DT 26200 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26200

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26200

Hints and tips by Rishi

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

[This will be the last review from Rishi for a while as he is taking a break due to family and business commitments.  I would like to thank him for the enlightenment he has brought to crossword solving over the last few months, and hope that he will be able to return later in the year.  Libellule will be in this spot from next Monday.  BD]

An easy outing! Actually I solved this crossword while travelling in a public transport known as autorikshaw on public thoroughfares here in Madras that is Chennai, India, to fulfil a private engagement in a different part of the city away from my home.

I especially liked 19a, 3d, 16d and 22d for their excellent surface reading. I also liked 1a, 11a, 17a, 19a, 31a, 2d and 6d for their smoothness.

Some like 25a, 29a and 21d and 25d, we have met before many times if we are veteran solvers.

The answer tucked away under each clue will show up if you highlight the white space between the curly brackets.


1a Is in control of distant armies abroad (13)
{ADMINISTRATES} – Anagram (‘abroad’) of DISTANT ARMIES. Definition: ‘Is in control of’

10a A second coffee maybe (7)
{INSTANT} – Double definition – A second/ [variety of] coffee

11a Attic studio ideal for this artist? (2,5)
{EL GRECO} – Cryptic definition – The name of a Greek artist – That he is Greek is alluded by the word ‘attic’ which means ‘of Athens’. I remember the phrase “attic shape” from Keats’s Ode on a Grecian Urn.

12a Boss sounds a toff (4)
{KNOB} – A word that means ‘boss’ is a sound-alike of a word for a ‘toff’ or gentleman.


13a University can reject English couple (5)
{UNITE} – Word sum of a single-letter abbreviation for University + reversal of a word for ‘can’ (in the sense of ‘box’) + a single-letter abbreviation for English. Definition: couple (as a verb).

14a One who refused to accept tyranny and work in a bank (4)
{TELL} – Double definition – One who refused to accept tyranny. Reference to the legendary marksman William TELL, who fought against a tyrannical reeve in Uri.

17a The peace subsequently broken by the French (7)
{SILENCE} – LE, the French for the English ‘the’, inserted in a term for ‘subsequently’ yields a term for ‘peace’. Well, with the answer-word you can buy peace. If you talk and especially overtalk or make noise, this may be lost!

18a Strait-laced girl enters into the joke (7)
{PURITAN} – Definition: ‘Strait-laced’. Name of a girl inserted in a term for ‘joke’.

19a Notice cut out and displayed (7)
{PARADED} – A term for ‘notice’ inserted in a term for ‘cut’ (v. in past tense) = a term for ‘displayed’. ‘[O]ut’ indicates that the word for ‘cut’ is outside of the term for ‘notice’. ‘Notice’ not in the sense of ‘observe’ or ‘see’ but in the sense of a public announcement for a product that may be made in a newspaper or over the radio or TV or any other media. The term for ‘displayed’ could relate to the sort of show that is made by the military or fashion models. 

22a Store up trouble for travelling performers (7)
{TROUPES} – Anagram (‘trouble’) of STORE UP – Definition: [groups of]travelling performers

24a Wine for lady with an accent? (4)
{ROSÉ} – If you add a required accent mark to the last letter of a female name, you get the term for a variety of wine.

For lady with an accent?

25a Too much interest is shown in it (5)
{USURY} – Cryptic definition – A term for the grasping nature as shown by a moneylender with high charges of interest

26a Free from any sound of disturbance (4)
{UNDO} -A term for ‘free’ (as a verb) is hidden in ‘sound of’. The word ‘disturbance’ does not yield any letter for the telescopic answer word but I don’t mind it at all because the clue sentence is so beautiful. Incidentally, ‘free’ is an adjective in the surface reading but as the definition for word required, it is a verb.

29a A short month on a Roman road for Antony’s wife (7)
{OCTAVIA} – Word sum – A short form of a month + A (a) + Latin term for ‘road’ produces the answer which is the name of (Mark) Antony’s (fourth) wife

30a Name one variety of flower (7)
{ANEMONE} – Anagram (‘variety of’) NAME ONE. Definition: flower.

31a It’s said to get things done in the army (4,2,7)
{WORD OF COMMAND} – Cryptic definition for parade order


2d Plunder piled so haphazardly (7)
{DESPOIL} – Anagram (‘haphazardly’) of PILED SO. Definition: ‘plunder’

3d Country artist with an outstanding level of intelligence (4)
{IRAQ} – A two-letter abbreviation for Royal Academician (‘artist’) inserted in a two-letter abbreviation of Intelligence Quotient. Definition: Country

4d Concentrated in time for a grammar lesson (7)
{INTENSE} – Definition: Concentrated (as an adjective). Word sum of IN (obtained without any work on our part) + ‘time’ in a grammar lesson – the form of a verb to indicate the time of the action.

5d Peter scrambled round to the highest branches (7)
{TREETOP} – TO inserted in anagram (‘scrambled’) of PETER. Definition: the highest branches [of a tree]

6d Freight unopened in Jason’s ship (4)
{ARGO} – A word for ‘freight’, if written without the initial letter, is the name of Jason’s ship, which is the definition.

Jason's ship

7d A high spot for the first mate, and others (7)
{EVEREST} – The name of the first mate, that is Adam’s wife + a term that means ‘others’ = a high spot, a mountain in other words.

A high spot

8d Down with psittacosis? (4,2,1,6)
SICK AS A PARROT} – ‘psittacosis’ is a contagious viral disease associated with birds such as parrots. The answer phrase might describe the condition of a person incapacitated with this ailment, but is an expression often used by someone who has just lost, for example, a football match.

9d They’re not the type to settle for a band (7,6)
{ROLLING STONES} – Cryptic definition – The name of a musical band (its songs were popular in India too) is derived from the plural form of a term for a type that won’t settle but will keep on moving from place to place

15d A poem of positive significance as a rule (5)
{ANODE} – A word sum of AN (A) + poem. Definition: of postive significance

16d The offence of one coming to light (5)
{ARSON} – Cryptic definition – A criminal activity that burns things – ‘light’ here is what issues forth from flames

20d Its root may be made into a stew (7)
{RISOTTO} – Definition: stew. Anagram (‘may be made into’) of ITS ROOT.

21d Women’s work for girl employees (7)
{DISTAFF} – Definition: Women’s work. Word sum of a short name for a girl + a collective noun for ‘employees’

22d Ran round in the commotion caused by a storm (7)
{TORNADO} – Anagram (‘round’) of RAN in a word that means ‘commotion’. Definition: storm

23d Card game — bridge perhaps? (7)
{PONTOON} – Double definition – Card game / [a kind of] bridge

27d Eager to behead the king of Israel (4)
{AVID} – Removing the first letter from the name of the King of Israel gives the answer. Definition: Eager

28d Wooden support for the shaft (4)
{BEAM} – Double definition – Wooden support / shaft [of light]

Wooden support

What was your experience with this crossword? Did you also breeze through it? Did any component in the wordplay of a clue pose a difficulty that vanished when you read the hints here? We don’t reveal the answers but we do give them!

Leave a comment telling us what you thought. You can also add your assessment by selecting from one to five stars at the bottom.

46 comments on “DT 26200

  1. My Monday brain gave me a bit more trouble on this puzzle than was strictly necessary. The amount of times that I tutted to myself when filling in an answer that I had been staring at for ages was quite staggering.
    1d and 8d were my favourites.

    Thanks to Rishi and Rufus!.

    1. I have the same problem on a Monday… maybe there’s a medical term for it?
      Nice crossword; thanks Rufus!

    2. Liked 8d a lot but still having difficulty with 1d.

      Many thanks Rishi for all your hard work with the hints, and Rufus of course.

  2. I nearly finished this on a form of public transport known as Arriva Trains Wales.

    Quite enjoyable.

    11a – I got the answer but did not know why it was the answer. You have educated me.

    20a and 8d are old chestnuts.

  3. Rishi,
    You’ve repeated the answer for 5d in 7d. The “first mate” in 7d is Adam’s wife.

  4. Very easy, not much to comment on. Favourite clues were 8d and 16d.

    Thanks very much for your contributions over the past few months, Rishi.

  5. The traditional Monday morning masterpiece from Rufus. Great fun to solve and not too taxing on the groggy brain cells. Favourites were 19a, 7d, 8d and in top place 9d. Many thanks to Rufus for the puzzle.

    Rishi, many thanks for all your comments and blogs over recent months. Hope that you will be back soon!

  6. I really enjoyed this, nice start to the week with a few smiles along the way. Fav clues 8d, 7d and 14a.

  7. Bye for now Rishi, hope your family commitments don’t keep you away too long, finished quite easily today but got stopped at the post by 25a! fav clues 7d, 8d, 17a, 18a

  8. Got halfway there on my own, plus another half-dozen guessed or from Rishi’s hints, but quite a few today were too subtle for this CC’er.

  9. A fine start to the week with educational clues(11a) and a good mix of chestnuts and new ones.
    I liked 24a, simple but rewarding in execution.

  10. Ooh!. I missed BD’s annotation at the top.
    Many Thanks for all your Monday works, Rishi. Hope to catchup with you here or elsewhere!

  11. thanks for the explanation on 11a -got it but didn’t know why!! Thanks Rishsi for your help ov er the last months!

  12. I managed this one without very much trouble, feeling quite pleased with myself, also did the herculis .

  13. Good Monday crossword, I especially liked 1a and 11a. Thanks Rishi for all the reviewsand as we say in Scotland “Haste ye back”

  14. Easy peasy to start the week. 11a – I got the answer but did not know why it was the answer. Thanks for the explanation. Liked 13a, 8d and 16d Haven’t we had 18a recently?

    1. From DT 26192 (19th March)

      17a Joke about female being educated prig? (7)

      To be fair, crosswords are usually submitted by the setter a month or more in advance.

    2. Yes, we had 18a as recently as DT 26192 when the clue was:
      Joke about female being educated prig? (7)

  15. Very enjoyable even if the last 4 clues proved very tricky but all was revealed as soon as I got my sluggish brain in gear for the band who just happen to be my favourite band! :-)
    And although I got the answer I am grateful to the blog for the explanation of William Tell.

  16. Quite an easy start to the week, although whilst the answers to 11a and 4d were obvious with some cross letters, the full meaning of the clue evaded me until I read the blog. Even now I am unsure whether El Greco was Greek or if he was Spanish with a name meaning The Greek.

  17. Like most folk I got 11a but did not fully know why. But Rishi can you explain again why ‘attic’ = ‘Athens’

  18. Thanks for all your reviews Rishi.

    A nice walk through today – my interprretation of 16d differs slightly Rishi – “one coming to light” is a person who commits the offence, maybe?

  19. Enjoyed the crossword at lunchtime but I can’t get to grips with 31a… *o*d of *o*m*n*d [which I deduce is command]. I’ve either got some letters wrong or I can’t get my head around it; or both. Anyone, any tips?

    1. Charlie

      Welcome to the blog. The answers are hidden. To display them just select the space between the curly brackets with your mouse!

  20. I enjoyed this and managed all bar one (25a) without using any books. (I did however look up psittacosis on google!). As ever thanks for the explanations of those I got but wasn’t sure why!

  21. Did all but one clue without using the blog – and would you believe it was 26a that I had left?! Gave myself the biggest kick! Enjoyed this crossword, i seemed to be on the setter’s wavelength. One to boost the confidence of us in the CC!

  22. My worst attempt for quite some time . I was not on the same wavelength as the setter nor those who found it easy. I thought 8d a pointless clue -if you knew or looked up psittacosis then the answer was easy -if you didn’t it was nigh on impossible.
    I’d like to know if nayone got 31a without any crossing letters – imo it didn’t give much of a clue to the answer.

  23. I must add my gratitude to Rishi for his blogs, always fair and with any criticism constructive. He mentioned he has been solving my syndicated puzzles for the last 40 years in the Indian papers – so he definitely needs a break – make it a pleasant one Rishi! Many thanks!
    With slight trepidation I look forward to Libellule taking over – but his/her comments that I have seen have always been fair!

    1. Rufus,
      Just for information Libellule is a he. I am looking forward to taking over the Monday blog, as I have enjoyed solving your crosswords for many years. See you on Monday!

  24. Enjoyable but not very difficult puzzle.
    Got the 13-letter quad out of the way first then the 4-letter octad (some of which were quite good). Then got into the core and walloped it off! Fair number of anagrams.
    I liked 11a, 14a & 34a. 8d, 9d & 15d.
    Shouldn’t the clue for 6a end in a ? ? One can construe the word play either way i.e. opened or unopened.
    TTFN Rishi – come back in the autumn.

  25. Started during commute in using black ink. Finished the rest coming home in red ink. Made me realise that I too was sluggish first thing judging from the amount of red writing! Nice crossword and very enjoyable to solve.

    1. Little Dave
      I would like to say that what you write reminds me of the time I started out.
      It was not on the Rufus syndicated 13×13 but another 13×13 probably from a London eveninger that was published in a hoary evening newspaper in Madras (which – I mean the newspaper – has now gone to a dusty death).
      Each day I would, at the most, get some six. answers. But the next day I would look up the solution and assiduously and diligently do dictionary work to see how the missing ones resolved themselves. It was in this sort of DIY mode that I learnt crossword solving.
      Like you I too have used (and still use) different colour inks so that I would know which entries were the last!

  26. I think I’m on my own in the dunce’s corner today. 3 1/2 I couldn’t do :(

  27. Can someone explain 19a please, I have the answer but don’t see how it works? I don’t find Rishi’s hint helpful.



    1. Putzi,
      Take an abbreviation for Advertisement (Notice) and put a word for ‘cut’ outside of it (‘cut out’). This gives a word for the definition (Displayed)

      1. I re-examined what I wrote earlier and I thought that it was not deficient in any manner. In any case, I have since elaborated my hint.

        1. Thanks very much gnomethang and Rishi!! All clear now, I was probably being a bit dim!


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