DT 28144 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28144 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28144 (Hints)

Big Dave’s Saturday Crossword Club

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As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, an assortment of clues, including some of the more difficult ones, have been selected and hints provided for them.

Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”. Where the hint describes a construct as “usual” this means that more help can be found in The Usual Suspects, which gives a number of the elements commonly used in the wordplay. Another useful page is Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing, which features words with meanings that are not always immediately obvious.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions.

Some hints follow.


1a    Songs of Praise requires additional contribution by charity (6)
An additional contribution to a letter followed by relief given out of charity to the poor – did wonder about the use of requires rather than require in the surface reading, but Songs of Praise is a programme on UK Television

8a    Sort of country inn with something left outside (8)
An inn surrounded by something left from an earlier time

10a    Tool works without resistance (6)
A verb meaning works steadily around (without – ouch!) R(esistance)

12a    Talk with woman, the lady of the house (10)
A four-letter verb meaning to talk informally followed by a woman’s name

13a    More advanced form of bingo, darling! (8,4)
This additional advance of money is an anagram (form) of BINGO DARLING

16a    Spend childhood entertaining grand whim (7,5)
A verb meaning to spend or xxx and one’s childhood around (entertaining) G(rand)

23a    Fat duke’s excellent in old-fashioned way (8)
D(uke) followed by an old-fashioned word for excellent

24a    Crook logged out (6)
This crook or bend is an anagram (out) of LOGGED

25a    Iodine applied to blood around new cut (6)
The chemical symbol for iodine followed by a word meaning blood around N(ew) gives a verb meaning to cut or disregard


1d    Claim made about Norse god a lot (8)
A claim or excuse around the name of one of the Norse gods

5d    Before being grappled by Japanese wrestling ace (7)
A three-letter prefix meaning before inside (being grappled by) a form of wrestling which is popular in Japan

9d    Having rushed around, burn that being barbecued (11)
A verb meaning rushed around a burn or small stream

14d    One’s upfront in Aegean, getting hot in swim with skimpy costume (9)
The first two letters of Aegean are an example (one) of this grammatical term which is derived by inserting H(ot) between a three-letter swim and a skimpy costume

15d    Look for a scrap, namely to get one’s own back (8)
The two-letter Latin abbreviation for namely followed by a verb meaning to get one’s own back

18d    Turn and throw baby in pond? (7)
A two-letter turn or attempt followed by a verb meaning to throw

19d    Dispute with Iceland died right down, being one to avoid fighting (6)
Start with a fishing dispute with Iceland (3,3), that ran from 1958 – 76, and move the D(ied) right down to the end

21d    Aquatic creature in Italian river (5)
A colloquial word meaning “in” or “with it” followed by Gnomey’s favourite (will he ever live that one down?) Italian river

The Crossword Club is now open.

Could new readers please read the Welcome post and the FAQ before posting comments or asking questions about the site.

As this is a Prize crossword, please don’t put any ANSWERS, whether WHOLE, PARTIAL or INCORRECT, or any ALTERNATIVE CLUES in your comment. If in doubt, leave it out!

Please read these instructions carefully. Offending comments may be redacted or, in extreme cases, deleted.

The Quick Crossword pun: mull+bury+bush=mulberry bush

53 comments on “DT 28144 (Hints)

  1. I thought this was the best Saturday crossword for some time. A bit of a head-scratcher in parts. Thanks to setter and BD.

  2. Dear God but the bottom half was tough! Had to google *** after reading the hint, not come across that before. Surely 6d should read she rather than its? Thought 24a is normally hyphenated?
    Liked the top, hated the bottom!
    Is it my imagination or are Saturday’s offerings getting much tougher these days? Is the DT getting too many entries perhaps.
    Thx to all

    1. Brian you are priceless.

      “not come across that [namely] before” – from an earlier puzzle, as this is a prize puzzle I’ll not provide a link, “don’t understand the namely in 19a”.

  3. A good challenge today but completed successfully in time to watch our boys in Australia. I hope my feeling of wellbeing is not destroyed. 18d amused and I thought 14d was a clever clue – too clever for me for a long time 😎

    1. Wellbeing intact, blood pressure tablets effective – just😄🏉😄🏉😄

  4. Not much pain today but plenty to amuse although a couple in the South did need a bit of extra cogitation. Don’t know if publications can print 14 downs – if not I wonder why not? Thanks Mr. Ron and BD.
    Brian, doubt DT minds an increased number of prize entries because that swells their contact list!

  5. 3*/4*. This was an excellent puzzle which was challenging (particularly with the spelling of several answers!) and very enjoyable. It was peppered with humour and had smooth surfaces throughout. I’ll go further than neveracrossword’s assessment and say that I thought this was the best Saturday puzzle I can remember.

    My page is littered with asterisks. 13a, 16a, 14d, & 19d got two asterisks each but 24a & 18d were my joint favourites.

    Many thanks to Mr Ron and to BD (except, tut, tut, for the misspelling of programme in your hint for 1a!).

  6. I agree, an excellent puzzle, although I did find it quite difficult. Some lovely clues and I particularly liked 16a (my last in) and 14d which made me laugh. ***/****. Thanks to setter and BD.

  7. Had such a good laugh despite all the sad news in the DT’s front page.
    Lord Guthrie is still alive and well apparently.
    Enough said.
    While the crossword was being printed, I already solved 1a and 1d reading the clues on the screen and thought it was going to be a walk in the park.
    Claimed victory a bit too soon as it took quite a while to finish.
    3d and 24a were new to me.
    Favourite is 21d.
    Thanks to the setter and to BD for the blog.

  8. Finding the puzzle on the back page of the paper was a good start and it continued to be an enjoyable challenge with 9d being my favourite, because it was a cleverly-worded clue with the comma being used for misdirection, and 14d a close second. I wondered whether our American cousins, who tend to simplify our language, spelled the answer to 14d in the same way and the Merriam-Webster dictionary confirms that, in fact, they do.

  9. I had the same experience as JL where I assumed this would be a walk in the park but found that the terrain then became considerably more rocky. I may even have used a shortcut or two. Lots of good stuff.

    Many thanks to the setter and to BD.

  10. Fun!

    Really like the aquatic creature, the fur fit for purpose, the tool and the bingo of course darling…I don’t think I’ve ever really said the word darling before.

    24a was new.

    My head is fuzzy. Stupid cocktails.

    Many thanks to the setter and to BD for a great blog.

  11. This was at the hard end of the Saturday puzzle spectrum I reckon. It needed a lot of thought and I doubt we will see the phrase “read and write” today. That said, I found it very enjoyable and more so because of the relative difficulty. 16 across my favourite and 3.5*/4* overall.

    Thanks to Mr Ron and BD for his continued support for this excellent site.

    Off to Birmingham shortly for a concert at Symphony Hall. Congratulations to England for their memorable win down under.

  12. Yeah…on the back page! But oh dear, yet again I agree with Brian. We must think along the same lines. After a reasonable start I confess to quite a struggle and lots of face-pulling when I finally had the answer. Still, I maintain it’s good for me! Thanks BD I really couldn’t have done it without you today!

  13. A tricky one for me today
    Appeared stumped after 1st read through but it came to me
    Still can’t get ny head round 15d
    Thanks to BD for tips
    12a my fave

  14. I agree with RD that this is the best Sat puzzle in memory.

    No real fav as the whole thing is brill, although I did like the baby in the pond.

    Thanks to the setter and BD

    PS, cold seems to have moved on and is probably infecting someone else now.

  15. Absolutely loved this, used up all my little grey cells but what a feeling of achievement when I finally put pencil down. Far too many ticks to pick just one favourite but 19d and 24a were high on list. :yahoo: Will now tiptoe quietly off to try NTSPP but suspect it is a forlorn hope that I will get anywhere. Wish me luck.

  16. RD and pommers got it dead right, wotta super puzzle.
    I cannot narrow down a fave, but 12a and 18d were full of smiles.
    Like J-L, I thought it was going to be a walkover as I read 1a and 1d.
    I did need the hints to understand 19d, didn’t remember the thingy with Iceland.
    Thanks to setter and to BD, lovely start to Saturday.

    I agree J-L, the world has, indeed, gone totally mad.

  17. Enjoyed this week’s puzzle and managed to do it all apart from 5d without help. Can’t think what happened to my brain last week!
    I look forward to next Saturday, as this is the only crossword I try to do regularly. I also enjoy all the comments. Thanks BD for the help..

  18. Thanks to the setter and to Big Dave for the hints. A very enjoyable puzzle, bottom half quite tricky. Wondered if it’s a Shamus puzzle? Favourite was 19d. Last in was 23a. Was 3*/4* for me. Was watching a trailer of Tarzan during the adverts, and got the answer to 21d, spooky.

  19. Absolutely lovely crossword, bingo darling my favourite. Pity about our rugby though

  20. Well that was trickier than the usual Saturday offering. Very rewarding if a struggle at times. I loved 14d when the penny dropped. Thanks to the setter and BD for the hints.

  21. Brain seems to have turned to mush since arriving back in England on holiday, perhaps they put something in the Sussex water… But after a bit of a struggle finally got this one, well mostly. Unlike our previous 3 trips we have not seen much sun, but have only got caught in the rain once and the cool weather is a welcome relief from South Florida. But who cares about the weather when we have already had smoked haddock, good old British sausages and bacon, Chelsea buns and Victoria sponge cake, yummy, and not at the same time. And fish and chips of course. Off to the pub for Sunday roast tomorrow. 😊

  22. Definitely a trickier than usual crossword for a Saturday; most enjoyable.And for once I did it with pen and paper….. and whiteout! That made for a different experience.
    Baby in the pond was my favourite and overall, I think 3/3*
    Thanks to the setter and to BD for his hints.

  23. Thought this was excellent. On the harder side, but it is the Saturday prize puzzle, so it’s what we expect. And we’ve all got plenty of time on our hands on a Saturday, haven’t we? (3 hours gardening this afternoon. Gah. Why does everything grow so fast this time of year?) Last in 18 and 23, which were also two of my favourites, along with 14d.

  24. Been out all day so only just finished it. Very enjoyable and quite tough. Liked esp 9d, 14d and 18d (which was the last in). Thanks all.

  25. Great stuff! Tougher at the bottom than at the top, but more interesting too. 2*/4.5* overall, and pretty much on a par for enjoyment with one of Virgilius’ offerings (high praise indeed). As for a favourite clue, it would have been 14d (with honourable mentions for 13, 16, 23 or 25 across, and 18d) but I have to go for 19d. I was there!

    Many thanks to the setter, and to BD.

  26. Very enjoyable, with lots of smiles among the excellent clues. Thank you to the setter, and BD.

  27. Ouch! Had to reach for the e-help just to get started! Got there in the end, but it took a loooooong time!!

  28. Brilliant puzzle. I loved it. Hard, though. Hardly got anywhere on first pass but dogged determination and the occasional flash of inspiration saw me home. Thanks to BD for parsing a couple of bung-ins and to the setter for a little splash of joy on a grey day. 3*/5*.

  29. Not all that easy . I particularly liked 9d and 14d, 25a and 8a.
    Re 14d, as a small child , I made a 14d out of words which don’t actually have one, it is one of those family things which has never been forgotten and they are still laughing.
    Thanks to the setter and BD.

  30. Spent the morning watching England thrash Australia, then off to a vintage car rally.Got back in time to catch the last of the daylight. Was able to sit out in the garden at long last. No real problems with this today,but had to revisit 11a. A lot of fun. Thank you setter and BD

  31. Haven’t been on the blog for some time. Our daily rag used to run crossword concurrently with DT but after a few public holidays and no publications the crossword is out of sync. Here in UK for two weeks and first duty yesterday was to get my copy of the DT. And couldn’t start til after a wedding. So I found the north easy enough but then went brain dead. At least I can show my head today after my team scraped home against Ireland yesterday. Thanks one and all for the blog and your comments.

  32. Like Gene Hackman in Mississippi Burning : “This is tricky”…
    In 7d, the answer is clear, but I can’t see how the word forming the last three letters is clued???

  33. Doesn’t seem worth posting the day after, but having moved recently don’t get the paper until Saturday evening. However I feel compelled to say what a challenging but clever puzzle this was.

  34. Very enjoyable, I wish I had more time to do it justice, I needed BD’s hints (thanks) and use of the BRB.
    Spent father’s day painting the fence!!!
    Thanks to the setter.

  35. If the R&W brigade found this hard going, then what hope was there for a tyro solver? Needed a record 10 hints (1a, 10a, 16a, 1d, 9d, 14d, 15d, 18d, 19d & 21d). I found some of the misdirection very difficult, and I am convinced that the Saturday puzzle has generally become much harder. I can’t remember the last time I completed it without help.

    So a 1*/ 5* for me. Many thanks to BD for hints without which I would be floundering in a sea of uncertainty.

  36. All done bar 23a. Only one answer coming up in crossword solver which is what a *********** does but still don’t get it. Any help gratefully received. Thank you!!

    1. Welcome to the blog Emma

      Please observe the request to not publish alternative clues on posts for prize crosswords. There is a hint for this one – try reading it again.

  37. Had visitors for w/e so was late starting – got nowhere and struggled, but eventually on Monday completed w/o hints. Agree it was an excellent puzzle with entertaining clues. Last one in was 21d. Best was16a.
    BD – your 10a hint was a bit blatant!!
    Thx to you and setter for the challenge!

      1. BD. Sorry to harp on about this, but without can and does mean surrounding. Have a look at the primary definition in the SOED: Without – “On the outside or outer surface; externally”. Therefore it would be correct to write: “The hard shell is without the soft part of the egg”. Presumably, that’s why the setters keep using this much-maligned construct in their clues. Why is everyone on here so against it?

  38. I did this Sat aft. Excellent! Best one of the week and much better that the normal Saturday offering. 3*/4*

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