DT 27875 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27875 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27875 (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.


6a    Awfully wet, raw now — hide for time when the elements are more favourable (7,6)
An anagram (awfully) of WET RAW NOW HIDE

8a    A way ham is carved leading to complaint (6)
The A from the clue and the two-letter abbreviation for a way or road followed by an anagram (is carved) of HAM

9a    Press and TV ignoring a gallery’s muse (8)
Start with a five-letter word for the press and TV, drop (ignoring) the A and add a famous art gallery to get not one of the muses but a verb meaning to muse

11a    Go very pale, have to leave northern port (6)
Drop HAVE from a port in north west England

12a    Bird‘s come down by train (8)
A verb meaning to come down to earth followed by the train as a means of travel

16a    Am in control to bring about vessel (7)
AM inside a verb meaning to control a vessel gives a type of vessel

25a    Phaetons, unsteady transport (8)
An anagram (unsteady) of PHAETONS gives a different kind of carriage

I have a page of horse-drawn carriages in preparation – I’ll add it to The Mine when I’ve been able to add a few more pictures, but it can be viewed here:

27a    Right pickle to follow small first bite (4,9)
A three-letter verb meaning to follow then S(mall) and the first bite or meal of the day


1d    Trace the damaged tube (8)
An anagram (damaged) of TRACE THE

3d    Effect of quavers on the score (7)
… this score is a musical score

4d    Concealed layer swallows did for building (6)
A layer who lays eggs around (swallows) an anagram (for building) of DID

5d    One runs daily or perhaps weekly (6)
A cryptic definition of someone who runs a daily or weekly publication

17d    Go and fish in way that costs money (8)
A go or opportunity followed by a fish gives a way or road that costs money to use

18d    A bird with mother somewhere in Egypt (5,3)
the A from the clue and a bird followed by a mother

19d    Allude to note duplicated for judge (7)
A five-letter verb meaning to allude to followed by a musical note and then the same note

22d    I love Latin — with English graduate, it’s an elementary thing (6)
Probably the only thing that everyone who studies Latin never forgets is how to decline the verb “to love” – so start with the three-letter Latin word for “I love” then add E(nglish) and a graduate

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: cube+ben+heel+ (sandal)=Cuban heel (sandal)

Did anyone else think that the clue for 1 Across should be “hexahedral ice” not “hexagonal ice”?

54 comments on “DT 27875 (Hints)

  1. Probably one of the easiest Saturday prize ever.
    No real favourites.
    Thanks to the setter and to BD.

  2. This was a curate’s egg puzzle for me with some very good clues, some less good. I found three quarters virtually R&W, but the SE corner held me up for a long time. It was a shame that a couple of Americanisms slipped in.

    I can’t explain in detail without the risk of a trip to the naughty corner but I don’t think, BD, that your hint for 3d is strictly accurate. The word “quavers” as part of the all-in-one definition does not specifically refer to the musical notes – but it does make an excellent surface read!

    12a was a new bird for me, 26a was my last one in and 7d was my favourite.

    Many thanks to Mr Ron and to BD.

  3. Just finished it and found it very entertaining and doable. Not too sure about 26a though. Liked 9a 11a and lots more.


    Thanks to setter and BD

  4. You live and learn! I pride myself on an above-average knowledge of British birds and I didn’t know that there was an alternative name for the 12a. 5a was new to me too, Dave, and I’m delighted to see that there is work in progress on a new page, which will be a welcome addition to this wonderful site. For all of us cricket lovers, our cup overfloweth! All you need now is for Spurs to win at Old Trafford, Dave.

  5. Watched the final wicket fall, but now have to get ready for a wedding. If time permits, may tackle the prize puzzle later. An enjoyable solving day to one and all.

  6. Very solvable with no real dramas. I’ll score it as the Aussies will regard their current status in the Ashes – 1/3. Thanks to all.

  7. Finished comfortably before lights out last night, with plenty of help from the Crossword Dictionary, Favourite 25a, a neat anagram I thought. Congratulations to England, looking forward to the continuing Aussie press coverage!

  8. SW and SE held me up until the hints were published, then finished without too many problems. My absolute favourite is 6d – can’t say more for fear of banishment to the naughty corner – an exceedingly clever clue! Thanks to setter and BD – don’t always comment, but always read the hints and comments every day.

  9. A nice straightforward Saturday puzzle. There seemed to be a lot of anagrams but I’m not complaining… 6a was favourite. Having watched and enjoyed the cricket I’m a little surprised Mr Ron didn’t give us a few Ashes clues… I can see one that’s crying out for a cricketing reference!

    Very enjoyable with thanks to Mr Ron and BD

  10. I found this one of the toughest Saturday puzzles for a long time. It was a real struggle even with the hints. Left only now with one clue, 26a, I can see an answer but can’t parse the feeble bit!
    Thought 27a and 17d very weak clues and it was only thanks to Google that I got 25a. Is there a dictionary somewhere of weird horse drawn vehicle that setters use? 12a was a new bird to me. Best clue I thought was 19d. Probably not thinking clearly for today’s euphoria, an innings and 78 runs! Well done the lads, what a game and what a series.
    Thx to all

    1. Everyone seems to have a problem with 26a.
      Think of a 4 letter word for feeble or insignificant and insert ( boxing) a two letter abbreviation or acronym for a kind of companion and you get a synonym of forceful.

      1. I thought it was the abbreviation for the honour – the ‘companion’ bit in the clue – inside a word meaning weak or frail, all having a boxing link.

        1. Hi Hilary,
          My little toe is getting back to normal size. I’m wearing some Campers open sandals that are just perfect for work.
          Besides, during the summer rush, you forget about the pain.

  11. What a wonderful day – England smash the Aussies for the Ashes, Football’s back and the Telegraph give us a crossword full of anagrams – Life is Sweet!

    Oh, and my Team, where I have just reserved my seat for next Season at the Olympic Stadium, appears as an answer in the Prize Crossword – can it get any better!

  12. Golly, for once I am on the setter’s wavelength so thank you ?

    West side went in easily and final one in was 3d

    Thank you BD for the hints, I only needed to read them to explain the answers and not to shift my way of thinking

  13. In contrast to Jean-Luc and Dawn above, whilst there were some simple clues in there, I find myself on a totally different wavelength to today’s setter with some of the clues. Not sure I’m even in the right spectrum to be honest. Overall it took me much longer than a normal Saturday, although I am suffering from a bout of man-flu (as the ladies in my household refer to my summer cold exacerbated by hayfever) so perhaps that’s not helping.

    Regarding 25a, which was my last one in, that list of horse-drawn carriages will come in handy BD. I’ve come across quite a few, mostly in crosswords, but not this one. I did get it eventually as it was so clearly an anagram and with the checkers in place there were only a few possibilities with my BRB providing confirmation. Just to rub it in, being unfamiliar with the word Phaeton, guess what I found when I looked it up…!

  14. I thought this was easy peasy! I must have been dead on wavelength.
    Had to look up 12a as I had never heard of it, but it was very obvious.
    Loved 27a and declare it my fave.
    Thanks to setter and to BD for his review.

  15. Fabulous Saturday treat, lots of lovely anagrams and enough unusual words like 25a to keep us on our toes. Mentioning toes the quickie seems to have a bit of a foot fetish Tee Hee. Have a nice weekend and thanks to BD and setter.

    1. cryptic -*/*** -liked 27A and 7D

      regarding the quickie, I was going to say that there seems to be a theme afoot, but you beat me to it

  16. 6d – I’ve definitely seen this before … but what a wonderful apposite anagram!

    1. My thoughts entirely! My husband nearly exploded when reading the news about this!

  17. Thanks to the setter and to Big Dave for the hints. A read and write for me. Favourite was 26a. Was 1*/3* for me.

  18. Enjoyable and doable. a treat! My last one in was 27a – my favourite. 1*/4*. Many thanks to Mr Ron and to Big Dave for the hints!

  19. Not too much of a struggle for a prize crossword. Some great clues! I particulrly liked 27a, 26a, but my favourite was 22d….really made me smile! Thanks to setter, I really enjoyed this one, and to BD.2*/4*

  20. Have been doing the DT corssword on and off for years, completed it wihout recourse to crossword / anagram solvers a handful (small) of times, but only came across this excellent helpline today – searching for “effect of quavers” incidentally. Many thanks indeed for the useful hints.

    1. Welcome to the blog, Sam. Now that you’ve found us I hope that you’ll be a regular visitor (and commenter).

  21. All finished. Cricket, wedding and Saturday puzzle. Day couldn’t have been better. Favourites were 7d and 27a. Not so keen on 3d. Thanks to setter, and although I didn’t need help today, thanks to BD for all the time and effort put in. Off now to read the sequel to Daddy Long Legs which arrived this morning.

  22. Interesting mix of easyish top half and more difficult bottom. Some clues brilliant (6d is really superb for the first day of the season) and some not so appealing. I have the answer for 23a (I think) but can’t for the life of me parse it from the clue. With many thanks to setter and BD.

    1. 23a Recompense for fighting whilst overdrawn (6)
      Think of a word for a lot of fighting and place it in the answer with reference to a phrase (2,3,3) meaning overdrawn.

  23. This really was a R & W so much so that I didn’t even sit down to do it but stood at kitchen table to fill it in. Took paper with me on train to London for a theatre visit and left it so can’t now recall whole puzzle or indeed a particular Fav but do remember at least 2 long anagrams which helped. Burt Bacharach musical tribute “What’s It All About” at Menier Chocolate Factory Theatre (wacky – a first for me!) was tear-jerkingly nostalgic if somewhat noisy! Thanks Mysteron and BD. */**.

  24. I thought this was a good prize crossword with a variety of different clues…well, they would be I guess. The northern port caused me grief because I went to the one on the other side so as a result I couldn’t parse it. D’oh!
    Otherwise no probs. 27a was my favourite and 2/3* overall.
    Thanks to the setter and BD for setting me right on northern ports.

  25. Lovely holiday fare!! Glad of the various explanations for 26a, otherwise was able to muddle through. Thanks to all and congrats to our cricketers ?

  26. Where have you guys been all my life?

    Brill blog and a great help so thanks to all concerned.

  27. The only difficulty I had was with parsing 26A, so thanks to J-L for sorting that out. No real favorites today. Thanks to Big Dave for the review, and I hope you are all in for some lovely holiday weekend weather over there.

  28. Very gentle, but nothing was likely to annoy me after the last Aussie wicket fell this morning. 1*/3*, and 26a top clue. 1d made me wince a bit, given my recent experience of one. Thanks to the setter, and to BD for the hints.

  29. Only just tackled this, as I have been busy at Old Trafford supporting Spurs, and maintaining my associated web site. Definite favourite was 6d. I wonder if the compiler knew the true irony of his clue?

    1. Welcome to the blog Pota

      21d Renounce Frenchman, say, that’s put inside (6)
      I can’t answer you question, but you put the Latin abbreviation of say or for example inside one of the usual French first names

  30. Sorry for being off topic but can someone please explain 1a in the Quick Crossword. I can see the connection to ice but what’s it got to do with hexagonal?

      1. No, I don’t read the hints unless I’m stuck but I have now thank you.
        I always read the comments though.
        22d was my least favourite not having ever studied latin
        Nice to see the old Phaetons anagram back again.

  31. Didn’t bother starting this on Saturday as there was the far more important business of an Ashes win to devour and digest. Once started, it was finished in double quick time though had to double-check on 12a and 25a.
    Have to say it wasn’t one of my favourite puzzles. Too many anagrams, a couple of ‘odd’ clues, and a dreaded football reference in August – it’s the height of summer, England are in full flow and still the football invades. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif .
    Favourite clue 22d – even though I never did Latin.

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