DT 26985 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26985

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26985

Hints and tips by Libellule

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BD Rating – Difficulty * Enjoyment ***

Fun crossword, but not overly difficult, pretty typical for a Rufus on Monday.

You can reveal the answer by highlighting the space between the curly brackets.


1. Near-cold liquid that’s found in the kitchen (8)
{COLANDER} – An anagram (liquid) of NEAR-COLD.

6. One is often cast as a tug-of-war team member (6)
{ANCHOR} – A large heavy object used to keep ships in place is also the person at the end of a tug-of-war team.

9. Contemptible cheat goes back on promises to pay (6)
{ODIOUS} – A two letter word that mans to swindle is reversed (back) and is then followed by IOUS (promises to pay).

10. One running out of clothes (8)
{STREAKER} – Someone who takes off all their clothes and runs naked through a public place.

11. Relaxed, with lowered pulse (8)
{DOWNBEAT} – A word that means subdued or muted could be a reduced heart rate if split (4,4).

12. Attractive yacht at sea beyond Cape (6)
{CATCHY} – C (cape) and an anagram (at sea) of YACHT.

13. The Bench? (4,2,6)
{SEAT OF HONOUR} – Where a Judge might sit?

16. It has the military stamp on it (6,6)
{PARADE GROUND} – Is a place where you might find a large number of marching men doing drill.

19. The sad gathering for bereavements (6)
{DEATHS} – An anagram (gathering) of THE SAD.

21. He joins more than one union illegally (8)
{BIGAMIST} – He gets married more than once.

23. 1984? (8)
{YEARBOOK} – A reference item that is published annually or a publication published by a graduating class of a school or college.

24. A ship’s company overheard making hoard (6)
{ACCRUE} – The answer sounds like (overheard) A CREW.

25. How often models losing shape may be employed? (6)
{SELDOM} – An anagram (losing shape) of MODELS.

26. Fed pig inside — refused to acknowledge it (8)
{DISOWNED} – Place the term for a female pig inside another word meaning to have dinner.


2. Familiar mode of address for ex-pupil? (3,3)
{OLD BOY} – A graduate from school is also a familiar term of address for a man.

3. A party with sailors below deck (5)
{ADORN} – A followed by a two letter word for a party, and then the abbreviation for the Royal Navy (sailors) to get a word that means to decorate.

4. Change of speed leads to speed which is reckless (9)
{DESPERATE} – An anagram (change) of SPEED is followed by a word that describes the relative speed of something. Definition is reckless.

5. Its root goes into stew (7)
{RISOTTO} – An anagram (goes into) of ITS ROOT.

6. Maurice’s heart of gold (5)

7. Many raced, getting beaten? (9)
{CHASTENED} – Many is C (the Roman numeral for 100) which is then followed by another word that means to move or act swiftly to get a word that means corrected by punishment or reproved.

8. Pass an examination (8)
{OVERHAUL} – Double definition, to catch up with and overtake, or to examine carefully for faults or repairs.

13. Mum, badly treated, is devastated (9)
{SHATTERED} – SH (mum) followed by an anagram (badly) of TREATED.

14. Sort of figure that changes with time? (4-5)
{HOUR-GLASS} – An instrument for measuring time is also a word that describes an attractive female shape.

15. Like this place? Me too! (4,4)
{SAME HERE} – A phrase that means “I agree” could also describe the fact that a one location is just like another.

17. Censured about plot involving UK (7)
{REBUKED} – RE (about) a three letter word for a flower border for example with UK placed inside.

18. Sculpted statue, showing ingenuity (6)
{ASTUTE} – An anagram (sculpted) of STATUE.

20. Bad weather in August or March (5)
{STORM} – Another word for a tempest can be found hidden between the words August or March.

22. Parrot with head of myna and a cry of a rook (5)
{MACAW} – Take the first letter (head) of M(yna) A, and then the cry of a rook, crow or raven to get a large tropical American parrot.

The Quick crossword pun: {bone} + {apart} = {Bonaparte}

42 comments on “DT 26985

  1. A straightforward puzzle from Rufus. Made a nice gentle start to my week. I enjoyed doing this one. Thanks to Rufus & to Libellule for the review.

  2. A pleasant, straightforward puzzle with some nice surfaces. Thanks to Rufus, and to Libellule.

  3. Straightforward but not particularly enjoyable. Never heard of the phrase in 13a but did like 23a. 1a was last in as I didn’t recognise liquid as an anagram indicator!
    Thx to Libellule for the confirmation of 12a.

  4. Good morning Libelulle, thanks for hints, lots of favourites today 22d being top of list, putting’ here, here’ in at 15d didn’t help at first but soon realised it was wrong when 16a wouldn’t fit! Also keep forgetting ‘C’ = many so couldn’t understand my answer at 7d, otherwise as you say Libelulle typical Rufus but a two star for me at least :-)

  5. Nothing too taxing in this one. Best for us were 13a and 23a. Thanks Rufus and Libellule.
    Yesterday we put our clocks forward on hour for the summer. This makes our down-loading of the puzzles and accessing this blog less convenient for us. (And it will get worse when you people change at the end of the month). Might have to resort to working a day behind with solving which will mean returning to being “lurkers” rather than commenters, or perhaps adjusting our sleep patterns. We’ll see.
    Congratulations on the golf!

  6. Thank you Rufus and Libellule for your review. Enjoyable and not too difficult. Still can’t get over the Ryder Cup result ! ( and Spurs of course ! ) – Be honest BD which was the greater shock ?

    1. Usually the referee robs us at Old Trafford – remember when we were robbed in 2005. It was great to see The Great Whinger complaining about only getting 4 minutes of added time. Who does he think he is? The sooner he takes his pension and goes back to Scotland the better it will be for English football.

      1. As a Liverpool supporter I know what you mean by ‘getting robbed by the referee’ particularly against Man U

      2. Agreed ! I remember an occasion many years ago when our team were at Old Trafford and we drawing 1-1 at full time. As you say the ref was playing until United scored, but unfortunately as they were overcommitted up front we broke away and scored – after about 10 mins of extra time. – and won. My pal and I were in their exec. box and leapt to our feet ! – and lived to tell the story (Just ! )

      3. 100% behind you there BD. I was there when the Mendes goal was disallowed, talk about a blind ref!

  7. I really liked this one. A straight from the brainer. Always a good day when that happens, but always a bit deflating when the proper crossword johnnies give it 1 star, which puts me in my place. I am not able to tell who the setter is, but I know I have done some by him before – I understand it is Rufus. Is that because he does Mondays, or is it just his style? Anyway, I find some of his clues quite amusing – especially 10a and 21a.

  8. Great stuff. Particularly liked 3d and 23a for their surface readings and ‘completeness’ as clues. I understand what I mean anyway. Thanks to all.

  9. Well that’ll teach me to jump straight in with absolutely no thought and get 1a wrong – quick look – anagram – cauldron!! :roll: and :oops: After seeing the error of my ways and sorting that one out I agree with Libellule’s ratings.
    I wasn’t too sure about the double definition in 8d but having looked in BRB I give in. I didn’t know the tug of war bit of 6a.
    I liked 13, 23 and 25a and 15 and 22d.
    With thanks to Rufus and Libellule.

  10. Typical Rufus start to a very grey miserable Monday morning. Thanks to him and Libellule too.

  11. I thought that was a brilliant crossword. I finished it in one hit which is very rare for me. I have been known to take days and days to complete them…..I only cheat as a last resort!10/10 from me :-)

  12. Thanks to rufus and to Libellule for an enjoyable if untaxing crossword and an excellent review.

  13. I, too, thoroughly enjoy Rufus on Monday. Its a warm and pleasant start to the week. OK, so it’s not in 4* or 5* territory for difficulty, but its definitely 4* or 5* for enjoyment. And, normally I can complete without any resort to the hints kindly provided (by Libellule today).

    As ever I agree with Mary, Rufus is my favourite setter. No great favourites as clues, I liked them all

  14. Thanks to Rufus & Libellule, an enjoyable puzzle, I agree with the star ratings. Started with 1a, finished with 15d. Favourites were 15a & 23a. Rainy today in Central London

  15. I’m sure I’ve completed more enjoyable crosswords in the last 40 years or so, but I honestly can’t remember when. I thought this one was filled with humour and wit (e.g. 25a & 14d) and the anagrams were neither too obvious nor too contrived. I thought some of the double definitions were nicely constructed (e.g. 6a & 21a) and the whole thing flowed, didn’t it? What a nice way to start the week, thank you Rufus. Not completely plain sailing though, I needed to come here for the rational behind a couple of answers, for which thanks to Libellule. Even the linking words of the Quickie caused a chuckle.

  16. Nice gentle start to the week; but then, they all are for me. 16a made me chuckle but I certainly didn’t when I was doubling round it carrying a nine-and-three-quarter pound rifle; particularly when it was punishment for somebody else’s mistake. Those were the days. No real difficulty today, but most enjoyable. Thanks Libellule and of course Rufus.

  17. Enjoyed this, although pommette did nearly all of it without my help and in very quick time! The usual benign Monday from Rufus methinks. A slightly tougher test is the Rufus in today’s Grauniad.

    Thanks to Rufus and Libellule.

    BTW, big sigh of relief today as the sale of pommette’s mum’s house finally went through so it’s all “Finito Benito” now :smile:

    1. Similar experience here. Made Mrs K grumpy by doing 80% before she had sat down with her copy. More patience required!

      1. Life is so much easier when your husband prefers the number puzzles and can’t understand cryptics at all :)

  18. Whizzed through this one despite getting rather damp in Monday morning rain. Liked 14d the best.

  19. Rather surprised to note that there is not a nod towards George Orwell in the review explanation of 23a. That is the book that immediately came to mind for us.

  20. I agree – williamus put it perfectly. Wonderful puzzle. Loved 13a and 16a. Brilliant stuff, and made be doubly happy today because I managed to join the Clueless Club for once (that’s a good thing, right?), Thanks all. :-)

  21. Found 11a extremely difficult as paper said (Relaxed with lower pulse) (8)
    Answer appears to be two words (4) (4).

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