DT 27181 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27181 (Hints)

Big Dave’s Crossword Club

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Today is your last chance to enter our May Prize puzzle!

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 and the FAQ 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.

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1a           Dope confused by rhythm heard in walker’s recorder (9)
An anagram (confused) of DOPE followed by what sounds like (heard) another word for rhythm

9a           Applause for speech when ranting initially gives way to verse (7)
Start with a speech and replace (gives way to) the R (Ranting initially) with V(erse)

11a         Opening 24 hours when payment’s due (4-3)
An opening or tear followed by a period of 24 hours

12a         Train worker for bar staff (7)
A bar followed by a verb meaning to staff or crew

18a         Stout German’s good results in big corporation (4,3)
A stout or ale followed by the German for good – once again corporation in this context means stomach

20a         Dance arranged in silence (7)
A three-letter word meaning arranged inside a verb meaning to silence

25a         Torn material gets valued (9)
A delicate ornamental fabric followed by a verb meaning valued


1d           Got expert back to health (8)
An expert, like the one who is resident at a golf club, followed by an adjective meaning back to health

2d           One may cross and another may make one cross (8)
One of these is a line which crosses a geometric shape, two of them make the shape of a cross

5d           Examination to go through again? (8)
This could mean to go through preceded by the usual prefix meaning again

14d         Strong port, ours had been stirred! (8)
A port on the Atlantic coast of Spain (adopted as an alias by one of our commenters!) followed by an anagram (had been stirred) of  OURS

16d         Dismissed one side entirely (8)
A cricketing term for dismissed followed by one of the two sides, relative to the viewer

17d         Tender visitor at Christmas (8)
… one of those who visited Jesus in Bethlehem

18d         Happened to be going over hill (6)
The BE from the clue followed by (going over in a down clue) a hill orupland tract of moorland

20d         The compiler’s illusion, falling short of the European system (6)
The first person objective pronoun (the compiler) followed by an illusion or deception without its final letter (falling short)

21d         Plan sure to capture very loud bear (6)
An anagram (plan) of SURE around (to capture) the musical notation for very loud gives a verb meaning to bear

The Crossword Club is now open. Feel free to leave comments.


The Quick crossword pun: (Hal} + {loose} +{sin} + {Asian} = {hallucination}


  1. Caravaggio
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    Good morning, Dave. Am I first? Well, that’s a shock… I seem to have stumbled through this puzzle but I’ve got there in the end and my recommendation to anyone who reads this, and who’s struggling, is just to keep going. There weren’t any “Eureka!” moments and, for that reason, I have to admit that this puzzle wasn’t particularly enjoyable.

  2. Expat Chris
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    In retrospect, I don’t know why this one took longer than it should have. Not much at all to smile about, either, I’m afraid, though I did like 18A and 2D (last one in). No excuse now not to get an early start on the laundry. Thanks to the setter, and to BD for once again working on a Saturday morning.

  3. Only fools
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 12:12 pm | Permalink

    Not overly difficult but precisely and pleasantly clued to brighten (and it wouldn’t take much) a morning in North Yorks .where it has finally stopped raining after a downpour lasting 13hrs .Garden now a lido .
    Favourite clue 2d.
    Thanks very much to both .

  4. jezza
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

    No complaints from me; a pleasant puzzle to solve. Thanks to setter, and to BD.

  5. Sweet Wiliam
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

    Thank you setter and thank you BD for your hints. I am afraid that I didn’t really enjoy this one. Found it hard and lacked sparkle. The layout certainly didn’t help hackers like me. I always find it depressing when the first reading yields nothing and I know that a long slog awaits !

  6. Vigo
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 12:36 pm | Permalink

    No problems with this one, though I’d never heard of 20a, thanks to setter and BD.

    • Merusa
      Posted May 18, 2013 at 3:45 pm | Permalink

      I had to refer to three dicionaries to find the meaning for “dance”‘ and then only as a second word in a hyphenated word.

  7. angel
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

    No sparkle in this one but not as difficult as it first appeared. Top part went in before the lower section. I now await my boxed fountain pen as I have done weekly for countless years!

  8. pommers
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

    It was OK I guess but that’s about it. Odd grid as well, 14 sets of double unches was a bit OTT!

    Thanks to setter and BD

  9. Kath
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

    I quite enjoyed this – my only real complaint is that it didn’t take me as long as the Saturday puzzles sometimes do so now I have no excuse for not doing useful stuff.
    1a and 2d both took a while. My first answer for 19d was wrong which didn’t help with 22 or 24a. I’ve never heard of 20a and I don’t understand the answer that I have for 23a – I suppose it could be wrong but it fits with all the checking letters and what I think the definition is.
    I liked 10, 13 and 22a and 2 and 7d.
    With thanks to Mr Ron and BD.
    Chilly and grey – my Mum’s driving me mad – the muntjac have found a way into the garden again and eaten all the lupins and lots of other things too. :sad:

    • Kath
      Posted May 18, 2013 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

      Have sorted out 23a – going to be grumpy in the greenhouse now!

  10. SheilaP
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

    Poor Kath…it is one of those days isn’t it?….We found the bottom half more difficult than the top & I don’t understand what the answer to 4d has to do with mosquito’s. Probably it’s obvious to everyone else, but not to me or Mr.SheilaP. Thank you to setter & hinter.

    • Posted May 18, 2013 at 1:54 pm | Permalink

      4d Mosquito’s keeling over, lady heartlessly snarled (6)
      Reverse (keeling over in a down clue) a small fly related to the mosquito and follow it with LadY without her inner letters (heartlessly)

      The small fly is variously defined by Chambers:
      * Any small fly of the family Chironomidae, related to the mosquito but not a bloodsucker
      * A mosquito
      * Extended to other small insects

      So it’s not a mosquito, but it is!

      • SheilaP
        Posted May 18, 2013 at 5:13 pm | Permalink

        Thank you Big Dave…..would never have got it in 100 years.

  11. Arthur Dent
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

    Guess what! Guess what! Guess what!

    I won the pen!

    I made a rather grumpy trip to the sorting office today to collect a packet that had been too big to go through the letterbox earlier this week, assuming it was yet another thing my wife had ordered online, only to find that it was for me and contained a pen!

    I didn’t see but apparently my name was published in the paper.

    Thank to everyone here. I’m not sure which one I won it for, but I’m certain I would have needed help to finish it – so thanks again!

    • Catherine
      Posted May 18, 2013 at 3:07 pm | Permalink


      • slartibartfast
        Posted May 18, 2013 at 5:06 pm | Permalink

        Well done Arthur. I may need to borrow your new pen, mine is running out and I still haven’t designed Norway

        • Arthur Dent
          Posted May 18, 2013 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

          Yes, those fjords give a lovely baroque feel to a continent!

          But I thought you were supposed to be doing Africa now?

          • slartibartfast
            Posted May 19, 2013 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

            That’s true glad you are paying attention . Africa with lovely fiddly bits

  12. Lucyp
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 3:24 pm | Permalink

    Hi there,

    With the help of the blog I have been steadily improving these past few months and getting back to the crossword I used to enjoy doing with my dear Dad. Am stuck this week on 7 down – can you help?

    Many thanks for all your clues – I couldn’t manage without them and the BRB.

    • gazza
      Posted May 18, 2013 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

      Hi Lucyp – welcome to the blog.

      7d Beaming as a good meal’s dished up (6)
      All the letters you need are actually in the clue. Start with A, add G(ood) and end with an anagram (dished up) of meal.

  13. Lucyp
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

    A ‘doh’ moment. Thanks Gazza. Finished!

  14. Heno
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to the setter and to Big Dave for the hints. Managed this one eventually. Got held up for long periods, then got going again. It seemed an odd puzzle, I couldn’t get the answer, then suddenly I did.Had never heard of 20a, had a penny drop moment with 22a which was quite apt. Started with 1a, finished with 19d. favourites were 2 & 6d. Didn’t like the grid, agree with Pommers, too many double unches. Was 3*/2* for me. Wish the jetstream would move north of Scotland.

  15. williamus
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 4:02 pm | Permalink

    Didn’t start this one till after lunch and needed some help from from Chambers Apps. As an ex-racing cyclist, 20a has a different definition for me – something learned today. 18a was favourite. No, it wasn’t a barrel of laughs today but then it doesn’t have to be to be a good puzzle… variety’s good and anyway, Monday’s will be here soon enough. Thanks to the setter and to Big Dave for the blog and the hints.

  16. Poppy
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 4:15 pm | Permalink

    Got this completed after quite a struggle, apart from 20a which I must be thick as two wide planks as I still can’t work it out even with all the Checking letters and helpful hints…. If anyone can offer me some help without being sent to the naughty step I’d be very grateful. Was slow over 22a also as I began with a sailing connection – doh! Trying to do my homework for Chelsea next week must have exhausted the few brain cells left. But thank you, again, to BD and the setter.

  17. Kath
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 4:26 pm | Permalink

    Hi Poppy,
    20a is a dance. The first and last two letters are a four letter word for silence and the middle three mean arranged. Was going to add another bit for the four letter word but changed my mind as I think it might be seen as an alternative clue.

    • Kath
      Posted May 18, 2013 at 4:28 pm | Permalink

      Sorry BD – it’s so long ago that I read your hints that I’d forgotten you gave one for 20a – just spotted it. :oops:

    • Poppy
      Posted May 18, 2013 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

      Hi Kath,
      Thanks for offering, but I’m still being really stupid. All I’m getting is a musical instrument (if I’m allowed to say that – apologies if not), but no dance. Really annoying (of me that is). Sorry to hear muntjacs are back. I thought your new fencing would have prevented that. I am the proud possessor of a David Austin rose and spend a fair amount of time staring at it in fascinated wonder & horror in case I don’t look after it properly… Green my fingers are not! Are you planning to be at Chelsea next week?

      • Only fools
        Posted May 18, 2013 at 4:47 pm | Permalink

        Poppy your answer is correct

      • Merusa
        Posted May 18, 2013 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

        As above, I had to refer to three dictionaries to get the dance connection

        • Attila Thehun
          Posted May 18, 2013 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

          My iPad version of Chambers has both musical instrument and dance for 20a. I’d never heard of either, but the checking letters made the answer clear.

          • Shawn as in 'prawn'
            Posted May 18, 2013 at 8:14 pm | Permalink

            I refer to my rather tatty Chambers which I have had since my varsity days, when our B Com had a course in English way back in 1974. It has a definition for 20 a but does not have 7 d! I always try to finish the puzzle without BDs help and I did it today. Last one 18a!! Really.

      • Kath
        Posted May 18, 2013 at 7:59 pm | Permalink

        Hello again,
        Yes – going to Chelsea with three like-minded friends on Wednesday. We could meet up if you are also going on Wed but would need contact details ie mobile numbers and don’t know how to do that here – I’m not remotely touchy about my number being bandied around but I know that others are. What do you think? I’m quite sure that BD could fix it since he seems able to sort most stuff out.
        As for the dreaded muntjac I’m almost in despair – new fence seemed to have sorted the problem but probably need new fencing down sides as the ******** are getting in again! :sad:

        • Poppy
          Posted May 18, 2013 at 8:19 pm | Permalink

          Thanks, OF, Merusa & ATh & StP -that’s reassuring. My mini version of Chammbers didn’t help…. But the BRB is such a heavy tome to lift!
          And Kath – would have loved to meet up, but I’m there on Tuesday, so no go this year. Hope you all have a lovely day. I’m really looking forward to it.

  18. Arthur Dent
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 5:07 pm | Permalink

    I quite enjoyed this one. The top half and the SW corner went in OK, but I was left with the rather odd sight of three quarters of the puzzle fully completed with an almost virgin SE corner. Fortunately all of the ones I needed were covered by BD’s hints and so now I’m finished.

    I think it might be a bit greedy to send off for the pen again!

    Thanks, as always, to the setter and to BD…

  19. Sue
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 5:08 pm | Permalink

    Initial reaction – huh? Eventually figured them out. Tried to fit Melchior in 17D – d’oh! Must be suffering from PNGSD (post new granddaughter stress disorder). All well in the end, somewhat like my crossword attempt. Thanks to BD and the setter. Off for a contemplative glass of wine in the garden to enjoy the evening sun.

  20. Derek
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

    A pleasant solve today.

    Faves : 1a, 20a, 23a, 24a, 2d, 4d, 8d & 14d.

    24a was my birthplace!

    The central heating came on again this morning! Has the planet over-nutated??

    The trees across the road are still very emerald green (except the copper one).

    I notice that there is more word play in the clues than usual.

  21. neveracrossword
    Posted May 18, 2013 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

    Quite enjoyed this. Top half went in before ANYTHING appeared below. 18a is amusing.

  22. una
    Posted May 19, 2013 at 12:04 am | Permalink

    I much prefer John Coltrane to John Denver, but I can’t say I preferred this to other puzzles .However , comparisons are odious. Got there eventually . Thank heavens for “submit”, letting me know I had in fact solved it. Thanks to setter and Big Dave.

  23. Little Dave
    Posted May 19, 2013 at 7:26 am | Permalink

    I found this quite tricky and it took me a while to get into gear. Once I did I completed it without too much hassle. Last in was 24a. Close call for the Test Match.

  24. Ronnie
    Posted May 19, 2013 at 9:50 pm | Permalink

    Needed a lot of help with this one. Thanks to all. 19d was the last one. Had to guess 20a. Didn’t enjoy it as much as I usually do.

  25. angel
    Posted May 20, 2013 at 9:20 am | Permalink

    Well done, Arthur Dent. I’m glad to actually know of someone who came up trumps which encourages me to carry on regardless. At least one can enter by email these days. However have always wondered if DT discounts entries which don’t carry permission to share email address!

  26. Ernest Rutherford
    Posted May 20, 2013 at 10:59 am | Permalink

    13a – seems very involved has anyone any hints on this? It would be quite a useful clue to get 15 letters across the middle!

    • gazza
      Posted May 20, 2013 at 11:39 am | Permalink

      You’ve changed your alias so your comment required moderation.

      13a Trucker may do this drive — told he goes wrong (7,3,5)

      It’s an anagram (wrong) of the four words prior to wrong.

  27. Ernest Rutherford
    Posted May 20, 2013 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

    Thankyou Gazza I had worked out that the answer was an anagram of those four words prior to wrong and had written them in a circle but that was as far as I got. I was really interested in the solution but I guess that is against the rules.

    • gazza
      Posted May 20, 2013 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

      If you’re replying to an existing comment it’s better to use the ‘reply’ button rather than starting a new thread, then all related comments stay together.
      You’re right that it’s against the rules to provide the solution, but if you’ve got all the checking letters then the first word at least must be pretty obvious.

      • Ernest Rutherford
        Posted May 20, 2013 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

        You are quite right my wife has just worked it out without the checking letters. I think I’m getting the hang of this; what does permalink refer to.