DT 28541 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28541

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28541

Hints and tips by a philosophical Miffypops

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

This is the day the Lord has made. Rejoice and be glad in it.

Or today is the day you have. Shut up with the moaning and get on with the good things like this crossword puzzle. A joy from start to finish. Thank you Rufus for today’s entertainment and thank you Bob Seger for singing along. I could use a bit of help to understand the last two letters of 2d.

The hints and tips below are here to help. The answers can be found underneath the click here boxes


Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a    Joint that’s just over a foot (5)
ANKLE: A cryptic definition of the joint between the foot and the leg

4a    Every letter is written in it (8)
ALPHABET: Another cryptic definition. The name given to the set of letters from A to Z

8a    Fearless, being in flipping saucy papers (8)
INTREPID: A three-part charade. 1. Begin with the word IN generously gifted to us from the clue. 2 Find a four-letter synonym of the word saucy and invert it (flipping). End with the abbreviation for the papers you might have to show to be served in a pub if you are lucky enough to look very young.

9a    Gave credit for writer that’s penetrating in the present era (8)
ASCRIBED: Place a very old (700 years) term for a writer within the abbreviation that defines the present era as that after the birth of Christ

11a    Red Star delivery for dealers (7)
TRADERS: Anagram (delivery) of RED STAR

13a    The bride will be up in arms over it (9)
THRESHOLD: What the bridegroom traditionally carries his bride over when they first enter the marital home after their wedding. If he behaves like me she will have plenty of opportunities to be “up in arms” thereafter. However, once she learns that subservience obedience and forgiveness lead to true happiness all will be well. I hope that is what Kath thought forty years ago yesterday. Congratulations Kath.

15a    Using coarse expressions, more or less (7,8)
ROUGHLY SPEAKING: A double definition. The first defining the use of base or crude language

18a    Finish unfinished ‘White Stoat’ in gallery (9)
TERMINATE: Place the name of the white stoat without its last letter (unfinished) inside the name of the art gallery (now four galleries) that began as The National Gallery of British Art in 1897

21a    Rolled and possibly curled around head of hair (7)
LURCHED: Anagram (possibly) of CURLED placed around the letter H (head of hair)

22a    Sets firm with unusual angles (8)
CONGEALS: Begin with our usual abbreviation for a firm or company and add an anagram (unusual) of ANGLES

24a    Judge of knitted ties and cooked meat (8)
ESTIMATE: A double bubble anagram. Begin with an anagram (knitted) of TIES and finish off with an anagram (cooked) of MEAT

25a    You’ll find the answer at the foot of the column (8)
PEDESTAL: The name of the foot of a column. End of.

26a    Love going round university for money (5)
EUROS: Place the name of the Greek god of love around the abbreviation for university.


1d    A strict or a liberal gentleman? (10)
ARISTOCRAT: Anagram (liberal) of A STRICT OR A. Do not google the answer together with the word joke. You will not like the result

2d    Shrew’s tail cut by chap from the French capital, alternatively (8)
KATMANDU: Begin with the name of Shakespeare’s shrew minus its last letter (cut). Add a word meaning a chap or bloke. With the first six letters in place the answer is obvious so we don’t need the rest of the clue which is good because I don’t actually know how it works. When this happens I like to throw the question out to those who comment but Big Dave likes to have the clue fully explained. I will send this to him and see what he does with it. [He will point out that the last two letters are the French for “from the”, and that this is an alternative spelling of the capital BD]

3d    The latest possible hour (8)
ELEVENTH: A cryptic definition of the latest hour we have. The one after the tenth and before midnight or midday

4d    Help a character in opera (4)
AIDA: A word meaning to help is followed by the letter A from the clue to form the name of an opera by Giuseppe Verdi

5d    Centre right is showing overconfidence (6)
HUBRIS: The first three words of the clue are all you need here. Begin with a word meaning the centre (of a wheel perhaps) add the abbreviation for the word R(ight) and add the word IS from the clue. Do not look to use the word heart to mean centre. I did and it got me nowhere.

6d    Possibly shoots ducks with graduate doctor (6)
BAMBOO: Begin with a graduate, a Bachelor of Arts and add a doctor, another graduate actually, a bachelor of medicine. Finish off with a couple of ducks. The letters that look like the nil score in cricket.

7d    Securedthe same numbers of points? (4)
TIED: A double definition which should be easily solved by all

10d    Quietly blame Deighton over explosive fallout? (8)
SHRAPNEL: Start with the sound one makes when trying to quieten things down. Add an informal noun meaning the blame and add the reverse (over) of the shortened first name of the novelist whose surname is Deighton.

12d    Contradictory orders to the yachtsman for extra canvas (8)
STAYSAIL: Split 4,4 we have an instruction to stop curb or check something. Add what a canvas on a boat is. Together they name one such canvas.

14d    Canine tenacity? (10)
DOGGEDNESS: The tenacity grit determination or steadfastness that might be used to describe such qualities in one of our canine friends

16d    Failed to use a bit over for recycling (8)
ABORTIVE: Anagram (recycling) of A BIT OVER

17d    Unsettled on a flight (2,3,3)
IN THE AIR: Where you would be on a flight also means not yet settled or undetermined

19d    Managed to get detectives to reveal rank (6)
RANCID: Chestnut time. Use a word meaning managed and add the abbreviation used for the Criminal Investigation Department

20d    Reformed ladies, they’re highly thought of (6)
IDEALS: Anagram (reformed) of LADIES

22d    Cut down meat (4)
CHOP: A double definition. The first being to cut down with an axe possibly and the second being a cut of meat.

23d    Animal seen when ocean has left (4)
SEAL: Begin with a word that describes what an ocean is and add the letter L from Left. You should now have an aquatic mammal.

As usual mostly solved quickly but the last couple took more thought.



54 comments on “DT 28541

  1. 1.5*/4*. Nice to find Rufus back on form today. I’m not sure whether or not I like 2d as it seems a bit strange to use such an uncommon spelling even though it is clearly indicated as such by “alternatively”.

    This was not difficult but great fun with 13a my favourite of an excellent selection.

    Many thanks to Rufus and to MP.

    P.S. MP, the last two letters of 2d are the French translation of “from the” (as well as “of the”).

    1. A greatest hits set on YouTube. Roll Me Away, Night Moves, Turn The Page, You’ll Accompanny Me, Hollywood Nights, Still The Same, Old Time Rock And Roll, We’ve Got Tonight, Against The Wind, Mainstreet, The Fire Inside, Like A Rock, C’est La Vie, In Your Time.

  2. I have started to enter the answers in red to clues with which I needed assistance. Entering broadly speaking for 15 across did not help my count! A good struggle , thank you Miffy pops and Rufus.

  3. Nice start to the week. Thanks to the setter. Fairly straightforward with lots of good clues. I liked 2d, 6d, 10d, 12d (although I hadn’t heard of this word before) with 13a being my clear favourite. 1.5*/3.5* for me.

  4. A funny old mixture – some barely cryptic clues like 1a, 4a and 3d, then some tougher clues like 2d and 10d. Anyway, thanks to all as usual.

  5. A thoroughly enjoyable Rufus outing for me. Normally they fail to ‘grab’ me, but today was good fun. Perhaps because I was ‘grandparenting’ this weekend, so had a bit of a break.
    A few I could not parse, so looking forward to MP’s typically excellent hints.
    I will check the Bob Seger video, I hope it’s “We’ve got tonight”, magnificent song. “I know it’s late…I know you’re weary…”
    Thanks all.

  6. Very enjoyable, completed at a fast gallop – */***.

    Definitely a Rufus based on anagram count and a couple of nautical clues; that’s sticking my neck out with my questionable setter detector system.

    Immediate favourite – 15a.

    Thanks to Rufus and MP.

  7. This was a lovely mixed bag of R & W combined with some head-scratching. 12d now added to my vocabulary. Really liked surface of several including 13a,15a, 2d and 5d. Thank you Rufus for a fun start to the week and MP particularly for including the moving Grand Triumphal March in your hints.

    1. I was lucky, I saw Aida at the Baths of Caracalla in Rome in the 1960s! It was gorgeous. Can you imagine someone green, fresh out of the colonies, seeing something like that.

      1. I have just googled The Baths Of Caracalla. How on earth did we miss them when we were in Rome? Your trip there to see the opera must have been the stuff of dreams Merusa.

  8. Just me then – I’d always spell 2d like that!

    Nice start to the week with my top two being 13&15a.

    Thanks to Rufus and to MP for the blog – knew it was too much to expect you to use a Phil Collins clip but at least you stuck to the right song! The 5a ‘badpun’ made me laugh.

    Belated congrats to Kath – hope you celebrated in style.

  9. Straightforward as the Monday puzzle usually is. 15a was my top clue. I always thought that the Nepalese capital had a h in it after the curtailed shrew.

  10. I couldn’t pick a winner between 13a and 18a, with 6d also getting a mention in dispatches. A cracker of a puzzle today, which, although straightforward, was great fun and hugely entertaining. Overall 1.5*/4* from me.

    Many thanks to Rufus and MP.

  11. A typically enjoyable Rufus puzzle, he must be a fan of this particular grid as he seems to use it quite often.

    My favourites were 13a, 26a and 19d, even if it is something of an old chestnut.

    Many thanks to Mr Squires and to the philosophical one, and belated congratulations to Kath.

  12. Always remember that tomorrow is the first day of the rest of your life.
    That’s that, really enjoyable crossword a nice mix of clues and I think ****\****
    for me.
    To many good clues to pick a favourite.
    Thanks to Miffypops and Rufus.

  13. As most agree the usual Monday solve and a jolly start to the week, about a **/****, give or take a 1/2 * !
    like Miffypops played around ‘heart’ for 5d until the penny dropped, never really knew what the definition meant, not often seen in print-there you go .
    Thanks all, dark in Cheshire !

  14. Enjoyed this. **/***** for me.
    1 down was my last in and probably my favourite clue. A real ‘DOH’ moment.
    Many thanks to both

  15. Thanks to Rufus and to Miffypops for the review and hints. Quite enjoyable, but I found it very hard going. Needed the hints for 1,2,16d&26a. I can’t believe I missed two anagrams. As for 2d, I didn’t have the faintest idea what it was about. I’ve since Googled who the shrew was, one for the memory bank. Favourite was 12d, which was a new word for me. Was 4*/3* for me.

        1. I realised when I read the hint but did not know her name.
          Only Shakespeare I vaguely understood was Macbeth, I found the language totally beyond me.

          1. Oh, Hoofit, there’s so much good stuff in Sakespeare … “All the world’s a stage…”, “if I had served my God with half the zeal I served my King…”, etc, I often pick up my copy and just read. Henry V is full of beautiful words.

      1. Ignore them, Her name was Catharina.
        Can you imagine Shakespeare calling his characters Baptista, Hortensio, Gremio, Petruchio, Bianca just to name a few and Kate!!!

        1. Not certain if you are being serious or not. Her full name was Katherina, Kate for short, as such she is referred to in the play..

          1. Thought you knew me by now.
            Everything I say must be taken with a pinch of salt and a spoonful of medicine.

  16. Enjoyed today’s crossword though I thought the use of ‘alternatively’ in 2d was a little misleading as there have been plenty of answers in the past which have been alternative spellings without being signposted like this.

  17. Quite a nice puzzle somewhat ruined by 3 very poor clues in 8a, 2d and 6d.
    Apart from that ok but nothing special. For me */*.
    Thx for the hints.

  18. 2.5/3 for me today, as I just couldn’t solve 2d, 6d, 12d, or 16d, though most across clues were straightforward. 15a and 18a were my favourites. Thanks to Rufus and Miffypops ! Loved the pun on 4a !

  19. Happy Monday puzzling – just the thing to start the week. With reference to 2d it remind me of a Goon show when they went there and katmanthree & Katmanfour etc. Spike Milligan on top form.
    Great puzzle, excellent hints although not needed today.

  20. Enjoyable crossword today. I didn’t know 2d wasn’t the usual spelling. Last one in was 17d
    Favourites were 10d and 26a.
    Thanks for the hints.

  21. Loved it, wotta treat. Without doubt, fave is 13a, but 5d deserves honourable mention, even though, like you M’pops, I tried like the dickens to get heart in there somehow.
    Thanks a million Rufus, and M’pops for the hugely enjoyable hints and tips.

  22. A very enjoyable puzzle – the only problems I had were with 26a, where I didn’t see the anagram, and 16d where I didn’t associate the God of Love with ‘U’niversity, I was looking for something to do with recycling and basically went off on a tangent.

    I got them both by the ‘bung it in’ method without fully,or even partly understanding the clues – they turned out to be right so no harm done.

  23. Not too much trouble today even though I’m rarely on the right wave-length on Mondays.
    I was a bit slow with 8 and 13a.
    4a was so obvious that I didn’t put it in until I had some checking letters in case I was missing something – I wasn’t.
    I’m not sure whether I really like or really don’t like 14d.
    I did like 13 and 25a and 5 and 6d. I think my favourite was 15a.
    Thanks to Rufus and to MP.

  24. Once I’d realised who the shrew was in 2d it became my favourite. Thank you Rufus and Miffypops. I saw the play at Stratford-upon-Avon many years ago.

    1. Saw a great version in Avignon last year. A half Spanish/French troupe from Montpellier with North African music. Definitly one of the best show I saw that year.

  25. What is there to say.
    I just put my Rufus thinking cap on and everything went smoothly.
    Didn’t even have time to tick any clue as I had to rush to work.
    Thanks to Rufus and to MP.

  26. No real probs, but it is a Monday and I really dont expect probs! Always fun to do, this did not disappoint. 5d was my favourite. Overall, 1.5/3.5*.
    Thanks to Rufus, and to the philosophical one for his review and Bob Seger. Like a Rock has the bestest steel solo in the world! It still sends shivers up my spine.

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