DT 27316 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27316

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27316

Hints and tips by scchua

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

I’d give this slightly less than 2* for difficulty, being slightly held up at the end, and 3* for enjoyment.  Thanks Jay.

P.S. If you still find the mechanics of the hints a mystery, you should read the following, which should help in understanding.

Definitions are underlined in the clues (in blue).

Words in blue are lifted from the clues.

Italicised words are instructions for constructing the answer. Parentheses following these enclose the indicators from the clues. Eg. Reversal of(up, in a down clue).

[xxx;yyy] denotes that a synonym for xxx or yyy is required.

{ } are used to give the order of construction. Eg. Reversal of(up, in a down clue) AB + C is different from Reversal of(up, in a down clue) {AB + C}.

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    Late show of hesitation during calls for doubles (4,7)

{DEAD RINGERS} : [for which “late” is a euphemism] + { [an expression;a show of hesitation] contained in(during) [calls on the phone] }.

Defn: Not alcoholic drinks.


9a    Various animals emerge in a novel? (9)

{MENAGERIE} : Anagram of(novel) EMERGE IN A.

10a    The girl with a red top or fleece (5)

{SHEAR} : [pronoun used to refer to “the girl”] plus(with) A + 1st letter of(top) “red”.

Defn: As a verb.

11a    Permissiveness of times shown in non-church people (6)

{LAXITY} : [symbol for “to multiply”;”times”] contained in(shown in) [the flock;the people who do belong to a church, but are not part of the clergy].

12a    Peak Practice’s opening leads to popular, clean broadcast (8)

{PINNACLE} : 1st letter of(…’s opening) “Practice” plus(leads to) [popular;following the lastest fad] + anagram of(broadcast) CLEAN.

13a    Drake losing heart – trick is to spread out (6)

{DEPLOY} : “Drake” minus its 3 inner letters(losing heart) + [a trick;a stratagem to deceive].

15a    Past life changed, without a year for a feeling such as this (4-4)

{SELF-PITY} : Anagram of(changed) { “Past life” minus(without) “a”} + [abbrev. for “year”].

Defn: A feeling you might wallow in.

18a    Rabbit’s spicy, having been peppered with this? (8)

{BUCKSHOT} : [an adult male rabbit]‘S + [burningly spicy].

Answer: The “this” in the defn. More dangerous than pepper for the rabbit, and also for you, if you bite on one that’s been missed by the chef.

19a    Golf – after mother fetched grub (6)

{MAGGOT} : [the letter represented by “golf” in the phonetic alphabet] placed after(after) [an informal term for “mother”] + [fetched;obtained].

21a    Boss of kitchen sacking female over a problem (8)

{HEADACHE} : [overall boss of a kitchen (4,4)] minus(sacking) [abbrev. for “female”] containing(over, as an overcoat might contain you) A.

Defn: A figurative one might give you a literal one – if you think too hard about it.

23a    A few words from Romeo, in poor shape (6)

{PHRASE} : [the letter represented by “Romeo” in the phonetic alphabet] contained in(in) anagram of(poor) SHAPE.

Defn: A few word together, but making sense, of course.

26a    Struggles to take in Western perspectives (5)

{VIEWS} : [struggles;competes for] containing(to take in) [abbrev. for “Western”].

27a    Creature from another planet leading one with a line (9)

{MARSUPIAL} : [another planet, not a million miles away] + [leading over one’s opponents] + [Roman numeral for “one”] plus(with) A + [abbrev. for “line”].

Defn: … having no placenta.

They might look a bit like they’re from another planet (actually they’re from the other side of this planet).



28a    Saboteur worried by article nearby (11)

{THEREABOUTS} : Anagram of(worried) SABOTEUR placed after(by, in an across clue) [an article in grammar].

Defn: … but where exactly is not given.


1d    Slow copper left journalist with such cheeks (7)

{DIMPLED} : [slow;not smart] + [abbrev. for a small coin in British currency, now made of copper-plated steel] + [abbrev. for “left”]+ [abbrev. for a “journalist”].

Defn: The adjective for such cheeks or other parts of the physique:


2d    Appropriate name in a divorcee (5)

{ANNEX} : [abbrev. for “name”] contained in(in) { [a;one] + [a divorcee; short form for the woman who used to be married to so-and-so].

Defn: As a verb.

3d    Just ego is hurt – badly (9)

{RIGHTEOUS} : Anagram of(badly) EGO IS HURT.

4d    Never run-of-the-mill, except for the first half (4)

{NARY} : [run-of-the-mill;nothing unusual] minus(except for) the first 4 out of its 8 letters(the first half).

Answer:  In dialect, a variant of ne’er.

5d    Small hole on ship is what attracts attention to viewer (8)

{EYELINER} : [a small hole, eg. in a needle] placed above(on, in a down clue) [a ship, especially one for cruises].

…attention to what again?

…and maybe a bit too much of a good thing:

6d    Name of star oddly featuring in tabloid (5)

{SUSAN} : 1st and 3rd letters of(oddly) “star” contained in(featuring in) [the name of a British tabloid]. With a tabloid, a star might very well be oddly featured.

She’s never been on Page 3…but she has, but, then, she hasn’t got the same name (and that’s another hint).


7d    Preschool carer – really heartless (7)

{NURSERY} : [a carer, eg. as found in the school sickroom] + “really” minus all its inner letters(heartless).

8d    Charming fellow making a deep impression (8)

{FETCHING} : [abbrev. for a “fellow”] + [making a deep impression in a plate with acid]. And of course, that charming fellow might tempt a lady up to his place just to see some of those artistic impressions – induce to seduce? .

14d    Implements choice on cuts (8)

{PICKAXES} : [choice;the best of its kind] plus(on, in a down clue) [cuts down with an implement, eg. a tree].

Defn: As a noun.

16d    Could one throw light on future developments? (9)

{FLASHBULB} : Cryptic defn: Reference to an old-fashioned method of lighting scenes captured for later developing in the darkroom. It was an advance from the still older method of igniting magnesium powder and potassium chlorate.


17d    Friendliness of posh bloke up before one in residence (8)

{BONHOMIE} : Reversal of(up) [British slang for a person of wealth or social standing;a posh bloke – perhaps not Beckham] placed above(before, in a down clue) { [Roman numeral for “one”] contained in(in) [a residence, your own or a public institution shared with others like you].

18d    Rich people supporting live acts (7)

{BEHAVES} : [a collective term for those who possess, especially material wealth;the rich people] placed below(supporting, in a down clue) [to live;to exist, as Hamlet once asked].

Defn: As a verb.

20d    Still worried about engineers providing a framework for growth (7)

{TRELLIS} : Anagram of(worried) STILL containing(about) [abbrev. for the engineering branch of the British Army].

22d    Agree to get rid of new item of value (5)

{ASSET} : [to agree to;to concur with] minus(get rid of) [abbrev. for “new”].

24d    So long a day that is universal (5)

{ADIEU} : A + [abbrev. for “day”] + [abbrev. for “id est”;that is] + [abbrev. for “universal”, eg. in British film classification].

25d    Amount charged about right for release (4)

{FREE} : [an amount charged, eg. for professional services] containing(about) [abbrev. for “right”].

Defn: As a verb.

The Quick crossword pun: (docked} + {hearse} + {hoarders} = {doctor’s orders}

ARVE Error: need id and provider

81 comments on “DT 27316

  1. I enjoyed this puzzle thank you Jay – particularly liked 21a for some reason ! Thanks Scchua for your review, hints and beautiful photos as usual !

  2. Perhaps a little harder than 2* maybe 2.5 but quite enjoyable apart from 16d and 18d which I did not enjoy at all. Fav for me was 20d and 24d.
    Off to use some of my new made Damson jam in a Victoria sponge so there will be cake for all those in the naughty corner!
    Thx to the setter and to Scchua whose hints I both needed and managed to unpick today.

    1. I look forward to sampling the cake on Saturday Brian, now what can I do to get sent to the naughty corner…

  3. A one by one puzzle. Not easily yielding solutions. I too went down the alcoholic route for 1ac and put Roundabouts at 28ac. 6d is a lovely clue. as is 24d. which held me up. Does anybody know what I can do with 80lb of walnuts? polite replies only please.

      1. Seriously you can make bread, put them in a salad, I have heard you can actually make walnut jam, I am sure there are lots of recipes online if you look… :-)

    1. Pickle them?
      Never tried pickleling them myself but certainly the shop bought ones are lovely (especially with ham and cheese on a baked potato)

      1. Do not pickle walnuts; the nastiest thing you will ever put in your mouth. Imagine cottonwool soaked in old vinegar

      2. At this time of year, would they not have formed their shells? I don’t think you can pickle them at this stage.

    2. Pickling is good (just in time for Christmas too) but I’d also go down the bread route – walnut bread is absolutely delicious but not something I’m allowed to enjoy any more since Mrs Skempie is allergic to just about all nuts and won’t allow them in the house.

    3. 80lbs is an awful lot of walnuts. Don’t know what to suggest – you’d only use a few ounces in bread and salads and cakes. I’ve never had a pickled one – don’t know that I fancy it particularly! Won’t they keep just as they are?

      1. They would dry out Kath and end up being a bit like the ones you get for Christmas. Fresh walnuts are a totally different beastie

        1. Oh – not such a good plan then! Wish my wellies would dry out – trench foot progressing rapidly. :sad:

    4. Get a food processor, spend about 2 hours grinding them into dust and then chuck them in the bin.

      Alternatively, and more politely, you could then put them into the compost.

      I don’t like walnuts……

    5. Our baby walnut tree produced its first and only walnut this year. We had half each and it was delicious. I think it may be some time before we need to wonder how to preserve the crop :)

    6. Would go well with cous cous, cold meat, and parsley, and lemon zest. You’d probably need to roast an elephant To use up 80lbs of walnuts:-)

    7. 80 lbs of walnuts? I suggest inviting friends in for a pickling party, put the results into pretty jars and they make excellent presents. I have a recipe I could give you. :-)

    8. Actually, 80lbs of walnuts constitutes a fair wack. I would suggest that after the pickling/bread making, etc you should get yourself a stroot trooders leesinse (said in best ‘Allo ‘Allo voice) and get yourself down to your local market and make a few bob.

    9. I asked husband what he would do with 80lb of walnuts. His first response was “Cry” which didn’t seem terribly helpful but then a little glint came into his eyes and he said “Sell them”.

    10. I bake frequently with ground almonds as a substitute for flour, I can’t see any reason not to use ground almonds instead. Walnuts are to my taste a little bitter , so use extra sugar and use in a chocolate cake is my suggestion. Such a cake will be more dense but also alot more moist and delicious. Experiment ! Bakewell tarts with walnut etc !

  4. I enjoyed this today though not needing the hints, thanks scchua, I did need perservation and help from electronic friends! so a three star for me! 16d and 18a were my favourites, apologies to Kath ;-)

  5. Found this relatively easy after yesterdays struggle. 1d held me up even tho’ I had the across clues in place. 15a best clue for me. **/**** rating for me. Also thought the ‘pun’ in the Quickie was excellent. Thanx to Compiler and to Scchua for review.

  6. Nice puzzle, nice pictures agree with the star ratings, 16D was my favourite clue thanks to jay & scchua might have a crack at the toughie.

  7. Heavy going for me today, with a series of “ah!” moments as each answer fell into place. I ended up putting “norm” in for 4D even though I didn’t feeel good about it. 8D defeated me. I so wanted to make it Beeching. Well, he certainly made a deep impression, didn’t he!

    So many clues to like, but I loved 16D and 18A. Many thanks to the setter and to Scchua for the hints.

  8. Another enjoyable Wednesday offering. 5D held me up for a while as I couldn’t get EYEPIECE out of my mind – got there in the end though which meant I could get 15A (my fave rave today). Too many good clues to list all the others.
    We’ve got a strange yellow thing in the sky today – I don’t think it’ll be there much longer though.
    Incidentally, I thought the quickie pun was superb today.

  9. Well all seemed to enjoy today, me included , was also on the’ alcoholic route’ for1A until 1D was solved , liked 1a-what about doubles for late campanologists! just an idle thought. Can’t disagree with Scchua’s **/***-great pics -thanks

  10. Like everyone else I enjoyed this. I thought it was a bit easier than some Wednesdays – 2* for difficulty and 4* for enjoyment.
    I was slow with the second part of 5d – couldn’t get eyeglass out of my head and the double S could have been the ship but couldn’t explain the rest – got there in the end.
    My last two were 15a and 17d.
    I spent a few minutes trying to make the 3d anagram out of the wrong letters with the indicator being hurt and the definition being badly.
    I didn’t know that marsupials didn’t have placentas – thought that they were defined as having pouches.
    I liked 10a and 7 and 8d. I haven’t decided yet whether my favourite is 18 or 21a.
    With thanks to Jay and scchua.
    Stuff to do now but going to try Toughie later on.

      1. Thanks – just had a look. They seem to have good treads, if that’s the right word, which is a bit of a bonus. Managed to go completely A over T a week or so ago while collie and I were escaping from a rather dodgy enCOWnter! :sad:

        1. Dogs and cows don’t mix very well. Please, never never walk between a cow and her calf with a dog.

          1. Thanks for your advice and please don’t take what I’m about to say as my being snippy or bolshie or whatever but;
            1) I’m very aware of this – I’m a country person (had been about to say girl but, at 64, perhaps not appropriate) – I grew up in the middle of 10,000 acres of hills and common land, very close to where BD lives, with loose horses and sheep – if a dog was seen in the middle of a flock of sheep the farmer was within his rights to shoot even if the dog was not chasing the sheep;
            2) Collie and I regularly walk amongst cows so she is used to them and ignores them;
            3) We were on holiday in Suffolk so in unchartered territory – surrounded by lovely fields with cows in them. I DID ask locals if the cows were OK before we went in – everyone said that they were fine;
            4) They were young heifers so obviously no young;
            5) I think that we just happened to be unlucky – the cows felt a bit frisky that morning!
            6) I’m REALLY not stupid!!

            1. Golly Gee Willickers, Kath. Not knowing your country roots, I really doubt that Miffypops meant that advice anything but kindly.

  11. I think just over 2* for me as I just couldn’t get 5 or 8 down for no good reason.

    I liked 11 and 28 a.

  12. ***/*** for me. Reasonably entertaining. Liked 1a, 12a, 27a and 5d which perhaps might not occur at once to the males of the species! Thanks Jay and indeed Scchua for explaining one or two answers I had but knew not why.

  13. Very enjoyable crossword from Jay as always and a terrific review from sschua as always, many thanks to both.

  14. Thanks to Jay and to scchua for the review and hints. An enjoyable puzzle, but tricky in parts. Had penny drop moments with 1&2d, had to really think about 18d&4d which was last in. Favourites were 18&27a. Was 2*/4* for me. Hope the weather holds for tomorrow’s gutter cleaning.

  15. I couldn’t get on with this at all today. Probably distracted by small grandson and the preparations for quince jelly. I needed all the hints I could get, so thanks to Scchua and Jay. :-)

  16. Challenging crossword for me today but enjoyable. Liked 18a in particular. Last one in 8d as I, too, was looking for a charming fellow, eventually tumbled. Thanks to Jay and scchua, though hints only needed to explain 16d.

  17. I absolutely loved this. I was exactly on his wavelength and didn’t need the hints. Best one this year for me.
    Thanks to both.

  18. Scchua, can you explain the ‘u’ in 27a. I don’t understand ‘leading over one’s opponents’

    1. The ‘u’ goes with the ‘p’ to make ‘up’, as in “Spurs were two up at half-time”.

        1. Thanks for that. I enjoyed it so much I would have hated to look at the answers and seen that ominous “one wrong” :)

  19. The usual Weds treat from Jay so thanks to him and scchua.

    Won’t mention the weather here :grin:

      1. I said I wouldn’t mention the fact that it was 27C this afternoon and we had a rather splendid lunch sat outside the bar at the end of the village where there is a great view of the mountains. Have to say it’s most unusual weather for this time of year.

        Bet my e-duck avoids your e-thump :grin:

        1. you win, friends arrive back tonight from hols and i’ve had their conservatory / kennel roof rebuilt. Not been wet windy at all…..

          1. I’m back to the UK in a couple of weeks so packing the Arctic gear. Remind me again why I live in Spain!

  20. Someone may have already said this, but, pickled walnuts are made with the whole fruit in the spring, long before the shell forms. As far as todays puzzle goes, my partner was not too impressed on the whole.

      1. Thank you. Just discovered this blog. Will be here again as it seems like a very friendly place to be.

        1. Welcome from me too and hope to see you here again, we are a very friendly bunch of . . .

          I’m off to bed now – in the chair again tomorrow.

    1. Welcome to the blog Cherry.

      The answer is the final half of the word ORDINARY (run-of-the-mill).

  21. A late one for me today as I had to go out at 6.30 this morning. Thanks to Jay for a tough but enjoyable puzzle (3*/3* for me).

    I couldn’t get 4d even with the hint so had to peek between the brackets. Thanks Scchua.

    Clues like 18a make me uneasy as a rabbit lover, but it is a great clue so I’ll forgive Jay for that!

    27a across reminded me of a big embarrassment from my schooldays. Our biology teacher asked the name for animals which carry their young in a pouch, and I replied municipal creatures :oops:

  22. Late for various reasons,mother , sisters etc. Nice puzzle, some pennies took a long time to drop,i.e.1a and 1d.Thanks to Jay and scchua.

  23. I really enjoy the DT crosswords, and very often need a bit of help from this blog, which I appreciate, but am I the only person who finds all these ladsmag pictures quite offensive? Seems so, judging by the comments and I suppose most of your correspondents will think I am just an old spoilsport, but there is a big issue at the moment about perceptions of women/porn/pressure on girls etc; which I do think is partly fired by the perpetuation of such material (viz the campaign to remove same from shelves) and I am sad to see it here.

  24. Hello all – first time posting. I just wanted to comment from the other side of the cryptic crossoword divide… those of us who find it incredibly difficult! I spent – literally – over a WEEK on this one (enjoyably!), and was only missing two answers. A big thanks to the setter and to the moderators of this site. I’ve been lurking for well over a year, and really appreciate all the work that goes into this site.

    1. Welcome to the blog Billericay Dicky

      You are not the only one who finds some puzzles to be difficult, but there is no substitute for practice. Keep at it!

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