DT 26732 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26732 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26732 (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           Not real American Irishman (6)
A charade of a word meaning not real or fake and the two-letter abbreviation for American gives a name frequently given to an Irishman

ARVE Error: need id and provider

8a           Drag through river in downpour (6)
Put a verb meaning to drag inside the river on which the Jolly Miller lived to get a downpour

21a         Greek character by yonder church finds songbird (8)
Start with a Greek letter then add a word meaning yonder and CH(urch) to get a songbird

25a         Delayed fourth sailor during rush (8)
This word meaning delayed is created by putting a way of describing the fourth sailor (3,1) inside a rush or water grass

26a         Bring down gold carriage (6)
A charade of a word meaning to bring down an aircraft safely with the chemical symbol for gold gives a horse-drawn carriage with a folding top


1d           Battle for top journalist in hospital (5)
This battle fought in 1870, in which the Prussian army defeated a smaller French army under Napoleon III, is derived by putting the usual top journalist inside a short word for a hospital for convalescents and the chronically ill

4d           Polite and, if one’s mistaken, obstinately sticking to one’s own views (4-11)
A very clever anagram (mistaken) of POLITE AND IF ONE’S gives a word meaning obstinately sticking to one’s own views

7d           Hold-up as deer hurried towards church (9)
This hold-up or obstruction is a charade of a female red deer, a verb meaning hurried and the Church of England

16d         Telling about fishing-tackle (4,3)
An anagram (about) of TELLING gives an item used to catch fish

22d         In Shanghai, Kurt’s inscribed poem (5)
Hidden inside the clue is a Japanese poem in three lines of 5, 7 and 5 syllables

The best-known example is Bashō’s “old pond”:


this separates into:

fu-ru-i-ke ya (5)
ka-wa-zu to-bi-ko-mu (7)
mi-zu no o-to (5)


old pond . . .
a frog leaps in
water’s sound

The Crossword Club opens at 10.00am.  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: {ass} + {wan} + {damn} = {Aswan Dam}


86 comments on “DT 26732 (Hints)

  1. I thought this was a very good puzzle – the NE and SW took a bit of cogitation and the long anagram was rather good. Thanks to BD and the setter.

    1. The NE corner was filled in mentally while I waited for the kettle to boil! However it was the NW that held me up & I still can’t see why 13a is what it is.

      1. 13a Believe Ronald trapped Rebecca by leaving (6)
        You need the diminutive of the boy’s name outside the diminutive of the girl’s name having first removed the BY. The first word is the definition.

  2. Good morning Dave, you are bright and early today :-) , on first going up the downclues I could only get 2d! but after a bit of perservation and toing and froing I managed it at last, I don’t understand how I got the answer for 13a but don’t see how it can be anything else, no real favourites today – maybe 1a, I put peruse in at 8a at first!! something in my head made sense of it….duh! 24a I thought should have an s on the end instead of the last letter? Thanks for the hints Dave I didn’t need them today except for confirmation, good luck everyone, a three star for me again :-)

    1. Take the diminutive form of Rebecca and remove the letters BY. Put this in the shortened form of Ronald for a word meaning believe.

  3. Good morning everyone. I quite liked this not too easy & not too hard, with 4a, 21a, and 7d being the clues I particularly liked. I had to resort to a dictionary for 24a which is a new spelling to me.

  4. Like Rod, I too have had to resort to Chambers to complete this puzzle because I’ve never seen that spelling before. I thought 4a was very clever and made me smile but, whilst I didn’t have any problem getting the answer to 21a, I would suggest that that bird isn’t a songbird, like thrushes for example, but belongs to the family of creepers.

    1. I stand corrected! Whilst the bird in question is classed as a creeper, it is also referred to in some of my reference books as a small songbird.

      1. I too would spell 15a with a D and am not entirely happy with Chambers saying that it is now rarely spelled that way. Sorry Chambers but it is in our house. :)

          1. Mr CS will tell you that that is the mood I am in today :) He is looking forward to my departing for a long walk after lunch in the hope that I will come back less assertive. He wishes :D

            1. Well Mrs N is also in the same mood as you. She demands the Christmas tree to be put up and then she’s off to town for retail therapy. I’m instructed to join her later in the day (probably to carry parcels,gifts and the like) for early evening drinks and dinner. That’s the way us men like to have our dat planned. No fuss just facts, I can now plan my day !

              1. We have done the retail bit, I have Mr CS chopping satsumas and lemons ready for marmalade making later on, post walk. Just seen on the news that apparently we should keep an eye out at 2.30 ish this afternoon as a lunar eclipse means that the moon will glow orange. That must be why it’s starting to cloud over :(

                  1. sorry about that… iPad touch problem: And explains why Mrs T is also acting a little strange (lunatic).

  5. Enjoyable today. Needed a coffee break before I could return with a fresh mind to fill in the gaps. Took a bit of time working out that fourth was the letter D to explain 25a. Thanks to BD as always.

  6. Straightforward, enjoyable, lovely anagram indicators, dodgy duck spelling – just the right sort of crossword for a Saturday morning, once I had tracked down the crossword as once again we have a pointless advert on the back. Thanks to Cephas and BD too.

    Lovely and sunny here today but sooooo cold.

    1. With you on the duck and also a bit put out with the spirit on 24a, but otherwise enjoyable. NE kent is cold got wood burner alight. Had to chip a dog off a lampost this morning. Thanks to all.

      1. Thanks Dave. Been doing the DT for years and recently stumbled on your blog …. I think it’s fantastic!

      1. I’ve been watching the Rugby, back now, I’m struggling with 24a or, at least, if I’ve got it right I don’t know why

  7. Enjoyable – liked 3d. Worked out 10a and 24a, but they were both new to me. Always learning … Have a good day all.

  8. Really good one today. I managed to finish it without resorting to any hints which, for me, is quite unusual.

  9. Lovely crossword today although when I first started it I thought that it was going to be a stinker! Did most of right side reasonably easily but the left side took at least two or three times longer. Lots of great clues but especially (?specially – never know if there is a right or wrong place to use one or other or what the difference is anyway – quite sure that someone will tell me!!) 4 and 23a and 2, 4 and 14d. With thanks to Cephas and BD.
    Arctic here today – boiler conked out! :sad: Might have to go and play with cuttings in the greenhouse – it’s probably warmer there!

    1. Oh dear what a time for the boiler to pack up! although I have only just put the heating on today, it’s strange but I did all the left side first amazing how different we all are!

  10. I thought this an excellent puzzle – elegant clueing and not too hard but with enough to make one think a bit. Any idea who the setter is? More please is all I can say!
    Thanks to the setter for brightening up my morning coffee.

    1. It should be Cephas this week – the anagrams and nice indicators thereof probably mean that it is

      1. Thought it might be him. He’s another of the nice chaps I met in Derby. Blagged me for a £ for his Christmas quiz in aid of his Church!

  11. I thought today’s puzzle was a tad harder than normal – even the scrambled eggs failed to get my brain round it. A mid morning cup of tea solved things. 5d is a regular. Thanks for the review. Very chilly in East Hertfordshire. Off to Bucharest on Monday where it is even chillier. West Brom to win today.

  12. Just found your site earlier this week and wanted to say thanks for the hints. Today’s prize puzzle was entertaining – as are the comments. Clues 4a, 23a, 7d and 12d were my favourites. You’ve attracted another regular visitor.

  13. Re 1a Dave, isn’t that the English way of spelling the name surely an E replaces the second letter for the Irishman

        1. oops naughty corner for you off you go lots of mince pies and mulled wine there today so you’ll be OK :-D

          1. I had always thought that the “Naughty Corner” was supposed to be some sort of punishment. Looks very inviting!

            I’ll just have the mulled wine, thanks! The answer to 20a is “******”!

  14. Trickier than most … still scratching my head over 19d which does seem to have puzzled anyone else above …

      1. It’s a double definition as far as I can see Chris a ‘keep’ is another word or synonym for a building of worship

    1. Mrs T thinks this is a building Or fortress. She should know! And the eclipse seems to be bringing out the lunatic in us.

      1. And for 24a it not his kind of spirit (being Tantalus). Weather in Boston mid 40s , Mr T mid 50s. He still thinks I can’t use the computer. Mrs T

    2. OK, got it. I had the wrong answer for 24a – there’s a spirit in an online game called R*****. Correct answer is almost as obscure …. neither is my type of spirit either …

  15. Always enjoy reading the blog – agree about spelling of 1a – don’t think any self-respecting Irishman would spell it that way? Ditto whoever it was about 10a and 24a – both new words for me too, though did manage to work them out (with the help of Chambers). Lots of nice clues – 4a and 4d, also liked 12d and 23a. Was a bit puzzled about 21a as a) I don’t consider it a songbird either and b) is the word in the clue really a definitioin of “yonder”?? “Go past yonder farm” I suppose just about makes it but “**** farm over yonder” definitely doesn’t! Small niggle though, as thoroughly enjoyed to-day’s offering so thanks to setter and to BD for the hints.

    1. Ooops, I’ve been asterisked! Sorry – freudian slip, meant to type “the farm over yonder”.

  16. The tree isn’t up, the presents aren’t wrapped, the cards aren’t signed, but at least the crossword’s nearly done!
    It’s the bottom left corner that’s held me up today and still stuck on 15a, so I’m relieved to see there’s been some controversy on here about it today: any hints please anyone?

    1. Thanks Tantalus! And with the same sort of how-come-I-didn’t-see-that-half-an-hour-ago grown that accompanied 12d the lid goes back on the pen.
      Thanks to the setter for a very enjoyable puzzle, BD for the help with 16d, and Tantalus again for 12d.

        1. No, but she did once ask me if I’d ever had bread elbow. When I said no she skewered a bread roll on my elbow.

    2. but this spelling has the D omitted. Thanks to BD for the guidance.

      Merry Xmas to all (we are fed us saying Happy Holidays here in the US). And we are not allowed to say the word for 17d here in Massachusetts. Where will it end… perhaps they should remove all words beginning with N – or say “unpluswhite” to be goodthinkful.

  17. Hi Dave

    First time on your site. For the life of me cannot figure out 9a, it’s the last one to do!!
    Please help

    1. Hi Nick – welcome to the blog.
      9a Study the content of tanned skin (8)
      The definition is “of tanned skin”, i.e. it’s an adjective describing the tanned skin of an animal.

  18. A very late start for me today. Some headscratching involved but got there in the end. I know 15a with an extra letter so I had to use the hints to confirm my answer. Had never heard of 22d, thank heavens for google. Enjoyed the puzzle, 3* for me today, thanks for the hints, only needed for confirmation today.

  19. Thanks to the setter & Big Dave for the hints, although I didn’t them today. I found this very entertaining, favourites were 1,20, 23a & 3,12d.

  20. Bit of a slog with plenty of answers resulting in words I’d not heard of before, but the wordplay was clear enough for me to fathom a guess.
    Can someone provide a hint for 9a – I have an answer that fits but I can make no sense of the wordplay? Is this meant to be a charade?
    Many thanks :)

    1. Hi Tim, another word for study with “the” from the clue written in to it, gives an adjective for tanned animal skin. Big Dave answered it further up the blog.

      1. Thanks Heno – I guess Big Dave’s explanation must have been deleted as it’s not there now.

        1. I think Heno means the comment fron Gazza at #23 but it doesn’t give the game away as much as I did! I’ll probably have to go to the naughty corner now, but I like mulled wine and mince pies!

    2. Hi Tim
      It’s a rather obscure word (to me anyway) describing a tanned skin, or hide. You need a word for study or get to know and insert (content) THE (from the clue). I’ve never come across this word but guessed it from the wordplay and checkers and then went to the OED to check!

    1. Welcome to the blog John

      11a I’d got in row, being more methodical (6)
      It’s really simple! Put I’D inside a row or rank to get a word meaning more methodical

      1. Had enough of the non-mulled variety already!
        Quite liked your NTSPP today so thanks for that. See my comment about the theme guy though!

  21. Off to watch the second half of Madrid v Barca now so see you all again tomorrow. (1-1 at half time and not all that exciting so far but maybe better to follow!).

  22. As a Spanish friend put it last year – there are only 2 important things in Spanish football. – La Liga and Lionel Messi! How much would Fergie pay for him I wonder?

    1. Should he (Lionel) come to Manchester he’d probably seize with rheumatism and crippling arthritis in no time flat.

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