DT 27540 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27540 (Hints)

Big Dave’s Crossword Club

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Have a go at our July Prize Puzzle. This month’s prize has been donated by Tim Moorey.

As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, an assortment of clues, including some of the more difficult ones, have been selected and hints provided for them.

Don’t forget that you can give your assessment of the puzzle. Five stars if you thought it was great, one if you hated it, four, three or two if it was somewhere in between.

Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”. Where the hint describes a construct a “usual” this means that more help can be found in The Usual Suspects, which gives a number of the elements commonly used in the wordplay. Another useful page is Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing, which features words with meanings that are not always immediately obvious.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions.

Some hints follow:


1a    Suit you’ll need when entering church (4)
To get this legal suit put a word meaning when inside the Church of England

3a    Cool number, new song about the French female (10)
The abbreviation for number followed by N(ew) and a song around the French feminine definite article

11a    Another court passage (7)
A verb meaning another or additional followed by C(our)T

13a    Questioning of physicist cut short by old American (7)
This adjective meaning questioning or inquisitive is derived from the surname of a famous husband and wife, who were both physicists, without its final letter (cut short) followed by O(ld) and the two-letter abbreviation for American

14a    Assembly of peers, triumvirate reforming economic policy? (11)
An anagram (ASSEMBLY) of PEERS followed by a triumvirate or team of three people acting equally as leaders

18a    Pep pill taken by one before endless criticism makes one become violently angry (2,9)
A two-letter word meaning pep followed by a spherical pill, I (one) and a word meaning criticism without its final letter (endless)

25a    Member of 15’s band, Ms Fitzgerald, back touring Canada, left for clubs (5-1-4)
Reverse the first name of Ms Fitzgerald around [C->L]ANADA after inserting L(eft) in place of the C(lubs)

26a    Nimble agent catching leader in race (4)
A secret agent around (catching) the initial letter (leader) of R[ace]


1d    Disdain shown by prisoner over bait (8)
One of the usual prisoners followed by a verb meaning to bait or lure

2d    Top of the bill set off on vessel (4,4)
A verb meaning to set off or initiate followed by a vessel, especially one used for storing the ashes of a cremated person

5d    Statesman in place of worship, unwell (9)
A place of worship followed by an adjective meaning unwell

8d    Insect set free by misguided set (6)
An anagram (free) of SET followed by an anagram (misguided) of SET

12d    A small gesture by topless people in clandestine meeting (11)
The A from the clue followed by S(mall), a gesture and people or race without their initial letter (topless)

15d    Much associated with this outlaw (5,4)
Much the Miller’s Son was one of his associates, as was 25 across

17d    Inadequate supply from Detroit perhaps following onset of strike? (8)
A phrase, somewhat like Motor Town, that could describe Detroit (3,4) preceded by the initial letter (onset) of S[trike]

20d    Drive mostly right, then left (6)
Most of an adjective meaning right or genuine followed by L(eft)

22d    Blow up second fountain (5)
S(econd) followed by a fountain or spring

Could new readers please read the Welcome post and the FAQ before posting comments or asking questions about the site.

As this is a Prize crossword, please don’t put any ANSWERS, whether WHOLE, PARTIAL or INCORRECT, or any ALTERNATIVE CLUES in your comment. If in doubt, leave it out!

Please read these instructions carefully. Offending comments may be redacted or, in extreme cases, deleted.

The Quick crossword pun: {carry} + {booze} = {caribous}


  1. bifield
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 9:50 am | Permalink

    An easy solve for a Saturday prize puzzle. No problems and not particularly enjoyable. Thanks to setter and to Big Dave for his hints.

  2. Little Dave
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    All done with no particular stand-out clues although 17d was rather nice. Thanks to BD and for the review and setter. And good luck to England at Trent Bridge today. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_heart.gif

    • Caravaggio
      Posted July 12, 2014 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

      What a remarkable morning’s cricket, Little Dave!

      • Rabbit Dave
        Posted July 12, 2014 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

        Amazing! Non cricket lovers will not understand the extraordinary fascination of five day Test cricket. Although this game will (almost certainly!) end in a draw tomorrow, it has been utterly spell binding, and if you had simply read about it you might assume it was a work of fiction.

        Still, given England’s recent sufferings at the hands of last wicket partnerships, it’s nice to see us getting our own back for once!

      • Little Dave
        Posted July 12, 2014 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

        Indeed! Glued in to TMS as I’m doing gardening jobs. Am off to Lord’s this week but only for the first 4 days! May do the fifth if it goes close.

  3. Expat Chris
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 11:30 am | Permalink

    Although I competed without hints, I definitely found this to be more of a challenge than the usual Saturday fare. I did like 17D. “Thanks to the setter and BD for the review.

  4. Sweet William
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 11:47 am | Permalink

    Thank you setter. Not too hard. A bit of googling to get 25a. Lovely morning in Hexham with family. Kite flying this afternoon. Thanks BD for the hints and photos.

  5. TREV
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 12:22 pm | Permalink

    What about 19d in DT27540? I’ve got an answer, but can’t make it fit the clue.

    • Prolixic
      Posted July 12, 2014 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

      Welcome Trev.

      The answer is made up from the first word of the clue, an abbreviation for someone who does not drink (dry), the usual letter for “one” and the abbreviation for circa (the Latin for about).

  6. Rai
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

    I was highly amused by 10A, needed Dave’s hint for 13A, but struggling to understand clue for 6D.

    • Kath
      Posted July 12, 2014 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

      6d The definition is argument. You want a ten letter word meaning change containing (involving) the one letter abbreviation for degrees Centigrade.

      • Rai
        Posted July 12, 2014 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

        A doh moment! Thank you Kath for your help though.

        • Kath
          Posted July 12, 2014 at 9:19 pm | Permalink

          Glad to have been of help even if it wasn’t needed. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

  7. Darryl
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 12:54 pm | Permalink

    Any help with 4d? I think I know the answer but can’t see how it relates to the clue!

    • crypticsue
      Posted July 12, 2014 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

      If you have the right answer, you should have a school of art – try splitting the solution 1, 4 and the first part of the clue should make sense.

    • Prolixic
      Posted July 12, 2014 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

      The answer is a form of abstract painting. It comes from the usual letter for love or zero followed by another word for a role in a play or drama.

      • Darryl
        Posted July 12, 2014 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

        Got it! Never heard the expression before – though partner (architect) tells me I really should have…..

  8. Caravaggio
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

    Anyone who’s familiar with Prokofiev’s Lieutenant Kijé suite will know the name of a certain type of Russian horse-drawn transport, which forms part of the answer to 14a, but it wasn’t until I read Dave’s hints that I realised why it’s actually called that. Thank you, Dave, and Chambers too because I’ve learned something this morning – and that’s pleased me.

    • Hrothgar
      Posted July 12, 2014 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

      Love that music, First heard as a child, stayed with me.

  9. Kath
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

    I found some of these quite tricky – very hot in Oxford today – think I have a boiled brain – well, that’s my excuse anyway.
    I don’t know anything about 15d other than the most obvious stuff so was completely mystified by the first word of the clue and 25a threw me too – husband to the rescue!
    6d caused a few problems too – thought change was a verb so the first five letters made sense but the rest didn’t – took ages to work it out. Stupid!
    I liked 10a and, eventually, 14a and 16d. My favourite was 17d.
    With thanks to today’s setter and to BD.
    Slightly – well, OK quite a lot – put off by the title of the NTSPP! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif Will give it a go as it’s too hot to do anything useful.

  10. SheilaP
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

    Finished today without too many problems. I expect some will not find it much of a challenge, but we enjoyed it a lot so thank you to the setter and to BD for his explanations.

  11. Derek
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 1:28 pm | Permalink

    Fairly easy solve today!

    Faves : 14a, 25a, 8d & 15d.

    Cool, cloudy day here in the Var.

  12. Rabbit Dave
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 1:33 pm | Permalink

    I was getting through this quickly today until I got held up for a while in the NE corner, but eventually finished in just over 2* time with 3* for enjoyment.

    I think 25a should be enumerated (5, 1’4) not (5-1-4).

    My favourite was 14a.

    Many thanks to the setter and to BD.

  13. pommers
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

    I’m posting this while sat on the balcony at our apartment where we now have t’internet, and faster than at home http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

    Enjoyed this puzzle which seemed to me a tad trickier than usual for a Saturday. ***/**** from us.

    Thanks to the setter and to BD.

    Off for a swim now http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cool.gif

  14. Hrothgar
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

    Enjoyed this, a bit harder than usual Saturday fare.
    Thought 10a a clever anagram and chuckled over 3a and 25a.
    Many thanks to the setter and to BD for the review.

  15. Vancouverbc
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 4:18 pm | Permalink

    A straightforward solve sat in 80 degrees of heat and a gentle breeze. A 2*/3* for me or in my classification a 1 beer solve. Thanks to the setter and BD.

  16. Martin
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 4:26 pm | Permalink

    a fun puzzle, I think I have an answer for 7d but struggle to fit the clue. Otherwise I really liked 10a, 14a and 16a.

    • crypticsue
      Posted July 12, 2014 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

      7d is a straightforward double definition clue.

      • Martin
        Posted July 12, 2014 at 5:59 pm | Permalink

        Thank you CrypticSue, my brain is clearly not in tune today as this is only one I missed so I even had all the checking letters; must be too much English sun!

        • crypticsue
          Posted July 12, 2014 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

          The sun only came out here at 5 this afternoon http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif

          Your second comment also had to be ‘approved’ because you had changed your email address. Both should work from now on.

          • Kath
            Posted July 12, 2014 at 9:21 pm | Permalink

            Our sun only went at about 5.00pm – really hot all day and still is.

            • crypticsue
              Posted July 12, 2014 at 9:23 pm | Permalink

              I’ve got my jumper back on now !

  17. Merusa
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 5:01 pm | Permalink

    I, too, found this a little tricky for a Saturday puzzle but loved it, lots of clever clues. I “got” 15d immediately but was completely fooled by the first word in the clue. When I got to 25a, I googled the famous band, then the meaning of the first word in 15d became clear. My favourite is 25a. Thanks to setter and BD for review. I’m so sorry it’s over, had so much fun with this solve today.


  18. GWizz
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 5:58 pm | Permalink

    A nice Saturday puzzle with a couple of trickier-then-usual clues. My fave was 3a simply because I love the sound of the word. Thanks to setter and BD.

  19. Collywobbles
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

    Just finished due to the intervention of The Tour and the Cricket. Please to see 2 Indian wicketw have just fallen. Thoroughly enjoyable puzzle by, I presume, Mysteron, and many thanks to BD for the hints

  20. Amanda
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 7:11 pm | Permalink

    I found this far harder than usual for a Saturday. Needed lots of electronic aids plus BD’s help for the last 3 clues.
    The quickie was hard, too http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cry.gif

  21. Brian
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 7:36 pm | Permalink

    What a tough crossword, it’s taken me all day to finish this one. Must admit I had no idea what 14a was and how can the last four letters of 22d possibly be a fountain, they go up and this goes down! Don’t get 19d, what has it to do with dry?
    Definitely NOT my favourite Saturday puzzle.
    Thx for the much needed hints.

    • Merusa
      Posted July 12, 2014 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

      Re 19d, see prolix’s reply to trev’s posting #5

    • crypticsue
      Posted July 12, 2014 at 9:17 pm | Permalink

      You are seeing them as nouns, but as verbs the last four letters of 4d and fountain mean the same thing.

  22. Heno
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to the setter and to Big Dave for the hints. I managed this ok in the end, but I was held up by 3,10,14a and 12d. All quite unusual words. Favourite was 10a. Last in was 3a. Was 3*/3* for me. Did most of it in the park at Minehead, but sadly back in the Smoke now http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cry.gif

  23. Owdoo
    Posted July 12, 2014 at 11:57 pm | Permalink

    Mrs O went shopping so I was able to enjoy the cricket and the crossword whilst also keeping the washing machine busy. Who says men can’t multi-task eh?!
    Puzzle was quite straightforward I thought but fun. 2*/3*
    Thanks setter and BD for the review.

  24. Una
    Posted July 13, 2014 at 12:01 am | Permalink

    All done and dusted now but I did need BD’s hint for 20d, tricky enough, I thought.Thanks setter and BD.

  25. reggie
    Posted July 13, 2014 at 6:31 am | Permalink

    At first sight looked tricky but once started filled in quite quickly. No help required but that said I really don’t understand the suit part of 1a. Also although 15dand 25 became pretty obvious I didn’t know much the pointer.

  26. Gill
    Posted July 13, 2014 at 7:48 am | Permalink

    Brilliant crossword – but stuck on 19d – any clues?

    • gazza
      Posted July 13, 2014 at 9:28 am | Permalink

      Welcome to the blog Gill.
      See the reply to TREV at comment #5.

  27. Angel
    Posted July 13, 2014 at 11:01 pm | Permalink

    I am glad I wasn’t the only one who found this rather unusually heavy going for a Saturday puzzle and I personally needed plenty of hints and electronic help to complete.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-phew.gif ****/***