DT 27737 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27737 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27737 (Hints)

Big Dave’s Saturday Crossword Club

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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    Extra lavish meal is customary (10)
An extra in cricket followed by a lavish meal

9a    Good-looking girl fit to seduce the Italian with scanty clothing (10)
A four-letter word for a good-looking girl followed by an adjective meaning fit or competent around the Italian definite article gives the alternative spelling of word meaning the state of being in scanty clothing

18a    Round of applause for every managing body giving signal for action (12)
A round of applause followed by a three-letter word meaning “for every” and the managing body of a company

21a    Those hearing poet keeping one in church (8)
The surname of a British-born poet around (keeping … in) I (one) and followed by the Church of England

22a    Book regularly produced answer in reverse (6)
A(nswer) inside a verb meaning to reverse or invalidate

24a    Bill the schoolmaster (4)
two definitions – the bill of a bird and a slang word for a schoolmaster

26a    Yet  later in the day (4)
Two definitions – the second being a poetic would for a period of time that is later in the day

27a    At home son meets pressure, causing rebellion (10)
the two-letter usual suspect for at home followed by S(on) and some pressure or importance


1d    Silly walk makes wife go off (6)
W(ife) followed by a verb meaning to go off or become rotten

2d    Request to confess providing drugs (6)
Split as (2,4) this could be a request to confess or turn informer

3d    Farmer has accident under blade of plough (12)
This tenant farmer who gives a part of each crop as rent is derived by putting an accident after (under in a down clue) the blade of a plough

5d    Charge a liberal group of diplomats (10)
The A from the clue and L(iberal) followed by a group of diplomats

11d    Try becoming popular on social media — it’s agonising (5-7)
A verb meaning to try in court followed by a word meaning becoming popular on social media, particularly Twitter

14d    Breaking resistance getting into trendy group (10)
R(esistance) inside a two-letter word meaning trendy and a small group of people formed of dissenting members of a larger group

16d    One of S Coe’s rivals breathed heavily not finishing disorderly race (8)
The initial and surname of one of S(ebastian) Coe’s rivals followed by most of (not finishing) a verb meaning breathed heavily

19d    One’s carried  part of song (6)
Two definitions – the second being a refrain or part of a song

23d    Boyfriend‘s spoken of Cockney area (4)
Sounds like a district in East London

The Crossword Club is now open.

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: phrase+Ukraine=Frasier Crane

86 comments on “DT 27737 (Hints)

  1. Finished. But, most certainly, NOT enjoyable. Tortured, obtuse; factually and grammatically suspect. Mutter, mutter …. etc

      1. And you can count me in too. At least two words I have never encountered. Without the blog I would have stood no chance of completing this.

      1. Welcome to the blog Barkisland

        15a Some Christians surreally portrayed by artist in rain (12)
        It’s an anagram of (surreally portrayed by) ARTIST IN RAIN

  2. I dropped in by accident looking to check a toughie answer. Whilst i am here i might as well say hello. Hello.

  3. Pretty straightforward, no major holdups but not very inspiring. Didn’t know the second definition for 19d so that’s a positive I guess. */** for me.
    Thanx to all concerned.

  4. I found this one impossible. I had no idea about S. Coe, I have no idea about churches or religions, I have no idea about social media, not good with poets, so was quite lost. Even with the hints above, I struggled but finally finished it.

    I still do not understand the schoolmaster clue – never heard of a schoolmaster being called that.

    5*/1* for me.

      1. If only! More of an old curmudgeonly hermit, I am afraid.

        Been away from the UK for too long for some of the UK references such as Coe.

        1. As Coe was an Olympic champion in the 1980 Moscow and 1984 Los Angeles games, I would not have classed him as either a particularly modern or parochially British figure!

          1. The person referred to in the club was not SC’s main adversary. I won’t say any more for fear of being sent to the naughty corner.

  5. I thought that this was a thoroughly enjoyable puzzle and I particularly liked 16d, which brought a smile to my face, because I immediately thought of Coe’s other rival and I don’t suppose that I’ll be the only one. The compiler did a wonderful job of misleading me with 14d because ‘Breaking resistance’ led me to believe there was an anagram of ‘resistance’ in the offing. There is an anagram. It doesn’t work. Don’t try it…

      1. i also tried the anagram and agree with those who thought this a harder than usual Saturday cryptic.

    1. I also tried the non-anagram! Didn’t enjoy this much and learnt a new meaning for 19d. Some clues seemed so straight forward but I’m afraid I found other references rather oblique. I was very grateful for the hints today, BD! Thank-you

  6. I got held up in SW today with 16 being the last one in – I’m not familiar with S. Coe’s rivals, but once parsed correctly, I could check my answer. 22a also took me far too long.

    Favourites are 9a (good looking girl – what is there not to like?), 1d (silly walk – made me chuckle) and 11a (Try becoming popular on social media – I really like the surface)

    Many thanks setter and Big Dave

  7. Thank you setter for the puzzle which I found very difficult and I am afraid that I did not enjoy the time spent solving it. Many thanks BD for your hints, which I used to finish the NW corner. Saturday puzzles can be great fun, but not this one ! More punishment is to come this afternoon with a visit to the Macron stadium.

  8. I must admit I actuallyfound this quite tough today, not one of my favourite crosswords either! No stand out favourite today Kath http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_wink.gif a three star difficulty at least for me,
    thanks for hints Dave, I doubt I’d have finished without them http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_scratch.gif Now, isn’t there a game of rugby on today!! Come on Wales …http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_heart.gif

  9. There is a rather freakish coincidence re 16d in today’s puzzle in the Times: same clue number, grid position and all!

  10. 3d, 14d and 15a all new words to me. It’s been a long time since I’ve relied so heavily on hints, completers and anagram solvers, which I always view as a failure (no offence BD). Overall…..bit of a stinker….unless this was something to do with not being on the right wavelength today.

  11. I struggled to get on the setter’s wavelength and resorted to electronic help for a few. I thought that some of the wordplay was difficult to fathom, but overall a reasonably enjoyable puzzle and a completed grid. Thanks to BD and setter 3.5*/2.5*

  12. I do recommend today’s NTSPP. Don’t be put off by the name of the setter – Radler is in a gentle mood and there’s a tasty theme.

    1. Thanks gazza – I’ve just printed this one out and nearly ran a mile when I saw that it was one of Radler’s – I do find him really difficult although there’s always something that makes me laugh.

  13. I really enjoyed this one – quite tricky in places.
    I didn’t know 15a or the second meaning of 19d and spelt 9a the more usual way (to me anyway) which made it impossible to untangle but sorted that out eventually.
    I missed the anagram indicator in 7d for ages – don’t know how or why but I just did. I didn’t know 25a either but it wasn’t a very difficult anagram.
    I had trouble with 20d because I interpreted ‘in full pelt’ as meaning going hell for leather – wonder where that expression comes from.
    Lots of good clues – 9a and 2, 16 and 17d. My favourite was 1d because it was silly and made me laugh.
    With thanks to Mr Ron for a good crossword and to BD.
    Now I’m going to brave the NTSPP. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_unsure.gif
    The Lambs are here this weekend as it’s husband’s birthday. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif Out for dinner tonight. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

  14. I actually quite liked this – started it at 2am and then returned to it with my early morning cuppa. Nothing too outstanding but equally nothing to criticise for me. Thanks are extended to the usual suspects. Grey skies in East Herts. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cool.gif

  15. More difficult than the usual Saturday puzzle we thought, so we needed quite a lot of help. I’ve never heard of this meaning for 19 down, which is apparently an archaic word. Thank you to the Saturday setter and to BD.

  16. 3*/3* for an enjoyable puzzle, which was challenging in parts, particularly the NW. BUT…

    I put in something as my answer for 3d which I considered as highly implausible and then found out from my BRB that it was correct, if you can consider a US term as correct in a British newspaper. As an aside, having completed the Quickie, I could make absolutely no sense whatsoever out of the pun. My irritation with today’s setter increased when I discovered that to understand it you needed to the know the surname of a character in an appallingly unfunny US TV series!.
    Grumble, grumble, grumble.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_negative.gif
    Anyone want to join my “Keep the Telegraph Crosswords British” campaign?

    Many thanks to BD as ever, and (slightly qualified) thanks to the setter.

    1. Include me “OUT”

      Wot no Greek letters, no US states, no foreign bankers etc, etc.

      Expat Chris has explained it better by simply saying “No”.

  17. Tough today I thought. Never come across 19d in relation to a song before or the strange sounding group of Christians. Sounds like a bunch from a Shardlake novel.
    Don’t think I can remember a puzzle that needed so much use of the electronic aid.
    Quite challenging which I suppose a prize puzzle should be, shame it couldn’t have been a bit more enjoyable.
    Thx to all.

  18. Didn’t know what to make of this. Some amusing clues (1d, 11d14d,24a. Some quite obscure references too. Overall ***+/*** as I had to resort to BD’s hints to complete the SE corner. (22a and 19d)
    Still, provided some diversion on a cold, wet day while waiting for the Rugby.

  19. So it was different from the usual Saturday crosswords… So what? I found this an excellent challenge; tricky yes, obscure perhaps, but very enjoyable all the same.
    Even though I was music biz in my younger days 19d was a new one on me. I especially liked 9a and 16d; the latter being my favourite. A very clever clue. I am surprised this caused so much trouble!
    Ah well. ***/**** overall.
    Thanks to the setter and BD for his hints.

  20. Breezed thru this quite quickly – Mrs T I and enjoyed the toast and tea amidst the deep crisp and even Boston snow.

    1. I’ve been wondering about you both and that awful Boston weather, and I gather there’s more on the way. A friend at Emerson tells me that even the trains were shut down!

      1. Roads are clear, but we are running out of places to put the snow and the authorities can’t put it in the ocean.

        1. It really has been a terrible winter for New England. How are your basic services such as trash pick-up and mail delivery?

  21. Did find it harder than usual too.
    But quite enjoyable.
    13a is very popular in France and so is his son.
    16d, 17d and 19d were quite a challenge and it took me a while to parse.
    Thanks to the setter and to BD for the helpful hints.

  22. It’s good to have a Saturday puzzle with a bit of a challenge and this was by no means a walkover. The meaning of fired in 25a perhaps a bit iffy? Liked 1a. Thanks Mysteron and BD. Now back to the rugby after great Italy/Scotland game.

  23. I’m in the tougher than usual corner too. Thanks to Mr Ron and BD.

    Just back from the cinema – if you haven’t seen Shaun the Sheep the Movie yet, I highly recommend you do.

    1. Seconded!
      (Paddington is good, too. See both! Average age for Paddington last night in Wareham Rex seemed about 60)

  24. Left it late as usual but got through the puzzle taking it in turns owing to Saturday commitments. My better half was at a funeral but went to the wrong location, whilst I had far too much to do in the garden. We won’t be submitting an entry for the prize because as usual, the space allotted for the name and address has been used for working out the anagrams.

  25. Needed all but one of the hints as well. as some electronic help with this.
    My dreams of improving at crosswords are vanishing again.
    And Scotland lost ….snatched defeat from the jaws of victory …
    Not my best Saturday so far.

  26. Late today because I went to the pub for some help instead of coming here first! My normally reliable Times aficionado gave me a word that doesn’t exist for 9a – I should have gone with the BRB even though it was a new word for me. I thought this was a cracking puzzle, tougher than most Saturdays with some new derivations (for me) and a bit of crafty misdirection too. 3.5*/4* for me. 16d was my favourite.

    Many thanks to BD and the setter.

  27. I’m in the difficult group today struggled with the S E corner and have never heard of the second part of 19D, and 20D was a problem. Hope Sweet William enjoyed his day at the Macron Stadium,it’s just round the corner from me.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_bye.gif

      1. Good one Sweet William and may I add that he, at last, lost the race in the Isle of Man unfortunately.

  28. Very tricky today but enjoyable. I got stuck with 22a and 19d and had to resort to electronic help, even then I had to look up 19d for the second meaning.
    I got the 15a anagram but a new word for me and had to look it up.
    I was lost on 16d, I got it right but had no idea why.
    Thanks to the setter and to BD for explaining my answers.
    I rather liked 3d and 18a, but fave is 11d.

  29. Very bitty – a couple of nice anagrams and some very difficult ones – not much fun!

    A bit of a miserable day – I went to West Ham v Crystal Palace and saw the worst display from West Ham this season – Big Fat Sam out!

    Incidentally, I thought proper names were not allowed – like in 13a.

    Onwards and upwards – come on England – ‘Swing Low Sweet Chariot…’ http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif

  30. I see nothing amiss in this puzzle; l thought it perfectly fair and quite enjoyable, if not over-taxing. 2*/3* for me, and 9a my favourite among the clues. My thanks to the setter, and to BD for the hints. The illustration accompanying that for 9a was particularly welcome, if one may make such an observation these days without being accused of being an unreconstructed pervert!

  31. I was pleasantly surprised to find quite a few of the other commenters in agreement with my opinion of this puzzle. I though it was a 19d, and I didn’t enjoy it much.Sorry.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_negative.gif

  32. I too thought it was more difficult than the usual Saturday offering and I needed two or three hints to finish, and the review to explain a couple more. I didn’t much enjoy it…obscure definitions, odd alternative spellings, suspect definitions (a pandemic may be **********, but I wouldn’t call it customary). However, I didn’t think it was awful either. Just not to my taste. Thanks to the setter and to BD for the review and hints.

  33. After a very shaky start I really enjoyed it in the end. I was much heartened, when I’d done hardly any, to come here and find many others having a tussle too. I did need some electronic help and finished without using BDs excellent hints. Thank you to him and the setter. 4*/4*.

  34. Quite a challenge today, which makes a change for a Saturday puzzle, but completed eventually in three sittings. I had to check my BRB to convince myself that 19d was correct, not having come across the word in that sense before.
    Thanks to the setter for the mental workout and to BD for the site in general.

  35. 14d I think I have the answer but can’t relate it to “breaking” which is what is suggested above. The dictionary definition for the word I think it is is……a violation or infringement of a law or agreement…… if this counts as not acceptable as it is a prize crossword, please delete this bit

  36. Not the most fun this week and 2 answers were new to me, namely 15a and 19d. 24a was a doh! moment


  37. I was going to say that surely Friday and Saturday crosswords were mixed up this week. But looking back, there was plenty of good stuff and I can’t quite see why I found it so difficult. Glad I’m not the only one. Am really not in crossword mind this weekend it seems. Brain has turned to mush with visitors and the entertaining of.

    3d was a new term for me.
    For 9a I had to choose between spelling and parsing.
    I discovered new meanings in 24a and 19d as was the case for many of us.

    Favourite was probably 11d, with the shortlist containing 1d, 2d 17d and 20d.

    Thanks to the setter and BD.

  38. Been doing this for a while, but that was the toughest I can remember – really struggled.

  39. Thanks to the setter and to Big Dave for the hints. A very enjoyable puzzle, with some very tricky clues. Got there in the end without the hints, 19d was a new meaning for me. Also 15a&3d were new words. Favourite was 16d,great fun was 3*/4* for me.

  40. Thrown by Bar Bird – I put in **** – and that blocked one across and dented my spirits for too long.

    1. Welcome to the blog Peter

      That wasn’t a very good start – please read the instructions about what should not be entered in comments on current prize puzzles before posting again. You will find INCORRECT ANSWERS in that list in bold, red capital letters.

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