DT 28199 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28199

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28199

Hints and tips by Miffypops

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating. (Nowt to do with MP) – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

To all Olympians, a heartfelt round of applause. To all who helped them along the way, another heartfelt round of applause. Roll on Tokyo. I still think that the scheduling of The Marathon is harsh on the armchair viewer. Having the heats in the morning and the final in the same day might be fine for the athletes but is makes for boring television.

Today’s puzzle by Rufus has his usual mix of trickery made easier by the use of a couple of chestnuts so not too difficult a solve but I am sure a couple will stump enough people.

The hints and tips below are my attempt to guide you through this puzzle and cut through the mystery that surrounds the cluing of cryptic crossword puzzles. Definitions are underlined. If you are still bamboozled after reading the hints and tips then click on the greyed out box to reveal the answer. Illustrations and musical clips may or may not have anything to do with the clue or the solution

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a    The provision of a home for a small charge (8)
ADOPTION: This small charge is a child. The answer is the legal process by which means one provides a home for a child in need. God bless those who do so.

6a    They are bound to hold different views, for instance (6)
ALBUMS: Bound books . The views are photographs.

9a    Sailor girl, one with unmarried sisters in her care (6)
ABBESS: Our usual suspect for a sailor and then a girl, it could be any girl but this one was apparently a good queen. Together they provide the head of a nunnery

10a    One having a row at end of day in the kitchen (8)
SCULLERY: A description of a rower who uses two oars is followed by the final letter (at the end) of the word day.

11a    First course made clear study on WW1 battleground (8)
CONSOMMÉ: Our regular word for study is followed by one of the most famous of WW1 battles to provide a clear pale thin uninteresting soup. The only time I ate it back in the seventies it was as dull as dishwater. The last time this answer appeared I described the soup thus and several comments disagreed with me but none invited me to try their version so speaking from my own experience it is as pale thin and as uninteresting as Doom Bar bitter

12a    Terribly chesty, cut down the weed? (6)
SCYTHE: Hey. My kind of anagram (terribly) of CHESTY.

13a    From which to draw money for the meat? (5,7)
JOINT ACCOUNT: A cryptic description of a way of banking used by many couples. I have never been trusted with one by Saint Sharon.

16a    Electrical fault that racing drivers should be able to get round quickly (5,7)
SHORT CIRCUIT: The definition of this electrical fault is also a description of a racetrack that only covers a small distance.

19a    First form make a fuss? (6)
CREATE: A double definition. The first being as God did with the world.

21a    Link accepted by spiteful female gossip (8)
CHITCHAT: This link is a knot used to attach a rope to something else. It is to be placed inside (accepted by) a word meaning a spiteful female

23a    Murder — one group of detectives seen in house (8)
HOMICIDE: Take the letter that looks like one and add the initials of our criminal investigation department. Now place these letters inside a house or abode. Job done. Just do as you are told and the answer will come.

24a    Cramped Northern shaft (6)
NARROW: N(orthern) is followed by a shaft. This time a weapon consisting of a thin, straight stick with a sharp point, designed to be shot from a bow.

25a    Throw oneself into gym without a breather (6)
PLUNGE: Our usual suspect for gym or Physical Exercise is placed around (without) one of our breathing organs

  ARVE Error: need id and provider

26a    Workers, perhaps none better, but all they make goes on horses (8)
SADDLERS: The clue describes those workers who make seats that go on the backs of horses. I cannot see what the words ‘perhaps none better’ are doing in the clue. Maybe just helping the surface read along.


2d    He must have been given credit for something (6)
DEBTOR: This person who owes money must have been lent it (given credit) in the first place

3d    Iron clasp (5)
PRESS: A double definition. The first meaning to smooth out creases in clothing using a hot flat metal plate.

4d    It’s not easy for him to get off at night (9)
INSOMNIAC: A very playful clue that has been seen in a few different guises in the past. This person isn’t failing to get off work or failing to get off a bus. He or she isn’t failing to get off with a potential partner. No the failure is not getting off to sleep.

5d    Beginning Northern climb (7)
NASCENT: N(orthern) followed by an example of what a climb is particularly applied to the climbing of mountains.

6d    Joins a dog-end that’s picked up (5)
ABUTS: Turn around (picked up) what a fag end is known as and join it with the A from the clue.

7d    William has attempt at making butter (5,4)
BILLY GOAT: Take the common name for William. Add a two lettered word meaning having an attempt and add the word AT from the clue to find this adult male animal that might butt you with its horns.

8d    Stepping out for 31 days in Greece’s capital (8)
MARCHING: A month containing 31 days, in from the clue and capital letter from the word Greece

13d    Arab girl rings doctor up in a novel (9)
JORDANIAN: Once again we have a girl, any girl as the wordplay gives no clues. She is to be placed around (rings) a reversed abbreviation for doctor indicated by the word up in a down clue. This is all followed by an anagram (novel) of IN A. The girl’s name in question is the name of my late mother and my youngest daughter who is always referred to as Joni.

14d    Admonished as a result of bad education (9)

15d    Partly burn solid fuel that draws well (8)
CHARCOAL: This sketching medium can be found by taking a word which means to partly burn so as to blacken the surface and a black solid fossil fuel

  ARVE Error: need id and provider

17d    Noisy game? (7)
RACKETS: a ball game for two or four people played in a plain four-walled court, distinguished from squash in particular by the use of a solid, harder ball is also a right old din

18d    Indication of support to approve (6)
FAVOUR: A double definition. The first being a thing such as a badge or knot of ribbons that is given or worn as a mark of liking or support.

20d    Pick hat up and finally leave (5)
ELITE: Crosswordland’s favourite cockney hat is reversed (up) and the last letter (finally) of the word leave. If I were Deep Threat I would play a clip of “Where did you get that hat” but I am not DT so I won’t.

22d    Strain of the present day (5)
CAROL: Present day is Christmas day. A strain is the sound of a piece of music. These are the pieces of music traditionally played on Christmas day.

Only 18 letters worth of anagrams today. That is better.

The Quick Crossword pun: infant+tree=infantry

87 comments on “DT 28199

  1. 2*/4*. Lovely fun again on a Monday. I raced through three quarters of this puzzle but then got held up in the SE corner taking my overall time up to 2*.

    I wasn’t sure about the answer to 3d being synonymous with clasp but I found it listed in my BRB.

    Many thanks to Rufus and to MP.

  2. Textbook Rufus. Thanks to him and many thanks also to Miffy for a PopsicleR of a review.

    Apologies to RD for the Americanism above. :)

    I was hoping to find out what I’d missed at 26a, but I will just have to remain clueless and be happy that I’m not in the saddle today.

      1. I got that, Gazza, it’s the “perhaps none better” that doesn’t sit quite right with me as saying that perhaps none bet or none are betters.

    1. I took 6a as implying that some workers put all they make by betting on horse-racing, but, although these specific workers might not be betters, they still put all they make on the horses. Does that make some sense?

      P.S. Your comment is not a clue or an answer so your Americanism is fine with me. :wink:

      1. Yes it does make sense! The words help the surface but also act as misdirection to send you up the garden path by making you think about gambling. Wouldn’t the clue work better as: “perhaps non-betters”?

  3. Not really to my liking, not enough variety in the type of clues. I did manage most of it, but like Rabbit Dave I got stuck in the SE corner. 2*/2* Many thanks to Rufus and to Miffypops for the explanations.

  4. I was also puzzled by the clue for 26a. While I felt sure I had the answer I sat and puzzled mightily to understand something I felt sure I had missed.
    I thought there were a lot of double definitions in this puzzle.

    2*/2* for me.

  5. Took me a bit longer than usual today but well worth it. Struggled with 19a and 20d which was finally solved with help from MP. So thanks go to MP and Rufus.

  6. Held up in SW then remembered hatstand from a week or so ago. Found reasonable and a nice start to the week.
    Took 21a to refer to that which joins car and caravan (yes I was once but those days are long gone).
    Thanks to setter & MP for hints. Is the ale really that bad??

      1. It must be better than my enforced tipple but used to enjoy Wadworths 6X back in the days

          1. Usually the blogger has a row of faint stars in circles next to his or her name. Seems to have gone walkabout. But my windows phone version of the blog is back to normal.

              1. Thank you – I like to know these things. Thank you again, Dave, for your excellent blog and dedication. Top man! Would love to drop in for a pint one day…

  7. Pretty good start to the week, 6d fooled me until near the end.
    Not sure about 20d “elite” but hey ho.
    Thanks to Rufus for good word play and to Miffypops for the usual entertaining blog.

    1. Apparently, as I have been previously corrected, it’s ‘heigh-ho’. No idea why, though. Pleased to meet you in crosswordland.

  8. Enjoyable, but took me a while, possibly because there are a number of clues that if you don’t ‘see’ the answer there isn’t much else in the wording to help? Or maybe that’s just me .Liked 13 and 19a. Also wanted to see if there was any discussion around 26a . Thanks to all.

  9. For me a super crossword with an outstanding clue in 22d but rather let down by 19a, 21a and 20d which I thought rather poor clues. Where is the hat in 21d?
    Thx to all

        1. And where might you find that information out? Honestly Brian, you drive me to despair!

        2. Mrs B is a cockney and is as puzzled as me. Cockney for a hat is a Titfe meaning Tit For Tat or hat.

          1. Further delving into Google revealed the words to Any Old Iron:
            You look neat. Talk about a treat!
            You look so dapper from your napper to your feet.
            Dressed in style, brand-new tile,
            And your father’s old green tie on.
            Amazing one can live in London all your life and still come across terms you have never heard before. One for the old memory box.

            1. I thought your memory box was already full as you have been rejecting new entries for the last few years.

        3. Ditto.
          I’m a Londoner and I have never heard of tile = hat…Is it rhyming slang or something????

          1. Not rhyming slang but features in both the song Brian mentions above and Where did you get that hat? Where did you get that tile?

            It has to do with tiles going on roofs and hats/tiles going on top of your head

            1. Thanks Sue. I didn’t know the second line of the song!!!
              Good stuff, all this, learn something new every day….

              1. A quick Google search of this site confirms that neither you nor Brian had problems with a tile meaning a hat in earlier DT cryptic crosswords. :scratch:

              2. HIYD
                It came up the other way round (tile in the clue hat in the answer) with hatstand perhaps it was when you were on hols. You are normally on the ball (sorry for the pun) with things like that

                1. Hatstand rings a distant bell…
                  ‘Tile’ = ‘Hat’ is firmly etched into my brain…Until the next time it comes up…..

    1. Brian. I’ve seen tile for hat dozens of times in cryptic crosswords (including the DT) since 1970 – but as they say, they’re only easy if you know the answer!

      1. Exactly. Not only that, it came up quite recently I seem to remember. Not nearly as bad as ‘bumbershoot’!

  10. Having read the comments, I agree that 26a should have said better(s),still a tad clumsy in my opinion.
    Enjoyable Monday solve and a*/*** for me, liked 18d, have seen this double definition before, usually involving ‘rosette’.
    Agree with Miffypops comments on the marathon, watched Mo live win the 5000m-nearly spilled the Saint Emilion Grand Cru ! cheers.

  11. Once again a pleasant start to the week on a beautifully sunny morning – thank you Rufus, also MP. Made life difficult for myself in bottom right-hand corner by trying second in 18d but 26a had to be so went back to the drawing-board. For fear of attracting the wrath of she who must be obeyed I will merely say that amongst so many excellent clues I really liked 13a, 7d, 22d and 26a. **/****.

  12. Enjoyed this immensely. Thanks Rufus. Thanks Miffypops for hints – just needed 21a. Got the answer but could not parse for some reason. Last two in were 25a and 20d. Not my favourites. Loved 7d and many more. Like thinking outside the box. I eagerly looked to see if Brian had dropped in – as thought he would hate the clues I love. To my surprise I find we are for once on the same wave length.

  13. A terrific puzzle ,although I didn’t think it was all that easy.The SE corner took a while.
    Thanks to Miffypops and Rufus.

  14. As others have said, I thought I was missing something vital in 26a but apparently not.
    Other than that, quite a good start to the puzzle week with podium places going to 13&16a plus 7&22d.

    Thanks to Rufus and to MP – that was a random clip for 25a, even for you!

  15. Thanks MP for the excellent hints. I wrote about 10 answers in straight away, but the rest took some getting.
    I ran aground in the SW corner,
    I was confused by a few things today
    20d – Tile = Hat (see above) – Now solved by CS!!!
    21a – Should it not be hyphenated?
    26a – Like MP, confused by the ‘is none better’…
    Favourite was 8d, as at one time I had checking letters to fit “Athens” in there!!! LOL what a numpty!!!
    Thanks MP and Rufus

  16. This is one of the most enjoyable Rufus puzzles for a long time IMHO. Ok there are a few old chestnuts but I enjoyed it so much that I’ll overlook those. Loved 1, 6 & 21a – 1 & 8d – but my favourite is 22d.

    Thanks to Rufus for the enjoyment and to our scholarly landlord for his review.

  17. Apart from 19a which held me up for a while, everything went in quite smoothly. I faffed around with 20d also come to think of it – I’d forgotten ’tile’ yet again…
    Favourite for me was 13a just because it made me smile. 2/3* overall.
    Thanks to Rufus, and to MP for his review.

  18. Everything a Rufus puzzle should be. Can’t name a favourite as there as too many good clues that just made for such a nice solve.

    Many thanks to Rufus and to MP for his usual great blog…and for whatever the hell the clip for 25a is.

    Well done to all Team GB athletes for their efforts. Although the highlight of the games will always be the Mongolian Strip Protest….mostly so you can say the words “Mongolian Strip Protest.’

    1. Don’t know if that is the intention of the clue, I read it as simply a pun on a large lump of meat.

    2. They don’t – you’ve extracted four words from the clue which don’t make much sense on their own.

  19. Agree with Toadson, and Jane. A few rather uninspiring clues, but overall OK. I also got held up in SE corner, and I’m in the ‘don’t like 26a much’ camp.
    Best laugh of the day – CS’ reply to comment #10!
    Thanks to all as ever.

  20. Nice start to the week thank you Rufus 😊 */*** Thanks to MP for his blog 👍 Liked 1a, 9a and 18d 😍 If my memory serves me (an increasingly rare occurrence) we had the controversial cockney “at” very recently 😏

  21. In my neck of the woods, a dog end is not a fag end – in fact a dog end is a tail. A fag end is the stub or butt.

    1. Fag ends were dog ends where I grew up. I still ask my staff to sweep up the dog ends outside the pub. Some smokers just have as much desire to use an ashtray as Brian has to use the BRB

      1. Growing up my family always called them dog ends. I don’t have a BRB either, I assume crossword related dictionary, I guess I might be able to get it on Amazon if available in the US?

      2. Or consult Usual Suspects for hat – unless BD snook it in when we weren’t looking.

    2. Does that mean you were unable to solve that clue, or did you actually know to what a ‘dog end’ was referring? Just curious.
      No logic in English, let alone colloquialisms.

      Incidentally, why is a ‘dog end’ the tail and not the nose? Surely it has a front end and a back end.

  22. I agree with SL, the best Rufus puzzle for ages. I can’t recall a Monday backpager with quite so few anagrams and quite so many trademark cryptic definitions, even if a few caused some serious head scratching, particularly in the NW corner.

    As Hanni says, there were so many excellent clues it’s hard to choose one overall favourite – so I’ve picked six instead! 6a, 10a, 16a, 7d, 15d and 22d earned special ticks from me.

    The puzzles for the rest of the week certainly have a hard act to follow. Many thanks to Mr. Squires and to Miffypops.

  23. Thanks to Rufus for creating a puzzle that put a smile on my face. My favourite is 22d but special mention should go to 13a and 7d. Last one in was 19a. Thanks also to Miffypops for the hints.

  24. !0A Got me confused around top right corner. Thought the word was for a room adjoining a kitchen for washing up etc. Needed a cheat, thanks Miffypops. Otherwise a fun start to the week. Some nice word play i.e. 9A. Thanks to the setter and Miffypops.

  25. Very Nice start to the week thank you Rufus 😊 */*** Thanks to MP for his blog 👍 Liked 1a, 9a and 18d 😍 If my memory serves me (an increasingly rare occurrence) we had the controversial cockney “at” very recently 😏

  26. Perfect Rufus puzzle, great fun, a little bit trickier than usual.
    Pat on the back for me, I actually remembered the hat in 20d, wonder if I will next time.
    Didn’t find anything odd in “none better” in 26a, great clue.
    My fave, I think, is 8d, but so many that I liked.
    Thanks to Rufus, and to M’pops for his great review.

  27. Thanks to Rufus for a great puzzle and to MP for the hints. Great clues that made most answers fall into place, with just a few that were obvious once I read the hints. Shouldn’t 17d clue be plural as answe is? Will definitely remember the cockney hat. Must have missed or forgotten that from before. Too many favorites to mention. Great start to the day again.

  28. Thanks Miffypops, I enjoyed the puzzle but have never heard tile as used in 20d. Enjoyed a reference I found saying it was not rhyming slang but “a fanciful analogy to roof/tiles and head/ hats”.

  29. Thanks to the setter and to Miffypops..only needed him to clarify the parsing, so a good start to the week for me!

  30. Bit late on parade today as always for a Monday. Worth the wait, though, and I thought 22 down would get my vote for clue of the month. Like others, I struggled to parse 26 across but otherwise this was a top offering from Rufus and worthy of a 2*/4* rating.

    Thanks all round.

  31. Brian could be pleased that I found this more difficult than he did. Over a week now since I was able to finish without help. Must be getting too old !!! Used lid to get elide in 20d & fell at the 19th & 21st.. 22d wrong didn’t help. Other errors too, won’t specify.

  32. A Rufus special, with some excellent puns. I struggled with the NW corner. I was going to add, “…for some reason”, but then that would be to ignore my overall lack of ability.
    Great fun. Thanks to all involved.

    1. You’ve expanded your alias so this comment went into moderation. Both aliases should work from now on.

  33. Great stuff – not too difficult but lots of fun: 2*/4*. Just the job to kick off the puzzler’s week. On the favourite clue front, I had little ticks in the margin against 25a, 7d and 8d, with the laurels going to 7d. Thanks to Rufus and Miffypops.

  34. What an enjoyable crossword this was – plenty of occasions to say ‘O that’s clever’, and not too many to be completely stumped. I’m glad others were puzzled by bits of 26a. Favourite clue was definitely 22d, but also liked 7d and 6, 12 & 9a. Thanks to all concerned.

  35. Thanks to Rufus and to Miffypops for the review and hints. A very nice start to the week. Quite tricky in places, was totally beaten by 13d, and 18d, yet another double definition. 12a made me laugh, as did 13a, but my favourite was 6d. Was 3*/3* for me.

  36. Back again after an unexpectedly hectic couple of days.
    I found this quite tricky but am so totally out of routine that that’s my excuse and I’m going to stick to it.
    I spent too long dithering about with several of these clues – too many to mention all of them – and failed completely with 13d – I was a long way up the garden path with a horse!
    I liked 10 and 16a and 7 and 20d. My favourite was 12a – made me laugh.
    With thanks to Rufus for the crossword and to MP for a couple of the ‘yes, but why’ bit of the answers.
    Totally knackered so night night all . . . :yawn:

  37. As usual Rufus gave the tone with 1a and finished “en apothéose” with 22d.
    Remarkable man.
    Never a dull moment.
    Thanks to Him and to MP for the top review.

  38. Just like to thank the compilers and BD for the website nice addition to my life keeping me sharp and staving off the inevitable old age decreptude cheers all

  39. Again, I was pleasantly surprised by this one – Monday’s are usually a little unchallenging for me personally but this was slightly more difficult and the cluing was excellent. 2.5*/3.5*

  40. 26a The inclusion of ‘perhaps none better’ means they’re not punters, leading to the rest of the clue suggesting they are.

  41. Most of these were OK. I finally got 13ac with the aid of almost all the checkers (12 letter straight cryptic right in the middle *sigh*), but in 19ac what does “a fuss” have to do with the solution, apart from giving the “first form” something to “make”? Even worse, in 26ac literally half the words in the clue (first 6 of 12) are irrelevant. “All they make goes on horses” is the only information given, then the clue is disguised to look like the first half is constructional or a second definition, but no, just empty words.

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