DT 28244 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

DT 28244

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28244

Hints and tips by Kath

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating — Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Hello everyone. There’s no doubt in my mind that this is a Ray T crossword. It has most of his trademarks although there are more anagrams than is usual for him, a bit less innuendo than there is sometimes and the Queen seems to be on holiday. I found it very much at the gentle end of his range of difficulty but I am, as always, more than happy for any or all of you to disagree with me.

In the hints the definitions are underlined and the actual answers are hidden under the bits that say ANSWER so only do that if you want to see them.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a            Cruel, cruel habit and endlessly revolting (12)
UNCHARITABLE — An anagram (revolting) of CRUEL HABIT with the first two letters (endlessly) of AN(d).


9a            Settled admitting father right to get divorced (9)
SEPARATED — Another word for settled or sitting contains (admitting) an affectionate name for your father and the abbreviation for R(ight).

10a         Spruce up grand space (5)
GROOM — The one letter abbreviation for G(rand) is followed by a space or an area.

11a         Controlled animal’s lair after purge (6)
RIDDEN — A verb to purge or clear out is followed by (after) a lair or hideout.

12a         Telling-off, catching chill in grass (8)
SCOLDING — This kind of grass isn’t the green stuff in your garden that’s forever needing cutting – it’s a verb meaning betray and it contains (catching) a word meaning chill or iciness.

13a         Comparatively confined in dock, accepting fine (6)
POKIER — A dock or quay contains (accepting) an informal way of saying something is fine or indicating agreement.

15a         It delays getting drunk with regularity (8)
STEADILY — An anagram (getting drunk) of IT DELAYS

18a         Intense scheming consuming the compiler’s genius! (8)
EINSTEIN — An anagram (scheming) of INTENSE which contains (consuming) how the compiler might refer to himself.


19a         Shining silver pound sweetheart’s pocketed (6)
AGLEAM — Begin with the chemical symbol for silver and follow that with a verb that means to pound or beat which contains the central letter or heart of swEet (sweetheart’s pocketed).

21a         Inside place, not a pharaoh’s empty tomb (8)
CENOTAPH — The first lurker, or hidden answer – it’s in the second, third, fourth and fifth words of the clue.


23a         Bird’s back with practically complete beast (6)
ANIMAL — A reversal (back) of one of the possible spellings of an Asiatic bird known for its talent of mimicking human speech is followed by the first two letters (practically) of a three letter word meaning complete or total.

26a         Detectives seen with company in nightclub (5)
DISCO — Some of our usual crossword detectives are followed by (seen with) our usual crossword abbreviation for company.


27a         Scared by blunder provided, held by United (9)
TERRIFIED — A verb to blunder or make a mistake and a conjunction meaning provided that or on condition that are contained in (held by) another word for United or joined.

28a         Sauciest hint changed, becoming zealous (12)
ENTHUSIASTIC — An anagram (changed) of SAUCIEST HINT.



1d            Take off and run past flashing (7)
UNSTRAP — An anagram (flashing) of RUN PAST

2d            Managed PC editor (5)
COPED — This PC is an informal word for a member of our police force and is followed by the usual abbreviation for an editor.

3d            Enter game after resolving contract (9)
AGREEMENT — An anagram (after resolving) of ENTER GAME.

4d            It’s one tiny amount initially (4)
IOTA — The first letters (initially) of the first four words of the clue.

5d            Sailor in charge, in time, quit (8)
ABDICATE — One of the common crosswordland sailors is followed by a word meaning a specified time which contains (in) the abbreviation for In Charge.

6d            Constitutional member, a Labour leader (5)
LEGAL — A member – not an MP this time but a limb – is followed by the A from the clue and the first letter (leader of) Labour.

7d            Willing to take motorway home (8)
DOMICILE — Another word for willing or obliging contains (to take) the motorway that goes from London to the north of the country.

8d            Scheming to trap fool with satisfaction (6)
SMUGLY — A word meaning scheming or crafty contains (to trap) a fool or a twit.

I love being right.

14d         Affection of family head ringing daughter (8)
KINDNESS — A short word meaning family or clan and a head or promontory contain (ringing) the abbreviation for D(aughter). I wonder if I was the only one to spend far too long trying to justify the wrong answer here – I couldn’t but it played havoc with 13a.

16d         Some peculiar gent in Asian republic (9)
ARGENTINA — Our second lurker – the answer is hidden in the second, third, fourth and fifth words in the clue.


17d         Forward found in girl’s bed (8)
DISPATCH — One of the common crosswordland girls, with her ‘S, is followed by a bed – the kind of bed you might find in the garden, before any smutty minds get to work here.

18d         Former capital of Portugal (6)
ESCUDO — This former capital was the unit of currency in Portugal before the introduction of the Euro.

20d         Musical portion’s over, captured by microphone (7)
MELODIC — A reversal (over) of a word for a portion or a share is inside (captured by) an abbreviation for a microphone.

22d         Gashed gripping hard point (5)
THORN — Another word for gashed or lacerated contains (gripping) the abbreviation for H(ard.


24d         The bulk keeps one clammy (5)
MOIST — The bulk or larger part of something contains (keeps) the letter that looks like the Roman numeral for one.

25d         Reportedly makes vases (4)
URNS – A homophone (reportedly) of a word that means makes or merits.

I liked 12 and 19a and 1 and 17d. My favourite, even though it was one of my dreaded ‘lurkers’, was 16d.


63 comments on “DT 28244

  1. 3*/4*. Nicely challenging and very enjoyable, in other words everything you would expect from a Ray T puzzle except that Her Majesty has been given the day off.

    My favourite is 1d, with 1a running it close.

    Many thanks to Ray T and to Kath.

    1. After yesterday’s work Her Majesty deserves a day off.

      His Excellency Mr Evan Garcia was received in audience by The Queen today and presented the Letters of Recall of his predecessor and his own Letters of Credence as Ambassador from the Republic of the Philippines to the Court of St James’s.
      Mrs Batoon-Garcia was also received by Her Majesty.
      His Excellency Mr Sulaiman Hamid Almazroui was received in audience by The Queen and presented the Letters of Recall of his predecessor and his own Letters of Credence as Ambassador from the United Arab Emirates to the Court of St James’s.
      Mrs Alia Bastish was also received by Her Majesty.
      Sir Simon McDonald (Permanent Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs) was present.
      The following members of Her Majesty’s Body Guard of the Honourable Corps of Gentlemen at Arms were received by The Queen: Major John Rodwell who delivered up his Stick of Office upon relinquishing his appointment as Standard Bearer and Lieutenant Colonel Peter Browne who received his Stick of Office upon his appointment as Standard Bearer of Her Majesty’s Body Guard of the Honourable Corps of Gentlemen at Arms.
      The Queen held a Council at 5.30 p.m.
      There were present: the Rt Hon David Lidington, MP (Lord President), the Rt Hon Karen Bradley, MP (Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport), the Rt Hon Alun Cairns, MP (Secretary of State for Wales), and the Rt Hon Jeremy Hunt, MP (Secretary of State for Health).
      The Rt Hon Ruth Davidson, MSP, the Rt Hon Arlene Foster, MLA, the Lord Glennie, the Rt Hon Benedict Gummer, MP, and the Rt Hon Edward Vaisey, MP, were sworn in as members of Her Majesty’s Most Honourable Privy Council.
      The Rt Hon David Gauke, MP, made affirmation as a member of Her Majesty’s Most Honourable Privy Council.
      Mr Richard Tilbrook was in attendance as Clerk of the Council.
      The Rt Hon David Lidington, MP, had an audience of Her Majesty before the Council.
      The Duke of Edinburgh, Patron, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, this afternoon held a Luncheon at Buckingham Palace.
      His Royal Highness, Member, the Blue Seal Club, this evening attended a Dinner at the Cavalry and Guards Club, 127 Piccadilly, London W1.
      The Baroness Goldie (Baroness in Waiting) was present at Heathrow Airport, London, this afternoon upon the Arrival of The President of the Republic of Fiji and Mrs Konrote and welcomed Their Excellencies on behalf of The Queen.

      1. Crikey. I hope I can manage all that in a day when I reach her age, although I am pleased to see that The Baroness Goldie gave her a bit of help during the afternoon.

        1. I had no idea that the Blue Peter dog had been ennobled! It makes David Cameron’s reluctance to honour Larry the Downing Street cat in his Resignation Honours List even more difficult to understand :-)

  2. Like Jay yesterday, RayT has today provided us with a superb crossword with excellent cluing. No mention of his favourite rock band, but his other hallmarks are there. Favourites for me are 21a and 16d. Thanks to all concerned.

  3. Is it me or is RayT getting gentler these days? Fair enough puzzle today, completed with no problems and on the easier side for me. I liked 18d particularly!

  4. Is this really a Ray T? No Queen, no weird clues and enjoyable?
    Certainly a rarity for me to complete (or even start!) a Ray T.
    For me **/***

  5. It’s another beautiful day here and this was a lovely crossword with which to start it. I agree that RayT is being kind to us – he’s been kind to Her Majesty too, allowing her a holiday.

    A couple of super lurkers. I liked all the innuendo (of course) and also admired 7d. My favourite is 28a (just because I’ve been known to tone down the odd hint or two between first and final drafts).

    Many thanks to RayT for the smiles and to Kath for a review full of the customary warmth and intelligence, providing extra bonus smiles free of charge.

  6. I agree with this puzzle being at the gentle end of the spectrum, but that did not detract from my enjoyment in solving it.

    Thanks to Kath and RayT */****

  7. Good fun. I liked 15a (getting drunk with regularity), 18a (the compiler’s genius), 7d (to take the motorway home)

    And I really liked the hidden at 16d and 21a

    Many thanks RayT and thank you Kath

  8. Had the wrong answer for 14d , presumably the one Kath couldn’t justify (an F word?). so ended up not getting 13a.
    Would never think of kindness as affection & BRB does not mention either in association with the other as far as I can see.
    Otherwise a tough but do-able solve for me.
    Thanks to setter & Kath for leaving Ted to himself & penning the review.

    1. L OK. I haven’t got my BRB dictionary with me, but the BRB thesaurus lists both affection and kindness as synonyms of each other. But is a synonym always a definition?

  9. Definitely Mr. T being kind to us but none the less enjoyable for that.
    The 15a anagram caused a bit of headscratching and I was slow to get 7&18d – the latter being unforgivable.
    Rather liked 24d but my top spot goes to 2d.

    Devotions to Mr. T as always and many thanks to Kath for her usual lovely style of review.

    We’re off out for lunch soon – oh dear, moderation* could be creeping in even earlier today………..

  10. I found this pretty tough had to resort to thesaurus and some electronic help, but I managed to struggle through.
    No real favourite clues but one foxed me for a bit and that was the lurker at 16d.
    Many thanks to Kath and RayT.

    1. Could have saved me having to Google it. Didn’t realise it was a long running joke that he would get it.

    2. One of my favourite songs of all time (when performed by The Byrds”) demonstrates the 2016 Nobel Literature Prize winner’s sublimely poetic way with words even if they are largely incomprehensible.

      “My Back Pages”

      Crimson flames tied through my ears
      Throwin’ high and mighty traps
      Countless fire and flaming roads
      Using ideas as my maps
      “We’ll meet on edges, soon,” said I
      Proud ‘neath heated brow.
      Ah, but I was so much older then,
      I’m younger than that now.

      Half-wracked prejudice leaped forth
      “Rip down all hate,” I screamed
      Lies that life is black and white
      Spoke from my skull. I dreamed
      Romantic flanks of musketeers
      Foundation deep, somehow.
      Ah, but I was so much older then,
      I’m younger than that now.

      In a soldier’s stance, I aimed my hand
      At the mongrel dogs who teach
      Fearing not I’d become my enemy
      In the instant that I preach
      My pathway led by confusion boats
      Mutiny from stern to bow.
      Ah, but I was so much older then,
      I’m younger than that now.

      Ah, but I was so much older then,
      I’m younger than that now

      My guard stood hard when abstract threats
      Too noble to neglect
      Deceived me into thinking
      I had something to protect
      Good and bad, I define these terms
      Quite clear, no doubt, somehow.
      Ah, but I was so much older then,
      I’m younger than that now

  11. 2.5*/2* for me with considerable electronic assistance required. No stand out favourites, but I did like 27a and 7d.

    Thanks to Ray T and Kath.

  12. Not one of my favourites. NW corner held out the longest. Didn’t really like 11a (take off/flashing?),11a (controlled?) or 18a (scheming?) unless I am missing innuendos. Thanks RayT and indeed Kath who pointed me in the right direction on a couple. **/****.

  13. About a **/***, have to admit that I failed to see the anagram in 1d and had to choose between unstrip and unstrap , went for unstrip as I thought that flashing describes what you are doing when you take off clothes and run ! never mind -thanks Kath.
    Liked the 21 lurker and the surface of 11a -liked this weeks crosswords so far.

  14. They all leapt out out at me today, a R&W. Strange.
    My vote goes to 27a, too.
    Thanks to all as ever.

  15. An early offering from me today as I’ve been up and at it for a while now the Aussies have changed their clocks. I liked this doable RayT puzzle. King of the hill was 20d. Thanks to Ray and the indomitable Kath for an entertaining review. 2*/3*

  16. Well, I managed about three quarters of this one without help.
    So I guess that I must be getting better , even though most folks here seem to think this was an easy Thursday problem.

    Thanks to the setter and to Kath for the invaluable hints.

  17. Enjoyable back pager which I’d rate as **/*** like Kath. Not sure why, but when there’s a Toughie, I always tackle that first; so maybe that helps solving these a little more quickly.

  18. 18 across my favourite in this reasonably benign RayT offering. I did wonder whether it was him compiling as so many of his trademark clues were missing. Even the stretched synonyms were thin on the ground. Lots to enjoy though, so 2.5*/3.5* from me with thanks to Ray and Kath for a splendid review.

  19. Probably more like a *** for difficulty for me, but I’ve been far from being an 18ac all week, so probably just a *. :-) Lots of nice friendly anagrams I struggled to solve, and an old currency I barely remembered. Wake me up in the spring.

  20. Thanks to Ray T and to Kath for the review and hints. I enjoyed this one very much, but found it a bit tricky. I was completely beaten by 7d. I also had fondness for 14d, of= on, f=family & ness=head, which was wrong. That stopped me getting 13a. Rest of it was pretty plain sailing. 2&18d made me laugh. Favourite was 23a. Got 18a straight away, but had no idea it was a partial anagram. Was 3*/3* for me.

  21. Enjoyable puzzle, on a par with yesterday’s – maybe slightly more difficult. For a while, I wasn’t sure if this was a Ray T or not. Thanks to all.

  22. The king of lurkery strikes again. 3 great hidden words of which I thought 21 was the best. There are always some in a RayT and it gives a good start if you can find them. My favourite clue was 1d as I am still chuckling. Also liked 2 15 16 19 21 27 and 28. Many thanks to RayT for the fun and the laughs.

      1. Sorry Kath – you are right. I had 4 16 and 21 but maybe 4 doesn’t qualify for lurkery.

  23. A tad on the gentle side for a Ray T but still the best of the week so far by a fair margin with excellent cluing, quite challenging and very enjoyable. This is 3 times on the trot that he’s used only one-word clues in the Quickie and only one-word answers in the Cryptic – saving considerable publishing/printing costs by significantly reducing the quantity of commas/hyphens and numerals in the enumeration! 2.5*/3.5*.

    * Comment contains joke *

    1. PS. This time Ray T has managed to spread both of the two lurkers over four words – pretty impressive, that is!

  24. Not too difficult this time from Mr. Terrell, in fact it would have been even more straightforward had I not gone down the same blind alley as Kath and Heno (and possibly others I suspect) in trying to justify “fondness” initially for 14d.

    My ticked clues were 13a (my LOI), 18a, 7d and 18d. My one criticism of the puzzle was the over-reliance of containment or insertion devices. I counted thirteen, which out of 30 clues is quite a lot I felt. At least there were no repeat indicators thankfully! Such was the imbalance, that in contrast I spotted only two deletion devices in the entire crossword unusually.

    Many thanks to RayT for an entertaining solve and to Kath, who if venturing out into the garden today is well wrapped up I hope.

    1. I rashly wrote in “fondness” too. I had “head” performing a weird dual role – (F)amily head = F and head = ness.

  25. The anagrams in 1a and 1d were a big help to the nw corner, but I ground to a halt after I put ‘fondness’ into 14d. I couldn’t get 12a at all, and resorted to the review. Thank you RayT and Kath.

  26. Good afternoon everybody.

    A joint effort today but thought this was much too straightforward to be one of Mr T’s. All over very soon.

    In other news I see His Bobness is now a Nobel prize winner so well done. Who knows, perhaps he’ll be able to afford some singing lessons now.


    1. Now they have broken the mound, no doubt next year the Prize Committee will award it to the bloke who writes the timetables for Arriva Buses.

      1. As a music lover, I completely agree with your second sentence. I suspect we will never agree with the first. My point is that are plenty of gongs around for popular musicians. So why the need for the Nobel committee to honour a singer/songwriter with such a prestigious and financially rewarding award?

  27. A bit late to this today. Liked it and, unlike some here, found it quite challenging. And never got 18d – had to come here to the hints – thanks Kath – and it probably deserves my prize for today as a result. A Doh moment.
    I liked the lurkers – and good to get long ones in whilst remaining sensible English. Loved 2d – but guessed from the outset that it wasn’t going to be the obvious PC. And then wasted time exploring Politically Correct…
    Also spent time on 7d, having found that “positive” fitted with all the across clues and thinking that could mean “willing”. Trying to fit “motorway home” into “positive” wasted many happy minutes!

  28. When we did our regular clue word count we discovered that RayT has excelled himself this week. The longest clues in the puzzle have only 7 words and there are only three of them, all as across clues. We also started off with an F word for 14d until it would not work 13a or the wordplay. Lots of fun and much enjoyed.
    Thanks RayT and Kath.

  29. Evening all. Setter here, with many thanks to Kath for the review and to all for your comments. Always appreciated.


    1. I was just about to be a smarty pants and try to do all this in French but my French has deserted me – I’d rather do it in English than make awful mistakes in French so I’ll just leave it alone and say thank you Ray T – for your crossword and for calling in – both are, as always, very much appreciated.

    1. Hysterical, thank you Merusa. This whole election charade would be funny if it weren’t so alarming.

  30. A relatively gentle reintroduction to crosswording after a week with visitors (most welcome ones!). 2*/3* seems about right to me, and 13a my favourite clue. Thanks to Ray T and Kath. Now – do I dare take a peek at the Toughie?

  31. Very enjoyable again today. A fair challenge, always satisfying to complete without plugging anything into the wall.

    1 across and 1 down standouts for me,as they were for Rabbit Dave.

    Concur with **, but followed with ****.

      1. Come on Hoofit ! Shall I tell you ? Oh alright. Why, it’s

        Hamish the Tambourine Man !

        Thankyou, thankyou, I’m here all the week……

  32. A rarity, a Ray-T I could do, he must be slipping!!!
    Thanks Kath for the super blog and to Ray-T.

Comments are closed.