DT 27546 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27546 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27546 (Hints)

Big Dave’s Crossword Club

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Today is your last chance to enter 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    Messy sort runs when brush is around (6)
R(uns) inside a brush or scratch

10a    A sign of ignorance like this clue! (6)
The A from the clue and a sign indicating ignorance or inaccuracy

13a    Hosting internet, gain trolls (12)
An anagram (trolls) of INTERNET GAIN

16a    Frustrated diarist could be deserting job (7,5)
A well-concealed anagram (could be) of DESERTING JOB – a brilliant clue

20a    There’s something soothing about crooner for a dance (10)
A liquid preparation for soothing the skin around the surname of a crooner famous for such songs as Magic Moments and Delaware

ARVE Error: need id and provider

21a    Organised work session with loud complaint (4)
An organised work session, especially one for sewing, followed by the musical notation for loud

24a    Wading birds like others, twitching tail (6)
The Latin abbreviation of like or for example followed by a word meaning the others with the final two letters swapped (twitching tail)

25a    Person in charge of columns drove back without it (6)
To get this person in charge of the columns in a newspaper put the reversal (back) of a verb meaning drove or travelled around (without) IT


1d    Lowering small engine cover (8)
To get this verb meaning lowering or frowning S(mall) is followed by a removable engine cover of a vehicle

3d    Shabby cinema to furnish around spring (7)
A three-letter verb meaning to furnish or equip around a spring or jump

5d    Man attending Indian’s first served this (7)
This charade of a four-letter word for a man, a two-letter word meaning attending and the initial letter (first) of I[ndian] gives something that might be served in an Indian restaurant

7d    Man left in social group (6)
… this man is a chessman!

9d    Somehow mind big rock singer copying others (11)
… and this singer is of the feathered kind

14d    Upcoming fashion designer wearing something hot and elaborate (9)
The reversal (upcoming in a down clue) of the surname of a French fashion designer inside (wearing) something hot that can be found in a fire

15d    Commemorate sapper apparently (8)
Split as (2,6) this could be (apparently) a sapper or private in the Royal Engineers

19d    Surly detective taking over (6)
Kath will love this one! Put the surname of a fondly-remembered fictional detective around O(ver)

21d    Speculate about the Queen’s headgear (5)
A three-letter verb meaning to speculate or wager around our Queen’s regnal cipher

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: (profess} + {aplomb} = {Professor Plum} {}

60 comments on “DT 27546 (Hints)

  1. What a dreary boring slog of a crossword. Very little enjoyment with some really ghastly clues in 1a, 21a and 24a.
    Took two sittings to finish it, that’s an hour of my life I won’t get back!
    Well Mrs B’s and my opinion, I have no doubt others will differ http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif
    Thx to all
    PS Probably my opinion was influenced by the reference to the worst movie EVER made in 16a, that really was 2 hours of my life totally wasted

  2. I agree with Brian and Mrs B. Not a favourite crossword.

    Whilst I have the answer, I can’t deconstruct 11A, or, to be precise, the final three letters. At present, it is one of those disappointing ones which you know you have correct, but can’t appreciate why.

    1. The answer to 11a is a five letter word meaning fast with the final letter removed (taking short cut)

  3. 3*/3.5* for an excellent and enjoyable puzzle today. Many great clues with 16a my favourite.

    But one for the pedants’ corner. The answer to 7d is not the name of a chess man! As a verb 7d does describe a specific move made by the man in question but, although the piece resembles a 7d, that is certainly not its name!

    Many thanks to Mr Ron and to BD.

    PS. I expect tears from Kath today

    1. The OH and I looked up the more usual name for that piece and it derives from the Sanskrit ” ****” meaning Chariot……who knew? He didn’t and he’s a chess player of 50 yrs standing!

    2. I agree – a really good crossword but 19d finishes me off every time – think I’m becoming predictable! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cry.gif

      1. Never predictable Kath ;)

        ***** was a great character for all his curmudgeonly ways, I like the way Lewis learns a love of (some) opera from him. It was a superb programme which I really enjoyed

        His supposed Oxford house is actually in Ealing, they used to film it round the corner from where I used live

    3. I don’t understand why you say that the answer to 7d is not a chessman. Chambers gives it as an alternative word for the name in current usage.

      By the way, please stop publishing the “alternative” name unless you would like your comment to be deleted.

      1. BD, the alternative term used as the name for the piece is “verboten” in the chess world, and personally I think Chambers is wrong in this instance. Linguisitcally I suppose it could be the case that it has become a regularly used mistake which has led to it becoming accepted (although not in my book!).

        However, as the BRB is the bible, the setter is forgiven as he is following the rules, and also because in every other respect this was a brilliant puzzle!

        I wasn’t aware that I had mentioned the correct name for the piece as I was very conscious not to do so on a Saturday. But, if I did, it was a genuine mistake for which I apologise.

        1. The word you used was too close – it’s so much easier to wait until Friday to add info like that.

          I don’t see why players would be arrogant enough to regard an alternative name as “verboten” and I certainly wouldn’t say it was a mistake. Lighten up, it’s just a game.

          1. I am still very puzzled about what word I have used which represents an alternative answer as I have re-read my original comment and can’t see anything even close, but never mind let’s let it pass.

            And yes, BD, you are absolutely right. Chess is only a game and I do need to lighten up. I promise to try.

  4. Struggled a bit to get going but didn’t find it overly tricky, although in my relatively short experience of attempting to solve these things I would say that Saturdays of late have been a bit harder overall. Thanks to setter and BD **/***

  5. Well, I am firmly on the team of those who enjoyed this. As usual for me and the Saturday puzzle, most answers went in fairly easily and I was left with two or three I had to ponder, this time 1D and 8A. I loved 18A (loved the movie, too) but my favorite was the clever little 10A. Many thanks to the setter, and to BD for the review.

    I do wonder why some setters choose to remain anonymous. Is all their output unnamed, or are they perhaps well known under other pseudonyms but just enjoy going under the radar on occasion?

    1. I met the setter that I believe was responsible for this one at the recent Listener Dinner – he does have published aliases, but has never owned up to this fortnightly slot. Perhaps one day ….

  6. I must have been in a McIlroy-esque zone this morning. Finished in record time with barely a stumble. Untangling the 9d anagram held me up briefly but the rest just dropped straight in. It doesn’t happen often so a high enjoyment rating for the sheer excitement of it all – 1*/4*

  7. Thank you setter, that was a real struggle for me and certainly at the difficult end on the Saturday scale. Whilst there is some satisfaction in completing the puzzle, I am not too sure whether I enjoyed it a lot. Thanks BD for your hints – I thought that I might need some, but just got by without.

  8. A 3*/3* for me having struggled to get going for what seemed an age. 14d held me up because I put in a word that means the same but having challenged my thinking the SW corner eventually came together. 16a is excellent. Thanks to the setter and BD.

  9. I’m not quite finished yet, but seem to be making much heavier work of this one than I should. Looks like I’ve woken up particularly dim-witted and grumpy today :(. Favourite clue (so far) might have to be 13a, purely for its surface :).

    1. I too made heavier work of this puzzle than I should have, Kitty, but I got there in the end and I’m inclined to agree with Angel who suggests that the humid weather inhibits concentration but, in my case, it makes me grumpy as well – it’s not just you.

      1. I got there too, thanks Caravaggio :). You and anyone else are welcome to join me 1d in the grumpy corner until the heat lifts, but I’d feel bad to downrate the puzzle because of the weather.

  10. I thought this puzzle was quite entertaining, a little more difficult than the usual Saturday offering but I don’t mind that. I eventually got through it without recourse to the hints. 16A was a stinker for me. 10A was my favourite. Unfortunately no smilers today. My rating is 3.5/4 Thanks to Big Dave for the review.

  11. This was an 13a walk-in-the-park – welcome as the heat seems to inhibit concentration somewhat. Thank you Mr. Ron and also BD for a review devoid of all things risques (sans acute accent) – makes a change! I messed up the spelling of 13a until I realised it wouldn’t fit. 22a raised a smile. **/***. Found today’s Quickie more of a challenge than usual. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif

    1. Agree with you about the Quickie, Angel. It seemed to be a bit of a pig in a lamb’s grid, if that makes sense!

    2. No wonder I couldn’t solve the Quick crossword pun – I see it comes from Cluedo a game which I have never played. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_unsure.gif

  12. I really liked 13a, 16a as mentioned above, and 20a. Name of chess piece is fine according to my Chambers? my last entry was 11a. I quite enjoyed this puzzle, many thanks setter for taking my mind of this dismal weather – time to go to Greece. Thanks Big Dave.

  13. This took a bit of doing especially for a Saturday. Not one of my favourites, so I’m in the Brian and Mrs B. camp. ***/* rating for us. Thank you to the setter and to BD.

  14. Well – how divided we are today. I’m firmly in the “loved it” camp and thought it was good fun if a bit tricky in places but I’m happy to go along with those who say that the weather mucks up the concentration – any excuse being better than none.
    I was really slow to begin with.
    I didn’t know the engine bit for most of 1d – thought it was to do with chimneys.
    Couldn’t get 20a for ages – I could only think of the other old crooner who turns up in crosswords – always forget this one.
    I started off with the wrong first letter for 22a – same meaning but no wonder I couldn’t explain my answer – stupid!
    Lots of good clues – 13a (a novel anagram indicator!) and 9d and, needless to say, 19d (he’s got such a lovely face http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cry.gif ). My favourite was 16a.
    With thanks to whoever set this one and to BD.

    Very hot and sticky but who cares – we became great auntie and uncle for the second time just before 6.00am this morning. Hopefully off to Nottingham to meet her on Monday or Tuesday. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

    1. Hi Kath!

      To troll is a fishing term which may be understood in Xwords as anagram indicator! To troll about.

      1. Oh dear – I’m wrong again! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gifI interpreted it as meaning what internet trolls do i.e. mess things up or deliberately provoke.
        I knew the fishing term except I thought it was “trawl” but according to BRB it’s the same thing.
        Thanks anyway.

        1. Far be it from me to challenge the BRB but they are defintitely not the same. Trawling is what commercial fishing boats do, dragging a large net along the bottom of the sea. Trolling is trailing a bait or artificial lure with a rod and line behind a small boat, usually on a lake, sometimes a large river.

  15. I was one of those who got tied up in the SW corner, due to putting in the wrong answer for 24a. Then 3 fell into place together.

    I enjoyed 22a, as it reminded me of one of favourite blues tracks.

    Favourite, together with 22 was 12a- cute anagram…..

  16. An enjoyable solve.

    Faves : 8a, 16a, 24a, 7d, 14d &15d.

    Weather still sunny down here in 83 but storm forecast for tomorrow.

  17. Isn’t the diversity of opinion on this puzzle interesting? I found it pretty easy (2*) and quite pleasing (3*). I took a while to spot the anagram at 16a, which raised a smile when the penny dropped, and enjoyed 14d as well. Thanks to the setter, and to BD for the hints (albeit not needed).

  18. I am in the loved it group, though it was slightly tricky for a Saturday. Favourite is 16a. Thanks to setter and BD for review.

  19. I’ll join the trickier than usual Saturday group. Nothing really exciting about the crossword but I did like 20a – probably cos it reminded me of my youth! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_whistle3.gif
    Thanks to setter and BD for the hints.

  20. I have the answer for 6d but don’t understand it? Please could somebody explain it?

    1. A three letter word meaning strange is reversed (upset) and inside this you put a word meaning going wrong. The answer means a knightly adventure.

  21. Thanks to the setter and to Big Dave for the hints. I enjoyed this one a lot, but it was very tricky and, took me a long time. I got there in the end. Favourite was 23a, was 3*/3* for me. Off to the garden for half an hour after the Cricket.

  22. I enjoyed this one immensely . Took ages and 6d being the last one. A new word for me. Thanks to BD for clues which were needed! and to the setter. So much sport on the box to distract us.

  23. Clever crossword. Thank you setter and BD. I needed the explanation for 7d. Realised it had a chess connection. It was the NE corner that held me up. Had 1d on tip of my tongue and eventually got there. For some inexplicable reason took me aged to get 2d. If I had cracked 11a sooner I would have been spared the agony. I had another word in mind which I thought could mean run away, fast, and taking short cut. I thought the clue construction was brilliant in places and the surface reading excellent. Favourites 10, 13, and 23a and 14d. Did not like 15d. I am definitely in the Kath camp rather than the Brian camp (not for the first time).

  24. I found this quite tricky today. Needed some hints (and a glass of red) to finish it off. My favourite was 13a.

  25. I don’t think there’s a sport that would distract me from anything, gone are the days when I would drool over rugby players :)

    There’s been quite a lot of rain here, the air is a little fresher.

    As to the crossword, I’m in the camp of finding it 13a but it took me a while to 17d some of the answers

    Favourite clue was 12a mainly because I like the sound of the word

    In the non prize crosswords I like being able to tap on the answers if I’m really really stuck, it stops me staying awake trying to puzzle it out – thank you BD also for the H&T

    Thanks to the setter also

    Congratulations on being a great aunt Kath – it’s something I will never be naturally so I will just ‘adopt’ them

  26. Evening folks. Did this slowly while melting at Lord’s which frazzled me somewhat as I did not finish it until I got home. No real favourite today. Thanks to the Setter and for the review. Back tomorrow to see England take some early wickets.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

  27. I was not going to look at this one today, but having read some of the earlier divided comments, I printed it off, and took it with me to my local to look at, with a pre-dinner pint.
    I enjoyed it. Nothing too tricky, nor was it a write-in either. Thanks to setter, and to BD.

    1. 8a – This type of Wood is made up from two parts of the clue. The first is a wind instrument and the second is a piece of timber.

      If you are still stuck, try splitting the two consecutive parts as 4,4.

  28. I thought it was a bit on the easy side until I got to 1d ! I read BD’s hint carefully and finally got it.Hubris.Thanks BD and setter who remains so very anonymous.

  29. After 2 days where I really struggled this was one where all seemed fair and straightforward. Not easy but solvable without help.**/***

  30. Got everything but 2d and 12a.
    These did not seem to trouble anybody else so must be obvious, but not to me.

    1. 12a I called cop out for minor offence (10)
      An anagram (out) of I CALLED COP

      2d Cooker is new being in fashion (5)
      N(ew) inside a fashion or craze

    1. Welcome to the blog Terry

      I’ve said as much as I can for 16 across.

      17d Clear up press in print (4,3)
      A verb meaning to press followed by a 3-letter word meaning in print or already published.

  31. I thought this was terrible. No clues gave any smiles, and I think “frustrated” is a poor word to use in 16a and I am happy with 7d, although with hindsight it is just about ok, though I would not regard this as a “man. I only bought the paper on Saturday because I had done well clearing up Thursday and Friday ‘s puzzles, and this was a huge let down.

  32. Did this a day late. I’m definitely in the “a bit more tricky than usual for a Saturday” camp. All completed eventually, but I found some of it a bit frustrating, not helped by me putting an incorrect answer into 5d before I had any checking letters. Maybe I was just being slow. It certainly had its moments, with 13a raising a smile, but a few others I was less keen on. Pedants might say that 10a describes 7d! I know it is in the dictionary but alternatives that get into the BRB only due to long standing misuse by people who don’t know or care that it’s incorrect tend to grate a bit. I expect “invite” will be in there as a noun before long as well.
    Thanks to the mystery setter for giving us a bit of a Saturday workout anyway and to BD for the review.

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