DT 28619 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28619

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28619

Hints and tips by Mr K

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BD Rating  –  Difficulty ** –  Enjoyment ***


Hello everyone, and welcome to the final Tuesday back-pager of 2017.  It’s a solid and enjoyable puzzle which shouldn’t require too much thinking outside the box.  Just what today calls for.

In the hints below underlining identifies precise definitions and cryptic definitions, and most indicators are italicized.  The answers will be revealed by clicking on the buttons.  In some hints hyperlinks provide additional explanation or background.  Clicking on a picture will usually enlarge it.  Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.



1a    Roman officers run section badly (10)
CENTURIONS:  An anagram (badly) of RUN SECTION

6a    Island offering cereal crop — for the ears (4)
BALI:  An Indonesian island that sounds like (for the ears) a cereal grain.  It’s also where this trinket box was made

9a    News chief’s entertaining heads of government — enormous creeps (5)
EDGES:  Some usual news chiefs containing (entertaining) the first letters of (heads of) Government Enormous

10a   Model seduced outside church? Victor did it (9)
SUCCEEDED:  A usual abbreviation for church with an anagram (model) of SEDUCED wrapped around it (outside)

12a   Major half-trembles in English river (7)
EXTREME:  Insert half of TREMbles into a Devon river

13a   Spells  words (5)
TERMS:  A double definition.  Spells in office, and another word for words

15a   Hesitated with female going to get changed (7)
ALTERED:  Take a word meaning hesitated and drop the abbreviation for female (with female going

17a   Animal runs over with energy — grass has come back (3,4)
ROE DEER:  Link together usual abbreviations for runs, over, and energy, and then append the reversal (has come back) of a tall water grass

19a   Scout did sleep, so every other character lies close (7)
CUDDLES:  Take the appropriate alternate letters (every other character) of SCOUT DID SLEEP SO

21a   Count winemaker’s bottles spread out (7)
UNTWINE:  The clue hides (bottles) the answer

22a   Jog naked around centre of Margate (5)
NUDGE:  Wrap an synonym of naked around the central letter of MarGate

24a   Penny with object to give out (7)
PRESENT:  Follow the abbreviation for penny with “object to”

27a   So upsetting for the peer, having lost power (9)
THEREFORE:  An anagram (upsetting) of FOR THE PEER minus the physics symbol for power (having lost power)

28a   Dance with zero taste? The contrary (5)
TANGO:  “The contrary” here is instructing us to reverse the wordplay.  So we are being told to find a dance from a taste or flavour followed by the letter than looks like zero 

29a   Make hush money (4)
DOSH:  A short synonym of make and an interjection requesting quiet.  This box of money is not what it appears to be

30a   Bridge players requiring ID? It will make the press (10)
NEWSPAPERS:  Take one permutation of the abbreviations for the four players in a game of bridge, and append another word for identity documents



1d    Care to let go of a wife’s hands? (4)
CREW:  Connect together CARE without its A (to let go of a) and the abbreviation for wife

2d    Forgotten knight returned holding nag’s tail (9)
NEGLECTED:  The chess symbol for a knight, followed by a word for returned as a consequence of getting the most votes, with the last letter of naG inserted (holding nag’s tail)

3d    Leading group in distress (5)
UPSET:  Link together leading or winning and group or collection

4d    Fashionable drink in outskirts of Stroud as an alternative (7)
INSTEAD:  The usual word for fashionable, followed by a brewed drink in between the outer letters of (outskirts of) StrouD

5d    United Nations overturned sanction for type of weapon? (7)
NUCLEAR:   Take the reversal (overturned) of the abbreviation for the United Nations and append sanction or approve

7d    Something to climb left out for snake (5)
ADDER:  Drop the abbreviation for left (left out) from a climbing aid

8d    In secret I’d developed rash (10)
INDISCREET:  An anagram (developed) of IN SECRET I’D

11d   Beg to be in French outing? (7)
ENTREAT:  Glue together the French word for in and an outing for pleasure

14d   Curious — being fine, I sat dance out (10)
FASCINATED:  The abbreviation for fine and an anagram (out) of I SAT DANCE

16d   Release right priest before close of day (7)
RELIEVE:  Concatenate the abbreviation for right, crosswordland’s usual priest, and a poetic word for “close of day”

18d   Being sixteen, worried about Ecstasy (9)
EXISTENCE:  An anagram (worried) of SIXTEEN, followed by single-letter abbreviations for about or approximately and for Ecstasy

20d   Expect attitude after drink (7)
SUPPOSE:  Place a synonym of attitude after a verb meaning to drink

21d   Vain American embracing tennis player (7)
USELESS:  An abbreviation for American containing (embracing) an American tennis player who was born in Yugoslavia and who won the French Open in 1990 at age sixteen

23d   500 Royal Engineers put on ship’s clothing (5)
DRESS:  Chain together the Roman number for 500, the obvious abbreviation for Royal Engineers, and the usual letters representing a ship

25d   Player making run in cricket (5)
EXTRA:  A double definition.  A very minor player in a film, and a run scored in cricket which is not attributed to a batsman (such as the no-ball which just reprieved David Warner) 

26d   Spare tyres cease to rise (4)
POTS:  These spare tyres are not vehicle accessories.  Find them from the reversal (to rise, in a down clue) of cease or halt


Thanks to today’s setter for a most pleasant solve.  19a is my favourite.  What’s yours?


The Quick Crossword pun:  PER+LEA+GAITS=PEARLY GATES

28 comments on “DT 28619

  1. I solved 26D by looking in the mirror! A nice gentle romp no real stand out clue for me. Many thanks to the setter & MR K for his reveiw.

  2. A very pleasant solve for a Boxing Day morning. I particularly enjoyed 2d, although there were several worthy contenders for favourite, and overall the official rating of 2* /3* felt about right.

    Many thanks to both Misters involved in today’s production.

  3. I can’t post from my Android tablet while the site is in lock-down, so having to borrow the laptop…I hope the site can return to normal soon. Maybe the idiots have been given a new toy for Christmas to keep them amused.
    I am rubbish at cryptic crosswords at the moment and can’t remember the last time I finished unaided, no idea why??? This follows several weeks of finishing fine.
    I had ‘Mays’ for 6a, which is happens to be an island in Iowa. So no wonder I can’t do these at the moment.
    Thanks Mr.K and the setter.

  4. Nice puzzle nice blog. I made a useless box as per the illustration for 21d. I have another ready for assembly. I will be more complicated than the first. Ta to all.

  5. A pleasant Boxing Day romp – nothing to overtax those suffering from the effects of over-indulgence yesterday!

    I particularly liked 5d for the clever surface read and also 27&29a.

    Thanks to Mr Ron and to Mr K – particularly for the illustrations of 29a&21d.

  6. Quite enjoyable, completed at a gallop – **/***.

    A raised eyebrow or two at one or two clues – 13a for example.

    Candidates for favourite – 24a, 2d, and 25d – and the winner is 2d.

    Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  7. I struggled with this initially, my head was a bit thick this morning so I had to take the dog out and breath some fresh air before I had my second wind. Plenty of anagrams which is right up my street, and no obscurities – so all in all a very enjoyable puzzle.

    More strong drink will be taken later so I hope it’s a nice easy one in the morning!

  8. Nice and gentle today. Needed after yesterday’s indulgencies. 1.5*/3.5*. I liked 2d, 19a, 27a but 1d was my clear favourite – unusual for a 4-letter answer.

  9. Thanks to setter and blogger for a very pleasant and not too taxing crossword today.
    I agree that 19a provided a pleasant penny drop moment but 30a was equally satisfying in my opinion. Nice to have a crossword without a lot of christmassy clues which were getting a bit tiresome (please ignore the bah humbuggery of the above comment if you are still in a post yuletide glow)

  10. Lovely photo to illustrate 19a but I wonder if Mrs Kitty knows that such intimate selfies are spread webwide ;)

  11. Late night, late rise, late start to the crossword, but finished without outside influence. A nice start to the end of the year.

    My only hiccup was putting BARGE for 22a, which I thought quite fitting.

    Many thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  12. 2* / 4*. Just the job for Boxing Day – good fun but not too taxing. 5d was my favourite.

    Many thanks to Mr Ron and Mr K.

  13. A very pleasant romp, completed last night. It helps when we start with an anagram.
    1d was my last and favourite .
    Thanks to Mr K and to the setter.

  14. Agreed RD; just what was required today. 1d was my top clue, and also last to be entered.
    2/4* overall.
    Thanks to Mr Ron and Mr K.

  15. Enjoyed this one very much and completed it without resort to electronic aids or hints. Hurrah!

    Thanks to the setter and to Mr K.

  16. 1d was our last in and favourite in a puzzle that we thought was good fun all the way through.
    Thanks Mr Ron and Mr K.

  17. I don’t know why I found this one so tricky but I was rubbish, even though 1a started out well. I needed hints for 1d and 9a, silly really as they were not difficult. Isn’t wavelength a strange thing.
    Fave was, natch, 19a, particularly for the pic.
    Thanks to our Tuesday setter and to Mr. Kitty for his great review.

  18. Happy Christmas everybody! Teeming with rain here today, so didn’t have to wait ’til bedtime to indulge in the cryptic. Couldn’t spell 8d, which upset 21a. Fair run apart from that.
    Thanks to all who work hard to make this such an excellent post throughout the year. There must be lots like me who only post once in a blue moon, but who tune in almost every day for elucidation…

  19. Enjoyable, but needed Mr K’s help for 3 clues, thank you. Didn’t care for 26d, must be an expression that has come into use since we crossed the pond. Loved picture at 19a, as cat at front very much resembles our Tonkinese, Rupert. And he does love to cuddle.

  20. For some reason I cannot fathom why 6a which is the only Island that fits sounds
    like a cereal crop. Obviously something lacking in my education

  21. Thanks to the setter and to Mr Kitty for the review and hints. I enjoyed this one, but found it very very hard going. I was completely beaten by 1d. Wouldn’t have got it in a million years. Favourite was 4d. Was 4*/3* for me.

  22. I can sympathise with Hoofit because I was trying to put Maze in for 6a, which is a greek island off Kas in Turkey (probably spelt it wrong). Bad spelling day altogether as I ended 8d with ete. Durhhh. Not surprisingly I needed the blog. Ta.

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