DT 26835 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26835

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26835

Hints and tips by Libellule

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

Maybe its because its a Bank Holiday Monday in France too, but I enjoyed this offering from Rufus today. Happy Easter all!

The answer is hidden between the curly brackets.

1.Is covered in bread crumbs and cooked (7)
{BRAISED} – Place IS in an anagram (crumbs) of BREAD is a form of cooking.

5. A grizzly infant? (4,3)
{BEAR CUB} – The emphasis here is on the type of animal that a “Grizzly” is.

9. Saddle and take horse about midnight (5)
{RIDGE} – Take a word for travelling on horseback and place the middle letter of night inside to get the sort of saddle that is a raised land formation between two peaks.

10. Be hesitant, empty and sick at heart (9)
{VACILLATE} – A word that means to cause to be empty has a three letter word for being unwell placed inside, Result another word that means to be indecisive.

11. Errors in field may cause defeats (10)
{OVERTHROWS} – A cricket term that refers to extra runs gained when a player hurls the ball at the wicket keeper for example and misses, also describes the downfall and destruction of a government perhaps.

12. Heroic record set by Olympic finalists (4)
{EPIC} – The definition is heroic. A type of record (disc) and the last two letters of Olympic.

14. Here come dots, dashed! (3,5,4)
{THE MORSE CODE} – An anagram (dashed) of HERE COME DOTS is a mechanism for transmitting messages.

18. Teasing pin-up in circulation lacks taste (12)
{UNAPPETISING} – Another anagram (in circulation), this time of TEASING PIN UP.

21. Number taking turn at party game (4)
{LUDO} – The Roman number for 50, the sort of turn where you reverse direction, and the common crossword word for a party produces a simple board game.

22. Insufficient money for cake (10)
{SHORTBREAD} – The sort of cake that is actually a rich crumbly biscuit made from dough with a large proportion of butter.

25. Converted soul comes to face lions here? (9)
{COLOSSEUM} – An anagram (converted) of SOUL COMES.

26. Gather in great numbers for a service (5)
{AMASS} – A and the celebration of Eucharist in the Roman Catholic Church.

27. Billy’s mates who are good with children? (7)
{NANNIES} – Female goats!

28. Accepts challenges (5,2)
{TAKES ON} – A double definition. To undertake or begin to handle. To oppose in competition.


1. Lawyers open with argument that carries weight (6)
{BARROW} – A three letter term for lawyers as a group, and the another three letter word for an argument is typically a one or two-wheeled vehicle with handles at the rear, used to carry small loads.

2. Having gone off thoroughly confused (6)
{ADDLED} – Double definition. To become rotten (like an egg) or to muddle or confuse.

3. Turkish baths that flout union regulations? (5,5)
{SWEAT SHOPS} – Steam baths could also be factories in which employees work long hours at low wages under poor conditions.

4. A number finished the port (5)
{DOVER} – The Roman numeral for 500 and another word for “at an end” is a Channel port in South East England.

5. Offer support to hospital areas in reverse order (9)
{BACKWARDS} – To provide with financial or moral support, and rooms in hospitals containing multiple patients produces a word that means to go to the rear.

6. Efficient island uprising (4)
{ABLE} – Reverse an Italian island where Napoleon spent his first period of exile.

7. The best player is a defender (8)
{CHAMPION} – Double definition. Someone who wins first place, or a supporter of something.

8. Breaks in knee-length trousers, we hear (8)
{BREACHES} – A sounds like clue (we hear). A word for gaps or openings sounds like a pair of trousers.

13. It enabled Queen Victoria to stick to her post (5,5)
{PENNY BLACK} – First adhesive postage stamp issued in 1840.

15. So good nobody will play you? (9)
{MATCHLESS} – A word that means having no equal could mean that your team can not find any other teams to play against.

16. A host of local supporters (8)
{PUBLICAN} – You would find this host in your local hostelry.

17. Mother angled craftily for a place at Oxford (8)
{MAGDALEN} – MA and an anagram (craftily) of ANGLED is also a college at Oxford University.

19Cycles along quiet winding dales (6)
{PEDALS} – P (quiet) and an anagram (winding) of DALES.

20. The single boy in a family is very much a favourite (4,2)
{ODDS ON} – A betting term that means rated at even money or less to win could (I suppose) if split (3,3) refer to an only boy.

23. Desist from mounting watch? (5)
{REMIT} – A word that means to refrain from exacting a tax or a penalty for example when reversed (mounting) could be also be a chronograph.

24. Wine that sparkles when it rises (4)
{ASTI} – An Italian sparkling wine is a two-letter word for when with IT reversed (rises) added.

The Quick crossword pun: {Polly} + {Titian} = {politician}

61 comments on “DT 26835

  1. I’ve finished the crossword and here in St Mawes it’s raining. The ferry to Falmouth is not running to to adverse weather conditions ‘crew hangover’ so I will just have to stay in bed.

  2. Libellule, thanks for hints and tips not needed today!
    A gentle start to the week, solved without any outside reference, a blue moon occurrence for me.
    Thanks Rufus for a morale raising puzzle, enjoyed your other Monday offering as well.

    Rain and gales forecast for Dover today so trans- Manche plans on hold :(

    1. Unless it is different ‘down the road a bit’ we only have the rain not the forecast high winds!

      1. Rain and the wind gusting to force 6 from the wrong direction at present in 4d.
        Force 9 on the forecast, which would be distinctly unpleasant in a small boat, kettle on and a good book looks like a plan.

        1. I am going for the see if there is a film on TV/get on with knitting project option.

            1. It is indeed – I have the rain gauge out to see how much we actually end up getting today – the cracks in the lawn haven’t closed up yet!

            2. Very typical bank holiday weather but still trying not to complain TOO loudly as everywhere is so dry that the rain is very welcome.

  3. Very nice start to a rainy Bank Holiday, thank you Rufus. Only thing that made me pause was that I usually spell 25a with one S! Thanks to Rufus and Libellue.

    Mr CS says he is too busy and it is too wet for us to go out anywhere interesting so I will just have to devote myself to the other cryptics and my knitting. Hope the weather is better whereever you are.

    1. A nice gentle start to the week – finished last night while watching Great Expectations on PBS – can’t see it holding up for the rest of the week. I concur on the spelling of the venue in 25a – just one ‘S’ for me.

    2. Just checked on Ask.com, in one entry – two spellings are offered – ‘OSS’ or ‘IS’ – oh well, not too late to learn something.

  4. Bit of a curates egg for me. Straightforward bottom half and a distinctly tricky top half. Liked 22a but hated 9a, the use of midnight as one word, ugh! 3 star for dif and 1 star for enjoyment for me. Thx to Libellule for the explanation for 9a.

    1. Whats wrong with mid ni G ht, its a common convention in cryptic crosswords? Clever too.

    2. I thought 9a was great. Blencathra in the Lake District has a number of ridges and is also known as Saddleback.

  5. Agree with Brian . Bottom half dropped in quickly. Top half slower with 9a a very dubious last entry. Liked 20 down though.
    Thank you to Libellule and Rufus.
    Wet,cold and miserable here in Gloucestershire – which gets me out of the gardening and may force a pub lunch. Every cloud……..

  6. Trust me to be different! I did the top half quickly, but struggled a little with the SW corner. An enjoyable and relatively gentle start to the week. Thanks to Rufus and Libellule, although the latter’s help was not required today.

  7. Just drizzly here in Jersey at present though heavier rain is supposedly due later. A nice puzzle with no need to use Libellule’s hints. My only hiccup was 23d, where I had the answer but didn’t understand why until I checked with a dictionary. I have always used the word as a noun, meaning job description, and didn’t realise that, as a verb, it had a different meaning.

    1. I would say it has a different pronunciation with no emphasis in first syllable.

  8. Pleasant, but over a bit soon; can’t give it more than one star for difficulty (can we give half-stars???).

    I liked 14A, 25a and 13D.

    Where are the complaints about the cricket reference in 11A? :-)

    Thanks to all concerned.

    1. No complaints from me about the cricket reference in 11a but only because I hadn’t recognised that that is what it was! Shall I start now?!! :smile:

    2. OK Steve, you’ve talked me into complaining about the cricket clue. Moan moan moan, boring old cricket! Will that do? The thing is that cricket clues are so common that they present no problems, even to those of us who aren’t riveted by a ‘sport’ that revolves around lunch and tea, silly long legs, slips in the gully, and other such bizarre vocabulary!

      1. … and when they’re in they’re probably out or something equally incomprehensible …. :smile:

        1. The Rules of Cricket – An Oldie but a Goldie

          You have two sides, one out in the field and one in.

          Each man that’s in the side that’s in goes out, and when he’s out he comes in and the next man goes in until he’s out.

          When they are all out, the side that’s out comes in and the side that’s been in goes out and tries to get those coming in, out. Sometimes you get men still in and not out.

          When a man goes out to go in, the men who are out try to get him out, and when he is out he goes in and the next man in goes out and goes in.

          There are two men called umpires who stay out all the time and they decide when the men who are in are out. When both sides have been in and all the men have been out, and both sides have been out twice after all the men have been in, including those who are not out, that is the end of the game.

          Maybe, someone should tell Andrew Straus about “silly long legs”

      2. Just to clarify – in cricket a leg can be long, fine, short, short fine, square, deep square or deep backward square, but never silly (that would be daft!).

        1. Silly short leg? Not so much “silly” as “stupid”! That cricket ball hurts!

      3. I was mumbling to myself trying to figure out 11a when Mr A said “it’s a cricketing term” That was it….the wall went up and the blinkers went on!!!

  9. A nice gentle start to the week. My only problem completing this quickly was self inflicted – for some reason I put NT at the end of 10a, instead of TE, that caused a log jam at 8d! All sorted now though. Thanks for the hints though.
    I’m back in wet and windy Sussex for Easter, so instead of the usual Dubai sandstorms, I am suffering the same weather as everyone else – can’t even get in the garden!

  10. I’m sure there is an easy answer, but what is the significance of “supporters” in 16d?

    Lovely to see the steady rain here in Kent – the grass looks better already. Thanks to Rufus for a nice gentle test on the holiday Monday and to Libellule for the review from across what sounds like an impassable Channel.

    1. zofbak,
      Your comment needed moderation because you’ve changed your email address.
      I think supporters just means those who patronise the pub.

  11. A very straightforward crossword today, I thought. The only one that slowed me down was 21a which took me a while to see – I thought that I was “turning a number” and couldn’t quite think of what “UL” might be as a number – how dumb can you get? Lots of really good clues 5, 14, 18 (good thing that it’s not BD or Gazza doing the hints today!) and 27a and 13 and 17d. Thanks to Rufus and Libellule.
    Wet and chilly in Oxford – having a day of dealing with backlog of “house stuff” as it’s too nasty to garden.

  12. Nice pleasant start to the week from Rufus, thanks to him and to Libellule. Very pleasant day here in Fife.

  13. That’s only the second Rufus I’ve been able to solve without the hints and tips. If it stops raining I’ll have a pint to celebrate.

    1. A rufus crossword was the first cryptic I ever completed without any help at all about two years ago, I love his crosswords :-)

      1. .. not sure that i’ve ever heard you say that before, Mary! :smile:
        Hope that you’ve had a good weekend and that the wedding went well.

        1. Yes thanks, everything was fine Kath including the weather, I know it’s awful but I’m glad its over! How did the gardening expedition go?

  14. Don’t normally do crosswords except the DT back page cryptic and, occasionally, make an attempt at the toughie. Today, because it’s wet and chilly and a bank holiday, thought I’d have a go at the Guardian cryptic – stuck on one piddling little four letter answer and it’s going to drive me mad – 10a Harbour transport (4) – I’ve got *e* r. Any help would be really appreciated.

      1. Thanks to both – it really would have driven me mad and I don’t think I’d have got it on my own – was thinking of the wrong kind of harbour! :smile:

    1. Kath, for your information, there is a blog for the Grauniad puzzzles – not as good as the BD blog, of course!


      (I’m struggling to find a blog for the “i” crosswords – even though those chappies on AnswerBank are always very helpful!)

      1. Thanks franco – this is the first one I’ve ever done – really don’t have enough time to get addicted to anything else and in any case I’m sure you’re right about their blog not being as good as the BD one – my loyalties are definitely staying here!

      2. What are “i” puzzles? I’d have assumed that they are “The Independent” but “Indy” is more likely to be that. I’m confused!!

  15. Bon soir Libelulle, late today, have had visitors on and off all day, one grandson is 12 today and they all arrived for pizza about 12.30 ish just as another son and wife were leaving!! we escaped this afternoon just in case of another invasion which we are now expecting tomorrow!!! What a lovely crossword from Rufus, not just cos it was slightly on the easy side but because everything made sense, the readings were good and the clues sharp witty and to the point, I loved it, perhaps my brain is more awake at this time of day, hope everyone has had a lovely holiday weekend and that the sun shines for you all in the coming week, thanks for the hints Libelulle, see you all tomorrow :-)

  16. Thanks to the setter & to Libellule for the review & hints. Found this very straightforward. Favourite was 14a, very enjoyable. Happy Easter, once again typical Bank Holiday weather in Central London.

  17. Despite coming into this rather late I did zoom through it apart from the SW – last in 21a (DOH!) A pleasant distraction from the much needed rain.

  18. I enjoyed this one very much today. Last one in was the ‘stamp’ – I kicked myself when the penny dropped!
    Thanks to Rufus, and to Libellule.
    Back to work tomorrow; these holidays are wonderful, but they do interfere with my normal crossword solving routine :)

  19. Solved this after getting home from my daughters’ and Amsterdam where we saw Journey 2 : The Mysterious Island in 3D.

    Usual fine Monday fare from Rufus.
    Faves : 5a (first in), 14a, 22a, 25a, 3d, 13d, 15d & 16d.

    For 1a I first put in “biscuit” which mucked up progress in the NW corner so took off my French cap and thought in English and locked on to cooked and whisked all away.

    Greetings to all – hope you had a good Easter.

    Pouring down all day in NL so hoping for the May flowers!

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