DT 27438 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27438

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27438

A full review by crypticsue

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

This puzzle was published on Saturday 15th March 2014

The  Saturday Mysteron* in double definition mode this week, but with a couple of lovely &Lits too.

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           Indicator of wind‘s   blow (4)
SOCK –  Although BD’s hint explained that this was a cryptic definition of a windsock used to show wind direction, I am going to stick with my first thought and say that this can also be read as a double definition, as sock can also mean a violent blow with the fist, not least because our Mysteron appears to be in double definition mode today.

3a           Model      problem (5)
POSER –   See what I mean?  Here’s another one which is  fairly self-explanatory.

6a           Cut down    garden weed (4)
DOCK –   And another!   Cut down or reduce;  or the large-leaved plant so handy when we’ve been stung by a nettle.

8a           Protector of wildlife cites innovators in development (15)
CONSERVATIONIST –   An anagram (in development) of CITES INNOVATORS.

9a           Acknowledge version of the Bible with cry of pain (6)
AVOUCH –   The abbreviation for the Authorised Version of the Bible followed by OUCH (cry of pain).

10a         Presenter of TV show with unusual format introducing new name (8)
FRONTMAN –   An anagram (unusual) of FORMAT with N (new) and N (name) added to the letters we had to rearrange.

11a         Observe large ship’s make-up (8)
EYELINER –   EYE (watch) LINER (large ship)

13a         Deception taking in engineers is very funny thing (6)
SCREAM –   The RE (Royal Engineers) inserted into a SCAM (deception).

15a         Group of actors in rep out for a change (6)
TROUPE –  An anagram (for a change) of REP OUT.

17a         One put on guard supports family (8)
BEARSKIN –  BEARS (supports) KIN (family).

19a         Boy catching gnat gets bit (8)
SMIDGEON –   A MIDGE (gnat) is caught by or inserted into SON (boy).

21a         Make sudden move forward pinching old saloon (6)
LOUNGE –    An expensive and more luxurious room in a public bar (saloon)   –  Insert O (old) into LUNGE (make sudden move forward).

22a         Eden Hazard? Golden feet work deftly with energy (4,2,9)
TREE OF KNOWLEDGE –   An anagram (deftly) of GOLDEN FEET WORK and E (energy).

23a         Place serving officers Horlicks (4)
MESS –  A place  serving officers in the armed forces, perhaps with   a well-known  bedtime beverage –   Horlicks is also a slang term for a complete mess.

24a         North American animal shed is unpleasant (5)
NASTY – NA (North American) and STY (animal shed).

25a         Blue stuff upset stomachs (4)
SMUT –   A reversal (upset)of TUMS (stomachs).


1d           Host a former athlete dispatched outside (9)
SACRAMENT –   The wafer consecrated in the Eucharist service.   Insert into SENT (dispatched) A (from the clue) and CRAM (Steve Cram, the former athlete turned sports commentator).

2d           Provide comfort to computer games player (7)
CONSOLE –   Another double definition – a verb meaning to provide comfort or a device for playing computer games.

3d           Fish expert catches indefinite number possibly (9)
PERCHANCE –   PERCH (fish) and ACE (expert) the latter having an N (indefinite number) inserted.

4d           Regular correspondent‘s report of Scottish island (7)
STAFFER  – A member of the editorial staff of a newspaper is a homophone (report of ) the Scottish island of Staffa.

5d           One protected by terrible horn (5)
RHINO –    Nice &Lit.   Insert I (one) into an anagram (terrible) of HORN.

6d           Changes the character of area in false set (9)
DENATURES –  Insert A (area) into DENTURES (set of false teeth).

7d           It will make you go about carrying a sign of injury (7)
CASCARA –   Something that will make you ‘go’ can be obtained either from the chemist or  by   inserting  A SCAR (a sign of injury) into CA (circa, about).

12d         Los Angeles strip is cleaner (9)
LAUNDRESS –   LA (Los Angeles) UNDRESS (strip).

13d         Secretive about worship, in a way that lacks depth (9)
SHALLOWLY –   Insert HALLOW (worship) into SLY (secretive).

14d         Name item in pie around Christmas primarily (9)
MINCEMEAT  –   Another nice &Lit.   Pie  is a printing term for type that has been mixed up – here it is an anagram indicator –  rearrange NAME ITEM  and C (the ‘primary’ letter of Christmas) .

16d         Regret about detective (7)
REMORSE –   RE (about) MORSE (the TV/crime novel detective)

17d         Fruit and nuts (7)
BANANAS –   well, there had to be one chestnut –   I sincerely hope that no-one requires an explanation of this clue!

18d         Supreme power to make monk dig furiously (7)
KINGDOM –   An anagram (furiously) of MONK DIG.

20d         Michael Finnegan’s content being small (5)
ELFIN –   Hidden in the content of MichaEL FINnegan.


*This puzzle  didn’t seem to me to feel like the work of  one of the usual Saturday Mysterons (they’ve been alternating with Cephas since October 2010).  Like me, commenters on the day certainly seemed to enjoy the solve, whoever set it.

1 comment on “DT 27438

  1. I didn’t get to do this until later in the week. It was a lovely puzzle, and I agree with **** for enjoyment. I marked eight clues I really enjoyed — 17a, 19a, 22a, 25a, 1d, 5d, 7d, and 12d. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

    For someone who regularly misses double definitions, this time I had them all!http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_biggrin.gif I also read 1a as being one of them, my reasoning being the same as yours, Crypticsue. I also thought 23a was a double definition…http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_wacko.gif I marked 14d as an &Lit but I wasn’t sure about it. Otherwise, I needed no hints and all my parsing was correct.

    Appreciation to the setter for a most enjoyable crossword, and to Crypticsue for this excellent review.

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