DT 25971 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 25971

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25971

Hints and tips by Libellule

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment **

Not sure about this crossword, maybe I got out of the wrong side of bed this morning, but I personally felt that this was somewhat 16a. and is only rescued by 18a. Comments appreciated as always.


1. Appointment of fool, one little good to country (11)
{ASSIGNATION} – A word sum. ASS (fool) I (one) first letter (little) of G(ood) plus NATION (country) for another word for appointment.

7. Solo passage can daze when being played (7)
{CADENZA} – An anagram of CAN DAZE (when being played) is a complex solo passage in a piece of music.

8. Composer and explorer getting home before lunchtime? (7)
{ROSSINI} – The explorer is Ross (who I assume is Sir John Ross, the arctic explorer, one of Barrow’s boys), IN (getting home) before I (one – lunchtime), gives another name, this time of an Italian composer best know for the opera “The Barber of Seville”.

10. & 11 Country air (8)
{NATIONAL ANTHEM} – Ho hum, a hoary old chestnut this one, a cryptic definition for a song that represents a country. La Marseillaise being the French example.

11. See 10 (6)

13. Listeners having worries start to feel put out (4)
{EARS} – take a word for worries, FEARS and remove (put out) the starting letter (start to) of F(eel), and you have a pair of listeners, usually found on the side of your head.

14. Trust given to someone who’s on the way? … (6,4)
{STREET CRED} – I assume this is a cryptic definition, take a shortened version of a word for trust, e.g. credibility, and a word for a road, and this gives a phrase used to define acceptability or popularity for something among younger people.

16. … as this person may be, though dull (10)
{PEDESTRIAN} – A double definition, for a person who you would find on foot on the above road, who could also be considered to be uninteresting.

18. Song of girl just met, no maiden (4)
{ARIA} – Possibly the best clue of the crossword – think of a song from West Side Story, remove (no) M(aiden) and you have another word for a song usually found in an opera.

21. Gym session’s beginning — first of all girl changes (6)
{ADAPTS} – Take first of all a girls name ADA and then add P(hysical) T(raining) (Gym) plus the beginning of S(essions).

22. Relieve American institution — provide one entrance at the back (8)
{MITIGATE} – The American institution in this case is the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, then add I (one) and GATE (entrance) for a verb that means to make less severe or harsh.

24. Girl, English and thin, followed by men (7)
{ELEANOR} – E (english), LEAN (thin), plus OR (Men as in Ordinary Other Ranks in the forces) is a girls name.

25. Get scared if fellow comes around (7)
{TERRIFY} – Fellow is TERRY (Eleanor’s boyfriend obviously), needs to be placed around IF, for another word that means to make very afraid.

26. Form for Year 2 not up to the highest standard (6,5)
{SECOND CLASS} – If you are not FIRST CLASS what are you?


1. Accountant’s car with corrosion showing up (7)
{AUDITOR} – A little bit of product placement, although I am not sure that they would be happy being associated with corrosion – car is AUDI, with ROT (corrosion) reversed (showing up) is also another word used to describe someone who examines accounts.

2. Older one entertained by Spanish gentleman (6)
{SENIOR} – The spanish variation of Mr., around I, is a person who is older.

3. People offering absolute security? You could find us arrogant (10)
{GUARANTORS} – An anagram (you could find) of US ARROGANT for persons who might make or give a promise for something.

4. Jaunty enchantress losing her head (4)
{AIRY} – An enchantress is a FAIRY, now remove the head, F – and you have an adjective that could mean merry.

5. Sort of disorder in, for example, fool being kept in (8 )
{INSANITY} – IN, then place NIT (fool) inside SAY (for example) describes a mental disorder.

6. I want nothing to do with the choice on offer in there somehow! (7)
{NEITHER} – An anagram of IN THERE (somehow) is not one or the other.

7. Prisoner given a time in holy building to think seriously (11)
{CONTEMPLATE} – CON (prisoner), then place A T(ime) in TEMPLE (a holy building) and you can now meditate on or ponder something at length.

9. I am suffering time delay — so job can’t be done thus? (11)
{IMMEDIATELY} – IM (I am) plus and an anagram of TIME DELAY (suffering), describes how you would like a job done, i.e without delay.

12. Excessively enthusiastic about the act? (10)
{LEGALISTIC} – Again I think this is meant to be a cryptic definition, but I leave you to judge whether it works. This word is an adjective used to describe someone or something that has a strict, literal adherence to the law.

15. One thus needs medicine such as an energy drink? (8 )
{ISOTONIC} – I, SO (thus), TONIC (medicine) describes a drink designed to replace the fluid and salts lost from the body during exercise. Lucozade for example (look I can do product placement too).

17. Storage boxes for artists (7)
{DRAWERS} – The first of a double whammy, you would find these in a dresser where you might place your clothes, and its also another word for artists or anyone in fact who might sketch something.

19. Gets prepared to offer money (7)
{READIES} – Just having got over the first one, here’s another. A slang term for money, or a word for making something available.

20. Ace is going the wrong way, mistake being admitted in mountain
range (6)
{SIERRA} – A and IS are going to placed in reverse (wrong way) around ERR (mistake) describes a high, rugged range of mountains that have an irregular outline somewhat like the teeth of a saw.

23. Architect upsetting some planner wilfully (4)
{WREN} – The architect of St. Paul’s Cathedral is hidden carefully and in reverse (upsetting) in “planner willfully”. Maybe its just me, but just for coincidence, wasn’t there a mention of Pudding Lane in the Toughie yesterday?

8 comments on “DT 25971

  1. Bonjour Libellue, I had to go to your explanation of 22a to get what MIT stood for, if it hadn’t have been for the checked letters I wouldn’t even have got MIT, one for the Toughie perhaps!. 24a across had the undesired girls name, but surely the word soldiers could have used instead of men, went into Google and looked up OR and came up with a rather showy girly site!. Have to agree best was 18a and the hidden WSS.

    1. Bonjor aussi Kram, nice of you to drop by. I guess 22a is one of things you either know or don’t. Re. Ordinary Ranks or rather OR, its one of those acronyms that you get used to, and you see if its applicable depending on the clue. There are plenty of others you get used to too :-)

      1. Just to be pedantic (wasn’t it once said that pedants are welcome?), OR is abbreviation for “OTHER ranks”. I know I was one a long time ago!

        1. I have finally taken the plunge and got a subsctiption to Chambers…. and yup OR = other ranks (military). A quick google shows it as a fairly common mistake. Will correct the blog accordingly.

  2. I’d agree it was a bit 16A, especially after having done the day’s Toughie and Times. Nothing really gave me a zizz, but then I think (and it’s only my opinion) that generally after the others the Telegraph Cryptic falls a bit flat.

    Pedant’s time: the isotonic Lucozade is L Sport, whereas the original is L Energy (but now with extra flavour varieties).

    Don’t buy one if you want the other!


    1. Harry, I don’t do the Times, but I have done today’s Toughie. Today was a “bad” day in Telegraph Crossword land.

  3. Found this tricky. Got home early to watch Murray. Still a few to finish and frankly I am not in the mood now. I fancy a glass of wine instead in preparation of tomorrow’s challenge which hopefully will be better than the usual Saturday offering. I have just lost interest in the tennis but Cardiff next week (day 3 for me).

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