DT 26828 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26828 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26828 (Hints)

Big Dave’s 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           Dam childishly associated with large beaver perhaps (6)
A childish way of saying mother (dam) is followed by L(arge) to give, for example (perhaps), a beaver

5a           Bid competitively totally in control of clubs (8)
A verb meaning to bid competitively in whist or bridge is created by putting a word meaning totally around (in control of) C(lubs)

23a         Warship to press young man rounding cape (4-4)
You need a word for ‘to press’ as in clothes, followed by a word for a young boy with c(ape) in-between to give you a term for a warship [thanks Mary]

26a         May Trotter get a support? — he famously crashed one of these (10)
A charade of a verb meaning may, the name of Rodney Trotter’s brother, the A from the clue and a female support garment gives this light fitting that famously crashed to the floor (or at least a synonym of it!)

28a         A queen wearing red beads (6)
Put A from the clue and the Latin abbreviation of for Queen inside a word meaning red or reddish to get these beads


2d           Block trouble outside Nevada (5)
This block used by a blacksmith is created by putting some trouble around (outside) the abbreviation of for Nevada

3d           Lisa perhaps, right in fashion like a queen (9)
… that’s the Lisa in the Musée du Louvre in Paris!

14d         Executed heretic from central European country (9)
A verb meaning executed is followed by a person who follows the heretical doctrine that Christ was not consubstantial (qv) with God the Father, but only the first and highest of all finite beings, to get a central European

20d         Outside south-east, be mother superior type (6)
Around (outside) the abbreviation of south-east put a verb meaning to be mother by serving the tea to get a superior type

24d         Clothes-horse more attractive without top (5)
Another name for a clothes-horse is derived by dropping (without top) the initial F from an adjective meaning more attractive

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: {Kris} + {tougher} + {begins} = {Christopher Biggins}

152 comments on “DT 26828 (Hints)

  1. Fairly straightforward affair today. Best clue for me by far was 26a. Had to double check spelling for 28a, as there are several options for the abbreviation for queen. Thanx to the Compiler and to BD as usual.

      1. Oh I see now, it is a and a one letter abbreviation for queen in a word for reddish and not a two letter abbreviation for queen inside a word for reddish! Duh

  2. I didn’t find this straightforward at all – a great deal to think about before writing in with this one. I did like 26a and 20d. Thanks to the Saturday Mysteron and BD too.

          1. I’ve been here all day where have you been? Got to go now, a cause to promote!!! no flute tooting tonight, we have been banned!! just off to fight the cause, back later :-)

              1. Very complicated and upsetting Kath apparently our Parish Priest (of one year) has decided in an underhand manner that “it isn’t his thing” after our group has been performing liturgical music in our Church for over twenty years, he has consistently left us out of various services, when challenged on it, he asserted his ‘rights’ as Parish priest and told us if we didn’t like it we should leave, there is uproar at the moment and yesterday evening I stood outside handing out leaflets with the explanation, so much more to it but too complicated to go into, such a sad time for our music group :-(

                1. Today’s “Quote of the Day” is pertinent:

                  Charles Lamb (1775-1834)

                  “Here cometh April again, and as far as I can see the world hath more fools in it than ever.” :smile:

                2. Sorry to hear about this Mary, playing muisc in a group has many benefits for the participants and it is sad to hear that one person has potentially destroyed something that is is essentially not doing anyone any harm

                3. Considering declining congregations it soundsas if this Vicar is beingvery foolish.should not the Bishopintervene?

  3. Done all but two, a hint for 23a would be very helpful, it’d give me a checking letter for 20d

    1. Hi sheepdog, this is one I have done! you need a word for ‘to press’ as in clothes, followed by a word for a young boy with c in front to give you a term for a warship

        1. Lucky you I still have a ln way to go on this one, I blame all the interruptions here today! The weather here is back to miserable, grey and cold :-(

          1. … because of the “C” – thought that we weren’t supposed to put any of the answer in a hint. Now I’ve done it too so I’ll be joining you there!!

              1. Damn!! You mean Mary and I can’t go to the naughty corner – now I’ll have to go up the rather chilly garden and do more useful stuff. :sad: Not nice here today.

    2. It is a type of ship – press as in decrease clothes, then the abbreviation for cape (1) and a young boy (3). Then look up your result in the dictionary.

  4. Wiki has it as one word.

    And I didn’t think of ‘be mother’ as in serves tea until I got the checking letter. Thanks

              1. Abbrevuation? Must learn to type!

                As you can see procrastination is the thief of doing the gardening

  5. A much more challenging Saturday puzzle!
    Well done setter. Many nicely-constructed, but fair, clues.
    Particularly enjoyed 1,26,17 and 22

    1. Digby, this week may be your best chance to win the much coveted “DT Fountain Pen”. Just before the price of stamps go up!

      Good Luck!

      1. I’ll share it with you if I win !!
        Of course, you can always get in a stock of stamps before they go up – they still work.
        Book of 100 currently £34 – next month £50

  6. Has this leaked through from next week’s Toughies? This is not a “usual” Saturday but will keep me out of mischief while Mrs S visits the Wicked Witch of the North (mother-in-law). Only joking…maybe

  7. Wow, I found this really hard today and can’t say I enjoyed it very much, I needed all the help going to finish it, books, gadgets, hints (thanks Dave) nothing I really liked, except maybe 22d? good luck everyone, perservation definitely the name of the game today, is it worth it? well IMHO it is always good to be able to finish :-D

    1. I totally agree with you, Mary. When I saw Wayne’s comment above, I wondered whether he’d completed the same crossword. I thought the answer to 26a was so contrived it was awful and, factually, the clue was incorrect – it was a chandelier.

      1. You are quite right!
        I formally withdraw my accolade for that clue at #5, but I still thought this was a better-than-average Saturday experience.

          1. It’s all in the eyes of the beholder Mary, or does one taste meat or poison?
            But it is a healthy situation that we can agree to differ.

  8. I’ve finished now – really enjoyed it and found it a huge challenge – definitely anything but straightforward for me. Far too many good and clever clues to write them all down – I’d be here all day and should go and do more stuff in the garden before I reward myself with a look at the NTSPP. Can’t resist putting just a few of my favourites – 11 and 18a and 7 (took me ages – stupid – have seen something like that before) 8, 17 and 20d. With thanks to the setter and Big Dave – and in advance to anyone who can explain my answer to 14d – he certainly is a central European but I don’t understand the first bit of the clue.

    1. 14d executed = the first four letters Kath, the last five if you look up the word are some kind of heretic

      1. Thanks Mary – another “Gnomey” moment there – saw it as soon as I’d pressed send. How didn’t I see it before? :roll:

      2. My old English master would have held his head at the use of the first four letters for executed and would have told us that that word applies only to curtains and pictures!
        That said, I thought that this was an enjoyable puzzle (especially 20d) and a definite improvement.

        1. Ironically, in ‘Why can’t the English?” from My Fair Lady, which is about how badly we speak, ‘Enry ‘Iggins makes that very mistake

        2. I second that Gazza – I guess that English is not taught as thoroughly nowadays as it was when I was young.
          I finished my secondary education in Scotland and the English teacher berated me soundly for dropping initial aitches as in ‘alifax, ‘ull etc as we would say in Yorkshire.

      3. I take issue with the verb. I was always taught that the past tense of this verb when used to denote an execution was a six letter word.

        1. Same here – with an ‘a’ and ending in ‘ed.’ Is there a ‘compiler’s licence,’ similar to poetic licence, which allows the complier to use ‘bad English’?

  9. Phew that was a real tester, completed I think.
    23a a bit iffy, but fun. liked 22d.
    Who says Editors don’t listen, call for science references yesterday, and one pops up today.
    Thanks to the compiler, and to BD.
    As it’s miserable outside, going to tackle the NTSSP while shouting at the wireless (Any Questions).

      1. This will be the first one I have fail ed to complete in over a year, normally they are a bit of a challenge but this is something else again.

      1. Quite right, not going to waste any more time over this. I hope the experts enjoy it.

        1. I’m far from being an expert Brian and have to admit to not enjoying this one today, sometimes a crossword is tough but can still be very enjoyable, each to his or her own, horses for courses maybe? we have come to expect a gentler one than this most Saturdays I think, it is no fun when it takes more than 3 hours and still not completed (speaking personally), although when I started these almost 3 years ago now, it used to take me most of the day off and on and even then I didn’t always finish them, so I should be pleased really, maybe we expect too much of ourselves, after all we are all of different soving abilities :-)

        2. Brian – I’m not an expert by any stretch of the imagination but I really enjoyed this one. I did think it was difficult but, as BD has already said, it’s not meant to be easy. Just keep trying – get the big long one in the middle which gives you quite a few first letters of other clues. On my first read through today I think I probably only got about four or five answers.

  10. Never mind the crossword, I can’t even understand the hints! 3d and 14d make no sense to me, the hint that is, the crossword clue could be in Chinese!

    1. 3d The Lisa we want here is as Dave says the one that hangs in the Louvre, this is followed by a word for ‘in fashion’ 4 letters with ‘r’ from right inside to give a word meaning ‘like a queen’

      1. Sorry the ‘r’ goes before the four letter word for ‘in fashion’ not inside it!

    2. 14d as Dave says is a four letter word for executed as on a scaffold, followed by a five letter word for a certain type of heretic, personally I had never heard of this but if you get the first bit you will solve it :-)

      1. I studied Medieval history (so long ago that it was modern history at the time), I do remember these heretics vaguely, (there were so many different heretics in those days), can’t remember what the doctine they held to upset the Church, I must go and dig out my old notes from the cupboard under the stairs.

  11. Struggling with bottom left corner today.
    Any hints for 18, 21, 27a and 17, 22d much appreciated. Also can’t think of anything that would make sense for 11a with the letters I already have in (4).
    Please help!

    1. see 17 below
      18 this is a double definition, in the first ‘fighting’ it would be 2,6, i.e if forces are fighting they are this, in the second meaning sloth it is one word
      21 you need a three letter word for a woolly surface, as on a snooker table, followed by a three letter word for relation, to give you a small cloth often used at the dinner table

      1. 27 an anagram of in Greene – indicated by novel gives you a word for masterminded
        22d how to do this without being sent to naughty corner, just think of what you use to get into your vehicle it sounds exactly like a material with military associations, broadcast is the homophone indicator

        1. My homonym of 22d will no longer allow me to lock my car – don’t really know why – a real pain in the **** as I suspect that it’s not insured unless it’s locked. Oh dear! :sad: but life is too short to worry unduly about it. :smile:

    2. Hello Emily,
      18…..doing nothing
      21…the smallest piece of clot h you use…well a gent’s is bigger
      27a……is an anagram
      17d needing a hint myself
      22d sounds like what you need to get into a vehicle
      hope that helps

    3. My abject apologies Emily, I gave you the wrong hint for 21a and that was why we were stuck on 17d . So sorry!

  12. I agree that this was quite challenging but we (a joint effort today) managed to complete it except for 17d ,which seems to have presented no difficulty for anyone else, but neither one of us can see it. Any hint would be greatly appreciated. I loved 26a although it wasn’t strictly accurate. Being reminded of it gave us a good laugh this morning so thanks to the setter.

    1. Hi Annidrum for 17 you need the chemical symbol for salt inside a type of tree to give you the highest point

      1. Great, got this now too! Have also got 18a, had written the wrong letter at the end 3d for some bizarre reason (fuzzy Saturday brain?)!!! Just 21, 22 & 27 to go.

  13. Hi Emily

    11a you need a four letter word for ‘make slight’ as in insult, followed by a four letter word for sharp sound which together give you a word for eating noisily

  14. Can’t think what all the fuss is about regarding 23a. Pretty well-known naval history, I thought. When it was realised that wooden ships weren’t very good at withstanding impact – with or without explosives – they decided to wrap them in metal; that’s how they got the name. It was some time later they discovered that the vessel would still float if they did away with the timber!

    1. I’m sure that it’s easy for anyone with knowledge of naval history but for the rest of us it was quite tricky! Certainly took me a while.

  15. Sorry, forgot my manners. Very enjoyable today although it did take a little longer than usual. Thanks to setter and BD.

  16. Done,,,, a few doh moments on the last answers especially 22d and 21a. Now for a cuppa……

  17. Can someone please explain 9a, I think have an answer but don’t know why. A big thank you to all the comments so far and Mary too. I wouldn’t have got this far without them and still have a fair way to go. Thanks Big Dave for your hints, but I have to say I’m not on the wavelength today.

    1. If you have the right answer you have an expression meaning without favour, fairly. An anagram (storm) of HAVEN inside a word meaning finished.

        1. Thanks Mary, only 13a to go now and feeling silly that I can’t get it, there are not too many letters to choose from but perhaps I need a glass of red to oil the brain cells :D

          1. 13a King Henry the First has returned outside (4)
            The definition is king. Reverse (returned) has outside the first (letter) of Henry.

            1. Thank you Gazza, would not have got that in a month of Sundays and have only had two glasses of red :-)

  18. Hello to anyone who remembers I used to exist.
    After much perservation I managed all bar 21a/22d and needed the hints previously posted, so thanks for those.
    How’s life on the naughty step? Any decent cake there recently?

    1. Hi Don welcome back, no we’ve not been on the naughty step lately nobody seems to be cooking!! Kath did try to get me there today but without success :-)

  19. Tricky but quite good fun today … much better than yesterday. Got stuck on 21a and 22d (which is funny – thanks for clue Mary).

  20. Enjoyed solving this puzzle on a sunny but very chilly Saturday afternoon over here in The Low Country..

    I liked : 11a, 18a, 23a, 26a, 3d, 8d, 17d & 22d.

  21. Would some kind soul help me with 25a just so that I can close down that corner. My mind is a blank today

      1. Many thanks Hrothgar/Derek, I knew it of course but I didn’t think it was spelt that way

  22. Very challenging for a Sat but thoroughly enjoyable.
    Some really brilliant clues eg 20d and diversionary tactics eg 1a.
    Thanks Mysteron and BD.

  23. More difficult than usual, have only just finished though admittedly didn’t start until later than usual. It’s funny, i saw 5d and 17d immediately and had to resist writing them in at a friend;s house. Some of the others which other people found straightforward I struggled with.
    Don’t see 8d except for the depression bit. Thanks for hints.

    1. Hi anncantab,

      8d is a word meaning someone who owns an estate – to get there you need a four letter word for family and chop its head off – then you want a six letter word for something that makes you feel low.

  24. One to go and I’ve trawled the comments and no-one else seems to have mentioned it! Help for 19a please!

    1. It is a type of banking system – money transferred straight from one bank accoucnt to another – a simple reversal of a thre letter word meaning fix followed by a zero (1)

      1. Doh! It’s so easy when you know the answer! I even had a ****bank account for many years before it was taken over by Alliance and Leicester! Thanks.

    1. Welcome to the blog Judy B.

      7d – The young of a horse (Arabs’) gives the name of some guns (a brand name for the manufacturer).

      10a – The name of a wild cat is a homophone (sounds the same as) a word for bonds (as in things that join things together).

      1. But there’s that darned apostrophe again. Since the homophonic synonym is plural, shouldn’t there be no apostrophe in Bond’s?

        1. Never trust the cryptic crossword compiler’s punctuation.

          Commas, full stops, ellipses, capital letters, apostrophes and exclamation marks are often used in an attempt to mislead you.

          I’m sure there must be some “rules” but I don’t know them.

          1. Thanks for your reply. The first thought that came to me when I read the clue and saw Bond’s was 007, and that created a block against solving the clue!

            1. There are rules, believe it or not.

              10a Bond’s spoken of wild cat (4)

              This should be read as “Bond is spoken of wild cat” and the homophone of “bond is” is “aaaa is” which is abbreviated to aaaa’s.

  25. I have used an iPad for the first time today to complete and submit a prize crossword. I’m new at this iPad. Could anyone tell me how a prize crossword is accessible on the iPad before I can no longer get at it.

    1. Welcome to the blog Mike. I don’t know how long the crossword remains on the iPad. If anyone has experience of using the Telegraph app on the iPad, could you let us know.

  26. I enjoyed todays puzzle. Several of the clues took some thinking and 9a and 23a were my favourites. Thanks

  27. Thanks to the setter & Big Dave for the hints. What a super puzzle, really enjoyed it. Favourites were 26a, 3 8 14 17 20downs. Last in was 22d. 8d was a real penny drop moment. Lots of clever clues. Weather back to normal in Central London.

  28. 10a took an age – had the wrong big cat! Thanks to all for the hints, I finished this one(very rare occurrence) so might award myself a glass of vino to celebrate!

  29. A week without access to the crossword so I felt a tad rusty attempting this on the way back from Heathrow. Just polished it off. 26a was very clever as was 22d. A quiet day for me today!

  30. Re 10a…..are we looking for a homophone of bond or the cat, the checking letters are the same in both

  31. Still don’t understand why there’s an apostrophe on ‘Bond’s’ (10across)

    1. Hi Parkkeeper – welcome to the blog.
      The homophone would work with or without the apostrophe (in the former case being a sound-alike of ‘bond’ plus the ‘S) but the apostrophe’s needed to make the surface meaningful – I presume that Bond is James Bond – whereas ‘Bonds spoken of wild cat’ doesn’t mean anything.

  32. 15a def is a liking for. The single letter abbreviation for piano followed by a word meaning to delight or charm.
    22d If you say out loud the colour of a military uniform it sounds like something you use to get in a car
    16d A double definition – first bit is what you are if you take drugs (so I understand) and the second bit is a group of students, the whole meaning aristocratic

  33. Late as usual. Really struggled. Thx for all the hints. One of the advantages of tackling it later.

  34. The fact that I am commenting Monday am signifies a busy weekend. Thought this was brilliant. It really is a wavelength issue (looking at the comments above). The clues and synonyms are so good that you can work out the answer or even get the answer and then work out why! Last one in fir me was 20d. I thought of the right word which fitted but not having BRB to hand in bed I associate the answer with a bloke who fancies himself. The tea reference was clever. Didn’t get that my favourite was 8d. Double hint I thought for family with a Laird being Scottish. 3d took a time. I was thinking Minelli not the one with the enigmatic smile!

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