DT 27521 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27521

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27521

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty ****Enjoyment ****

Deep Threat is unavailable this morning so I’m making a temporary return to my old stamping ground. I really enjoyed Giovanni’s puzzle today but I thought it was above average in terms of difficulty so I’ve given it four stars. Do you agree or disagree?

You can reveal an actual answer by highlighting what’s concealed between the brackets under the relevant clue.

Across Clues

1a Sheet anchor (11)
{PAPERWEIGHT} – cryptic definition of something that you may have on your desk.

7a Austere type left out of a second eleven based in Glasgow (7)
{ASCETIC} – string together A (from the clue), S(econd) and a Glasgow-based football team and take away the L(eft). I was hoping not to have to mention football this morning as I know how sensitive some people are!

8a I arrive looking untidy in holiday area (7)
{RIVIERA} – an anagram (looking untidy) of I ARRIVE.

10a Time’s no good for holding in desire (8)
{YEARNING} – start with a period of time and add the abbreviation of N(o) G(ood) with IN contained inside it.

11a Sharpness shown by doctor — one deals with a lot of rubbish (6)
{DREDGE} – a word meaning sharpness or acerbity of manner is preceded by one of the abbreviations for doctor.

13a Chemical in area by northern river (4)
{UREA} – A(rea) follows a river in North Yorkshire.

14a Engineers, excellent fellows needing time for tweaking (10)
{REFINEMENT} – this is a charade of the abbreviation for army engineers, an adjective meaning excellent, another word for fellows and T(ime).

16a Loveless emperor with a penetrating urge — to ____ Rome! (10)
{INCINERATE} – I haven’t underlined anything in the clue because the answer is part of the overall description of the emperor’s inclination and in one way it’s already underlined. The name of a Roman Emperor (the one supposed to have started fires and fiddled) without the O (loveless) is followed by A (from the clue) and all that goes inside (penetrating) a verb to urge or provoke.

18a Odd bits of Sue’s mail in house (4)
{SEMI} – the odd letters of two words in the clue.

21a Slips of paper? (6)
{ERRATA} – cryptic definition of mistakes found in a published paper or other written work. This is a very clever clue because these mistakes are often corrected on a loose sheet of paper inside a book.

22a Snag having daughter untrained, needing support (8)
{DRAWBACK} – a charade of D(aughter), an adjective meaning untrained (often applied to new recruits) and a verb to support or endorse.

24a Move quickly in attempt to make pattern (7)
{TRACERY} – a verb to move quickly or rush goes inside an attempt.

25a Mythical beast — gosh! — inside a French home (7)
{UNICORN} – an exclamation of surprise (gosh!) is contained inside one of the variants of ‘a’ in French and an adverb meaning at home.

26a Awful screamer keeping on, originator of gloom? (11)
{SCAREMONGER} – an all-in-one clue. An anagram (awful) of SCREAMER contains ON (from the clue) and the original letter of G(loom).

Down Clues

1d Wolves needing time to get all essential elements brought together (7)
{PACKAGE} – a charade of the term for a group of wolves and a period of time.

2d Strong sign resistance will disappear (6)
{POTENT} – start with a sign or omen and take away the R(esistance).

3d People telling stories turn coarse when drunk (10)
{RACONTEURS} – an anagram (when drunk) of TURN COARSE.

4d Lord soon found to be deficient (4)
{EARL} – an adverb meaning soon (as in ‘How soon can you finish?’) without its last letter (found to be deficient).

5d With divine protection Jules ruled (8)
{GOVERNED} – the French author Jules is contained inside (with … protection) a divine being.

6d Whistle  that is nominally shared by two quarrelling brothers (7)
{TWEEDLE} – my first thought here was rhyming slang (whistle and flute = suit) but the first definition is a (new to me) verb meaning to pipe or whistle. The second is the common (shared) part of the names of two Nursery Rhyme characters.

Tweedledum and Tweedledee
Agreed to have a battle;
For Tweedledum said Tweedledee
Had spoiled his nice new rattle.

Just then flew down a monstrous crow,
As black as a tar-barrel;
Which frightened both the heroes so,

They quite forgot their quarrel.

7d Play  just right for any person in general (2,3,4,2)
{AS YOU LIKE IT} – double definition, the first a play by Shakespeare.

9d A bridge player, Richard, and two fellow players filled with astonishment (3-8)
{AWE-STRICKEN} – if you didn’t know already the four players round a bridge table are called after the four cardinal points of the compass, so string together A (from the clue), one of the players, a shortened form of Richard and two more bridge players, this time the abbreviations.

12d One winning nothing receiving embrace from French author (6,4)
{VICTOR HUGO} – we need to split ‘one winning nothing’ into ‘one winning’ (i.e. a winner) and the letter used to signify nothing or zero. Then we have to insert between them (receiving) an embrace or cuddle.

15d Curse those people in an organisation supposed to help motorists (8)
{ANATHEMA} – insert a pronoun used for ‘those people’ into AN (from the clue) and a motoring organisation. It sounds as though Mr Manley has had a bad experience with this organisation!

17d Body of animal under vehicle, cold (7)
{CARCASS} – a pack animal follows (under, in a down clue) a common vehicle and C(old).

19d Hair being swept up added to our charm (7)
{ENAMOUR} – reverse (being swept up) the hair of a horse or lion and add OUR.

20d Shelter gaping with its roof off (6)
{AWNING} – start with a present participle meaning gaping (applied to a chasm or mouth, say) and drop the first letter (with its roof off).

23d River — some deny that will rise (4)
{TYNE} – hidden (some) and reversed (will rise) in the clue.

My top clues today are 1a, 16a, 21a and 12d. How about you?

Today’s Quickie Pun: {MELON} + {COLIC} = {MELANCHOLIC}



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46 comments on “DT 27521

  1. A suitable struggle but very solvable. The grid helped by providing most of the start letters.

  2. Needed quite a bit of electronic help on the LHS but at least managed to fill in the grid (correctly). I always find Friday’s Giovanni offering tough and I agree with Gazza regarding it being a bit tougher than normal. It was, in my opinion, an enjoyable crossword so I’d rate it 3.5*/*** . Thanks to DM and thanks to Gazza for the hints which I enjoyed reading.

  3. I actually thought this was a fairly gentle solve tbh. I loved 16a , clue of the week for me. Thanks Gazza and Giovanni. Have a great weekend one and all.

  4. I agree that the helpful grid took a lot of the sting out of this one but several guessed answers needed a posteriori justification. 25a was easy to guess but surely the clue misleads over what is supposed to go where? Missed the odd letters indication on 18a for quite a while but the penny finally dropped to leave me 6d-ing happily! (and no I hadn’t heard of it before either).

    1. With 25a what you’re supposed to do is to join the UN and IN first to make UNIN and then insert the exclamation.

  5. Very logical crossword today, which suits me, -,** for the bottom half and **** for the top half ,so going for a ***. very enjoyable ,and my favourite of the week, so a **** for enjoyment, thanks Giovanni and Gazza for the pics. Favourites 9d and 16a-had me thinking for a while.

  6. Thoroughly enjoyable and not quite 4* for me.It’s hard to pick a favourite amoung a very fine assortment , but perhaps 12d. Thanks to the two Gs .

  7. I agree with you Gassa, I’m really struggling and I may have to resort to the hints which you have kindly provided

  8. Initially thought this was going to be impossible so can’t believe I actually completed it with only parsing help from Gazza – TVM. It turned out to be a thoroughly stimulating and entertaining solve – best of the week so far. Big thanks Giovanni. I agree ****/****.
    http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gifhttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

  9. Thank you Gazza for the explanation for 16 across. Enjoyed this one. Plodded on after an uneasy start in 3* time. Liked 1a and 5 d.

  10. Completed, eventually, without the hints and in spite of a dose of man-flu, but with some electronic support. *** for difficulty and enjoyment. In particular I liked 14, 16, & 25 a, as well as 9d.
    Thanks to Giovanni and Gazza.

  11. I absolutely agree that the top half had the 3-4 rating, specifically the NW. Thank you Gazza for your tips.
    As usual for Giovanni, you wondered Afterwards why you didn’t solve them sooner, but there we are. All very enjoyable, thank you, Maestro.

    Too many to pick one clue as favourite.

    Off to send slugs to boarding school (this is a euphemism)…..

  12. I agree with Angel, I thought that this was going to be impossible, but, after an enjoyable and protracted challenge, I managed to complete it. My rating is 3*+ for difficulty, 4* for enjoyment.

    24a & 6d were new words for me but nicely derivable from the parsing. There were many clever clues, and, like Gazza, I particularly enjoyed 16a, 21a & 9d.

    Many thanks to the two Gs.

  13. Very enjoyable puzzle from the Don, many thanks to both him and to Gazza for a super review.

  14. Tough but very enjoyable. Never finished a four star before.
    Some amazing clues such as 1a and 6d (my last in). Saw 7d at Stratford and going to Henry VI pt 2 next Friday, part 1 was excellent.
    Many Thx to the Don for a real workout and to Gazza but unbelievably I finished before the hints came up.

    1. I did P1 in the afternoon and PT2 in the evening a couple of Saturdays ago. What with fish & chips in between from Barnaby’s opposite, it was a great day. Enjoy

  15. Enjoyable Friday fare from Giovanni!

    Faves : 1a, 2a, 14a, 21a, 1d, 5d, 12d & 19d.

    Here in NL the blue sky has gone and now clouds and a few raindrops.

  16. This was a steady solve for me, with just a quick google needed to confirm the dictionary definition of 6D. Liked 1A just because I have upwards of 50 glass ones in my collection, but 16A was my favorite. Thanks to Giovanni and Gazza.

  17. We needed a lot of assistance with today’s offering, though I think it was a very fair crossword. Once we looked at the hints, we could understand all the clues, it’s just disappointing to need so much help. Thank you setter and Gazza.

  18. I’m so glad that gazza gave this one 4* for difficulty and that others found it tricky too – thought it might turn out to be another of those “just me then” days. Nearly 4* for enjoyment.
    This took me quite a lot longer than usual even for a Friday and I needed the hints to explain 7 and 16a.
    I’ve never heard of 6d meaning what it does here and it was my last answer.
    I also wondered if Mr Manley has less than good experience of the AA but as both Pet Lambs have ancient and unreliable cars (mine’s not much better) our family thinks that they’re brilliant – on first name terms with lots of them!
    I liked 18a and 3 and 12d. My favourite was 1a.
    With thanks to Giovanni for the crossword and to gazza for getting me out of trouble.

  19. Loved this and like some others first time to finish a **** puzzle although it helps when i can start at 4 pm PST. Thanks to the two Gs.

    1. Welcome to the blog Vancouverbc. Now that you’ve introduced yourself I hope that we’ll hear from you on a regular basis.

  20. 3* difficulty for me. 16A held me up because I was trying to think of some sort of quote.

    Otherwise, I think i’m having a good crossword day.

    4* enjoyment – thanks.

  21. . . . to change the subject a bit I don’t understand the Matt cartoon – could some kind soul explain it to me. I imagine it’s something to do with football, jus http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gift for a change!

    1. No, Kath, neither can I. Nor can Mr Catnap. Must be something to do with football — maybe that’s why we don’t get it!

    2. Not totally sure but it looks like, now that England are on the way home, husband and wife are scrubbing out the demarcation lines which kept them in their respective ‘zones’ during the World Cup.

    3. I’ve looked at the football for all of about 5 secs, but I gather they are using shaving foam to mark where free kicks are to be taken or something like that.Actually Gazza’s comment just popped up now so I am sure he is right !

      1. I’m sure he’s right too – he usually is. I didn’t think it was one of his best – Matt I mean, not gazza.

    4. Thanks to all for replying – not really any the wiser then but at least I’m not the only one. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

      1. In the football this year, the shaving foam spray is put down at free kicks to mark the line the defending players must not cross. She’ s therefore stopping him from getting to the fridge to refill his beer glass

  22. Thank you DG, difficult but got there in the end. Frustration as the paper didn’t arrive till after 1000 and then out for a long lunch. Very hard to get started but once under way life got easier ! Thanks Gazza for your review and hints. Not often I finish a four star !

  23. What a super Giovanni puzzle! There are many delightful clues. In particular, I liked 1a, 16a, 22a, 5d, 7d, 12d, 15d and 19d. Of these, fave must be 16a.

    I didn’t need Gazza’s excellent hints, but have greatly valued going through them now with my paper copy to hand. No problems with the across clues. Just one slip in the parsing of the downs. I had ‘nearly’ for ‘soon’ in 4d, which isn’t quite right. Otherwise all was well.

    Big thanks to Giovanni for a splendid Friday challenge, and to Gazza for a super review.

  24. Giovanni at his best! An absolute pleasure to solve. Would pick 16a as favourite but hard to choose among so many really good clues.
    Thanks Giovanni and Gazza.

  25. Tough but brilliant.
    Concentrated thought required.
    Really enjoyed it.
    Last in 11 and 16a, latter superb clue.
    Many thanks Giovanni and, luckily not needed, Gazza for the review.

  26. I’m new to Big Dave but glad I’ve found you. Helpful without spoiling the fun. Tell me: how do you guys know who the compiler is? I read somewhere that the Telegraph deliberately doesn’t name him/her for some reason.

  27. A splendid puzzle, very satisfying to complete unaided. I would go for 4*/4*, and pick 1a as my favourite. Many thanks to Giovanni, and to Gazza for review and hints.

  28. I am not normally a fan of Giovanni but today I was really bowled over by this offering. I’m going with 2Kiwis with 16a as a favourite, , if i listed all I would incur the wrath of Kath. Cheers to Mr Manley and Gazza as always.

  29. Oddly, I found this quite straightforward and not half as difficult as Thurday’s struggle. None the less enjoyable for that though. 2*/4* for me. Thanks to DG for brightening the end of a difficult week and to Gazza for his usual 5* review

  30. Thanks to the two G’s. A very enjoyable puzzle, I was left with six unsolved yesterday. Then whittled them down today until I got to 16a which defeated me. Favourite was 6d, which I had to look up in the BRB for confirmation. Was 3*/4* for me. Great puzzle.

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