Big Dave's Crossword Blog – Page 895 – Putting the words to lights – crossword clues explained in plain English

DT 26005

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26005

Let’s all play charades

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment **

If you enjoy playing charades, then this is the puzzle for you.  For the rest of us it was an average puzzle apart from the one or two new words.

You can add your assessment by selecting from one to five stars at the bottom of the post.

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Toughie 196

Toughie No 196 by Messinae

A bit of a mixed bag

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

A mixture of a number of good clues and some that are no longer in the first flush of youth!  It must be increasingly difficult to find new clues for four-letter words, and you won’t find many here, which is a shame as the rest of the puzzle was very enjoyable.  I know that there is always going to be someone to whom a clue is new, but most of you will have seen these before progressing to Toughies. Continue reading “Toughie 196”

DT 26004

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26004

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

At one stage, when writing this review, I suspected that there was another Clued Up cock-up in the 20d clue, and I even went so far as to go out and buy the paper, only to find that the clue there is identical. Apart from that it’s a fairly straightforward puzzle, though with two words which were new to me.
As usual the answers are hidden inside the curly brackets – select the white space to reveal them. Please take the time to vote for the enjoyment factor by clicking on one of the stars at the bottom.

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DT 26003

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26003

The Return of the Native

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

Back from my short stay in Stalag Luft Calderdale Hospital, where I staged a daring escape by making a small but serviceable glider from pee pots that were stashed in my secret store there.  With a good wind I was able to launch myself off the roof and soar majestically down the Calder Valley and landed safe and sound back in Hebden Bridge.

And after a weekend  allegedly recuperating, we have the Monday Maestro to tackle.  After last week’s plethora of double definition clues, we seem to have an abundance of cryptic definitions which you either love or hate.

I found today’s puzzle pleasant and the usual fine warm-up to the week, but I do have an issue that the answer to one of the clues is almost handed to you on a plate by the clue to the intersecting answer.  The answer is at 23 across and the clue at 21 down.  I just think it looks untidy and would it have made the puzzle ultra-difficult by letting 21 down read  “23 across-ed sheep tear about”?  The expression at 10 across is new to me, and there could have been an ambiguity at 8 down, but it is resolved by the subsidiary indications.  There are also issues with the use of “a”, which in some clues is essential, but in others is padding and would affect the clue’s surface reading if left out.

Let’s go……

Continue reading “DT 26003”

ST 2496 – Hints

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2496 – Hints

Selected hints by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ****

A friend, himself a setter, emailed me today and described this as “A crossword for connoisseurs”.  Who am I to disagree?   I have given hints for those which I think will cause the most problems.

At the bottom of the post you will see an array of five stars – use these to 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.

For the weekend prize crosswords I will select a few of the better clues and provide hints for them.  A full analysis of this puzzle will be available at 12.00 next Friday, 14th August.

Continue reading “ST 2496 – Hints”

DT 26002 – Hints

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26002 – Hints

Selected hints by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment: ***

A better-than-usual prize puzzle that, for me at least, was a little spoilt by cluing a place as “in France” when the place concerned has historical significance that surely could have been worked into the clue.

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.

As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, I will select a few of the better clues and provide hints for them.  Peter Biddlecombe’s full review of this puzzle will be published at 12.00 on Thursday, 13th August.

Continue reading “DT 26002 – Hints”

ST 2495 – Review

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2495 – Review

A full analysis by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ****

There’s little more I can say about the Sunday crosswords.  If you had to choose just one puzzle each week you could not go wrong with this one.

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Toughie 195

Toughie No 195 by Notabilis

Elegance exemplified

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ****

If you don’t understand the wordplay in one of the Toughies from Notabilis, then keep looking.  As ever the clues are faultless, and the puzzle is correspondingly enjoyable. Continue reading “Toughie 195”

DT 26001

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26001

Hints and tips by Libellule

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

An interesting puzzle today, but thankfully it is nowhere near as difficult as yesterdays. A number of accessible clues that allows access to the rest of the crossword by providing some of the relevant checking letters. There is the usual nice mix of well defined clues, and at least two or three that raise a smile. All in all a nice pleasant ramble after yesterday’s workout. 10a is a new word for me today.

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DT 25996 – Review

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25996 – Review

A full analysis by Peter Biddlecombe

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A fairly straightforward puzzle except for the obscurity at 10A which took me as long as the rest of the puzzle. I’m not keen on puzzles with one stinker clue like this after 29 easy ones – if, as I did, you already knew about orfes, peccadilloes, Lethean and Salieri.

When you read this I should be pedalling my bike about halfway between Tring and Limehouse, so I’ll respond to any feedback on Friday.

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