DT 27809 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27809

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27809

A full review by gnomethang

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

This puzzle was published on Saturday, 23rd May 2015

Morning All! Sorry for the short delay. I had a 06:30 start on site yesterday with a 90 mile round trip followed by a grim 190 mile drive to Droitwich from where we hit York tonight then Newcastle tomorrow for some Rugby League. As a result I was falling asleep in the dinner last night. There were some nice tricky clues in this which added to my enjoyment.

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           What can reduce stinging in cut parts (4,6)
DOCK LEAVES – A charade of DOCK (to cut) and LEAVES (parts or departs).

6a           Objections about end of the cheque (4)
STUB – A reversal of BUTS or objections.

9a           Bird leading man north (5)
HERON – Add N for north after the HERO or leading man in a film.

10a         Round Arabian land I pray troublesome arsonist’s failing (9)
PYROMANIA – Make an anagram (trouble) of I PRAY and place round the Arabian state of OMAN.

12a         Office worker recalled trick to perform (8,5)
ARTICLED CLERK. An anagram – indicated by ‘to perform’ of RECALLED TRICK.

14a         Decorate soldiers, famous one not losing heart (8)
ORNAMENT – Start with OR – Other Ranks or soldiers then add a NAME or famous person then add N(o)T from which the heart or middle letter has been removed.

15a         Contend with girl around European capital (6)
VIENNA – VIE or contend followed by a reversal (around) of ANN (girl).

17a         Recording takes time copying (6)
TAPING – Nice and straightforward – T for Time then APING for copying.

19a         Microphone picks up a joke description of the Queen? (8)
MAJESTIC Place A JEST (a joke) inside MIC – a standard abb, for microphone.

21a         Ensure smart appearance to bring case to court (5,4,4)
PRESS ONE’S SUIT – Two definitions or a cryptic def. and def. – take your pick.

24a         Out of country, don’t have so much to say (9)
STATELESS – The first is the definition – namely not having a country to belong to e.g. in exile. The second is to STATE LESS not having so much to say.

25a         Wide-eyed, this person standing in body of church (5)
NAÏVE – Place I (this person) inside the NAVE of a church.

26a         Fare payable at station reduced substantially (4)
EATS – A slang word for fare/food is hidden in (the phrase has been reduced substantially) payablE AT Station.

27a         Tropical fish uses orange in disguise (3,7)
SEA SURGEON – I forgot about this little critter and needed checking letters. Make an anagram (in disguise) of USES ORANGE.


1d           Children’s author raised boy, capturing hearts (4)
DAHL – Reverse (raise in a down clue) a LAD/boy and insert H for Hearts (an abb. from bridge notation).

2d           Certificate of film suitable for adults in particular (7)
CERTAIN – A film classification suitable for adults is a CERT(ification) A. Add In from the clue.

3d           Greeting to old acquaintance could make someone tingle (4,4,2,3)
LONG TIME NO SEE – An anagram (i.e. the letters could make) SOMEONE TINGLE.

4d           Woolly type mostly taking part of old actor (2,6)
ALPACINO – Almost all of ALPAC(a) followed by IN (taking part) and O for old. Note that the definition is simply actor not ‘old actor’!

5d           Jane entertains one in nest (5)
EYRIE – Jane EYRE including (entertaining) I for One.

7d           Can seabird set down in abbey? (7)
TINTERN – A charade of TIN (can) and a TERN (seabird).

8d           Don’t have the time to follow British battalion (5,5)
BLACK WATCH – If you don’t have the time then you might LACK (a) WATCH. Pace that after B for British.

11d         Man with weapon, he came running amok (7-6)
MACHINE GUNNER – A nice anagram (amok) of HE CAME RUNNING and a good surface reading.

13d         Redirect the post to a cleaner (10)
TOOTHPASTE – Another anagram, this one indicated by redirect, of THE POST TO A.

16d         Book is helpful to musicians (8)
BASSISTS – B for Book and then ASSISTS or ‘is helpful to’.

18d         Like some concrete formerly poured round playing field (7)
PRECAST – I found it tricky to spot the wordplay (which is good!). Place PAST (formerly) around a REC – a common abb. for Recreation ground or playing field. The good misdirection from the setter here is to make us look for PRE meaning ‘formerly’.

20d         More than one bird races to catch island rodents (7)
TITMICE – Plural of the Titmouse. Place I for Island inside the TT Races and follow that with MICE for rodents.

22d         Relative peace finally found in Mediterranean resort (5)
NIECE – Place the final letter of (peac)E inside NICE – a Med resort. It would be nice to have a moratorium on NIECE in crosswords but it is one of those words that is almost exclusively suggested by the checking letters.

23d         Thin as a rake (4)
LEAN – Two definitions – This or not fatty (in a cut of meat, say) and to rake or lean at an angle.
Thanks to the setter, I thought there were some good clues here. I’m off for a weekend of beer and rugby and will see you all in about two weeks.


2 comments on “DT 27809

  1. In my edition of this DT Xword, the letter-count of 25a was given as (2,3).

    NAIVE was clearly the right solution, but it shakes one’s confidence in the clues!

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