DT 28562 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28562


Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28562

Hints and tips by pommers

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Morning all and welcome to Thursday’s crossie.  I’m pretty sure that it’s not a RayT and I have an idea who it might be, not least because it’s a pangram, but with my record of setter spotting that’s as far as I’m going.  It’s the first pangram we’ve had on my watch for ages but I twigged the possibility of one far too late for it to be of any help in the solving.

I thought it was going to be a breeze as I got eleven of the acrosses and eight of the downs on first pass.  Then it was a bit like finding speed humps on the M6 and I ground to a bit of a halt.  Last two in were the interlocking 23a and 19d and I must have stared at them for as long as the rest of the puzzle had taken before the penny finally dropped on 23a with a very loud clang – tea-tray moment or what?  A most enjoyable puzzle for me and I’ll be interested to hear your views on it.

As usual the ones I liked most are in blue.  The definitions are underlined in the clues and the answers are under the “click here” buttons so don’t click on them unless you really want to see the answer.  Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


7a           Extremely macabre crimes, terribly fascinating (8)
MESMERIC:  Start with the end letters (extremely) of MacabrE and then an anagram (terribly) of CRIMES.

9a           Declan having edges cut off Irish cake (6)
ECLAIR:  Take the end letters off dECLAn (having edges cut off) and follow what’s left with the abbreviation of Irish.  The BRB has a rather splendid definition of this cake – “long in shape but short in duration”!

10a         Bad-tempered rooks maybe seen around area (4)
MEAN:  A word for what rooks are an example of, or pawns, knights or bishops even, and place it around A(rea).

11a         Vehicle the woman parked in pound gets crushed (10)
VANQUISHED:  Start with the type of vehicle, usually white, which always overtakes you on the M1 no matter how fast you’re going.  After that you need a word for “the woman” inserted into (parked in) a slang term for a Pound Sterling

12a         End  protest (6)
OBJECT:  Double definition.

14a         See an article creating hatred (8)
LOATHING:  The common crosswordland two letters for “see” or “look” followed by an article as in an object.

15a         Budget speech lacking nothing (6)
RATION:  Take the usual speech or address and remove the O from the front (lacking nothing).  

17a         Section of song about Egyptian god (6)
CHORUS:  Single letter for about followed by an Egyptian god gives a repeated section of a song.  This is the god whose eye turns up in the quiz show “Only Connect”.

20a         Feeble pet cried out (8)
DECREPIT:  Anagram (out) of PET CRIED.

22a         After short horror film, start to exorcise spirit (6)
PSYCHE:  Take the last letter off Alfred Hitchcock’s famous horror film (short) and follow with an E (start to Exorcise).  I was going to include the shower scene from said film but on reflection decided it’s not the sort of thing you want to watch before your lunch!

23a         Unsubtle ambassador shown in group in paper (10)
BROADSHEET:  A word for unsubtle, as in not focused, is followed by the initials of the title of an ambassador inserted into a group to give the style of newspaper of which the Daily Telegraph is an example.

24a         Bark from limited collection of trees, foremost in forest (4)
WOOF:  Nothing to do with trees but another word for the bark of a dog. It’s an area of trees without its last letter (limited) and followed by an F (foremost in Forest).

25a         Fanatic in middle of boozers, unusually late getting round in (6)
ZEALOT:  Take the middle letter of booZers and follow with an anagram (unusually) of LATE and insert an O (getting round in).

26a         Superficial sort plugging leak (4-4)
SKIN DEEP:  Another word for sort or type is inserted into (plugging) a type of slow leak and the result split (4,4).


1d           Don’t forget about subscriber? (8)
REMEMBER:  Two letters this time for about followed by a subscriber to something.

2d           Low-down involving male agents (1-3)
G-MEN:  These agents are agents of the FBI.  They’re low-down as in information with M(ale) inserted (involving).

3d           Right after parking, I check it could mark the property edge? (6)
PRIVET:  Put an R(ight) after a P for parking, then the I from the clue and finally a word for check or evaluate and you’ll get a type of hedge which might well be around the edge of your garden.

4d           Party without French water supported by northern dandy (4,4)
BEAU NASH:  A famous Dandy who lived in Bath in the 18th century.  Start with the French word for water and after it (supported by in a down clue) an N(orthern). Around this (without) put a word for a party.

5d           Moment to worry dodgy dealer (5,5)
FLASH HARRY:  A word for a moment or short period of time followed by a word for to worry or hassle.  Did this term for a dodgy dealer originate from the character in the St Trinians films or was it the other way round?

6d           Greedy eater served with one monstrous bird (6)
PIGEON:  A greedy eater followed by an anagram (monstrous) of ONE.

8d           Light cold? Treat first off (6)
CANDLE:  C(old) followed by a word for treat or have dealings with but without its first letter (first off).

13d         Always squeezing by on the outside (10)
EXTERNALLY:  A word for always or everlasting is placed around (squeezing) a letter for by as in “two by four” as a measurement of timber.

16d         Facing it during contest (8)
OPPOSITE:  Insert (during) IT into a word meaning to contest or be against something.

18d         Type of glass  vessel (8)
SCHOONER:  Double definition. 

19d         Fancy woman not having married, I repeat (6)
STRESS:  Take your fancy woman or bit on the side and remove (not having) the M(arried) and the I (from the clue).  I’m not 100% convinced abut the definition here.

21d         Took home edition about composer of anthems (6)
EARNED:  Took home as in “take home pay”.  Start with the abbreviation of edition and put it around (about) the 18th century composer who wrote Rule Britannia and a version of God Save the King.

22d         Rotten place to clear (6)
PUTRID: A word meaning to place (3) followed by a word meaning to clear (3).

24d         Extra off the mark (4)
WIDE:  An extra in cricket is also a word meaning off the mark or missing.

A fair amount of blue but favourite was 17a with 5d and 6d up there on the podium.

Quick crossword pun:     ROUX     +     TEENS     =     ROUTINES


70 comments on “DT 28562

  1. I wouldn’t disagree with any of pommers’ favourites but would add 13 and 21d to the mix, nominating 11a as my favourite. The puzzle was not particularly easy, but all the more enjoyable for the challenge, so 3/4 for me overall.

    Many thanks to the Thursday setter and to pommers.

  2. Very enjoyable and fairly straightforward , although 19d held me up and whilst I had the answer , the penny only finally dropped when I read the hint .So thanks pommers and the setter. **/****

  3. Firstly and most importantly – HAPPY BIRTHDAY KITTY! :rose:

    2.5/4. I really enjoyed this pangram, much of which was straightforward but a few clues, particularly in the SE corner, took quite a bit of teasing out with 19d & 26a my last two in. 5d was my favourite and I particularly liked the image conjured up by 25a.

    Many thanks to Mr Ron and to pommers.

    1. Thank you, my favourite rabbit! I’m spending it writing a Toughie blog and then doing some more unpaid work this evening. That’s just the kind of party girl I am …

  4. That was a lot of fun. I was prevented from completing as I drew a blank on 19d and eventually needed you, pommers, to parse my bung-in thought however I do have doubts about that clue. 10a and 13d were also unparsed bung-ins. Thank you Mysteron and pommers.

    1. The use of BY to give you an X isn’t all that common but it is worth remembering as it turns up from time to time.

    2. And for the benefit of beginners and the uninitiated, a full explanation: 2 times 2 = 4; 2 by 2 = 4; 2 x 2 = 4.

  5. I flew through 80% of this puzzle but was held up by a few that others have already mentioned which stretched me into 2* territory.

    Thanks to pommers and setter 2/3.5

    Happy Birthday Kitty!

  6. I liked this puzzle it made me work to finish it but all was gettable. Thanks for the parsing of 26ac pommers. I missed the kind. Nice puzzle nice blog. I think there have been an armada of schooners recently. Ta to our setter. Ta to pommmers

  7. I’m having a good wavelength week, this flowed in nicely. 19d is just about OK with me. It’s about time 18d was retired, or at least a different take on the word found. 13d just about favourite, even though it;s a bit of an elderly conker too.
    Many thanks to setter and to pommers for the review. **/***
    Many Happy Returns, Kitty.

  8. Yes, 19d was a bit of a stumbling block today – I think I understand it now but it’s a bit convoluted for me – not one of the best – IMHO!

    Otherwise, I enjoyed the puzzle, though quite tricky.

  9. Firstly I agree with Pommers on a **/****, a steady solve held up a tad by the SW corner.
    Lots of lovely surface reading like 17a,22a.
    Initially thought that the bye in 13d had something to do with an extra in cricket as extra is in the clue-then saw my reading error-need new glasses-just putting it off !
    Thanks all-never seen a pangram yet.

  10. Just to rock the boat I struggled with this one, quite the toughest of the week.
    However determination prevailed with electronic help being used for 6d and 22d.
    Thanks to Pommers and setter.

  11. Lots of fun in a puzzle which didn’t last all that much longer than a few 9as but gave me paws for thought at the end.

    I wouldn’t normally choose something that goes 24a, but that was a great clue.

    25a was a contender, but my favourite might just have to be 6d.

    Many thanks to the setter and pommers.

  12. I really enjoyed this, not too difficult but not a R&W either. A bit of gk required but some lovely clues. Favourite probably 22a. **/**** for me. Thanks to Pommers and Mr Ron.

  13. I found this almost R&W, but got held up on a couple.

    12a finally conceded and I was left with 6d. I parsed it wrongly, convinced that we needed a greedy eater with a I in it to give the monstrous bird. DOH!

    **/*** for me.

    Many thanks to the setter and Pommers.

  14. Like several here I too fairly wizzed through the majority of this puzzle only to grind to a a crawl on the last three or four clues in the SE corner. 23a was my last one in.
    My fave was either of 11 or 17a – I’m not sure which one…. maybe the former.
    2/3.5* overall.
    Thanks to the setter, and to Pommers for the review.

  15. Very enjoyable. Some general knowledge content which I personally enjoy. Went on pangram alert as soon as I got 13d and 25a quite early. **/*** for me. I liked 11a, 24a, 19d, 21d with 5d being my favourite today. Happy birthday young Kitty.

  16. That’s almost a shame, I was quite looking forward to doing battle with a Ray T. Surely it should be his week?
    This was quite nice though and I did like 3d, it made me smile.
    So my rating would be **/***
    Thx to all

  17. Thursday always seems to be a tough one for me! Held up in the NE corner until I decided 6d was not a large, yellowish gull-type bird which can also describe a greedy person. Realised 24a must relate to doggie sound but still needed pommers help. Hey-ho, getting there slowly.

    Thanks to setter and especially pommers.

      1. Many thanks, BD. Have posted before so have I submitted this comment under a different name/password? Apologies if I have!

  18. I too had a similar experience to Pommers with a fast – slow – doh! progression. I too had 23a & 19d as a final sticking point especially as I was trying to use DT or FT as the first and last letters of 23a. Had to finally resort to peeking at the answer for 23a however the hint for 19d was on the money to get me over the finishing line. Thanks to setter & Pommers.

    1. Ditto re: the last two in. I too was trying to start and finish with FT or DT. I thought FT mor likely and toyed with flamboyant for a while until I got a few more of the checkers.

  19. I thought this was quite difficult – certainly more than 2* for me but good fun too.
    Didn’t think I’d ever see the day that Brian said he’d been looking forward to doing battle with a Ray T, but I agree with him.
    My last two answers were 23a and 19d and they both took ages – I was slow with the 6d bird too – no excuses there.
    I’ve met the ‘by’ in 13d before but had forgotten about it so that caused a spot of bother and I’m always foxed by the 2d agents.
    As usual I missed the pangram.
    I liked 11 and 22a and 5d. My favourite was 24a – made me laugh.
    Thanks very much to whoever set this one and to pommers too.

  20. I tend to print out the puzzle from the website, then do it whilst eating my lunch in the canteen at work (or staff restaurant as they prefer to call it), and key it in when I’m back at my desk just to check. As I started to type it in today, I suddenly realised it was a pangram, too late to be of any help.
    I found the puzzle quite straight forward but more enjoyable than most so thanks to whoever set it, and to Pommers for the review.
    17a also reminded me of Only Connect which is my favourite quiz on tv.
    */*** from me.

  21. Enjoyed solving this pangram though it was not all that straightforward for me. 24a made me laugh once I figured it out. 11a was my top clue. Many happy returns Kitty

  22. Just realised that my original comment has gone AWOL – not sure what happened there!

    Anyway, I began by apologising for being late in on such an auspicious day and by wishing an extremely happy birthday to our very own Kitty cat. I hope a moderate* amount of of alcohol is on the agenda for later in the day?

    I found this one got rather more difficult towards the bottom with 23a being the last to fall by quite a margin.
    I see that our setters still have a good supply of 9a’s to dish out and I was grateful for those and for the fact that I continue to persevere with Only Connect (despite the presenter) as 17a could otherwise have taken quite some time.

    5&6d took the top spots with a nod to12a for its conciseness.

    Thanks to Mr. Ron and to Pommers for the blog.

    1. Thanks. I am back now, but sober. Even hoping for an early night, though might not quite manage that. Libations can wait. I have to pace myself pre-York anyway!

  23. This was such fun, plenty of originality and amusing clues, I thoroughly enjoyed it.

    Difficult to select particular favourites, but I’ll plump for 7a, 11a and 26a.

    Thanks to the setter, to Pommers, and many happy returns to Kitty!

  24. Wishing you a very happy birthday, Kitty. I had to look at your toughie blog to get my feline fix.
    I loved this. Like pommers, I started out thinking this was going to be easy peasy but soon got held up in the SE corner.
    I nearly gave up on 24a and 24d, then realised it was a pangram. After going through all the letters, I had the penny drop moment. I spent as long on those as the rest of the puzzle.
    I needed electronic help to get 5d, shame on me, I so loved the St. Trinian films.
    I can’t choose a fave, too much choice.
    Thanks to setter, really enjoyed this. Thanks to pommers for the fun hints.

  25. Can anyone suggest why the word “without” is in 4D “Party without French water supported by northern dandy”

      1. When I was a child going to Church I always wondered about the lyrics to the Holy Week hymn “There is a Green Hill far away without a City Wall”. It took me a while to click that without meant outside, but it has come in useful for solving crosswords over the years.

  26. Nice crossword agree with Pommers **/**** 😃 One or two quite tricky clues🤔 Favourtite 24a closely followed by 11a & 23a Thanks to Pommers for the blog and to the setter 👍

  27. Good evening everybody.

    Nice puzzle. Lots of good clues. Favourite 5d. Couldn’t see derivation of 8d, 17a.


  28. I haven’t seen this said above-apologies if it has. Concerning doubts about the definition in 19d, is it not “stress”? then from “mistress” omit both m for “married” and “I”.

    Maybe so obvious, not worth pointing out! Apologies again

    1. The problem is not in the wordplay Ash. It lies in the definition. Does the word REPEAT really mean STRESS?

      1. I think there should be at least a ? or a perhaps. To repeat something is to stress it but but there are many other ways of stressing something..

        1. As long as it is correct in one sense or another, it’s fine in my view.
          To repeat a point in speech is to stress a point.
          I’m certain the setter will have checked it out, the verb is given in Cambers Thesaurus as synonymous.

          1. That was my take on the usage. For example, compare:
            “But he is innocent, I stress!” with
            “But he is innocent, I repeat!”

              1. “The unprecedented solar eclipse this morning is no cause for alarm; I repeat, no cause for alarm…” – stressing the point.

                1. I agree with Letterbox Roy and C Klinger. “ I stress – if in doubt use your dictionary or thesaurus”. “I repeat – if in doubt use your dictionary or thesaurus”. Repeat here is being used to mean emphasise.

  29. Like others, I rattled through 80%,and then hit he cruciverbal wall.
    The last few took an age to sort out and I needed a couple of nudges from Pommers excellent hints.
    Thanks all.

  30. Raced through the NW corner, but then slowed to a crawl before staggering over the finishing line in **** time. Last in 19d where, like others, I’m less than convinced by the definition.

  31. 19d was the last one to go in, and not with much conviction. But double checked on here, and agree with Pommers!

    1. Swapping from googlemail to gmail put your comment into moderation and “lost” your avatar. I have fixed the former and the latter can be fixed by adding the new address to gravatar.com.

  32. Thanks to the setter and Pommers for the review and hints. I enjoyed this one very much, it was plain sailing until, like Pommers, I was left with 23a&19d to solve. Amazingly I too had a penny drop moment with 20a, then 19d was last in. Favourite was 24a, for the misdirection. Was 2/3 for me.

  33. Last ones in for me were 9d and 11a.
    Pangram helped again to get that last letter in.
    Short and concise cluing made the experience a real joy.
    Thanks to the setter and to pommers for the review.

  34. Found this quite tough, but just because of my own slowness today, not helped by a cracking headache, but still greatly enjoyed. A big thank you to Pommers for the clip at 21d. Turned up the volume and we both thoroughly enjoyed singing along. You can take take the girl out of England, but you can’t take England out of the girl 😊.

    1. I, too, enjoyed the clip at 21d. Loved the proms when I lived in England. When I was a young girl in Jamaica, we were still Brit (independence didn’t come until 1961) and we used to sing that with great gusto at school. Lovely, moving anthem. Also “there’ll always be an England, etc.” I’m still very much a Brit.

  35. Over all too soon, but some smiles in the process. 5d was my favourite, but l spent too long trying to come up with a solution related to cards. Thanks to the setter, and Pommers.

  36. Thanks Setter and Pommers. Most of it went in quickly but left with a number in the SW. The same two that troubled most commentators took me as long as all the rest together. Once I had them I ringed them as favourites together with 5 and 22 down.Very enjoyable. Certainly took more teasing out than others this week.

  37. I found this difficult but enjoyed the challenge. Couldn’t do 23a, 19d or 21d. I got the answer to 8d but couldn’t see the word for treat. I wasn’t thinking about that sort of treat. Thanks for explaining.

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