DT 27537 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27537

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27537

Hints and tips by scchua

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment ***

A 1-1.5* difficulty/3* enjoyment for me. Thanks to Jay.

P.S. If you still find the mechanics of the hints a mystery, you should read the following, which should help in understanding.

Definitions are underlined in the clues (in blue).

Words in blue are lifted from the clues.

Italicised words are instructions for constructing the answer. Parentheses following these enclose the indicators from the clues. Eg. Reversal of(up, in a down clue).

[xxx;yyy] denotes that a synonym for xxx or yyy is required.

{} are used to give the order of construction. Eg. Reversal of(up, in a down clue) AB + C is different from Reversal of(up, in a down clue) {AB + C}.

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    Stays if worried about performer meeting requirements (12)

{SATISFACTORY} : Anagram of(… worried) STAYS IF containing(about) [a performer on stage or in the movies].

9a    Continuing drama, like this artist pursuing a religious leader (4,5)

{SOAP OPERA} : [like this;in this same manner] + { [post-nominal letters for any artist who is a member of the Royal Academy of Arts] placed after(pursuing) < A + [the religious leader domiciled in the Vatican] > }.

10a    Music written for twenty? (5)

{SCORE} : Double defn.

11a    Traces of European Commission houses without us (6)

{ECHOES} : [abbrev. for the European Commission] + “houses minus(without) “us “.

Answer:  From the mythological nymph, smitten with unrequited love for Narcissus – the cad!

12a    Some compromise, as on a limit at a particular time of the year (8)

{SEASONAL} : Hidden in(Some) “compromise, as on a limit“.

13a    A particularly intimidating woman doctor gets pain reduced (6)

{DRAGON} : [abbrev. for the title of “doctor”] plus(gets) [extreme pain] minus its last letter(… reduced).

She’s not the one that’s particularly intimidating, but this next one definitely is:


15a    Runs into president after broadcast to improve image (8)

{AIRBRUSH} : { [abbrev. for “runs” in cricket scores] contained in(into) [former American president – Sr. or Jr., take your pick] } placed after(after) [to broadcast from a radio or TV station].

The technology has somewhat improved, now with Photoshop:

18a    Story told to support cause of delay on the road (8)

{TAILBACK} : Homophone of(… told) [a story;a narrative] plus(to) [to support a cause, or maybe a proposal].

19a    Songbird flying over lake – quail? (6)

{FLINCH} : [any of a family of songbirds, having a short conical bill] containing(flying over) [abbrev. for “lake”].

Defn: Not a bird, but an action associated with fear.

21a    Area for discussion of poor match played with no pressure (4,4)

Defn: … in cyberspace.

{CHAT ROOM} : Anagram of(… played) “poor matchminus(with no) [abbrev. for “pressure”, in physics].

23a    Put down all outsiders in dispute – more aggression (6)

{DEMEAN} : The respective 1st and last letters of(all outsiders in) “dispute – more aggression “.

26a    Finish after getting half of them correct (5)

{EMEND} : [the finish] placed after(after getting) 2 out of the 4 letters of(half of) “them “.

Defn: As a verb.

27a    Run test in new substances that provide food (9)

{NUTRIENTS} : Anagram of(… new) RUN TEST IN.

28a    Pathetic story – it’s a comparatively inferior thing (4,8)

{POOR RELATION} : [pathetic;uninteresting or inadequate] + [a story;an accounting of events].


1d    Hang revolutionary American outlay! (7)

{SUSPEND} : Reversal of(revolutionary) [abbrev. of things American] + [an outlay, especially of money].

2d    Temperature and skin infection? Rubbish! (5)

{TRASH} : [abbrev. for “temperature” in physics] plus(and) [a skin infection, characterised by red eruptions].

3d    One goes off and hides large sum of money needed to support London? (5,4)

{SMOKE BOMB} : [slang for a large sum of money received or paid out] placed below(needed to support, in a down clue) [with a capital letter, and preceded by “the (Big)”, slang for a big city like London, presumably from the pollution from such areas].

4d    Jump on ice and cut line (4)

{AXEL} : [to cut;to chop off] + [abbrev. for “line”].

Answer:  Manoeuvres like it have their own dangers:

5d    Recognised artist holding up exchanges in commerce (6,2)

{TRADES IN} : Hidden in(holding) reversal of(up, in a down clue) “Recognised artist “.

Defn: As a verb.

6d    Sprays of flowers (5)

{ROSES} : Double defn: 1st: A tool to cause a spray.

7d    Quickly drink and go – there’s a recession! (8)

{DOWNTURN} : [to quickly drink, say, in one gulp] plus(and) [a go;an attempt, say, taken by boardgame players in rotation].

8d    Breaking the law may provide an abundance of material possessions (6)

{WEALTH} : Anagram of(Breaking) THE LAW.

14d    Lively article made it absurd (8)

{ANIMATED} : Anagram of(… absurd) { [an article in grammar] + MADE IT }.

16d    Dance with the Queen at home – a pirouetting star! (9)

{BALLERINA} : [a dance;a social occasion involving dancing, and sometimes leaving your glass slipper behind] plus(with) [abbrev. from Latin for the current Queen of England] + [at home] + A.

17d    Glass preferably found outside church (8)

{SCHOONER} : [preferably;rather, as in “I’d rather die than date him”] containing(found outside) [abbrev. for “church”].

Defn: … container.

18d    Watch credit here, lacking protection (6)

{TICKER} : [slang for financial credit granted for purchase of goods] + “hereminus its 1st and last letters(lacking protection).

20d    Practical lad follows script (5-2)

{HANDS-ON} : [a lad;a term of address for a younger person] placed below(follows, in a down clue) [one’s individual style of penning script;written characters].

Answer:  It’s (they’re) on Streisand… and did she start it all?


22d    Show runs rings around disheartened debutante (5)

{RODEO} : { [abbrev. for “runs” in cricket scores] + 2 x [the letter representing a ring] } containing(around) “debutanteminus all its inner letters(disheartened).

24d    Tedium in French? Yes, in French, we hear (5)

{ENNUI} : Homophone of (…, we hear) { [French for “in”] + [French for “yes”] }.

25d    Visual problem caused by dropping line from fashion (4)

{STYE} : [a fashion;a manner of dressing, writing, etc.] minus(dropping … from) [abbrev. for “line”].

Defn: An inflammation of the eyelid.

The Quick crossword pun: (havoc} + {Russian} + (err) = {have a crush on her}

46 comments on “DT 27537

  1. A not too difficult offering today but a lot more enjoyable than yesterdays. Thanks to setter and to Scchua for the review and excellent selection of pictures.

  2. 2*/3* for me today. My only issue was 5d which was my last one in simply because I couldn’t understand the wordplay for my answer. When I read Scchua’s comments I kicked myself for missing an inverted hidden word, which is not something that normally gives me a problem.

    24d was my favourite.

    Many thanks to Jay and to Scchua.

    1. Re. 5D – I also kicked myself when i saw Scchua’s explanation (thanks Scchua). I’d spent ages trying understand the wordplay for what was obviously the correct answer. A brilliant example of Jay at his sneakiest!

  3. I thought this was another very straightforward crossword – a bit more than 1* for difficulty and 3* for enjoyment.
    I missed the hidden answer in 12a for quite a while and never did spot the hidden and reversed bit in 5d although the answer was obvious.
    I liked 13 and 18a and 3 and 8d. My favourite was 15a.
    With thanks to Jay and scchua.

  4. My page is littered with asterisks today showing how many of this puzzle’s clues were especially appreciated. So I can’t pick one favourite. Many thanks to setter. Thank you Scchua for hints. Rather alarming pics for 15a – can we believe anything we see these days?

  5. Absolutely terrific grahics, if you get my drift, nudge, nudge, wink, wink, – many thanks to Jay for making them possible.
    Although not in the harder register, I found this puzzle thoroughly enjoyable.
    4d a new word for me, 9a very clever.
    Many thanks Jay and scchua for the review.

  6. Thank you ‘setter’, a very enjoyable puzzle – one or two clues needed a little more thought than did some others in order to extricate the answers, but all in all a most satisfying solve today. 23 across had me chuckling, as did 21 once the penny dropped. I must also add that despite some horrible comments about yesterday and Monday’s offerings, I enjoyed them both – it’s pleasing for me at least to be able complete the day’s offerings before resuming ‘other duties’.

  7. I see that you have a particular preference for a certain type of, shall I say it, female today Scchua. Well done for livening up the hints

  8. 2*/3* for me too. Not too difficult but not entirely straightforward either. I also missed the reversed hidden in 5d but worked it out from the checking letters. 3d is clever and my favourite.

  9. Very enjoyable but untaxing solve today. Not easy to choose a favourite today, but I think I’ll go for 21A. No, 23A. No, definitely 24D

    When I saw the scoreline 7-1, I thought it was describing someone’s bowling figures, not a football match. Busy day today – test match to watch with a few dips into the Tour de Yorkshire (even if it has popped over the channel – wonder if they had to push their bikes through the tunnel?)

  10. Thank you Jay, an enjoyable puzzle and just tricky enough to avoid the wrath of the experts http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif Many thanks Scchua for your review, hints and amazing photos ! You are back on your best form http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

  11. Enjoyable if untaxing crossword and a delightful pictorial review, thanks to Jay and scchua. Elkameres’ toughie is about the same degree of difficulty, worth a go!

  12. Agree with the ratings ,much ‘brighter’ than yesterday’s offering, not difficult, but needed some careful thought, liked 28a Thanks Scchua for the excellent Graphics-shows Barbara in a new light

    1. There is no 5a in the Quick Crossword – please ask again on the comment page as some of those reading this post may have saved the Quick puzzle for later.

  13. Please can somebody explain in words of one syllable (or less) to this thicko the reasoning for 5d. I’ve tried every whichway – even standing on my head – and I simply cannot get it. I’ve done the cryptic for more years than I will admit to, but I can’t ever remember getting held up like this. Anno domini setting in? All hints gratefully received

    1. Magmull, it’s hidden in “tsiTRA DESINgocer” or “recognised artist” reversed.

      1. Oh bless you – how did I come to miss it. Senility creeps on I fear, but thanks to you this old bat can relax – at any rate till the next time. Very many thanks.

  14. Just needed one or two explanations today to check our answers were correct, otherwise an enjoyable puzzle. Thank you setter and Scchua.

  15. Very pleasant solve sipping a beer in 80 degrees of heat and having savoured an amazing 7-1 match. A **/*** for me with 12, 15, 23a and 24d amusing. Thanks to the setter and reviewer.

  16. Another easy one today, so where are the clappers of doom wondering where the DT crossword is sinking to? I enjoyed this one, thanks Jay. My fave has to be 24d … how clever is that! Thanks scchua for the review.

  17. Well you have really outdone yourself today scchua. Whatever floats your boat , I suppose, and anyway I didn’t need to look (like most people).But thanks for all your hard work.
    I really liked 15a and 17d.Lots of terrific clues.

    1. Welcome Hammers fan – If you have a look at the comments at 14 above, all should become clear.

    2. Hammers fan I failed to see it too, you were not alone……we have joined the club at comment 2 :)

  18. Many thanks Jay, I enjoyed today’s duck soup. */***. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif Nevertheless I stupidly failed to recognise reasons for my 5d and 23a answers so thank you scchua for the explanations.

  19. Thanks to Jay for a lovely crossword, and to scchua for an entertaining review – you have indeed excelled yourself ;). I agree with most of the comments above, and with the rating of 1-1.5* difficulty and 3* enjoyment. Maybe I’m just in a very agreeable mood today!

  20. Usual enjoyable crossword from Jay – a bit easier this week in my opinion. Thanks to scchua for the review (among other things) and thanks to Jay. 1.5*/3.5*

  21. Nice little offering today. Enjoyed it very much. Not too taxing but testing enough for me to need a couple of nudges from Scchua. My rating is 2 and a tad/3 Many thanks to Schuaa for the entertaining review.

  22. Thanks to Jay and to scchua for the review and hints. An enjoyable puzzle today, was 2*/3*for me. Managed to go surfing at Woolacombe.

    1. Ahhh – surfing – love it! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif
      You should go to Newgale in Pembrokeshire – wonderful.

  23. If you just posted a comment as honestinjun, and a similarly offensive comment yesterday, please be advised that such comments, particularly those with fake email addresses, will be and have been deleted.

  24. I enjoyed today’s puzzle, much more then yesterday’s. Thanks to Scchua for his pictures of irreverence.

  25. I agree with the 1*/3* rating – very gentle but still satisfying in its way. No particular favourite clue, but thanks to Jay for a few smiles. Thanks to schuua for the review as well, and for the illustrations therewith.

  26. Is it just me, or has anyone else with the digital edition had yesterday’s fully-completed grid appear under today’s (Thursdays) number 27358?????

    Pete T.

  27. Thank you setter for an enjoyable puzzle. So enjoyable Mr NJ did most of it!! So I got to do the Toughie or not as the case may be. I enjoyed finishing it of and reading Scchua’s review and all your comments. 18a was my favourite out of those left to me. Thank you BD for all your work to make this blog such a pleasure.

    1. Welcome Julie,

      The answer comes from the first and last letters (all the outsiders) of DisputE MorE AggressioN

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