DT 28087 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28087

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28087

Hints and tips by 2Kiwis

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty * – Enjoyment ***

One of us has just returned from a routine visit to the dentist. We are sure that this is not the sort of topic that people would enjoy as an introduction to the blog so we’ll just put that behind us and get on with solving and enjoying this puzzle. Sometimes Jay gives us a gentle puzzle and occasionally he gives us a very gentle puzzle. We found this to be one of the latter.

Please leave a comment telling us how you found it.


1a     Charles and his mother must supply drink after drink (6)
CHASER : The shortened form of our Crown Prince’s name and his mother’s title.

5a     Working on the sly? Really! (8)
HONESTLY : An anagram (working) of ON THE SLY.

9a     Dismay — poor Tories cannot win without Women’s Institute (13)
CONSTERNATION : An anagram (poor) of TORIES CANNOT wiN after the abbreviation for Women’s Institute has been removed.

10a     Play one’s part quietly, subject to law (8)
UNDERACT : Split the answer 5,3 to get a word meaning ‘subject to’ and a law in the process of being formulated.

11a     Two females beam after a disturbance of the peace (6)
AFFRAY : A from the clue, then the repeated abbreviation for female and a word meaning a beam of light.

12a     Hard taskmaster thereby disheartened with harangue (6)
TYRANT : The first and last letters of ‘thereby’ and a word for harangue.

14a     Puts together company, before making simple change (8)
COMPILES : The abbreviation for company and then an anagram (change) of SIMPLE.

16a     Arrange special cover for the present (4-4)
GIFT WRAP : A cryptic definition of what you can do to make an offering more attractive.

19a     Vegetable bowl depicted by artist (6)
RADISH : The artist belongs to the Royal Academy and then a synonym for a bowl.

21a     Son makes a sulky face and gushes (6)
SPOUTS : The abbreviation for son and a word that means makes a sulky face.

23a     Dish produced by American company absorbed by another being switched (8)
COUSCOUS : The abbreviation for United States and company appear inside the same abbreviations in reversed order.

25a     Very funny team breaking up (4-9)
SIDE-SPLITTING : A word for a team and one that means breaking up.

26a     Principal rumour that might hinder progress (8)
HEADWIND: Principal or the leader of a school and then a word for rumour or hint.

27a     Nodding acquaintances? They’re most agreeable (3-3)
YES-MEN : Nodding is how these male acquaintances might express acquiescence.


2d     Rising currency supporting poor writer in part of London (7)
HACKNEY : The Japanese unit of currency is reversed and appears below a word for a poor writer.

3d     Feel both poles should be in view (5)
SENSE : The letters for both magnetic poles are inside a word meaning to view.

4d     Instrument of terror deployed to limit parliamentary bill (9)
RETRACTOR : An anagram (deployed) of TERROR surrounds a parliamentary bill.

5d     Apostate‘s nervous twitch after present (7)
HERETIC : Present or at this place, and then a word for a nervous twitch.

6d     Animal‘s area squeezed between two cities (5)
NYALA : The abbreviation for area is between two major US cities.

7d     Prison food initially dire, badly cooked (4-5)
STIR-FRIED : One of the informal words for prison, the first letter of food and an anagram (badly) of DIRE.

8d     Queue long time for descent (7)
LINEAGE : A word for a queue and then one meaning a long time.

13d     A Tax Officer in sudden revising caused amazement (9)
ASTOUNDED : A from the clue and then an anagram (revising) of SUDDEN includes the abbreviation for Tax Officer.

15d     Attempt to support brand in woodwork (9)
MARQUETRY : A brand or make, especially of a car and then a synonym for attempt.

17d     The setter’s old-fashioned situation offering no way out (7)
IMPASSE : A short way that the setter could express his identity and a word from French meaning old-fashioned.

18d     Choice left editor merry (7)
PICKLED : A word meaning choice is followed by the abbreviations for ‘left’ and ‘editor’.

20d     Sticks up injured leg to run (7)
SMUGGLE : Reverse a word that means sticks or pastes and add an anagram (injured) of LEG.

22d     Dish from southern States — hot one (5)
SUSHI : Lots of little bits to this dish. The abbreviation for Southern, the United States, the abbreviation for hot, and the Roman numeral One.

24d     What one eats with cold joints? (5)
CHIPS : More food. The whole clue gives a possible definition. The word play is the abbreviation for cold and major joints of a skeleton.

We started off looking for an insurance meaning for 16a so will pick that as our favourite today.

Quickie pun   creche   +   doubt   =   crashed out

101 comments on “DT 28087

  1. yes, one of Jay’s gentler offerings. I enjoyed 18d and 24d because they raised a smile. Many thanks Jay and 2Kiwis. I hope there was no need for the 4d instrument of terror at the dentist.

    1. The dentist was just a check-up and polish so all set for another year with a bit of luck.

  2. Straight forward enough again today. I pondered over 4d for quite a while not recognising the the significance of ‘limit’ to mean what it did nor realising there was an anagram. Duh. So I bunged in the correct word without fully understanding why.

    1*/4* for me.

  3. Agree with the summary. Given that I’ve finished it before midday it had to be very gentle. Lots of lovely neat cluing but over too soon. Thus 1*/2* for me. I am now forced to attempt the Toughie ;)

  4. For me, not quite as gentle as suggested by the 2Ks as I had lots of head scratching. Last one in was 10a and that was last by a long way; the penny just would not drop and I was beginning to think that I would not make it before lights out last night. Overall, this one probably took longer than the time for Monday and Tuesday added together. So, I give it ***/**. Favourite 1a. Thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

  5. I also found this less gentle than the 2Kiwis found it but overall a good puzzle. 4d was a mystery to me too, just a write in and hope for the best. Thanks to Jay and to the 2Kiwis for the enlightenment.

  6. Did anyone else put a wrongly spelt guillotine in for 4 down? I was doing the puzzle without filling it in so the boss could do it when she gets home. That’s my excuse for the spelling mistake, but it did hold me up for quite some time.

    1. Reading the clue, my first thought was guillotine but I already had 1a in with its last letter (first of 4d) of R so it was clear that the answer was something else.

    2. If you’re worried about spoiling the crossword before your missus gets to it, just fill it in using invisible ink – that’d solve the problem for you! :-)

    3. Its tricky but they can be solved without writing anything in. I did Christams Eve’s puzzle that way

      1. I’ve done that a couple of times when I print off the puzzle to do whilst I have lunch in the staff restaurant at work, only to find that I have no pen with me when I get there.
        It adds an extra level of difficulty but is quite doable with enough concentration!

  7. I didn’t find it easy at all because I did most of it while sitting in the waiting room of a consultant. Given the all clear ! So I flew through the Toughie. Isn’t it amazing the way the brain is distracted by mood or anxiety.
    I liked a lot of the clues, including 6d, 16a and 25a.
    Thanks Kiwis and Jay.

    1. My consultant says there is no hope. So does Saint Sharon. Glad you have the all clear Una.

    2. Very good news indeed, Una. I hope the relief goes a little way to make up for all the worry you must have gone through beforehand.

    3. I just want to say , there are some very nice people on this blog .Supportive , sensitive and kind.The best kind of people.I feel honoured to be amongst you.

  8. Not as straightforward as the 2Kiwis thought, I’d give this a 2.5* as it had me thinking for a while with various clues.
    Had wrong answers in for 4d and 15d for quite a time which didn’t help.

    3* for enjoyment.

    Thanks to setter and 2Kiwis.

  9. I love Wednesday crosswords and there are always just a few that cause a spot of bother so 2* for difficulty and 4* for enjoyment.
    Today’s main problem, like Senf, was 10a – it had to be what it was but I still think I’m missing something.
    I was also quite slow with 20d and the last bit of 26a.
    Spent some time trying to justify ‘llama’ for 6d – a bad case of wrong city.
    I liked 25a and 7 and 24d. My favourite, just the one, was 18d.
    With thanks to Jay and to the 2K’s – I loved the pic for 26a.
    Having had a quick look at the Toughie I’ve decided that I really must go and cut the grass . . . :unsure:

  10. I found this quite taxing and yes I was one trying to fit guillotine in, misspelling and searching parliamentary information. However managed to complete except for 6d and 20d. I’m afraid I had to resort to the dreaded click here.
    Thanks to 2 Kiwis and to Jay.

  11. Definitely on the easier side today, but still enjoyable. Last ones for me were 4d and 10a,not sure I quite understand 10a. Many thanks to Jay and 2kiwis.

  12. Yes, gentle but enjoyable for me – I was slightly delayed by putting ‘tickled’ for 18d, which then caused problems for 16a, but soon worked it out…..1a was my favourite….*/**

  13. Gentle foodie fun.

    And there is nothing wrong with that. 18d made me smile, Omar’s answer made me smile more. The anagram circles were enjoyable and I thought 19a was quite clever even though I hate the stuff unless it is well disguised. Don’t like 23a either. 22d is OK when done properly…which is rarely, and I never eat 24d.

    Many thanks to Jay and to the 2K’s for a great blog as always. Glad the dentist was OK.

    Cold on the moors. The spooky fog has lifted and I can see things again now. Yesterday you could bump into yourself it was that bad.

    1. I make my own sushi. It is really quite easy, the trick is to use really fresh fish. Restaurants freeze the fish, apparently, which is why it doesn’t taste of anything.
      It is lovely , warm and sunny here.

      1. It’s something I’ve never tried which is a bit daft as Whitby is so close, therefore I have access to some wonderful fish. Do you use the ‘mat rolling’ things? I suspect there is a proper name for them.

        1. I do. I got the whole kit in Harvey Nicks(not a shop I usually go to).You can use Mirin or any sweet wine.The family regard sushi as a treat.

      1. I know…there is not even a 2a in the Toughie! Tomorrow’s prediction. I will love 6d.

  14. Gentle and enjoyable. 17D and 18D get my top spots. Thanks to Jay and the 2Kiwis.

  15. Lovely puzzle straightforward but very clever 😊 **/**** Thanks to 2x Ks & to Jay. Loved the quote from Rudyard Kipling and the Nyala photo. Favourites 6d, 26a & 20d 😍 Bring on the Thursday puzzle !! 😉

  16. Must be me, I think I have lost the ability to do cryptic crosswords judging by this weeks offerings. I found this almost impossible, extremely difficult.
    Looking forward to Friday when I hope Giovanni will renew my confidence after horrors like this.

  17. Let’s try to post again. Straightforward but enjoyable crossword, although I had trouble with 20d. 19 and 25a my favourites. Thanks to 2Kiwis and setter.

  18. I will go along with the 2Ks rating of 1*/3*. After last week’s trials and tribulations as indicated by comments posted on this site, this week has been a relative walk in the park. Today was certainly no exception. No standout favourite, although 18 down made me smile.

    Thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

    Lovely sunny day here in the Marches. Feels like Spring has finally arrived.

  19. Rather gentle, but quite enjoyable. Call it 1*/3.5*. Favourite clue either 17d or 20d. Thanks to Jay and the 2 Kiwis.

  20. A jolly jog with Jay – most enjoyable and much appreciated on a busy day.
    I had ‘interact’ for 10a and spent ages trying to justify it – that, plus trying to get ‘rack’ into 4d.
    Lots to like – 16,25&27a all have ticks as do 7,15&17a. Not going to try to pick a favourite, Kath!

    Thank you Jay and many thanks to 2Ks – what a super blog. Your pic at 21a reminded me how, whenever I see gargoyles in action, I think they’re being very ill – but I loved the 26a pic and also that of the 6d animal. They always look as though a child with a white crayon has been let loose on them.

    1. I never used to like gargoyles but since the Weeping Angles I think…”I wonder…” Love it.

    2. I’ve just seen you were providing technical advice on the interactive version of the Rookie this week, Jane!

  21. Thanks to Jay and to the 2 Kiwis for the review and hints. I enjoyed it, but it was over too quickly. 1a made me laugh, but my favourite was 6d. Last in was 20d. Was 1*/3* for me. Walking to Finchley now to run the squash Tournament.

  22. 10a and 16a took a bit more thinking than the rest.
    Liked all the food mentioned as we are preparing the Spring Menu.
    Need Framboise to validate the Indian Thalis. A good excuse for her to reminisce on her time in Mumbai.
    Favourite is 7d.
    Thanks to Jay and to 2ks for the review.

  23. Much more to my taste today than yesterday’s puzzle, as Jay seldom if ever disappoints.

    I appreciated something not too taxing after a couple of hours in the garden cleaning out my fishpond, and this fitted the bill exactly. The usual elegant Wednesday surfaces were naturally in evidence, and my joint favourite clues of the day were 5a and 20d.

    Many thanks to Mr. Mutch and to the 2Ks.

  24. 1*/3*. Light but very enjoyable as always on a Wednesday.

    Many thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

  25. Usual Wednesday fare. Thanks Very Mutchly to Jay and thanks to the 2Ks especially for the Kipling poem. One of my favourites which I loved reading to my two daughters.

  26. A pleasant offering from my favourite setter. 10a and 16a held me up somewhat but completed within the time available.
    1a was the favourite. ** ****
    Thanks to Jay and the 2 Kiwis.

  27. A nice gentle return after a couple of days away from Crosswordland. Jay seems to be very consistent, but I seem to be wildly inconsistent when doing his crosswords – sometimes I can go hint-free, like today, other times I can’t get started. Struggled a bit with the NW, with 10a LOI after getting it wrong with interact first. For once, I have different favourites to everyone else – 9a made me chuckle, and 3d got second place, for no real reason.
    Thanks to Jay and the 2Kiwis.

  28. 19a – anything in the wordplay that indicates that RA comes before DISH?? Held me up that as I assumed it ended in RA

  29. Late start and not too easy for me but did only need h&t for one clue, a bit rushed but very enjoyable. Not enough hours in the day, the two plots and the two greenhouses on the allotment plus the one at home, are going to take more of my time now spring is nearly here. Planted broad bean plants today and rotovated all the plots. Shattered!

    H&T for 22d

    Favourite clues : None today just to play devil’s advocate (actually lots)

    Rating 2.5 / 3.5
    Thanks to the two KW’s and the setter

        1. Oh dear – silly me! So sorry. Thank you for your superb review. Needed a lot of your help today. Didn’t find it as easy as you.

          1. I do it all the time Jan the pangram question I posted yesterday was a prime example.

  30. A bit of a struggle today but an enjoyable battle. About to lose my job so much on my mind.
    Fav was 23a, very clever, 16a was a bit weak I thought, as was 10a, never heard of that.
    Thanks to 2xk’s and Jay, my favourite setter.

    1. Sorry to hear about the job situation HYD. Suppose a positive is that it could mean more time for cryptics but that doesn’t put food on the table. Thinking of you.

      1. That’s tough HIYD. Hopefully something will turn up it usually does. Good luck, stick with the crossword it does help to take your thought’s away from other things. Keep having a smile on this blog also that’s got to be good for all of us.

        1. Thanks for all your good wishes. I take a Mr. Micawber approach to life, so something will come along.
          If all else fails, I will just have to sell my body!!
          Lovely people on this blog.
          Thanks again.

          1. Judging by your posts, many of us see how much progress you are making, you have tenacity and a willingness to learn and take advice, and utilise it, which will stand you in excellent stead. Mrs TT2 and I eventually found, that due to our combined lack of talents, and unemployability, we’d be better off doing our own thing, so started on our own business, won’t look back! We wish you well, you’ll be fine. BTW, be careful about selling your body, a few years ago I had to do the same, came home with £32.50. Mrs TT2 asked which one gave £2.50, shamefully I had to admit they all did, never again! Good luck.

    2. I am so sorry about the job. Been there, done that, I was well up in middle age when PanAm folded, such a shock to change directions and learn to start again. I wish you all the best and hope something comes along soon.

    3. I know how you feel, HoofIt :(. You have my sympathy, and wishes that something else – something better – comes along very soon.

  31. Yes, I enjoyed this although did need one or two hints at the end. I also had 18d beginning with a ‘t’, so that held up 16a. Liked 1a,19a, 24d, 25a. Did not know of the Word in 4d. Thanks to the 2 kiwis and the setter for a lot of fun.

  32. Not much to say about this one. It’s the usual smooth Wednesday stuff but it was over before it really began.

    Favourite has to be 1a as I have a rather bizarre metal image of Chas and his mum behind a bar pulling pints :lol:

    Thanksto Jay and the Kiwis.

  33. Well I did not find today’s puzzle that easy! This seems to be a recurring happening for me to struggle with easy ones perhaps because I am trying too hard to find something really obscure when in fact the solution is much more straightforward! Failed on 10a, 16a (perhaps because I had tickled for 18d) and 4d – thought of guillotine but of course it would not fit!!!! Oh well tomorrow is another day. Favourite 5a closely followed by 25a (sorry Kath) perhaps because I instantly thought of the right expression. Many thanks to the 2Kiwis and to Jay. 2.5*/3*

  34. Altogether a gratifyingly cryptic test. Thank you Jay and also 2Ks particularly for saving me from unparsed interact in 10a (last one in). East side less troublesome than the West. Lots of nice clues but no particular Fav. ***/***.

  35. Morning all. Interesting to read the huge range of difficulty found by different solvers. We just raced through this one. It just shows how different we all are, and a very good thing that is too.
    A clear crisp morning just dawning here. The sort of conditions that give a hint that firewood things need to be sorted out soon, but not today as it is a golf day.

  36. Good evening everybody.

    A joint affair today with me leading off. All over in fairly short order.


  37. Barcelona lose, Djokovic loses and Man Utd win. Has the world been turned upside down while I wasn’t watching?

  38. **/**** from me. I like elegant clues and solutions that raise a smile. 9a my favourite. Thanks to 2 Kiwis and setter.

  39. We really liked this puzzle, a Goldilocks for us. Just what’s required when the rain seems to forget to have a rest. Thanks to the setter and 2 K’s, glad the teeth are OK!

  40. Late again through the cat flap after a busy day including a trip into town for a recording of Just a Minute. I am glad that I am allowed hesitation, deviation and repetition in my posts.

    For me the crossword was light and fluffy, as I often find Jay. 1a raised a smile as did 18d. There were other smiles too, but I don’t have the memory to say what prompted them.

    Thanks to Jay and the 2Ks who collectively never fail to brighten up a Wednesday.

  41. Top-notch again from Jay. I enjoyed it a lot, despite feeling a bit odd under heavy painkillers for mystery shoulder problems. Came home from work early, feeling quite peculiar, but all that fell away with a pint and a puzzle. 1a is top of the bill for me. Ta to Jay and K-squared. 2*/4*

  42. Nice one from Jay. It’s catch up time again for me so I started with this one. I’m glad I did because it was an enjoyable puzzle to do. 4d was my favourite; 2/3* overall.
    Thanks to Jay, and to the Kiwis for their review.

  43. I liked 5A and 14A best of all, for the really nice surface reading and tight construction. On a nice sunny day in Brighton where I sat by the sea to complete this offering, I’ll give it 1.5* / 3*.

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