DT 27275 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27275

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27275

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment **

Apart from trying to fit Britain into 5 across, this was one of those puzzles where I looked at a clues and then wrote in the answers.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought. You can also add your assessment by selecting from one to five stars at the bottom of the post.


1a    Singular cure for captain (7)
{SKIPPER} – S(ingular) followed by a verb meaning to cure a herring ready for my favourite breakfast

5a    Bishop meets girl in country (7)
{BOLIVIA} – B(ishop) followed by a girl’s name – I tried to put Britain in here; B(ishop) + RITA + IN, but changed it as soon as I saw 6 down

9a    Last in bar, I check bolt (5)
{RIVET} – the final letter (last) of baR followed by I and a verb meaning to check

10a    Flare, easy to carry around? (4,5)
{VERY LIGHT} – a cryptic definition of this coloured flare which is fired from a pistol

11a    Financial security is what a postie wants? (4,6)
{EASY STREET} – I suppose a postman would want one of these, but it’s very weak

12a    A recurrent air? (4)
{ARIA} –the whole of this &Lit/all-in-one clue provides the definition – the A from the clue followed by the reversal (recurrent) of AIR

14a    It’s one’s characteristic habit to back the Constitution? (6,6)
{SECOND NATURE} – a verb meaning to back or support followed by constitution or temperament

18a    Commuter initially running fast to get to other side of station (7,5)
{CHARING CROSS} – the initial letter of Commuter followed by verbs meaning running fast and to get to other side

21a    Nothing left? Almost gone (4)
{LOVE} – L(eft) followed by most of a word meaning gone or finished

22a    Flower in picture to get drawn out (10)
22a    Flower in picture, next to paper kite (10) – newspaper version
{SNAPDRAGON} – a picture or photo followed by a phrasal verb meaning to get drawn out (4,2) [or a paper kite]

25a    They may help one along the way (9)
{SIGNPOSTS} – a cryptic definition of objects that point in the direction of towns and villages

26a    Wild dog shot after row (5)
{DINGO} – a shot or attempt after a row or noise

27a    Delay South American writer and daughter (7)
{SUSPEND} – S(outh) followed by a two-letter abbreviation for American, a writing implement and D(aughter)

28a    Mean to declare silver (English) (7)
{AVERAGE} – a verb meaning to declare or state followed by the chemical symbol for silver and E(nglish)


1d    Shelter made from loose stones, indefinite number (6)
{SCREEN} – some loose stones on the face of a mountain followed by the letter which represent an indefinite number in mathematics

2d    Lay out trendy waistcoat (6)
{INVEST} – this verb meaning to lay out or spend comes from a charade of a two-letter adjective meaning trendy and another word for a waistcoat

3d    Are its pies fresh? (10)
{PÂTISSERIE} – another &Lit clue, this one is an anagram (fresh) of ARE ITS PIES

4d    A rambler right and left (5)
{ROVER} – R(ight) followed by an adverb meaning left or surplus

5d    Local worker in bank, sympathetic (9)
{BARTENDER} – someone who works in a local pub is a charade of a bank at the mouth of a river or harbour and an adjective meaning sympathetic

6d    Girl, violently ill, supported by youth leader (4)
{LILY} – an anagram (violently) of ILL followed by (supported by in a down clue) the initial letter (leader) of youth

7d    Lively Spanish port run by old American (8)
{VIGOROUS} – the Spanish port chosen as an alias by one of our regular commenters followed by R(un), O(ld) and a two-letter abbreviation for American – yes, the same abbreviation that was used in 27 across

8d    A pangolin perhaps in area — tent being abandoned (8)
{ANTEATER} – an anagram (being abandoned) of AREA TENT

13d    Rest after musical game for children (4-6)
{CAT’S-CRADLE} – a rest used, for example, for an old-fashioned telephone after a Lloyd Webber musical

15d    Arranged grandiose changes (9)
{ORGANISED} – an anagram (changes) of GRANDIOSE

16d    Ordinary copper makes a register of eye experts (8)
{OCULISTS} – O(rdinary) followed by the chemical symbol for copper and a verb meaning makes a register

17d    Miss boxing star in US city (3,5)
{LAS VEGAS} – a miss or young lady around (boxing) the fifth-brightest star in the sky

ARVE Error: need id and provider

19d    Notice article about details in programme (6)
{AGENDA} – a two-letter notice and the indefinite article around some details or information

20d    Last cut — heart, again! (6)
{ENCORE} – a three-letter word meaning last or remainder without its final letter (cut) and followed by a heart or nucleus

23d    Finished a lasagne? (5)
{PASTA} – an adjective meaning finished or ended followed by the A from the clue gives something of which lasagne is an example (indicated by the question mark)

24d    Some mousetraps evident in part of church (4)
{APSE} – hidden (some) inside the clue

In the absence of Bufo, Deep Threat will be here later with the Toughie.

The Quick crossword pun: (overran} + {doubt} = {over and out}

47 comments on “DT 27275

  1. I have to agree with you this was a fairly easy puzzle and not taxing at all
    Thanks for the review which I suspect not many required.

  2. Thank you setter, not too taxing, which was helpful as we are packing up to go the lovely Isle of Mull for 10 days. Keeping up with the puzzles will be difficult – never quite knowing when the papers will arrive ! Thank you BD for the hints – I think Mary might have something to say about 3d !

  3. The only clue that held me up (briefly) today was 13D – I glanced at the second word (with just the checking letters in) and decided that it had to be BRIDGE – took a few minutes before I came up with the musical for some reason, but hum ho.

    Quite enjoyed 5A and 1D.

    Quite getting into holiday mood already, this time next week we’ll be in big silver bird on the way to Cannes.

  4. Well, I thought it was lovely, and lots of fun. I did have to google pangolin, though. Really liked 3D and 1A. Thanks to the setter today and to BD for the review.

  5. I’d say 2* for difficulty, if only because I got quite a long way down the across clues before having a single answer, and 3* for enjoyment.
    Once I had a few answers all the rest followed without too much trouble, apart from 13d which was my last one in.
    Do ‘we’ think this is Ray T? It should be his week, I think, but no Queen and no innuendo, unless I’ve missed something. All his other trademarks are there so I suppose it probably is.
    I liked 10a (once I’d stopped trying to make it an anagram) and 18a and 3 and 24d.
    With thanks to Ray T (I think) and BD.
    Garden looks more like a desert than it has for years and nineteen year old cat has taken to lying on husband’s desk on the keyboard – she did quite a lot of ‘typing’ during the night – oh dear!
    PS – BD, the clue in the paper for 22a is “Flower in picture, next to paper kite”

      1. Forgot to look at the little crossword! :roll: Oh good – so glad that it’s not Ray T – thought he was losing his grip as I’d managed to convince myself that it WAS him.

          1. It was all wrong – I was just being dim again. :sad: I was expecting it to be him today so was easily fooled – should have looked at the quickie then I wouldn’t have been.
            In my defence (squirming now!) I did think that 3d could have been one of his – it’s just the kind of clue that Mary hates in his crosswords.

              1. Yes – she does like anagrams but she doesn’t like this all in one type clue – I think she usually says something along the lines of something is doing double duty. I do hope she doesn’t mind someone speaking for her in her absence!

  6. My rating would be the same as BD. I have absolutely no idea who set this one, and could not even hazard a guess.
    Thanks to all.

  7. I don’t agree with the rating. I had quite a few left at the top for a while.

    Too much GK (which was not general to me anyway).
    Had never heard of pangolin, or the flare, or the 5th brightest star (although the solution was easy enough) or the Spanish port.

    I thought 25a was limp and 20d was tortured.


  8. Like Skempie I tried to fit Bridge in to 13d, so that was my last one in. I must learn to break the sentences up in the clues, as I made the mistake of linking musical & game which caused me quite a bit of bother. Hopefully I’ll become wiser as time passes (or not). Thanks setter, and to BD, who seems to be filling a lot of extra shifts at present. It is much appreciated.

  9. Thanks to the setter, a wee tad unexciting and untaxing perhaps but better than I could do. Thanks also to BD for the amusing review.

  10. Having had the last two weeks of crossword solving disrupted by the process of relocation form Texas to Delaware, I thought it would take me some time to get back up to speed. Not the case with this one – I totally agree with BD’s assessment. I needed some help from the BRB including, somewhat unexpectedly, finding pangolin. Thanks to the setter for providing a puzzle to get me back in the groove.

    1. Wlcome to the East Coast and DelMarVa, Senf. You’re in my time zone now. I hope you’re enjoying our absolutely stunning (at the moment) weather.

  11. This was an odd one for me, hardly got any on an initial read through, then once I’d found an easy way in, it all built out quickly from there. So I was really needing the checking letters to make progress.

  12. Nice easy one today – I screwed up by convincing myself that the first word in 18a was CHASING – after wasting a lot of time trying to find a 5 letter word containing ?R?S? to go along with CHASING, I eventually saw the light and then everything went swimmingly.

    Does anyone know of a good method for eliminating ants from the lawn – I recently tried nematodes and they proved less than useless – sigh!

    Thanks for the blog.

    1. I just give ants a good old dose of ant powder just after I’ve cut the lawn. If you cut it right, you disturb the top of the nest and all the little buggers come out to do some repairs which is when you hit ’em with the powder (means they carry it back indoors with them). It can take 2 or 3 goes, but tends to get rid of them although at the expense of having a slightly discoloured and patch lawn for a few days.

  13. Agree with BD’s rating though I’d probably add another star at least for enjoyment as I really do enjoy finishing a puzzle swiftly! Thanks to setter and BD.

  14. Very pleasant puzzle today, not too taxing but fun. Especially liked 10a and 18a, both ‘smile’ clues.
    Last in was 20d which did hold me up for a while.
    Thx to the Setter for the good puzzle and to BD as always even though I got through this one without the hints!

  15. Easy-peasy does it. I even knew what a pangolin was. The only thing that held me up was thinking 16d had two “c”s, but the penny dropped soon as the answers for 25a and 27a were so obvious. I do like an easy one from time to time. Thanks to all

      1. As a showman I would say yes but as a singer then Roy Orbison was leagues ahead. Just listen to “Pretty Woman” – it’s timeless.

        1. Loved Roy Orbison – and loved his contributions to the Travelling Wilburys, but sad only three of them left now..

        2. I loved Roy Orbison – amazing voice. I always felt so sorry for him – he had such a sad life. No wonder most of his songs weren’t too cheerful. I liked Wilburys and Elvis too.

          1. Even older than who? Is that appalling grammar? I rather suspect that it is but can’t think of any other way of saying it!

      2. Not for me I’m afraid. I used to quite enjoy hearing a bit of Elvis now and again, but then I got a job in my local pub. Every night, one customer used to come in and put out two Elvis CDs on, but he put enough money in to make sure that each one was played continuously six times ! After 3 months of this, we’d had a change of Landlord and the time came for new CDs to be loaded to the juke box. I managed to persuade him that the Elvis Cds had to go, that evening all hell broke loose and consequently they got put back on again. After a couple more months (by this time I’d left and was working in the East End) he had a right go at me for letting him put them back.
        As a side note, the bloke who kept putting these CDs on once complained because someone else had put some music on via the other machine and it had interrupted his Elvis listening and could it be rejected please.

  16. Very enjoyable. I actually think ‘Britain’ works better for 5a although I did get the correct answer first time. 16d crops up occasionally as does 24d. 18a was my favourite. Thanks to the compiler.

  17. Thanks to the setter and to Big Dave for the review and hints. Was a gentle puzzle today, but I got a bit held up in the SE corner. Some clues raised a smile, favourites were 10&18a. Last in was 13d. Walked along the disused railway from Keswick then to Latrigg, had some great views of the town & Derwent Water. Puzzle was 2*/2* for me.

  18. Kath Mary and CSue, I’m filing papers that I shall be away until Sunday Evening. Weather forecast not great for the tent but hey ho. Cynth and Cuth have their bags packed, I’m still in a panic a la Mary pre Scotland

  19. Am I the only one who quails when faced by a *difficulty rating? ‘Many a time and oft’ I’ve come to grief on a so-called easy-peasy’ puzzle. (To my great shame, there are some setters who’s puzzles I simply cannot do, regardless as to difficulty.) Luckily this wasn’t one of them, and being able to complete a puzzle always adds to my enjoyment. I liked several of the clues, notably 5a, 10a, 14a, 18a, 22a; and 3d. Thoroughly enjoyed Big Dave’s hints and pictures. Many thanks to setter and to Big Dave.

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