DT 27702 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

DT 27702

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27702

Hints and tips by Gazza

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Miffypops is otherwise engaged this morning so he and I have done a swap and he’ll be here tomorrow. We have a fairly typical, and fairly gentle, puzzle from Rufus today. More than with any other setter I have difficulty in deciding exactly what to underline in some of Rufus’s clues – for example is 5a a double definition or a cryptic definition? I’ve plumped for the latter but you can decide for yourself. Do let us know how you got on and what you thought of it.

If you click on any of the areas showing ‘Click here!’ you’ll see the actual answer so only do that as a last resort.

Across Clues

1a It may be the thing required (7)
ARTICLE – it may be ‘the’ (or ‘a’ or ‘an’).

5a He swears he’s a soldier (7)
TROOPER – proverbially this soldier is foul-mouthed.

9a Goat-like figure heads a list of animals (5)
FAUNA – a figure from Roman mythology which is half-man half-goat precedes A.

10a Not a single female will go out in this outfit (9)
TROUSSEAU – … because she’ll be married by the time she puts it on.

11a Give up using catapult — i.e. playing around (10)
CAPITULATE – an anagram (playing around) of CATAPULT I.E.

12a High-class sort of shop (4)
POSH – an anagram (sort) of SHOP.

14a We need to find our own fare for these holidays (4-8)
SELF-CATERING – fare here means meals. This is a typical Rufus cryptic definition which doesn’t seem very cryptic at all if you get the correct meaning of fare on first reading. However, if you are tricked into thinking of fare as meaning transport costs then it really is a cryptic clue.

18a Turbulent masses resent another property valuation (12)
REASSESSMENT – an anagram (turbulent) of MASSES RESENT.

21a Lazy, appearing backward in fielding (4)
IDLE – the clue spells it out for us – the answer appears backwards.

22a Slump causing gloom (10)
DEPRESSION – double definition – the first a reduction in economic activity and prosperity.

25a Starting place for the three-legged race? (4,2,3)
ISLE OF MAN – cryptic definition of the island whose people (race) use a triskelion (three-legged figure) as their symbol.

26a Something cast in gold — the last word in France (5)
ADIEU – insert something that’s cast or thrown (in a gambling or board game, for example) into the chemical symbol for gold. Jacta est alea, as Caesar said when he crossed the Rubicon.

27a Board carriage herd aren’t in (7)
ENTRAIN – an anagram (herd, in the sense of bring to order) of AREN’T IN.

28a Increase in general disorder (7)
ENLARGE – anagram (in … disorder) of GENERAL.

Down Clues

1d Pretend to influence (6)
AFFECT – double definition, the first a verb to pretend or feign.

2d A superior suit (6)
TRUMPS – cryptic definition. In trick-taking card games such as bridge or whist this is the current top suit.

3d Plan to recycle liqueur (10)
CHARTREUSE – charade of a plan or map and a verb to recycle.

4d Former tax reduced by a pound — celebrate (5)
EXTOL – a prefix meaning former is followed by the tax levied to use a bridge or road, for example, without one of the letters used to mean a pound sterling.

5d Where to see the beginning — and end — of the rainbow? (5,4)
TROUT FARM – rainbow here is a type of fish which can be mass-produced for food.

6d Give marching orders to us to put out (4)
OUST – when I wrote in this answer I thought this was a hidden word but on writing the review I see that doesn’t quite work and it’s actually an anagram (put out) of US TO.

7d Capital turn of a pierrot (8)
PRETORIA – an anagram (turn) of A PIERROT.

8d It aids digestion if having hard time (8)
ROUGHAGE – charade of an adjective meaning hard or arduous and a period of time.

13d Racketeers’ go-between? (6,4)
TENNIS BALL – what whizzes back and forth across the net.

15d She parts company with an angler (9)
FISHERMAN – SHE is inserted in (parts) a company and that’s followed by AN.

16d Take care — if it changed, it’s a trick (8)
ARTIFICE – an anagram (changed) of CARE IF IT.

17d Don’t stand round showing what a bad crack will do (4,4)
FALL FLAT – crack here is a joke or gag. Bring together the opposite of a verb to remain standing and the opposite of round (in the description of a stomach, for example).

19d Old court official, specifically one over the Queen (6)
VIZIER – a government official at various old Middle Eastern courts comes from the standard abbreviation of the Latin word videlicet (meaning specifically or namely) and the Roman numeral for one followed by (over, in a down clue) the regnal cipher of our Queen.

20d Guarantee Rex is about to succeed? Quite the opposite (6)
ENSURE – quite the opposite means that R(ex) is not outside (about) the verb to succeed or follow but inside it.

23d Limit  the area for stock (5)
RANGE – double definition, the first a limit or scope.

24d Served up in Norway, osprey is a source of protein (4)
SOYA – hidden (in) and reversed (served up, in a down clue).

The clue I liked best was 15d. How about you?

Today’s Quickie Pun: SIGHED + AFFECT = SIDE EFFECT


66 comments on “DT 27702

  1. Not a great challenge presented to us today but enjoyable nonetheless. I would agree with Gazza’s rating.I liked 15A as it is a good smiler. Thanks to Gazza for the review.

  2. I agree with 2* (maybe plus a little bit) for difficulty and 3* for enjoyment.
    A few things that I didn’t know held me up – I’ve never heard of 19d, didn’t know the 9a beastie from Roman mythology although the answer was obvious, and didn’t know the IOM symbol – have to confess that I thought it was something to do with races and assumed they were in three bits. Oh dear – the first one of the week! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_redface.gif
    Managed to start off with FENCE for 23d which didn’t help much with 22a until I realised what I’d done.
    Apart from those I didn’t have too much trouble today – a rarity for a Monday.
    I liked 5 and 14a and 5d (poor trout). My favourite, and my last answer, was 13d.
    Thanks to Rufus and to gazza.
    Stuff to do now – then Mr Rookie later on.

    1. Hi Kath – I was with you on the ‘fence’ until I realised that I couldn’t make ‘deflation’ fit into 22a! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_wacko.gifhttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_wacko.gif

  3. Well – there I was, carefully avoiding ‘pens & circles’ so as not to incur Mr. Pops’ wrath, only to discover that it’s my ‘friend in need’ – Gazza doing the review! Had I known that from the outset I just might have spelled 18a correctly the first time. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif
    Plenty to smile about – 13&17d in particular – but favourite goes to 3d, quite perfect.
    Many thanks to Rufus for a great start to a cold Monday morning and to Gazza – particularly for explaining the parsing of 20d!
    2*/3.5* for me.

      1. Thank you, Hanni. Glad you like it because it’s going to be around for a long time – I doubt that either BD or No.1 daughter would want to go through all that again! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

        I see that Mr. Pops has given you a black mark – do you think he did it in ink or pencil? http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_wink.gif

  4. Great Monday puzzle which took a little longer than usual. Some lovely clues and some that i thought were a bit of a stretch. I didn’t know the goat-like figure, and I hadn’t thought of the answer in 9a as a list before, but the checking letters made it clear. I thought use of “starting place” (25a), “go-between” (13a) and “Don’t stand round” was a bit weak and might well 17d.

    But I really liked 1a (it may be the..), 15d (she parts company with an..) and my favourite clue, which made my day, was 5d (beginning and end of a rainbow). I also thought “herd” was an interesting anagram indicator. I did wonder whether “Take” in 16d might be superfluous, but it fits in the cryptic instructions

    Many thanks Rufus and thank you Gazza for swapping with miffypops

  5. A lovely puzzle I thought with a good mixture of clues. 5d excellent and went for “fence” at 23d initially. Many thanks Rufus for an enjoyable challenge and thank you Gazza for your review and hints. I must confess to thinking that 5a was a double definition, but bow to your greater knowledge Gazza !

  6. Easier than of late but still very enjoyable, my favourite being 5d which kept me guessing for a short while then made me laugh when I saw the end of the rainbow appearing before my very eyes. 1*/ 4* and many thanks to Gazza and the setter.

  7. One or two tricky ones – 9a for instance – for one not familiar with the classics, but many excellent clues. 5, 13, and 17d not to mention 8d (please), brought a smile to my face.
    **/***+ for me today.
    Thanks to settee and Gazza.

    1. I didn’t know that Rufus was a settee but, on reflection, I suppose you can sit back and relax with him. :D

  8. The usual offering from Rufus – just enough to get the grey matter ticking over but not enough to cause headaches. 3D was my favourite clue today, absolutely excellent.

  9. **/***

    Bonjour a tous.

    Hmm a French feel to today’s crossword. Hopefully Jean-Luc and Framboise enjoy it. I certainly did.

    13d caused me a bit of a hold up as I was thinking it was a play on ‘Middle man’. Like Kath I wondered about tethering peoples legs together for 25a and it wasn’t till I had some checkers that it became obvious.

    All in all fine fun for a Monday morning.
    Many thanks to Rufus and to Gazza for taking on blogging responsibilities. I used a pencil throughout this crossword, quite happily. A shiny new red one.

    I shall now go and de-snow another car. Is there a de-snowing emoticon? Can you de-snow things?

        1. No thanks, Hanni – I can look out at the snow-covered mountains of Snowdonia from my window and that suits me just fine!

          1. Mmmm I like it. Pre-child type things and other half type ‘thing”, I spent most of my career in London. I’m a country girl and it was slowly driving me insane not being able to see hills/water every day. The Thames didn’t count. How is daughter no. 2?

            1. She’s currently tearing her hair out over the ‘I’s and ‘T’s that still need to be dotted and crossed re: the house purchase. Actually, I’m rather glad she’s a fair few miles away at the moment!

              How’s your ‘selective deafness’ technique coming along?

              1. Oh blimey. I do feel for her. It’s been a while but I remember the pitfalls of the process.

                Selective deafness does not work. Even if I don’t pay attention I now know every shot, bunker and breakfast consumed. Which he rang to tell me about anyway. In detail. Perhaps my eardrums will spontaneously rupture. And him and the other geniuses have now started up again on their idea of personal hovercraft as a means of transport in snow. It won’t end well.

                1. I’m trying to come up with something positive………… but everything I’ve thought of so far ends up with OH being incapacitated in some way and you having to play nursemaid (along with everything else) and sit at his bedside listening to endless tales of golf shots he made, missed or now can’t attempt.
                  How about we relocate the ‘corner’ to Anglesey for a while? http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

  10. As usual some very clever clues but even at silly o clock it was over too soon. 5d made me smile. Thanks to Gazza and thanks to Rufus. A black mark for Hanni.

      1. So they did and so we celebrated in one of the best Rugby Clubs I have ever attended. I may mention this tomorrow.

  11. I agree with Gazza for a 2*/3* for this gentle and enjoyable solve. French helped me for 19d as I knew vizir as a Middle-Eastern court official. We also use viz … My favourite clues were 3d – of course – and 13a which was really funnny. So thank you Rufus for a great start of the week and for Gazza for his entertaining review.

  12. I thought it quite difficult for a Monday, a ***/*** for me. like several others fell at the23 rd fence, which didn’t help for a while, liked the surface reading of 15D and 9A which slowed me down until Mr Tumnus appeared,Thanks Gazza for the pics, not heard of the word ‘triskelion ’21A but do remember the motto which is just as obscure, because I used to have it on my motorcycle helmet-Quocunque Jeceris Stabit-so there!.

  13. I was very interested in the explanation of 19d – I put the crossing letters into my Wordsearch program and it was either the answer or ‘tinier’ – no problem!

    I make it seven anagrams – just my level of puzzle – luvverly!!

    Onward and upward – everything is well with the world! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

  14. Nous sommes d’accord avec Gazza. Gentle but very enjoyable and amusing. One half of Paso Doble in her excitement often fills in the correct answer in the wrong place on the grid. Out with the tippex, solution inserted properly, making the back page of the Telegraph looking like an Alpine ordnance survey map!

  15. Didn’t think it was all that much of a gentle Monday puzzle, but was enjoyable once we managed to put a couple of answers in with the help of the hints. I wanted the goat like figure to be Pan, but it just didn’t fit. I’ve never heard of 19 down, and it’s no good saying that I’ll remember it because I know I wont. ***/*** for us today. Thank you to the Monday setter and to Gazza.

  16. Normal Monday service is resumed – mostly very simple (eg 5a, 15d) and a couple that needed a bit of thought. I too toyed with fence and I liked the misdirection in 5d.
    I did briefly wonder if it was Rufus as he rarely uses hidden word clues and there were two here (not three as I, like Gazza, first thought) and he doesn’t often use letter deletion (4d) either. The rest seems pretty typical though.

  17. Iznogoud, Iznogoud.
    Can’t believe I didn’t get 19d. It’s so much part of our culture. The grand vizier Iznogoud wanted to be caliph instead of the caliph. Great comic.
    The rest fell in quite nicely.
    No real difficulty and I quite like those “sous-entendu” clues such as 5d, 14a and 13d.
    Thanks to Gazza and comfy Rufus.

      1. Hello Framboise,
        I know, it’s pathetic for 19d. My excuse is that I was looking for a law court clerk. As you know we have very very little royalty left in France.
        Look forward to seeing at the end of Feb. Give my regards to Mr Sudoku and all your extended family.

  18. Thanks to Rufus and to Gazza for the review and hints. I enjoyed this, but found it very tricky. I needed the hints for 17,19&20d to finish. Favourite was 15d. Last in was 22a. Was 3*/3* for me.

  19. I started off thinking I was in trouble – not an easy start. But then as happens, I managed to get some solved and then it collapsed like a house of cards as the checking letters helped immensely. So I would agree 2* for difficulty and 4* for enjoyment..

  20. 2.5*/4*. Thank you Rufus and Gazza for a great start to the week. Some very good clues, especially 10a & 5d. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif

  21. I agree a nice gentle start to the week. The only one i struggled to understand was 20d. I could see the answer but the clue was beyond me to comprehend. Many Thx to Gazza for the explanation. Best clue for me was 25a, made me smile anyway.
    Today’s offerng has put me in a good mood but it’s the Parish Council meeting tonight so I don’t suppose it will last! Oh well it’s good for the soul.
    Thx to all.

    1. At your Parish Council meeting suggest a larger than life statue of yourself Brian to be erected on the village green and to be funded by public subscription. I will throw a ton at it to get it started. Will anybody else contribute?

  22. Viz caught me out and having no word search , eventually looked at a huge comic face, problem solved . Enjoyed 3 and 5d , why wouldn’t I , although I have not drank/sipped said liqueur for ages prefer a Benedictine.

  23. Thanks Rufus for another great puzzle, no problems today.
    Fave 13d with honourable mention to 5d.
    Thanks Gazza for your review and for filling in for M’pops.

    1. Ah – good to ‘see’ you Merusa – I was just beginning to wonder where you’d got to.
      I finally had a reply from Poppy – she, and all of them, are OK but have had a difficult time lately. She says that she hopes to be back commenting on the blog in a couple off weeks and that she’s hoping to get to the 31st January Blog Birthday Bash so I’ll report back to you after that.
      I’ve just caught the blasted spell-checky-thingy trying to call you Medusa again but I was too quick for him this time so he was thwarted! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

      1. So glad you heard from Poppy, though sorry she has been having a difficult time. Give her my very, very best.
        Oh dear, Medusa! Perhaps I should change my alias but this one is made up of the first two letters of deeply beloved Labradors and I hate to change!
        Hope all is well with you and your Mum is doing as well as can be expected.

        1. No – don’t change your alias – I remember where it came from. All is OK here and Mum is fine, thank you – touch wood a few times . . .

  24. **/****. I really enjoyed this puzzle. 3, 13, 17 & 19d were top drawer for me. Thanks to the setter for an enjoyable start to the week and Gazza for the review which I didn’t need today.

  25. Sorry, as newcomers we realise that we forgot to thank Rufus and Gazza for making today’s crossword so enjoyable.

    1. You’ve changed the spelling of your alias which put your comment into moderation. I’ve edited your ‘Paso’ back to ‘Pasa’ which I assume is what you intended.

  26. Today’s puzzle fell before breakfast even got started. The speed at which I reach for the crossword in the morning these days might betray something of an addiction…

    I didn’t know the IOM symbol either, and like Kath assumed the races might have three legs. Happy to have learned something.

    I’m better at drinking alcohol that knowing about it. Mr K informed me that 3d is a colour, but neither of us had heard of the liqueur. We have mostly been drinking wine and Scotch (not together – yick!) http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif.

    The right answer to 5d jumped out at me quickly once the checkers were in. I summarily dismissed it as a silly, sat starting for rather a while and then had to kick myself.

    19d was another bit of new knowledge, but didn’t have any trouble figuring it out from the wordplay.

    All in all a most pleasant pre-breakfast appetiser, for which thanks go to Rufus. Many thanks also to Gazza for saving me having to look elsewhere for triskelions and things.

  27. Oh dear I seem to be in a minority today but I was completely on the wrong wavelength although I did in fact manage to battle through but without parsing several answers – e.g. 25a, 27a, 15d and 19d. 13d amused when the penny finally dropped. Thanks Rufus and Gazza. ***/**. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_scratch.gif

  28. Nice straight forward start to the week I agree with Gazza **/*** NW Corner was a little troublesome. Thanks to Gazza and the “Sofa” ;-)

  29. A Rufus crossword on a Monday; what a nice way to start the week!
    No problems apart from a D instead of an S in 20d…. laziness lives….
    Favourite clue was 13d.
    Many thanks to Rufus and Gazza for the revue.

  30. 2*/2* is about right. I completed (xmt 18a) well within 1* time; although 18a was obvious, it didn’t fit with “trout lake” which l had down for 5d. Not really convinced by that clue, in that my answer fitted it just as well, and it was only the crosser that decided matters. Still, 26a was good. VMTs to Rufus, and to Gazza.

  31. Looked harder at first sight than it turned out to be – aided by plenty of anagrams, which always get the grid going. 5d and 12d stood out for me and both brought a smile. 2*/3* for me. Thanks to Rufus for the challenge and Gazza for taking the time

  32. I look forward to relaxing over a crossword at the end of the working day. Today didn’t disappoint, there were enough slightly tricky clues to keep it interesting, such as 5d , 13d, 17d and 25a.I dredged 19 from the depths of memory eventually.Thanks Rufus and Gazza.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

  33. Very late getting round to this today, as I will be tomorrow. Rating 2*/4*. Not too taxing but great fun as always on a Monday.

    Lots of possible favourites with 3d getting my vote just ahead of 25a, 8d & 15d.

    Many thanks to Rufus and to Gazza.

  34. Thanks very much to the Seat of Wisdom and to Gazza for standing in. I enjoyed every one of these, especially 5d, 13d and 26a. Thanks!

  35. I finished this one apart from 19d which I thought was totally unfair. Unless you knew the abbreviated form of a Latin word for “specifically” or the old court official you’d no chance.

    I also need the explanations to a few other I’d solved but couldn’t explain, so many thanks to Gazza!

Comments are closed.