DT 27343 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27343 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27343 (Hints)

Big Dave’s Crossword Club

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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.


1a Dejected fellow killed in battle (10)
This rarely-used adjective meaning dejected comes from a charade of a fellow followed by a word meaning killed in battle

6a Hippie girl mostly fashionable (4)
Most of a hippie girl gives this adjective meaning fashionable

10a Small attendance at theatre where Oliver was produced (9)
Split as (4,5) this would indicate a small attendance at the theatre, but it’s actually the type of premises where Oliver Twist was brought up

12a Increase in numbers opposing euthanasia quotient (13)
A word that means opposing euthanasia (3-4) followed by a quotient or allocation

19a One taking off Dior dresses in old days (8)
An anagram (dresses) of DIOR inside a word meaning the old days

24a Donation from whistle-blower backing politician (9)
A two-letter word meaning from followed by the reversal (backing) of a whistle-blowing sports official and a right-wing politician

26a Ardent lament (4)
Two definitions – an adjective meaning ardent and a lamentation over the dead

27a Precautionary measure, holding funeral without name (10)
This precautionary measure, used during times of unrest, is derived by putting a funeral or burial around (without) N(ame)


1d Copper has very strong clout (4)
The chemical symbol for copper followed by the musical notation for very strong or very loud

2d Waste a cup? (7)
The A from the clue followed by a cup awarded as a prize

3d Transport chief on paper means to keep slim (3,10)
This transport chief in The Railway Series (Thomas the Tank Engine) stories could also be a means to keep slim

4d Man encouraged to buy shares took strides about being unbalanced (8)
Put the name of the man you were encouraged to tell about the sell-off of British Gas shares inside a verb meaning took strides

ARVE Error: need id and provider

8d Does ex make a fresh start (5,5)
A charade of a verb meaning “does”, as in “someone who does the chores”, followed by a word meaning ex or deceased

13d Took no more bets for Enigma (6,4)
What a turf accountant does before the start of a race and an enigma or mystery

18d A delicacy that could make one fretful (7)
A cunningly disguised anagram (could make) of FRETFUL

23d Small young animal that may be produced by 19 (4)
S(mall) followed by a young, possibly feline, animal

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

As this is a Prize crossword, please don’t put any ANSWERS, whether WHOLE, PARTIAL or INCORRECT, or any ALTERNATIVE CLUES in your comment. If in doubt, leave it out!

Please read these instructions carefully. Offending comments may be redacted or, in extreme cases, deleted.

The Quick crossword pun: (caper} + {ceilidh} = {capercaillie}

Things have been quiet on the online Telegraph Puzzles site for a while now, so we had forgotten that the incompetence of those who maintain said site knows no bounds.

125 comments on “DT 27343 (Hints)

  1. Last time this happened it took quite a long time as I recall. Does anyone know what the problem is?

    1. 19a – the answer means an impersonater and is made up of an anagram of dior inside a word for old times.

  2. Thanks BD
    Do hope it’s not another prolonged cock-up.
    Last time it went on for months.
    Some of the reasons were quite inventive eg strong winds blew something down.
    Good old DT and IT!!

  3. This one was hard work but with some very clever clues such as 2d , 10a and 14a. Never come across 1a before so one for the memory bank (I wish!). Nice to see the return of an old friend in 4d.
    Thx to the setter and to BD where are the hints?

    1. Sorry just read the small note at the top. Don’t forget it’s a Saturday and most people in IT will off playing with their new XBox Ones. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cool.gif

  4. Done 19a now with a little help from the dark side I’m ashamed to admit. It was simple enough to get unaided.

      1. Mrs T and I had to do the “Boston Globe Compentium of Crosswords” book last night and this morning. Clues like “12 inches (4)” and “small orange (9)” have made us lose the will to live. Will send epitaph.

        1. Why not try the Guardian, Independant or FT puzzles. They’re all available on-line for free! Today’s Mudd (Dada here) in the FT is very good.

    1. Seems like it’s been down since sometime Friday (US East Coast time). Can’t access the puzzle site at all (neither can my Mum in Southampton). Anyway, thanks for the PDF – just made a cuppa and preparing to sit down and tackle it. Steve

  5. My rating for today is 2*/4*.

    Fortunately I didn’t need any hints to complete this enjoyable workout although I will need to check back later in the hope of getting an explanation of the parsing for 8d.

    I found the NW corner the hardest with 4d my last one in. This one may well flummox non-UK solvers.

    3d was my favourite picked from many excellent clues. 1a and 20d were new words for me but easily derived from the wordplay and confirmed by the BRB.

    Many thanks to Mr. Ron and in advance to BD for his forthcoming review.

    1. P.S. Despite the horrid back page adverts increasingly encroaching on crossword territory, I’m glad I subscribe to the paper version – particularly as we have an extremely reliable paperboy who will get a very good tip at Christmas!

      1. How true! It’s a constant source of annoyance to me that the crossword is invariably on the inside of the back page on a Saturday. However, as we’ve learned today, there are advantages in having the paper version and I didn’t really have any problems with this puzzle although, like you, 1a was a new word to me.

          1. Thanks Dave, that’s done it. Saturday would not be the same if it were not for the prize crossword and a good rugby match (Northampton V Newcastle) especially as Mrs C has been deposited at Beziers airport for a visit to Blighty

  6. It might be my frozen brain (the Kent coastline windchill factor was particularly “bracing” this morning) but I struggled mightily with this one today, the NW corner in particular. I have finished so-called Toughies in less time than this one.

    Thanks to the Mysteron for a serious workout for the grey matter.

    1. I’ve struggled really badly too – I wasn’t particularly surprised given the trouble that I’ve had almost every day this week, even with crosswords that most have found straightforward. Hearing that you’ve had trouble has cheered me up! I’m not convinced about my 4d answer – think it’s probably wrong although it fits with everything and means unbalanced.

      1. Kath, you are right about the definition being unbalanced. The parsing is a word meaning “took strides” with the name of a man inserted (about). Please see my reply below to Wayne about the man in question!

    2. Agreed, this took me into 3. * star Toughie time and I can’t remember a Saturday where on first reading I drew a total blank. Got there eventually . Thanks to setter and BD. What’s bugging me is I have heard of the Giovanniesque 1a answer but for the life of me I cannot remember in what context

  7. A bit of a poor show – I was there at 12.00 midnight last night waiting to print-off the grid as normal and all I got was an error message – how disappointing, I had real trouble sleeping without my nightly workout!!

    Anyway, I’ve done the old-fashioned version in the newspaper and it was a bit of a struggle – 1a was very obscure and I thought let the general standard down.

    All in all a disappointing day – off to West Ham v Chelsea later – I expect that to be pretty disappointing too!

  8. Thanks to our (elderly!) paperboy we have paper soon after 6 a.m. so can make early start and fortunately managed without hints today. First read through was forbidding but gradually all began to fall into place. 10a, 12a and 14a among favourite clues. Enjoyed this more than most Saturday offerings. Initially made two boo-boos with last word of 8d. and then grateful for crypticsue’s explanation as to correct answer. ***/***. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_scratch.gif

  9. Thank you ever so much for posting the puzzle Dave: if you can do anything about the cricket while you’re at it, it would be much appreciated! x

  10. I get the paper version so was able to start at 0630hrs. At first I wished I hadn’t bothered! Found this extremely hard (****) and although completed still don’t see the relevance of the first 3 letter word in 3d or the relevance of the mans name in 4d. Parsing 8d, again I couldn’t understand until reading Crypticsues explanation above.
    Not my most favourite Prize Crosswored by a long way, more in ‘Toughie’ land the ‘Back Page’, guess that’s why I stick to ‘Back Page’ only.
    ****/** for me today. Moan over.

    1. Wayne

      3d – is a reference to the name of one of the two transport managers in the Thomas the Tank Engine books

      4d – some time in the 80s when British Gas was privatised the advertising campaign to encourage people to buy shares implored people to tell the gentleman named in the answer to make sure he knew about the flotation.

      1. Ah – thanks for 4d – I do, vaguely, remember him now although I wouldn’t have remembered what shares he was supposed to be buying – just goes to show how much I’m affected by advertising! Alternatively it might also go to show what my memory is like!

      2. Rabbit Dave: Thanx for that, didn’t know the transport manager in Thomas the Tank Engine Books, will have to ask the grandchildren.
        Vaguely remember the chap from the British Gas advert.
        Thanx again.

  11. BD, can you do the hints without the site being available because it may go on for months, like last time, and I need a bit of help

      1. Yes I know. Thanks for doing it. I presume from your comment that they are coming. It’s just that we normally get them at around 11.00 after Brian Mathew ‘Sounds of the 60’s’

  12. Thanks to the setter and to Big Dave for the pdf. I managed this in the end, but it was very difficult. Most enjoyable too. 1a was a new word for me. Some really good clues. I needed electronic help on 24,25&27a. Favourite was 3d. Was 3*/4 * for me. Off to see the Gooners versus Soton this afternoon.

    1. Please give Arsenal a loud cheer from me, I’m from Portsmouth (Pompey) which should explain my comment.

  13. Really, really, really difficult. So glad to read that CS thought so too.
    This one has taken me a very long time. My brain hasn’t recovered enough for me to decide how much I enjoyed it!
    I’ve never heard of 1a but eventually with lots of letters in it became fairly obvious so looked it up – it’s an alternative spelling according to BRB although only the third letter is different.
    It took me ages to understand 8d but did in the end.
    I don’t really understand my answer to 24a – presume the last four letters are the politician but how the rest fits defeats me.
    I’m almost certain my 4d is wrong although it does mean unbalanced.
    Not sure how PC 16d is?
    I liked 10 and 14a and 13 and 22d. My favourite was 12a – really clever.
    With thanks to Mr Ron and, in advance, to anyone who will help me sort out my 4d.

    1. Kath – re your answer to 24a, split your first five letters as 2,3 (and remember there is a reversal, indicated by ‘backing’)

  14. A pleasantly more challenging crossword for a Saturday prize puzzle, which I enjoyed. Many thanks to the setter, whoever you are, and to BD for the pdf.

  15. Glad I’m not the only one who struggled with this one! ****/**** from me.
    1a was a new word for me too, twigged the answer from all the checkers and the wordplay and was amazed when it turned out to be in the BRB!

    Most enjoyable so thanks to Mysteron, BD and Phil.

  16. I have been thinking how clever I am – I’ve done the last three Saturday crosswords without the need for any hints – well, clever I aint,- I could barely get a single answer today, so thanks to BD for the hints; I think I’m getting there now

  17. Thank you very much BD for the hints today. This was difficult for us until we got going, & I was relieved when the hints appeared, especially for 1 across, a word I have never heard of before. I liked 10 across especially, so that’s my favourite. Thank you setter too. Hope you don’t have any more problems with the site.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif

  18. A bit slow, but only had trouble with 19A and 16D. The hint gave me 19A (Thanks, BD!) which finally gave me 16D. IA was a new word. I liked 12A and 8D particularly.

    Can some kind soul help me out with 11A in the Quickie?

  19. In my Chambers crossword dictionary 1a is spelt differently and nor can I find it in the BRB or am I too thick to find either?

    1. It’s on page 262, under the “fellow” in the answer – that then points to the alternative spelling which is on page 278 (all references are to the latest (12th) edition.

  20. After a two week lay off, back to puzzling.

    Didn’t find this one too hard so am surprised that some of the seasoned warriors had problems.

    Thanks for the hints although not needed.

    For once IPad downloaded with no probs, but the DT does need to get its online presence sorted.

    Now for the NTSPP.

  21. Gawd! On reading comments, not sure I want to tackle the techie problems of trying to print this out. I don’t even know what PDF and Adobe reader are. Having such severe DTs of withdrawal, despite computer illiteracy, I’ll have a bash.

  22. Thank you setter, enjoyed doing this on and off during the day whilst birdwatching at Hodbarrow, so for me it wasn’t too demanding. Thanks BD for your hard work with the hints as always.

      1. Yes ! We go every year and it is a complete lottery as to where the birds gather and display and drop into the reed bed. We were lucky this year and at one point they were almost right over us. The roost has grown to about 50k birds. A great sight and also the noise as they swoosh overhead !

          1. It really is one of the most amazing things that I’ve ever seen – I’d heard about it and wondered why people went on about it so much, then we saw one, not very far from here on an RSPB reserve a few years ago. Never seen it on TV but I’m pretty sure that it didn’t do it justice.

  23. I found today’s a little more challenging for a Saturday than normal and still wait to get 25a which I suspect will be a Doh! moment. Perhaps it is due to late night tuning in to events in Brisbane and the current abject batting performances from England? Very disappointing so far. 25a will drop into my head I am sure!

  24. Thanks for the puzzle Dave. I would be interested to know what they mean by “soon”. Across the pond that means a less than a few hours. It has been windy both here and in UK so perhaps the site got blown down again.

    1. Two down already and 12 hours play to go – batting out is clearly impossible so they’ll just have to score the 537 required. Only 513 to go :lol:

    2. Little Dave and pommers – http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-yawn.gif – but only because I’ve been dying to use this one and this is the first opportunity!

        1. Really sorry – I get pipped at the post so< often – I’m sorry I did it to you today. Would a little rose help? http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_rose.gif

  25. I dared the computer fears and printed the crossword. Not sure that was wise, this was ***** difficulty for me, but I GOT there in the end. I am totally knackered now, mentally wasted, but feeling pretty smug for all that. Thanks to BD, whose hints I needed today, and to setter. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-phew.gif

  26. What a relief for me to find that so many of the contributors to the blog also found this week’s prize puzzle really difficult! I had just started bragging (only to myself!) that I had completed the last three or four Saturday puzzles without help from BD’s hints, when along came today’s puzzle to put me in my place! (I actually needed nine of the hints – blush, blush! – and they gave me the checking letters to finish off the remaining clues which I had not done until then.)
    As many others also said, the answer to 1a was a new word to me. I had never heard of the man mentioned in 4d (and to make it just a bit harder, our local newspaper left out the last two words of that clue: “being unbalanced”).
    I thought that 12a was a very clever clue (I needed BD’s help with it) and 8d VERY obscure and difficult.

  27. Thanks BD for the PDF.I drove around for the hard copy, which I always buy on week days because I prefer to read the paper that way, and found the nearest newsagent has shut and the next nearest had sold out of Telegraphs but were stuck with lots of Gruniads. This isn’t really a Guardian area in my opinion.Anyway , all done now (thanks for hints) .
    Lots of good clues, but 10a is my favourite.

    1. PS I thought 10a had a good surface reading, but after reading BD’s definition of surface reading , I’m not sure I understand the term at all.

  28. Spent all day folornly checking the DT website and finally thought of looking here! Duh should have done that ages ago. Have now printed off my PDF – off to sit in front of Doctor Who with my crossword.

    1. Oh dear – now I’m not sure that I should say what I had decided to say – going to say it anyway . . .

  29. On a completely non-crossword topic – unusual for me – I don’t think so . . .
    I quite expect to be lynched, excommunicated or sent to the naughty corner for ever but would it be heresy to say that I’m SO sick of Doctor Who? http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-yawn.gif

    1. I was in Trafalgar Square when they filmed the tardis sequence there so I had to watch it. This is my only claim to fame though.

      P.S. Doctor Who is much more enjoyable when accompanied by the crossword.

    2. I agree – I was around in the sixties when William Hartnell was the first Doctor and thought it was rubbish at the time, with all the intervening years I haven’t changed my mind!!

      Sci Fi definitely doesn’t do anything for me!

    3. Well I am going to disagree. I remember, as a child, watching Dr Who from behind the sofa. Seeing, some 30-odd years later, my own son doing the same thing made me realise just how fond I am of this imperfect series.

      There is certainly something strange about an evil race in pursuit of world domination that would actually be thwarted by a flight of stairs, but there is genuine menace present for young children watching, that always seems to get the balance about right and never goes too far. And the introduction of Billy Piper meant that a generation of dads just “had” to sit with their children in case they got too scared…!

  30. After haunting the website regularly, waiting for our daily dose of solving, we were so pleased to see the link to the PDF. A big thank you to Phil and BD for making it available. We also found it tougher than usual, but fun.
    On the positive side, in desperation yesterday, we printed off the Paul from the Grauniad which we thought was great.
    Thanks Mr Ron and BD.

    1. Following recommendations here I gave Paul (Guardian) a go but TBH not on the same wavelength nor up to speed on Karl Marx sayings (if, indeed, that was what those clues were all about).

      1. It’s not KARL Marx, if that’s any help. We laughed out loud when we got it and it makes the puzzle fairly plain sailing after that. Cheers.

  31. Grrrr….Sunday morning 06.41 and still unable to get my daily fix. The morning coffee is not the same. Off to grump and kick something. Pity no walkers around going off the path otherwise I could have vented my spleen on them.

    Dozy IT

    1. Yes. Same for me…

      BD – Is Phil McNeil likely to make a PDF available for today’s (Sunday) puzzle? If so, when are we likely to see it?

      Having shelled out 30-something quid for a subscription, I’m blowed if I’m going to go out into the cold,cold day and slog all the way to the newsagents (a whole 2 minutes walk!) and hand over another 2 of my hard-earned pounds for a paper I don’t read…

  32. Interesting and enjoyable solve. Started yesterday evening after a lovely sunny day in Harrogate. At first look 1D was the only one I had and I wasn’t sure about that. Anyway managed to do half before I fell asleep. Like magic this morning the other half came to me apart from 16d. After going through the alphabet I got there eventually. Was not the NW corner for me. I think my answers were evenly spread. Some new words but workable out (excuse grammar). Hesitated over second word of 8d and solving 27a was slowed up as I had another young animal in mind for 23d. Happily I had not filled in until I got 18a. 14a was my favourite

  33. Well, here we are on Sunday morning and I still can’t get yesterday’s DT crosswords.
    I’m not sure what sort of idiots the DT employs in its IT section but they really must be scraping the barrel. As well as the current puzzle problem they spent weeks (literally) trying to sort out why I kept on having to sign in even though I had ticked the ‘remember me’ box.
    I pointed out that virtually every organisation I dealt with on-line managed to get it right except the Telegraph. Like talking to a brick wall.
    Perhaps the owners are getting short of a bob or two?

    1. If you look at the bottom of the hints, just before the star rating thingy and the comments you will find a pdf link to yesterday’s puzzles which should keep you going for a while.

    2. They must employ the same IT lot who set up the Obamacare website over here! You can bet the DT won’t be making any monetary adjustments for those of us who have to suscribe to get the crossword on line.

      I just printed out the latest Guardian cryptic to keep me going in the wee small hours as I listen to the wind whipping around outside.

    3. Following recommendations here I gave Paul (Guardian) a go but TBH not on the same wavelength nor up to speed on Karl Marx sayings (if, indeed, that was what those clues were all about).

      The ‘Remember Me’ is more likely to be a feature of your browser (I’m guessing Chrome). Safari remembers my password OK but Chrome seems to have its off days. It will go for weeks without me having to sign in again but just recently has started to sulk again.

  34. I think they must be running the crossword of a Sinclair ZX81 – although come to think of it mine never let me down and did exactly what it said on the box. I read somewhere the crossword “lives” on the Amazon server in Dublin, as Amazon works like clockwork how come this is such a screw up – and takes so long to fix. I got 3 months free use last time this happened – any chance of another 3?

    1. I am guessing that it is a lowcost hosting service that they run on and maybe Amazon IT upgraded something in the backend that has had a knock-on effect on the DT crossword. Having said that maybe it is another flood like last time. Hopefully the PDFs will be along soon and I can timeshift them by a day (so I get to do a DT crossword with the coffee)

  35. Didn’t get a chance to even look at this yesterday, eventually finished but not without the assistance of hints, these comments and BRB ( dictionary and thesaurus ), if this is tantamount to cheating, then guilty as charged :-)

    My thanks to BD as ever for the hints

    1. These are usually political & are of a satirical nature performed by Lefties – hope this one gets under BD’s radar!

      1. Many thanks Spindrift. If it doesn’t make it I’ll see you on the naughty step and I hope that CS has got some cake left

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