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DT 27900

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27900

Hints and tips by Kitty

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Why are Kitty’s hints and tips like buses?*  That’s right – none come for ages, then all of a sudden there are three in a row.  Miffypops is living the high life in bonnie Scotland, so you’re stuck with me for the next couple of Mondays.

It seems that Rufus knew I was coming for there was plenty here for me to enjoy.  I found the whole thing quite delightful and full of laughs.  It doesn’t deviate much from the Monday norm but there are fewer anagrams than usual, made up for by a double dose of double definitions.

Definitions are underlined in the clues. If you want to see the actual answer then press ANSWER and all will be revealed. If you do not want to see it – do not click.

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    A loud story, not factual but friendly (7)
AFFABLE: We start with the A from the clue, then add the musical symbol for loud followed by a myth or an allegorical or moral narrative

5a    Presumptuous  footballer? (7)
FORWARD: Two definitions: lacking due modesty or respect, or a player positioned in front

9a    Terrace in occupation (5)
PATIO: A terrace or paved area is contained within the final word of the clue

10a    Idiot – to get tight and then dance (9)
SCREWBALL: Firstly, a verb meaning to tighten by means of rotating a cylinder with a helical groove or ridge on its outside (thanks Chambers).  After this comes a formal dance and the result is a crazy or eccentric person.  Primarily a US term to my mind but it has crossed the pond

11a    Recoil from falsehood in sincere broadcast (10)
RESILIENCE: Insert an untruth into an anagram (broadcast) of SINCERE to get a word meaning recoil, more usually meaning the ability to recover from or withstand adversity

12a    A kind of short cut for sailors (4)
CREW: A type of hair style and a ship’s company

14a    Hard case for the beautician? (4,8)
UGLY CUSTOMER: An unpleasant, hostile person, or someone who may be in need of extensive aesthetic improvement

18a    Adjustment in damages (12)
COMPENSATION: Defined in two ways.  Counterbalancing or regulation; financial reparation

21a    End of story, we hear (4)
TAIL: The rear part of a creature or thing, or a homophone (we hear) of a story

22a    Fresh meat and drink provides morale (4,6)
TEAM SPIRIT: An anagram (fresh) of MEAT followed by a strong liquor

25a    Ran lightly on to the scene and stumbled (7,2)
TRIPPED UP: Moved or skipped with quick light steps (first word of the answer) onto the scene (second word).  Or fell flat on one’s face.  I am similarly stumbling over this hint as I can’t quite decide whether it’s a charade or a double definition

26a    Not having a list to put up (5)
ERECT: Two definitions: upright and to raise or build.  Some interesting illustrative opportunities here, but I decided on a video

ARVE Error: need id and provider

27a    Food container factory in which girl accepts call? Quite the opposite (7)
CANNERY: The last part of the clue tells us that it is the call that contains (accepts) the girl, not the other way round.  A girl’s name inside a call or shout leads us to the factory where food is put in tins

28a    The last sort of word to define secrecy (7)
STEALTH: Anagram (sort of) of THE LAST.  Secrecy or furtiveness

ARVE Error: need id and provider



1d    Aim for a high place in the Church (6)
ASPIRE: The A from the clue and then a point on top of a church.  Hope or strive for

2d    Thief’s unusual charm (6)
FETISH: Anagram (unusual) of THIEF S.  The charm is an object believed to have a spirit lodged within it.  It was another interesting search for images for this one

3d    One operating still as a pirate (10)
BOOTLEGGER: This smuggler uses an apparatus for distillation.  Video by special request

ARVE Error: need id and provider

4d    Girl that’s back in Oriental island (5)
ELSIE: Take the letter denoting the Orient and a word for a small island and reverse the lot to get a feminine name

5d    A yard in front? (9)
FORECOURT: Not cryptic at all if the yard you first think of is not a measure of length but of area.  The area is in front of a building

6d    Disagreements in the ranks (4)
ROWS: Sometimes the underlining is all you need

7d    They may make grandee enraged or angered (8)
ANAGRAMS: The clue contains examples of the answer (as does this puzzle).  What do grandee, enraged and angered have in common?

8d    State of the French merchandise (8)
DELAWARE: French words for OF and THE followed by merchandise or produce, (more commonly used in plural).  The state is in the north eastern part of the USA

13d    We are always enveloped in this  mood (10)
ATMOSPHERE: Another of the clue-type of the day.  The gas which surrounds us; the ambience or feeling of a place or creative work

15d    Seedy, arty novel of very recent history (9)
YESTERDAY: Anagram (novel) of SEEDY ARTY

16d    Note 100 still in a trance (8)
ECSTATIC: A musical note, 100 and a word meaning stationary.  Join them together to attain a state of rapture

17d    One should get on with it (8)
AMBITION: Somebody with this might be expected to achieve success, since they have the drive and determination to do so

19d    Test gold before transaction (6)
ORDEAL: Gold in heraldry then a business agreement.  The test is a severe trial or distressing experience.  Historically, it’s a test of guilt by subjection of the accused to severe pain, survival of which was taken as divine proof of innocence

20d    Sewer’s cramp? (6)
STITCH: A sewer makes one of these with each complete movement of the needle.  It’s also a kind of cramp more likely to be brought on by running or other vigorous exercise

23d    Isn’t happy adapting poems (5)
MOPES: Is listless or miserable.  Anagram (adapting) of POEMS

24d    East end building extension (4)
APSE: We’re back in church, but have moved from the top point to the eastern recess

The clues I liked are easy to guess.  Which ones made you smile?


*I hope you didn’t answer “because they’re unpleasant and filthy” …

The Quick Crossword pun: plague+round=playground

41 comments on “DT 27900

  1. A very American puzzle with some interesting wordplay. Got stuck in SW by putting wrong answer for 25a but hints helped out. Loved all the videos and images for the hints which must have been a difficult choice with some of the answers !

    Not too difficult for a Monday morning.

    Thanks to setter and Kitty


      1. The apse is an alcove in a church, typically at the building’s eastern end. The clue had me fooled for a while trying to drop an h from somewhere or think of some rhyming slang. It didn’t help that I’d long forgotten the location of the apse.

  2. Thanks Kitty, great review. Typical Rufus, though I was surprised at the answer to 2d -learn something new everyday. Clues I particularly liked were 14a (hard case for the beautician), 5d (a yard in front), 6d (disagreements in the rank), 15d Seedt arty novel of very recent history) and 26a (Not having a list to put up).

    Many thanks Rufus and Kitty

  3. Just a quick hello from me – friend coming to stay for a couple of nights and due to arrive any minute.
    Lovely stuff from Rufus and an extremely restrained blog from Kitty, given the opportunities that presented themselves!
    Fav. is definitely 14a with a mention for 1d.
    Many thanks to both. 1*/4* for me.

    By the way – loved the ‘tail’ Kitty but won’t even venture to ask who requested the 3d clip. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif

    1. A reasonable assumption, Jane, but wrong in this case. The 3d clip was requested by someone even more special than Miffypops.

  4. 2*/3.5*. Another joyful Monday puzzle. Although at easier end of his spectrum and perhaps not quite Rufus at his sparkling best, it was still very good indeed.

    I needed to check my BRB to establish that 24d is normally at the eastern end. 17d was my last one in.

    Once again it’s difficult to pick a single favourite but I’ll settle for 28a simply because it gave Kitty the excuse for a wonderful video.

    Many thanks to Rufus and to Kitty.

  5. Not too difficult and lots of smiles along the way.
    17d stood out as a great clue along with 14a. Thanks Kitty for a great review and Rufus for a fun start to the week.

  6. Another excellent puzzle from Rufus and similarly excellent review by Kitty.
    lots of good clues to pick from, many already mentned, so l am going to nominate 7d.
    Its really too nice to sit in and do puzzles, but played golf all weekend, so having a rest.
    **/**** today.

  7. Didn’t have much trouble with this typically Monday offering, but I was stumped for a long time by 1d. Why!!! I don’t know!!! Thanks Kitty for sorting my tortured mind out. Generally enjoyable though.

  8. Nice short and concise clues. Love it.
    19d stood out for me.
    Liked the picture for 16d.
    Thanks to Rufus and to Kitty for the review.

  9. 2* difficulty, maybe a bit more as I had trouble with a couple of answers, and 3* for enjoyment.
    I missed the relevance of ‘not having a list’ in 26a and also the ‘operating still’ in 3d – both were stupid (me, I mean) and typical of the kind of mistakes I make in Monday crosswords.
    24d was my last one and only ‘bunged in’ because I couldn’t think of anything else that would fit – still not sure about the extension bit.
    I started off with the wrong second part of 25a – I did wonder about it but 23d sorted it out.
    Just so as to be less predicable than usual I liked 5 and 9a.
    I also liked 12a and 13d, even though that one took ages. My favourite was 14a.
    Thanks to Rufus and Kitty.
    Quiet here today . . .

  10. For me a tale of two halves. The right hand side was not a problem but the left was quite tricky. Still don’t see why Scene in 25a even with the hint and why is a patio a yard? Last in was 4d, just plain stupidity on my part!
    Best clue for me was 7d, made me smile.
    Thx to all.

    1. Just found Yard as the second definition in the BRB, don’t think I remember this definition before.

  11. Delightful start to the week. Thanks Rufus for the fun and Kitty for being there in case of need. Fav 22a. Once again toyed with a drain for ages for 20a and tried to use a grenade in 7d but then a couple of d’oh moments. ***/***. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif

  12. Nice straightforward crossword nothing really to frighten the horses!

    That’s the Cryptic, the Quick, the Herculis, the Sudoku’s, the mini Sudoku and the Anagrams all done – it’s all go here! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_whistle3.gif

  13. Nice enjoyable and solvable crossword just right for a Monday **/**** ? 24d was a write in not realising that the apse was always at the east end of a church! I was looking for some Cockney rhyming slang ? Thanks to Kitty and Rufus , favourites: 14a, 25a, 3d, 7d & 16d ?

  14. Another lovely Rufus puzzle! I loved 14a but fave has to be 28a, like RD mainly for the video opportunity! I noted the cardboard box, a fixture in many rooms of my house as play pens for the cats.
    Thanks to Rufus and to Kitty for another entertaining review.

        1. Yes – I think your princess should have a turn – mine is here all the time, although I suspect my two Pet Lambs might object – what a good thing they never look at BD’s blog!

      1. I hadn’t noticed but, now that you’ve pointed it out, so do I – should have gone to Specsavers!

  15. Having been away and struggling with some tiresome puzzles in another place I was looking forward to a straightforward Monday Daily Telegraph crossword. Sadly this turned out to be far from the case and I conceded with 15 (fifteen) unsolved.


    1. What other place? I didn’t know that there was another one – well, not one worth visiting anyway!

  16. Not too much of a struggle today, but a few clues which took me much longer than they should have eg 11a, 4d and 27a. Otherwise all pretty straightforward. Though 8d and 7d were good. 1*/3* thanks setter and Kitty.

  17. Interesting to note the I was not alone in looking for a word for 24d where an H had to be dropped. Seems like we were all trying to put more into the clue than was actually there. Plenty to smile about and another great review .
    Thanks Rufus and Kitty.

  18. What a great way to start the week. Lots of smiles in this one. I particularly liked 3d and 7d. Thanks to Rufus for the puzzle, and to Kitty for the excellent and restrained review. I thought that your movements were private, so I wonder how Rufus knew you were coming.

  19. Started this one in Bishops Stortford like a train, but got held up by a pesky few in the SW corner. Gammon steak (with pineapple) new potatoes and runner beans later it all dropped neatly into place, with 24d being the last one in as it was the only word I could think of to fit the checkers. Many thanks to Rufus and to Kitty for a splendid review (I enjoyed the asides more than the hints, as usual). 2*/3*

    1. Gammon Steak with Pineapple – sounds like a Berni Inn from 1968 – A bottle of Liebfraumilch and Black Forest Gateau to follow?

  20. A bit trickier than normal for a Monday but none the worse for that. **/*** from us.

    Cheers to Rufus and Kitty

    P.S. Where is everyone today?

    1. I’m here but where is everyone else – struggling with Mr Rookie perhaps? I’m admitting defeat with him, for now anyway.

  21. A super start to the puzzling week. 1* difficulty in terms of time taken, but somehow it felt tougher. Certainly 4* for enjoyment (my favourite clue – 14a – justifies that score on its own). Thanks to Rufus, and of course to Kitty.

  22. Goodnight all http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_bye.gif. Thanks for the comments. I will leave you with a pic that didn’t make the cut.

    (A second can be found in the first few results if you image search “erect tail”)

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