DT 27073 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27073 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27073 (Hints)

Big Dave’s Crossword Club

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There’s still time have a go at our January Prize crossword.

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.

Could new readers please read the Welcome post before asking questions about the site.

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           Unruly youth‘s beer left on display (5,4)
An insipid apology for a beer followed by L(eft) and a word meaning on display

10a         Found to be without connection (9)
Two definitions, the latter being without a connection to a wire attached to a metal plate sunk in the ground – shocking!

11a         Turn to be suspended and be forgotten (2,4)
A two-letter word for a turn or act followed by a verb meaning suspended, maybe from a gallows

13a         It’s a dreadful thing to have (6)
Or put differently, dread of something, usually irrationally

21a         Convict brought back raw material in abundance (6)
Reverse a convict and add some raw material from which valuable constituents may be recovered

29a         Support a railway subsidiary (9)
A verb meaning to support, which originated in boxing and duelling, followed by the A from the clue and R(ailwa)Y


2d           Article’s brought in to invalidate book (6)
The indefinite article inside a verb meaning to invalidate

5d           Inoffensive, lacking power to contain odd one out (15)
An adjective meaning lacking power around (to contain) the odd one out (the one that proves the rule!)

7d           Main HQ? (5,4)
A cryptic definition of a place used as a centre of operations by sailors

16d         One with letters to his name (9)
… on envelopes and postcards

17d         Wanting wingless insect (3)
Just drop WING from WANTING, it’s as simple as that!

22d         Sustained tune to broadcast (6)
The musical notation for sustained is an anagram (broadcast) of TUNE TO

24d         Duck‘s fancy crest hiding egg (6)
A  sea duck with black plumage comes from an anagram (fancy) of CREST around the letter shaped like an egg (another construct I dislike intensely, along with ball)

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: {sink} + {rung} + (eyes} = {synchronise}

145 comments on “DT 27073 (Hints)

  1. Nice puzzle for a Saturday so thanks to the setter and BD.

    Also nice to see the duck making a return, not seen him for a while.

        1. come to think of it I must have heard of it then, I probably commented on those crosswords that I hadn’t heard of it too!!

  2. Done and dusted with hesitation here and there.
    Two new words for me.
    Thanks setter and BD

  3. Blimey 4 hints, is there a shortage?
    Interesting puzzle that didn’t excite but came together quite well. Not sure about my answer to 11a, doesn’t seem quite right. It’s not a phrase that comes to mind. Also can’t see the short drink in 17a although the answer is obvious unless its a shortening of the French word for a ore-prandial drink ( hope it’s not the naughty corner again for alternate clues

    1. The abbreviation of the British unit of the standard capacity of beer is needed in 17a! Going to enjoy a few later!!!

      1. Hi Mary! Yes, I’d agree with you but it’s not the sort of expression which I’d use and I don’t think that you’d use it either. I thought that this was a pleasant enough puzzle for a Saturday but there weren’t any “Eureka!” moments and I find that disappointing.

      2. Thx Mary I thought that was it but not a phrase I know. How did you get on with the pesky duck and that really odd word in 22d?

        1. Never heard of 22d Brian but now I think of it somewhere in the back of my mind I have heard of the duck, maybe when we went to Slimbridge last Oct!

            1. I didn’t know that LL but it does say on their website that in winter months a few ***** ducks can turn up at any time, so just maybe I did… ;-)

              1. Into the naughty corner at once Mary! You just gave the answer and there’s no cake from cryptic Sue today

                1. Oh no and I tried so hard to stay out sorry Dave! Just as well I’ve just eaten some cake then ;-)

    2. Brian Dave puts loads of hints in these days when I started just over 3 years ago there were usually only about half a dozen hints or so on a weekend!

  4. Thank you setter and BD – very enjoyable. Best part of the day over now – obligatory visit to The Reebok this afternoon. I have forgotten what proper football looks like !

      1. Come on BD – you know Millwall are famous for their passing game ! Always used to look forward to the Spurs matches – they always came to win and played some great football with scorelines like 3-2 and 2-2. Sad to see our lot just collapse. The local paper still talks about promotion ! The reality is trying to avoid relegation !

    1. Not sure if I’m allowed, being so new to this group… But the answer would relate to the last word. Hope I don’t get sent to the naughty step (especially as we might be short on cakes at present). So my apologies in advance if I’ve overstepped the mark. Really appreciated today’s crossword as I actually completed it! Many thanks to BD (& yes, I’m always glad of as many hints as soon as possible to be going on with) as well as to the setter. Hope Pommers is still improving & continuing get well soon messages to CS.

      1. You’re fine Poppy as long as you don’t give alternative clues or any words or letters in the actual answer :-)

      2. Poppy,

        Feel free to offer assistance. You can indicate what the definition is and explain how the wordplay works. The only thing we ask is that you don’t give words in the answer or provide alternative clues.

      3. Thank you for your help Poppy and welcome to the group. I can let you have some cake if you are sent to the naughty corner but I don’t think it is likely

        1. Thanks Collywobbles – especially for the sweetening offer if needed, and for Mary’s & Prolix’s reassurances. And now I see from Prolix’s masterly hint how best to do this!

          1. I’ve been to the naughty corner quite a few times but there are less and less people in there these days :-)

        1. Oh Mary that’s a real comfort, thanks. And also thanks to your example I worked through the website to find out how to insert an emoticon (I think it’s called?). I’d share a piece of cake with you if ever needed :-)

        2. Whenever I try to help by the time I’ve figured out how best to do it someone has beaten me – and given a better hint!

    2. A four letter derogatory word for a journalist goes around a word meaning states or expresses to give a type of bag.

  5. Good morning Dave thanks for hints as usual, though didn’t need them today, I found the top half of the puzzle harder than the bottom, didn’t think 10a quite right because you can still be connected even if you are 10a! new word for me at 22d, I wouldn’t have finished this without my usual electronic friends so have to say 3* for me for difficulty but not a crossword I really enjoyed no real favourite clue

  6. Enjoyed upper half rather more than lower and made more of a fuss over the NE corner than was justified .Liked 10a,12a,13a,7d and 8d .
    16d is sadly on the RSPB red list -only 52 breeding pairs in UK .

    Thanks again

      1. I wondered if your comment for 16d was a shrewd observation of the decline of one form of communication !

        I think 24d still breeds in N Scotland, but as you say very few prs. We are going up to Bamburgh for a week in Feb and will no doubt see rafts of a thousand or so floating by on the North sea. I think they must all depart for Scandinavia / N Russia for breeding.

  7. Like a few others, never heard of the rascal in 24d. I knew the three checking letters and what the others “must” be, but it just looked wrong. Thought 13A was a terrifc clue. Quite sure I would never have got it without the checking letters. Must confess to fluking the correct answer to 17A as all the letters dropped in from other clues. I wrongly assumed the answer was an abbreviation for aperitif. Oh dear!

          1. Poppy if you go to the top of the page and click on FAQ then the sub heading ‘how do I use emoticons’ all will be revealed :-)

            1. A great help, Mary, as I didn’t want to ask. How great is this site! I love the courteousness of the whole thing. (Especial thanks again to BD.)

              1. Yes – a really great place. I used to be a bit reluctant to ask things but nobody seems to mind. Even if it seems like a dim question no-one ever makes you feel dim!

                1. Yes, I really appreciate that part too especially. And it seems an excellent rule not to allow timings as I think it would otherwise mean someone like me being buried by despair :lol:

                  1. Me too, although I sometimes think that knowing how long the BD’s, CS’s, gazzas etc etc take to do a puzzle couldn’t be discouraging as we all KNOW that they are the real experts and it might just spur us lesser mortals on to greater efforts.

        1. Very witty!
          And thanks to BD and all for the hints and banter. The ‘insipid’ hint for 1a does not seem to be a fair description – as a vaguely recall from a couple of doppelbocks last month.
          Rainy and cool in Boston.

  8. I haven’t lived in the UK for 30 years, so I have trouble at times with the newer expressions. Hence, 1A took longer than it should have to work out.. Same with 11A, for which I needed Mary’s nudge. 22D is a new word for me (solved by trial and error and confirmed by the dictionary). I completed the puzzle, but really didn’t enjoy it that much today.

  9. Busy morning with my son football training and off to see Stevenage v Doncaster Rovers. Just about to start it. See you later.

  10. As usual for me on a Saturday – slow down the first straight then a sprint finish to the line. Thanks to setter and to BD for his hint for 5d – I had the answer but couldn’t work out how I’d got it.

    Anybody know how CS is getting on?

  11. I really enjoyed this and thought that most of it was pretty straightforward to begin with – then it all went a bit wrong.
    The fatal error was putting in the wrong answer for 10a which completely screwed up 3 and 5d. Oh dear!! Eventually sorted that out. Then was stupidly slow to get 13a (if I’d thought of rats I’d have got it very quickly :sad:) Also I didn’t know 22d. Did know the duck.
    I liked too many clues to weed out any particular ones.
    With thanks to Mr Ron and BD.
    Very cold and rain with lumps in it in Oxford. Going to have a go at NTSPP after second dog walk.

      1. Neither have I. But recovering from a bout of Pleurisy gives me the perfect excuse (although I love taking her out). And she’s not doing too well on remembering medicine times but is always keen to bring a chew to enjoy on my lap!

        1. you and pommers both then although pommers progressed to a serious hospital stay with complications, hope you’re better soon, keep warm and let the dog rest for a while :-)

            1. Lovely picture of Poppy, I’ve never heard of that breed, is she tiny? My brothers dog is Poppy too

              1. I’ve never heard of that breed either. The only Poppy that I know is an Old English Sheepdog and you wouldn’t want her on your lap!

                1. Just back from my first outing in weeks (apart from hospital – bah!) to see film Quartet. Poppy is a little Affenpinscher, not a breed I’d ever heard of before we got her. Very independent & hard to train, but utterly fascinating & tremendous fun. First dog I’ve had who actually invents games. And when I take her on the tube, she always draws forth smiles :-D

                    1. Yes, I think so Mary – although it’s quite a reminder of what lies ahead in terms of ageing. It was a stage play & the filming rather reflects that – a gentle pace (which I like) but rather static at times. Strong cast & well played. And it shows that it’s Dustin Hoffman’s first go at directing. At times he treats the actors almost too carefully & perhaps rather tentatively. A piece of no physical sudden movements. But I found it well worth seeing & do hope you enjoy it.

              2. She’s pretty small, Mary – weighs just a few grams over 3 Kg. But with a really, really big personality (I’ve always preferred big dogs in the past – my husband’s wedding present to me was an Irish Wolfhound!) which more than makes up for having to downsize for health reasons :-)

  12. Quite enjoyed this one. I got the last two letters of 15d wrong and thus had a problem with 28a until the penny dropped. Doh!

  13. Only just got in from cold dog walk……brain frozen and stuck on 15d and 28a. Any help gratefully received

    1. 28a Pole felt unwell pinned down (6)
      One of the two poles followed by a verb meaning felt unwell

      15d Irritated initially about candle I ordered from a certain country (9)
      The initial letter of Irritated and the single-letter Latin abbreviation for about around an anagram (ordered) of CANDLE I.

        1. As a new boy, I am a but diffident about”explaining” anything to an experienced campaigner like you, Mary, but “about” is for the Latin abbreviation and “ordered” is for the anagram.
          I enjoy this website, but usually only “lurk” and do not participate!

          1. No problem Kingsley and I am a realtive ‘newbie’ to cryptic crosswords of about three and a half years, so not that experienced :-) , the clue is telling us to take the first letter of’ Irritated’ and the Latin abbreviation for ‘abou’t and put them ‘about’ an anagram of ‘candle I’ and is therefor using ‘about’ twice, i.e. doing ‘double duty’, which is often frowned about in crossword circles , hope I’ve not confused you, I’ve confused myself a bit!

            1. No. “about” gives you the second letter of the answer, then that’s followed by the anagram.

            2. Apologies they come before the anagram, I was just looking at the first and last letters with the anagram inside Duh! now I’ve probably confused you too, apologies once more

                1. Reading the clue from the beginning:
                  “Irritated initially” That’s the “I” as explained by Dave; “About” That’s the Latin abbreviation; “Candle I” – ordered: That’s the anagram. Or am I being stupid?

                  1. No you are quite correct as I explained above, see how you started off a discussion, so please drop in more often :-)

  14. I did finish, with some help from gizmos. Am not sure why 5d, assuming it’s right, as it makes no sense, I just put in what fits. At least I completed the puzzle, compared to last week that’s quite an accomplishment. I like a good workout.

    1. If you take the first two letters and the last 4 as one word with another in the middle does that help to understand it?

      1. That’s my DUH moment of the day! Funny how long one stares at these things blankly, and then when the penny drops you wonder how you could have missed it. Thanks so much for the help.

  15. Thanks to the setter & to Big dave for the hints. I enjoyed this one a lot, and found it quite straightforward until I was 2 letters short in 5d. Just couldn’t think of the word, so resorted to electronic help DOH!

  16. Just back from Oz and still jet-lagged. Very sorry to learn of Pommers’ illness and hope he gets better soon. I found this puzzle hard going, specially for a Saturday, but am probably out of practice. I needed lots of help and was glad of BD’s hints. I did remember the duck, but found 22d rather strange, more used to having it preceded by ‘sos’. Hope that doesn’t put me in the naughty corner. Thanks to the setter and BD,

    A very Happy New Year to all! :-)

    1. Hello Franny. welcome back and Happy New Year to you too :-) , hope you had a great visit and weren’t affected by the fires out there

  17. Off now to toot the flute in church, not done a lot of tooting lately, so a bit rusty! Sorry I don’t have time to go to the naughty corner but I will pray for forgiveness :-)

  18. Still can’t get 28a, I understand the construction of the clue but a synonym for ‘felt unwell’ escapes me. I have a feeling I may have to wait till a week Monday for the answer then kick myself. The rest of the puzzle was fairly good.

  19. I found this very difficult today. I needed the hints just to get started and LOTS of electronic help to finish it. Mind you – it wasn’t helped by the fact that, at the time I worked out 11a, I had exactly the same two checking letters in the same places of 9a and promptly wrote the answer to 11a in there instead. It made 8d very confusing – I spent a lot of time trying to justify “agreeable” for it! (I didn’t have 19a at that stage). The reason I didn’t have 19a was because I had misspelt 5d at the point where it intersects with 19a and didn’t spot that until the end…


    Oh well – finished it now…

    Thanks to BD, setter and everyone who helped…

    1. The kind of mistake that makes something impossible which then makes something else impossible etc etc happens to me all the time – so glad I’m not the only one. It’s always good to have some company!! :smile:

  20. Crypticsue update:
    Evening All! I have just called the lady herself. The operation went well and the surgeon was very pleased with the results. Unfortunately Sue is bored out of her not inconsiderable mind as she is being forced to lay face down and not do anything with resulting back discomfiture, puffy-facedness (not in Chambers!) and lack of knowledge of what to do with arms for an extended period of time.
    She did say that she disobeyed the Doc and solved this puzzle one-eyed, no doubt putting most of us to shame with the solving time (I didn’t ask!).
    She misses the crosswords and the blog banter terribly and can’t wait to get back in the saddle but she has to wait another 3 days for the retina bubble to do its thang and dissipate. Apart from that all is well. So there!.
    I’ll give her a buzz Monday (or probably tomorrow as she is really bored!) and give another update.

    1. REALLY pleased to hear that all is OK’ish. I have been thinking about her – please pass that on. I think that enforced not-allowed-to-do-anythingness (also not in BRB – haven’t looked – just assumed) must be absolutely awful. How can anyone help the boredom? If you have any ideas, or if she does, please say so.
      Pass on a big :grin: to her from me next time you speak to her, please. I look forward to her return.
      Can she do crosswords in her head? What I mean is if someone reads the clues and tells her how many letters and what’s already in etc. I know that I can’t but I bet she can! If so, maybe a son or husband or friend could do the reading and the writing . . .

    2. Thanks for that gnomey, please give her my love when you speak to her and all best wishes for speedy return to this blog!

    3. Good luck Sue and best wishes for a speedy recovery. At least when I was limited to 3ft from the hospital bed I could see to do crosswords!

      1. Earlier on I read that you haven’t been well either Pommers – hope your recovery is well on its way now and that you are “back to normal”

    4. Just read my way through the blog and came to this. I hope CS recovers quickly and fully and that she does what the doctors tell her – sometimes they know best!!!!

      Send her my best wishes when you talk to her.

      BTW Happy New Year to everyone – been very remiss in communicating lately – pick at it at odd times so never seem to be here when anyone else is……..

        1. Thanks Mary – life seems to have been a bit hectic lately and there’s not always energy to comment!!!! It’s just pure laziness on my part.

  21. I didn’t start this until the evening and all I can say is thank goodness for BRB Thesaurus otherwise I would still be looking at a blank grid.

    Thanks to BD for the hints (which I did not look at straight away) , they came in very handy :-)

    Only 8d left to go, got the checking letters but nothing is filtering in, a nudge in the right direction gratefully received. The word I think fits does not make sense with the clue so I suspect it is not the right word.

      1. Thank you Franco, as soon as you gave me the definition I got it and I knew the word I thought of was not right :D

        1. Una,

          8d – Definition: Pleasant smell.

          Wordplay: a 3 letter word for “cloth” inside a country (close to the UK and fairly close to Eire(?). I don’t understand why the clue says ” … the country”.

          Oh! Well! Off to the Naughty Corner! See you all next week-end? Hopefully!

          1. thanks anyway, got there 1 minute ahead of your what would have been a really useful clue. I think there is little doubt I’ll be pleading for help next saturday.You are a brick !

            1. Irish people ,abroad, when asked where they come from always answer “Ireland” (eire is only on stamps) except sometimes.. A well known Irish barrister after attending a rugby match in France , and all the usual afters went to a brothel, but unfortunately was unable to avail of the opportunities.His lady friend asked him where he came from. He replied , patriotically “England”.

  22. Thanks for all the assistance so far, last three to solve are 9a, 8d, and 25a. feel like throwing me a few bones please?

    1. Rather nervously I offer the following. 9a you’d need to get a balloon to fly. 8d see Franco’s hint above. And 25a you’d see at Wimbledon. (Hope I’ve not overstepped the mark, BD.) Good luck with the solving, Una.

      1. thanks , got those two , I knew it began with something warm but got no further, I always get particularly stupid with last three, psychological I suppose.

    2. 9a – the definition to this clue is ‘boastful talk’. You need another word for ‘randy’, (or passionate), followed by a word meaning ‘broadcast’, as in tv or radio.

    3. 25a – this is a double definition. The first is ‘Available for use’ and the second definition is ‘during religious ceremony’.

    4. 8d – (this) Pleasant smell is constructed from the name of a county containing (in) another word which has the same meaning as (a) ‘cloth’

      1. I figured that but which country , there are so many of them, I expect I’ll get it eventually.Cancel that I Finally got it now.thanks for all the much needed assistance.

  23. Our daily has finally bought into the DT crosswords and admit these are much more challenging than the previous batch. Then found this site and admit it does help me finish the crossword. Last clue was 10a and when I finally got it, felt I must have been switched off! Greetings from East London South Africa.

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