DT 27910 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27910

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27910

Hints and tips by Deep Threat

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

Good morning from South Staffs on an autumn morning which started misty but is now beautifully sunny.

A fair workout from Giovanni this morning, with some nice penny-drop moments. 14a was the last one in for me.

In the hints below, the definitions are underlined. The answers are hidden under the ‘Click here!’ buttons, so don’t click if you don’t want to see them.

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           Fluid duct drained, fixed in advance (3,3,5)
CUT AND DRIED – Anagram (fluid) of DUCT DRAINED

7a           Form of advertisement bad, put in rubbish container, not much good (7)
BILLING – Another word for bad put inside a rubbish container, followed by an abbreviated form (not much) of Good.

8a           Police department brings in lots — all about to become vigorous (7)
DYNAMIC – Put a word for lots inside the acronym for the police department which investigates crime, then reverse the lot (all about).

10a         Pick out some in bunch as terrorists, immoral (8)
UNCHASTE – Hidden (pick out some) in the clue.

11a         Soft corrosion on something tiny (6)
PROTON – Put together the musical symbol for soft, a form of corrosion, and ON (from the clue) to get a subatomic particle.

13a         Periods of hold-ups with elevated railroad sealed off (4)
DAYS – Remove the nickname given to an elevated railroad in the US from a word for hold-ups.

14a         Pole swinging close by flower? (7-3)
FISHING-ROD – A cryptic definition of the sort of pole which might be wielded next to a flowing river.
ARVE Error: need id and provider

16a         Teacher comes to fancy hotel — a place for buns (6,4)
RABBIT HOLE – A Jewish teacher followed by an anagram (fancy) of HOTEL. The buns in question are furry, with long ears and a fluffy tail.

Image result for rabbit hole

18a         Get a divining rod (4)
TWIG – Double definition: an informal word for get or understand; and the literal description of a divining rod.

21a         Latest report to give time when Oxford term will start? (6)
UPDATE – Given that students come down from Oxford at the end of term, this could be the day that term starts.

22a         Coffee offering energy, thus crowd’s imbibed (8)
ESPRESSO Energy, followed by a word for thus wrapped around a crowd or throng.

Image result for espresso

24a         Men on street taking time to find safe accommodation (7)
STORAGE – Put together an abbreviation for STreet, the acronym for soldiers who are not officers, and a long period of time.

25a         Fashionable to have very limited language? The opposite (7)
INVERSE – The usual crossword term for fashionable, followed by Very, and an alternative name for Scots or Irish Gaelic.

26a         Awfully tired intellectual becomes harmful (11)
DETRIMENTAL – Anagram (awfully) of TIRED followed by another word for intellectual, as opposed to physical.


1d           Reticent to swallow drop of liquid? It’s producing flatulence (7)
COLICKY – A small amount of liquid, often used in conjunction with ‘of paint’, inside a word for reticent or shy.

2d           Time to get foul-mouthed briefly, being in the clan (6)
TRIBAL Time, followed by a word for foul-mouthed with the final D removed.

3d           Man on board reportedly not heavy — a wicked type in the dark? (5-5)
NIGHT-LIGHT – A homophone (reportedly) of a chess piece followed by ‘not heavy’, giving something with a wick.

4d           Daughter hugged by proper dandy (4)
DUDE – An abbreviation for Daughter inside a word for proper or fitting.

5d           Uneducated drunk ranting about nothing (8)
IGNORANT – Anagram (drunk) of RANTING rapped around the letter which looks like zero.

6d           Goddess encountered in grass, rolling over (7)
DEMETER – Reverse (rolling over) a type of grass, and insert a word for ‘encountered’, to get the Greek goddess of the harvest.

Image result for Demeter

7d           Mistake over kiss? One would have been shot! (11)
BLUNDERBUSS – A mistake or gaffe, followed by an archaic word for a kiss, giving a variety of firearm.

9d           Is lady able to travel round and see tailless bird? (6,5)
CANADA GOOSE – Put together ‘is able’, a woman’s name, ‘travel’, a round letter, and SE(e).

Image result for canada goose

12d         Little fellow with one stone in battle ultimately accounting for him? (10)
PHILISTINE – The whole clue refers to the story of David and Goliath, and the answer is the tribe or people that Goliath belonged to. Put together a shortened form of a man’s name, the Roman numeral for one, an abbreviation for STone, IN (from the clue), and the last letter (ultimately) of battlE.

15d         Divert a short distance round overturned vehicle (8)
DISTRACT – Reverse (overturned) an agricultural vehicle and insert it into an abbreviation for DISTance.

17d         English town has plot to get car manufacturer (7)
BEDFORD – A garden plot followed by a make of car.

19d         Walter’s terrible idler (7)
WASTREL – Anagam (terribly) of WALTER’S.

20d         Cold artist against a tie — that is unwanted item of neckwear (6)
CRAVAT – Put together Cold, the usual crossword artist, the letter which means ‘against’ in a list of football fixtures, A (from the clue), and T(ie) with the Latin abbreviation for ‘that is’ removed.

23d         One in street sharing something with a neighbour (4)
SEMI – A cryptic definition of a property which is not entirely separate from its neighbour.

The Quick Crossword pun SIKH + WHENCE = SEQUENCE

79 comments on “DT 27910

  1. Very enjoyable with my favourite being 3d. Took ages to get 13a not helped by msspelling blunderbuss! Not the easiest Friday from the Maestro but great fun.
    Thx to all.

    1. Brian, you will be amazed to know that I found today’s Giovanni far more difficult than yesterday’s one from your nemesis. Horses for courses?

  2. Good fun especially after yesterday’s offering,loved 16A still chuckling now.14A also very good.Thanks to the setter & DT for his review,have a good weekend one & all?

  3. No obscurities! A delightful puzzle with many nice surprises. Too many nice clues to mention, I started ticking 10a, 11a, 13a, 14a, 16a…. you get the idea.

    Many thanks Giovanni, and DT for the review.

  4. */****

    A light breeze of a puzzle. No hold ups. No obscurities. Just over too soon. Can’t name a favourite.

    Many thanks to Giovanni and to DT for a fine blog.

    Have a good weekend all.

    Osmosis calls.

  5. Slightly harder than normal (7/10) – took me twice as long today. 7d – though easyish to solve once you’d got mistake = blunder, but I’d didn’t know till I looked it up that “buss” is an archaic/dialect word for kiss. Very interesting! Cryptic crosswords are a great way to discover obscure words and increase your vocabulary. Many thanks to the setter.

    PS. How do you bloggers know who the setter is each day?

  6. Very benign one from the Don, I thought. Only slight hold up was almost missing the 1a anagram – couldn’t get the idea of something to do with a tear duct out of my head! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cry.gif
    2*/3.5* for me with 14&15a plus 3&12d appearing on the honours board.

    Many thanks to DG and to DT – glad the sunshine’s found it’s way over to you.

  7. I enjoyed this a lot more than I sometimes do with Friday crosswords.
    7a and 2d were my last answers.
    I felt smug about 13a – today is the first time I’ve remembered the US elevated railroads – they’ve always caught me out before.
    Got into a pickle with 15d – I didn’t see the ‘cart’ – could only see the ‘car’! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_rolleyes.gif
    I liked 14 and 16a (where’s RD when you need him – he’d like that one!) and 3 and 7d. My favourite was 18a.
    With thanks to Deep Threat and to Giovanni.
    Still got a sore throat – very snotty – very grumpy! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif

    1. Poor Kath – sending you over some ‘snuffle babe’ post-haste.
      Hope that when elder pet lamb turns up this weekend, she cooks you a nice meal and cossets you with cuddles and alcohol. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

  8. Loved this puzzle – I must have been on the right wavelength for once. I didn’t know the US nickname for elevated railway so had to do a search. Eventually found it was ‘el’ so consequently 13a was my last one in. Favourite was 7d.
    Thanks to the Don and DT. 2/4* for me.

        1. Good wishes from the very junior apprentice I am looking forward to being able to join the august body of people who fit in. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_negative.gif

          1. Goodness me, Hilary – you ‘fitted in’ a long time ago. You – and the tissues and the poltergeist and the cupboard under the stairs. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

            1. Not only does Hilary fit in perfectly, she is fit Jane. believe me. I have seen a photo. hilary is just like me. lovely all the way through.

  9. I struggled with this one, but not nearly as much as I did with yesterday’s which I eventually abandoned. Who am I kidding? Which I quckly abandoned.
    Got there in the end today, though. Sadly just not on the same wavelength but can see the answers now that the hints have been set out.

    Thanks very much to Deep Threat and to the setter.

  10. This puzzle took me a little while to get going with and I didn’t find it that straightforward – quite tricky in places I thought. Thanks to DT and Giovanni. **/***

      1. My pleasure – I was only commenting on how I found the puzzle in terms of difficulty (OK point noted re: ‘that straightforward’ but I rarely have much spare time in the day so I tend not to draft my responses).

        I notice that you fail to offer any type of ‘fascinating insight’ into your findings – maybe you could prepare a sonnet based on various clues used (if you actually attempted the puzzle).

  11. For some unknown reason I had an N at the beginning of 19d which made solving 18ac difficult. I twigged the problem eventually to finish an enjoyable little run through.
    I am feeling quite calm about the wonderful excess of Rugby Union that is coming our way. Yay!

    1. Hear hear! I also look forward to six weeks of RU combined today with the Davis Cup tennis – square eyes at bedtime! Come on England/Great Britain http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_rose.gifhttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_rose.gif

  12. I found this a bit knotty and not really my scene. East was simpler than the West. Had bunged in 13a but still can’t recall the US railroad. Another bung-in for 6d which didn’t ring a bell. Tried to think of a naughty person for 3d which after parsing became joint Fav with 21a for me. Thank you Giovanni and DT – always a treat to hear Satch and Cros. ****/***. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_neutral.gif

  13. Thanks to Giovanni and to Deep Threat. I couldn’t do this to save my life. Needed 8 hints to finish. Quite enjoyed what I could do. Managed to get 6d from the wordplay, but had never heard of her. 1d was a new word for me. 14a completely fooled me, was looking for a flower, doh. 16a would never have thought that rabbits are buns, always thought of them as bunnies. Favourite was 9d. Sometimes I just can’t get on the Don’s wavelength. Was 4*/2* for me.

    1. I do like your good hearted ness Heno. You resort to the hints with a smile whereas others throw a hissy fit and blame the setter, the puzzles editor and anybody else.

    2. >>Sometimes I just can’t get on the Don’s wavelength

      Me too – I got 2 answers today, couldn’t see past any of the others http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_wacko.gif

  14. We agree with DT’s ***/***. By no means a write-in but a nice diversion over a spot of lunch.

    14a probably favourite.

    Thanks to the Don and DT.

  15. You probably heard the pennies drop from where you are – buns, railroads, Oxford terms, night lights and fishing rods all had me scratching my head in frustration. Wonderful. Thanks to DG and DT.

  16. A pleasant and enjoyable way to start off a Friday – no ranting and raving over setters, editors, who’s cleverer than who etc….. As usual, The Don has given us a puzzle with all answers readily available from the clueing but some require a bit more thought than others. There were a couple in the running for my favourite but I’ll plump for 9d – v clever IMHO.

    Thanks to Mr Manley for the puzzle and to DT for his usual impeccable review.

    I have had a quick glance at Osmosis the centurion’s toughie – I think it may take me some time. Thankfully I have been shopping for the weekend wine, beer, wine etc……. Oh and some crisps – so I am all geared up for the big event.

    I hope you all have a great weekend and may the best team win. Now, where is my kilt……http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_whistle3.gif

  17. Reasonable difficulty today, I thought, must confess having to check the hints for 1D. Still not happy with cocky for reticent ! Thanks to setter and Deep Threat.
    A 2.5*/ 3* from me.

    1. A typo in your email address sent you into moderation – pesky keyboards with their Es and Ws next to each other.

  18. Thanks Jane, it’s always obvious when pointed out, n’est pas ? A cab driver’s brain is strong in only one area, obviously !

  19. Great fun, but over too soon: 2*/4*. I had 7d earmarked for favouritism, but 16a took the prize just at the death. And now that September’s here, my world-renowned recipe for a pie made from the little blighters will soon come back into its own (actually there is no recipe as such; l just make it up as l go along). Many thanks to The Don, and to DT for the review.

      1. No – don’t. You probably don’t need to worry about it as he filled in the paper work for a few days off so he, hopefully, won’t notice.

  20. After yesterday’s puzzle ? I found today’s solveable, but quite tricky ***/*** I have never heard wabbits called “buns” and the term “buss” was new to me, I was informed by my lady wife that it is an old Norfolk word? None-the-less very agreeable even if it made me a little 1d, liked 12d, 3d and 14a. Wicked & wicked ? It’s the way that you say them!! Thanks to DT and Giovanni for a few smiles ?

  21. Fortunately nowhere near as difficult as yesterday, but quite a bit of cogitation was required in places. A very enjoyable solve, with the usual smattering of classical/biblical references, and more humour than usual for a Friday possibly.

    The two which produced the widest smiles were 7d and 16a, so I’ll nominate those as joint-favourites.

    I’m not a rugby fan unlike the majority on here it seems, but I hope that those who are enjoy the 44 day marathon about to start.

    Many thanks to Giovanni and to Deep Threat.

    1. I’m sure that it won’t come as a surprise to anyone to know that I’m absolutely with you on not being a rugby fan.
      I do rather wish you hadn’t said all this ‘stuff’ goes on for forty-four days – I didn’t know that! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif

    2. Well, I love watching rugby, but I’m already fed up with the ridiculously overblown adverts that surround the ITV coverage.

  22. Just finished and found this one enjoyable and doable as opposed to yesterdays. There were tricky clues but the answers were always obtainable by wordplay or cryptic thinking.


    Thanks to setter and DT.

  23. I found some on the LHS to be a bit tricky. Never did get the “bun” answer, but why? I had so many letters. I also didn’t get 7d.
    I liked 14a, I got the “rod” early on, so that gave me the needed clue, and it’s my fave. I also liked 9d.
    Thanks to Giovanni and to Deep Threat for the hints and helping me finish.

  24. Very much enjoyed today’s offering following yesterday’s mess. Wasn’t that easy for me ( I still do not understand elevated American railway and I thought an old type of kiss was a peck or a snog!) Any way my rating is 3.5/4 Favourite 16A Thanks to DT for the review and I exhort you all to help carry them home tonight!

  25. Jolly good fun with just about the right amount of head scratching to give it, for me, 3 * for difficulty.
    Got there, unaided.
    Thanks Giovanni and DT

  26. Good afternoon all.

    This puzzle didn’t start off too promisingly and with only seven clues solved after two passes I feared a rerun of yesterday’s fiasco. Subsequently solutions went in slowly, not always surely, until I checked out with 2d. I may still be below par but completion strayed unambiguously into four star time.

    Although enjoying the puzzle overall I noted five (7d, 16a, 6d, 13a and 1d) I couldn’t fully resolve). 6d was a speculation and I still don’t understand the reasoning for 13a so I can only justify two stars for enjoyment. There were several good clues and I particularly liked 2d, 3d and 12d.

    1. Hi MRE,
      13a – the definition for ‘periods’ is ‘DAYS’. To get there, you start off with DELAYS (hold-ups) and then remove (seal off) the two letters that stand for the American elevated railroad (EL). Any clearer now?

        1. Nor did I – until I started doing the DT puzzles on a regular basis. Keep it stored away in the brain cells – it will likely hove into view again before very long (as CS mentioned at comment 10).

          1. Thank you Jane for explaining 13a! Did not know ‘el’ as elevated railroad in the US. I guessed ‘days’ but could not explain it!

            1. Same here.
              Too obscure
              ie never heard of that abbreviation and find it hard to accept that ‘seal off’ means ‘remove’

  27. I have put an application in for a new brain and hope my new glasses due next week will help. The poltergeist has ousted me from the cupboard under the stairs and I still cannot solve crosswords. Without my electronic super toy I would be completely lost. Thanks to DTand Giovanni. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cry.gif

  28. ***/***. A very interesting puzzle where I seemed to go rapidly through most of it to be held up by a few where I couldn’t explain my bung ins. So thanks to DT for enlightening me and the setter for a good work out.

  29. I found this one quite hard. The E side went in no trouble at all, but then ground to a halt and had to have some help with the hints! Of course things were not helped by my having put ‘tartan’ in for 2d which held things up considerably. 1d was also a mystery until I looked at the hint….again not helped by my assuming that colic does not have a k in it. I liked 12d…… Philistine….(it aint necessarily so!)….according to Gershwin!! An enjoyable puzzle, if a bit more taxing than of late ( with the exception of yesterdays which I failed to complete)! 3*3* with thanks to setter and to DT for the hints.

  30. After a complete nightmare yesterday, a bit of welcome relief. 18ac gave me some grief at the end, but all in all a nice end to the working week.

  31. 16a has to be our favourite for the great penny drop moment and 14a had us head scratching for a while. A really good puzzle that gave us much enjoyment.
    Thanks Giovanni and DT.

  32. It was a struggle but managed it at the end! Wondered what my answer for 16a had to do with rolls or cakes till the review revealed it to me so many thanks to DT for it. Enjoyed this solve which really tickled my brain cells – many thanks to Giovanni. My first one in was 19d and my last 14a. My favourite was 18a. 3*/4*. Back in Hyères. I popped in to say hello to Jean-Luc this morning…

  33. Very glad to see all the comments about yesterday’s ‘nightmare’ as had ground to halt with that and put aside (not looking at hints yet though!) to tackle this one instead. Finished without hints (though took quite a while to get there) but with a number of ‘don’t quite understand parsing’ answers that I was glad to read blog for reasons (most ‘doh’ being 3d ‘man on board’ – couldn’t see how Knight sat on company type board!). I liked 10a – had checkers enough to suggest hidden answer but was muttering ‘unch-aste’ for a while before the penny dropped! And 9a – amazing how you can split a long answer like that into ‘lego’ blocks and still have readable surface. Many thanks to Giovanni & DT.

  34. I haven’t had a chance to look at this yet, as I have a guest. I’ll get round to it and get back to you then, but in the meantime, here’s a message for you, Jane:

    Hi, Jane, PH here, sending his love and gratitude for your support. Just going through some new poems with TS. Late nights in London. It is like being 22 again. Sadly.

  35. Finally got round to this little gem from the Don after work tonight. Struggled a bit at first (probably due to over-Scotching on Friday night and all day Saturday) but teased out all the answers in the end. Fave was 3d, closely followed by 14a. Saturday’s unopened puzzle can wait until tomorrow, I have some (many) Zs to catch up on.
    PS I don’t care about the rugby, but spent Saturday in the pub and became engrossed in S Africa v Japan. What a game! I can’t remember enjoying a televised sporting event so much for ages. By the end, the entire pub was willing the Japanese on and the cheer at the death was quite remarkable for a football pub on the wrong side of the tracks in this football town.

  36. Good thing Framboise warned me about an obscure weapon in 7d as it helped get 21a and 13a.
    The right side was a lot easier.
    Thanks to the Don and to DT for the review.

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