DT 27218 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27218

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27218

Hints and tips by Libellule

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ****

Finally, it looks like summer has arrived.


1. Loyalty is required, say, in union (10)
{ALLEGIANCE} – Put EG (for example, say) inside another word for a close association or pact to get a word that describes loyalty to someone or something.

9. Type of opera that evokes flattery (4)
{SOAP} – A word that can mean to talk persuasively is also a serialised domestic drama.

10. Spare site I developed, providing party fare (10)
{PATISSERIE} – An anagram (developed) of SPARE SITE I is also a type of bakery.

11. An attractive bar (6)
{MAGNET} – A piece of metal that is capable of attracting other pieces of metal.

12. Went quietly to give inside information to editor (7)
{TIPTOED} – If split (3,2,2) this word for moving stealthily or warily could also mean passing useful knowledge to someone in charge of a newspaper.

15. Avenger about to give chase (7)
{ENGRAVE} – An anagram (about) of AVENGER.

16. Gave everyone a hand (5)
{DEALT} – At cards.

17. University course right for employer (4)
{USER} – U (university), SE (South East, course) and R (right).

18. Car gives way for pedestrians (4)
{FORD} – A make of car is also a type of river crossing.

19. Understood one to be in diplomacy (5)
{TACIT} – A word that means to be implied or inferred from actions or statements is I (one) placed inside a word for skill or judgement in handling difficult situations.

21. Awful house in conversion (7)
{HEINOUS} – An anagram (awful) of HOUSE IN.

22. A nominal attachment (4-3)
{NAME-TAG} – Is also a badge of personal identification.

24. She brings company into line, possibly (6)
{NICOLE} – A girl’s name can be constructed from placing CO (company) inside an anagram (possibly) of LINE.

27. Opening match in early morning (5,5)
{FIRST LIGHT} – Another term for dawn, could also describe starting to use a common piece of ignition.

28. Punish student spectators (4)
{GATE} – Double definition, to confine a student to the grounds of a college and the total admission at a public event.

29. Final choice for a holiday destination? (4,6)
{LAST RESORT} – An expedient adopted in desperation could also be a place where you might go on holiday if you couldn’t find anywhere else.


2. Work not for bread alone (4)
{LOAF} – To idle or a lump of bread.

3. Draw out information that sounds illegal (6)
{ELICIT} – A word that means to draw out or bring forth sounds like ILLICIT.

4. I may get nursed badly but that will be covered (7)
{INSURED} – I and then an anagram (badly) of NURSED

5. England invader lacking an accepted standard (4)
{NORM} – Remove (lacking) AN from a French invader to get another word for a standard or average.

6. Component that defies analysis (7)
{ELEMENT} – “A fundamental, essential or irreducible constituent of a composite entity” or a known substance composed of atoms having an identical number of protons within its nucleus.

7. Ride in which the first half may be a twelfth of the second (10)
{ROUNDABOUT} – Another word for a merry-go-round could be one period in a boxing match, A, and then a word for the whole match.

8. Pudding is seen to follow after (7,3)
{SPOTTED DOG} – A type of steamed suet pudding containing currants is a word for espied and then a word for to track or trail persistently.

12. Make contact and start being close (5,3,2)
{TOUCH AND GO} – A phrase that describes something that might be risky or critical can be made up from a word that means to come into light contact with, followed by AND, and then a word that means to depart.

13. Bet policies will need to change, none the less, in referendum (10)
{PLEBISCITE} – An anagram (will need to change) of BET POLICIES with O removed (none the less).

14. A number upset wise man and artist (5)
{DEGAS} – D (Roman numeral for 500) and a reversal (upset)
of a word that describes a man who has profound wisdom, to get a French painter and sculptor known for his paintings of ballet dancers.

15. Spritely — that’s the Spanish and French conclusion (5)
{ELFIN} – Take the Spanish word for the, and then add the French word for the end.

19. Melodic way of having fun with lute (7)
{TUNEFUL} – An anagram (way of having) of FUN and LUTE.

20. Drunkenly set trap for the barman (7)
{TAPSTER} – An anagram (drunkenly) of SET TRAP.

23. Some poured diesel into troubled waters (6)
{EDDIES} – Currents of water moving in a circular motion, can be found hidden between the words “poured diesel”.

25. Girl puts one over teacher being sent up (4)
{IRIS} – Another girl’s name is I placed above a form of polite address reversed (being sent up).

26. Burn or brew? (4)
{CHAR} – To scorch or a slang word for tea.

The Quick crossword pun: (tapped} + {answer} = {tap dancer}

60 comments on “DT 27218

  1. I really enjoyed this one – made a bit of a howler by putting the answer to 21a into 22a – this really screws things up!

    All sorted now!

  2. A nice and smooth puzzle today. 2*/4* for me. Thanks to Rufus, and to Libellule.

  3. Got the anagram for 15a, but had never heard of that meaning for the clue. Found the north-east corner most tricky today

    1. Chasing is often used with Repousse as descriptions of working a design in metal usually plate. Repousse produces a raised image/effect and chasing the opposite.

  4. Nice easy fare as one comes to expect for a Monday. Can’t say I liked 18A as I’m never too happy seeing a trade name in an answer, but I guess is justifiable here. 12A and 24A were very clever I thought.

    Looks like we’ve got more sun here, I may no be able to put off doing the mowing much longer.

  5. A good fun puzzle again. We appreciate the short, sharp, punchy clues and there are plenty of them in this one. We had a visitor who is new to cryptics ‘helping’ us and she was totally bamboozled by the process. Feel that we may have confirmed some of the doubts she is having about our sanity.
    Thanks Rufus and Libellule.

  6. Easily completed sitting in Morrison’s car park listening to Astral Weeks Live At The Hollywood Bowl whilst Saint Sharon shops for her mum who we are taking out for dinner. Ta to all.

  7. Thoroughly enjoyable start to the week with the usual Rufus far. However, I couldn’t quite see how the answer for 12d fully matched the clue. 13d was very clever and 7d a little obscure

  8. A bit more than 2* for difficulty if only because of a couple of the little four letter answers – always find them tricky – and 4* enjoyment.
    2d was my last one in and I gave up completely with18a.
    I got into an almighty muddle with 7d – eventually guessed it was something to do with boxing and assume that there are twelve rounds in a bout. I’ve never heard of the 8d pudding – have heard of spotted dick but not dog, except a dalmatian. I’ve also not heard of 20d although it was quite an easy anagram so didn’t cause problems.
    I liked 12a and 12 and 15d. My favourite was 27a.
    With thanks to Rufus and Libellule.

    1. Puddings, especially eating them, are my specialist subject. A spotted dog is similar to a spotted dick except it’s made with plums not currants or raisins!

      1. Thanks for the explanation. I, too, had never heard of it, only the “dick” version.

      2. I assumed it was Political Correctness Gone mad and we Europe had banned us from enjoying Spotted Dick

      3. Why am I getting some garbage about proving I am human when trying to respond to this post? Seems a bit off that I have to prove I’m human to a lump of software, or could it be my criticism of Brussels?

        1. I can’t do the technical stuff but I think it’s probably something that just happens occasionally. It did it to me a few weeks (or months) ago and I thought that I must have committed some terrible sin – don’t think I had! Then it wouldn’t let me do anything – then BD sorted it out and it was all fine again and has been ever since.

      4. Puds are not my forte – either eating or making them. Can do a mean lemon tart, ice cream in any flavour you like, creme caramel and fruit tarts, pies or crumbles and that’s about it. Never made a steamed pudding in my life!

        1. Rubbish – make Christmas pud every year – I don’t like it but everyone else does!

  9. Got this fairly straightforwardly, but like Paul S. found the NE corner the last to fill in. Enjoyed the clues, although wasn’t sure I’d grasped the sense of 18a as I’d assumed the answer would be something restricted to foot travellers only, and I thought this answer applied to vehicular travel also. And I can imagine Cryptic Sue might make a superb 8d which Mr P would love…. Didn’t know that the matches in 7d were limited to twelve, so yet more to learn. Thank you Setter, and to Libellule too.

    1. When my husband isn’t Mr CS, he actually is a Mr P so I was somewhat confused as to why I should be making him an 8d. :) Don’t think I have ever made one? If I was to make a steamed pudding, it would have to be treacle.

      1. And that would be one of my Mr P’s favourites, so I can hear him sighing…!

  10. Another excellent puzzle for which many thanks to the setter. Thanks too to Libellule for the hints, which happily for me I didn’t need today. I agree with Libellule’s **/**** rating.

    Like several others today I found the NE corner the most challenging with 9a my last answer in.

    Lots of great clues, making it very hard to pick a favourite, but, if you twist my arm, I’ll settle for 7d.

  11. Bit of a struggle in the SW today as having 21a in place, ‘reach out to’ seemed to me to be a perfect answer to 12d, only to be stuck on all of the other affected across clues!
    Oh well. thanks to Libellule for putting me right eventually.

  12. Bit tougher than normal Lara Monday but really enjoyable nonetheless with some very clever clues esp 7d and28a.
    Don’t quite understand 6d tho, can see that an element is a constituent part but why ‘defies analysis’?
    Thx to all concerned

    1. Brian,
      Defies analysis – it cannot be broken down any further, i.e. it cannot be analysed any more.

      1. Hmm! Bit weak in my opinion. All elements may be broken down into their nuclear components or we would not have nuclear power.

        1. One of the definitions in the BRB for element is: a substance that cannot be resolved by chemical means into simpler substances (chemistry).

        2. If you broke it down into its constituent nuclear components, you would
          a) no longer have an element to analyse,
          b) probably change the element to a different element and
          c) have a bloody big explosion.
          An element is the smallest particle that can be analysed using chemical means.

  13. About a ***/*** for me today, brain a tad slow following the weekends festivities! 8d was always ‘Dick’ in cheshire which threw me a bit, favourites 6d and 18a, wellcome to the new bloggers.

  14. Great fun for an overcast monday morning. Got completely stuck on the the top left corner, should have had a coffee before putting Apertisers in for 10a without checking the letters off (silly schoolboy error). Got 8d from seen & followed however spotted dick I’ve heard of but spotted dog never, only as a character in the woodentops.
    Thanks forgetting me out of a jam Libellule. Brilliant work by the setter.

  15. What a great day! Wonderful puzzle, loved it all, and now Lisicki has beaten Williams. On the other hand, Robson is out, bummer. I needed hint to know the “why” of 7d, not knowing the first thing about boxing; two people beating the daylights out of each other. Thanks to setter and hinter.

    1. Yes – I agree about the boxing. Know nothing about it and can’t see any fun in watching two people half kill each other in the name of sport. Funny old Wimbledon this year – big names going down like flies. A pity about Laura Robson but she’s got plenty of time – she’s very young.

  16. Getting the hang of Rufus’ Mondays, No particular hold ups, no electric friends or hints required, and a personal best time…but woefully slow compared with the Tyros.

    Thanks for the review Libellule , as always clear and concise.

    Thanks to Rufus for a lovely start to the day.

  17. Almost finished but not quite because I had no idea that engrave meant the same thing as chase. Got 18 but didn’t like it, a ford is not a crossing for pedestrians in particular but cars, carts, horses or anything else trying to get across a river. I put in 8 though I’d never heard of it, I thought the pudding was spotted dick.
    Any way must go, I’m engraving a pretty girl tonight.

    1. Agree with you regarding 18a – I’m pretty certain I’ve only ever ‘forded’ in a car and never on foot – it was a special treat when I was a child to take the route home via the ford – especially exciting after heavy rain.

    2. A ford is a place on a river where the water is shallow enough to cross. It is not defined how it is crossed, just that it can be crossed. You can cross it in a car, on a cart, on horseback, on foot,, on pogo stick if you like, it is still a ford. In fact, I believe that if you buy yourself a dictionary and look up ‘ford’ the first definition you will find is along the lines of ‘a place where a river is shallow enough to cross by wading’.

  18. Enjoyed it very much, some very nice clues – 12a, 15a, 23d, 8d for example.
    But I felt 6d was descriptive rather than cryptic, and I wondered if the redundant word ‘required’ in 1a was being quite fair – also, if x is said to be ‘in’ y, doesn’t that suggest y is a separate word around x, not that the answer actually is y?
    But maybe that’s the idea of a crossword – to tease…
    And perhaps the very purpose of life is – to cope with unfairness? :-)


    1. Say (EG) in Union (alliance) means Loyalty (allegiance), perhaps the ‘required’ is superfluous, but I can see no problem with the rest of the clue

      1. I think I got my algebra a bit muxed ip. As you say, the basic clue structure is OK. It was really just the ‘required’ that threw me. Can’t think now why I found it so irritating, but I did.

  19. If you tried to walk across the ford in our town, you’d get very wet. Not the best of clues.

      1. But in pre-20th century times, that was how you got across a river. See the legend of St Christopher. Take off shoes and socks, hitch up clothes, carry belongings on head or upper back. Best foot foremost, and do not attempt with a flood tide.
        And in parts of the tropics, it still is the everyday pedestrian means of crossing a river. Look right, left, then right again…
        For crocodiles, that is.

    1. No – where is she? She’ll get such> a telling off when she returns – no paper work completed in advance again! :roll:

  20. Thoroughly enjoyable, pleasant tussle.
    No maritime or service clues.
    Many thanks Rufus, and thanks Libellule for the review.

  21. Didn’t get 18A.. missed the obvious make of car that fitted _O_D but would never have thought of one of those as a “way for pedestrians”. Otherwise **/***

  22. Thanks to Rufus and Libellule for the review and hints. I found this very tricky, I am beginning to think I’m never going to be able to complete a puzzle again. I got to the last six clues and hit a brick wall. Having used the hints, I don’t think I could have got any of them. Was 3*/3* for me. Favourites were 29a and 20d. Late blogging due to trying to get the car fixed. No real progress though, I think it’s interferring with my solving.

  23. Was thrown for a moment by 21a. It was obviously an anagram of HOUSE IN but for once ‘awful’ was not the indicator but the definition. Couldn’t at first see the relevance of ‘in conversion’ until the penny dropped.

  24. The clue for 11a in the iPad app version is simply: “An attractive bar”. Liked 7d for its cleverness.

  25. Enjoyable as usual, thank you Rufus. Got 18a and 8d from the wordplay, but had never heard of spotted dog and always thought of a ford as a crossing for a car rather than pedestrians. Had to wait till we got home today to check the hints and BRB. Many thanks Libellule for the explanations.

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