DT 26888 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26888

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26888

A full review by crypticsue

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

The Saturday Mysteron presented us with a crossword which took me slightly longer to solve, mainly held up by two in the SW corner.  Definitely a crossword for fans  of double definitions.   Thanks to the SM, my favourites are highlighted in blue.

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1a           Applauded striking shot (7,3)
CLAPPED OUT  – An informal adjective meaning shot (to pieces), worn out, of no more use – CLAPPED (applauded) and OUT (on strike).

6a           Tall pine (4)
LONG – a double definition –  an adjective meaning tall, not short  or a verb meaning to yearn or pine for something.

9a           Server of refreshments in the form of Spanish snack selection (5)
TAPAS –  Spanish savoury snacks or appetizers –   TAP (a ‘server’ of refreshments such as water or beer) and AS (in the form of).

10a         Weather forecasters satisfied not wanting frosty conditions (3,6)
MET OFFICE –  The abbreviated form of the home of weather forecasters, the Meteorological Office –  MET (satisfied) OFF (not wanting, disinclined to) and ICE (frosty conditions).

12a         Belief prevalent in Tibet or ancient Iran surprisingly (13)
REINCARNATION –  The Tibetans believe in reincarnation of the soul, as  surprisingly  (well it surprised me anyway!) did  the ancient Iranians; in this clue, surprisingly is used as the anagram indicator to tell us to rearrange OR ANCIENT IRAN.

14a         Chap in high-class railway having expedition (8)
URGENTLY –  Expedition here means done with great speed or promptness.   U (high class) and RLY (a less often seen abbreviation for railway) into which has been inserted a GENT or chap.

15a         Dog getting publicity in e.g. Crufts (6)
SHADOW –  To dog or follow like a shadow –  Insert an AD (advertisement, publicity) into a SHOW (Cruft’s being an example of a show).

18a         Tally’s assembled in the end (6)
LASTLY –   An anagram (assembled) of TALLYS produces LASTLY (in the end, finally).

19a         One waiting for delivery man — about time (8)
COURTIER –  Someone in attendance in a court or palace – simply insert (about) T for time into a COURIER or delivery man.

20a         Computer company yielding venue for raves (8,5)
SOFTWARE HOUSE  – A commercial organization that specializes in the design of computer software –  SOFT (yielding) and WAREHOUSE (a venue, so I understand, for raves or mass gatherings where young people dance), rearranged 8,5.

24a         Episode from lurid teen novel (9)
INTERLUDE  – An anagram (novel) of LURID TEEN makes an episode or period of time different from that which comes before or after.

25a         Dwarf fish (5)
TROLL – Another double definition – An evil-tempered ugly dwarf or to fish with a spinning bait.

26a         Beat back game (4)
GOLF –  A reversal of a verb meaning to chastise with blows gives us a certain Gnome’s favourite pastime.

27a         Comfort king being swallowed by exhausted marine monster (3,7)
SEA SERPENT  –  An enormous marine animal of serpent like form.   Insert into SPENT (exhausted, used up)  EASE (comfort) and R (Rex, King) and split the result 3, 7.


1a           Mention computing etc in church (4)
CITE – To mention, quote or name –  insert IT (computing being Information Technology) into CE (Church of England).

2a           A box having a good American vegetable (9)
ASPARAGUS –  Mr CS and I are currently enjoying daily helpings of this vegetable from our garden – A (from the clue) SPAR (box, fight) A (from the clue) G (good) and US (American).

3a           Bloomer made by climber to hand over roping one in following further down (7,6)
PASSION FLOWER –  A climbing plant with lovely flowers –  PASS ON (hand over) with I (one)  inserted, F (following) and LOWER (further down), split 7, 6.

4d           Clean vermin around the Italian home (8)
DOMICILE –  Another word for a home or dwelling place is derived from DO (clean, tidy) and MICE (vermin) with IL (the Italian word for the) inserted.

5d           Extreme remark (5)
UTTER –  And another double definition –  extreme, total, absolute or remark, speak or pronounce.

7d           I pen rearing antelope (5)
ORIBI –   I don’t ever remember coming across this antelope in a crossword before but the wordplay was very clear –   reverse I and BIRO (the original ballpoint pen) and you get a small South African antelope, also known as a palebuck.

8d           Ancient grassland giving vegetables protection (10)
GREENSWARD  – An archaic term for land covered with grass –   GREENS (vegetables) and WARD (protection or guardianship).

11d         Cleaner that’s got down to work (7,6)
FEATHER DUSTER –   Great clue –  a cryptic definition of a light brush of feathers, down being  soft feathers.

13d         Book trade has short blip in advertising (10)
PUBLISHING –   My last one in –   The trade of publishing books –   PUSHING (advertising, vigorous promotion) with BLI  (short BLIP) inserted.

16d         Return in car to make a point (5,4)
DRIVE HOME –   And another double definition – to use your car to return home or to make completely understood and accepted.

17d         Highland lake’s not so much without exclamation by Scots Nationalist (4,4)
LOCH  NESS –  The most famous Scottish lake –   Insert into LESS (not so much )  OCH (an exclamation by the Scots) and N (nationalist).

21d         Deadly army in Cornish river (5)
FATAL –  A synonym for deadly  – insert the abbreviation for the Territorial Army into the Cornish river Fal.

22d         Road to ruin heading East (5)
ROUTE – A way or course that may be travelled – ROUT (ruin, defeat utterly) followed by (heading)  E (East).

23d         Dull piece of scenery (4)
FLAT – The fifth and final double definition – dull, monotonous, uniform  or a flat piece of scenery slid or lowered onto a stage.

I am back to the confusing world of remembering when to schedule the Sunday review,  leaving the Saturday duties to young Gnomethang.

4 comments on “DT 26888

  1. Thanks to the setter, and to Cryptic Sue for the explanations. I thought there were a lot of good clues in this one, but is was tricky.

  2. Thank you for the tips. I found this one very difficult indeed and would never have completed it without your help, e,g, I did not know “burst” was another way of indicating something is hidden in the clue.

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