DT 28520 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28520

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28520

Hints and tips by Kath

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BD Rating — Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Hello everyone. This isn’t a Ray T Thursday so there’s no need for any panic. I don’t know who set today’s crossword but I didn’t find it very difficult. As usual I’m more than happy for anyone or everyone to disagree – I know I’ve said before that I find it next to impossible to judge difficulty or enjoyment when I know I’m doing the hints.

In the hints below the definitions are underlined and the answers are hidden under ANSWER so only do that if you want to see one.

Please leave a comment telling us how you got on today.


1a            Name found in Ruth and Leviticus (6)
HANDLE — Our first clue – our first lurker or hidden answer. It’s indicated by ‘found in’ and he’s in the last three words of the clue.

5a            One sells using only detailed slogan (8)
MERCHANT — Begin with a synonym for only or simply, remove its last letter (detailed) and follow it with a slogan or motto.

9a            Resting point for bowlers? (8)
HATSTAND — Nothing at all to do with ‘crickety stuff’ – these bowlers are titfers and their resting point is where they might be put when taken off.

10a         Disturbance in break for top diplomats? (6)
UNREST — If you split your answer 2,4 it could be coffee time or a break for people working in the United Nations.

11a         Record fifty with intent to tour capital on way back (8)
MEMORIAL — The Roman numeral for fifty and another word for intent or objective which contains a European capital city – then the whole lot needs to be reversed (on the way back).

12a         Businessman to publicise work after crash? (6)
REPAIR — This businessman is a travelling salesman and he’s followed by a synonym for publicise or make known.

13a         African labourer endlessly wearing woolly again (8)
GHANAIAN — Most of (endlessly) a word for a labourer or worker goes inside (wearing) an anagram (woolly) of AGAIN. My spelling was a bit of an issue with this.

15a         Manage range needing no introduction (4)
COPE — Range or extent without its first letter (needing no introduction).

17a         In speech, be inclined to offer remedy (4)
HEAL — A homophone (in speech) of a word that means be inclined or list as a boat might do.

19a         Influence continually found in a lot of drink (8)
LEVERAGE — Continually or constantly is contained in (found in) a kind of light beer (drink) without its last letter ( a lot of).

20a         Tough is flipping over novel — why read out loud? (6)
SINEWY — A reversal (flipping) of the second word in the clue, another word for novel or original and, finally, the letter that sounds like (read out loud) ‘why’.

21a         Page with line in the map scribbled in small book (8)
PAMPHLET — Start off with the abbreviation for P(age) and follow that with an angram (scribbled) of THE MAP which contains (in) the abbreviation for L(ine).

22a         German gentleman breaking limits for solitary tipple (6)
SHERRY — The word for ‘Mr’ in German (German gentleman) goes inside (breaking) the first and last letters (limits for) SolitarY. For no very good reason this was my last answer.

23a         Judge to withdraw with Liberal replacing Conservative (8)
EVALUATE — A verb to withdraw or move out of with its ‘C’ swapped for an ‘L’ (Liberal replacing Conservative). This answer was easier once I’d corrected my wrong second word for 14d.

24a         Fool should follow parking information — it’s needed to get in (8)
PASSWORD — A fool or nit follows the abbreviation for P(arking) and then another way of saying information or communication.

25a         Foreign songs making number one on the radio (6)
LIEDER — A homophone (on the radio) of a word that means ‘number one’ or head honcho.



2d            Excessive period to get up after a minute liqueur (8)
AMARETTO — The A from the clue, a one letter abbreviation for M(inute), and then a reversal (to get up) of a period of time or an age and an informal expression that means excessive or far too much. Another one that I couldn’t spell.

3d            Force out duke on island over cabin (8)
DISLODGE — The one letter abbreviation for D(uke), the two letter abbreviation for island and a cabin or chalet.

4d            Get rid of rubbish I created around area (9)
ERADICATE — An anagram (rubbish) of I CREATED which contains (around) the abbreviation for A(rea).

5d            Result of inflation in the forties? (6-3,6)
MIDDLE-AGE SPREAD — This is what happens to some people as they get older.

6d            Prisoner on mend after modifying sentence (7)
CONDEMN — One of crosswordland’s favourite prisoners is followed by an anagram (after modifying) of MEND.

7d            A river flowing round settled Australian city (8)
ADELAIDE — The A from the clue and a Welsh or Scottish river contains (flowing round) a synonym for settled or placed.

8d            Converted to ritual in class (8)
TUTORIAL — An anagram (converted) of TO RITUAL

14d         Notification stirring one in retirement? (5,4)
ALARM CALL — This ‘one in retirement’ hasn’t stopped working, he’s asleep.

15d         Draws together society in photograph (6,2)
CLOSES UP — A photograph taken from not very far away contains (in) the abbreviation for S(ociety).

16d         Simple old man wearing fewer clothes? (8)
PAINLESS — A short affectionate word for your Dad and then, split 4, 2, another way of saying he’s not wearing as much as he was before. Oh dear – one of those it’s quite tricky to do a decent hint for.

17d         Where mothers brood over the young in their clutches (3,5)
HEN HOUSE — These mothers have feathers and beaks and lay eggs.

18d         Base teen wrecked, one not seen? (8)
ABSENTEE — An anagram (wrecked) of BASE TEEN.

19d         Sad book with argument that’s not intellectual (7)
LOWBROW — A synonym for sad or down, the one letter abbreviation for B(ook) and then an argument or squabble.

I liked 22a and 5d. My favourite was 16d.

The Quickie pun:- BACK + LARVA = BAKLAVA (or BACLAVA)

46 comments on “DT 28520

  1. This was one of those puzzles that seemed harder than it really was at the outset, but soon fell into place at a rate of knots once the long clues were sorted. I liked 5d, but 13a was my COTD. 2*/3.5* overall.

    Many thanks to the Thursday setter and to Kath.

  2. Yes, I too found this a little slow to start, and once I was rolling I found that most of my checkers were vowels, which I dislike intensely! Finished in **/*** time, and COTD was 11a for me. Poignant, as I spent yesterday at a funeral.

    Many thanks to the setter and Kath.

  3. 1.5*/3*. Nice but gentle puzzle with nothing to frighten the horses. 16d was my last one in and favourite.

    Many thanks to Mr Ron and to Kath.

  4. Lots of fun and little aggro. Needed help parsing 5a because I missed “detailed”. Podium places in no particular order go to 20a, 5d and 14d. Thank you Mysteron and Kath.

  5. I seem to have found this more difficult than Kath but quite enjoyable.

    I took a long time to get the right bowlers in 9a.

    Just an observation but Kath seems to imply that “Lurkers” are always masculine.

    1. A very interesting observation about lurkers tending to be male – not quite sure what to make of that!

    2. I hadn’t really thought about it but if it makes any difference at all my plants are always blokes as well – my friends comment on it too. Maybe I’ll have to stop.

      1. But do you talk to them? I warn my plants that if they don’t buck up, they will be out of here… I guess I am related (very distantly) to Prince Charles 😉

        1. Yes – of course I talk to them, very nicely too – well, at least until they start to look not so good and then they get dire warnings of what might happen if they don’t cheer up at bit . . .

  6. I found this enjoyable and of a normal difficulty for a Thursday (i.e. above the average for a back page puzzle. Maybe I’m just Roger Irrelevant (completely 9a).

    Wasn’t hugely keen on 17d but really liked 23a and 16d.

    Thanks to the setter and Kath.

  7. Very much a joint effort today – thus difficult to give a star rating – maybe **/***. Progress wasn’t helped much by one of us putting ‘clock’ as second word forf 14d, the other, ‘coupe’ with 17d! Definitely a result of misdirection, although not in the usual sense of the term. Our favourite was 5d – on account of the amusement factor. Nicely constructed crossword, well done setter!

  8. Like stanXYZ, I thought this was somewhat more difficult than the average Thursday with more than a little head scratching required, Not sure of the overall time as it included ‘nosebag’ time so I will say it was completed at a canter – 2.5*/3*.

    Favourite has to be 5d for being a 15 letter non-anagram.

    Thanks to the setter and Kath.

  9. An enjoyable solve with a few thoughtful moments involved. I liked 9a which although an old chestnut, still managed to hold me up. Favourite though was 22 a. 2/4* overall.
    Thanks to Mr Ron and to Kath for her review.

  10. Many thanks for the hints Kath, way to hard for me today, mainly because I could not get 5d. The use of ‘detailed’ in 5a also new to me and one to remember.
    Thursday’s alternative to Ray-T always gives me problems (as well as Ray-T!!).
    Thanks also to the setter.

  11. I found some of the parsing quite tricky today but overall can’t quibble with a Kath’s **/***, all seem to agree today.
    Hard to find a favourite, going for 19a, nearly put in beverage, as I also thought the first letter of 19d could be B for book, anyway saw the light in the end.
    Thanks to all.

  12. Like Kath, I struggled a bit with the spelling of 13a – it just looks wrong!
    Otherwise, no problems to report. Fortunately I remembered the foreign songs from previous puzzles.
    Quite liked 14d once I’d found the correct second word and favourite was probably 16d.

    Thanks to Mr Ron and to Kath for the review – I thought your 5d gentleman looked like a victim of too much real ale rather than one suffering the effects of a certain stage of life!

  13. A real struggle, many of the the clues were just too cryptic for me to unpick. Resorted to fitting in words that match the checking letters and then seeing if they have any relation to the clue. Not the best way to solve a puzzle.
    A real tedious slog. For me ***/*
    Thx for the hints.

  14. Very enjoyable with some exceptionally clever and intricate wordplay in places. It would have been a quicker solve had I not convinced myself that “coops” constituted the second half of 17d, I see that I wasn’t alone!

    My two favourite clues were 13a (great mental image) and 5d.

    Many thanks to today’s compiler and to Kath.

  15. Like YS, I felt this was harder than it really was. Definitely not a RayT, I managed to complete it!
    I liked 7d, very smooth, but fave was 5d. I initially put “bell” as the second word of14d, which held me up a bit.
    Thanks to setter and to Kath for her review.

  16. I definitely have not got my crossword hat on this week. I put ‘passport’ into 24a which meant that the only word I could put into 19d was ‘dewdrop’……and I knew that didn’t make sense. I tried to detail ‘slogan’ rather than ‘only’ so wasted a lot of time on 5a. 25a I hadn’t heard of and need to commit to memory. Well at least I finished it today, even if I needed a bit of help. I had to go off to the dentist half way through this as I broke a tooth last night. Not on my courgette cake, on someone else’s muesli bar. A big thank you to Kath for the review, and thank you too setter.

  17. Solved this sitting on the banks of the Trent at Newark. Pleasant day and a pleasant puzzle.

  18. Some very misleading clues – very good and thoroughly engaging. Most of it went in quite quickly, then I was left with three in the NE corner, and three in the SW which took as long as the rest put together. Plenty of candidates for top clue, 16d pips at the post.
    Many thanks to setter for a top puzzle, and to Kath for the review ***/****

  19. I needed more help than I should have , which I put down to brain freeze after returning to work from a 3 month holiday.
    I liked 16d and 19a. Thanks to Kath and the setter.

  20. I enjoyed this. I too pondered the spelling of 13a and initially had a different second word for 14d. My favourite today is 16d. Thanks to the setter and to Kath.

  21. With 14d I delayed putting in the second word of the answer until I had the checkers in place. At least it saved the embarrassment of trying to fit the 5 letters of clock into the lights available. Plenty of good fun clues so much enjoyed. Looks like I was wrong with my guess at Shamus on Tuesday so will nominate him again for this one and keep my fingers crossed.
    Thanks Mr Ron and Kath.

    1. Oh – clever clogs!
      I put the wrong answer for the second bit of 14d without thinking of the alternative until 23a got a bit tricky. :roll:
      I also dithered about which 17a to put in – these, along the the lurkers, are the ones that are likely to catch me out every time.

    1. So what do you make of this one then?
      Younger Lamb, i.e. our younger daughter, aged about three, was in a grump one evening. Her Dad went upstairs to read her and her elder sister a story before they went to sleep. He’d obviously taken the wrong book and wasn’t very popular – she said, “Why did you bring that book I didn’t want to be read to out of up for?”

  22. A very nice puzzle set at just the right level for a Thursday. 22ac was my last one in as well Kath. Thanks to the setter and thanks to Kath.

  23. A very nice puzzle set at just the right level for a Thursday. 22ac was my last one in as well Kath. Thanks to the setter and thanks to Kath.

    I only get duplicates when using my ipad

    1. Ah ha!! As I thought (see comment 5).
      Many thanks Shamus for the puzzle, and thanks for popping in…

    2. OK – so have you deliberately stopped putting the Irish references in just to put me off the scent?
      If so, it worked – again!

  24. I have to stick my hand up and say that I never, even in my wildest dreams, thought that this was a Shamus crossword.
    I can back this up with why I thought it wasn’t one of his.
    1) I usually have far more trouble with him
    2) Nothing really made me laugh
    3) Very few others, even the ‘Shamus spotters’ suggested that it might be one of his

    Oh well, wrong again – too bad.
    Thank you, Shamus.

  25. I found this trickier than most, and only got about half way before I had to read Katy’s hints, thank you. Nice of Shamus to drop by. I was just not on the wavelength today. Could also blame it on fracturing my skull when I was 18 months old ( tipped high chair over), well that’s my excuse any way 😪

  26. Thanks Shamus. Thanks Kath for hints which I read to check I had the padding right. Like some others I shall have to remember detailing. Not for the first time this week SW last to fall with 16d last in. 5d first in with favourites 9 and 20a and 5 and 15d. Was held up with the latter as I thought the photo was a snap!

  27. Knackered now so off to bed.
    Need to be up early tomorrow as I’m off to see my little grandson, Georgie, again, and his parents, of course!
    Thanks again to Shamus for the crossword and to all for the comments.
    Night night and sleep well :yawn:

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