DT 28573 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28573

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28573

Hints and tips by Miffypops

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Kia ora from South Warwickshire

Wednesday is usually a Jay puzzle decrypted by the Two Kiwis, Colin and Carol. Jay is here as usual but Colin and Carol are celebrating fifty years of marriage on a long trip to India. Congratulations to them both.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a Rough guides for those needing a lift? (5,2,5)
RULES OF THUMB: A guiding set of principles, perhaps (hence the question mark) for those who may be attempting to hitchhike.

9a Giant injured groin with sumo wrestling (9)
GINORMOUS: An anagram (injured) of GROIN is followed by a second anagram (wrestling) of SUMO

10a Understood source of interest in diplomacy (5)
TACIT: The initial letter of the word interest is to be placed inside a noun meaning diplomacy

11a A mistake, vacuously chasing crazy Frenchwoman (6)
MADAME: The letter A is gifted from the clue and followed by the outer letters (vacuously or empty) of the word mistake. These three letters are placed after (chasing) an adjective meaning crazy or insane

12a Saying that’s popular within total golf (8)
UTTERING: Place our usual crosswordland word indicating popular inside an adjective meaning complete or absolute and the abbreviation for golf

13a Greeting mother, regrettably coming back (6)
SALAAM: This greeting is common in Arabic and Muslim countries. It can be found by returning (coming back) an informal endearment for one’s Mother and an exclamation used to express grief pity or concern

15a Critics of these often found on the door (8)
KNOCKERS: Persons who continually find fault are also objects hinged to doors and rapped by visitors to attract attention and gain entry

18a Wealth of guild regularly viewed in old money (8)
OPULENCE: The odd numbered letters of the word GUILD are contained within the abbreviation for old and the smallest denomination of English currency

19a Poles must anticipate urge to grass (6)
SNITCH: The abbreviations of the two poles are followed by an urge or desire (possibly after seven years)

21a The girl’s in a depression, being a follower (8)
ADHERENT: Find a singular word meaning belonging to a female. Use the letter A from the clue and a noun meaning a sight hollow in a hard even surface. Place the female somewhere inside those two words. (The girl in a depression)

23a Enough to satisfy head of Interpol before power boost (6)
FILLIP: Begin with a word meaning enough to satisfy ones hunger perhaps. Add the initial (head of) letter of Interpol and the abbreviation for power.

26a Good communist limits Eastern hunger (5)
GREED: . . . And keeping on the hunger theme … Begin with the abbreviation for good. Add our colour associated with communism. Wrap these letters around (limits) the abbreviation for Eastern

27a Person who shares Spooner’s dislike of rodents? (9)
HOUSEMATE: Begin with a small rodent often chased by a cat. Find another word meaning to dislike or detest. Swap the first letters of each in the style of The Reverend Spooner and join the two new words together.

28a Pair (English) confronting extravagant forward (12)
PRESUMPTUOUS: Use the common abbreviation for a pair. Add the letter E representing English and add an adjective meaning extravagant, lavish or splendid and expensive looking


1d Resort merges restricting island systems (7)
REGIMES: An anagram (resort) of MERGES is placed around (restricting) the abbreviation for island

2d Curtains may be so connected with no end of work (5)
LINED: Find a word meaning connected as a chain is connected perhaps. Remove the letter K (end of work)

3d Second offence will include periodical brawl (9)
SCRIMMAGE: Use the abbreviation for second. Add an offence punishable by law. Include within these letters a three lettered journal such as the Saturday and Sunday supplements in this newspaper.

4d Fellow left work a failure (4)
FLOP: The first three words of this clue are all old favourites. Use the abbreviations for fellow and left and add another abbreviation this time of opus which is a musical work

5d The man’s Italian and worker’s uncertain (8)
HESITANT: Begin with a male pronoun to which we have added the letter S from the plural in the clue. Add the abbreviation for Italian and our regular worker insect.

6d Time in simple measure (5)
METRE: Place the abbreviation for time within an adjective suggesting simplicity or insignificance

7d Chance of Ant and Dec being relocated around the Channel Islands? (8)
ACCIDENT: An anagram (being relocated) of ANT and DEC is placed around the abbreviation for Channel Islands

8d Street’s houses get old steps (6)
STAGES: Use the usual abbreviation for Street’s including the apostrophe S. Place inside these three letters (houses) a word meaning to get old

14d This may be canned and used as medicine, proverbially (8)
LAUGHTER: Proverbially this is the best medicine. Also Proverbially he who does this last will do it longest. The reference to canned refers to the practice of adding a recording of this to the soundtrack of a comedy programme

16d Happy to cross one new area of our planet (9)
CONTINENT: Place an adjective meaning happy around the letter that looks like the number one and the abbreviation for new.

17d A container like this is needed for prickly plant (8)
ACANTHUS: Use the letter A from the clue. Add a three lettered container (not a tin but similar) Now add an adverb that means like this.

18d Fruit and duck on kitchen stove (6)
ORANGE: Begin with the letter that looks like the cricket score referred to as a duck. Add a large kitchen stove

20d Unfortunate student in poor shape finishes at last (7)
HAPLESS: Place the usual letter denoting a student or learner inside (in) an anagram (poor) of SHAPE. Add the last letter (at last)of the word finishes.

22d Horseman‘s answer ignored by attacker (5)
RIDER: This horseman or horsewoman can be found by removing (ignored) the letter A (answer) from a word meaning an attacker

24d Partly fill an order that’s plain (5)
LLANO: Our only lurker of the day. Hidden within the words of the clue and indicated so by the word partly

25d Stick around a Pacific island (4)
GUAM: Place a word meaning to stick or fasten around

My favourite clue was 20 down. What was your’s?


55 comments on “DT 28573

  1. A very enjoyable Wednesday puzzle, completed at a gallop – **/****.

    Candidates for favourite – 1a, 12a, 15a, 14d, and 17d – pick one.

    Thanks to Jay and MP.

    P.S. – the Toughie is also very ‘doable’ and just as enjoyable.

  2. Lovely and friendly and, unusually for Jay, no need whatsoever to start with the Downs.

    Thanks to him and MP too

  3. Yes, it was pretty easy today – unlike yesterday’s. */***. I choose 14d as the winner today. Toughie is friendly as well.

  4. Almost a walk in the park compared with yesterday’s humdinger! No problems with this one and a pleasure to solve. 23a was probably my fave and 2/4* overall.
    Thanks to Jay, and to MP for standing in….

  5. Gentle but very enjoyable last night. 1/4.

    Just for the crazy image it invokes, and the surface, I’ll pick 9a as favourite!

    Thanks to Jay and the landlord.

  6. Aaaaand . . back to normality. This was a slow starter, but soon found a steady pace. Finished in an even 3* time, only really held up by my wrong choice of spelling for 6d – this made 12a the last one in.

    A couple of foreign words and two very unusual ones might annoy some, but I suppose we need to accommodate all views.

    Many thanks to the Jay and MP.

  7. No problems with this today and much needed after yesterday’s mauling.
    A few obscurities (to me), namely 13a, 25d, 17d, 24d, but all solvable from the wordplay.
    1a was favourite today, I even managed to get the Spoonerism which is a first, I think.
    Thanks Jay and MP, you are clearly doing overtime at the moment.

  8. 14d my favourite in this pretty straightforward but pleasantly enjoyable Jay puzzle. I even appreciated the Spooner clue, which is not my default position. 2* /4* seems about right for this one.

    Many thanks to the aforementioned and to MP.

  9. I have just realised why I enjoy popping in here as often as possible. Unlike the rest of the WWW, all of us here seem to be able to spell and punctuate properly!

        1. BL, I set my iPad to the UK, it helps enormously. There is a downside, if you search for something, you have to specify USA.

  10. I agree with CS – no need to start with the Down clues.
    I found this a bit less tricky than usual for a Wednesday – I often get stuck on several answers at the end but today it was only about five.
    I’ve never heard of the 24d plain and can’t spell the 25d island.
    One of the things that I notice is how many anagrams there are in a crossword – very few today.
    I really liked 11 and 19a and 17d, mainly because I like the plant. I know I’m in the minority here but Spoonerisms nearly always make me laugh – 27a was my favourite.
    With thanks to Jay and to the overworked MP.

    1. 27 was probably my favourite for the same reason. I also found 9 amusing and enjoyed the irony of 26.
      Jay’s clues often make me smile.

  11. I found this enjoyable as ever from Jay and not as tough as Wednesday can be. The surface of 9a amused me. I thought the spoonerism was particularly well done because the reverend was incorporated meaningfully into the surface.

    Thanks to Jay and to the PSB.

    P.S. Snape (as Eccles) is in usual sparkling form in the Independent today, with another familiar name lined up to bring us tomorrow’s treat.

  12. Though less tricky than yesterday I had to toil a bit with this one. I am usually rubbish at Spoonerisms but I managed to decipher 27a. 3d was the top clue for me

  13. The answer to 20d is not blocked out.
    Fortunately I got it before reading that…………….

  14. Agree with MP’s **/*** today-back to the norm ,
    Liked the spoonerism, seem to be getting better at them-we shall see.
    I think 24d,last in, was new to me.
    Thought 13 was going to be shalom until 14d arrived.
    Failed with the Quickie pun as I had loop for 3a,never mind.
    No stand out clues-maybe 17d for its surface.
    Thanks all.

  15. The relief after yesterday’s offering was the most enjoyable part of this. Loved it.
    I didn’t “get” 2d, so thanks for that M’pops.
    I didn’t know that 9a was a real word, had to look it up.
    My fave was 1a, but I also liked 17d a lot.
    Thanks to Jay and to M’pops for standing in.

  16. Fairly straightforward and solver-friendly, I don’t remember encountering 24d before, I suspect Jay had no other alternatives to fill the grid though.

    My top three, in solving order, were 27a, 9a and 14d.

    Many thanks to Mr Mutch and the even more ubiquitous one.

    1.     Tue 18 Jan 2011   Telegraph Toughie 495   Plain returns on the whole (5)
          Fri 11 Sep 2015   Telegraph Toughie 1464   Plain score draw held up after European’s sent off (5)

          Thu 8 May 2003   Guardian Cryptic 22825   Rising over everything: is that plain? (5)
          Thu 22 Apr 2004   Guardian Cryptic 23123   Plain Welsh town that must have faulty name dropped (5)
          Tue 9 Aug 2005   Guardian Cryptic 23528   It’s plain Welsh resort must drop useless name (5)
          Tue 21 Nov 2006   Guardian Cryptic 23929   Some diagonal lines drawn up, it’s plain to see (5)
          Fri 16 May 2008   Guardian Cryptic 24390   Cricket side needs total to rise, that’s plain (5)
          Tue 12 Apr 2011   Guardian Cryptic 25294   Plain refusal after everyone’s upset (5)
          Wed 30 Sep 2015   Guardian Cryptic 26690   Motherless animal raised on plain (5)

          Thu 22 Jun 2017   Independent 9576   Not all backed National Lottery, that’s plain (5)

      It does appear to be the only word that fits.

      1. Thanks, Mr K.

        It confirms my suspicion that I hadn’t seen it in a DT backpager in recent memory, the Guardian setters do seem to have a penchant for it though!

        1. Yes, it’s not been seen on the back page at least as far back as November 2001. Those seven appearances in the Guardian came from six different setters. Only Paul has used it twice.

  17. Good fun with 19a 4d and 20d appreciated for different reasons. Did not know 24d.
    Wasted too much time wondering if the ‘rodents’ should be singular for 27a, otherwise it would be ‘hicemate’. (How posh.) I’ll get over it.
    Thanks to Jay and to MP for the review.

  18. A bit of a slow start but once I got going it came together fairly quickly, 24d was a new word to me but it was fairly signposted and the trusty BRB confirmed it.

    Chalk and cheese compared to yesterday’s real poser – thinking about it I yesterday’s Crossword must have been a ‘wrong envelope’ job!

    Very quiet Halloween last night – let’s hope it’s dying out!

    1. Incidentally, I heard today from one of my neighbours that it has become the convention for kids to knock begging for sweets – or ‘Trick or Treating’ as it’s also known – if your house is displaying a pumpkin on the outside. What a good idea!

      When my kids were young they used to go ‘Trick or Treating’ around the neighbourhood with their friends. One of my neighbours was a teacher and a bit of a part-time hippie, and when the kids knocked on her door she offered them a large bucket for them to delve into. They were quite upset when the bucket only contained a load of rather squishy grapes – the kids never bothered her again!

  19. Nice and straightforward after yesterday day **/**** 😃 In fact the phrase in the Quickie took most of my time 😟 Favourites 1a & 17d, thanks to Jay and to MP 🍺

  20. I solved this early and have been out all day since then so I’m posting later than usual.

    This was another in a long line of lovely Wednesday back-pagers. I found parts of this one quite challenging, and my rating is 2.5* / 4*.

    24d was a new word for me and I didn’t think that 9a was a real word. However I checked my BRB and found both there.

    27a was my favourite as I particularly liked the way the definition blended so smoothly into the surface reading of the clue. 15a was my runner-up.

    Many thanks to Jay and to the indefatigable MP.

  21. I believe I’ve previously mentioned the clarity of definitions in the Wednesday crossword making for a pretty good chance of spotting the solution prior to any deep thinking on the inner structure of the clues. Alas, this didn’t work quite so well for me today, as I failed to get the SE corner moving at any appreciable speed. Solving 23a (not a word I come across very often in everyday life) finally got things moving. In the end, the 24d lurker turned out to be a new one on me. Favourite: the Spoonerism reference (perhaps I’m in the minority on that one?). Nicely constructed puzzle.

  22. An enjoyable, fairly straightforward solve that would have been quicker if I’d followed the cryptic for 3d (SCRUMMAGE anyone?), and if I could spell 28ac – there’s no I in it, apparently. ;-) I half wondered if 9ac needed some sort of indicator that it’s informal, slangish.

  23. Just fulfilling my antipodean role and popping in to see that you have all been playing nicely. Sorry for the mistake at 18ac. It should read the even letters of the word guild as Ricardo is about to point out. Thanks in advance for that Ricardo

  24. Thanks to Jay and to Miffypops for the review and hints. A very enjoyable puzzle, but quite gentle. Good fun though. Last in was 24d. Favourite was 27a, I love Spoonerisms, took me a while though. Really liked the surface. Was 2 ✳ /3 ✳ for me.

  25. Enjoyed this today, a relief after yesterday’s struggle. Never heard of a 24d. I was quite expecting a ribald picture for 15a 🙂

    1. The Two Kiwis never add ribald pictures and nor have I. As custodian of their blogging day I have tried to emulate their very polite style. Nothing gratuitous here.

  26. Just to add something about 27a – not that it has anything to do with the clue or the answer.
    We have one of a pair of cats who belongs to Elder Lamb and her partner staying with us at the moment – it’s a long story but I won’t bother you with it all.
    Yesterday just as we were going to bed she brought in a mouse – we shut her in the kitchen and left her to get on with it because there didn’t seem to be anything else to do – this morning she seemed to think that it was under the dishwasher. This evening I found it in my handbag! I now have ‘mouse hate’! :sad:

    1. I hope it was alive! The horrible gingers kill the mice but leave the lizards alive. I put a skirt on the other day and there was a lizard in it. It attached itself to my back and I couldn’t reach it to shake it off! Grrr.

  27. Good evening everybody.

    Mostly very straightforward and quick but 12a stumped me so I have to put this down as four star difficulty. In mitigation I only had half an hour as I had to go out very early today. Looking at the hint I don’t think I’d have solved it anyway.


  28. Late on parade today/yesterday as away staying with family and didn’t want to be anti-social so waited until I had retired to bed. After yesterday’s nightmare it was a joy to have good fun combined with a nice amount of challenge. Failed to decipher the Spoonerism and was ignorant of the plain. Still tossing up for outstanding Fav between 1a and 15a. Thank you Jay and MP. Didn’t begin to come up with the Quickie pun.

  29. Super. Looked last night but did not make much progress so slept on it. Favourites 1a and 27a. I too was looking for a saucy picture for 15a but in the current climate Miffypops would probably have to fall on his sword. Last one in 12a. Thanks all.

  30. Going really well until I made a pigs ear of 2 down. Put in scrumages with one m. Don’t know why. 27 across was my favourite.

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