DT 26733 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26733

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26733

Hints and tips by Libellule

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty * Enjoyment ***

I am not expecting anybody to need the blog today…

The answer can be revealed by highlighting the space between the curly brackets


1. Edna’s kebab is mixed with cheap tinned food (5,5)
{BAKED BEANS} – An anagram (is mixed) of EDNA’S KEBAB.

9. Duck, mate! Here comes a stone! (4)
{OPAL} – O (duck) and another word for a friend is also a gemstone.

10. Not in favour of rigid price control that’s for winter motoring (10)
{ANTIFREEZE} – Take a word for “not in favour of” and another word for “rigid price control” to get a liquid (usually ethylene glycol) that is added to the water in your radiator.

11. They give gold to be held by university staff (6)
{DONORS} – The definition is “they give”. Put OR (gold) inside another term for college or university professors,

12. Drawing stumps? (3-4)
{FAG-ENDS} – The stubs of cigarettes or the frayed ends of lengths of cloth or ropes. Drawing I presume is referring to inhalation.

15. Unusually precise cooking instructions (7)
{RECIPES} – An anagram (unusually) of PRECISE.

16. Facilitated return of stamped addressed envelope to editor (5)
{EASED} – Reverse (return) the abbreviation for stamped addressed envelope and then add ED (editor).

17. Transmit broadcast of quarter-final (4)
{SEND} – S (a division of the compass, a quarter) and END (final).

18. Very keen to do a turn as a singer (4)
{DIVA} – Reverse (do a turn) a word meaning very keen or enthusiastic to get an operatic prima-donna.

19. They’re proverbially hard things to drive home (5)
{NAILS} – a word in a phrase that is used to describe someone who is physically tough or is stern and unyielding are also pointed pieces of metal used as fasteners.

21. Fires badly singe it (7)
{IGNITES} – An anagram (badly) of SINGE IT.

22. Emanate from an aquatic mammal (7)
{MANATEE} – Another anagram (from) this time of EMANATE.

24. Improve — one’s bust line? (6)
{UPLIFT} – A word meaning to raise morally, spiritually or culturally, is also essentially what a bra does.

27. Possibly treats nine to dinner (10)
{ENTERTAINS} – An anagram (possibly) of TREATS NINE.

28. Celebrity — like Georgie? (4)
{FAME} – This Georgie is a rhythm and blues, jazz singer and a keyboard player who had a string of 1960s hits.

29. It doesn’t really make fast relative speed (6,4)
{GRANNY KNOT} – A way of tying two pieces of rope together that is liable to slip or jam is constructed from an elder relative and a measure of nautical speed.


2. Name expert seen about skin problem (4)
{ACNE} – Put ACE around N (name).

3. Show a different Venice (6)
{EVINCE} – An anagram (different) of VENICE.

4. How price is displayed by pub laws (3,4)
{BAR CODE} – A pricing pattern that can be read by a laser scanner is built from another word for a place where drinks are served and a word for a comprehensive collection of laws.

5. Tip-top (4)
{APEX} – The highest point or the pointed end of an object.

6. Ground prepared for development? (7)
{SEEDBED} –A plot of land used for growing young plants is also a place where something develops.

7. Not altogether how pyramids are built (2,2,1,5)
{UP TO A POINT} – A phrase that means “to some extent or somewhat” could be how you build a pyramid.

8. Narrow escape — from a cut-throat? (5,5)
{CLOSE SHAVE} – Cut throat in this clue is a reference to a type of razor.

12. Hand-to-hand combat? (10)
{FISTICUFFS} – Another word for pugilism that consists of two words for striking blows with the hands.

13. Dining out with meal and drink (3,3,4)
{GIN AND LIME} – An anagram (out) of DINING and MEAL.

14. Stories that may be read, anyway (5)
{SAGAS} – Another word for Icelandic or Norwegian prose narratives is also a palindrome.

15. State true figure (5)
{REALM} – A word for a kingdom or a royal domain is another word for genuine or authentic followed by M (Roman numeral for a thousand).

19. It’s intended to encourage laying in a little money (4,3)
{NEST EGG} – An artificial object placed in a nest to encourage a bird to continue to lay is also a sum of money put by as a reserve.

20. Colouring when second offence is detailed (7)
{SAFFRON} – An orange yellow to moderate orange colour is S (second) followed by another word for an insult that has its last letter removed.

23. Criticism at change of course (6)
{ATTACK} – AT and a nautical change of direction.

25. English worker climbing Italian peak (4)
{ETNA} – Its that Sicilian peak, again. E (English) and crossword lands favourite worker reversed (climbing).
26. Preposition or noun typist omitted initially (4)
{ONTO} – The first letters (initially) of “or noun typist omitted”.

The Quick crossword pun: {hie} + {pot} +{in use} = {hypotenuse}

69 comments on “DT 26733

  1. No problems for me today but fun nevertheless. Definitely 1* for difficulty, I’ll look at the toughie after shopping with my good lady.

  2. Typical Monday morning fare, 7 anagrams and a mixture of childish clues with some fun ones. I liked 12d and 24a. Thanks to the setter and to Libellule for the review.

  3. A lovely start to the week that caused no probs – mainly because I like anagrams of which there were a lot.
    I found 12d and 20d the hardest and Like Father Brian my fave was Ednas.

  4. Thanks for the 1 star – congratulating myself on getting better only to realise it was an easier puzzle. Thanks anyway for the hi ts which for once I didn’t need.

  5. Strangely enough on first run through I hadn’t filled in many blanks and it took me a while to get going today, lots of lovely Rufus clues 1a, 7d, 29a 12a to name but a few, I hadnt heard of 3d or 22a therefore at least 2* fr me today, enjoy everyone, I am now going to try eXternal puzzle on COW but I think it will be too good for me, we’ll see
    Thanks for hints Libelulle though as you say not needed today :-)

  6. A lovely easy start to the week. The web site has improved in leaps and bounds recently (hope I’m not tempting fate) and I can even print off the crossword at 6 am Dubai time and look at it over breakfast. Thanks to all concerned, including setter and Libellule.

  7. Pleasant start to the week as we have come to expect from Rufus. Thanks to he & to Libellule for the review.

    In passing The Guardian has a more difficult Rufus offering if anybody’s interested.

  8. Definitely 1* difficulty – I was in line for a world record but I had a huge mental block with 6d and a d’oh moment with 26d. Thank you to Rufus for the usual entertaining start to the week and to Libellule for the explanations.

    1. Yeah, me too: I filled all the across clues in without any gaps before starting the downs for the first time ever, and had everything except 6d and 20d in in less than half the time of my fastest solve. Sadly my brain then failed. But very enjoyable nevertheless. 12a and 29a have smileys next to them.

  9. Agree with all the previous comments – only needed the hint to explain 20d – completely missed the significance of “detailed” in the clue and couldn’t make any sense of it at all. Maybe I’m going to have another “bad crossword” week! Apart from that I didn’t have any problems although 12d took me a while to see, having assumed that 12a was an obscure “crickety thingy” and was, therefore, probably going to have a “leg” in it. Oh dear!! Once that was sorted out it was all fine. Favourites today are 1, 28 and 29a. Thanks to Rufus and Libellule.

  10. It must be time by now for compilers to declare a moratorium on 18a – whichever way round – or at the very least to find a different way of cluing it.

      1. I wouldn’t have got that if I hadn’t known the answer – never heard of “div” but have looked it up now. Thanks – another one to be stored away for future use! :smile:

    1. Actually I prefer no pictures. Sometimes I just need a small hint and the picture gives the whole game away.

    2. I do occasionally wonder what would happen if a Ray T crossword overlapped with Gazza doing the hints …. ! :grin: The mind boggles!!

  11. May I say as an occasional visitor to this site what nice people you all seem to be. It is genuinely a pleasure to come here even if I’m not doing the crossword just to be amongst such intelligent, kind and civilised company.

  12. I thought 7d and 29a were fun, and 12a clever. Also got a bit stumped by 6d, but the rest was pretty quick today.

    And I liked the 1a anagram.

  13. Well now, 12A. Totally threw me because I had DOGENDS in for this and jolly pleased I was with it too. Anyone else familiar with this word?

  14. I agree about the difficulty rating, definitely a one! I normally warm up on the quickie but I saw ‘acne’
    and ‘baked beans’ immediately and carried on in the same way and before I knew it I was finished!!
    Only hold-up, like Cryptic Sue, was 6d but Libellule soon knocked that on the head, many thanks!

  15. Well, I was going like a train and although completed I was thrown by some of the answers. I don’t really do “Crossword Land” as it were and I have none of the books that quote endless synonyms etc and I know only a few greek letters. However after feeling miffed at the use of the word “detailed” in 20 down its just occurred to me that this means De-tailled. So that’s a triumph of understanding for me. However I am still not sure about 17 across. Should it have been “Transmit” or “Broadcast” but not both?
    5 down did not seem cryptic to me so I could not see the reasoning. And “finally drawing” stumps 12 across, I did get “fag end” after filling in 12 down but how does this relate to “Drawing”. I hope I don’t sound negative as I actually enjoy this daily puzzle (and of course help from this wonderful blog, even though I hardly ever look at it to solve a puzzle, its nice to know the reason for some of the answers.)

      1. and no it’s not negative, I often get an answer but don’t quite understand it, then I query it or ask someone to explain to me and someone always does, it’s how we learn :-)

    1. Re 17A – Broadcast in this case is the noun (as in outside broadcast) so you would transmit a broadcast (if you’re into computer speak, think of it like a podcast – you don’t podcast something, but you can do things to a podcast such as transmit it or read it).

      1. Thanks Mary & Skempie. I still don’t get fag. But there we are.
        Broadcast is also a verb and surely if you podcast something that is a verb. Anyway life is too short to worry about it, but thanks for the response.

  16. Don’t see the bottom half as 1 star, more like a 3 star for me. Thought some of the clues were very tricky ie 20d, 23d and 13d. Liked the top half though, very good.def a puzzle of 2 halves, bit like the spurs game yesterday, wonder how much stoke paid that bent ref!

  17. I managed to do this while drinking my breakfast coffee this morning. Both went down very smoothly and almost in no time at all. So encouraging, but really almost too easy — some people are never satisfied! My only slight hold-ups were at 12a, where I suspected a cricket term, and stupidly at 26d. Many thanks to Rufus, and to Libellule comme toujours. :-)

  18. A very quick solve for me too – last in 26d and 29a – thought I would need the hints but the penny dropped in time! 12d was a head-scratcher for a while, too. Liked 7d, made me smile. Thanks to setter and Libellule. Bet we won’t all be so pleased with ourselves for the rest of the week??!

  19. Thanks to the setter & Libellule. A very straightforward start to the week, but still enjoyable. Favourites were 9,28, 29a & 7,12, 14d. Last in was 26d.

  20. I regret to say, Libellule, that I am having to refer to some of your hints, for which many thanks, in either confirming my answer or in getting the answer. Therefore, I would put this down as 2* or may be my brain is addled after French classes.

    1. My Dad was somewhere (don’t ask me where – can’t remember) in WW2 and asked for a gin and lime – he was brought a glass FULL of gin and a lime – as in a whole lime!!

            1. S comes from the initial letter of “second”, then followed by affront with the last letter missing (de-tailed).

              1. Thanks Roland. It was the ‘An orange yellow to moderate orange colour’ in the hint that threw me. I didn’t really understand it and I still don’t

                1. There are generally a couple of definitions for Saffron… such as
                  a. A corm-producing plant (Crocus sativus) native to the Old World, having purple or white flowers with orange stigmas.
                  b. The dried aromatic stigmas of this plant, used to color foods and as a cooking spice and dyestuff.
                  2. A moderate or strong orange yellow to moderate orange.
                  The second referring specifically to the colour saffron.
                  Both 1a, and 2 would satisfy the defintion.

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