DT 26419 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 26419

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26419

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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

No doubt about it today – Ray T’s trademark clues are all here. There are a handful of the two-word answers which are a recent addition to his repertoire. A very enjoyable puzzle (for most of us!).

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


1a    Drink ale, imbibing volume before time (8)
{BEVERAGE} – a liquid for drinking is constructed by putting an ale around V(olume) and before a period of time

5a    Reserve head of state, admitted, is not thick (6)
{SPARSE} – put reserve or additional around (admitted) S (head of State) to get a word meaning not thick

9a    Skip first course to see film (4,4)
{DUCK SOUP} – a charade of to skip or avoid followed by a first course of a meal produces a classic Marx Brothers film

ARVE Error: need id and provider

10a    Boot that is needed following flood? (6)
{WELLIE} – this informal word for a boot is derived by putting the Latin abbreviation for “that is” after a verb meaning to flood or flow

12a    It helps to keep locks secure (4,5)
{HAIR SLIDE} – a cryptic definition of a hinged clasp worn in the locks

13a    Fish had an unpleasant odour (5)
{SMELT} – a double definition – a fish related to the salmon and an adjective meaning had an unpleasant odour

14a    Porridge and how to do it? (4)
{STIR} – two meanings – a term in prison or what you need to do while preparing porridge

16a    Model bird put on slap (7)
{PATTERN} – a model or template is created by putting a seabird after a slap or touch

19a    Belted out tune wrong way round after drink (7)
{SANGRIA} – belted out (a tune) followed by (after) a tune reversed (wrong way round) gives a Spanish wine punch with fruit and soda water or lemonade

21a    Naughty date in French street (4)
{RUDE} – a word meaning naughty is constructed by putting D(ate) inside the French for street

24a    Beasts try turning back regarding head of sorceress (5)
{OGRES} – thee beasts are a charade of a try reversed (turning back), a short word meaning regarding or concerning and S (head of Sorceress)

25a    Independent gives one rubbish about right (9)
{SOVEREIGN} – a word meaning Independent or autonomous is an anagram (rubbish) of GIVES ONE around R(ight)

27a    Possibly rum character (6)
{SPIRIT} – a double definition – something of which rum is an example and character or temperament

28a    Protect from rudeness about American by English (8)
{INSULATE} – a verb meaning to protect, possibly from cold weather, is derived by putting rudeness around A(merican) and before E(nglish)

29a    Left remains creating strikes (6)
{LASHES} – a charade of L(eft) and the remains of a fire gives strikes (with a whip)

30a    Dutiful, seeing Queen in opening of Royal Show (8)
{REVERENT} – a synonym for dutiful is built by putting ER (Elizabeth Regina / Queen inside R (opening of Royal) followed by a show


1d    Initially believers, usually devoted, deem him ‘awakened’ (6)
{BUDDHA} – in this all-in-one clue, the initial letters spell out the founder of a religion of spiritual purity

2d    ‘Two Little Boys’ one has to suffer! (6)
{VICTIM} – the shortened versions of the names of two boys combine together to give one who has to suffer

Especially for Crypticsue

ARVE Error: need id and provider

3d    Knocks receiving small scrapes (5)
{RASPS} – put a word meaning knocks around (receiving) S(mall) to get scrapes or scratches

4d    More ostentatious German car’s kept inside (7)
{GAUDIER} – an adjective meaning more ostentatious comes from GER(man) with a German car inside

6d    Smooth macho man means to undo clothes (5,4)
{PRESS STUD} – a charade of to smooth or iron followed by a macho man gives a means to undo (or do up) clothes

7d    Underwent again embracing sweetheart and broke up (8)
{RELIEVED} – put a word meaning went through again, in one’s imagination, around E (swEet heart)

8d    After flat, can start to gallop, horse-riding (8)
{EVENTING} – a charade of flat or level, a can and G (start to Gallop) an equestrian sport in which competitors must take part in each of several contests

11d   Look up and down (4)
{PEEP} – a palindromic word (reads the same up and down in a down clue) meaning to look

15d   Revolving mechanism for fans (9)
{TURNSTILE} – a revolving mechanism that allows one fan at a time to gain admission to a football match

17d   Support American in El Paso, perhaps (8)
{ESPOUSAL} – the act of supporting a cause comes from an American inside an anagram (perhaps) of EL PASO

18d   Guts involves taking runs… (8)
{ENTRAILS} – a synonym for guts or internal organs is generated by putting a word meaning involves around R(uns)

20d   …as well as getting left with duck (4)
{ALSO} – the definition here is “as well” and it is derived by putting AS around L(eft) and finally O (duck / a score of zero in cricket)

21d   In anger, even getting satisfaction (7)
{REVENGE} – hidden inside the clue is satisfaction that is best served cold!

22d   Outburst from one stuck in traffic (6)
{TIRADE} – an outburst is created by putting I (one) inside (stuck in) a word meaning traffic or commerce

23d   Gamble like this, having lost one’s shirt? (6)
{INVEST} – to gamble by taking a risk is not usually the best way to so this! – split as (2,4) it could mean not wearing a shirt

26d   Playboy’s grand inside, it makes one’s cheeks red! (5)
{ROUGE} – put a playboy or libertine around G(rand) to get a cosmetic that makes one’s cheeks red

Marginally tougher than today’s Toughie?  What do you think?

55 comments on “DT 26419

  1. Great fun to solve. I found this one tougher than the toughie though – either Ray T has upped the ante or Kcit has taken pity on us!

    Many thanks to Ray for the crossword and BD for the review.

  2. Very enjoyable, though last clues to go in were all in the west for some reason. 9a also a favourite among many others. Thanks RayT and BD

  3. Enjoyable, but *** seems high for difficulty; I downloaded a few minutes after midnight, and finished it by 00:**.

  4. Once I had put in “sees” for 11d, I was stymied. Convinced myself that “sittern” was a word meaning to apply make-up!

  5. A very nice Thursday Ray T, I thought. I liked 9a and 10a but not 2d because it made me start singing that song! Thanks to Ray and BD.

  6. I enjoyed this one so thanks to Ray T.
    Favourite clue has to 18a as I was drinking a glass with lunch!
    In view of Prolixic’s comment above I’m now off to try the Toughie!

  7. Typically RayT and none the worse for it, most enjoyable crossword. Loved 9a and 10a. Many thanks to RayT and to BD for the review.

  8. I found this a good, if challenging, puzzle. It took me a bit longer than usual but I did manage to complete it with the minimum of help. So thanks to Ray T and to Big Dave — I agree with the three stars. Don’t know if I dare face the Toughie. 9a was a lovely clue, but my favourites were 14a and 6d.

  9. Thanks to Ray T for another fine puzzle. Not sure about 10 as its normally spelt with a ‘y’. However I enjoyed the contest as i always do with this setter. Favourite 7d as it took me ages after the rest. Also liked 1a 1d 4 5 9 17 19 25.

  10. It´s snowing on the blog, and here in Valencia it´s a more than pleasant 20 plus degrees and sunny. Sorry everybody who´s freezing in England, but we just had lunch outdoors!

    Nice crossword today, though until I read the hints, I couldn´t see why 10a was cryptic. Despite having the right answer, I waited ages before putting it in as I thought it was too easy.

    1. I like 10a as it’s a sort of all in one. The wordplay works as BD described to give the answer but also the wellie is, of course, the boot you need after a flood. Clever!

  11. Thanks to Ray and to Big Dave – a lovely Thursday treat. My only query was ‘relieved’ for ‘broke up’ but I anticipate that those of you not in anoffice, without access to a dictionary, will tell me Chambers has it …

  12. Hi Dave, just two days off and my mind was just not in crossword mode today! Had loads of help off blog or I wouldn’t have perservated today :) However did like 2d and 9a, energy levels low after a brilliant time in Cardiff, Diversity were well worth going to see (they are a street dance group, who won Britains Got Talent last year) and a vist to Techniquest yesterday (4hrs!) finally depleted all my remaining energy, two days with 3 of the grandchildren and another ‘Big Kid’ more than enough :)

  13. Definitely not on RayT’s wavelength today. Finished it, finally but grateful for explanations, like Droopyh didn’t understand 7d until B.D.’s blog. Thanks to RayT and B.D. No particular favourite, and didn’t really enjoy this one, my mind is on other things i.e. snow, snow and snow!!

  14. Thoroughly enjoyable once I managed to get onto the right wavelength. Agree the 3*. Many favourites
    today but 6D the best. Got 9A and hoped it was OK but no idea it was a Marx Brothers movie.
    Thanks to setter and Big Dave for the hints.

  15. Very enjoyable, although I did find this trickier than normal – perhaps due to spending 10 hours yesterday on my feet in the labour ward.
    Baby Sophia finally made her appearance at 11.40pm last night, after a somewhat ‘traumatic’ afternoon, and evening. Mother and daughter are fine, and I have just brought them home from hospital. Joseph is excited with his new baby sister, Mrs J is excited because her sister is here from Marrakech, and Mr J is excited at the very soon to be popped bottle of Crystal ! :)

    1. Hi Jezza & Mrs J congratulations on the arrival at long last of your baby daughter Sophia, what a lovely name, enjoy all the celebrations, don’t drink too much Jezza, aren’t you on ‘Night Duty’ ??? :)

    2. Fantasitic news. Congratulations to you both and to Sophia on her safe, if delayed, arrival.

    3. Absolutely nothing left to say – I just echo all the above comments – beautiful name. Congratulations :grin:

    4. Congratulations to the whole family. A long wait for Sophia to arrive but worth it, I’m sure. Hope she sleeps well at night.

    5. Many thanks from all of the Jezza family to all you lovely people for all of your kind comments over the last few days – it really is very much appreciated. Little Sophia has slept all afternoon, probably after the exertions of yesterday, so I guess she will be waking up just as we are getting ready for bed :)

  16. Thought I was ancient ( I am ) but don’t remember the film for 9a. Liked 6d the best.
    Thanx to Setter and BD.

  17. WOW I actually enjoyed this one and managed about half before I had to seek help. Don’t quite understand 24a, doesn’t ergo mean ‘therefore’? never heard used as ‘try again’ or have I got hold of the wrong end of the stick (again!).
    Loved the top L corner, esp 9a and 4d, very clever, always been a fan of the Marx Bros. Got the very last one wrong, I had indebt DOH! Still for a Ray T quite doable for me which is probably a first. :-)

    1. 24a Is Go reversed (try turning back) + RE (regarding) + S (head of sorceress) to give an answer meaning beasts. You don’t need to use the Latin ERGO, though perhaps Ray T will tuck it away for a future clue!

      1. Thanks for that, now I understand! Thx to all who produce this remarkable blog, it is much appreciated esp by those of us in the CC.

        1. Barrie I thought you got out of the CC a while ago????????? You are not allowed back in you know, no matter how hard you try! :)

  18. A real Ray T puzzle – great. Started very late as another busy day. 7d and 30a both took me a long time and I needed the hint to understand 30a – now I can’t see why I didn’t see it to begin with – dim again! Probably too many lovely good clues to mention individual ones but if I had to they would certainly include 9a and 6, 18 and 26d. A bit warmer in Oxford today but hardly tropical – a better way of putting it would probably be a bit less cold – up to +3C this afternoon.

  19. Oh dear – no manners AGAIN! Many thanks to Ray T for the usual great crossword and to Big Dave for the hints.

  20. A very enjoyable XWord today! Not too easy, not too difficult! Lots of amusing clues. Favourites: 9a, 10a, 19a but best for me 15d.

    Made the mistake of playing “Two Little Boys” on BD’s review! When will it stop going thru my head?

    But back to cricket:-

    Rolf Harris, Sir Donald Bradman, Evonne Goolagong, Sir Robert Menzies, Germaine Greer.Your boys took one hell of a beating!

  21. NE corner was tricky – best puzzle of the week and thanks to Ray T.

    Franco – so beautifully put. Roll on Perth. Ponting’s glum face is a picture.

  22. Thanks to BD for the review and to all for the kind comments, especially to Barrie! I never thought that I’d see the day…

    Ray T

  23. Howls of protest or not, I would have gone for 2★ (or maybe 1.5) for difficulty on this one. However, it was an enjoyable, if all too brief, experience (I’m sure I’ve heard that somewhere before…)

    Some less obvious words and phrases here, eg 9A, and it’s always nice to read a clue that’s supposedly about a rival publication (25A). 26D was a very nice clue, and there were several others too.

    Many thanks to Ray T, and also to BD, of course.

  24. Excellent crossword today. Got there without help but only just. Too young to know the film in 9a but still a nice clue. Lots of great clues and, for me, some v tricky ones. 23d made me chuckle, v Ray T. Thursday always the best. I was out tonight and did it on the train out and home. No pen but a blunt pencil was made to work I was that keen to tackle the puzzle. It looks a mess though. Ta for the blog BD thankfully didn’t need it. Sleep well all. Over to you Drcross

  25. Unlke many,found this Ray T quite easy.Though I have never known EVENT as a verb,it was easy to work out from the wordplay.

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