Daily Telegraph – Page 741 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog

DT 25949

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25949

Hints and tips by Tilsit

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

Another Monday, another outing for our regular setter.  As usual, it’s the sort of puzzle designed to be kind to the newer solvers.  Sadly, another outing for one of my least favourite grids, with a lot of the answers containing two consecutive unchecked letters, which I personally consider unfair to solvers.  However the benign clues help here.

There’s the usual stock of cryptic definitions which either make you smile or wince.  Overall, the smile factor is very much in evidence, although a couple don’t quite hit the mark for me.

Black marks to the Telegraph website, I only managed to get in about an hour ago, and the interactive filling is not as smooth as normal.  Another black mark to 15 across which should have the number indication 3-3-5,4 rather than 13,4!  [This has now been changed to (3,3,5,4) although (3-3-5,4) would have been more accurate.  BD]

Anyway, on with the motley and let’s go…..  As usual, the solutions are hidden for you to highlight to reveal the answer.  Please feel free to leave any comments, but if it’s your first time, it can take a little while for your first post to appear.  It just prevents those naughty spammers from invading the board.

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DT 25948 – Hints

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25948 – Hints

Selected hints by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ****

I really enjoyed this Saturday puzzle, and I hope that those girls and boys names and obscure towns are gone forever.

There is an expectation that the Saturday prize puzzle will be more difficult than the weekday ones, but this has certainly not been the case in the Telegraph in recent years.  Being cynical, I suspect that this is a marketing ploy designed to sell more copies of the newspaper!

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, 11th June.

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ST 2486 – Review

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2486 – Review

A full analysis by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

Another enjoyable Sunday puzzle, just right for sitting in the garden with a schooner of sherry in one hand and a pencil in the other!

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Toughie 159

Toughie No 159 by Excalibur

This one makes the others look good

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment **

For some sadistic reason the price we have to pay for getting an Elgar puzzle every fortnight is one of these on the Fridays in between.  While there are some good clues, the whole style irritates me – silly words and phrases and wordplay where the normal order of words is sacrificed in a futile attempt to achieve good surface reading.  That it only achieves three stars for difficulty owes a lot to the fact that I have become used to the style.  Roll on next Friday!

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DT 25947

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25947

Hints and tips by Libellule

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

I started with the cryptic definition at 26a, and then moved round the crossword solving clues anticlockwise. All in all another very enjoyable and entertaining Friday crossword. Remember – if you want to see the answer, just highlight the text inside the {} curly brackets

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DT 25942 – Review

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25942 – Review

A full analysis by Peter Biddlecombe

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

An extra enjoyment star as I liked this more than most Saturday puzzles.  The grid is sound with one small reservation – the NW and SE corners are a bit isolated, and swapping the lengths of 12 and 13 (and of course 22 and 23) would fix this.  There are no placename answers, just a couple of islands in wordplay.  There are still arbitrary people – three ladies (Anne, Crystal, Lizzie) and one gent (Gus).  There are a few tricky answer words, including 6D and 11A, so their crossing might be a tricky area.  Surface meanings are mostly good, and I only found four cases of “surface padding”.  Curiously, all the 3-letter answers have a U in the middle, and none of them have to – I don’t know whether this is significant.

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Toughie 158

Toughie No 158 by Giovanni

Hints and tips by Tilsit

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

Quite a tough puzzle today from Giovanni, but still very enjoyable.  Some nice clues to draw you into the puzzle, and then some mind-stretchers to make you think.  No really unusual words but good fair cluing providing a good challenge.  As usual, all the clues have excellent surface readings and if you aspire to be a setter, studying these will no doubt help you.

Thanks to Giovanni for a thoroughly enjoyable challenge.

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DT 25946

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25946

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

This is an agreeable puzzle with a number of entertaining clues. It contains one word which was new to me, but it’s not too difficult to get it from the wordplay and the checking letters.

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Toughie 157

Toughie No 157 by Cephas

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

There are two French phrases in this one, which may re-open the debate about how legitimate this is – feel free to contribute your views via a comment. There are also several obscure (to me anyway) words included, but you would not want a Toughie to be too easy would you? On the plus side it contains several very entertaining clues and I enjoyed it.

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