DT 26864 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26864 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26864 (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.

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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           Part of goal to annoy lawyers (8)
Split the part of a goal that is between the posts as (5,3) and it could mean to annoy lawyers

… and here for all you Chelsea fans is why 1 across is there!

ARVE Error: need id and provider

16a         Professor has a hand in this couple having abusive relationship (5,3,4)
This is a cryptic definition of a seaside attraction about an abusive relationship which is performed by a “professor” using glove puppets and involves the answer,  Toby the dog,  some sausages, a policeman and anyone else I’ve forgotten – once performed by the original “professor”, Giovanni Piccini, in the early 19th century

23a         Bring up without favour for the major part (8)
This verb meaning to bring up from the ground is created from most (for the major part)  of a word meaning without favour

26a         Singer otherwise ‘Mr Silent’ (8)
This itinerant medieval singer comes from an anagram (otherwise) of MR SILENT


2d           Take back regular payment retaining accountant (6)
A verb meaning to take back an opinion or belief is derived by putting a regular payment for accommodation around (retaining) the abbreviation for a Scottish chartered accountant

7d           He was employed in a gory line (9)
An obvious but poorly indicated anagram of A GORY LINE gives a soldier loosely described by the whole clue

15d         One produces great paintings — ‘Mountain range endlessly shrouded in cloud’ … (8)
This person who creates great paintings on walls (Banksy perhaps!) is derived by putting most of (endlessly) a Russian mountain range inside (shrouded in) a fine cloud

22d         Vehicle carrying a weight of gems (5)
Put a horse-drawn vehicle around (carrying) the A from the clue to get a measure of weight used for gems

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: {van} + {tay} + {earn} = {vingt-et-un}

73 comments on “DT 26864 (Hints)

  1. Another tough but fair puzzle for me with a couple of deadends which as always I bumbled down. saved by the anagrams.

  2. What a lovely quick crossword pun. It comes under the heading, I wish I had thought of that myself.

  3. I found this a bit of a struggle and needed my Chambers to finish. Even so, I’m not sure I have 23a right. I spent a long time looking for horses at 10a. The anagrams were a great help, with 13a being my clue of the day, followed by 17d. Many thanks to the compiler and to Big Dave as ever. :-)

  4. Hi Franny – 23a was my last one to go in. Nicely misleading, with the definition being the first two words (if I’m correct).
    A good challenge – about right for a Saturday I think.
    And, yes, the Quickie pun was great!
    Thanks team.

  5. I’m about halfway through and thoroughly enjoying it. However, now hit the buffers a bit

      1. Certainly in the SW corner Dave, I can’t get 23a even with your hint. I did not think that I was thick but I may be wrong

        1. If I tell you it is ‘free from favour’ as in impartial or unconcerned, does that help.

          1. You know, CS, I had considered that and rejected it because I was thinking up from the ground to whateever is above the ground. Thanks. Doh

  6. Yes, well I’ve just tried putting my solutions on line and find that I have got 23a wrong after all — largely because I mis-spelled that instrument — but I would never have understood the answer without the hint, so thanks again BD. Didn’t like the clue anyway. My last in was 15d.

  7. The SW corner was an absolute beast – especially 23a. Definitely 4* difficulty for me and don’t have any favourites at the moment. Will see if anything grows on me as I sort out the review. Thanks to setter and hintgiver as usual.

    1. My limit is normally 2/3* but apart from your help on 23a I finished. However, I got 9a because of the checking letters but I don’t understand it. Can you help?

      1. You have the IVR code for Switzerland (2) take that out of the word you have and then reverse the remaining letters.

  8. I started off VERY slowly and thought that I was going to have trouble but everything eventually fell into place. There were several that I had answers for but had trouble unravelling – 11, 23 and 25a and 20d – I think I would have spelt it with a “Y” as the second letter. Still not quite sure about 16a – I think what I have is right but can’t quite see why.
    Lots of really good clues – 6 and 10a and 4, 14 and 15 were my favourites.
    I assume that this is not Cephas but thanks to whoever set it and to BD.
    Lovely day – sunny and breezy although not very warm – off up the garden. :smile:

  9. That was an excellent puzzle. Agreed on the SW corner. Thanks to the setter and to BD.

  10. Thanks BD – now there’s a hint for 13a. I didn’t understand how the Professor got in there!

      1. He didn’t really forget! Just felt the hint was getting a bit long.

        The Baby
        Joey the Clown
        The Crocodile
        The Skeleton
        The Doctor
        Hector the Horse
        Pretty Polly
        The Hangman (a.k.a. Jack Ketch)
        The Devil
        The Beadle
        Mr. Scaramouche

  11. I’ve read the previous comments with interest and no-one has had problems with 12a – unlike me! Despite having all the checking letters in place, I couldn’t see the answer so I amused myself by going into town to do some shopping and, when I came back, I saw the answer straight away. However, I had no problems whatsoever with the SW corner…

      1. You’ll kick yourself. The first bit means to reserve or engage in advance; the second bit is simply the letters than mean ‘that is’. The definition is a cryptic one of someone who’s living depends on people being betters.

  12. The brain was not working this morning – I have finally finished after seemingly gazing at this for hours since 10ish (with one brief trip to shops) – penny suddenly dropped and did about 10 answers easily – a definite D’oh for many of the clues – phew, need to lie down in a darkened room (or, better idea, go and have a pint or three of Directors!)

        1. Do you mean dire weather in general or have you had dire weather today? We’ve had a lovely day – not what I would call warm but mainly sunny and, above all, DRY!

          1. We have had a beautiful day today – not only did all the washing dry but I also sat in the garden solving crosswords in the sun (although I will admit that some of the solving was behind closed eyelids (I started very early yesterday and am still catching up on my sleep) :D

  13. I also str5uggled with the SW corner.. and even hints did not help :( After a bit of sweeping and a trip to feed some cats, it all became clear! I enjoyed it ! Thanks to the setter and for the hints!! Off to attack the weeds which have had far too much fun in this wet weather- some sunshine is such a delight! ;)

  14. Just finished it without hints! My brain must be benefiting from this sunny day. Enjoyed this one, and favourite clue was 12a. Must agree with Big Dave about 7d. No anagram indication really at all. A slightly messy clue I thought. Just one query. Pretty sure I have 25a correct, but whilst I can see it means “attitude”, what’s the relevance of “in which is example”. Can anyone enlighten me please?

    1. Put IN in front of your answer. ‘Employ’ is in the Chambers Dictionary Wordgame Companion list of anagram indictors

      1. Two of the really great minds not only think alike but also at exactly the same time! :smile:

    1. Not Cephas – it is the turn of the Mysteron this week – Cephas commented on the Quick pun earlier on this morning.

      1. My apologies to the mysteron, or perhaps congratulations as it was as good as Cephas in my humble opinion. I enjoyed it anyway.

  15. After a couple of goes at this on and off I am down to five clues left.

    Thanks to Big Dave yet again for your hints and to the setter too.

    I think I have an answer for 6a but am not getting the wordplay.

    I would welcome further help on 5d, 20d, 10a and 19a … Pretty please :-)

    1. 6a an Islamic rank – insert A (containing a) into a word meaning cut or trim and follow the result with the one letter abbreviation used to mean hospital.
      5d Break or stop followed by craft in the handicraft sense
      20d A share that was given to the church of someone’s income – a musical note followed by THE from the clue
      10a a tiny bit – insert a biting creature into a boy (I have two such ‘boys’)
      19a is a homophone (delivered) so say your answer for 22d out loud

      1. Thanks Crypticsue, your clarification on 6a confirmed my thinking and your further help (I have now been hit on the head by pennies dropping), has enabled me to finish so I shall now enjoy the first glass of the day :D

  16. Another very enjoyable xword. Guessed what 25a was but didn’t understand why until reading the comments above, so thanx to CS & BD for that. Agree with comment(s) regarding Quickie pun, very clever. Definate **** for enjoyment. Thanx to Compiler and to BD for the blog.
    p.s. Beautiful weather down here on the south coast.

  17. Very late start today but finished now. Quite tough I thought but enjoyable. Struggled with top left for ages and didn’t really like 1a but did like 10a.

  18. My head and shins hurt immensely, (nothing broken or re-broken) was totally stuck in another corner than anyone has commented on. Checking letters et al could I see18d, could I heck, and was convinced I’d gone hopeleesly awry with the acrosses. Thanks setter and BD as ever

  19. Well it took a while but finally cracked it. Favourite is 22d because the number seems so apt. As ever thanks for the hints, particularly for the SW corner

    1. adam,
      Your comment went into moderation because you used a different (full name) alias from your previous forename only. Both should work from now on.

  20. Tricky but fun :grin:

    3*/4* for us but maybe it’s because we did it after dinner and some wine – ‘some’ wine meaning anything more that two glasses! Very drunk

  21. Solved this one late in the evening.

    Liked : 6a, 21a, 25a, 4d, 15d & 17d. At first thought 16a a shade weak but BD’s remarks are clarifying.

    A somewhat homophonic job in places.

  22. I’m totally in the dark regarding 12a and 10a, hints considered. SW corner was tough but I think I am a tad slow with the rest, even with the hints. By the way, this is a good way to spend my Saturdays…even though I should be gardening…

      1. Robert
        Please avoid hints that start with words like “think”.

        By all means say “someone dependent on his betters at the racetrack”

  23. Late starting this and haven’t got very far! However, as wild and wet here in Edinburgh, will have another go at it after breakfast.

    Then……there’s always todays one as well!

    1. 8d Life cut short in crop I treated producing high output (8)
      Put LIF(E) inside an anagram (treated ) of CROP I to get a word meaning producing high output

  24. Omg thank you it has been bugging me since yesterday
    Love the blog and whilst i dont post very often always read on a saturday
    Thank you

  25. I didn’t have the time to look at this one until late this morning. Not the normal gentle Saturday fare, and quite tough in parts. Took me twice as long to complete as today’s puzzle.
    Thanks to setter, and to BD.

  26. Thanks to the mysteron & Big Dave for the hints. Enjoyed it, but am fining it very tricky. despite reading the hints & blog, I still can’t get 21a & 23 a. Any help would be most welcome, but please don’t end up in Naughty Corner.

  27. Needed lots of help on this one – thanks to BD, CS, and Bill Gates (MS Word thesaurus). It seems to a bit tougher than usual for a Saturday puzzle. Hopefully, Rufus will be kind to us tomorrow.

  28. I struggled with sw corner too…23a and even 16a until I resorted to Dave. I liked several clues particularly 6a and 12a thanks.

  29. Sunday night and only just finished Saturday’s!! Mind you, have had visitor and been very busy. REALLY struggled with this one – partic SW corner! – and have finished only with hints and comments – so thank you all very much. Fas wer 17d and 10a (once the penny had droped!)

    1. Read Dave’s hint and then read my explanations to Collywobbles somewhere up above this lot and see if that helps.

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