DT 27922

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27922

Hints and tips by Deep Threat

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

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

Good morning from South Staffs, where it’s rather foggy this morning.

I thought I’d made a slow start to today’s puzzle from the Don, but found when I’d completed it that I was right on the border between * and ** time. I think the long anagrams in the middle helped.

In the hints below, the definitions are underlined. The answers are hidden under the ‘Click here!’ buttons, so don’t click if you don’t want to see them.

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.


5a           Dignitary to ramble endlessly when installed in position (7)
PROVOST – Remove the final letter (endlessly) from a verb meaning to ramble or wander, and put the result inside a position or job.

7a           Regular journeys — according to report they go underground (5)
ROOTS – These sound like (according to report) the regular journeys taken by buses, for example.

9a           Haul ruler back, showing esteem (6)
REGARD – Another word for haul or pull, followed by the letters indicating our monarch, all reversed.

10a         Within list there’s commercial type of vehicle (8)
ROADSTER – A short word for a commercial placed inside a list of work allocations.

Image result for roadster

11a         Branch of medicine that could make one stay chirpy (10)
PSYCHIATRY – Anagram (could make) of STAY CHIRPY.

13a         Go downhill having imbibed a Japanese drink (4)
SAKI – The word for going down a snowy hill balanced on two planks, with A (from the clue) inserted.

14a         Finest lass — she unfortunately manifests disloyalty (13)
FAITHLESSNESS – Anagram (unfortunately) of FINEST LASS SHE.

16a         Black stuff on the front of old plant (4)
TARO – The black stuff used in road surfaces, followed by Old, giving a food plant which is a staple in African. Oceanic and South Indian cultures.

Image result for taro

17a         Prince Otto sacked personal bodyguard maybe (10)
PROTECTION – Anagram (sacked) of PRINCE OTTO.

19a         Party people present (8)
DONATION – The usual crossword party followed by a people or race.

20a         City hospital in district with church (6)
PARISH – A large city in France followed by Hospital.

22a         Stuck in car, a certain person in a hurry (5)
RACER – Hidden in the clue.

23a         Soldiers in French city by river (7)
RANGERS River, followed by a city in western France, the historic capital of Anjou, giving us some US special forces.


1d           That’s a bit I love — thanks! (4)
IOTA – Put together I (from the clue), the letter which looks like a love score at tennis, and an informal way of saying ‘thank you’.

2d           Game is hard, daughter admitted — swimmer with severe limitations? (8)
GOLDFISH – Put together a game which has been described as ‘a good walk spoiled’, IS (from the clue) and Hard, then insert Daughter, to get something which is often found swimming round and round a small bowl.

Image result for goldfish

3d           Dull and uninteresting? Listener needs to be engaged (6)
DREARY – The bodily organ used for listening placed inside a word for uninteresting.

4d           Harmonious and happy old Bob is kept inside (10)
CONSISTENT – A word for ‘happy’ wrapped around the abbreviation for the old coin known as a bob and IS (from the clue).

5d           Word sometimes worn by journalist in crowd (5)
PRESS – Double definition: cartoon journalists often have this word attached to their hat; and a crowd or mass of people.

Image result for journalist

6d           Go past critical point and mark page in book? (4,3,6)
TURN THE CORNER – Double definition, the first being a metaphorical way of saying that a crisis is past; the second being a way of marking one’s place that was strongly discouraged when I was at school.

8d           Religious types entertaining ambassador and rulers (7)
SHEIKHS – The honorific letters put before the name of an ambassador are placed inside the word describing the followers of Guru Nanak.

12d         Greek character and gypsy outside front of circus fortune-telling (10)
CHIROMANCY – The 22nd letter of the Greek alphabet, followed by a gypsy wrapped around the first letter (front) of Circus.

14d         Characteristic quality of learner in act of kindness (7)
FLAVOUR – The letter indicating a learner driver placed inside an act of kindness.

15d         Cleaning? Carol’s keen to get stuck in (8)
SWEEPING – Another way of expressing the verb ‘to carol’ wrapped around what someone keening does.

17d         Privilege of preferential treatment, the thing lacking in religious house (6)
PRIORY – Remove the pronoun for ‘the thing’ from the sort of preferential treatment that gets you to the front of the queue, and you get a community of monks.

18d         Forces out in old-fashioned combats without leader (5)
OUSTS – Remove the initial J from old-fashioned mounted combats.

21d         Nonconformist losing heart in dance (4)
REEL – Remove the middle letter from someone who resists the status quo.

The Quick Crossword pun RESTER + SHORED = REST ASSURED


  1. Angel
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 11:33 am | Permalink

    I found this tougher than did DT but nevertheless it was satisfying to complete and very enjoyable at the same time. Thank you Mr. Ron and DT. NW corner last to go in. 12d now added to my vocabulary and indeed meaning of keen in 15d. ***/****. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif

  2. Michael
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 11:39 am | Permalink

    Very enjoyable – good fun!

    Power-washing the paths calls – big sigh!


  3. Paso Doble
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 11:39 am | Permalink

    We also thought it was harder – maybe 2.5 – but very enjoyable. Thanks to Mr Don and Deep Threat.

  4. Wayne
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    New meaning of ‘keen’ or ‘keening’ for me in 15d. All pretty straightforward but enjoyable, **/*** for me.
    Thanx to Compiler and Deep Threat for the review.

  5. Jane
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 11:48 am | Permalink

    A couple of hesitations put me into 2* time on this one.
    16a was a new word and although I’d heard of 12d before it took a while to get beyond the fact that clairvoyance wouldn’t fit!
    Dithered a little over which bit of 23a was the definition.
    Liked 2d – recall that we had this one not so long ago.

    Thanks to DG and also to DT – one of my neighbours has a 10a and I suspect that his wife comes a very poor second in his life!

  6. Miffypops
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    This took longer than usual because all of my answers disappeared about four fifths of the way through so I had to put them all in again. So having solved 2d the first time around, why did I struggle so much with it only ten minutes later? A lovely puzzle. Thanks to Jay and Deep Threat. The Importance Of Being Earnest was a very good entertainment last night with a different start that allowed “A Handbag” to be said several time over at the beginning. Nigel Havers and Martin Jarvis hammed it up and overacted all the way through.

    • neveracrossword
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

      I’m slightly confused. Is Jay the alter ego of the Don?

      • Kath
        Posted October 2, 2015 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

        No – the Don is someone called Don Manley. I think that Jay is called Jeremy but could very easily be wrong and I can’t remember his surname.

        • pommers
          Posted October 2, 2015 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

          Jay is Jeremy Mutch and he’s also ORENSE in the FT.

          • Miffypops
            Posted October 2, 2015 at 3:51 pm | Permalink

            I was thanking Jay for Wednesday’s puzzle. Thank you Don for today’s puzzle

  7. Jaycat
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    Found this fairly hard with hestitations on 12d,15d and 16a. Hints required. Enjoyed 13a, 10a and 6d.

    Thanks to setter and DT

  8. Rabbit Dave
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

    2*/2*. I found this formulaic and rather 5d. 16a & 12d were the only two obscure words today, but these were easily derived from the clues. 6d was my favourite.

    Thanks to the setter and to DT.

  9. Avril
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 12:12 pm | Permalink

    I liked 2d. I also love reading what Miffypops says, hilarious!

    • crypticsue
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

      Welcome Avril – please don’t encourage him.

      • Kitty
        Posted October 2, 2015 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

        You took the words right out of my mouth, CS! ;)

        Welcome from me too, Avril.

    • Hanni
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

      Welcome Avril.

      Encourage away, he’s quite shy and retiring. He needs bringing out of his shell more.

      • Shropshirelad
        Posted October 2, 2015 at 4:30 pm | Permalink


        • Hanni
          Posted October 2, 2015 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

          It’s quite simple. He’s a shy batter eating, lager drinking publican in a pink suit. Has a thing about socks.

          Rumoured to like Bob Dylan but that’s an urban myth.

          • Shropshirelad
            Posted October 2, 2015 at 5:08 pm | Permalink

            Surely not lager http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_eek.gif

            • Hanni
              Posted October 2, 2015 at 5:18 pm | Permalink


              Speaking of such things, are there any vintages I should be sampling this weekend?

              • Shropshirelad
                Posted October 2, 2015 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

                Villa Maria Private Bin Sauvignon Blanc @ £6.99 in Morrison’s (if there’s any left) or £8.39 in Waitrose. I’ve bought 2 cases from Morrison’s – lovely stuff. Normally sound £10 a bottle – enjoy.

                • Kitty
                  Posted October 2, 2015 at 9:24 pm | Permalink

                  Poor Dutch!

  10. pete
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

    Hardest of the week by far for me. Managed about two thirds of it, I don’t understand 8d and15d? just filled in the missing letters.

    • Paso Doble
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

      Pete, HE means ‘His Eminence’ and then you insert that in Sikhs.

      • Angel
        Posted October 2, 2015 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

        His Excellency even!

  11. Beaver
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

    Like DT made a slow start at the top but speeded up as I tuned into the setter on my meanderings southward , some clues took a bit of hard work, but like Angel found it ‘satisfying ‘ so going for a 2.5*/ 4****.Failed to get on yesterday’s blog as I kept getting ‘timed out’ whatever that means-made the point yesterday that there were two clues where a single letter was used as an abbreviation for a whole word and this was on the increase-always thought that this type of cluing smacks of desperation on the part of the setter.

  12. Hanni
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 12:32 pm | Permalink


    13 and 16a held me up. The former as I was unfamiliar with that particular spelling even though the clue was clear. The latter as I had to check the definition. Everything else was straightforward and very pleasant.

    Many thanks to Giovanni and to DT for blogging.

    Elgar has me on the run.

    Hope everyone has a good weekend. It’s glorious here and due to freeze tomorrow.

    • Jane
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

      So glad that you did a Giovanni puzzle as well. MP thinks it’s one of Jay’s, several others have gone for Mr. Ron and RD found the whole thing to be rather 5d!

      As for the Elgar – I’ve got four and a half answers in, learnt more than I ever wanted to know about Frimley Green and think I might go out for the afternoon. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

      • Hanni
        Posted October 2, 2015 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

        Ha!!! We’ll talk in the other side about ‘that’ clue. Keep at it. 8 to go.

        It is a lovely afternoon though.

      • Miffypops
        Posted October 2, 2015 at 4:32 pm | Permalink

        MP just got mixed up. A rare occasion, but it happened

  13. JonP
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 12:36 pm | Permalink

    As per DT I made a slowish start and finished on the border of 1 and 2 star time. Enjoyable solve, with thanks to DT and Giovanni 1.5*/3.5*

  14. Heinz
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

    A puzzle of two halves, difficult and easier. I agree with earlier verdict ***/***
    Some good, clever clueing and some obscure, but still enjoyable.

  15. Brian
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

    Back to the Dons high standard, superb. Such a relief after yesterday stinker which I totally failed to even start!

  16. mre
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

    Good afternoon everybody.

    Too hard for me and I raised the white flag with 15d, 20a, 21d and 23a unsolved. 15d was my downfall – even though the solution was the only word I could see I just couldn’t rationalise it – though I’m not convinced I’d have got 20 or 23a in any case.

    I thought the puzzle was very enjoyable with some very good clues and a couple of new (to me) words at 12d and 16a. Favourites were 9,10,11a and 4d. Inevitably I spent far too much time on this puzzle so four/four for me.

    Next up Genevieve on Film 4. It’s a hard life….

  17. pete
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

    Cheers Paso Doble

  18. Kitty
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

    This didn’t cause Team Kitty any problems – at least not once the coffee was made.

    Thanks to Don and DT.

    Gorgeous day in London. I took a lap of the Serpentine (no, I don’t mean I tasted the water! – yeuk!) to check on my birdies. Beautiful. Have a lovely weekend all.

    • Merusa
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

      Love your new kitty gravatar! That is some gyration!

      • Kitty
        Posted October 2, 2015 at 9:22 pm | Permalink

        Thanks Merusa! That cat is rather more flexible and athletic than I am though :) .

  19. Patski
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

    Slow start for me too and two new words as well. Nonetheless finished it with a bit of guesswork. At least the new app tells you when you have them all correct..bit of a panic near the end when a full page ad appeared and feared I’d lost everything but for once not!

    Missed yesterday’s so going to give it a go now. Another lovely day here by the seaside too.

  20. dutch
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

    Great new word at 12d! Day 2 of sober october and I can see a sunny beer garden beginning to fill up.

    • Hanni
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

      Good grief Dutch. I don’t envy you. Best of luck.

    • andy
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

      I did a dry evening once, never again ;)

    • Patski
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

      Yes I’m trying not to laugh too! ;-)

    • Beaver
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

      >Think I missed a day in 2010 or was ithttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cry.gif 2011

    • Hanni
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

      We’re a supportive bunch aren’t we? http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_biggrin.gif

    • dutch
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

      thanks guys.

      • crypticsue
        Posted October 2, 2015 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

        I am antibiotics for a week so I’ll keep you company

        • Merusa
          Posted October 2, 2015 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

          Antibiotics never stopped me.

          • Ginny
            Posted October 2, 2015 at 8:26 pm | Permalink

            Never stopped me either. I love your marmalade cat.

  21. jean-luc cheval
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 3:04 pm | Permalink

    Agree with DT.
    Didn’t spend a long time on this one but enjoyed the cleverness of the clues.
    9a stood out for me.
    Thanks to the Don and to DT for the blog.

  22. Kath
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 3:25 pm | Permalink

    I’m always slow with Fridays – 3* for both difficulty and enjoyment.
    ‘Invented’ 16a from the clue and looked it up not really expecting it to be there – also called eddo apparently and I have heard of that although no idea what to do with it.
    Like others I didn’t know 12d and like Jane couldn’t quite squeeze clairvoyancy into the space.
    Missed the anagram indicator in 17a.
    Liked 14d and 1d. My favourite was 6d.
    With thanks to Giovanni and to Deep Threat.
    Now to see if I’m going to be allowed to post this then off to the garden.

    • Kath
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

      It worked that time!http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

  23. Vancouverbc
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 3:45 pm | Permalink

    ***/***. More difficult than I expected and for the first time in ages needed hints from DT for which much thanks. Thanks also to the setter for the workout.

  24. Graham Wall
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

    Quite enjoyed this one but did not find it easy. Would rate ***/*** Completed this on the new Telegraph app which I would highly recommend. Thanks to DT for the review.

  25. Shropshirelad
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

    Enjoyable way to complete the week on a beautiful Shropshire sunny afternoon. First read through gave me 13a and nothing else – went to the fridge and poured myself a nice chilled glass of Pinot Grigio and all went swimmingly after that. My glass is uncannily like the Matt cartoon a time ago


    The only clue / answer I wasn’t keen on was 23a as I have many friends that used to be in the Armed Forces and the term doesn’t sit well. The rest fell into place reasonably quickly.

    Thanks to the Don for the puzzle and my close neighbour DT for his review.

    Have a good weekend all http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

    • Shropshirelad
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

      Ignore my comment on 23a – I can’t read my own writing http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_scratch.gif

  26. Merusa
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

    The new word for me was 12d, and I also wanted clairvoyance. I even looked it up to see if there were alternate spellings. I really had no other problems.
    I knew 16a, used a lot in Hawaii. In Jamaica we have a root veg called coco and it looks exactly like that. I didn’t know they were the same.
    Fave was 6d, though there were other interesting clues.
    Thanks to Giovanni and to DT.

  27. Young Salopian
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

    I made heavy weather of this very good puzzle, largely because my new I-Pad app keeps playing up, continuously asking me for a password, plus Mrs YS and I had a poor journey home from Cyprus, not arriving back at the ranch until 5.15 this morning. Two morons got themselves thrown off the outward bound flight from Manchester, so the authorities had to remove all the baggage from the hold to find their luggage. The result being the plane was over two hours late all round. Then the A5 was closed outside Wrexham meaning an early morning detour. Brain completely addled (my first attempt at this sentence came out as Brian completely addled). Anyway, I finished it and it finished me. 3/3 with thanks all round.


  28. Una
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 5:21 pm | Permalink

    My second go, I really enjoyed this puzzle , especially 11a, 7a, 13a, 20a, 12d.
    thanks to the Don and DT.

  29. Salty Dog
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

    My completion came right on the 1*/2* boundary too, so perhaps l have the same notional cut-off points as DT. On the other hand, he may work in minutes rather than hours! Whichever, this one didn’t take too long. 2d was my favourite clue. Thanks to the Don ( if indeed it was himself who set this one) and to DT for the review.

  30. silvanus
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 5:39 pm | Permalink

    Three quarters of the puzzle went in quite easily, but I then ground to halt with the SE corner, and those last four or five clues took longer than the rest combined.

    No biblical references today, but a couple of religious/ecclesiastical ones as is the Don’s custom.

    Favourite was 2d, nicely clued.

    Many thanks to Mr. Manley and to Deep Threat.

  31. 2Kiwis
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

    Our geography knowledge let us down on 23a and this was our last answer in by quite a long way. The rest all went together smoothly in about the usual time for a Friday puzzle. We enjoyed it.
    Thanks Giovanni and DT.

  32. Gwizz
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

    BD – please why is there now a Time out on your website? Most frustrating!
    So for the second time….
    A great Friday challenge from the Don. Damn, I’ve forgotten what I wrote the first time!
    My favourite was 2d, and when I read Jane’s comment (5) I initially thought this was what she was referring to re: the husband.
    Oops! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/smiley-phew.gif
    Thanks to the Don and to DT for his review.
    Oh, and 3/3* overall

    • Posted October 2, 2015 at 7:26 pm | Permalink

      The hosting company decided to “upgrade” the server – see my note at the bottom of yesterday’s Toughie post.

      • Angel
        Posted October 2, 2015 at 9:46 pm | Permalink

        Their explanation is clear as mud to me!

      • Tstrummer
        Posted October 3, 2015 at 12:26 am | Permalink

        BD: : I’ve now read your appended note on yesterday’s Toughie. No idea what he’s talking about. It sounds like those recorded messages saying “your call is important to us” while endlessly playing Vivaldi down the line as one’s phone bill mounts and one’s patience runs out

    • Angel
      Posted October 2, 2015 at 9:01 pm | Permalink

      Good to know I’m not the only one hassled by timing out – wondered what was going on!

  33. Hrothgar
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

    I found this fairly taxing.
    So, a *** for difficulty for me.
    And, blow me down with a feather, 15d, I never knew that ‘keen’ meant a ****
    Many thanks to Giovanni, and to DT for the nicely illustrated review.

  34. ezfer
    Posted October 2, 2015 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

    I’m in the ‘quick completion’ camp – haven’t been doing this long enough to work out any sort of average solving times to give it a star rating but I guess I would concur with 1*/2* (though that doesn’t mean it was quick by the clock!). Even better, I had the parsing correct, even with the troublesome 15d – had the answer for a while before I could see the word play breakdown. 16a and 12d and place in 23a were ‘new’ to me – though must be at back of mind somewhere as I was able to work out then just check in dictionary/atlas. Many thanks to setter (lovely to have a challenge I can complete!) and DT for confirmation of my solutions.

  35. Tstrummer
    Posted October 3, 2015 at 12:10 am | Permalink

    Good stuff from the Don as usual. First pass yielded only a handful, but gradually the trickier ones fell once I had a few checkers in place. Missed the anagram indicator in 11a, but got it from the surface reading, so that’s got to be the clue in the pit lane spraying Moët over scantily clad girls called Camilla and Jemima. Many thanks to the Don and to DT for taking the trouble, although not needed tonight. 2*/3*

  36. Tstrummer
    Posted October 3, 2015 at 12:19 am | Permalink

    WHAT IS GOING ON WITH THIS SITE? It’s taken me longer to post my comment than it took to finish the sodding crossword – and I’ve had to jump through unfamiliar hoops just to get in

    • Franco
      Posted October 3, 2015 at 12:44 am | Permalink


      I’m sure that normal service will be resumed as soon as possible.

      • Tstrummer
        Posted October 3, 2015 at 12:54 am | Permalink

        Sorry Franco (and BD). I’ve had a hard day, but there was no need to shout.

        • Miffypops
          Posted October 3, 2015 at 1:14 am | Permalink

          You can shout a London pride next time you are up my way Ts. You can shout me one too.