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DT 28355

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28355

Hints and tips by Miffypops and Kim Kardashian

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BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment *** [allocated by BD, not Miffypops]

As you may well be aware MPs creator Dick Bruna passed away on the 16th February. Your poorly schooled orphan boy is so overcome by grief that he needed help to produce these hints and tips. As is usual for the early part of the week 2Ks seem to be the norm so thank you Kim Kardashian for stepping up to help

As usual the hints and tips are here to help and the answers are hidden under the greyed out boxes

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a Petition that teacher would like to get from pupils (11)
APPLICATION: The petition here is a formal request. What a school teacher would like from his pupils is sustained effort and hard work. MP

The action of applying something to a surface. “I hate when women wear the wrong foundation color, it might be the worst thing on the planet when they wear their makeup too light.” KK

9a A centre of revolution (4)
AXLE: A cryptic definition of a rod or spindle (either fixed or rotating) passing through the centre of a wheel or group of wheels. MP

The wonderful man with the guitar in the centre of things in the group Guns N Roses and an E. KK

10a It enables travellers to go flat out (8,3)
SLEEPING CAR: A cryptic definition of a form of transport that allows people to travel whilst comatose. MP

A man and a woman who have never met before find themselves in the same sleeping carriage of a train.

After the initial embarrassment, they both manage to get to sleep; the woman on the top bunk, the man on the lower. In the middle of the night the woman leans over and says, “I’m sorry to bother you, but I’m awfully cold and I was wondering if you could possibly pass me another blanket.”

The man leans out and, with a glint in his eye, says, “I’ve got a better idea… let’s pretend we’re married.”

“Why not,” giggles the woman. “Good,” he replies. “Get your own blanket.” KK

11a Examination of oar to be repaired beside lake (4)
ORAL: Anagram (to be repaired) of OAR beside the abbreviation for L(ake) MP

I have no knowledge of this word KK

14a First-class students (7)
INFANTS: The children in the first class at school as known when I started my excellent primary education. Later known as the reception class and then year one. When the terrible events at the school in Dunblane were being made known on the radio the words ‘year one’ were used When I realised just what year one meant I broke down and cried.

As I said to The London Evening Standard “I was saying that earlier to my friends, ‘I wonder what My infant daughter North’s first job is gonna be.’ And they were like, ‘What? She’s gonna have a job?’ And I was like, ‘Are you kidding me? Of course she is.’ She will have to work for what she wants.” KK

16a Remainder dwell permanently outside university (7)
RESIDUE: A word meaning to live in or at a specified place is placed around the abbreviation for university KK

Thanks KK I have nothing to add. MP

17a Arms offensively thrust out (5)
EPEES: These arms are not attached to your shoulders. They are weapons. Sharp pointed duelling swords no less. Thrust out offensively in order to maim. MP

From the French for sword espee in old French. KK

18a She faded away from unrequited loveit comes back (4)
ECHO: That Narcissus geezer let them all down didn’t he. Whyfore? This poor girl just wanted a bit of loving but was rejected. To make matters worse Juno got all jealous and inflicted a punishment upon her, that of reply. She then lived among the caves and mountain cliffs. Her form faded with grief, till at last all her flesh shrank away. Her bones were changed into rocks and there was nothing left of her but her voice. With that she is still ready to reply to anyone who calls her, and keeps up her old habit of having the last word. Her name is what the second part of the clue refers to by saying it comes back. KK

Ditto. Narcissus could have had them all. He didn’t have a single one. Fell in love with himself. Weird. MP

19a Turn crazy and stupefy (4)
STUN: Take a word meaning crazy and reverse (turn) it to find a word meaning stupefy. MP

A double definition with one definition reversed as indicated by the word turn KK

20a Doctor and criminal die, having no water left (5)
DRIED: Begin with the usual abbreviation for Doctor and add an anagram (criminal) of DIE. MP

Check out my Beauty smooth styler blow dry cream KK


22a No more, apparently? Result is to perplex (7)
NONPLUS: a three letter negative prefix is followed by a word meaning more or in addition to. MP

I think the lovely Jean Luc would say no like this and then we would need a word that means furthermore or also. KK

23a Abraham may lead this Eastern city (7)
LINCOLN: I rarely comment at the weekend for fear of breaking BDs rules. I am even more fearful of getting on the wrong side of CrypticSue. I think I am safe to indirectly refer to an answer in the prize puzzles on a non prize puzzle day. So here goes. This Abraham mentioned at 20ac yesterday was the sixteenth president of the USA. His surname is a city in the east of England MP

Rule one. There are no rules

Rule two. If in doubt see rule one KK

24a Hardy female (4)
TESS: This girl from the D’urbevlles was conjured from the pen of Thomas Hardy. MP

My favorite novel by Thomas Hardy KK

28a Embroidery appears to irritate Dot (11)
NEEDLEPOINT: Take a word meaning to irritate and a word meaning a dot or full stop.

29a He floated a company, being interested in conservation (4)
NOAH: A cryptic definition of a biblical chap who built an ark which therefore floated and conserved the animals. MP

But not the unicorns KK

30a Transport charge? (8,3)
ENTRANCE FEE: Use a verb meaning to fill with wonder and add a payment made to a professional person

Kim Kardashian is commanding nearly US $1 million for appearances. According to a source, the reality star got paid $700,000 to take selfies with Instagram stars this weekend in the Hamptons


2d Extreme European measure (4)
POLE: A double definition. An extreme point on the planet or an old European measure being a quarter of a chain. MP

Surely this is a triple definition Miffypops. The European is from a country with Warsaw as its capital. The extreme and the measure are just as you say. KK

I stand corrected. MP

3d Willingly change file (4)
LIEF: An archaic word meaning happily or gladly is an anagram (change) of FILE. MP

I have never heard of this word. I am far too young. KK


4d Conditions that might affect mail etc (7)
CLIMATE: Anagram (that might affect) MAIL ETC MP

The anagram indicator here is doing doubly duty as wordplay. How clever KK

5d They have a strong pull in the port trade (4)
TUGS: A cryptic definition of a small, powerful boat used for towing larger boats and ships, especially in harbour. KK

6d They gave advice so wise and so clear when translated (7)
ORACLES: Anagram (when translated) of SO CLEAR. MP ( MP is not part of the anagram fodder)

I am one of these to a whole generation of girls. KK

7d Handing over offender — custom no longer in force? (11)
EXTRADITION: The answer when split 2,9 makes sense of the wordplay here. MP

No longer is the same as a former wife or boyfriend. Followed by a long standing custom. KK

8d We badly malign Mel, but with good intentions (4-7)
Revised version: We badly malign Len, but with good intentions (4-7)
WELL-MEANING: This is an anagram that does not work It parses as We from the clue followed by an anagram (Badly) MALIGN MEL. There are too many letter Ms MP

Perhaps it should be We from the clue followed by an anagram (Badly) MALIGN LEN. That would work KK – Good guess! BD

12d Breathing in irregularly being asleep in winter (11)
HIBERNATING: Anagram (irregularly) of BREATHING IN KK

13d Ghana’s fit for realignment with an Asian country (11)
AFGHANISTAN: Anagram (for re-alignment) of GHANAS FIT KK

15d Urges on capital football team (5)
SPURS: A double definition the second being the nickname of one of Londons football teams. MP

Oh yes Miffypops. I remember when Coventry City beat them to win the FA cup in 1987. They had won the cup seven times previously and before the game their fans began to chant “We’ve never lost at Wembley” to taunt the Coventry fans. The lovely Coventry City fans sang back “We’ve never lost at Wembley” It was their first ever visit. Keith Houchen’s diving header was a corker. Oh how we celebrated in Los Angeles. KK

Ouch! I was at Wembley that fateful day. BD


16d Brew of beer left to rise (5)
REBEL: Anagram (brew of) of BEER Followed by L(eft). MP

This is a lovely little clue with a neat surface and an unusual anagram indicator KK

20d Where one may spend time underground (7)
DUNGEON: one ‘does time’ in prison. This prison is below ground KK

21d Pick out scattered cinders (7)
DISCERN: Anagram (scattered) of CINDERS. KK

25d Reported fragrance of European flower (4)
ODER: A homophone clue with a neat misdirection. The word reported lets us know that we need a sound alike word for a word that means fragrance. We are then misdirected by the use of the word flower which in this case is not a flower with petals but a body of water that flows in Central Europe KK

26d Cheatedagreed? (4)
DONE: A double definition, the first meaning to have been conned. KK

27d Stake in giant enterprise (4)
ANTE: A lurker, hidden within the words in the clue.. Some bloggers highlight the word in different coloured lettering and some indicate which words mask the hidden word. I asked MP if I should do this and he said “Nah! Let them do some work” KK

Thank you KK for coming over when you heard I was down. You have really cheered me up. Take care and stay warm MP

Thank you MP for letting me help with the blog. I read it every day after I have finished the puzzle. KK

The Quick Crossword pun: wren+dish+shun=rendition

66 comments on “DT 28355

  1. */**** – Rufus at his most benign, R&W, with a good number of easily solvable anagrams, completed at a fast gallop. I almost had to use electronic assistance for 18a (my LOI) but, just in time, I had a brain wave (or a brain something else).

    Favourite has to be 18a.

    I hope that Rufus has set the scene for the next 10 days which will be ‘full’ of travel; thanks to him and MP.

    1. 8d – was just a ‘bung-in’ for me, I didn’t bother to count the Ms and the web site said I had got it right.

  2. I didn’t notice 8d at first … but spent ages trying to fathom it when I did lol!!! Fav today 14a, putting axis in at 9a at first didn’t help either!!!!!

  3. I found this a gentle beginning to the crosswording week, with Rufus repeatedly demonstrating why he is regarded as the master of the cryptic definition. His clues of that type sometimes make me groan a bit, but not today, with 24a, 29a, and 5d in particular causing big smiles. Favourite clue today was the clever triple definition 2d. Thanks Rufus and MP.

  4. Fluffy Rufusness to ease us into the week (hmm – seems to be something of an 18a).

    Have to admit I just assumed the letters in 8d added up.

    I liked 29a (once I wiped the sleep from my eyes and realised it wasn’t conversation he was interested in).

    Thanks to Rufus, and to MP and his craziest collaborator yet.

  5. Welcome to the blog Kim – I take it MP has explained to you what a cryptic crossword actually is? Anyway, I thought this one was a bit better than the normal Monday offering, with some pretty good clues and more enjoyment. 23a: good misdirection making some of us think of a city in China or India or somewhere over there. 25d: good homophone, plus a bit more misdirection. 2*/3* (I said it was better, but still only up to average!).

    1. But, as MP says in his hint, the gentleman in question appeared yesterday. I, for one, consider that his reference is indirect enough, but who am I to say (just trying to keep on the right side of today’s 2Ks).

  6. I agree with Senf. 1*/4* for an easy but fun puzzle.

    Unlike MP and KK I assumed the name in 8d was a typo and should have read Nel due the proximity of N and M on a Qwerty keyboard.

    Note to KK: the wonderful man with the guitar in Guns ‘n’ Roses is Slash, but I don’t think the answer to 9 can be Slashe as it’s quite hard to squeeze that in. The individual in question usually appears to have two mikes. One in his hand and one stuffed in his underpants.

    Many thanks to Rufus and to the MP/KK combo.

    1. RD. As an anagram solver (as we all are) did you realise that said AXL ROSE is an anagram?! (not by accident!).

  7. Possibly rather more GK than we’re used to from Rufus, but none of it obscure (thank goodness!.
    Sorry to say that I bunged in 8d without appreciating that the fodder was incorrect – maybe just as well on this occasion?

    Ticks went to 10&22a but the outright winner was 30a.

    Thanks to Rufus and to MP/KK for perhaps the most bizarre review we’ve ever had on the blog!

  8. I was really really enjoying the blog until I got to the 1987 Wembley video and all the sad memories came flooding back. I too was there that day.
    Oh the days when it was a real treat to get to Wembley, the new place isn’t fit for purpose imho and next season I’ve got to go there every fortnight at least.

    Oh and I found the puzzle much harder than normal for a Monday but I do struggle with Rufus more than any other setter :-)

    1. There are no sad memories of the 1987 Fa Cup final Werm. It was a great day. The football was exciting. Gary Mabbutt scored a goal. The sun shone and everybody was happy.

  9. great puzzle & amusing review by MP but i do question his sanity. mad as a box of frogs but got this old boy smiling. thanks for cheering me up on a dull & grey monday in middle england.

  10. Perhaps the problem with 8d and the number of anagrams put me off as I didn’t really get on with this puzzle.
    Thanks to setter & MP / KK for hints. Hopefully next week you don’t try & go one K better & consult the KKK.

      1. They wouldn’t have come up with the sleeping car joke, much appreciated by SWMBO.
        As a Coventry City fan you will have the answer to the old soccer quiz question of the 80’s “Name the Coventry City player with the same name as a German newspaper”.

        1. I am from Coventry LrOK. I have seen Coventry City play but not since about 1995. I couldn’t name a current player. I know some of the cup winning side. I don’t know the answer to your question but will ask Kim. She might know. I do know that we are allowed triangular corner flags but Leicester are not.

          1. He left Coventry in 1984 so Kim probably hadn’t heard of the light blues then.. The answer is more cringe-worthy than the sleeping car joke. It’s (5,4) if that helps.

  11. Enjoyed this one very much and did not notice the problem at 8d until I read the blog.

    Thanks to the setter and to Miffypops and KK .
    (Has she asked for an appearance fee? )

  12. Lovely gentle start to the week from dear old Rufus. Thanks to him and to MP and KK for a most entertaining and unusual blog. */****

  13. I was very slow to get started today after a rather hectic weekend. :yawn:
    I didn’t get a single answer until I was about half way down the across clues.
    There were lots of anagrams which was probably just as well or I might never have got going at all.
    9a and 7d took ages but I can’t see why now.
    I didn’t notice the slip with the 8d anagram until I read the hint.
    I liked 10a and 7d. My favourite was 28a.
    With thanks to Rufus and to the hinty duo – I agree with spindrift about questioning the sanity of at least one of them.
    Having read the comments on the Rookie Corner crossword I’m not holding out much hope – might go up the garden . . .

  14. Quite a few familiar clues/ideas and plenty of anagrams made this a little bland for me. Appreciated all the same.
    Thanks to Rufus, MP and KK… :scratch:

  15. Well, I never find Rufus to be very easy, about *** for difficulty for this solver, though the cryptic definitions didn’t feel as mind bending as I sometimes find them, it must be said. Full marks for enjoyment. :-)

  16. Something I don’t do very often, I started with 1a and finished with 30a. 14a was fave. 1/3* overall.
    Thanks to Rufus, and KK for the review.

  17. The funniest blog yet, it definitely tickled my sense of humour. I had always assumed that Dick Bruna had named his famous character after the legendary Long Itchington blogger he once met when stopping off there for a pint – however his Miffy was actually female, so perhaps he got confused?

    As well as a blogging contribution from Kim Kardashian, the other thing I didn’t expect to see today was eight anagrams in the space of twelve clues, some sort of record, surely? I hadn’t realised that there was an error in the anagram fodder for 8d until reading the blog, another apology due in the paper tomorrow presumably.

    Two clues stood out for me, 14a and 7d.

    Many thanks to Ms. Kardashian and Miffypops for a splendid review, and to Rufus – Happy Birthday in advance to him for Wednesday.

  18. The review was more entertaining than the puzzle which was benign at best although as always I’m grateful to Rufus for setting me something to exercise the little grey cells. Thanks to all.

  19. I always enjoy Rufus puzzles, and this was no exception. This is probably Rufus at his most benign.
    There was so much to like here, I can’t choose a fave. As 23a appeared yesterday, that went in without hesitation. Honourable mention to 14a, 28a – oh, I give up, too many.
    Thanks to Rufus, M’pops and KK.

  20. Nice one Rufus – thanks – 🙂 I needed a bit of parsing help with 14a and 17a (thanks for that MP and friend). Filled in 8d without cross-checking anagram viability (DT apology will doubtless be secreted in some dark corner of tomorrow’s paper). 23a Abe seems to be popular these days in various guises. Probably chestnutty but Fav for me was 30a.

    1. Yes, I’m sure there’ll be an apology. The Telegraph don’t get everything right, but they will acknowlege it when they make an error and apologise, which is to be commended.

  21. Haven’t read through the whole blog but anyone else think that “sleeping bag” could equally apply to 10 across?

    1. I see what you mean but it didn’t occur to me. I don’t think anyone would be actively travelling in a ‘sleeping bag’.

      1. You never know.
        In the Hitchhiker’s guide to the galaxy you need to travel with a wet bath towel.

  22. Gentle, but amusing (although not half so good as MP’s explanation of Greek mythology). Call it 1*/3.5*. I didn’t spot the error in 8d – my right hand had gone off in auto and filled it in by then. My favourite was 30a. VMTs to Rufus, MP and the improbably pneumatic KK.

  23. I put in sleeping bag for 10a too, and it seems to work anyway. 8d was not a problem as I am 5 hours behind the U.K. and was already corrected by the time I opened on my iPad. 17a was hold out as I no nothing about old French swords, and my education was again sadly lacking in 18a. Thought it was Emma, as that is the same when it comes back. Other than that, not too hard today.

  24. Come on KK the Hardy girl from the d’urbervilles is not in Far from the Madding Crowd which includes your quote by Gabriel Oak

    1. Oh dear. It could have been the deliberate mistake. KK does not refer to TOTDs as her favourite Hardy novel. Her favourite Hardy Novel is Far From The Madding Crowd(s ignoble strife) as illustrated. I expected RD to pick up on the American spelling of favorite but Kim is American through and through.

  25. Took me longer to read the review than to solve the crossword.
    Enjoyed the review more than the latter.
    But we have this love/hate relationship with Rufus. Take no notice.
    Glad to see that Kim doesn’t think it was me who nicked all her jewellery last time she came to France. If she calls me lovely, I must be off the hook.
    Thanks to Kim, MP and Rufus.

  26. 2*/4* seems about right for this fun-filled Rufus puzzle. 28a was my favourite although 18a gave it a good run for the line.

    Many thanks to Rufus, the 2K and her very able assistant.

  27. Mostly enjoyable with some crackers. Also some old timers and some we have seen very recently. Many of us are old enough to have been in Infants classes but more difficult to fathom for younger solvers. I don’t mind alot of anagrams at all, and I enjoyed the long clues in general. Too many four letter clues for my taste. 2d was clever with three meanings, but I did not get that and 3d until I had solved 1a. NW corner was my last in. Did not fall into the 10a car/bag error. Car much better – I immediately thought of a vehicle. On the other hand I thought of entrance test for 30a until I realised that had one too many letters. Thanks Rufus and Miffypops. Condolences on the death of your namesake’s creator. Not sure about KK’s input however.

    1. KKs input is irrelevant although she did well at times. It is the letter K that is important. We now have six of the little blighters although two of their names begin with the letter C.

      1. That reminds me of the empty plaice (sic) in my birthplace joke – along with Killer Shark and Kwik Save Breaded Haddock :)

          1. Do’h! – You’re too clever by half LBR and I thought you were a friend :cry: No problems mate – have a good week :good:

  28. Very much what you would expect on a Monday (nearly) Back Pager. Not a straightforward R&W as I dithered a bit in the NW corner over 1a and ‘deprecation’ – a senior moment :)

    No particular favourite stand out clue – but I did think that 23a was quite topical, although probably submitted before the giant killers win against Burnley.

    Thanks to my nearby neighbour for the puzzle and to the ‘bereaved’ poorly schooled etc..etc.. for his review combination with the recently ‘relieved of jewellery’ American celebrity(?)

  29. Well I though this was the hardest for a while, but that is because I struggle so much with Rufus double-definitions. I found this much harder than yesterday for example.
    I was 7 short before I had to resort to the hints.
    Thanks MP and Rufus

  30. From the back page of today’s paper

    Cryptic28,355: Apologies for the misfiring anagram in 8 Across which should have read: “We badly malign Len, but with good intentions (4-7)”

  31. Memories came back watching Coventry winning the cup, I backed them at 20/1
    they were 40/1 before they beat Man united, never flinched to spread the bet at Wembley.
    I have seen 14 across before but it’s a great cryptic clue

  32. Just catching up with events from yesterday (it is now Tuesday). Trust me to be away when Kim was in town. Reading the blog through I would say KK came out in front.
    Surreal stuff.

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