DT 27611 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

DT 27611

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27611

Hints and tips by Deep Threat

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

Good morning from South Staffs on another sunny autumn morning.

A nice pangram from Giovanni today – and if I’d realised sooner that I was looking for a pangram, I wouldn’t have taken so long to get 7d, my last one in.

In the hints below, the definitions are underlined. The answers are hidden under the ‘Click here!’ buttons, so don’t click if you don’t want to see them.

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           Excellent companion — a politician and I will get on (8)
CHAMPION – Put together the initials of an order of chivalry whose members are known as companions, A from the clue, the usual politician, I and ON (both from the clue).

5a           Sound of drunken sailor in unruly incident at the controls (6)
HIJACK – This is a homophone of a phrase (4,4) which might describe a sailor under the influence of alcohol or other substances.

9a           A Parisian suit’s beginning to get greasy — so clean (8)
UNSOILED – Put together a French indefinite article, the first letter of Suit, and a word for greasy.

10a         Very little time for measuring the pulse? (6)
MINUTE – Double definition, the second being the period of time over which heartbeats are measured to give a pulse rate.

12a         One can tell what pressure we are under (9)
BAROMETER – Cryptic definition of an instrument for measuring atmospheric pressure.

13a         Rise from place say, having been knocked over (3,2)
GET UP – Start with a three-letter verb for ‘place’ followed by the Latin abbreviation for ‘say’ or ‘for example’, then reverse the whole lot.

14a         I become cross, having come to destroy beast (4)
IBEX – I (from the clue) followed by BE (‘become’ with the ‘come’ destroyed) and a cross-shaped letter.

16a         Longed to be scholarly, given new head (7)
YEARNED – Change the first letter of a word meaning scholarly to get one meaning ‘longed’.

19a         One of two arches either side of a bridge (7)
EYEBROW – Cryptic definition of a feature of your face.

21a         Enthusiasm brings prizes, though with many missing out (4)
ZEST – Hidden in the clue.

24a         Fortune no end about to be made — filthy money (5)
LUCRE – A word for fortune with its last letter missing, followed by the Latin word for about or concerning.

25a         Good to join mate visiting a nice rickety bar (3,6)
GIN PALACE Good followed by an anagram (rickety) of A NICE with a mate or friend inside it.

27a         Crime writer managed to get ink flowing (6)
RANKIN – A word for managed or organised followed by an anagram (flowing) of INK, to give the author of the Inspector Rebus books.

28a         New poet isn’t one to help friends or relations (8)
NEPOTIST – Anagram (new) of POET ISN’T.

29a         Depression over with first husband out of the way (6)
TROUGH – A word for over or finished with the first instance of Husband removed.

30a         Like yarn running through a book? (8)
STITCHED – Cryptic description of something relating to the binding of a book rather than its content.


1d           US television network includes odd bits (6)
CRUMBS – One of the major US television networks, with another word for odd inside it.

2d           Promise made by fool on northern river (6)
ASSURE – Put together a fool and a river which runs through North Yorkshire.

3d           Solid figure of knight turning up to be received by premier (5)
PRISM – Reverse (turning up) the title given to a knight and put the result inside the initials denoting David Cameron’s office.

4d           Open with a sign that something’s wrong — stress too much (7)
OVERTAX – A word for ‘open’ followed by A (from the clue) and the opposite of a tick when teacher marked your homework.

6d           Tumbler’s content ______, that’s clear! (9)
ISINGLASS – Split (2,2,5) this represents a true statement of where to find the contents of a tumbler. Otherwise it’s a clear liquid used in winemaking and to preserve eggs.

7d           Spanning entrance to theatre is a charmingly old-fashioned etching (8)
AQUATINT – A (from the clue) and ‘charmingly old-fashioned’ wrapped around the first letter of Theatre.

8d           Dan keeps crashing — protection for joints needed (4,4)
KNEE PADS – Anagram (crashing) of DAN KEEPS.

11d         Supplicate quietly — bit of hope follows (4)
PRAY – The musical symbol for ‘quietly’ followed by a bit of hope or sunshine.

15d         Ban the heartless group trafficking? (9)
BARTERING – Put together a word for ban, the outside letters of ThE, and a group of people.

17d         Trouble taken initially to store the Spanish litres — in this cupboard? (8)
CELLARET – Trouble or anxiety followed by the first letter of Taken, with the Spanish definite article and an abbreviation for litres inside it. The definition is a case or cupboard which contains bottles of wine, and that’s the second time this year I’ve blogged a Giovanni crossword with that word in it. The last time was in DT27377.

18d         Style of singing that could convey noble act (3,5)
BEL CANTO – Anagram (could convey) of NOBLE ACT.
ARVE Error: need id and provider

20d         Person full of humour and energy gets remuneration (4)
WAGE – A wit or humorous person, followed by Energy.

21d         Re-establishment of Nazi set is most bizarre (7)
ZANIEST – Anagram (re-establishment of) of NAZI SET.

22d         Hunger in the morning when there’s possible food around? (6)
FAMISH – A source of food found at sea wrapped around the Latin abbreviation for ‘in the morning’.

23d         Ten roughly accommodated in apartment? Only five here (6)
PENTAD – Anagram (roughly) of TEN inside an informal word for an apartment.

26d         After start of argument fight roughly (5)
ABOUT – The first letter of Argument followed by a fight, especially in a boxing tournament.

The Quick Crossword pun COLLIE + FLOUR = CAULIFLOWER

44 comments on “DT 27611

  1. 2*+/3*. I finished all but two clues of this pangram in 2* time, but 17d (a new word for me) and 19a (my last one in and favourite) took me to just over 2*, hence the “+”! After three enjoyable Fridays on the trot I am beginning to lose my paraskeviphobia. I think I’ve made that up by removing dekatria (= thirteen) from paraskevidekatriaphobia (= fear of Friday 13th).

    Many thanks to Giovanni and to DT.

  2. Managed to find time to do this in the morning, so you have the pleasure of my ramblings today. Another pretty tough one! I was very pleased with myself for finishing unaided, especially as there were three unfamiliar words (7d, 17d & 23d) which I deduced and then looked up. I wasn’t 100% sure about 30a, so nice to have that confirmed.

    Thanks to the Don for the challenge and Deep Threat for the safety net. And Happy Friday to you all :).

  3. I ended up being stumped by a couple of the cryptic definitions, which are always my weak point. Although if I’d remembered the relevant word for sailor, 5a should have been easy.

    I also thought it would be a pangram given that I had Z and X early on, but then forgot about that, which would have helped me with 7d ! I did get the cupboard though.

    Thanks for the hints…

  4. Oh Joy! today is the first time i have ever used a pangram to help me solve a clue. I solved the quadrants clockwise and by the time I got to enthusiasm (21a) I knew it was a word beginning with a Z before i found the hidden word. Very satisfying! Of course no-one in my household cares about these things, so I am happy to be able to write about it here. And happy to see this word again after it should have been the answer to “coat with zip(4)” recently, though today it is only being used as a noun.

    But what a great puzzle! so many beautifully crafted clues. I marked many favourites, including every across clue in the bottom half. I’m not sure there’s a lot of point in saying this, but I especially liked 5a,9a,14a, 21a,25a,27a,28a,29a,30a,4d,6d,7d,11d,21d

    I wasn’t familiar with the singing term, but the anagram was straight forward. last one in was 19a where i was trying some pretty horrible permutations of the clue – and when i got it i realised i was raising mine.

    Thank you Giovanni and Deep Threat

  5. A game of two half’s for me, top **,bottom*** so average a 2.5 *,enjoyment *** lots of excellent clues,never spotted a pangram yet, never occurs to me somehow.6d has been in a few crosswords lately,it can be split 1/4/4 to make another meaningful charade. Thanks DT for the blog-is 7d pic Mont Saint Michel.

  6. Just my cup of tea so thanks go to Giovanni. Plenty of head-scratching but got there in the end after seeking Thesaurus help for 7d and 17d. I’m not too sure about 6d although that had to be the solution. Thank you DT for being there in case of need. ***/***. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_lol.gif

  7. Thanks to Giovanni and to Deep Threat for the review and hints. A very good puzzle, but too difficult for me. Needed 5 look ups and 1 hint to finish. Lots of obscure words as usual. Had never heard of 7d,17d,18d,27a&23d. Was 4*/2* for me. Off to Ascot races and Beer Festival.

    1. Yep – I’m with you all the way. Thank goodness it wasn’t just me! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif I’m off to the Wildlife Trust AGM and then a 70th birthday party – think I’d prefer your agenda!

  8. I’d say 3* for both difficulty and enjoyment.
    I’ve just discovered something – getting an answer wrong makes life far more difficult than just being unable to do one (or even two!) Oh dear.
    I was generally a bit slow with the whole thing. Having got the Z and the X I started to look out for a pangram – by the time it would have helped I’d forgotten about it. Oh dear, again!
    I liked 12 and 27a and 8d.
    With thanks to Giovanni and Deep Threat.

  9. **/*** for me. Usual proper names and slightly (for me today) obscure words. Loved 8d for its elegant simplicity and surface reading which made me smile. Thanks to all.

  10. Very enjoyable so thanks to the Don and DT for the hints, which today I did not need. Quickie is also a pangram.

  11. A very gentle but enjoyable crossword from Giovanni and an excellent review from DT, many thanks to both. The Elkamere toughie is ridiculously easy today.

    1. well, easy for an Elkamere perhaps, i was still proud of myself for finishing. but yes another great puzzle, love the way the substitutions fit into the wordplay elegantly.

  12. ****/****. Ouch! In the nicest way. This felt like a difficult climb up Helvellyn, hard work but fantastic when you get there. 14 and 21a pointed towards the pangram, without which I would have struggled with 7d. It was all going so well until I came across 17d. I was completely stumped and had to grab the dictionary. 23a and 27 were also “bung it in moments”! 6d and 19a are my favourites today. Many thanks to Giovanni and DT for blogging it. Definitely needed the reassurance for 17d. Hope everyone has a good weekend. :-)

  13. An excellent Friday workout I thought. And a pangram… like Kath by the time I realised it was too late. 19a was my favourite clue: it appears on a fairly frequent basis but by the time it does I have forgotten the answer again and have to wait for the ‘Doh!’ moment once more.
    Oh well. Thanks to the Don and DT for the hints.

  14. Wow tough one today, at least a 4star for me. Took two sittings to finish this one with three answers that are new to me in 7d, 18d and 23d. With the Don you always learn something new! However, I thought 1d was considerably below his usual standard, What would crossword compilers do without US States, presidents and other Americana?
    Could someone explain to me why there is the underscore in 6d, can’t see what it adds to the clue? Best clue for me was 19a, clever.
    Thx to the Don and to DT for the explanation of some of the clues.
    PS Sorry forgot to say how much I enjoyed it, **** on that front.

      1. Enlighten me. I can’t see any reference to the underscore in the hint which I looked before posting the question! I can see the answer as I could when doing the puzzle but still don’t see the underscore not does Mes B which is why I politely asked!

        1. Because if you put the split up words of the answer in the place of the underscore ……The tumbler’s content is in glass that’s clear.

  15. A nice Friday puzzle. I spotted the pangram quite early which helped a bit but still learned a couple of new words along the way. 3*/3* for me.
    Thanks to Giovanni and to DT for the review.

  16. Thanks DG, a clever puzzle but too much for us today. Solved about two thirds sitting on the beach, but failed to get started again when we returned to base. Took a couple of hints and then managed to finish. It took a few explanations from you DT to explain our answers – so many thanks for your review and hints.

  17. Toughest of the week but very enjoyable nonetheless. ****/****. This required more than one sitting and I still needed hints to correct my answer to 7d. 17d and 23d were new to me. My favourite clue was 19a. 6d a close second but twice in recent puzzles knocked the edge off this. Time to walk the dogs before a trip to the food and wine event in Abbotsford. Have a good weekend especially DT without who’s help this wouldn’t have got completed.

    1. Welcome Dave M – The compiler of the back page puzzle always does the quick puzzle too (although saying that once in a blue moon, there can be an exception to this rule). Giovanni usually has a pangram in his quick puzzle but not always in the cryptic.

  18. Best crossword of the week for me – I failed to get 10a (doh!) and 7d. Some nice clues. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_bye.gif

    1. I wanted “heartbeat” for 10a, but could think of no way to spell it using only six letters!

  19. Spotting the pangram quite early helped a lot in the NE corner which was the last to yield. We found it a very pleasant puzzle to solve. It felt to have a cheery lightness to us. Hard to explain why, it just was. Favourite was 19a.
    Thanks Giovanni and DT.

  20. HELP!!!!!!! After yesterday I was feeling very happy but today has sent me right down into the Slough of Despond. Do not understand 7d what on earth is a pangram?

    1. That all the letters of the alphabet are included in the crossword. So if you see x and z you may want to think that q, k and j are there for other clues. Sorry for the quick reply…am typing on my phone. Am sure someone who’s been here a lot longer will explain it better. :-)

        1. Thank you!! Wow. Given how well you lot blog on here that’s a fantastic compliment. :-) :-):-) I’ll now go back to being slightly more mundane and finish our daughters homework about the stone age and worry about cooking Sunday lunch. That’s not as random as it sounds.

      1. Thank you, I looked pangram up in dictionary but still did not understand significance until I saw your comment. Perfect answer. Loved this forum and the way help is always available.

          1. Thank you I am still very much a NEWBY will have a comprehensive look at FAQ before I ask any more question – smacked pandy.

  21. Wow! Many congrats to those of you who found it easy – it was one long, hard slog for me. Thank goodness the advert at the side of the grid had a light-coloured background – it’s now covered in scribbles!
    I think in future I shall look upon Giovanni days in the same way that Brian views Ray T days http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

  22. Loved the tough struggle.
    For me, **** difficulty.
    Last in 19a and 7d
    Many thanks Giovanni and DTfor the review

  23. I have never heard of Bel Canto before, so I clicked on the video and love the ditty that Pavarotti sings at the 6 minute mark. Please tell me what it is! Love the blog, loved today’s crossword too.

    1. You’ve changed your alias (no longer a young cricketer?) so your comment needed moderation. Both aliases should now work.

  24. Another day of work interrupting play, but it’s early evening here and I finished before dinner. Saw it was a pangram early on, and the purists among us may find this abhorrent and akin to writing out anagram fodder on paper (which I also do), but I write each of the more unusual letters down as I insert them in an answer so I know at a glance what I’m still looking for. I did finish without hints, though 17D, 5A and 7D put up a fight. The only clue I thought was a bit off was 30A. Otherwise very enjoyable. Thanks to Giovanni and to DT for the review.

    On to the Toughie!

  25. Didn’t quite finish this before beddy-byes last night, and stumped by the NE corner this morning. I needed a couple of DT’s hints to fill the grid, so have to rate this 4* (and the same for enjoyment). Lots of good clues, 19a being my pick. Thanks to Giovanni, and to DT.

  26. How to make a fairly easy one harder by shoving in 5 obscure words. Even toughies dont have that many ! 6d – perhaps some knew the word, but this is NOT GK crossie. And the worst is the clue is one of worst I ever seen and even the explanation/hint sheds no further light. Why try to confuse ?
    Rest easy-ish 1* difficulty > 4* cos of the above

Comments are closed.