DT 27635 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

DT 27635

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27635

Hints and tips by Deep Threat

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

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

Good morning from South Staffs on a mild morning with the sun breaking through th early mist.

A fairly typical Friday puzzle from Giovanni this morning. Understanding the wordplay in 22d, my last one in, almost pushed me into *** time, hence the borderline marking.

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           Decrepit folk making pots (6)
CROCKS – Double definition: worn-out people (or cars); and earthenware pots.

5a           New protection for the thing brought back, withdrawn (8)
RETICENT – A word describing something new, or which happened not long ago, wrapped around the reversal (brought back) of a pronoun meaning ‘the thing’.

9a           Arrogant film star, ‘pet’ with no fans (4-9)
SELF-IMPORTANT – Anagram (fans) of FILM STAR PET and NO.

10a         Understand prisoner’s genuine (8)
CONSTRUE – One of the usual prisoners, with the ‘s from the clue, followed by ‘genuine’.

11a         It sounds like public vehicle will hurry along (6)
BUSTLE – This is a homophone (sounds like) of a variety of public transport followed by the contracted form of ‘will’, as in ‘I’ll be back’.

12a         Furious ambassador confronts an old rocker (6)
HEATED – The initials of the title given to ambassadors followed by A (indicated by AN in the clue) and a 1950s rocker.

14a         Yells about backward-looking union — they deny opportunities for some of the players (8)
SHUTOUTS – Reverse the initials of Trade Union and put the result inside a word for ‘yells’, giving a word for games where one side fails to score.

16a         Street entertainer, a big fellow (8)
STRAPPER – The abbreviation for street, followed by an ‘entertainer’ who delivers what the BRB calls ‘a rhythmic monologue over a musical background’.

19a         Maiden is overwhelmed by river, resulting in this? (6)
DEMISE The cricket scorecard abbreviation for Maiden, and IS (from the clue), placed inside a Scottish or Welsh river, giving us the result of that happening.

21a         One American state or another lacking a river (6)
KANSAS – Remove A (from the clue) and River from the beginning of the name of an American state.

23a         Naughty man (or ‘cad’) offers spice (8)
CARDAMON – Anagram (naughty) of MAN OR CAD.

25a         Mob talker sure excited folk looking to make mischief (13)
TROUBLE MAKERS – Anagram (excited) of MOB TALKER SURE.

26a         Feeling ecstatic, one assigned to part of hospital (8)
SENTIENT – A rather 1960s word for ecstatic, or in an altered state, followed by the Roman numeral for one, and the initials of a hospital department often seen in crosswords.

27a         Teresa cooked apples (6)
EATERS – Anagram (cooked) of TERESA – but she wouldn’t have cooked these.


2d           Bring back shop, needing engineers first (7)
RESTORE – The initials of a regiment of engineers followed by a shop.

3d           Does trade reportedly in these small rooms (5)
CELLS – Small rooms for prisoners or monks, which sound like (reportedly) what a trader does.

4d           Animated little man’s given external support during ride (7,2)
STIRRED UP – A short form of a man’s name inside what supports your foot when you’re riding a horse.

5d           Rule with rod of iron concerning journalists (7)
REPRESS – The Latin term for about or concerning, followed by the generic word for journalists.

6d           Pound pocketed by uncouth robber (5)
THROB – Hidden in (pocketed by) the clue.

7d           Girl in cold and desolate area to north where kids are kept in (9)
CLASSROOM – Another word for ‘girl’ placed between Cold and the reversal (to the north, in a Down clue) of a word for a wild and desolate area, giving the place where children are confined during school hours.

8d           Phone school up — not a lengthy communication (7)
NOTELET – Start with an abbreviation for telephone followed by the usual public school, then reverse the lot (up).

13d         Delight in aircraft, say (9)
TRANSPORT – … or train, bus or taxi!
ARVE Error: need id and provider

15d         Endeavour to make provision for someone who is late? (9)
UNDERTAKE – Cryptic definition of the act of looking after someone who is late, as in:-

Slartibartfast: Come. Come now or you will be late.
Arthur: Late? What for?
Slartibartfast: What is your name, human?
Arthur: Dent. Arthur Dent.
Slartibartfast: Late as in the late Dentarthurdent. It’s a sort of threat, you see. I’ve never been terribly good at them myself but I’m told they can be terribly effective.
(The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy)

17d         Little piggy swallowing sparkling drink and hot snack (7)
TOASTIE – One of th five little piggies, with an Italian sparkling wine inside.

18d         One church among others with most in the collection plate? (7)
RICHEST – The Roma numeral for one and an abbreviation for church, inside a word for ‘the others’.

20d         Boys collecting pence, needing men who may give financial support? (7)
SPONSOR Pence inside another word for boys, followed by the military abbreviation for men who are not officers.

22d         Fur OK for use but not correct for top people (5)
SABLE – Start with a word meaning ‘OK for use’, then remove the letter which is used to denote correct upper-class behaviour in a work by Nancy Mitford.

24d         Expert departs within a short time (5)
ADEPT – A shortened form of ‘departs’ inside A (from the clue) and Time.

The Quick Crossword pun CORE + SICKEN = CORSICAN

62 comments on “DT 27635

  1. 1*/2*. I found this surprisingly easy and uninspiring today. Thanks to the setter and to DT.

  2. You are very welcome today DT. I have really struggled on this one whereas I normally complete Giovannis’ puzzles in a reasonable time. Only 3 clues on my first pass. Well, here goes

  3. I enjoyed it – I missed the anagram for 9a and but hey-ho you can’t get them all!

    Onwards and upward, roll on Saturday!

  4. Thanks to DT for the explanation of the wordplay for 22d. Beautiful day in E Devon. Thx to setter for 3* enjoyment.

  5. Enjoyed this. ***/***. Thanks Giovanni and DT. I too missed 9a anagram but solved it nevertheless. East side went in before West. Needed parsing for 22d. 15d fav. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

  6. A **/*** today as I thought it was pretty straightforward with quite a few old chestnuts like 21A and 13D but amusing enough -liked 15D-thanks DT for the pics and the Arthur Dent obit !

  7. Brilliant crossword. Pleasantly tricky in parts, devilish in others. Many thanks to Giovanni and DT (although no hints needed today!)

  8. Another very enjoyable puzzle for me. Again, a couple of longer anagrams were very helpful in getting me launched. I had to work hard to figure out the wordplay in one or two (26a and 5a for example). And now, with some trepidation, the toughie . . . . . . .

  9. Always seem to be a few definitions in Giovanni puzzles that don’t ‘sit right’ with me but most of this was very enjoyable.
    14a was a bung in (back to sport again!) and I haven’t heard 16a used as a noun before.
    17d is my runaway favourite.
    Many thanks to Giovanni for the work-out and to DT – particularly for the parsing of 22d. (I’d got reduced to thinking about ‘elbas’ on the table!).

    By the way, DT, I think you’ve got a superfluous ‘s’ in the answer for 20d.

  10. I found this one quite straightforward – but I did have to ponder over several of the word plays to understand why the word I had bunged in made sense!


  11. Nice puzzle but rather let down by the wordplay in 22d in my opinion.
    Loved 21a, v clever and also 7d.
    Enjoyable apart from the above.
    Thanks to the Master (when is the book out?) and to DT for explaining 22d.

  12. Look what’s just arrived! I’ll be reviewing it for BD in a few days.

    Perhaps the author would like to donate a couple for the monthly prize contests.

    1. Good Mr T! — the publisher is doing his job! I won’t give away any copies, but the website might be able to ask for a deal (free or otherwise) with the publisher. Enjoy!

        1. I don’t know who Mr Moorey is but good for Mr Mcneill! Must try harder with MPP’s
          My 2000 copy of the Chambers Crossword Dictionary has seen better days, to put it mildly. All the “Z”‘s have disintegrated and the rest of it is stuck together with sellotape.

  13. Thank you DG. It seems that I may be alone in finding this harder than yesterday’s Ray T. 18d was not my favourite clue and I needed the hint to complete. Thanks DT for your review and hints – in particular 18d http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

  14. Greetings from sunny (24 deg) Portugal where I am slightly out of my crossword rhythm. I am “acclimatising” before a conference that starts on sunday. Nonetheless managed today’s fairly straightforward puzzle in bits and pieces. Thank you DT for the parsing of 22d (fur); I was making things far more complicated than they needed to be. I found I was doing this for some of the other clues as well, e.g. 1a, 9a, 6d – I’ll blame it on the sun, though no doubt it is what Giovanni intended. Last one in was 19a (again, I was first looking for a 5-letter river).

    I have also ordered my new edition (well a first edition for me), it should be waiting for me when i get home next wednesday

    Many thanks Giovanni and DT for review

  15. Well, I got it finished without help, but have to admit a few were bunged in without understanding.
    Thx for the explanations DT.
    Had to get OH to explain 14a and 17d took me an age for no good reason…and I’m always forgetting OR for men ( sometimes vice versa)

    Otherwise was quite good fun!

    1. I was beginning to think I was in a minority of one on this one today, so I was mighty pleased to read your comment!

  16. Well, this was a total disaster today. Just not on this setters wavelength at all, and even with explanations, it wasn’t very satisfying. Even the spice in 23a has an ‘m’ at the end in our dictionary instead of an ‘n’, and as for ”strapper’, words fail me. So it’s a****/* today I’m afraid, Still on the bright side, there’s always tomorrow. Thank you DT, without whom we would have been totally lost, and a thank you to the setter.

        1. Nce gravatar. I hope it is intentional. Saint Sharon and I are going to see the poppies at the tower on Monday. ( Early solve early blog )

          1. Miffypops, it’s stunning and heartbreaking. I don’t use those adjectives lightly. I’m from a military family and we don’t cry at the drop of a hat. Ever. Paul Cummins has created something so evocative I wept. And then needed a cuddle. I hope you and the brilliant Saint Sharon ‘enjoy’…because here I am lost for words. :-)

  17. Straightforward for me. I did think it was lacking the Giovanni characteristics and a bit flat overall. On the other hand, reading the above comments, maybe I was just on wavelength. 15D and 19 across were nice, though. thanks to the setter and to DT.

  18. Apart from putting VENTED in for 12a… well, it made sense to me at the time; this was reasonably gentle for a Friday crossword I thought. 17d was my favourite clue and the answer to 16a was to my mind a very ‘clunky’ word!
    Thanks to Giovanni and DT for the revue.

  19. Didn’t think much of 16a – it clearly suggests that a rapper is an entertainer! Wilful misdirection on a grand scale IMO :lol:

    Otherwise ta to Giovanni and DT

  20. Like some others this wasn’t very entertaining and quite tricky for me in parts. Thanks to DT for the review which helped enormously with some of my bung ins. Halloween today will bring a load of little monsters to feed sweets – the outfits always amaze me especially the ones worn by the attending parents.

  21. Everything except the crossword is out to get me today. I thought it was fairly straightforward for a Friday so 2* difficulty and 3* for enjoyment.
    Needless to say I’ve never heard of 14a and BRB has it as two words.
    I got 9a from the checking letters and only realised that it was an anagram afterwards.
    I liked 11 and 21a. My favourite was 17d.
    Thanks to Giovanni and Deep Threat.

    1. Oh dear – is it the decorating that’s giving you grief?

      If you want to stay on a crossword ‘high’ I would recommend that you don’t go anywhere near today’s Toughie. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_negative.gif

        1. So I noticed – that really worries me. I only got 4 before being reduced to looking at the clues – and even then I had to reveal some of the answers! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-phew.gif

      1. I never go anywhere near a Friday Toughie. A very long time ago there was a Micawber on a Friday which someone (gazza, I think) said was not only good fun but doable. I learnt a new word – quiddity – I’ve remembered it although have yet to find a use for it in day to day conversation!
        As for decorating – done! Well, the kitchen is and just about to embark on utility room -oh dear! Grief was caused by trying to tax a car – don’t ask!
        Everyone here this weekend – elder Pet Lamb’s birthday is Bonfire Night – typical – very noisy.
        Do hope that the Paris weekend goes according to plan – let us know tomorrow. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

        1. Quiddity…Latin base, ‘what it is’? I am having flash backs to Latin in second year. I hated Latin.
          Well done on the decorating and I won’t ask about the car tax. Though I may when ours are due!
          Kath I hope you have a lovely weekend. :-) *Edit*…just seen your reply. I love family weekends no matter who goes where. We generally invade my mothers.

      1. Thank you – yes, I’m OK. More bureaucratic loopies but elder Pet Lamb and her lovely partner now home for weekend to celebrate her birthday – they always make everything fine! Younger Lamb coming tomorrow – with a hangover I suspect – lots of mollycoddling about to be needed.

  22. Only had a brief window to do this in between leaf clearing and a few hands of Bridge. Really enjoyed this and finished it without too much angst. Now off to exercise the body after exercising the mind. Thanks for the review and for the interesting comments above. http://bigdave44.com/wo-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_bye.gif

  23. I found this very easy for a Friday but still plenty of fun. Some good long anagrams too, which I always enjoy.
    Much like DT my only hold up was understanding the wordplay for 22d.
    Thanks to both Giovanni and DT.
    1.5*/3* for me today.

  24. Needed help today , didn’t help by putting sales in for 3d
    (rooms) and knock on effect in that quadrant , also missed throb; to many taxi rides for the children today .thats my excuse still good entertainment

  25. Thanks to Giovanni and to Deep Threat for the review and hints. A good puzzle, very enjoyable, no obscure words, very unusual. I struggled badly with this and needed the hints for 19&26a. Favourite was 8d. Was 3*/3* for me.

  26. DT, I must admit that I am not sure how to handle the word “ecstatic” in 26a, but I’m not sure that your hint that it defines the first four letters of the answer is correct. I got the answer by reading the clue as saying that “one” (1) was “assigned” (i.e despatched to) the usual hospital department. But, using my logic, I still don’t know how to deal with “ecstatic” – unless the definition is “feeling ecstatic”. But my dictionary says that the answer means simply “feeling” in the sense of “emotion”. What do you think?

    1. I agree with DT – the definition is feeling as an adjective and the wordplay is SENT as an adjective (ecstatic) + I (one) and ENT (part of hospital).

      1. I do, too. I remember it from my youth. Beat Generation expression. Jazz clubs too. And then there’s that lovely Sam Cooke song, You Send Me.

  27. ****/***.
    I found this one a slog. Quite a few bung it in Miffypops style, 22d was a complete guess as I failed v parse the clue at all and I needed hints for 4 and 17d. It went up to 3* enjoyment as there was a few delicious anagrams that meant I could play with my best pencils and rubbers/erasers.
    Thanks to Giovanni and to DT for blogging. :-)
    I hope everyone enjoys their weekend.
    Jane…have you had a G & T yet? Tomorrow’s the big day. Am really quite excited for you.:-)

    1. Well………. I’ve run out of G! Must dash out tomorrow and get some – maybe a bottle of fizz as well? Happy to share if you and Kath are free. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

      1. Absolutely! Your daughter will be getting engaged on the same day as my youngish daughters birthday!
        Let’s hope we can get to a Sloggers and Betters meet in the future. I may not partake in the crossword challenge but I’ll happily get the Champagne in. :-)

          1. Oh my goodness! How weird but blo*dy fantastic.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif Can’t wait to hear how it goes tomorrow. I’ve just finished wrapping presents and it’s time for a glass of wine that the other half bought and to try the Toughie!

      2. You’ll definitely need some G and some fizz – I can’t wait to hear about it either. Can’t join you as we have a houseful here but will be thinking of you and wishing everyone all the best. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

  28. Having decided to give up on Friday’s toughie, I folded my newspaper only to find out that I had a whole empty back page waiting for me. Much more enjoyable puzzle from Giovanni although I had to check a few answers to make sure they were right. And a good thing too. I had cracks for 1a. Thinking of crackpots I suppose. Thanks to Giovanni and Deep Threat for the review.

  29. Got put off with 23a cardamon and threw it away. I’ve only ever seen it written as cardamom, and when I went to Wikipedia I see it comes from the Latin cardamomum. Decided that if that word wasn’t spelt properly there was no point in continuing.

    1. Welcome to the blog Mal

      The BRB (Chambers) is a better source of how a word is spelt than Wikipedia. It gives cardamom and cardamum as well as cardamon.

Comments are closed.