DT 26363 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26363

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26363

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

Well it’s Ray T’s turn today but I’m not totally convinced that this is one of his because it seems different from his normal style. He’s normally very good at dropping in to let us know, so let’s hope for a visit today. Meantime, your views, as always, are appreciated.
If you need an answer, you’ll find it hidden between the brackets under the clue. Highlight the space between the brackets to reveal it.

Across Clues

1a  Chemist quick to bandage injury (8)
{PHARMACY} – put an adjective meaning quick around (to bandage) an injury to make a chemist’s shop. My initial reaction to this clue was that the definition should be chemist’s rather than just chemist, but the chain founded by John Boot is known as Boots the Chemist.

5a  Moan about having to guard silver dish (6)
{HAGGIS} – reverse (about) a type of moan and put the chemical symbol for silver inside (to guard) to make a Scottish dish.

9a  Getting cold feet about degree that must be got by studying (8)
{DREADING} – the definition is getting cold feet about or anticipating with apprehension. It’s a charade of the abbreviation for degree and studying at university.

10a  Composition from ‘Peter Grimes’, on at Aldeburgh (6)
{SONATA} – hidden (from) in the clue is an instrumental composition.

11a  Forgive a bishop’s crack (7)
{ABSOLVE} – a verb meaning to forgive is formed from A, B(ishop) and a verb meaning to find an answer to (crack).

12a  Weakness shown by actor, initially one in cast (7)
{FAILING} – this weakness is the first letter (initially) of A(ctor) and I (one) inside a verb to cast or throw.

13a  Get rid of kitchen smells to relieve tension? (5,3,3)
{CLEAR THE AIR} – double definition.

16a  Show here cancelled? Argument about notice in recess ensues (3-8)
{OFF-BROADWAY} – the definition is “show here?” and it’s a location where theatrical performances, often experimental or non-mainstream, are put on. Start with a synonym for cancelled, and this is followed (ensues) by an abbreviated notice inside an argument, which in turn goes inside a recess in a building.

21a  Ecclesiast’s first religious book is a typical example (7)
{EPITOME} – start with the first letter of E(cclesiast) and add the abbreviated form of an adjective meaning religious and, finally, a large book. The whole thing means a typical example.

22a  The Parisienne below is to do the washing and ironing (7)
{LAUNDER} – combine the French, feminine singular, definite article and a synonym for below.

23a  Leave Virginia about ten, not noon (6)
{VACATE} – a verb meaning to leave (your hotel room, for example) is a charade of the standard abbreviation for the state of Virginia, the abbreviation for circa (about) and TE(n).

24a  Fight in ring (4-4)
{DING-DONG} – double definition (as well as being a Leslie Phillips catchphrase).

25a  Explosive noise over harbour (6)
{REPORT} – the noise of an explosion is a charade of a prefix meaning over or about and a harbour.

26a  Detain representative in plant in operation (8)
{IMPRISON} – a verb meaning to detain or lock up is a parliamentary representative inside a plant with large showy flowers, followed by a short word meaning working or in operation.

Down Clues

1d  Itinerant trader, one using a bike, we hear (6)
{PEDLAR} – this itinerant trader sounds like (we hear) a cyclist.

2d  Reluctant to provide a rhyme (6)
{AVERSE} – this is an adjective meaning reluctant. String together A and a section of a poem (which may or may not rhyme).

3d  Note what Lincoln has? (6,1)
{MIDDLE C} – this is a musical note. So we want a note which could be described by its position within “Lincoln”.

4d  Accomplice to fence a red model (11)
{CONFEDERATE} – we’ve reached the eighteenth clue before we get our first anagram (model) of TO FENCE A RED.

6d  Do away with seaman from Poland – cut head off (7)
{ABOLISH} – a verb meaning to do away with is one of the usual abbreviations for sailor followed by a description of someone from Poland without the first letter (cut head off).

7d  Weight of a vast rig at sea (8)
{GRAVITAS} – we want a word meaning weight or seriousness. It’s an anagram (at sea) of A VAST RIG.

8d  Such a disease in horses takes the breath away (8)
{STAGGERS} – a disease of horses and other farm animals also means, when used as a verb, astonishes (takes the breath away).

12d  What Harold did, reportedly, in a Scottish town (4,7)
{FORT WILLIAM} – this is a town in the Scottish highlands and it sounds (a bit) like what King Harold did, unsuccessfully, in 1066 in an attempt to defeat the Norman invader. Mention of Norman and the sad news, yesterday, of the death of one of our most popular comedians reminds me of a story which I think I’ve told before, but which bears repetition. At a session of the European parliament an MEP from Normandy was holding forth about a problem particular to his region and boasted “Ce problème sera résolu par la sagesse Normande”. He was then astonished by the laughter coming from those listening to the English translation who had heard “This problem will be solved by Norman wisdom”.

14d  Two extras as well (8)
{MOREOVER} – several of our usual correspondents may have groaned at the sight of this clue but it has absolutely nothing to do with cricket. The definition is “as well” and it’s a charade of two words both of which can mean extra.

15d  Bang to rights, adult, one breaking into remote clubs before work (1,4,3)
{A FAIR COP} – this is a phrase uttered by many a villain in B-movies (normally preceded by “You’ve got me bang to rights. It’s” and followed by “guv!”). Start with A(dult), then put I (one) inside (breaking into) a synonym for remote, and finish with C(lubs) and an abbreviation meaning work.

17d  Bird torero’s cooked (7)
{ROOSTER} – an anagram (cooked) of TORERO’S.

18d  Not so old, one guy adrift on river (7)
{YOUNGER} – this is an anagram (adrift) of ONE GUY in front of (on, in a down clue) R(iver).

19d  Offensive, getting overdrawn on top of debts (6)
{ODIOUS} – the definitiion is offensive. Put the abbreviation for overdrawn (as may appear on a bank statement) in front of (on top of, in a down clue) promises to pay one’s debts.

20d  Beginning, in Ohio, to equip home (6)
{ORIGIN} – the definition is beginning and I thought at first that beginning was being asked to do double duty, but O is a legitimate abbreviation for Ohio. Follow this with a verb meaning to equip and finish with the usual crossword word for home or at home.

The clues I liked included 5a, 21a and 3d, but my favourite today is 16a. Let us know what you liked in a comment.

64 comments on “DT 26363

  1. It took me what seemed like ages to get started on this one, which made me too query whether it was a Ray T. However, I completed it in the usual time. Agreed with all your liked clues and 16a was my favourite too. Thanks to Ray (if indeed he) and Gazza.

    Toughie is proper tough today.

    1. Today’s Toughie? Tough but not half as tough as last Friday’s Toughie from Elgar! “If music be the food of love” – I will avoid the next Elgar composition!

      Recommend today’s offering from MynoT!

      1. Agreed it’s not as tough as Friday’s Elgar but it still required perservation, cogitation and a lot of lateral thinking and Gnome’s Law too.

  2. Good morning Gazza, I’m with you there about RayT, I even checked back last week to see if it was RayTs turn, something not quite him about this!? At first it seemed quite difficult with the top l/h corner and the bottom r/h corner first, the last two to go in for me were 5a and 8d, lots of clues I liked today 2d, 3d, 22a, 12d, 19d, a few I have done but am not sure why they are what they are so I’m off to read the blog now, thaks Gazza and RayT?? definitely a 3* at least for us CCers today :) Fav clue 3d

  3. I enjoyed this one! Like crypticsue it took a while to start – only 4 in after first pass but then it suddenly started to come together.
    No particular favourite but 16a is pretty good. First in was 13a which I like for its elegant simplicity.
    Thanks to Gazza for the review and to the setter.

  4. I went through this fairly confidently, and then stopped with 5a and 8d left to ponder for a while! I also wasted a couple of minutes trying to find a plant called an ‘IMIS’ in 26a, before I realised that I had the wrong ‘representative’!
    Thanks to setter, and to Gazza.

  5. I enjoyed todays puzzle, a lot of good and what seemed to be fresh original clues. Fav was 7d.

    Geoff is online there are two breweries in Wiveliscombe, Exmore and Cotleigh the latter being the better of the two. Cheers m’dears!..my luvver, my andsome. I think my Geordie accent is fading, time to get back home!

  6. Enjoyed this and finished all but one with no problems. My unsolved one was 8d. Never heard of this word as a disease in horses. Another new word learnt! Love the Norman Wisdom story Gazza. I have a French conversation session to-morrow and I shall make that my contribution.

  7. This took me ages to get started too and has probably ended up taking a bit longer to finish than usual. I thought it was quite difficult – perhaps a little bit more than 3* for difficulty. I needed the blog to understand 5a – spotted the silver but couldn’t work out the moan – just forgot to reverse it! I got in a real muddle with 8d as ‘Strangles’ is also a disease of horses – that was clearly not going to fit so had to have a little think about it – got there in the end! 14d had me scratching my head and swearing – MORE cricket!! WRONG!!! Just when I’m starting to think like that it isn’t! Favourite clues 16a and 12d. Thanks to today’s setter (? Ray T) and to Gazza.

  8. :oops: Now I understand 8d! although I had the answer right I was desperately trying to see what disease GGs (horses) fitted into to give us the answer!!!!

  9. Enjoyed this today but must say us Highlanders would only recognise 12d pronounced this way by a very plummy SE sassenach. Last clue in 5a! Thought it was this dish but couldn’t see the moan ‘return’ bit. Thanks to setter and blogger again.

    1. I concur with your remark about pronunciation.
      I am not a Scot – a Tyke by birth – but I lived for many years in The Beautiful Vale of the Leven – the second fastest river in Scotland after the Tay and worked for a long period in dear auld Glesca.
      Are you aware that the Gaelic Sassenach means Saxon and in the Garden Region of SE England there are probably few people with Saxon origins?

      Near where I live here in NL there is a village named Sassenheim which is the Dutch softening of Sachsenheim!

  10. Gazza,
    Like you, I am fairly sure that this is not one of Ray’s. Now having just done the quick over lunch with the wife, I would suggest its not. The quick does not have Ray’s trademark of single word questions.

      1. Mary,
        In terms of the author – I am not sure, re. the other issue, no she isn’t, however if she seriously considered it she might use demoiselle :-)
        From the french ditionary – damselfly n demoiselle f, libellule f.

  11. Regardless of the setter I enjoyed this puzzle today. Strange that the last area to complete was the top left and then the penny dropped. Enjoyed 16a, (having recently been there) and 6d.
    Thanks to setter and to Gazza. (not so many pictures or clips today).

    1. Pete,
      The number of visuals really depends on the clues. It’s almost impossible to provide visual hints for clues like 14d, 18d, 19d, etc.

  12. Enjoyed today’s puzzle. Like many, I struggled with 5a/8d. Favourite was 12d. Thanks to Gazza for the Norman Wisdom anecdote – he will be much missed – (especially in Albania!!)

  13. So close! Didn’t get 5a. Didn’t understand 3d either, doh!

    Couldn’t have been a Ray T, I could do it … Thanks to setter and Lbellule, fine puzzle and review.

    1. Geoff,
      I thought that you would have got 3d. Incidentally, even if you don’t try the rest of the puzzle, you ought to have a go at 6d in the Toughie which is very relevant for you.

      1. I did get it, Gazza. Is there anything else that could be 6,1 with the 1 being C? Had no idea what it had to do with Lincoln until I read the hint!

    2. Well done Geoff, now I agree with Gazza, you really should have got 3d :) as a musician of sorts, who has only been reading music a few years, even I got it! Now must go look at 6d in toughie, just to see

      1. Absolutely can’t get that, you have to go round the world of other clues to even start this!! no, no, not for me, how about you Geoff?

          1. So it does! Saw the anagram straight away. Think I’ll pass on the rest of the puzzle though!

    3. I though 5 a was hard too because i could’t see anything telling me to reverse the word for moan. For 3d – C is the middle character of LinColn.

  14. Lots of lovely clues today, 3 and 12d being my favourites. Like so many others a slow start but once on the go not too much difficulty, thanks to setter and Gazza. I don’t have the ability to identify one setter from another, one loves anagrams, but that’s about as far as I can go, so well done those who say ” No, this isn’t RayT” with such certainty!

  15. Thanks to our setter today – nice stuff. I particularly liked 12d both for the clue and gazza’s anecdote (so thanks to you too!). Dear old Norman Wisdom – Gawd bless you!.

      1. I love ‘trelk’. It sounds so much more more arduous. May I add it to the new word list? :-)

        1. Oops! Yes now we have the mysterious trelk through the cryptic crossword, which will probably take a lot more perservation and cogitation than normal! Thanks Franny :-D

  16. Rather a lot of padding in 5a, which was my last to go in. ‘Moan about guarding sliver dish’ would have sufficed, surely?

    1. The verbosity of some clues, and the multi-word clues in the Quick crossword , is how we know that Ray T didn’t set this one.

  17. Given the Toughie a miss today and did yesterday’s Grauniad Quiptic instead. Well worth a look and doable for CCers I should think.

  18. Ah – the mystery! Ray T, or not Ray T? Either way I thought it was a very fair challenge, and liked 3d even though I wouldn’t recognise one if I heard it. Perhaps the setter will reveal all later, but thanks to whoever it was, and to Gazza.

  19. Not much time today so this was a quick dip into the blog (if you can do such a thing!) to see what challenges lie ahead once I’ve finished work. On 1a when I worked at Boots we always referred to Jesse Boot never John Boot.

    1. John Boot opened a herbalist shop in Goose Gate, Nottingham in 1850. His son, Jesse, was not born until a year later.

  20. Well, I wondered if it was for a moment. In any case I started this happily early today but then had to go out and have only just got back to finish it. All went well until 8a where I really needed the hint. Many thanks Gazza. And for the tale of ‘sagesse normande’ which I’m sure the great Norman would have enjoyed also.

    Many enjoyable clues today but best for me was 12d. :-)

  21. The second gentle puzzle this week with some nice word play.

    I liked 5a, 11a, 16a, 3d, 8d, 12d &15d.

    Nice joke Gazza in your 12d blog!

    Not the usual Ray T at all.

  22. Have just done this having got back from work. It was a great puzzle for someone well and truly in the CC club, and I only needed help with 2d and 8d, so a real change from my usual Tuesday efforts. Thanks to the anonymous setter and to Gazza.

  23. Nothing to do with today’s Crossword, but…

    …I’ve seen references to the following clue on this website for a long time and have always wondered what the solution is?

    “Crossword Ends in Violence (5)”

        1. The relevance is that SWORD was the codename for one of the landing beaches in the D-Day invasion.

          1. Thanks, Gazza!

            How on earth do you work out all these things?

            How many other Crossword addicts/fanatics would have been able to arrive at the correct solution?

  24. I found this fairly easy to be honest 5a being my favourite (plus 15d). Struggled with the “quickie” though!

  25. Big Dave,
    Sorry to go off topic but, as you will see, I don’t think there’s any other way to post this.
    I’ve been using the blog for about 9 months and I notice that the number of comments has been increasing all the time. Various cyber-friendships seem to be developing and many of the comments turn into a conversation that is not really to do with the day’s puzzle. No problem with that at all, in fact it’s a lot of fun at times!.
    However, it seems to me that a ‘chat’ line, where anything can be discussed, would be a great addition to this site. A ‘forum’ is the term I believe? Is this possible within the WordPress software that you use? I could ask Pommette but she would blind me with science and I would be none the wiser at the end of the conversation.
    Just a thought. . . . . . . .
    Anyway, thanks for the site, the blogs, the people who post and thanks to everyone involved. You have, between you, made DT cryptic crosswords a lot of fun!
    I’ve spent 30+ years, on and off, doing them and usually ended with a couple or more clues that defeated me. Didn’t see the next day’s paper so didn’t see the answers and even if I did I might not understand the wordplay. Now I have someone to explain it all in simple terms I am learning rapidly and can now, occasionally, complete Toughies!

      1. Ok, , not surprising I suppose. But the site is getting so many comments that it now takes longer to read them, and the review, than it does to solve the crossword!
        Don’t get me wrong – I like it!
        As I said, it brings a lot of extra fun to the DT puzzle. It’s somehow more friendly when you can exchange views of particular clues and sometimes the setter himself contributes to the posts – even better!.
        – Aside – CluedUp gets a lot of stick but if it weren’t for that site I would have to drive about 4km and pay €3.50 per day to get the DT – the subscription is cheap in comparison and the site works most of the time!
        Thanks again BD

  26. Amazing I managed to finish it in under an hour again so your blog is really helping Big D! I thought it was quite difficult in parts. My favourite clue was 3d.
    I thought 16a and 15d rather involved although I got there eventually. But 5a- uggg – Unless I’ve missed it there’s no indication that you need to reverse the word for moan is there?

    1. The reversal indicator is “about”. I should have shown this in the hint, and I’ve amended it now.

  27. I found this quite sraightforward today, given the level of general harrassment in my life at the moment. Much, much easier than the toughie which I found exaspirating.

  28. Re 16a, it’s almost a brilliant 3-meaning clue. As it is, I think it’s a bit “off” (sorry, couldn’t resist). “off-broadway” is term meaning a NY show which is not on broadway, or not quite up to big league. The expression “it’s off broadway” could mean it was a show on broadway which has now been cancelled. Hence, the ? after “show here cancelled”. The 3rd part of the clue is the word play from “Argument… ensues”. Unfortunately what spoils the perfection is the lack of wordplay relating to the word “off”.

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