DT 27392 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27392

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27392

Hints and tips by Gazza

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment ***

If you struggled with the Rufus yesterday you’ll probably find Mr Ron’s puzzle today a bit of a relief. It’s pretty straightforward and it’s a pangram. Do let us know how you fared and what you thought of it.

If you want to see an answer you’ll have to reveal what’s hidden between the brackets under the clue by highlighting it. If you’re accessing the blog on a mobile device there’s some advice on how to do this in the FAQ.

Across Clues

1a  Criticise expert when exposing universal remedies (8)
{PANACEAS} – an informal verb to criticise is followed by an expert and a synonym for when.

5a  Evil immoral sailor (6)
{SINBAD} – this fictional Arab sailor is a charade of an evil or wickedness and an adjective meaning immoral or nefarious.

9a  About to call one about uprising (9)
{REBELLION} – string together a) a preposition meaning about or concerning, b) an informal verb to call by phone, c) I (one in Roman numerals) and d) another preposition meaning about.

11a  Nut infiltrating Cape Canaveral (5)
{PECAN} – hidden in the clue.

12a  Guide that woman inside hydro (6)
{SHERPA} – insert a female pronoun in a hydro or a place where guests may ‘take the waters’.

13a  A quiet Italian river location may be suitable (8)
{APPOSITE} – we need to build the answer from A (in the clue), the musical abbreviation for quiet, an Italian river and a location.

15a  Hotels ignored comic opera (3,10)
{THE GONDOLIERS} – an anagram (comic) of HOTELS IGNORED.

18a  A few in their glee dancing a Scottish dance (9,4)
{EIGHTSOME REEL} – insert a word meaning a few or an unspecified number into an anagram (dancing) of THEIR GLEE.

22a  Man reportedly to assist in the making of this children’s soup (8)
{ALPHABET} – what sounds like (reportedly) an abbreviated male forename (that of TV’s Mr Garnett, for example) is followed by a verb to assist or encourage.

23a  Maintain board’s winning (4,2)
{KEEP UP} – a word for board (and lodging) is followed by an adverb meaning winning or ahead.

26a  Arrest knight overwhelmed by bankruptcy (3,2)
{RUN IN} – the letter used in chess notation for knight goes inside (overwhelmed by) another word for bankruptcy.

27a  Around end of game, playing squash, I’m nauseous (9)
{SQUEAMISH} – an anagram (playing) of SQUASH I’M containing the end letter of (gam)E.

28a  Only just save the Spanish close to bankruptcy (6)
{BARELY} – string together a preposition meaning save or ‘except for’, the Spanish definite article (masculine version) and the closing letter of (bankruptc)Y.

29a  Understood female in diamonds (8)
{FATHOMED} – start with F(emale) and add a phrase (2,4) meaning in and the abbreviation used in card games for diamonds.

Down Clues

1d  Take a seat during procession without duke, a hanger-on (8)
{PARASITE} – insert a verb meaning to take a seat into a procession from which the D(uke) has been removed.

2d  Magnificent  old gold coin (5)
{NOBLE} – double definition, the second being an old English gold coin worth approximately one third of a pound.

3d  Plays, relaxing in company, a song (7)
{CALYPSO} – an anagram (relaxing) of PLAYS goes inside the abbreviation for company.

4d  A number climbing in line to be turned round (4)
{AXIS} – A is followed by a single-digit number reversed (climbing, in a down clue).

6d  I’m to turn out, come along (7)
{IMPROVE} – you may see this use of ‘come along’ in a school report, for example, ‘Little Penelope’s spelling is coming along nicely’. I’M (from the clue) is followed by a verb to turn out or happen.

7d  Encourage children to get previous publication (4,5)
{BACK ISSUE} – a charade of a verb to encourage or support and a legal term for children.

8d  Daughter’s target: formal evening meal (6)
{DINNER} – D(aughter) is followed by what an archer may hope to hit (though it’s not quite the optimum result).

10d  Emperor‘s granny concealing Eastern European origins, originally (8)
{NAPOLEON} – an affectionate word for granny contains an East European and the original letter of O(rigins).

14d  Newspaper boss, English, wearing appalling strides (8)
{EDITRESS} – E(nglish) is contained inside (wearing) an anagram (appalling) of STRIDES.

16d  Watch the first man in for a surprise (3-6)
{EYE-OPENER} – a verb to watch is followed by the first batsman to face the bowling (first man in).

17d  Sloppy fielders keep dropping Leicestershire’s opener (8)
{SLIPSHOD} – the second cricket-related clue in a row. Close-in fielders are followed by a verb to keep or retain without the opening letter of L(eicestershire). Did you think it was a bit sloppy to have part of the answer to the previous clue in this one?

19d  Angler at sea, about last to drop anchor (7)
{GRAPNEL} – an anagram (at sea) of ANGLER containing the last letter of (dro)P.

20d  Rot shown in elm, primarily, and two other trees (7)
{EYEWASH} – the primary letter of E(lm) is followed by two other trees.

21d  New zebra crossing good? Capital (6)
{ZAGREB} – an anagram (new) of ZEBRA containing G(ood).

24d  Cut-glass object teacher put up in the course of the afternoon (5)
{PRISM} – reverse (put up, in a down clue) a male teacher inside the abbreviation for afternoon.

25d  Most of panel on a Hebridean island (4)
{JURA} – remove the final Y from a panel and follow this (on, in a down clue) with A.

My favourite clue today is one of 29a, 10d and 20d. How about you?

Today’s Quickie Pun: {MATTER} + {DOORS} = {MATADORS}

70 comments on “DT 27392

  1. Morning gazza, I did think this was going to be difficult when first looking at it, my last one in was 4d, I knew it had to have an ‘x’ in it as this was obviously a pangram!! 2* for me, 29a favourite clue, thanks for blog gazza :-)

  2. As ever, 80 pc of this one fell into place in quicktime, the rest took me a while – mainly the SW corner. Last was 25d. Liked 22a. Enjoyed this one which I think was a Pangram with a distinctly Caledonian slant. Thanks to the setter for the mental romp and for the hints, Gazza which were not required today and it’s rare I can say that. Agree with your rating… maybe 1.5* for difficulty. That pesky dog wants walking again.

  3. While this was quite straightforward for the most part, I found it a little harder than Gazza, did. I’d never heard of 18a, and the other three name clues (5a, 15a, 10d) are harder to solve if you don’t know the names. Really enjoyable, though, so 2* 3.5* for me. Thanks to Mr. Ron and Gazza.

  4. 3*/3* for this pangram today. I found it tricky in parts but very enjoyable.

    My last one in was 19a for which I needed to use an anagram solver in order to find what was a new word for me. I’d never heard of the Scottish dance in 18a but the answer was easily derived from the wordplay.

    As was the case yesterday I’ve got a short list of two from which to choose my favourite: 29a and 20d, and yet again I’m still deciding!

    Many thanks to Mr Ron and to Gazza.

  5. More **/*** territory for me but still a nice offering my favourite was 20D
    Many thanks to the setter & Gazza for an
    excellent review.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_wacko.gif

  6. Fairly straight forward fare today although I was held up for a while on 29A as I wanted to put HER or SHE in to something to do with diamonds. I thought 22A was very clever, but my fave rave on Dave today has to be 20D – very clever indeed.

  7. Was going for a */*** until I got held up in the SE corner ,so settle for a **/***.liked 29A and 22A -thanks Gazza for the most apposite Pic,thought the ‘turn out ‘ bit of 6D was a bit ‘iffy ‘ bit suppose it just about fits the clue, Still to spot a pangram , getting too late now . Is the Bristol convention just meant for Telegraph solvers ,where can I get further details?

    • I think that prove/turn out is ok, e.g. I believe my theory will prove to be correct.
      All are welcome at the Bristol do – details of exactly where will appear shortly.

  8. It was a tad more than 1* difficulty for me and nearer 4* for enjoyment.
    I even spotted the pangram and for about the first time ever that helped with my last two answers which I was stuck on. Even with alternate letters in I couldn’t see what 6d could be but finally realised that I was missing a V and got the answer immediately. Likewise with 29a – the only letter I hadn’t used by then was the F so then I got that one too having spent a long time trying to fit in ‘her’ or ‘she’ as skempie did.
    At the risk of sounding sexist I was fooled by the 14d ‘Newspaper boss’ being a woman so that took a while too even though I knew it was an anagram.
    I thought this was a nice puzzle with lots of good clues – I’m going to be hard pressed to pick just a few – 18 and 27a and 14d. My favourite was either 22a or 20d.
    With thanks to Mr Ron and gazza.
    Today’s little lesson is that it’s mistake to put your glasses on a chair when you get up to put more wood on the fire. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif

    • I too thought 14d was probably not PC in the same way as there are no actresses any more. Is 22a really a type of soup – looks ghastly! 19d was new to me. Overall pleasant enough but probably ***/**. Thanks Mr. Ron for puzzle and Gazza for being there in case of need. Sorry about specs Kath – trod on mine in the garden recently – good old Specsavers put them right for me.

      • The lady setter Arachne has used 14d as a solution in several of her puzzles in the Graun recently.

      • There used to be something called “alphabetti spaghetti” – our girls used to have it a school sometimes – they liked it, mainly because it wasn’t the kind of thing they ever had at home – novelty value!
        As for the specs I have no-one to blame but myself specially since I do that kind of thing with them all the time, usually in the garden, so should have learnt by now.

  9. **/***for me today, a bit tricky in places but perseverance got me there in the end. Thanks to setter and to Gazza for the review.

  10. I learnt to spell with Alphabetti Spaghetti. I learnt The Binary System by mixing tins of regular Spaghetti with tins of Spaghetti Hoops. There are special tins of alphabetti Spaghetti for Chavs that only contain the letters ASBO. I could go on put I am sure you would not want me to do so. Thanks to awakening earlier, not having a head befuddled by the previous days alcoholic intake and not having to be mindful of Big Daves wishes to publish by 11.00am I got through this puzzle in reasonable time with no hold ups. Too many really nice clues to mention but 29ac was very good and 20d has always been a favourite. Crib tonight. If my team win we could be equal first in the league. Ta to all as usual.

  11. I would rate this a little more difficult than yesterday’s Rufus, although I was only left with 29a at lights out last night. The penny finally dropped with the information that this was a pangram and ‘F’ was the missing letter. Having got J, X, Y, and Z, I should have thought about pangram – oh well. I solved 16d easily but couldn’t understand why, I was thinking more of Adam than a cricket connection – oh well again. Thanks to Mr Ron and Gaza.

  12. A bit more straightforward today we think, & very enjoyable. I’m surprised anyone calls themselves a 14 down. Even female actresses like to be called actors now for some reason. I’ve never heard of the anchor, but the better half was in the sea scouts at one time & so knew the answer. Thank you, setter & Gazza.

    • Yes, 14d – PC or not PC. It is worth noting that BAFTA and The Oscars both still have awards for actors and actresses. We might get the mess sorted out one day.

      • Makes me wonder how much of an outcry there would be if the BAFTAs and Oscars etc banned the use of generic terms and only had one single award for best actor and one for best supporting actor – I’m sure there would be tears.
        For many years now we have been bombarded with Equality this and Equality that to the extent that the ‘fairer sex’ (if you don’t mind me using the term) are now routinely in action on the front line of military conflicts (not something I really agree with) and just yesterday I was sent an e-petition from and American woman with the story of an American female who had been shot in Afghanistan with the headline ‘We the undersigned call on military forces not to recruit females for the services’ – all seems a waste of time to me.
        I still don’t believe that the ladies should earn the same money at Wimbledon though (they can only play 3/5 of the amount of tennis as the fellas).

        • I agree Skempie, what’s more patting a ball over a net whilst grunting can hardly be called tennis.

          • Come on it’s hardly “patting” viz Williams Sisters, etc. but I agree it should be 5 sets if they want the same prize money. In fact the red-blooded ones do their fair share of grunting too these days – gamesmanship? http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_rolleyes.gif

  13. Thank you setter – a lot easier than yesterday’s I thought. Thanks Gazza for your review and hints – I must confess to needing your explanation of 22a.

  14. If anyone is dithering about whether or not to brave the Toughie I’ve done it – if I can so can everyone. I bet BD gives it 1* for difficulty which will shatter any illusions that I might have about getting better at them. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif

    • If you’ve run out of things to do, Kath, Brendan (Virgilius) in the Guardian has a nice puzzle with a theme that you’re bound to enjoy (though it might make you cry!).

      • You’re being a bad influence – will definitely have to have a look at that one now – just when I was trying to fool myself that I was about to go and do useful stuff.
        Lots of things make me cry – which one is this – actually I can probably guess! In advance, because it would be shame not to live up to expectations . . . http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cry.gif

          • How ever did you guess? I’ve had a very quick look and am now about to get going on it properly. I’ve already done the back page and the Toughie today – not sure that I’ve ever done three crosswords in one day – it’s OK in January but will all have to stop when we get round to gardening time of year again.

    • YOU FINISHED THAT, I take my hat off to you, you really are one of the experts now. I managed 5 clues and I am unsure about one of them.
      Don’t think I will ever reach your dizzy heights Kath. Well done.

      • Thank you very much but I think I just happened to be lucky today – I’m certainly not an expert and I don’t think I ever will be.

  15. Agree with Gazza’s */*** rating for this one. We got all but 3 of the acrosses and then all of the downs on first pass. Didn’t take long!

    A pleasant enough diversion though and for once I noticed that it’s a pangram, probably because the J and the Z are both near the end of the down clues.

    Thanks to Mr Ron and Gazza.

  16. How ironic, we could now get 4d, blind spot I guess. Thanks for the explanation re 29 which we got but did not know why.

  17. Way more difficult than * for me esp the bottom right corner. Some v difficult clues I thought in 20d and 25d and last in was 29a which I really really disliked!
    The top half, however, was very good I thought but overall def a 2.5for difficulty. Overall much preferred yesterday’s puzzle although the absence of all religious refs was much appreciated (shame about the opera but one can’t have everything!).
    Thx to all concerned.
    PS loved the cricketing clues, shame it’s a game we seem to have forgotten how to play!

  18. Had much more fun with this one, although still not able to see a pangram when it’s staring me in the face…. 20d and 29a made me laugh. Have not come across an editress before so took a while to sort that. I thought that editor, like actor, these days represented both genders? Thanks to setter and to Gazza too.

  19. Pleasant romp this one. Got into the swing of it very quickly and would rate it 2*/3* Thanks to Gazza for his excellent blog. Tonight is the night, I am going to attempt my first Toughie!

  20. I found this to be a quick romp, wavelength again. The only one that really gave a problem and last one in was 25d. Why do I always forget that one, seems it comes up often enough it should be burned on my brain now. Very enjoyable, thanks setter and Gazza for review.

    Change of subject: Why does my name and email information keep disappearing every day? It started doing that about a week ago and niggles me no end.

  21. Thanks to the setter and to Gazza for the review and hints. A very enjoyable puzzle after yesterday’s beast. Was two answers short, got 4d when I read it was a pangram ( I never notice them) and needed the hint for 29a, was trying to fit she in the middle of the checkers, no wonder I couldn’t solve it. Favourites were 5&22a and 20d. Was 2*/3* for me. Weather was superb in Central London this morning, went for a run. Reffereing Squash matches tonight.

  22. I needed hints for the south west corner (20d and 29a).I think I would have got there in the end, but I grew impatient. Thanks to the setter and Gazza.

  23. Spotted the pangram in time to be of some use. By a strange coincidence, Carol, who is currently reading “Two Girls, One on Each Knee”, had made the comment that we had not seen the river Po in a crossword recently. An hour later, there it was!
    Not too taxing, all good fun.
    Thanks Mr Ron and Gazza.

    • The river was also used in yesterday’s FT by Neo:

      “in time Italian banker fleeced bank at highest level” – A?O?E?N

  24. A bit of a breeze after yesterday’s struggle but I needed the hint to explain why I had written grapnel, although I know what one is. Just couldn’t see where the P came from. I kept wanting to put a T in there (as the last of ‘about’). So thanks for that Gazza and thanks to Mr Ron for easing my passage from work to bed.

    • I am often guilty of the same practice but keep being told it’s not the most soporific of pastimes to follow prior to, or after, turning in! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-yawn.gif

  25. I enjoyed this. I found some clues tricky, and was very slow to pick up on the wavelength of others.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_scratch.gif I needed the explanation for the ‘hod’ at the end of 17d. I also didn’t know what the final ‘d’ in 29a represented. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif My fave was 10d.
    Thanks to Mr Ron for an interesting puzzle. Thanks to Gazza for very clear and thoughtful explanations.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gifhttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif

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