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DT 27562

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27562

Hints and tips by Kath

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

Good morning all – it looks as if it’s going to be a lovely day in Oxford – maybe the Met men have got it wrong! Archy is busy, Mehitabel has said if he won’t play then she won’t either so it’s just me, with BD doing the bits that I still can’t do! I’m quite sure that this is a Ray T crossword.

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 Lucky devil on a trip abroad (12)
PROVIDENTIAL — An anagram (abroad) of DEVIL ON A TRIP. It’s so good for the morale to have a great big long anagram right the way across the top to get you started!

9a Supporter’s order unfinished in bar (9)
BRASSERIE — This bar is a simple restaurant. Start off with a woman’s undergarment (supporter) with the ‘S and follow that with an order or sequence without the final letter (unfinished).

10a Cold sponge, toe to head (5)
ALOOF — The sponge is rough and scratchy and made from natural material – it has three alternative spellings – if you pick the right one and put its last letter at the beginning (toe to head) with a bit of luck you’ll end up with a word meaning cold or detached.

11a Inside restrains a neurotic lunatic (6)
INSANE — Here we go – it’s one of the hidden lurking ones! I found this without too much trouble but can’t help wondering how many more there will be.

12a Facing work with flower plot (8)
OPPOSITE — Start with the usual two letter abbreviation for a musical work, follow them with a two letter Italian river (flower) and finish off with another word for a plot or place.

13a Better to accept advice finally from doctor (6)
HEALER — The better here means stronger or in better health and contains the last letter of advice (finally).

15a Turn small pan over for vegetables (8)
PARSNIPS — Start off with a four letter word meaning turn or rotate, the one letter abbreviation for S(mall) and another word for pan – not a container but a word meaning criticise – and then turn it all round. I do hope you all understand that – not sure that I’ve explained it very well.

18a Appearance by Queen lavishly ends earlier (8)
FORMERLY — Begin with a four letter word meaning appearance or structure, add the two usual letters for our Queen and finish off with the first and last letters (ends) of lavishly.

19a Animals issued with large back of humps (6)
CAMELS — Another word for issued or flowed out, then L(arge) and the last letter (back of) humps. What a brilliant clue!

21a Literal account given by minister (8)
ACCURATE — This adjective means to the letter or word for word. The usual two letter abbreviation for account comes before a minister who assists a vicar or rector.

23a Shameless, to need love before noon, in short (6)
WANTON — A word used to describe a shameless, immodest or brazen appearance is made up from a need or desire followed by the letter that looks like a zero (a love score in a game of tennis) and then the one letter abbreviation for noon (in short).

26a Bear, Mohawk’s original symbol (5)
TOTEM — A verb meaning to bear or carry followed by the first letter (original) of Mohawk.

27a Nuisance embracing single girl upset killjoy (9)
PESSIMIST — This killjoy is someone who never looks on the bright side of life! He (or she) is made up from another word for a nuisance or troublesome thing or person containing (embracing) a reversal (upset) of the letter that looks like a one and a girl or young unmarried woman.

28a Bloke’s scream approaching unending stretch for killing (12)
MANSLAUGHTER — Begin with another word for a bloke or chap, with the ‘s, then the kind of scream that is induced by something funny and finish off with a stretch or length of time without the final letter (unending).


1d Left one’s husband by bar to circulate (7)
PUBLISHI spent far too long trying to make this begin with ‘port’ (left) – it doesn’t! The circulate means to make available to the public – start with a bar or place serving drinks and follow it with L(eft), the letter that looks like a one, again with the ‘s, and finish off with the single letter abbreviation for H(usband).

2d Stones featuring old sidekick Watts’ finale (5)
OPALS — The one letter abbreviation for old, a sidekick or mate and the last letter (finale) of Watts.

3d Unfaithful siren, nice in a bad way (9)
INSINCERE — An anagram (in a bad way) of SIREN NICE.

4d The woman’s commonly spoken mistakes (4)
ERRS — This is how you would say that something belongs to the woman but the commonly spoken bit means that you drop your H.

5d Pie hasn’t splattered actor (8)
THESPIAN — An anagram (splattered) of PIE HASN’T.

6d Awfully long, awful massacre often starts battle (5)
ALAMO — This battle was during the Texas Revolution against Mexican rule and Davy Crockett, among others, was killed in it. It’s a Ray T special and comes from the first letters (starts) of the first five words in the clue. Anyone who says that you don’t learn stuff from crosswords is wrong.

7d The setter’s raised with obedience outside home (8)
DOMICILE — This home or place of residence comes from two letters for how the setter might refer to himself (the setter’s / the setter is) reversed (raised) with a word meaning obedient or tame and easy to control around them (outside).

8d Consumed case of raspberries eating fine dessert (6)
AFTERS — A slightly slangy word for a dessert or pud is a word meaning consumed or taken in followed by the first and last letters (case of) raspberries and containing (eating) F(ine).

14d Outrage seeing altar boy oddly on town (8)
ATROCITY — The odd letters (oddly) of altar boy and then another word for a large town.

16d Marine‘s a force in extreme environment (9)
SEAFARING — A word meaning extreme which could be applied to temperature or a withering comment contains (environment) the A from the clue and F(orce).

17d Animal act taking time with tailless cat (8)
PLATYPUS — This animal is an aquatic burrowing one that lives in Australia. Another word for act or take the role of contains (taking) the one letter abbreviation for T(ime) and followed by a cat or moggy without the final letter (tailless).

18d Starves consuming last of sustenance? Hardly! (6)
FEASTS — A word meaning starves or eats nothing contains (consuming) the last letter of sustenance and the answer means the exact opposite (hardly!).

20d Belonging to ‘chosen’, a Tory politician (7)
SENATOR — An American politician is lurking in the middle of clue. It was the one that nearly got away from me – oh dear!

22d Drink followed by endless pole dance (5)
RUMBA — A spirit made from fermented sugar-cane juice or molasses is followed by the first two letters of a three letter word for a pole or rod (endless).

24d Idiot swallowing Sun’s spin (5)
TWIST — An idiot or nincompoop contains (swallowing) the one letter abbreviation for S(un).

25d Area covering Thailand formerly — mass in excess? (4)
ASIA —This area is a large continent. Begin with the one letter abbreviation for A(rea) and follow it with what Thailand was called until 1949 then remove the M – M(ass) in excess.

I thought all the clues were so good that it’s almost impossible to pick out any in particular, let alone one favourite but I’ll have a go – 1 and 19a and 2 and 17d. Any one of those could be my favourite.

The Quick Crossword pun: hang + run + aid = hand grenade

55 comments on “DT 27562

  1. Thanks to Kath for a terrific review – a model of clarity. Thanks also to Ray T for what I thought was a bit trickier than his usual level.

  2. Brilliant stuff! 3*/5* for me today.

    Too many excellent clues to pick one favourite.

    Many thanks to the impeccable Ray T and to the excellent Kath!

  3. Echo Gazza, good review which cleared up some wordplay for me.

    thanks to Kath and the setter.

  4. Definitely on the tricky side, especially the bottom half. I found it hard to string answers together because all the crossing letters I got seemd to be vowels. Cue desperate cries of ‘a consonant please Carol’. Got there in the end and enjoyed the journey. Favourite clue definitely 10a. Thanks RT and well done Kath.

  5. Having completed this without hints, finding the solutions mostly from the definitions , I read your review carefully . Your explanations of 9a, 10a and 13a were very insightful , although I still wonder what the small word for turn is.So thanks Kath and well done.Thanks as well to Ray T.

    1. Which clue has the small word for turn? I think you must mean 15a in which case it’s ‘spin’.

  6. Great stuff.
    I struggled, struggled and struggled but got there eventually.
    Special mention – 15a, 27a and 28a.
    Many thanks Ray T.
    Brilliant review Kath many thanks.

  7. What a treat having two consecutive days of excellent puzzles from this setter. Nice to have a few clever anagrams to make this one a bit easier than yesterday’s Toughie but still right up there for fun.
    Thanks RayT and Kath.

  8. Cannot believe I finished a Ray T! It was hard work and i didn’t fully understand all of them but I got there.
    Thx to you Kath for explaining 22d and 13a. And I must thank Ray T for providing me with a Thursday crossword I could complete.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

  9. That was a pleasant puzzle to solve – and what a good review. Hope you’ll be a regular feature, Kath

  10. Struggled with this a bit today, but that’s probably my own fault for a) putting OPPOSING in for 12A and convincing myself it had to be right and b) starting the crossword just as the Test Match started which meant I was somewhat distracted (especially when India were 8 for 4)

      1. Agreed – i don’t usually do the quickie but took a look and it really is the bomb!

  11. A very enjoyable and slightly tricky crossword from RayT and a superb review from Kath, many thanks to both.

  12. Excellent review from Kath, without whom, we would have given up I’m afraid. I simply cannot do RayT’s crosswords at all. They make no sense to me. I know I’m in the minority here, but it’s horses for courses I suppose. Thank you to the setter and to Kath.

    1. I thought that this was one of the easier Thursday offering for a long time- I used to struggle with Ray T’s puzzles but I thought today’s was a breeze. Either he’s losing his touch or I’m coming round to his way of thinking (probably the latter).

      I liked 9a and 19a- they definitely raised a smile.

      A **/*** from me, which I realise puts me in a minority.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif

  13. Rewarding to have completed today! After about **** and two cups of tea I finally got my last one which was 7 down – still not sure about whether the surrounding word means “raised with obedience” (adj) rather than just obedience (noun), the raised already used to reverse the “setter’s” part. Also not sure where the last letter of 13 across comes from. Very enjoyable though and agree with 4 stars.

    1. Please don’t post solving times on here – good or bad!

      I took 7 down as being I’M (the setter’s) reversed (raised) inside DOCILE (with obedience).

      In 13 across better is HALER.

      1. Apologies, i’m new to commenting although have found the blog useful for some time. Hale is a new word to me I must admit, and agreed “with obedience” clears that up. Many thanks Dave!

        1. It’s not a problem – some websites allow “boasting” but you have to take the times with a pinch of salt. Mark Goodliffe consistently solves three difficult Times puzzles in under 30 minutes in the Times Crossword Championships – now those are “real” times!

          1. Gosh, I certainly wasn’t being boastful! On the contrary, I am delighted to finish a puzzle at all, regardless of time, and I find it rewarding largely because it does require perseverance on my part as I probably have the bare minimum general knowledge necessary – a fact I keep telling my father to reassure him that he is quite capable of solving them too, without resorting to his gadgets! Hopefully with the help of this blog I will continue to improve and complete more.

              1. Well i’ve certainly learnt not to mention any times! Unless I express in terms of cups of tea (possibly coffee for harder ones). Thanks for the explanations today Kath!

                1. I think you’d be allowed to say that it took you hours. Just don’t specify how many! I’m doubtful that my solving times would make too many people feel bad, but I love the ethos behind not publishing them. This is a friendly site which doesn’t pit solvers against each other :). Which suits me, because it’s not a competition.

                  (Unless I win :lol:)

                2. I agree with everything that Kitty has said. Someone did once say that they’d need a calendar rather than a stopwatch which made me laugh at the time, and still does now.
                  When I first dared to write a comment – just over four years ago now – I wasn’t sure if something (can’t remember what now) was allowed and BD said that the only things banned here were libel and bad language. I think we could usefully add “solving times”!

                    1. OK – I give in.An unwritten rule I would have thought, but entirely sensible or the whole blog might combust and we’d all hate that! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cry.gif

                  1. Ironically, in my original comment I was being so careful not to give answers away that I didn’t even consider that revealing the solving time would be a problem!

                3. Oh, and by the way be careful at weekends. They are prize crosswords – there are no answers inside the brackets. Read and take notice of the big red notice that jumps out and bites you on the bum – you really can’t miss it.

  14. Thank you Ray T for another great puzzle – I agree with so many of the above comments that it was quite a bit harder than the normal Ray T offering and I found it difficult to get going. I was saved by the anagrams in the NW corner which finally gave me a foothold. Thanks Kath for your excellent review and hints.

  15. Tricky puzzle for me having started briskly completing the NW corner then slowed dramatically and managed to mess up 10a and 8d. Thanks to Kath for an enlightening analysis and the setter for a good work out. 3.5/4*.

  16. I seem to be in a minority in thinking that this was perhaps the easiest RayT ever! Good job too as we had very limited time over a very quick lunch break while sorting out the apartment – I HATE same day turnarounds http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_negative.gif Old clients out at noon and next one’s arriving at 1600 doesn’t give much time but, hey ho, we managed it http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif Back home now so it’s time for a couple or three cold ones http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

    No real favourites in this one, it was all good. */**** from us methinks.

    Thanks to RayT and also thanks and well done to Kath for an excellent review.

  17. I found this decidedly HARD! In fact, I missed three in the top right-hand side, though how I could miss 15a I don’t know, one of my fave veggies. Fave is 10a, runner up 17d. Thanks to RayT, and special thanks to Kath for bailing me out with the hints for my missing answers.

  18. Eek! For some reason 10a defied me. Grrrrr! And then 8d… one of my least favourite words in the English language!
    Oh well, I more or less got there I suppose, an enjoyable tussle; so thanks Ray T and Kath for the hints. Well done that lady! Oops, hope I don’t sound patronizing!

  19. Well, I thought this was a lovely puzzle, and just tricky enough to keep me pondering for a while without reaching the point of tearing my hair out. The bottom went in first for me – a little strange since I think the anagrams were all in the top half, although I was solving paperless.

    2.5*/3.5* or thereabouts, with the two animally clues tying for favourite. 11a also made me smile, and I loved the surfaces of 5d and 22d too. The last pair entering Kitty’s grid was 10a/11d.

    Great crossword, super review. Thanks to RayT and Kath, and smiles for everyone :).

  20. Very many thanks to Kath for the review, ‘in her own write’, and to everybody else for your comments.


    1. I have John Lennon’s book In His Own Write first edition. My pride and joy, brilliant man.

    2. Thanks for your comment. I do hope that I’m not displaying too much ignorance when I say that it took Merusa’s reply to you for me to understand. Oh dear!! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif

      1. Not at all, Kath. It’s not a very well-known book, but well worth a read if you can get hold of a copy.


  21. It’s a reflection of how far I am from Ray T’s wavelength (except his evident love of Queen, natch) that I got more answers in his Toughie yesterday than I did today. The harder he thinks it is, the easier I find it. I didn’t finish either of them, mind you. The day I finish one of his crosswords … I don’t even know. :)

  22. Excellent crossword from Ray T and great review from Kath. I certainly found it easier than yesterday’s Beam and about “normal” for a Ray T. ***/****

  23. Thanks to Ray T and to Kath for the review and hints. I enjoyed this one, but I managed about three quarters of it, and ran out of brain. Needed 5 of Kath’s excellent hints to finish. The setter did me up like a kipper, I had no idea how to solve those 5. Favourite was 2d. Was 4*/3* for me.

  24. Just like the Toughie another “honest” puzzle, maybe “””/””””http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif
    I’m 70, thanks for the old grey matter workouts.

  25. Quite a struggle but made it without needing Kath’s very clear hints. Thanks Ray T and well done Kath – all on your lonesome too. Busy day tomorrow so hope for an easy cruciverbal ride. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_neutral.gif

  26. Bit of an odd one today as I found it very straight forward except for 7d . I was certain that the answer was a home and also where the setter came in but didn’t cotton on to it being an anagram as well.
    Really liked the twists in the clues. **/****

    1. 7d wasn’t really an anagram – it was ‘IM” (I’m – the setter would say I am) with a word meaning ‘with obedience’ (docile) around it (the ‘outside’ from the clue).

  27. how any people, like me (!) put in “Craven” for 23a. I still think it is viable answer. It could mean shameless, to need love could well be “crave” and then “n” for noon. Of course it fouled up the whole of my South Eastern corner. Frustration !!

    1. I have to confess that ‘craven’ didn’t occur to me for 23a and if anyone else had that as their answer they haven’t owned up! I can sort of see what you mean but I suspect that the moral here is if you’re having trouble with a whole corner the chances are that something is wrong.

  28. A Beam Toughie followed by a superb RayT Cryptic — how good is that!

    Completed this last night without hints. Most enjoyable indeed. So many excellent clues to select from. Particularly liked 9a, 19a, 26a and 17d.

    Have also much enjoyed going through Kath’s thoughtful and beautifully worded review. Pleased to say I had parsed everything correctly.

    Thanks and appreciation to RayT and to Kath. Super puzzle complemented by a super review.

  29. What a delight of a puzzle which I solved over three separate sittings on three separate days. Each and every clue needed teasing out. Well done Ray T and well done Kath for an excellent review. I really like the personal touches and the honesty. Ta to all concerned

  30. Really enjoyed this one. Did it in the much-needed breaks between scraping wallpaper! 1A was fun in particular. Thanks to Ray T for setting and to Kath for the review.

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