DT 26815

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26815

Hints and tips by Gazza

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ****Enjoyment ***

I’ve given this one four stars for difficulty because I struggled with a couple of clues (specially 6d), not so much to get the answers as to understand the wordplay. Let us know how you fared.

If you want to see an answer just highlight the spaces between the brackets under the clue (if you have a newfangled I-thingy or equivalent then there is some advice on how to reveal the answer in the FAQs).

Across Clues

1a  Mystic charm deployed in right-wing movement (11)
{MCCARTHYISM} – an anagram (deployed) of MYSTIC CHARM gives us the name of the right-wing movement in the US in the 1950s (named after the senator who took the lead in the witch-hunt) which accused many Americans of being communist sympathisers.

10a  Inspiring wonder in a fan (5)
{AWING} – a present participle meaning inspiring wonder or veneration is also, as (1,4) a fan (the type that blows air, not the type that attends football matches).

11a  Something that exposes the pupil to an enlightening experience? (3-6)
{EYE-OPENER} – cryptic definition of something that brings home to you what’s going on.

12a  Happy to be going round islands at end of June frozen! (9)
{GLACIATED} – the definition is frozen (normally used as a description of an area covered by ice sheets). Put a synonym for happy round a) the abbreviation for Jersey and its sister islands, b) AT (in the clue) and c) the end letter of (Jun)E.

13a  Love having look at nymph (5)
{OREAD} – the letter that looks like zero (love, in tennis scoring) is followed by a verb to look at or peruse to make a mountain nymph.

14a  One cold bird leaving lake behind when temperature gets very low (3,3)
{ICE AGE} – a time of very low temperatures comes from I(one), C(old) and a bird of prey without the L(ake).

16a  Computer system to restrict film (8)
{INTERNET} – the computer system that in a remarkably short period of time has become indispensable for many people is a charade of a verb to restrict or confine and Spielberg’s film about a visitor from another planet.

18a  Magnificence of senior woman, awfully rude (8)
{GRANDEUR} – this word for magnificence comes from an elderly female relative followed by an anagram (awfully) of RUDE.

20a  Dish — hot one or cold one? (6)
{CHILLI} – today’s very old chestnut – a dish which is hot but sounds cold.

23a  Time to go to the bar? Here’s the path (5)
{TRAIL} – a path comes from T(ime) followed by a bar.

24a  Where you’d find bosses sounding uninterested, cold once (9)
{BOARDROOM} – this is where you’d find bosses, specifically company directors. It’s a charade of two homophones (sounding) – firstly a sound-alike of an adjective meaning uninterested and secondly a sound-alike of an old (once) word for a head-cold.

26a  See me in club naughtily hugging old mistress from Italy (9)
{COLUMBINE} – an anagram (naughtily) of ME IN CLUB contains (hugging) O(ld) to make Harlequin’s mistress in the Italian commedia dell’arte.

27a  Part of capital city Hitler almost destroyed (5)
{LEITH} – an anagram (destroyed) of most of HITLE(r) produces the port of Edinburgh which he bombed during WWII. Superb clue!

28a  Risky business investment? (6,5)
{DANGER MONEY} – this is a cryptic definition of the extra pay that a worker gets for doing a risky job.

Down Clues

2d  Country church in Austria (5)
{CHINA} – I wrote the answer straight in for this one after seeing what I thought was a hidden word. Giovanni, however, would not give us a hidden word clue without an indicator so you actually have to build the answer from a) an abbreviation of church, b) IN (from the clue) and c) the IVR code for Austria.

3d  Activity by the banks that may bring no gain! (7)
{ANGLING} – cryptic definition – banks here are not the much derided financial institutions but stretches next to a river.

4d  Score that might be average for lower-order batsman? (6)
{TWENTY} – if “three score years and ten” means seventy then how many are there in a score? I suppose that this is more or less what a lower-order batsman might average in a season but it seems a bit weak to me – do you have a better explanation?

5d  Dying, lie sprawled out, giving way (8)
{YIELDING} – a present participle meaning giving way or ceding is an anagram (sprawled out) of DYING LIE.

6d  What if huge American composer comes round? (7)
{SUPPOSE} – this is another clue where the answer is fairly obvious but I puzzled over the wordplay. The definition is “what if?”. The abbreviation for huge or outsize (in clothing sizes) has around it the name of a composer. My problem is that a) neither Chambers nor any other source I could find reckon that the abbreviation is an American-only usage and b) the composer was Austrian. So why American? Is it a typo or is it extremely subtle? If you understand it do let me know!

7d  Merry cattle? That’s a joke! (8,5)
{LAUGHING STOCK} – a present participle meaning merry is followed by what cattle is an example of to make an object of ridicule (joke).

8d  It’s very unpleasant in Cornish river, English sailors admitted (8)
{INFERNAL} – a description of something very unpleasant or hellish is constructed from IN and a Cornish river with E(nglish) and the abbreviation for our sailors inserted (admitted).

9d  Monument showing the comrade recollected with ‘RIP’ (3,2,8)
{ARC DE TRIOMPHE} – an anagram (re-collected) of THE COMRADE and RIP gives a monument in Paris.

15d  Black time to begin with — not necessarily permanent (8)
{ERASABLE} – an heraldic term for black is preceded (to begin with) by a long period of time.

17d  Clumsy and dissolute fellow in US with conspicuous wealth (8)
{BUMBLING} – the definition is clumsy. It’s a charade of a North American tramp or dissolute fellow and the conspicuous and glitzy trappings of wealth.

19d  A problem having two women around fifty (7)
{DILEMMA} – two female names (the first an abbreviated one) go round the Roman numeral for fifty.

21d  Foreign gentleman gets one good boy set up in small house (7)
{HIDALGO} – this foreign gentleman is a Spanish nobleman. I (one) and G(ood) have a synonym for boy reversed (set up, in a down clue) inside, then all that is inserted in an abbreviated house.

22d  Profession of private nurse requiring additional internal energy (6)
{CAREER} – someone who looks after an invalid (private nurse) has E(nergy) inserted (additional internal) to make a profession or occupation.

25d  Girl in the flesh with nothing on (5)
{OLIVE} – a girl’s name comes from a description of something in the flesh (as opposed to inanimate) with the letter standing for zero or nothing preceding it (on, in a down clue). I have valiantly resisted the urge for a picture!

The stand-out clue for me today is 27a. Tell us what you liked.

Today’s Quickie Pun: {MELLOWED} + {RAMA} = {MELODRAMA}



  1. Toadson
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:13 am | Permalink

    Have a day off work today and finished this (unlike yesterday). Liked 12a, 16a, and 17d. And yes – now that I’ve seen the double edge to 27a, agree that it is a very clever clue. Have a good day all.

  2. Hrothgar
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:15 am | Permalink

    Thanks Gazza for the review and the setter for a truly great, very clever and thoroughly enjoyable puzzle.
    I thunk and thunk about 1a and 9d, once they dawned, completion started reasonably ‘apace’

  3. Jezza
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:18 am | Permalink

    Completed, but not convinced with a couple of the down clues, as mentioned by gazza.
    I thought this was tricky in places. Thanks to Giovanni, and to gazza for the review.

    A similar story for the Toughie – Completed, but unsure on a couple.

  4. Wayne
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:18 am | Permalink

    Surprisingly I didn’t find this to difficult today. Must admit to guessing 6d from the matching letters. Thanx to Compiler and to Gazza for the review. Is there a typo in the Quickie Pun, 4a is four letters not five.

    • gazza
      Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:25 am | Permalink

      I’ve amended your handle back to the usual one. I don’t understand why it changed.
      Are you looking at the right Quickie?

      • Wozza
        Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:39 am | Permalink

        He means 5 across. You’ve answered it as 5 letters.

    • Wayne
      Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:29 am | Permalink

      5a in Quickie is Rama, small typo in your Quickie Pun I think.:-).

      • gazza
        Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:35 am | Permalink

        Thanks – fixed now.

  5. Colmce
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    Thanks Gazza, glad you gave this a 4* difficulty, as it really taxed me.
    Must brush up on my Greek mythology.

    Clever stuff though and some nice wordplay. Enjoyed it.

  6. Brian
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:29 am | Permalink

    Found this far easier than yesterday’s. Brilliant puzzle with some super clues 27a, 14a, 20a (my favourite) and 7d to name by a few.
    I too struggle to understand 6d even though the answer is obvious. Thx as always to the Maestro for an enjoyable Friday xword and to Gazza for the hints which glad to say I didn’t need today

  7. Giovanni
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:41 am | Permalink

    Hands up re Suppe. Moral — always check what you take for granted! Very sorry! Thanks for comments

    • gazza
      Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:44 am | Permalink

      Thanks for clearing that up.

  8. Kath
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:45 am | Permalink

    Every time I think that I’m getting better at Friday crosswords one like this turns up!! SO glad that Gazza gave it 4* for difficulty. I didn’t (and still don’t really) understand 6d – I wondered if the first two letters reversed (coming round) was the American bit but then there’s no composer – it still doesn’t make any sense to me although it had to be what it was. I’ve never met 1a before – had alternate letters and had guessed the last three which didn’t leave much space for the remaining ones – thought that I must have got something wrong but then a track by the Beatles came on the radio which made me think “Mc”! How lucky – would never have got it otherwise. Clues that I particularly liked include 18, 26 and 27a and 9 and 17d. Loved 7d. With thanks to Giovanni and Gazza.
    Have caught husband’s “man flu” – very snotty and disgusting – if I’d known what a beastly bug this is I might have been a bit more sympathetic when he was moping around!!

    • Captain Duff
      Posted March 16, 2012 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

      I’m with you Kath, I don’t understand 6d either although I got it right. Spent the best part of an hour trying to get 1a before resorting to a dictionary. Since then have spent the best part of another hour hitting my head against a wall for not getting it before! Great crossword though ****/**** from me. Commiserations on getting man flu – there are some nasty strains about. You can take over from me in keeping Kleenex’s profits up. Anybody seen Mary?

      • gazza
        Posted March 16, 2012 at 7:06 pm | Permalink

        Giovanni left a comment and explained that the clue should have read “Austrian composer” rather than “American composer” so it’s SUPPOSE (What if?) coming from SUPPE round OS (huge).
        Mary was around this morning and was able to read the blog but not leave any comments (due to the problems covered elsewhere).

        • Captain Duff
          Posted March 16, 2012 at 7:27 pm | Permalink

          Thank you Gazza – another head banging moment. I was concentrating on the US being the American part of the clue! Forgot to thank you for your tips and hints and to Giovanni for an excellent crossword. Good to know that Mary is somewhere out in the ether keeping a watchful eye on what’s going on.

  9. Giovanni
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:48 am | Permalink

    On reflection, I was probably thinking of SOUSA!

    • eXternal
      Posted March 16, 2012 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

      obviously bypassed the editor too, you can share the blame. The rest of the puzzle makes up for it. I enjoyed it, thanks

  10. Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:53 am | Permalink

    Like Brian, I found this a bit of a relief after yesterday. 12a was good 18a was doh and 27a was brilliant, made all the harder by me thinking Erith!!
    Well done to all.Trouble commenting in last few days. WordPress causing probs.

  11. Wayne
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:54 am | Permalink

    Yep, I meant 5a (not 4a). Having Trabeculectomy next week so hope I can then identify letters/numbers more clearly then.

  12. Boltonbabs
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:54 am | Permalink

    Found this really tricky. Was convinced 1a could not be an anagram as there were not enough vowels! Real sense of achievement when it was finished. Thanks.

  13. Little Mart
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

    Found this extremely difficult and would have never finished without the hints.
    I have no idea how some of the clues work even now – 4d for example.
    Whoever posted a week or so ago that the crosswords of today are too easy should remember the adage ‘ Be careful what you wish for!’
    Many thanks to the two G’s.

  14. Posted March 16, 2012 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

    Just finished. Took. Bit longer than normal and needed the explanation for 16a – nothing else it could have been but I’m not familiar with the film. Is 1a not something to do with the manner Wolves treat their managers! Good test today and all the difficult clues were fathomable. Many thanks Gazza and to the setter. 4* for me.

    • Posted March 16, 2012 at 12:40 pm | Permalink

      ET …. Dohh… Just got it. Don’t you just hate it when that happens!

  15. Posted March 16, 2012 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

    I am sending up the batsignal (for want of a spider-related clarion) to say that crossword setter Arachne/Anarche is taking part in a live Q&A at the Guardian site today. If you want to natter with her or chat generally about crosswords, please pop your head in.

  16. crypticsue
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 12:36 pm | Permalink

    I thoroughly enjoyed this one, it took me the same time as usual for a Giovanni but seemed to be more fun than some. My first thought for the composer was Sousa too. Still at least we can add another composer to the list of those that might appear in a cryptic crossword. Thanks to Giovanni for the entertainment and to Gazza for the explanations.

    Don’t be put off by the fact that the Toughie is by Myops. It has lots of anagrams which makes it more user-friendly than previous Myopses or should that be Myopi??

    • MYOPS
      Posted March 16, 2012 at 1:05 pm | Permalink


      • crypticsue
        Posted March 16, 2012 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

        I will note that down for future use :)

        • Prolixic
          Posted March 16, 2012 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

          Presumably crosswords in his style are Myopic!

          • crypticsue
            Posted March 16, 2012 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

            So having 5 more years experience of being a myope than I have of being a cryptic solver must stand me in good stead when looking at one of his crosswords :D

  17. michaelswanston
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 12:37 pm | Permalink

    Very enjoyable puzzle this morning 6d. caused some confusion for me. Franz V.. ….. and clothing largeness I presume. Thanks setter and Gazza.

    • gazza
      Posted March 16, 2012 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

      Hi Michael,
      Your comment needed moderation because you’ve changed your handle. Both old and new should now work.

      • michaelswanston
        Posted March 16, 2012 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

        I’m having so much bother with the blog today. Who am I now??? Thanks for all your help.

  18. Vince
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 12:43 pm | Permalink

    Having a bad day today. Still don’t understand 10a or “cold once” in 24a.

    • Jezza
      Posted March 16, 2012 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

      rheum is an old word for a cold.

      • Vince
        Posted March 16, 2012 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

        Ah! Thank you Jezza.

  19. Prolixic
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

    Highly enjoyable. Only detained by trying to spell 1a beginning with Mac… which made 2d tricky until I spotted my blooper.

    Thanks to Giovanni for the crossword and to Gazza for the review.

  20. beaver
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 12:54 pm | Permalink

    Gave today’s ***/****as i thought it the best of the week,struggled a bit in SW corner due to my incompetance, as i initially spelt the 18 across solution wrongly which meant i coud not solve 17d and i was also using the wrong anagram letters for 28a- incidently the solution to this clue was a new meaning for me of the ‘flower’-apart from these hiccups-straight forward! All fell into place when i eventually spelt 18a correctly.

  21. BigBoab
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

    Many thanks to Giovanni and to Gazza, a super puzzle and review.

    • BigBoab
      Posted March 16, 2012 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

      Dave, if I use my Sky email I keep getting referred to the word press log in.

  22. Derek
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

    Another VERY enjoyable puzzle from The Don!
    I cannot list my likes as there are too many and I do not want negative retorts from other solvers.
    One of my old lady-friends (still alive in CA) used to make 20a “con carne” and it was really hot!
    Re 27a – although I lived many years in the west of Scotland – we used “to go through to Edinburgh” regularly!
    Happy days!

  23. Steve_the_beard
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

    What an enjoyable puzzle! Definitely ****/****, although 4D is a bit weak.

    Loved 20A, 26A, 27A.

    Gazza, shame on you and your will power! (Re 25D, of course.)

    Re 9D; lovely anagram. Of course, were the answer in English then the clue could have been “Moses leans his motorcycle against a tree in the Elysian Fields”. :-)

    • Posted March 16, 2012 at 7:35 pm | Permalink

      Yes, I would not have been able to resist posting a dodgy pic of Olive from on the busses!

  24. voxynn
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

    Hi everyone! For the first time EVER I’m 5 for 5 in cryptic crosswords this week! While I know the streak won’t continue for long, it’s onwards and upwards to the Toughies now! :)

  25. Roger
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

    About as tough as I can manage, thanks for the workout setter. 28a was favourite.

  26. Hrothgar
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 4:25 pm | Permalink

    I would like a better explanation of 4d.
    Like most here, I got the answer without conviction of the reasoning.

    • gazza
      Posted March 16, 2012 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

      So would I, but I have a suspicion that there isn’t one.

    • WattaFiasco
      Posted March 16, 2012 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

      4d – Twenty seems a very high average for a lower-order batsman. It’s also a very high average for the current top-order batsmen playing for England.

      Grazie, Giovanni for a cracking crossword – apart from 4d & 6d (I suppose!)

      (I doubt if anyone will read this – WordPress problems)

      • Posted March 16, 2012 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

        I read it!

        • WattaFiasco
          Posted March 16, 2012 at 6:18 pm | Permalink

          But – my only way to leave a comment today was by “under cover” – my normal access was denied – regards, Franco!

      • Hrothgar
        Posted March 16, 2012 at 7:27 pm | Permalink

        Yes, certainly not a niggle, it doesn’t detract from what a great puzzle it was.

      • Kath
        Posted March 16, 2012 at 7:38 pm | Permalink

        I read it too – came through to look at comments before we sit by the fire and have supper. Don’t understand the WattaFiasco bit!! :smile:

        • WattaFiasco
          Posted March 16, 2012 at 10:03 pm | Permalink

          Cricket averages…Now, how can I explain……………………………? :?: ?

          • WattaFiasco
            Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:53 pm | Permalink

            On the same subject…..Cricket ,,,,,..Sachin Tendulkar finally get his 100th international Hundred!

            Famous Anagram – “Sachin Tendulkar” = “And I Lack the Runs”

  27. Kath
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

    I’m not having trouble with making comments but read the blurb anyway – “Happiness Engineers”??!! What the hell are they?

    • andy
      Posted March 16, 2012 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

      I liked Tilsits response!

      • Kath
        Posted March 16, 2012 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

        .. I hadn’t got as far as reading the comments under the blurb – hadn’t realised there were any – NOW I see what you mean! :smile:

  28. henostat
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to the two G’s, I’m still trying this one, enjoyed it so far. Just seeing if I can blog.

  29. Posted March 16, 2012 at 5:52 pm | Permalink

    A LOVELY PUZZLE!! Despite a few Southwesterly blusterings which reluctantly persuaded me to come to this eminent blog for assistance it is one of the best for a while.

    Thanks to gazzita and Giovanni.

    • Posted March 16, 2012 at 5:54 pm | Permalink

      Because of the problems with commenting I’m not sure if this is your first comment. If it is then welcome to the blog.

  30. Addicted
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 7:05 pm | Permalink

    A very enjoyable one to-day – not easy, but MUCH more solveable than yesterday’s!! Needed hints (and blog) for some explanations – i.e. didn’t understand second part of 24a so thanks to Jezza at #18 above. Also had the same problem as everyone else with 6d, tho did get the answer (am not very hot on composers in any case!!) and have to confess to having second word of 28a wrong – but it didn’t affect anything! However, that is not the point, I agree. Didn’t understand the Italian ref for 26a until I read the hints. Thanks to the 2 “G’s”.

  31. henostat
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 7:12 pm | Permalink

    Managed it in the end, but had fumbling for 17d, one letter wrong but my definition didn’t fit the clue! Favourite was 7d. Rained all day today in the Lake District.

    • henostat
      Posted March 16, 2012 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

      Didn’t like 6d.

    • Kath
      Posted March 16, 2012 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

      My favourite was 7d too – could you send some rain down in our direction please (Oxford would do nicely) as we apparently have a hosepipe ban as of April 1st. My poor plants …. :sad:

      • henostat
        Posted March 16, 2012 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

        Hi Kath, you’ll probably have rain on Monday, as I’ll be back in London :-)

  32. Little Dave
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 7:32 pm | Permalink

    All done save 8d and 13a. Yes, 4d a tad weak.

  33. Kath
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 7:46 pm | Permalink

    I’m assuming, from something that I read earlier, that those having trouble posting comments are able to read the hints and the comments so I thought that I’d just leave a message for Mary.
    Poor you – this must be very frustrating – do hope that it all gets sorted out soon – come back – I miss your comments!!! :grin:

  34. DogDoctor
    Posted March 16, 2012 at 9:58 pm | Permalink

    I’m feeling quite proud. That’s my first four-star finish, having started the telegraph crossword rather late in life six months ago!
    I’ve used this site as a lurker for educational purposes, and would like to thank you for the assistance you have all given me to date.
    I might even start the odd Toughie now!

    • gazza
      Posted March 16, 2012 at 10:03 pm | Permalink

      Hi DogDoctor – welcome to the blog. Well done! Now that you’ve delurked we hope to hear a lot more from you.

    • andy
      Posted March 16, 2012 at 10:28 pm | Permalink

      I’m only a couple of years behind you DD, This site has been such a help to me. Todays Toughie is very do-able, look for the anagrams to help you find a way in…

    • Posted March 16, 2012 at 11:37 pm | Permalink

      Welcome D.D.
      I only delurked a few days ago and now I can’t stop posting!

  35. Posted March 16, 2012 at 10:14 pm | Permalink

    Seems to have been a bit on the quiet side on here this week – now we know why perhaps!

  36. shad2angel
    Posted March 17, 2012 at 8:46 am | Permalink

    Mary testing under another emil address, living in hope!

    • Posted March 17, 2012 at 8:47 am | Permalink

      You’ve made it!

      • mary
        Posted March 17, 2012 at 8:49 am | Permalink

        seems like I’ve had a change of identity though :-) good to be back thanks for all advice

  37. mary
    Posted March 17, 2012 at 8:48 am | Permalink


    • mary
      Posted March 17, 2012 at 8:49 am | Permalink

      now I’m not sure which one I am?

      • mary
        Posted March 17, 2012 at 8:50 am | Permalink

        ok now for the crossword see you later :-)

  38. Posted March 17, 2012 at 9:47 am | Permalink

    Playing catchup from yesterday as I didn’t have time to look at any puzzles. Agreed on the general sentiments re: 4d – anyone can make a mistake at 6d (at least it wsn’t a river!). Also agreed that the rest of the puzzle more than made up for the above – particularly the superb 27a. Thanks to gazza and Giovanni.

  39. Tantalus
    Posted March 17, 2012 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

    Well done not providing a piccy for 25d. I always find your lift and separate images very distracting, and Mrs T says that you are just taunting the male population.