DT 27461 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

DT 27461

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27461

Hints and tips by Deep Threat

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Good morning from South Staffs on a brightish Spring morning.

The usual sprinkling of lesser-known words this morning from Giovanni, but nothing from Scripture. Comfortably ** difficulty for me.

In the hints below, the definitions are underlined. References to ‘the usual’ are to the Usual Suspects page.

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           Ancient spoils put back in compartment in state of abeyance (4,7)
{ COLD STORAGE } A word for ancient followed by the reversal of a verb meaning spoils, all inside a secure compartment.

8a           Country workers — courageous folk on field wearing gloves? (11)
{ GAMEKEEPERS } A slightly old-fashioned word for courageous or plucky, followed by the members of football teams who wear gloves because they are allowed to handle the ball.

11a         Eddy left trailing behind dog (4)
{ CURL } A disparaging word for a dog followed by Left.

12a         Water course burst finally on to meadow (4)
{ LEAT } The final letter of burst tacked on to a meadow. The watercourse concerned brings water to a mill wheel.

13a         A social event collects very little money up front (7)
{ ADVANCE } A (from the clue) and a social event with an abbreviation for very (little) inside it.

15a         Coarse stuff made with alcoholic drink and butter (7)
{ GROGRAM } A mixture of rum and water followed by an animal which may butt you. Apparently, the admiral who first ordered the dilution of the sailors’ rum wore a cloak made of the material, and his nickname referring to it became attached to the drink.

16a         Instrument of torture, nothing audible (5)
{ KNOUT } Sounds like (audible) a Northern word for nothing.

17a         A sort of ending? Bring back a medical practitioner (4)
{ CODA } A passage rounding off a piece of music or a story is made up from A (from the clue) and a familiar abbreviation for a medic, all reversed.

18a         Notice bits being nibbled from sides of the ear (4)
{ OTIC } Remove the first and last letters of nOTICe.

19a         One having no pounds to burn (5)
{ SINGE } Remove the L (no pounds) from a word meaning one or solitary.

21a         Takes in various gents — is offering accommodation (7)
{ INGESTS } Anagram (various) of GENTS placed inside (offering accommodation) IS (from the clue).

22a         Country with a form of technology brought by engineers in time (7)
{ ERITREA } The sort of technology that enables you to read this blog and one of the usual engineers, both placed inside a period of time.

23a         Former England cricket captain losing wicket, energetic type (4)
{ GOER } Remove the Wicket from the name of a famously laid-back England cricket captain.

26a         Reluctant to ignore learner’s solemn appeal (4)
{ OATH } Leave out the initial L (ignore learner) from a word meaning reluctant to get an appeal to a higher power to witness a promise.

27a         New paler glue serves as substitute (11)
{ REPLACEMENT } Anagram (new) of PALER followed by a form of adhesive.

28a         Awful dusty mess on electronic equipment? (5,6)
{ SOUND SYSTEM } Anagram (awful) of DUSTY MESS ON.


2d           Something maybe in ring, with love offered to mate (4)
{ OPAL } A gemstone made up of the letter which looks like a love score at tennis and a friend or mate.

3d           Tree disease Richard spotted around Lincoln, going north (7)
{ DIEBACK } A diminutive form of Richard wrapped around the reversal (going north, in a Down clue) of a short form of President Lincoln’s first name.

4d           Old rocker — one to be locked up, restrained (4)
{ TIED } The Roman numeral for one inside a Fifties rocker.

5d           Sympathy established in chat over drink (7)
{ RAPPORT } A modern informal word for chat followed by a fortified wine.

6d           Female to dress up – lad taking no notice! (4)
{ GIRL } Rverse (up) a word for to dress or to set up, and add L(ad) with the public notice removed.

7d           Pub snack — sounds unpleasant? (11)
{ SCRATCHINGS } A crispy pork snack could also be the actions of DJs in manipulating vinyl records to produce a repeated (and unpleasant in Giovanni’s opinion – and mine) beat.

8d           Sad Aussie who may work in the churchyard? (5-6)
{ GRAVE-DIGGER } Put together synonyms of sad and Aussie to get someone who works in the burial process.

9d           People in administration uncommunicative, with air getting tense (11)
{ SECRETARIAT } Put together a word for uncommunicative or hidden, an operatic air, and Tense.

10d         The chocs a ma chewed — possible cause of this? (7,4)
{ STOMACH ACHE } Anagram (chewed) of THE CHOCS A MA.

14d         Irish town producing top female athlete (as she was) (5)
{ ENNIS } Double definition: a town in County Clare; or the maiden name of one of our gold medal winners from the 2012 Olympics.

15d         Mucky stuff in weapon little good — remove ultimately (5)
{ GUNGE } A weapon followed by Good and the last letter of remove.

19d         Bread snatched around end of meal (7)
{ STOLLEN } A sweet German bread is made up of a word for snatched wrapped around the last letter of meaL.

20d         Times to ponder cut short for old scholar (7)
{ ERASMUS } Times or periods followed by a word for ponder with the final E removed (cut short)

24d         Raw duck? Cook again (4)
{ REDO } The colour of raw meat followed by a duck at cricket.

25d         Ones put in place subsequently (4)
{ ACES } Hidden (put in) in the clue.

26d         Nob may get bowled out at any time (4)
{ ONCE } Another informal word for nob or head, with the initial B removed (bowled out, where B is the abbreviation for bowled on a cricket scorecard).

The Quick Crossword pun { TELLIES }{ HAVE }{ ALICE } = { TELLY SAVALAS }

44 comments on “DT 27461

  1. Solving worked out OK but I’d never heard of the 15″ fabric or them instrument of torture, which sounds horrendous.
    I liked 7 and 23.
    Lovely day here but lurgy prevents me from getting out and enjoying it……http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_negative.gif

  2. This one took a bit of working out with some good anagrams and some new (and some forgotten) words as is normal from The Don. 1A took an age and was only solved with a D’Oh moment, from this I managed to finish with 4D. 15A was a new word for me, but had to be correct (confirmed with Goggle) as GIN didn’t fit. I think that 8A probably just snuck in as my favourite today as I couldn’t help but wonder if Bran has heard of the second word.

    Off for a cream tea this afternoon (well, without the tea I’m afraid, might be having a nice drop of apple juice instead)(fermented of course) and looking forward to the proper start of the cricket season on Sunday. Talking of cricket makes me wonder if I should change my favourite to 23A.

  3. 2.5*/1* I found this dreary and rather a slog, with a peppering of obscurities. Not to my taste at all, I’m sorry to say.

    Even though I worked out the answers, 12a, 15a, 16a & 3d were new words for me.

    Thanks to setter and to DT.

    1. That’s a question I asked myself when writing the hints. It mainly, I think, is there for the sake of the surface reading. But it also points to the fact that the answer is to be found in ‘various gents is’.

    2. Mary, the answer is an anagram of GENTS placed inside IS, which I agree is also an anagram of GENTS IS, but the “offering accomodation” option is better for the surface reading.

  4. Hello all…a few obscure words today and not the easiest of crosswords for me at least a three star, thanks for hints DT needed a few to finish! Time off requested again Kath …off in van til Wednesday :-)

    1. Request for time off granted – just give the tractor drivers a bit of a break this time!
      I hope you have a lovely time and get some good weather – where are you going?

  5. Excellent but def for me a three star for difficulty with not one, not two but three new words in 12a, 15a and 16a!
    Thx to the a Don for restoring my confidence after yesterday’s nightmare. Thx to DT for the explanations for 25d (never see them if they are on two lines!) and 26d.

  6. Settled for a ***/*** as ,like others,a couple of words were new to me 15&16a.Apart from writing in support for 5d,without thinking too much , and making 1a a tad difficult till I saw the light , thought it was a ‘logical’ crossword . Thanks to DT and Mr G.

    1. I also wrote in support for 5d without thinking, but, unfortunately, I didn’t see the error of my ways and failed with 1a.

  7. I finshed without hints, but have to say I did not enjoy this at all. I thought the clue for 10D was pretty desperate.

  8. Thanks DG, took me a while to get going, but once under way, no problems. Fortunately I chat to friends regularly about otic knouts and grogramic leats. Thanks DT for your review and hints. I did think of “buckram” to start with for 15a and “Lewis” (Denise) for 14d, but saw the error of my ways quite quickly.

  9. I did it , I think , eventually but it was a struggle and I had to get help from searching on line . Did not enjoy but will now look at other comments and hints to see if it was me or others fared the same .

  10. Thanks for the hints.

    Re 7D, I’m pretty sure Giovanni is referring to fingernails down blackboards rather than condemning decades of music : )

    1. Actually, I think Giovanni has a bit of taste and the ‘music’ was exactly what he was talking about

  11. I found this terribly difficult – 4* and 2* for enjoyment. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-phew.gif
    Like others I didn’t know 12, 15 or 16a – didn’t know that ‘rap’ meant ‘chat’ (5d) – didn’t know that some footballers wore gloves (8a) and can never think of cricketers (23a) although, having finally got the answer, I have heard of him.
    “Oh dear” pretty much sums up my effort today.
    Having said all that I did like 28a and 7 and 15d. Loved 7d – my favourite.
    With thanks to Giovanni and Deep Threat for the much needed hints.

  12. Apart from a few write- ins and obvious anagrams I toiled my way through this.Thanks to Giovanni and DT.

  13. Thanks to Giovanni for a very enjoyable crossword and to DT for a highly amusing review.

  14. Struggled and took a while to get going but managed to finish it without hints except for 1a which I still have not got in spite of DT’s most welcome help. Liked 16a – remembered the word from Michel Strogoff, a story by Jules Verne set in Russia which I read a long time ago in French. Definitely a …/.. for me. Now It is today’s Toughie’s turn to be attacked and hopefully conquered, wish me luck!

  15. Like some others we found this hard ***/** at least. We managed about three quarters of it, and then had to resort to the hints to finish. I have heard of 15 across, but not of 16 across, though there is a word ‘grosgrain’ which is a heavy silk material much used by ladies in novels from a bygone age. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

  16. My first time blogging though I’m a long-term solver. I regret to say that I found this to be a very tired crossword. Like something devised by a robot. Sorry, setter

  17. Thanks to Giovanni and to Deep Threat for the review and hints. I really enjoyed this one, but I found it very tricky. Had never heard of 15&16a & 14d, but managed to solve them from the wordplay. Had heard of 12a, but only from watching the Time Team. Favourite was 26d. Was 3*/4* for me. Sun in and out in Central London. On to the Toughie.

  18. I found this hard, *** difficulty for me. I didn’t help myself by getting 5d wrong with support and missed 1a completely. I knew 15a, but not 12a, 16a or 3d, easy enough to work out and google though. I liked 20d and 22a, favourite 8a. Thanks to Giovanni and to DT for review and solving 1a for me.

  19. I am the only person who absolutely HATES Giovanni…. If they would credit the setters, they I would know NOT to buy the paper when he’s on duty !!

  20. In my short solving career, I have come to expect to be rather demoralized and almost intimidated by Friday. It’s the “Friday Feeling” but not with regards to TGI etc. Still, not too bad today – managed about half of it before resorting to a couple of hints and a bit of electronic help before I sorted the rest out.

    Slowly improving, looking forward to the weekend puzzles, Rufus and Tuesday’s Mr Ron. Keep telling myself I’ve improved a lot and to enjoy it http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

    1. Enjoying doing crosswords is the most important thing, in my opinion anyway. I couldn’t give a monkey’s about how long they take me – I never time myself anyway. I also find Fridays tricky and, quite often, Mondays too. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

  21. Certainly not a ‘write-in’ for us, We actually knew all the odd words too except for 12a which needed a quick check to confirm. Enjoyed it.
    Thanks Giovanni and DT.

  22. Pleased to see I’m not alone . I managed three quarters of it but needed help with the rest. Didn’t really like it very much .

  23. I enjoyed this one, as l usually do with Giovanni’s puzzles, and would score it 2*/4*. My favourite was 9d, but only because I’m a sucker for a good horse, and Big Red was certainly that. Thanks to Giovanni, and to DT for the review.

  24. New words, or possibly forgotten held me up. Also, If I had not entered the answer to 8d where 7d should have gone the left hand side would have been easier. Only 8 double unches. Thanks Giovanni and DT

    1. In mitigation, all the double unches have two contiguous checking letters either before or after them that does tend to lessen the blow. We had not even noticed them. Cheers.

  25. Ho hum. Mangled to get 2d wrong. Had oval instead, which fitted the ring theme, probably more obviously than the correct answer does, but not the rest. Mind you, I’m used to answers only seeming to be half right until I see the hints! D’oh! Favourite was 28a. The Don must have seen mine, which could use some cleaning! Thanks for the hints.

  26. Wow what a slog and not much light relief. Can’t believe I did actually finish it but needed quite a bit of help. Buckram, grosgrain and gingham all came to mind for 15a but not the right answer. Thanks setter (I think!) and DT. ****/**. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-phew.gif

  27. We got a bit thrown by 16ac, which could just as easily have been SNOUT (also an instrument of torture), but sorted it with the help of goggle after realising 3d was DIEBACK. Not overly difficult a challenge for a Friday puzzle. Agree with DT’s rating. Thanks to DT and setter.

  28. Actually enjoyed this. Thanks Giovanni. Managed without the hints and comments although had to check one or two words in the BRB. Interesting because at first glance there was nothing I could do and I thought the clues convoluted. Poor Opal was looking rather lonely for a time. When they started coming they were thick and fast. Held up at the bottom for a time largely due to thinking that a Nob was a Toff. Once I had sorted that out I was there. I have had a good week largely due to catching the train for three days which I find good for concentration. Will look forward to today’s prize puzzle later. I wonder if it is a Cephas?

  29. Did this a day late due to entertaining visitors yesterday evening.
    It’s been a while since a puzzle contained four new words for me. Perfectly solvable nevertheless, which is the sign of a good puzzle in my opinion, and just requires confirmation that the solution is in fact a word I didn’t know! I enjoyed the challenge.
    Thanks to the Don and DT.

Comments are closed.