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DT 27509

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27509

Hints and tips by Deep Threat

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Buon giorno from Torre di Lago Puccini, in Tuscany, where the sun continues to shine. We went to Pisa yesterday and didn’t take a photo of me pretending to hold up the Leaning Tower.

The Don has marked today’s 70th anniversary of D-Day with a suitably themed puzzle, with several D-Day codewords and other WWII related items. I think, subject to correction, that the D-Day codewords are the ones which got the then Daily Telegraph setter into trouble when they appeared in his crosswords ahead of the event. Not too difficult today, and completed in ** time.

In the hints below, the definitions are underlined.

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           Crossing heather pass odd-looking little trees (8)
{ SAPLINGS } An anagram (odd) of PASS wrapped around a word for heather.

5a           Bad feeling from bishop leaving a cloud (6)
{ ANIMUS } Remove the chess symbol for a bishop from A(from the clue) and a variety of rain cloud.

9a           Boss going about in old Rover (8)
{ OVERLORD } The first of today’s thematic clues is an anagram (going about) of OLD ROVER.

10a         Servant still left attending Queen (6)
{ BUTLER } Put together a word meaning still or yet, Left, and the Queen’s regnal cipher.

12a         Ephemeral article is about to be submerged in river (9)
{ TRANSIENT } A form of the indefinite article and a reversal of IS from the clue (about) inside a Midlands river.

13a         Vigilant husband of Victoria, not British (5)
{ ALERT } Drop the British from Queen Victoria’s husband.

14a         Get rid of mould (4)
{ CAST } Double definition, the second being what you do with molten metal in a mould.

16a         Artist exhibiting pig paintings maybe by entrance to hotel (7)
{ HOGARTH } Put together a sort of pig, the generic description of articles such as paintings, and the first letter of Hotel, to get the producer of The Rake’s Progress and Gin Lane.

19a         University  library offers facility for this (7)
{ READING } Double definition: a university in the Home Counties; and what you can do in a library.

21a         Elegant fabric concealing article (4)
{ NEAT } A fabric full of holes with A inside it.

24a         US city given prestigious UK award — gosh! (5)
{ OMAHA } Another thematic answer. The initials of an honour given for high achievement in the artistic or scientific world followed by an exclamation such as ‘Gosh!’, giving a city in Nebraska.

25a         Job wasn’t quiet — it meant I worried about it (9)
{ IMPATIENT } Job here is the Old Testament patriarch. Anagram (worried) of IT MEANT I wrapped around the musical symbol for quiet.

27a         Strange old sweetheart needs love, twitching (6)
{ EXOTIC } Put together a former lover, the letter which looks like a love score at tennis, and a nervous twitch.

28a         Final words from a posh minister, one entertained by soldiers (2,6)
{ AU REVOIR } Put together A (from the clue), the letter signifying posh or upper-class, the abbreviated title of a minister of religion, and the Roman numeral for one inside the abbreviation for soldiers who are not officers.

29a         London’s No. 1 home — home given good protection (6)
{ LINING } The first letter of London, two instances of the two-letter expression for ‘at home’, followed by Good.

30a         Support journalist established in China (8)
{ PEDESTAL } The usual crossword journalist and an abbreviation for established, inside someone described by the Cockney rhyming slang expression China (plate). I thought this might be another thematic, but remembered that this was the codeword for a convoy to Malta in 1942.


1d           Freckled little son being toilet-trained it seems! (6)
{ SPOTTY } An abbreviation (little) of Son placed on (in a Down clue) the receptacle used for training infants.

2d           Pair beginning to enjoy wonderful home — temporary one? (6)
{ PREFAB } An abbreviation for pair, the first letter of Enjoy, and a 1960s word for wonderful, giving another answer with a WWII theme, though not particularly relating to D-Day.

3d           Passages sealed off at the top in British locations, say? (5)
{ ISLES } Remove the initial A from a word for the passages between banks of seats in a church or stadium.

4d           Maybe a jacket fellow’s hung over part of chair (7)
{ GARMENT } An item of clothing is made up of a fellow or chap wrapped around part of a chair, usually a more comfortable one.

6d           Ruin a leg, having to run around with a sort of pain (9)
{ NEURALGIA } Anagram (having to run around) of RUIN A LEG followed by A from the clue.

7d           Happy about university getting pounds — it should bear fruit (8)
{ MULBERRY } Thematic answer. A word for happy wrapped around University and the abbreviation for pounds avoirdupois.

8d           Like many an old record making one bad-tempered (8)
{ SCRATCHY } This word for bad-tempered is also a description of the typical sound of a 78rpm disc.

11d         Four members of that university set up in American state (4)
{ UTAH } Thematic answer. Hidden in reverse in the clue.

15d         Liveliness of one maiden in a race (9)
{ ANIMATION } Take a synonym for ‘a race’ and put the Roman numeral for one and the cricket scorecard abbreviation of Maiden inside.

17d         Living in trees in hole between a river and a lake (8)
{ ARBOREAL } A word meaning ‘make a hole’ between A (from the clue) River and A (from the clue) Lake.

18d         Mum to hum softly when chewing a biscuit (8)
{ MACAROON } Another diminutive form of ‘mother’ followed by the sort of singing Bing Crosby was known for wrapped around A from the clue.

20d         Member of film crew to complain endlessly (4)
{ GRIP } Usually seen in the credits at the end of a film prefixed by the word ‘key’, this film technician is also a word for complain or bellyache with the final E removed.

21d         Writer standing on head to make fine adjustments to heavenly body (7)
{ NEPTUNE } Thematic answer. Reverse (standing on head) a writing implement, and add a word for adjusting the sound of a piano or violin,

22d         The French profiteer is released from prison (3,3)
{ LET OUT } The French definite article, and a word for someone who profits from selling hard-to-get tickets to an event, for example.

23d         Waxy stuff coming from master, old (6)
{ STEROL } Hidden in (coming from) the clue.

26d         Those people taking priority over English subject (5)
{ THEME } A pronoun describing ‘those people’ followed by English.

The Quick Crossword pun { HEARTS }{ URCHIN } = { HEART-SEARCHING }

53 comments on “DT 27509

  1. Really enjoyed today’s offering from the Don and you’re right about the Daily Telegraph compiler who managed to get most of the landing beaches into the crossword in the run up to D-Day. In a bit of a hurry as we’re off to deepest darkest Devon for a week, hope they have a) The Telegraph and b) Electricity there.

    ps all the down clues were a straight write-in for me – not often I manage that

    1. It’s rumoured that one fellow had electricity installed, but they lynched him, so…….now it’s all hamsters in wheels.

        1. They’re like the conventional square rocks, but with the corners niftily chipped off. Less bumpy apparently and more economical on the hamster front.

        2. Great crossword from Giovanni, many thanks to him and to DT for the review.

  2. We did not notice the theme until we had finished the puzzle and just happened to be watching a special D-Day documentary on TV. The realisation sent shivers down both our spines. What a fitting tribute from Giovanni. Very much appreciated.
    Thanks Giovanni and DT.

  3. I am glad that this has (so far!) gone down well. The crossword editor is to be thanked for the special idea. Those who want two more thematic puzzles (quite different themes, which were my idea!) by me can look in The Guardian and The Independent tomorrow!

  4. Really appreciated the thoughtfulness of this puzzle in today’s context. Thank you setter. And thank you, DT, for explaining some answers which I’d filled in but not understood – d’oh! (So glad you avoided the usual pic of Pisa!) 10a made me smile. And Poppy has had a haircut so is now ready for the summer… Do I risk tomatoes this year? Greetings to all.

    1. Based on 2012, I know a lot of recipes for green tomatoes, Poppy, but let’s hope for the best.
      Question is, will I be able to grow chillies as well as, was it 2009? There are ways of punching a hole in the ozone layer, of coursehttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_redface.gif

    2. Yes – do ‘risk’ tomatoes. Just make sure that they get plenty of light this time and then they won’t become ten feet high triffids like last year. Good luck.

      1. Thanks Kath – lovely to be hearing from you & thanks to you I’ve definitely learned a lesson about tomatoes and light!! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_scratch.gif

  5. Very enjoyable themed crossword thank you Giovanni and DT

    Good Matt cartoon today too.

  6. Enjoyed this a lot. Thanks Don and DT.

    My favourites (oops) were 17, 6 and 23d and 28a.

    Still trying to work out all the WWII refs. According to my OH , one is a pipeline?

    I’m thinking of planting a 7.

    1. 7’s get absolutely enormous and have very big leaves so give dense shade – and not much else as far as I can remember. We cut ours down several years ago – never saw a mulberry.

      1. Good advice Kath.
        I have been seduced by the one in Shakespeare’s BP garden. But I can see they would take over.

    2. Bluebird – the pipeline codeword would have been PLUTO. From memory, OVERLORD was the Normandy campaign as a whole, NEPTUNE was the naval bit of it, MULBERRY was the floating harbour system, and UTAH and OMAHA were two of the beaches. As DT says, PEDESTAL was a much earlier Malta convoy.
      (Sorry – as a retired RN officer l have bit of a thing about this sort of stuff!)

  7. Struggled more than I usually do with a Dons puzzles.
    Don’t quite get ‘sealed’ in 3d, surely that implies that you don’t take anything away?
    And why ‘priority’ in 26a?
    Missed the inclusion in 23d but I knew the answer from waxy stuff and was annoyed that I couldn’t see the meaning of Job as in Jobs patience in 25a, spent ages trying to get post in there, DOH!
    Best clue for me was 5a, very clever I thought. Also clever theme refs.
    Thx to the a Don for a great workout and to DT for explaining some of my answers.

  8. Excellent. Thought the grid a poignant choice.. The Telegraph Centenary Crossword Collection chapter 1 confirms answers appeared in 1944 2nd May, Omaha 22 May, Overlord 27 May, Mulberry 30 May and finally Neptune on June 1st . If I seem to to have too much time on my hands i am particularly 1d due to being riddled with chicken pox. Many thanks to Giovanni and DT

    1. Oh Andy! How horrid for you… Do hope it clears quickly & your four-footed family is takin good care of you

    2. Oh poor you – getting a “childhood” ailment as an adult is no fun – I caught mumps from our Pet Lambs. I thought I was going to die.
      When our younger one had chicken pox (she was about three) she was meant to be going to a birthday party a few days later but we had to tell her that she couldn’t go if she still had any spots as she would still be able to give it to people. On the morning of the party she came in to wake us up and tell us that all her spots had gone – she’d scratched them all off and was absolutely covered in blood. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_rolleyes.gif
      I do hope you feel better soon.

      1. Joint response to Poppy and Kath yes it is horrid ,mind you at least that makes the infected wisdom tooth seem less of an issue.Pooches fine, lodger walking them then taking them to the pub (ggrrrr) . Kath with your medical background if I old you my temp was over 39.3 on diagnosis….Forwards and upwards

        1. Regular Paracetamol – ie two four times a day – you get up, you take a couple etc etc. Calamine lotion on the spots and DON’T scratch.
          Poor you, again.
          When our two were getting the beastly virus we went to stay with my sister (three sons – youngest probably about 18 months old so still in nappies) Chicken Pox when still in nappies is not good – assume you don’t have that to contend with!! Spare a thought for my youngest nephew.
          How on earth did you avoid it as a child? It really is one of the most “catching” things around.

          1. The last question is the hardest to answer, I just don’t know. I had every other childhood “thing” going and later more imms and vaccs against just about everything when I worked abroad. I’m doing the paracetemol thing but not calemine – GP said Lavender Oil – thoughts??

            1. No – at an absolute loss to know how to help. A tepid bath with a little bit of salt in it? That certainly wouldn’t do any harm and could provide a bit of relief, albeit probably fairly temporary.
              Yet again, poor you. Here’s a whole bouquet of flowers so just don’t tell me they’ve given you hay fever to add to your miseries. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_rose.gifhttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_rose.gifhttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_rose.gif

                1. I daren’t argue with a GP – I’m a mere nurse/mother and out of date on both counts!

    3. Olive oil on the spots is supposed to stop scarring. It worked for my two and stopped the itching too. Hope you’re better soonhttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_rose.gif

        1. I would leave the paracetamol alone. Google its effects. then google overdose effects. Never touch the stuff.

  9. My 5types of tomatoes have been outside for 2 weeks doing okay up till now ,flowering well .Last year 604 tomatoes from 8plants hoping for same this year bit concerned about weather forecast for tonight & tomorrow

    1. You counted your tomatoes? Do you think you should get out more?
      I’m a bit worried about forecast too – not that worrying is going to do my garden any good.

      1. I counted mine the year I managed to save a total of three from 6 plants! I doubt that the squirrels that stole the rest bothered to count their loot.

  10. Late – been busy. I thought this was fairly straightforward for a Friday. 2* difficulty and 3* or maybe 4* for enjoyment.
    Apart from 24a and 11d the D Day references passed me by – not sure that I knew any of the others anyway.
    I spent too long on 25 and 28a.
    I liked 16 and 28a and 17d. My favourite was 1d.
    With thanks to Giovanni and DeepThreat.
    Sunny and quite hot but the forecast for tomorrow is terrible. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif

  11. I spotted the theme early on and it definately enhanced the pleasure. My main problem arose from thinking that 1a had 2 p’s.
    I liked 5a, 10a, 29a and many others. Thanks to all involved.

    1. Don’t mention “spotting” anything today – just spare a thought for poor Andy!

  12. A very enjoyable and amusing puzzle made poignant by the date and the theme. Excellent fodder for the grey cells. I rate this 2.5/4.5 Thanks to DT for the review.

  13. This was a very enjoyable themed puzzle. **/**** for me. The clues I liked the most were 16a and 25a. Thank you very much, Giovanni.

    Thank you very much, too, Deep Threat, for the interesting and very informative hints which I didn’t need today. But I appreciate going through them now as I didn’t get the first part of the wordplay of 21a quite right. Nor did I know that 30a was the name of a convoy to Malta in 1944.

  14. Ref .tomatoes .Count every plant those not producing get kicked into touch. goodbye Shirley, Welcome Outdoor Girl.Be concerned worry never helped anything

  15. Thanks to Giovanni and to Deep Threat for the review and hints. A very enjoyable puzzle, was held up a bit in the SE Corner. All the codewords went completely over my head, didn’t notice the 26d. Favourite was 16a, was q2*/3* for me. Last in was was 14a. Completed by the duck pond in the blazing sunshine.

  16. Lovely puzzle today and I’m too ashamed to admit that the theme passed over my head although fully aware of what day it is and all the commemorations. Thanks to Giovanni and DT .

  17. Many thanks to the Don for a fine puzzle and to Deep Threat whose hints were invaluable for the explanation of some of the clues

  18. Thanks to the Don for a fine puzzle and the tribute inherent in it. Not too difficult, but rewarding, so 2*/4*. I liked 18d particularly. Thanks too to DT for the review.

  19. Well I have to say I couldn’t get to grips with this at all even though I presumed the theme so many thanks Deep Threat for saving the day. I do have to say my mind has perhaps not been entirely on the job as I have been somewhat preoccupied with all the commemorations from across the Channel. My scoring would be the reverse of DT i.e. ****/**. Thanks anyway Giovanni. Phew! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-phew.gif

  20. Very enjoyable 2*/3* though the D-day content completely passed me by even though I am of an age to know better.
    20d completely stumped me-never heard the expression before. Writing Sat 7am having already been out planting flowers around the town after heavy rain and thunder earlier on. Looks as if weather will improve from now

  21. Thank you DG. Managed to finish this before the flight home – probably would have struggled to finish it on the flight with all the surrounding irritations. Even though I had set our recorder to capture all the D Day stuff, I missed all the referenceds http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_wacko.gif Thanks DT for your review. You must be having fabulous weather – it was getting hotter by the day in Sorrento !

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