DT 28342 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

DT 28342

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28342

A full review by crypticsue

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

This puzzle was published on Saturday 4th February

BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment ***

A pangram this week, with double unches and cryptic definitions galore – this was a slightly different Saturday puzzle to the ‘norm’ but it still didn’t take long to solve, and the clues were very ‘blogger friendly’ when it came to typing out the explanations, even allowing for a couple of quibbles, one considered quite major by the commenters on the day!


1a           Swampy tract spoils hot country (9)
MARHSLAND – MARS (spoils) H (hot) LAND (country)

6a           Wild tribe current in Italy (5)
TIBER – An anagram (wild) of TRIBE

9a           Part of book allowed to be circular (7)
LEAFLET – LEAF (part of book) LET (allowed)

10a         Formerly thoughtful, dear? (9)
EXPENSIVE – EX (formerly) PENSIVE (thoughtful)

11a         Question about king following English attendant (7)
EQUERRY – QUERY (question) goes ‘about’ R (king), the result ‘following’ E (English)

12a         Most within range are in the midst of retreat (7)
NEAREST – ARE (from the clue) inserted into the ‘midst’ of NEST (retreat)

13a         Plant a screw loose (4-2-3-6)
BATS-IN-THE-BELFRY – I didn’t know the plant (apparently it is a type of Campanula) but I did know the informal expression meaning to be crazy or slightly mad (in the same way that having a screw loose does)

17a         It travels round place in sink with an internal twist (7)
SPUTNIK – PUT (place) goes in SINK once you have twisted round the two ‘internal’ letters to get SNIK – It hasn’t been travelling round since January 1958 so the clue should probably have said ‘travelled’!

19a         Puzzle as the first person’s tyres burst (7)
MYSTERY – MY (the first person’s) and an anagram (burst) of TYRES

22a         Staff that can work wonders if handled with charm (5,4)
MAGIC WAND – A nice all-in-one cryptic definition

23a         Disorderly suitor sadly admits nothing (7)
RIOTOUS – An anagram (sadly) of SUITOR ‘admits’ O (nothing)

24a         Stretched most of nether garments (5)
TIGHT – Almost all of TIGHTs (nether garments)

25a         It finishes just over 24 hours from tomorrow (9)
YESTERDAY – A cryptic definition that makes you think to make sure it is correct before you write in the solution


1d           Married woman’s spite (6)
MALICE – M (married) ALICE (woman)

2d           Convert again seen in study a short time ago (8)
READJUST – READ (study) JUST (a short time ago)

3d           Rope one pulls up? (6)
  HALTER – A type of rope could also be a description of someone who pulls up or stops

4d           Pretentious, receiving the Queen in this vein? (6)
ARTERY – ARTY (pretentious) ‘receiving’ ER (the cipher of our current Queen).  I think the question mark after the ‘vein’ is significant – if it were a school exam paper, this would probably have the word ‘discuss’ after it, as the clue certainly provoked a lot of discussion, which may or may not have been what our setter intended.   A vein and an artery are both blood vessels and that’s all I’m going to say here as I think the matter was fully discussed on the day.   I’ve given up any hope of  solvers commenting on the Prize Puzzle reviews, but it would be nice if this week’s Mysteron popped in  to let us know their thoughts on veins v  arteries and even blood vessels in general.

5d           What chemists do and have done (8)
DISPENSE – To make up medicine to be do away with (have done)

6d           After funny turn, energy to support pet cut short (8)
TRUNCATE – After an anagram (funny) of TURN, E (energy) supports, or goes after in a down clue, CAT (pet)

7d           Busy person must accommodate Elizabeth in the country (6)
BELIZE – BEE (busy person) accommodates LIZ

8d           Small amount of money in trust not long ago (8)
RECENTLY – CENT (small amount of money) in RELY (trust)

13a         Humiliation, initially missing a cellar (8)
BASEMENT – Remove the ‘initial’ A from ABASEMENT (humiliation)

14d         One is this through no fault of one’s own (8)
INNOCENT – Another &Lit/cryptic definition

15d         Indian perhaps on holiday after money coming in? (8)
TAKEAWAY – AWAY (on holiday) goes after TAKE (money coming in)

16d         Release bear that should be given to property owner (8)
FREEHOLD – FREE (release) HOLD (bear)

18d         Do not start removing impurities, that’s encouraging (6)
URGING – Remove the ‘start’ of PURGING (removing impurities)

19a         Frenzied artists in port (6)
MADRAS – So who else thought ‘I’d forgotten that Madras is a port?’  MAD (frenzied) RAS (artists 

20a         Mark one of the crew (6)
STROKE –  A mark or a member of a rowing crew.

21a         Old agreed on dirty place being in a ferment (6)
YEASTY – YEA (old word meaning ‘yes’ agreed) on STY (dirty place)



5 comments on “DT 28342

  1. CS, don’t faint, a solver posting a comment. Having consulted the BRB (again), part of the entry for vein is ‘(loosely) any blood vessel.’ So, perhaps the setter’s use of the question mark is his/her way of indicating the ‘loose’ definition is being used to get to the answer.

  2. 4d. Well done, CS, for giving the setter the benefit of the doubt. I agree for the following reasons:

    1. The ? was there for the reason you have given and I gave before.
    2. The BRB defines vein as Senf describes above.
    3. The primary entry in Collins Online Thesaurus for artery is “vein”.
    4. Last and probably least, the pulmonary artery is a vessel (heart>lungs) that’s called an artery but has the function of a vein (to convey deoxygenated blood) and the pulmonary veins are vessels (lungs>heart) called veins but have the function of arteries (to transport oxygenated blood).

    If a setter presented such information to an editor or sub-editor I reckon the clue would pretty quickly get the green light.

  3. It fascinates me how some things pass without comment and something like artery provoked an enormous amount. I always enjoy your comments although I do not always say anything. If you could tweak whoever should be doing it to add the photos from the birthday bash I would be eternally grateful

  4. Hello, CS. I remember doing the puzzle though not if I commented at the time. Maybe not since I was (and still am) fighting with the MPP. I’m guilty of overlooking your Saturday reviews and I did resolve to do better though lapsed again. Veins and arteries… as long as mine are functioning as they should, I’m not too bothered. Thanks for taking time out of your weekend to blog. You’re much more appreciated than the lack of comments indicates! Off to check the UK weather now and see what chaos the snow is causing over there. Stay warm!

  5. Hey, CS, I’ve commented more than once, but since I run about a fortnight behind you probably don’t see….
    My quickest ever solve, I think….vein/artery, may be wrong but hey, it’s a crossword, we all got it easily enough!

Comments are closed.