DT 27834 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27834

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27834

Hints and tips by Miffypops

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Good day to you all. Welcome to the wonderful world of crypticity where all is not what it seems. Today is my daughter Joni’s birthday. I am 59 today. Remember you have entered the world of The Cryptic Crossword Puzzle where all is not as it seems. Who will be first to take the bait? Nice puzzle today from Rufus. Sorry the blog is late.

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    Loathed new fashions, as slovenly (4,2,4)
DOWN AT HEEL: We love anagrams to begin with. Rearrange LOATHED NEW as indicated by the word fashions. No writing implements are necessary to solve this. Just keep looking at it playing with the letters in your mind. The solution will come.

6a    Married expert joined staff (4)
MACE: M(arried) followed by a person who excels at a particular sport or other activity.

Do I smell chestnuts roasting?

10a    Post back with little hesitation (5)
AFTER: This post means what comes later. Take a three letter word for the rear end of a ship and add our usual suspect for hesitation. Either um or er. You choose.

11a    Blanket coverage (9)
BEDSPREAD: A cover for a bed. I have only ever see these in hotels nowadays. Harrison did not need one last Thursday.

12a    Inferior article press chief turned down (8)
REJECTED: Take an item that might be sold cheaply because of minor flaws and add our usual shortened form for the head of a newspaper.

13a    It locates aircraft coming or going (5)
RADAR: A palindrome indicated by the words coming or going. A system for detecting the presence, direction, distance, and speed of aircraft, ships, and other objects, by sending out pulses of radio waves which are reflected off the object back to the source. Pommers has an app which can do much the same.

15a    Visible  discernment? (7)
INSIGHT:  You need to split the answer (2,5) to understand the first word.

17a    He’s patronised by another (7)
PROTÉGÉ: a person who is guided and supported by an older and more experienced or influential person. Not a mentor. That only has six letters

19a    Cook sausage to satisfy hunger? (7)
ASSUAGE: Anagram (cook) of sausage. I like a bit of food in a puzzle. We can have these in a sandwich and wash them down with a glass of 8d

21a    There’ll be friction as long as he’s at work (7)
MASSEUR: One who might give a rub down in a Turkish bath

22a    Field the Royal Navy become proficient in (5)
LEARN: This field is a meadow with three letters. Place the initial letters of R(oyal) N(avy) after it

24a    It may be parental — or not (8)
PATERNAL: Anagram of PARENTAL. Is the indicator (may be) or is it (or not). Either way this is a delicious all in one.

27a    Show fight having provision for spectators (9)
WITHSTAND: Another double definition. The provision for supporters will need to be split (4,5)

28a    I will gain knowledge about French river (5)
LOIRE: Place a noun meaning a body of traditions and knowledge on a subject or held by a particular group around I from the clue

29a    Patch up agreement for Russian resistance to meet knight (4)
DARN: What my dear mother used to do to repair holes in my socks. The final letter is the letter used in chess notation to indicate the man on a horse. The first three letters elude me. Over to you lot

30a    Exhibits salesman takes exception to (10)
REPRESENTS: Take our three letter usual suspect for a travelling salesman and add the plural noun meaning to feel bitterness or resentment towards


1d    Timber  transaction (4)
DEAL: A double definition. The first being Fir or Pine wood. Not Chestnut wood although the fruits of The sweet Chestnut tree are roasting away merrily.

2d    Sees sense, possibly, within reason (9)
WITNESSES: Place an anagram (possibly) of SENSE inside (within) a word meaning ones capacity for inventive thought and quick understanding; keen intelligence.

3d    About time to go round — OK? (5)
AGREE: Two usual suspects for the price of one. A three letter word meaning a long time is placed around our usual word implied by about. This clue should have been obvious but shied away from revealing itself until quite late.

4d    Tabitha abandoned natural home (7)
HABITAT: Anagram (abandoned) of TABITHA

5d    Arrived with tails in the air? (5,2)
ENDED UP: Not where we started from but where we (5,2)

7d    Winning article on school principal (5)
AHEAD: The shortest article there is (a determiner) followed by the main teacher in a school.

8d    More mature rock’n’roll singer that gets into wine (10)
ELDERBERRY: More mature means greater in age. This Rock n Roll singer and guitarist is possibly older than anyone else on planet earth. He wrote Johnny B Goode, Maybelline, Roll over Beethoven and many more great songs. Here is Ronnie Lane singing “You Never Can Tell”

ARVE Error: need id and provider

9d    False credit note accepted by football team (8)
SPURIOUS: Take the nickname for Tottenham Hotspur and insert the initials of a signed document acknowledging a debt.

14d    Did so well, a resitting is not permitted (10)
DISALLOWED: OOH an anagram (resitting) of DID SO WELL A. The word Anagram must be the most used word on Big Dave’s site. Who gets to use it the most. Miffypops. That is who. Now put those pencils down!!!

ARVE Error: need id and provider

16d    Finish up having a drink outside for pleasure (8)
GLADNESS: Reverse (up in a down clue) a three lettered word meaning the finish. Now surround this (outside) with a word that can mean both a drink (of ale) or the receptacle it comes in. here is a song with this word in it.

ARVE Error: need id and provider

18d    Architect’s plan for advancement (9)
ELEVATION: A double definition. The first being a scale drawing showing the vertical projection of one side of a building.

20d    Former buccaneer loses right to do penance (7)
EXPIATE: One former husband, wife, boyfriend or girlfriend followed by a seafaring criminal minus (loses) his or her letter (R)ight

21d    Ring fighter likely to produce a pass when charged (7)
MATADOR: This ring is a Bullring. This fighter wears a suit of lights. The fight is unfair and always results in the death of the bull. Entertainment. Not in Miffypops’ book.

23d    Change later, or change now (5)
ALTER: Now here is a delightfully clued anagram. A perfect all in one clue. The answer contains five letters. There is only one five lettered word in the clue. You find it. You work it out. In your mind.

25d    Draws the line at  regulations (5)
RULES: A double definition the second being made to be broken.

26d    Canteen litter (4)
MESS: And we end up with a double definition the second being a building or room providing meals and recreational facilities for members of the armed forces. The chestnuts are perfectly roasted and ready to eat.

Blogged to some early Bob Dylan and then some divine Amy Winehouse.

The Quick Crossword pun: plait+études=platitudes

98 comments on “DT 27834

  1. 1*/3*. Lots more Monday smiles again today for another lovely puzzle from Rufus. The only clues which took a bit of cogitation were my last two in 27a & 18d. My favourite was 23d.

    Many thanks to Rufus and to MP.

  2. No pain today so not bothered by your slightly delayed appearance MP. Thanks anyway for ‘being there’. Liked 29a and 9d. Thanks Rufus for the easy ride. **/***.

  3. Another lovely Rufus today. We took far more time than necessary for some unknown reason. **/***

  4. Wow just listened to you never can tell Brilliant my sort of music.back to the puzzle only needed the hints for 17A but can’t see why I didn’t get it. Many thanks to the setter & Miffypops for his normal excellent review & many happy returns to the MP household.

  5. */***

    Lovely way to start the week. Anagrams aplenty and a lovely all in one, 24a.

    I used a pencil to solve all but one of the anagrams. A red pencil but the rubber has now gone.

    The abovementioned clue gets the favourite award and 13a gets a mention as it’s a palindrome. I like palindromes.

    Many thanks to the setter and to Miffypops for your usual excellent blog. I hope youe daughter has a fantastic day. When’s your birthday?

          1. The pink one. And the pink shirt…and tie…and number plate. They are a triumph.

            I’m unfamiliar with the law one.

  6. 29 across the first three letters are Russian for yes followed by the abbreviation for resistance.

      1. dutch, Franco and spindrift – I think you’re misinterpreting what Mike said. He is explaining the first three letters – he is saying that it is the Russian for yes (two letters) followed by R for resistance.

    1. 29a – Nyet! Nyet!

      The first two letters are the Russian for yes – then (R)esistance then the chess notation for Knight.

      Боже мой!

  7. 2*/3* for me today – the 2* for difficulty is because 17a took ages to see, otherwise it would have been 1*.
    I was a bit slow with 2d – don’t know why – and finding the drink in16d also took a while.
    Started off with ‘eiderdown’ for 11a – that didn’t last long but didn’t half screw things up while it was there.
    I liked 27a and 8d.
    With thanks to Rufus and thanks and Happy Birthday to Miffypops.
    29a – The Russian word for ‘yes’ (agreement) followed by R(esistance) and one of the usual one letter abbreviations for Knight – not K – the other one.

  8. 18d last one in ? , 17a took some getting but liked the resultant answer , otherwise a very enjoyable offering from Rufus . Thanks to Miffypops enjoy both birthdays **/***

  9. Thank you Rufus for an enjoyable start to the week – a good deal easier than last Monday. Although the answer to 18d was obvious I wonder if the clue might be improved by substituting the word “drawing” for “plan” – Having spent many years working with architects, I had always assumed that a plan was a drawing of a horizontal surface – ground floor plan etc – and an elevation was a drawing of a vertical surface. Perhaps plan was used as a deception anyway ! Thanks MP for your review and hints. Happy Birthday and have a great day.

  10. Yes, a lovely puzzle from the maestro. To begin with this was very much read-and-write and for a second I thought that it would be over too soon. I needn’t have worried as I immediately got bogged down and took a embarrassingly length of time to complete. The slight delay in the appearance of your review was really helpful because I might otherwise have sneaked a peep at the hints when I felt it was taking too long. As it was I had to just get on and finish it under my own steam. I sure others will disagree but I’d almost like it if the review didn’t appear before, say, 2pm.

    Loved this! **/**** Many thanks to Miffypops and Mr Squires

  11. Many thanks Miffypops for a delightful review – worth waiting for.

    And another great monday morning puzzle – typical Rufus e.g. 6a, 10a, 22a.

    My favourites are the 14a anagram (did so well, a resitting..) which has great surface and just because “did so well a” sounds funky, should be part of a refrain in an old rock & roll song. Oh, and 16d (finish up having a drink).

    Many thanks Rufus

  12. Happy birthday old boy, I was wondering why you were late on parade..you were probably celebrating last night with a libation or 10.

    I’m 59 at the end of the year & then it’s the big one after that. My family want to take me abroad (I mean for me to pay to take them abroad) but I’m having none of it.

    Good puzzle & good review.

  13. Happy Birthday to Joni and Miffypops. Welcome to the 59 Club. Just a little musical interlude for 21d ….. Jean-Luc may know this one.

    1. Good one Paso.
      There’s more and more talks to stop that kind of so called sport. Even from such South Westerners as Mr Cabrel.

    2. That was an incredibly moving song which had me in tears. I would rather live on a desert island and live on peanuts. In my world, that wouldn’t happen.

      Thank you Rufus. I had no difficulty with most of it but came to a temporary halt with 3 and 16d and 10 and 17a.

      Thank you MP for the blog and happy birthday to Joni. Fess up, you were also 59 yesterday. :)

      1. You are both right, Jean- Luc and Ginny…..it shouldn’t happen!
        And yes, well done Mr Cabrel with the help of a Gypsy King.

            1. Don’t worry, I don’t know how to put accents on my computer.
              To be is to do: Jean Paul Sartres.
              To do is to be: Rene Descartes.
              To be do be do be do bed doooh: Frank Sinatra.

              1. Love your combined quotes! Accents simple even for a Luddite like me – as you type hold down the letter and then slide up to the required accent. Do I make myself clear? Bonne chance!

                  1. Probably the easiest way is to write in CAPITALS where the accent is not needed.

                    1. Kitty you have therefore obviously cracked it using Alt + appropriate 3 or 4 digit code?

                    2. Yes, but I’m lazy efficient, so usually just google the word I want and copy and paste a version complete with accents from the search results. I don’t use é enough to remember that it’s ALT+0233!

  14. I had prenatal for 24a for a long time and it held me up quite a bit.
    3d was my favourite.
    Congratulations on your daughters birthday .Is it also your birthday (if so , HB), or have you been 59 for a while ?

    1. I also pencilled in “prenatal”…. but the bullfighter (21d) came to my rescue.

  15. Easier than last week and very enjoyable.
    The only one that stands out for me is 8d.
    Thanks to Rufus and Happy Birthday to the MP household.

    1. We are both in the 59 club, but Paso, rather than Doble will be hitting the unmentioned in August….Grrrrr to quote Kitty. Will I get a free bus pass?

    2. Yes – I remember your saying that it was the (can’t remember quite how many) anniversary of your twenty-first birthday a while ago! I think you’re four years younger than I am – I was sixty-six three weeks ago – how the hell did that happen when I wasn’t looking! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif

    3. I won’t mention my age, but I will say that it was 52 weeks ago exactly that I plucked up the courage to say hello. On balance I am pleased I did :).

  16. Lovely day here in Shropshire albeit a bit chilly when the sun clouds over. Rufus is in a benign mood with plenty of anagrams to get everyone going and a few sublime cryptics to finish off. I’ll plump for 20d as my favourite as Rufus was a pilot in the RN Fleet Air Arm until 1963 – a year after the Buccaneer was brought into service, but I don’t think he ever flew one.

    Thanks to Rufus and MP for today’s efforts. Love your suit MP (said in my best Hannibal Lecter voice) and many happy returns of the day to your daughter.

          1. I do hope you’re not offended Kath – but for those of a similar disposition, skip to the last 30 seconds of the clip.

            1. Anthony Hopkins used to go to the cinema when The Silence of the Lambs was screened and tapped people on the shoulder during the scary parts.

            2. No – of course I’m not offended. It takes an awful lot to offend me – I’ve never been offended on BD’s crossword blog (just don’t ask!) I do find Anthony Hopkins, in this role, really freaky and scary.

      1. Fair enough MP, that’s your prerogative – but if you don’t mind me saying, you do seem to be a bit hostile in your comments / replies these days. Not a criticism, just an observation. Maybe I’m wrong and if I am I do apologise.

        1. Gosh. Hostile. I don’t mean to come across that way so I will apologise also. I will try harder to play nice. Sorry.

          1. Sorry, hostile was the wrong word (and I don’t know where it came from) I actually meant something else, but the word won’t come to me. So I’ll have to leave it there I’m afraid http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

            1. Tastes (music, film, art – and even food) can unite people with similar preferences but can also be very divisive because people outside these groups are – well – outside. These differences can feel very personal because we feel that our preferences are an integral part of us. We should be free to say if we think something is tripe, but is worth bearing this in mind. Sometimes being critical of a thing feels like being critical of people.

                1. Put you in your place? Nobody needs to be put in their place – I was just trying to describe what I think was happening. I think MP’s comment sounded dismissive, but that you have more than enough brain to recognise that if it felt a bit hostile, it wasn’t intended in that way. Hence apologies all round – because we are all friends, just ones with some differing opinions. Which is what makes this place so great.

                  1. Sorry for coming across a tad stroppy – it was not my intention. I really should be in bed by now but I am putting together a eulogy for the funeral of one of my best friends tomorrow (today). So I shall not be about for the next few days. Best wishes to all.

                    1. Good luck with the eulogy. The first I ever delivered was the hardest job I have ever done.

            2. And here in a nutshell is a fine example of how social media can go wrong. Face to face comments can be made just as on a blog. Face to face they come with inflection smiles and twinkles of eyes. Or they come with menace that is obvious. On line or on paper only the very best of writers can carry that off. So a line delivered with a smile can be translated as a line delivered with menace and so it all goes wrong. We all need a chill pill sometimes. I am still not going to view the lip though. Which is where we started I have a smile as I type.

              1. Yep. Which is why I like emoticons :). They’re far from perfect but they do aid communication greatly when used well.

                1. Not by me it wasn’t. Provocative can describe me to a T but not in this case The Silence Of The Lambs is not a film I would watch. I would never use that illustration in my blog and don’t like it being here. I watch nothing overly violent. Not much with guns and shoot outs. The opening minute with the F word repeated endlessly almost caused me to miss Four weddings And A Funeral. Nice family viewing every time for me.

  17. Miffypops,
    Many people have mentioned your assistance with 17a, but not the fact that you confuse the master with the student,
    Regards oddjob.

  18. The SE corner put me (just) into 2* time. A solid 3* for satisfaction/enjoyment. I think the best clue is 29a. As for rock ‘n roll, l love Chuck Berry’s songs but often prefer them performed by someone else. A special mention to Johnnie Allan’s version of “Promised Land”. Everyone – give your ears a treat. Thanks to Rufus and MP, and happy birthday to Joni.

  19. A bit of a slow process today, with the trouble being the short words….don’t know why they give problems. Spent ages trying to get an anagram out of ‘more mature’ for 8d…thinking that Rock & Roll was the indicator!! Silly woman! The answer made me smile. I liked 20a..nice clue, but had to use the hints to explain 29a and 28a others fairly straightforward. Thanks to setter and to MP. 2*/3*

  20. Slightly trickier than a normal Monday offering I thought, but superbly entertaining as ever.

    Favourite was 16d, and I might well take up the suggestion given by the clue!

    Many thanks to Rufus and Miffypops (Happy Birthday!)

  21. Maybe it’s the training doing Monday crosswords under pressure, but I flew through this one – and very much enjoyed the flight too. It’s nice to see a little Russian. I also liked 19a and 16d: perfect clues for barbecue season.

    Thanks to Rufus for the fun. Thanks to Miffy for the very entertaining review. A very happy birthday to Joni.

  22. It all slotted smoothly together with lots of smiles along the way.
    Thanks Rufus and Miffypops.

  23. Thank you all for your kind compliments about my new suit. Thanks for Joni’s birthday wishes. Well done to those who realised today was not my birthday. For the rest of you, well, you were warned. Take care, have fun. It is Beer o clock here in Downtown L I.

  24. I was 59 once. It didn’t seem to last long.
    Another good effort from Rufus today, which I enjoyed, particularly 27 and 29a, which I only understood once I’d written it in. Always good to see the Lilywhites in a puzzle, so as a White Hart Lane season ticket holder, I’ll have to go for 9d as my favourite.
    Chuck Berry songs are best by Chuck Berry, who, along with Bo Diddly and Link Wray, invented rock’n’roll guitar. Three of my greatest heroes.
    Ta to MP, and congrats to Joni (no regrets, Coyote) on her birthday. My elder granddaughter is 12 today. 2*/3*

  25. Nice and straightforward start to the week. **/*** Thanks to MP and Rufus ;) Have you noticed how the nights are drawing in! :(

    1. The last bit is what my grandmother always said on June 22nd. She also always wanted to know the first time that any of us heard a cuckoo – nothing to do with each other, of course, but the two things are forever connected to her in my head.

  26. Thanks to Rufus and to Miffypops for the review and hints. A nice start to the week, I was completely beaten by 3d. Favourite was 29a. Was 2*/3* for me. Back home now, in the smoke. Made good use of the longest day, by walking from Seathwaite to Scaffel Pike via the Corridor Route and back, only took 11hours :-)

      1. Great walk, the top covered in cloud all day. I felt sorry for the Triathletes, that had part of the last leg as Wasdale to Scaffel Pike return, after having done the rest of the run, 180Km bike ride and a one and half mile swim in Wastwater starting at 4:30 am. Most of them were quite cheerful.

  27. A day late doing this excellent puzzle but still enjoyable. **\**** for me. A really good review and some fun comments from the regulars. Thanks to all.

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