DT 26869 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26869

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26869

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment **

There seemed to be a lot of clues in this puzzle where we have to chop off a leading or trailing letter and I didn’t enjoy it as much as I normally do on Fridays. Let us know your opinion.
If my hint is not good enough to give you an answer then you can reveal it by highlighting the spaces between the curly brackets under the clue. More information on how to do this if you are using a mobile device can be found in the FAQ.

Across Clues

9a  Fragrance brought about by ‘glamor’ (American) (5)
{AROMA} – a fragrance is hidden backwards (brought about by) in the clue.

10a  All energy will get dissipated in the normal run of things (9)
{GENERALLY} – an anagram (will get dissipated) of ALL ENERGY gives us an adverb meaning in the normal run of things.

11a  Firm has obligation to entertain top lady in camp (7)
{COTERIE} – Giovanni has used ‘top lady’ for Her Majesty before. String together an abbreviated firm or business and an obligation or constraint and then insert (to entertain) her initials. The result is a small faction or camp.

12a  Nearly all coppers admitting it would be prudent (7)
{POLITIC} – put the more formal term for coppers, without the final E (nearly all), around (admitting) IT.

13a  Like a big boom, so pleasant when it finishes prematurely! (5)
{SONIC} – a description of the boom made by an aircraft reaching  Mach 1 comes from SO followed by an adjective meaning pleasant without its final E (finishes prematurely).

14a  Tomb at sea? It could be if it capsizes! (9)
{STEAMBOAT} – you need to read the whole clue for the definition of this semi-all-in-one. It’s an anagram (it could be) of TOMB AT SEA.

16a  Doctor to approach — I itch — he should know all about that! (11,4)
{HIPPOCRATIC OATH} – an anagram (doctor) of TO APPROACH I ITCH produces something that a doctor should be fully aware of.

19a  Country’s left with inadequate notion — possible result of election (9)
{LANDSLIDE} – this is a possible election result. String together a) a synonym for country, b) the ‘S from the clue, c) L(eft) and d) a notion or thought without its final A (inadequate).

21a  Conclude wearing what an ethical person wouldn’t wear, as they say (5)
{INFER} – this is a verb to conclude or deduce. If you split it (2,3) it sounds like (as they say) how you would not expect to see an ethical person.

23a  One has to exist with exceptional rain in part of Europe (7)
{IBERIAN} – a description of part of Europe where the rain is supposed to stay mainly on the plain is built from a) I (one), b) a verb to exist and c) an anagram (exceptional) of RAIN.

25a  Goods about to be packed in box (7)
{FREIGHT} – to get these transported goods insert (to be packed) a preposition meaning about or concerning inside a verb to box.

27a  See new singer get a word of welcome (9)
{GREETINGS} – an anagram (see new) of SINGER GET is a word of welcome.

28a  Express an opinion that’s absolute (5)
{UTTER} – double definition.

Down Clues

1d  Brandy — not quite enough for the month (4)
{MARC} – this is a type of brandy made from the pressed grape pulp, skins, and stems that remain after the grapes have been crushed and pressed to extract most of the juice for wine. Its name is derived from the French verb to walk or trample (a clue as to how the grapes used to be crushed). Here it’s almost (not quite enough for) the name of a month.

2d  Material adding weight to bottom of bed (6)
{COTTON} – an imperial measurement of weight follows (adding … to the bottom of, in a down clue) a child’s bed.

3d  Changeable island that gets cold I love — and not just me on my own! (10)
{CAPRICIOUS} – an adjective meaning changeable or inconsistent is constructed from a) an island near Naples, b) C(old), c) I, d) O (love, zero) and e) a pronoun indicating the involvement of at least two people.

4d  Monster appears — ship therefore capsizes (6)
{OGRESS} – put together the usual abbreviation for a steamship and an adverb, from latin, meaning therefore, then reverse (capsizes) the lot to reveal a monster. This is the second appearance of capsize as an indicator – here it signals a reversal whereas in 14a it indicated an anagram.

5d  Article that’s a nuisance crushing a foot (8)
{ANAPAEST} – this was a new word for me, although fairly easy to get from the checking letters and wordplay. It’s a foot (the poetic sort) consisting of two short or unstressed syllables followed by a long or stressed syllable. Start with an indefinite article which is followed by A and a nuisance containing (crushing) a second A.

The Assyrian came down like a wolf on the fold
And his cohorts were gleaming in purple and gold
And the sheen of their spears was like stars on the sea
When the blue wave rolls nightly on deep Galilee

6d  Alternatively a learner will get a test (4)
{ORAL} – a conjunction meaning alternatively is followed by A and the sign of one learning to drive.

7d  Thunderous character in request for superabundance (8)
{PLETHORA} – the Scandinavian god of thunder goes inside a request or prayer to make a superabundance or excess.

8d  Attractive woman? I nab ‘er, reportedly! (3-7)
{EYE-CATCHER} – this is something that grabs your attention, an attractive woman being an example. It sounds like (reportedly) “I nab ‘er” but using a synonym for nab.

13d  Squeals when catching cold — money lost! (10)
{SCHILLINGS} – a verb meaning squeals or informs on someone to the police contains (catching) a cold or bout of man flu. The result is the old (lost) (but, the way things are going, possibly future also) currency of Austria.

15d  Weapon that could be menacing, uh? (10)
{MACHINEGUN} – I expected to find this weapon as two words (or at least hyphenated) in Chambers but it actually confirms the enumeration in the clue. It’s an anagram (could be) of MENACING UH.

17d  One’s thinking ‘possible swimming site’? Then there’s double hesitation (8)
{PONDERER} – someone who thinks deeply comes from a small body of water (possible swimming site) followed by a double hesitation.

18d  Coming down to be listened to like a king or a queen (8)
{REIGNING} – the definition is like a king or queen and this sounds like (to be listened to) a precipitation (coming down) from the clouds.

20d  Looking after number one, leader set off being mischievous (6)
{ELFISH} – an adjective meaning looking after number one or self-centred loses (set off) its leading S.

22d  Scraps left to be wasted in plane journeys (6)
{FIGHTS} – start with journeys by plane and drop the L (left to be wasted) to leave a verb meaning scraps.

24d  Interested in religious books, I love to collect such (4)
{INTO} – a preposition meaning interested in comes from part of the Bible (religious books) with I and O (zero, love) as containers (to collect such).

26d  Dish from the beginning but not the beginning (4)
{TART} – a synonym for beginning loses its initial letter (not the beginning) to leave a dish.

The clues I liked best today were 23a and 7d. Let us know what floated your boat.

Today’s Quickie Pun: {SEEK} + {WHENCE} = {SEQUENCE}

74 comments on “DT 26869

  1. Sorry for not posting yesterday – was very busy and only got around to looking at yesterday’s today (if that makes sense).

    Another excellent puzzle today I thought with one new word for me and a few old faves that haven’t been seen in a while. 5D has to be my favourite clue today (the one new word for me and not one I expect to see again or ever use) – I always enjoy working out the answer from the clue then finding out its right through Goggle.
    Also enjoyed 16A (very good anagram) and 13D (think I have some of these tucked away somewhere, perhaps they might come in useful again if the Euro goes belly up)

    1. I added it this morning. It’s currently limited to 15 minutes after posting the comment. Glad it seems to be working.

        1. How do we do it?
          I’ve got it – very clever
          Dave, where did that ‘click to edit’ come from

              1. Might also result in less people being sent to the ‘naughty corner’ on weekends if we can edit it out before you spot it ;-)

            1. I think that it’s a really good idea – there have been plenty of times when I wish I hadn’t said something as soon as I’ve pressed the “post comment” thingy! :oops:

            2. Does that mean that it is for your use and not ours Dave and, if it is for our use, how do we access it?

              I’ve got it. Does it come up automatically?

    2. I use Google Chrome which highlights typos as you type them. As BD says: Stop using IE.

      I only posted this comment to try out the new features.

      What happens if a Comment is posted, then receives one or more replies and then the original comment is deleted?

      Or if someone replies to a comment and that comment has completely changed in the interim?

  2. My last one to go, in this gentle puzzle today was 3d (It was the final S that puzzled me for a while).
    Thanks to setter, and to gazza.

    The toughie is not as hard as I thought it was going to be today by Myops, and I enjoyed it.

    1. I think i’ve timed out on the 15-minute rule! Otherwise I would have deleted the stupid bit in brackets. 4 hours after completing the puzzle I now see that at the time I was trying to parse my answer ignoring the letter ‘U’ (hence my confusion).
      Confused? You are now :)

  3. Enjoyed this one today.16a slowed me down as I committed to a rash before the penny dropped.

    Thanks for the review, cleared a few querys I had on wordplay.
    Thanks to compiler for a nice start to day?

  4. Good morning Gazza, I agree with you about chopping off letters etc., this is my least favourite form of clue, there seems to be a lot more of it lately? I had never heard the word for brandy at 1d and had to look it up, a three star for me today because I had to use my books, google and electronic friends! No real favourite for me today and I needed your explaination at 4d, thanks for hints though I only needed them to explain a couple :-)

      1. no collywobs, I have the Sieko Concise Oxford Thesaurus and the Franklin Chambers Crossword Dictionary often when one doesn’t come up with something the other does!!

        1. I’ve got them, on your advice, but I find that the Seiko is much better and performs all functions. It is a bit expensive, however

    1. In the recent past we’ve had both Marc and Grappa as answers in Telegraph puzzles.

  5. This was more than 2* for difficulty for me – I eventually managed to finish without needing the hints, although I always read them anyway, but did get into quite a pickle with some of these clues.
    I’ve never heard of 5d and started off with the pest being an insect but then couldn’t get any further with that one and started thinking differently. I tried to make anagrams out of lots of clues that turned out not to be – oh dear!
    I liked 16, 21 and 23a and 4, 7 and 17d. With thanks to Giovanni and gazza.

      1. Just a comment on the new re-edit system.

        My original comment was to do with Machineguns and/or Machine-Guns – Pommers replied on that subject, and then I changed my original comment completely!

        Sorry, but I don’t think it will work?

  6. A frustrating one for me. I had several guessed right because of the link letters and a vague idea from the clue but didn’t put them in because I couldn’t really “prove them” from the clue until I read the hints. In reality I sort of had it finished but didn’t know why and didn’t have courage of my convictions to put thumb to iPad and enter them.

    So I didn’t enjoy it as much as I normally do but thats probably down to my incompetence rather than anything else.


  7. I agree easier than most friday’s**/***, quite a few old chestnuts present and enough easy clues to help with the hard ones.Worked out 5d from the wordplay and was assuming it was an obscure poetic’foot’-something tells me i may have come across this answer before Anyway good start to the weekend and came across the seasons first asparagus on the way to work two weeks late because of the weather!

  8. Somebody call the cops. Did you see MACHINEGUN MARC in the puzzle? A coded assassination, message. Thanks for the workout, Giovanni

  9. 1.5 * difficulty for me. Can’t decide whether I enjoyed it more than a usual Giovanni or whether I was irriated by the chop off a letter clues. thanks to him anyway for a nice start to Friday morning. Thanks to Gazza too – 23a was a lovely clue, I thought.

    Apart from one word I have never heard of before and probably never will agian, the Myops toughie is enjoyably user-friendly.

  10. I would go along with Gazza’s assessment on both fronts.
    Not as challenging or enjoyable as we have come to expect from The Don – though streets ahead of anything I could ever aspire to create.
    With thanks to the G-Force.
    BTW, haven’t seen Nubian around lately – is he off on leave I wonder?

  11. Thanks to the setter (Giovanni ?) and to Gazza. I’m afraid I didn’t really enjoy this one but you can’t please all the people all the time. 1*/1* for me.

  12. Another minor thought – if we can now edit our comments why would we need to delete them?

    1. Sometimes you might find that an identical comment has just been posted, there are a number of reasons. It’s not mandatory to use it!

  13. Found this more like a 4*, but there again I don’t use any of the assistants that a lot of the other bloggers use, I don’t see the point. I also think the definition of the quick crossword should be altered when it includes examples such as 16A. Thanks for your explanations BD well needed today.

  14. Can’t argue with **/*** today although for some bizarre reason I put Lights for 22d so I struggled for ages with 21a. Machinegun is one word in my book so that’s OK. Would have been one of the easiest Fridays for a while had I not slipped up.

    8d was too good an opportunity to resist I see!

    Many thanks to all.

  15. Did this one in the bar next to my doctor’s place this morning. I’d never heard of the foot but worked out what it was and then pommette refused put it in until we’d got home and had a look in the Book – Oh ye of little faith :grin:

    Agree with Gazza’s comments.

    Thanks to The Don and Gazza

  16. We were on the same wavelength for this one so enjoyed it. Favourite was 7d. Had not heard of 5d but got it from the word play. **/*** thanks to G&G. On route to Blakeney, Norfolk where we are hiring a cottage for a week. Anybody been there?

  17. Hi Dave,
    I normally access the blog on my BBerry and when you first changed over the other week it came up as “Big Dave’s Mobile Crossword” and fit the page perfectly and no need to zoom in on anything and without everything on the sidebar, however over the last couple of days its reverted back to the normal blog view which means I have to zoom in to read it and keep scrolling all over the place, any chance I can have “Big Daves Mobile Crossword” back please?. :D.

    1. Hi Gari, there should be a switch at the bottom of the pages, which will toggle it between mobile view and PC view.

      1. Hi Heno,
        Thanks its actually column view on my BBerry as Ive just discovered, I access the blog normally during the early hours as I work nights and usually do it on my BBerry as my employers computers wont let me access the blog, cheers. :D.

  18. Pleasant change for a Friday puzzle!
    Liked : 11a, 14a, 21a, 23a, 3d, 5d, 13d & 17d.

    Amazed Gazza that 5d was new to you – we had all the poetical feet drilled into us at school when I was a lad!

    Re 16a Zahi Hawass maintains that Hippocrates was preceded by Imhotep the physician to King Zoser re the medical oath!

    1. For 5d I’ll have to use the traditional schoolboy excuse “I must have been away sick when you covered that, sir”.

      1. Gazza!

        Never mind about the poetical feet old lad but keep on giving us the saucy birds – and I don’t mean tweet-tweet!

  19. Sorry to disagree but I thought this is the toughest friday for a long time. Still not even halfway there. Still perservating. Is it aGiovanni? It’s awful.

    1. Just looked up the answer to 5d and I have to say if that’s the standard for today I give up in complete disgust! Even the electronic aids have never heard of this word, what tnext the entire thing in Greek?

  20. Thanks to the setter & Gazza for the review & hints. Found this quite entertaining, but didn’t like 22d. Was beaten by 5d. Had to look it up, never heard of it. Favourites were 16a & 7d. Well done to Strauss on getting a ton.

  21. I actually found this quite easy today although 5d is new to me as was 1d . I liked 23a. Thanks to the 2 G’s.

  22. Finished. 3d was a bit convoluted

    No need to answer my question above, Dave, I can see it now

  23. Struggled to-day but did finally finish without hints. Don’t think I enjoyed it very much – even when a penny dropped I kind of wondered why? and had to sit and work it out – or check the hints for explanations – i.e. 13d and 19a, also 11a which I find very convoluted. However, like someone up above has already said, you can’t please all the people all of the time and I’m just pleased to have completed it. Thanks to Giovanni and Gazza.

  24. 11a was my last to work out, very clever, 5d i’ve seen in GK crosswords, but cant see anything wrong in the wordplay that wouldn’t make it able to solve. Thanks to Don and Gazza

  25. Nothing floated my boat at all, Gazza. Hated all the letter chopping. As for Anapaest, awful word, awful clue. An article that crushed ones’s foot would be more than a nuisance.

  26. A late reply here – I was a bit busy yesterday but not working – 5d finally dropped yesterday and like pommers I left it until I consulted the BRB although I had the word written down and parsed correctly on my paper – was still accused of cheating when I confirmed it though!.
    Thanks to gazza and to Giovanni for a puzzle that I thought was bretty good and enjoyable.

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