid!! Not a fan of SF and missed the anagram indicator in 4d too. I liked 14 and 24a and 8 and 15d. With thanks to the setter and BD.
    Hope that everyone has a good weekend. :smile:

  12. Always satisfying to finish a prize. Thanks to BD, especially for 22d. Particularly enjoyed 7d.

  13. Thought this was about the right level of difficulty for the Saturday prize puzzle. I smiled at 11a and 5d (which I did without reading the blog), but hated 22d which was the last but one for me, before 27a which I found just poor! Don’t understand 26a either. I was helped with 15d by passing through it 6 times a year going to and fro to uni in the days before the M5.
    Thanks to compiler and BD.

  14. Still stuck on 16a :am I the only person not to have got it; no one else has mentioned it ! Have all the checking letters, I think.

    1. 16a Piece of information about tool returned for renovation process (8)
      Put a piece of information around the reversal of a tool used to smooth metal or wood to get the kind of renovation process favoured by women of a certail age.

      My research tells me that Detective Sergeant Joe Friday in Dragnet never said “Just the ****s ma’am”!

      1. Thanks, have it now, but don’t get the reference to Joe Friday : there was a clue in last week’s Sunday Times which I didn’t “get” either. It referred to Joe, it was apparently not a baby kangaroo but a GI.

  15. Only just had time to do this after a hectic day with lovely visitors, and I don’t know whether I am tired or just because I am starting 8 hours later than usual but I found it more difficult than other Saturdays. Thanks to the setter and BD too.

  16. A good Saturday challenge – tougher than usual – 22d being the sticker for me until the Eureka Moment kicked in.
    27a was my favourite.

  17. Is there really such a verb for 22d (where if you lose the a and put an m on the end you get a a device)? It sounds likely, but my dictionaries fail to list it.

    1. The unwritten (or perhaps it is written) rule with Telegraph puzzles is that if it is in The Chambers Dictionary (aka on here as the Big Red Book / BRB) then it’s ok – and that goes for abbreviations as well.

      1. Many thanks BD. I think I need to invest in another dictionary – since my OED and Collins don’t list this word. Is there a particular edition of The Chambers that you would recommend?

  18. Tough today – but some nice clues! e.g. 24a

    Do we have to have snow for the next few months? Not good for my eyesight!

    1. Agree with the snow comment. I suffer with black floaters and have to say I find the white ‘floaters’ annoying and distracting. Guess I’ll have to give this site (no pun intended) a miss until after the snowy season.

  19. I cannot believe that nobody has mentioned 15down – I just left it blank. Whilst there were plenty of good clues here (I really lifed 1A) this one gets back to BD’s Proper Noun beef – and rightly so in my book.
    Thanks otherwise to the setter and to BD for the Hints.

  20. As usual had to finish this on Sun morning – did enjoy it but have a question about 10a. Surely the “man fighting” is not just endless but is also missing the starting letter too?

    Thanks BD and setter.

      1. Thanks for that! 10a could be only one thing but I forgot endless could refer to both ends! What a difference from last Saturday which was a quick romp. Starting with 1a I thought this one was going to be easy also but there it ended. Got them without hints but I needed to check in Chambers and felt that general knowledge was needed! Missed the anagram in 26a and thought that 16a must be makeover which slowed me down! Liked 11a when I worked out why I had the answer I had. Clever as was 18a.

  21. Thanks to the setter & Big Dave for the hints. Found this one quite difficult. Needed the hints for 16a & 8d, but still can’t get 27a, despite reading the hint & the comments.

  22. Been so busy this w/e got to the puzzle late – Monday am. after 5 mins down to my last clue 27a; looks tricky but I think ‘see’ is a two letter word often seen in the Bible.

  23. Cheers Dave, beeing a busy working Mum, I am a week behind and was talking about the 3rd December! Anyway have now seen the full post, yes it was that easy…. I had even considered ORWELL (1984 being an unpleasant time!) Thanks for your help.

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