DT 28229 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28229

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28229

Hints and tips by Miffypops

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ****

Good Morning from the heart of Downtown L I. The sun is shining brilliantly. We cannot see it but it is shining. It always shines. Behind the darkest clouds it still shines.

Rufus is fairly benign today although the south east corner took a little longer to solve than normal.

Below are some hints and tips which should either

  1. Give you a push towards an answer you have trouble solving
  2. Explain the workings of the clue so that you know why your answer is correct

Definitions are underlined. If none of the above helps please ask away. An explanation will quickly appear.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a    Gloomy study to cause depression (6)
SADDEN: Take an adjective meaning unhappy (gloomy) and add our usual crosswordland study

4a    Woman‘s resignation (8)
PATIENCE: Double definition. The first one being a girl’s name

9a    Assimilate sailor’s world? (6)
ABSORB: Our regular sailor followed by the S from ‘S and a description of what our world is. The sailor can be found in the usual suspects section and our world is spherical.

10a    Each vies desperately and is successful (8)
ACHIEVES: Anagram (desperately) of EACH VIES. I thought it was I before E except after C

12a    Animal with neck fur and round head (4)
BOAR: A long thin furry scarf is followed by the first letter (head) of the word R(ound)

13a    Ends Lagos riots (5)
GOALS: Anagram (riots) of LAGOS

  ARVE Error: need id and provider

14a    Beat in golf round (4)
FLOG: Reverse the word GOLF as indicated by the word round.

17a    Have no attraction — as unprofitable investments do? (4,8)
LACK INTEREST: Two definitions of the same thing here. The second suggesting that no capital is earned from money loaned out

20a    I catch pastor out in terrible circumstances (12)

23a    A race of trees (4)
OAKS: One of the classic horse races. Not the Derby, the St Ledger, the 1000 Guineas or the 2000 Guineas. That is the total sum of my knowledge of horse Racing. Naming the five classics.

24a    It may be in a bank or in circulation (5)
BLOOD: A double definition. What circulates in your veins might end up in a bank if you are a donor.

  ARVE Error: need id and provider

25a    Some backing from the choir trebles for a small group (4)
TRIO: A rekrul clue. The answer is hidden within the words of the clue indicated by the single word some. The word is reversed as indicated by the word backing. Happy hunting. If you can be bothered. The answer is obvious from the definition

28a    Tom rings, expresses disapproval (8)
CATCALLS: Split 3,5 we have what animal a tom is followed by a verb meaning rings or telephones somebody

29a    One infiltrates at front, to no avail (2,4)
IN VAIN: Split 2,3 a term meaning at the front has the letter that looks like the number one inserted (one infiltrated) The three letter word is defined as such: the foremost part of a group of people moving or preparing to move forwards, especially the foremost division of an advancing military force.

  ARVE Error: need id and provider

30a    Label in new seed bed (8)
DESCRIBE: Place a type of bed usually used for a baby inside an anagram (new) of SEED

31a    Race of one’s life? (6)
CAREER: Double definition the first meaning to move swiftly and in an uncontrolled way.


1d    Let’s beat crashes with this (4,4)
SEAT BELT: Anagram (crashes) of LETS BEAT

2d    Bulletin carelessly pasted to front of church (8)
DESPATCH: Add an anagram (carelessly) of PASTED to the first two (front) letters of the word CH(urch)

3d    Have a rewarding job (4)
EARN: Take a wage from one’s job

5d    A decked-up election car displaying rate increase (12)
ACCELERATION: The A from the clue followed by an anagram (decked up) of ELECTION CAR. This clue has a great surface and a killer anagram indicator

6d    Something in the garden that provides colour for the eye (4)
IRIS: A flower is also the coloured part of the eye. Mine are seductive brown. What colour are yours?

7d    Books with opposing points about love, in a way (6)
NOVELS: Place opposing points of the compass around an anagram (in a way) of LOVE

8d    Flag Officer? (6)
ENSIGN: Double definition. The first being a flag or standard, especially a military or naval one indicating nationality.

11d    Team for shooting gameWolves? (8,4)
FOOTBALL CLUB: Shooting here means kicking in order to score a goal. Wolves or Wolverhampton Wanderers are an example of those businesses that do so. My Son In Law supports Wolves. I am lumbered with the laughing stock Coventry City although I never watch them. I only watch Rugby Union matches.

  ARVE Error: need id and provider

15d    I’d turned up with vehicle for piece of furniture (5)
DIVAN: Reverse I’D from the clue and add a covered motor vehicle, typically without side windows, used for transporting goods or people.

16d    A Caledonian race meeting (5)
ASCOT: A from the clue followed by a native of Caledonia (Scotland) gives the name of a racecourse in Berkshire

18d    Need little time? (8)
SHORTAGE: Little as in not very high followed by a period of time

19d    Ship in which sherry may be served (8)
SCHOONER: And the Lord said “Let there be cryptic crossword puzzles” and lo there appeared cryptic crossword puzzles and yea verily this was the very first clue. A sailing ship with two or more masts is also the name of a sherry glass. We threw all of ours away and serve sherry in regular glasses. It is not about what the customer wants. It is all about me

21d    Compelled number to join military unit (6)
FORCED: An example of what a military unit is (think RAF) followed by a number. A Roman Numeral in fact. Which one? Well there is nothing to help us in the clue so take your pick from I, V, X, L, C, D or M.

22d    Footwear put on in a hurry? (6)
SKATES: The footwear you might wear to glide on ice is used in an expression meaning to hurry up.

  ARVE Error: need id and provider

26d    Look after pound as an animal refuge (4)
LAIR: Our regular abbreviation for one pound sterling is followed by a word meaning: an impression of a quality or manner given by someone or something. Although the answer was obvious the clue took some working out. He had an air of superiority about him is an example of how this word works

27d    American business contracted a Peruvian (4)
INCA: In the UK we use Company Ltd. In the USA they use Company Inc. Add the a from the clue to find your Peruvian chappie.

Little Snowdrop

The world may never notice
If a Snowdrop doesn’t bloom,
Or even pause to wonder
If the petals fall too soon.
But every life that ever forms,
Or ever comes to be,
Touches the world in some small way
For all eternity.
The little one we long for
Was swiftly here and gone.
But the love that was then planted
Is a light that still shines on.
And though our arms are empty,
Our hearts know what to do.
Every beating of our hearts
Says that we love you.

~Author unknown

The Quick Crossword pun: epoch+ellipse=apocalypse

69 comments on “DT 28229

  1. I had trouble with the SW corner. In my opinion, very dubious synonyms for 30a and 26d, I thought. Then I had to look up what 23a had to do with race. Does anyone have the name of 4a these days?

    Anyway, not too difficult otherwise and enjoyable. 2*/3* I would say.

    Thanks to all for puzzle and hints.

  2. I liked 1d most

    I wanted 5d to be campaign-bus

    In 20d I made the mistake of not including “in” in the definition, and bunged in the wrong ending (ES instead of IC – note to self – look at the letters in the anagram)

    1d gloomy in the clue is close to the answer and 30a is a bit yoda like

    I didn’t know the horse classic (23a) so many thanks MP for the enlightenment and the Dylan

    And thank you Rufus

  3. I would say that Rufus is very benign today, rather than the fairly benign suggested by MP in his opening comments. So much so that this one was over almost before I had begun with oldies but goodies and anagrams in abundance (a combined 9 by my reckoning).

    I wonder if Rufus has set the tone for the week or are we in for a few stinkers?

    Favourite 17a and */*** for me.

    Thanks to Rufus and MP.

  4. No great problem with today’s offering. I liked 1D and 24A – a couple of decent smilers. My rating is 1.5* / 4* Hints were not required today but my thanks to Miffypops for his entertaining blog.

  5. Yup, SW was my headache too, but only since I didn’t know 23a: when I guessed at an answer the remaining ones fell straight into place.

    20a could describe my avatar, which I was just about to change but will leave in place for a bit longer. With 28a too, it’s nice to see two kitties in the grid! 1d is clever, and I love the surface of 12a: if I had a any skill at all in that department, I’d provide my own artist’s impression. But I don’t, so you are spared.

    Thanks to Rufus and Miffypops.

  6. You see, this is what happens if I try to be clever and do anagrams “by sight” and not checking properly – I had ‘es’ at the end of 20a instead of ‘ic’.
    Couldn’t do the SE corner anyway, but fruitlessly searching for a ship/sherry with S as the second letter wasted time I should be spending on other stuff!
    And why wolves? Redundant?
    Thanks to MP.

    1. Because it’s a football club, Wolverhampton Wanderers, used to be a great club in the days of The Doog!

      1. Wolves just featured on Only Connect too. Always associate them with Bert Williams (best goalkeeper of his day), Billy Wright & of course Stan Cullis.

      2. Oh yes, I’m very familiar with Wolves football club. I just thought it was odd to stick it in the clue as an extra bit of help, as it were. It just sat there “helping” without being connected to the rest of the clue.

  7. A (fairly) gentle start to the week. Like MP SE corner last in for me
    Not so sure any day has any relation to any other tomorrow is just another day.
    MP: would be good for profits if you offered your sherry in Australian schooners (or even better Canadian). Price adjusted for volume of course.
    Thanks to setter & MP for hints and comments.

  8. Much easier than the usual Rufus, I thought. No problems apart from the 5 black squares in Miffypop’s hints. Is this the fault of my laptop? Thanks to setter and MP.

  9. I also had problems with 4a. I don’t think that that particular name has come into fashion again but I have 2 great nieces called Edith and Martha which strangely were the names of 2 of my great aunts, also my paternal Grandmother who died before I was born was ‘Fanny’ French, I don’t think that will return!

  10. A bit of a doddle, but amusing (especially the description of Wolves as an 11d, which has occasionally been called into question). Thanks to Rufus and Miffypops.

    1. As a football team or as “game” (or both)? Tigers might have been better as it covers both Association F. (Hull) & Rugby Union F. (Leicester) and sadly are / were game.

  11. Straightforward but enjoyable except for 26d which although obvious I thought very weak indeed.
    Best clue by far was 11d.
    Thx to all

  12. Either Rufus is being kind to us today, or I’m reaping the benefit of solving while I’m still half awake. :-) That said, I was convinced there was a mistake in 30ac until I read the blog and realised I should have been looking for more than a complete anagram. Should have known better… Not particularly fond of 1ac, but the rest was as good as ever.

  13. Fairly zipped along with this – just a slight hold up to justify the American business in 27d and being slow with the girl’s name. I invariably leave proper names until all the checkers are in place and – once those were in – I immediately saw ‘Marianne’. Not much use under the circumstances!
    I liked 12&17a and 16d raised a smile despite probably being an old chestnut.

    Thanks to Rufus and to MP for the clip of Jayne and Chris and the delightful poem. Does your comment at 10a come under the heading of today’s deliberate mistake or am I missing something?

    1. I also thought of Marianne – but clearly it didn’t fit the clue – so more head-scratching was required.

    2. I never thought of Marianne which is surprising as it is my middle name. Lucky me saddled with two names plus a dodgy surname which all need spelling. Usual Monday treat from Rufus, thanks to him and Miffypops. No major hold-ups, started from bottom worked my way up down clues then on to across. Quite liked 20a mainly because I like the sound of the word but it also describes my life at times.

    3. Marianne was my first thought too. It took a while to come up with the right answer.

      I think it is “I before E except when in alphabetical order.”

  14. I too suffered the SW corner syndrome, reluctant to put ‘club’ in for 11d as I didn’t think this was very cryptic-maybe just too obvious , but all suddenly fell into place and bingo! Remember Wolves in the 1950’s playing European teams like Moscow Dynamo and Spartak which was unheard of at the time -and a forward called Jonny Hancox ! bet Brian remembers .Anyway fine start to the week and a **/*** for me .Thanks to Miffypops for the Inca explanation.

  15. Nobody has commented yet about Miffypops unusual choice of videos. Not sure what the connection is but enjoyed the Bob Dylan you tubes. Keep it up.

  16. Enjoyable fare from Rufus. Fairly straightforward but not what I would call easy. SW corner posed no difficulties but it took me an inordinate amount of time to solve 12a, I don’t know why! Favourite was 11d even after the pain of watching the hammers excruciating so called performance that contained very little shooting and x rated defending.

  17. I’m another who took as long on the SW corner as the rest of the puzzle combined, 22d in particular took far longer to decipher than it should have done, a true “d’oh” moment when the penny finally dropped. For that reason, it earns my favourite vote. 25% of the clues involved full or partial anagrams which is a tad on the high side.

    Being an alumnus of Wolverhampton Grammar School, and living not that far away in Ironbridge, I suspect that Mr. Squires has a certain fondness for the Wolves, hence their mention in 11d.

    Many thanks to Rufus and to Miffypops.

    1. Mr Squires was born near Wolverhampton and Elgar was a Wolves supporter. [Not that Elgar … the other one … Edward Elgar]

  18. No problems today, liked 1d & 22d.

    Not entirely convinced that the second word of 17a is synonymous with one’s return/profit, but then I’m not an investor. To have ‘an interest’ in a venture isn’t the same as a rate of return; or is it?? I’m sure some clever bunny will beat me about the head with a BRB quote..!

    All good, thanks to all as ever.

  19. It was nice to see the crossword today back on the back page where it belongs. :good:

    2*/4* for another in a long line of fun Monday puzzles. I’m also in the “SW corner was the toughest” camp.

    Many thanks to Rufus and to MP.

  20. Apart from going off at a complete tangent in the NE quadrant which caused a certain degree of uncertainty, this was a gentle intro to the week’s festivities.
    23a was my favourite; there I was going though all the three lettered trees completely forgetting about the mighty oak… D’oh!
    2/3* overall.
    Thanks to Rufus and to MP for his review.

  21. Yes, Rufus in a benign mood today and I wasn’t held up by too much.
    My last in was 4a, dunno why, it just was.
    My fave was the race of trees, but the beat in golf was close second, and 28a deserves a mention for obvious reasons.
    Thanks to Rufus and to M’pops for his entertainment.

  22. Good afternoon everybody.

    A joint effort today and all over fairly shortly. Left to my own devices I reckon one or two (4a for example) would have have tripped me up so I’ll say three star difficulty.


  23. A pleasant start to the week, and only needed Miffpops help with 18d. I had put in a different lurker in 25a, echo, so that threw me off. Rufus was definitely kind today.

  24. Thanks to Rufus and to Miffypops for the review and hints. A nice start to the week. Needed the hints for 12a, could only think of bear, had vaguely heard of boa. Also for 4a, I just can’t do double definitions. Last in was 7d. Favourite was 24a. Was 3*/3* for me.

  25. I didn’t need the hints but I am glad I dropped by for the Bob Dylan videos.
    Thanks to Rufus and Miffypops.
    4a reminded me of St Sharon.

  26. Nice comfortable start to the week. I remember Roy and Hayley on Corrie adopted a girl whom Hayley wished to call 4 across. I didn’t really understand 29 across, though I had it correct.

    MP, sorry to hear of your Cov affiliation. Could be worse, you could have been suffering avec moi yesterday, in my £1100 seat at the Olympic Stadium !


    1. Like me, the VAN bit is ‘front’, presumably a shortening of ‘vanguard’??
      New to me…

      1. Yes; ‘vanguard’ (from Van Garde) is the front section of an army or ‘front guard’ I seem to remember.
        English is, after all, French pronounced unimaginatively as my old French teacher would say.
        JLC may correct me. M’aider!

  27. Remember doing the crossword over breakfast.
    Pretty much on auto pilot mode but slowed down in the SW corner.
    For once the four letter words didn’t cause any problems.
    Thanks to Rufus and to MP for the review.
    19d made me laugh.

  28. Enjoyable, and for a change, easier Rufus offering.
    Unlike many, I had no problem in the SW corner, I knew the horse race, having watched Billy Newnes on Time Charter and Willie Carson on Sun Princess win me money many years ago.
    For various reasons, I did need to double-check the parsing of some of the answers with MP’s excellent hints.
    So thanks to MP and Rufus for an enjoyable romp…

  29. Oh my. I must be improving enormously! Either that or this was particularly easy.
    Very satisfying when ir
    t all slips in nicely though.

  30. Benign and enjoyable although we felt there were, perhaps, too many old chestnuts – 6d, 19d, 13a, 14a and 31a to name but a few.


    Thanks MP and Rufus.

  31. This really was an exceptionally easy ride so too early for access to BD upon completion but now back after a day of work for Marie Curie and I say thank you to Rufus and to MP for starting my day on an encouraging note. */***.

  32. Nice and straightforward offering from Rufus 😊 **/*** Thanks to him and to MP for a nice and musical blog 🎼 Liked 4a and 9a 😁

  33. For the second week running there has been too much talk of oikball on Mondays blog. I declare next weeks Monday blog to be an oikball free zone

    1. There are many of us who follow both oikball and poshball, my son. For example, I am a fan of West Ham and also of Bath Rugby !

  34. Really enjoyable. Thank you Rufus for something more attainable, and to Miffypops for your usual fun blog and much needed hints for the few I struggled with. Plus ‘The Snowdrop’, which came at just the right time to send to a friend in need – perfect, thank you.

      1. I wasn’t familiar with the poem MP, but whatever the hard times are, may some sun shine through the dark clouds soon.

  35. Very good. No problems. Jolly. Finished in one pass, but that pass took longer than many. Thanks to Rufus and MP. As one who has too been touched by the hand of Bob, thanks for the vids. 2*/3*

  36. Thanks Rufus and MP. No problem with SW for me. I was in the Marianne camp and needed to look up synonyms to get that one and also for my last two 31a and 18d. Loved the poem and will keep. Could not connect it to a clue or hint so my sympathies wherever needed.

  37. I did this straightforward Rufus offering this morning. No more than 1.5* time and a solid 3* for difficulty. Thanks all round.

    As a former oinkball fanatic of many years, I then started to follow poshball more closely. Supporting Wasps, watching other games on tv and generally reading match reports, I soon realised the two games are poles apart, not just in format, but in discipline and crowd behaviour. I have only watched one game of oinkball in three years, and that was England v Iceland. Not a great advertisement. Close-ups of the crowd during derby matches in the round ball format show genuine hatred and vitriol. The beautiful game? I think not.

  38. Re 10a: It is I before E except after C when the sound is ‘ee’ and the EI combination comes immediately after the C 🙃

    1. Welcome to the blog Fi

      I think it is a guideline rather than a rule – leisure, for example, doesn’t fit you rule unless you pronounce it as leesure.

  39. Sorry this is so late. Started the crossword in the middle of last night as I was watching the big American debate live. Thank you setter and MP. Only problem was 17a as I put lost instead of lack.

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