DT 28645 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28645

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28645

Hints and tips by Falcon

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Greetings from Ottawa where the temperature roller coaster is on a downward plunge. As I write this, it is Wednesday evening Ottawa time and the temperature is -11°C. When I awake tomorrow morning it will be -19°C. Only a couple of days ago, it was +10°C and by the weekend, it will be back to +5°C.

While the puzzle is by RayT, that should not dissuade anyone from attempting it as it is at the lower end of the difficulty scale. For some, it just might be the first RayT they manage to complete unaided.

The puzzle seemed to split along the diagonal running from lower left to upper right. I completed the portion above that line in no time at all. The portion below the line took a bit more effort but was dispatched quickly.

The definitions are underlined in the clues and the answers can be revealed by clicking on the ANSWER buttons (so avoid clicking on them unless you really want to see an answer).

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought of the puzzle.


1a   Entertain model after do (11)
CONTEMPLATE — a model or pattern follows a verb meaning to do or cheat

10a   More attractive Mediterranean resort by river’s mouth (5)
NICER — a French resort city and the mouth (initial letter) of River

11a   After bedtime, it’s what one’s got up in? (9)
NIGHTGOWN — a cryptic definition of the get up some don to go down for the night

12a   Detective’s anger about old man getting run down (9)
DISPARAGE — the usual senior detective (as well as his accompanying S) and a synonym for anger surround another colloquial term for father

13a   Girl caught inside a tale? (5)
ALICE — the cricket abbreviation for caught finds itself inside the A (from the clue) and a deceptive tale

14a   Flexible member joining ends of extensor (6)
LIMBER — a body part becomes linked to the outer letters of ExtensoR

16a   Express disapproval with delay in double English teaching (8)
TUTELAGE — an expression of mild disapproval followed by a synonym for delay sandwiched between two instances of E(nglish)

18a   Food and board surrounded by endless comfort (8)
EATABLES — here (according to Oxford Dictionaries) board is an archaic term for an eating surface set for a meal; surround it with most of a word meaning comfort or relaxation; endless denotes missing the end rather than going on forever

20a   Leader of socialists, finest joker? (6)
SCREAM — the initial letter of Socialists followed by the finest (that which rises to the top)

23a   US soldier in ocean capsized, getting protection (5)
AEGIS — the usual US soldier is immersed in a reversal of another name for the ocean

24a   Skill overturning idiot’s stupid new belief (9)
TRADITION — a charade of a reversal of another word for skill, an anagram (stupid) of IDIOT, and N(ew)

26a   Former vagrant tucking into sober mixer (9)
EXTROVERT — the usual former (husband, wife, or lover) precedes a wanderer blanketed by a two-letter abbreviation denoting sober or abstinent

27a   Top of beer containing oxygen (5)
POINT — the customary measure of beer containing the chemical symbol for oxygen

28a   Enterprise warping, catching last of Klingons to scatter (11)
INTERSPERSE — an anagram (warping) of ENTERPRISE encircling the final letter of KlingonS


2d   Oceanic residents cruising around sea initially (5)
ORCAS — the initial letters of the definition reveal the solution

3d   Place for supporters to see Queen in spot (7)
TERRACE — Her Majesty’s regnal cypher is embedded in a small quantity

4d   Chap put on island about turned loony (6)
MANIAC — a charade of another term for chap, I(sland), and a reversal of the two-letter abbreviation for a Latin term meaning about or approximately

5d   Woody is on glue, smashed (8)
LIGNEOUS — an anagram (smashed) of the three words in the middle of the clue

6d   Measure cost supporting bird (7)
TITRATE — a small songbird rests on (in a down clue) a price or charge; in North America, where this songbird is known as a chickadee, the British name would undoubtedly raise a titter

7d   A French mature brie finally deemed authentic (13)
UNADULTERATED — string together a French indefinite article, a word meaning mature or fully grown, the final letter of briE, and a term meaning deemed or judged

8d   Propose, as into name changes (8)
NOMINATE — an anagram (changes) of INTO NAME

9d   Meatier tinned liquid could be uncertain (13)
INDETERMINATE — an anagram (liquid) of the first two words in the clue

15d   Calm partner eating Italian icing vacantly (8)
MITIGATE — a husband, wife or other partner placed around IT(alian) and the exterior letters of IcinG (the interior being vacant)

17d   Part of reggae’s the technique used by aficionado (8)
AESTHETE — the first lurker of the day is concealed in this clue

19d   Instrument playing encapsulating old instrument (7)
BASSOON — a stringed instrument and another word for playing (as in “What’s playing at the cinema?”) around O(ld) produce a woodwind instrument

21d   Cold type of ice cream in hamper (7)
CRIPPLE — C(old) and ice cream having a marbled appearance

22d   Single’s following previous aniseed drink (6)
PASTIS — the Roman numeral that represents a single (and the hanger-on S) follow another word for previous or prior

25d   One struggles to find climbing plants (5)
IVIES — the Roman numeral for one and a synonym for struggles or competes

When it came to picking clues for special mention, I found there were not a lot of contenders screaming for attention. I did get a chuckle from the image of the Toy Story dude sniffing glue at 5d and I rather liked the Star Trek theme at 28a. However, the award for favourite of the day goes to 11a.

The Quick Crossword pun: door+knelt+rump=Donald Trump

66 comments on “DT 28645

  1. I found this towards the easier end of the RayT difficulty scale but still lots to enjoy.

    Thanks to Falcon and RayT 2*/4*

  2. I agree with Falcon that this was very solvable yet still with plenty to enjoy along the way. Lots of Ray T trademark clues, with 16a my favourite. 2* /4*

    Thanks to both the aforementioned.

  3. Did anyone else get the cryptic crossword print the toughie today???? I have been struggling with it for ages and only got 9 answers in an hour!!!!! On speaking to my brother and asking him the answer to one of the clues we discovered I had todays toughie but at the top it says ‘CRYPTIC CROSSWORD NO 1958’ and not Toughie!!!????? and I definitely printed it from the cryptic page!!!!!! I couldn’t believe it when he said it was relatively easy today when I had been really struggling!!!!

    1. Something weird happened with the DT website. I did half the Ray-T on the train this morning. Opened the crossword at work in a sneaky moment and it was a completely different crossword with an empty grid!! About an hour later, I tried again and the Ray-T appeared again with all my original entries!!

  4. I enjoyed that today. Seemed like I completed it in corners and a there were a few odder meanings for words but thoroughly enjoyable nonetheless.

  5. I was rather slow to finish this one. It was solved as two triangles, with the top right half going in first.

    Enjoyable as always – thanks to RayT and to Falcon.

  6. Great solve. Didn’t know 6d, but easy enough to work out.
    16a my favourite
    Thanks to all

  7. Apropos of absolutely nothing at all, here are some great anagrams (oldies and newies) that were sent to me recently (forgive the overkill of upper case letters)…















    Finished off with the old classic…


    1. A couple of well-known political ones to add to your list:



      1. Goes straight on to the all-time podium.

        Your own work Kaff or someone else’s genius?

      2. I’d like to claim it as all my own work but that would be fibbing! I can’t remember where it came from but it was a long time ago and I’m pretty sure it wasn’t from this blog.

    2. Two more for the list . . . Ted Heath = The Hated
      Neil Warnock (a football club manager for those of you not in the know) Colin is the first part of the anagram . . . Work has the remainder out yourselves if you wish – its quite rude. ;-) ;-)

        1. :-D :-D :-D. There seems quite a few of us from the county so I clearly needed to come up with a different word from the others to add to ‘Shropshire’. I could have used ‘Salop’ in my alias, but chose not to.

    3. Too late as usual to write much, but I’ll just add my fav anagram. The late Sir Peter Scott once described the Loch Ness Monster as a genuine new species: Nessiteras rhombopteryx. Someone swiftly pointed out the anagram: ‘Monster hoax by Sir Peter S.’ Perhaps there is a Man in the Sky after all?

      1. Great work.

        I hope there’s a good story behind ‘Bonkers Conker’ and, if there’s not, make it up…..

        1. Just for the record – it’s the name of a brand of ale which until recently sold widely in East Anglia, issued only during Autumn time. Haven’t seen it for a few years now – hence dutifully enshrined in my BD alias (nope, I didn’t make that up!).

  8. Another good ‘un from RayT. North caused less pause for thought than the South. Fav was 4d with 26a close behind. 5d and 6d now added to my vocabulary for possible future reference. Thank you setter and Falcon.

  9. A fairly gentle offering from RayT. My daughter was excited to see a 2d close up a couple of weeks ago in the Arctic Circle.
    Many thanks to Falcon and setter.

  10. 3* / 4*. This was an excellent Ray T puzzle with all his usual trademarks, although one or two surfaces were a bit iffy (e.g. 4d).

    My favourite was the outstanding 7d.

    Many thanks to Ray T and to Falcon.

  11. Very enjoyable, a few head scratchers for me, but got there eventually.
    16a was my favourite. Thanks to Ray T and Falcon

  12. A typically RayT. All of his trademark clues are present. But for a few gimmies most answers needed teasing out from the clues. I liked doing exactly as requested and getting 7d. Thanks to Falcon and thanks to RayT.

    I think these might be the girls in the picture for 19d.

    1. Thanks very much, MP. I enjoyed the music and also learnt for the first time how to spell Gotye. Never having seen it in writing before I had assumed his name was Gauthier. (Jean-Luc will be proud of me!)

  13. Needed a bit of electronic help with this one, but enjoyed it nevertheless.

    Thanks to the setter and to Falcon for the hints.

  14. Well, I found the bottom half much easier than the top. This was not helped by 1a holding out until the very last. I didn’t know 5d, although the fodder was obvious, and I spent ages trying to get more out of 11a – first 5 letters=bedtime, last 3 letters= what one’s got, but that left me with a solitary letter.

    ***/**** for me, many thanks to Falcon and Ray T.

  15. A lovely Ray T crossword to brighten up an already bright and sunny morning – very different to yesterday.
    I agree that it was at the lower end of the difficulty scale.
    12a took me a long time as I was thinking of the wrong kind of ‘run down’ and 7d needed a fair bit of putting together.
    Apart from those two I didn’t have too much trouble.
    I particularly liked 16 and 20a and 15 and 25d. My favourite was 1a and the Quickie pun.
    Thanks to Ray T and to Falcon.
    No time for crosswords yesterday so now I have a backlog – more fun for later after a bit of tidying up in the garden.

  16. Ray T being benevolent today I fairly rattled through this crossword. All the usual trademarks were in place bringing a smile to my face on several occasions. 26a was my top clue and 2/4* overall.
    Thanks to Ray T, and to Falcon for his review.

  17. A**/*** for me today.
    Seemed to be one of those days when the solution went in before I’d read the clue properly.
    Light and enjoyable with excellent charades.
    Thanks to the setter and Falcon for the pics , I remember the drawing of Alice from the Carroll book in my youth-always thought her head was too large !

  18. I’ve come to look forward to RayT puzzles, but this one I found something of a disappointment. RD is being charitable when he says one or two surfaces were iffy, I thought that several failed to convince unfortunately. I’ll be interested to see Jane’s thoughts on the subject.

    My ticks went to 1a, 16a and 28a, Mr T must be a Trekkie I reckon! 22d was a new word, but I suspect well-known to our setter being resident in France as he is.

    Many thanks to Mr Terrell and to Falcon.

  19. I can normally fathom Ray T’s puzzles but I got into trouble with 18&23a 6d and 16a due to a hasty insertion of tutorage. That’ll teach me 😩. Thanks to all.

  20. Indubitably RayT at his most benign. I solved this sans hints, but, full disclosure, some electronic help, not enough to make me lose interest though.
    When will I ever learn. I bunged in 2d but had no idea why.
    Fave was 11a but 7d was running pretty close.
    Thanks to RayT and to Falcon, especially for 2d.

  21. A typical struggle with a Ray T as usual but completed after lots of head scratching. Still not really on his wavelength today. Overall it must have been somewhat on the benign side for me to finish it.

    Clue of the day 12a

    Rating 3.5* / 3*

    Thanks to Falcon and Ray T.

  22. Oh I do enjoy a RayT. It took me a ridiculously long time (especially given the setter is known for that type of clue) to see 2d. I didn’t know 22d and I needed the dictionary to check that the word didn’t begin with L, which was my first guess.

    My favourites are all acrosses: 1a and 20a, plus the use of “run down” in 12a. I also really liked that in 13a in addition to working as a standard clue the whole thing also works as a definition. I thought the clue for 6d pretty restrained – and I had several of the birds in that one in my hand today, so that generated some free extra smiles.

    (The quickie pun gets a thumbs down from me though.)

    Thanks to RayT and Falcon.

  23. At the risk of being disloyal to my favourite setter, I didn’t think this was quite up to his usual high standard. Definitely dotted with a few iffy surfaces and also a distinct lack of his trademark innuendo.

    1a gets my vote today but nothing really seemed outstanding.

    Devotions and apologies to Mr T and thanks to Falcon for the blog.

  24. 1a took a little time to come to mind so this meant a slight delay in getting started but once we were underway it all flowed smoothly. Plenty of chuckles of course along the way. Clue word count checked and all in order.
    Thanks RayT and Falcon.

  25. This might have been on the easy end of a RayT, but my mother-in-law has just completed a RayT for the first time. We are celebrating with cake before heading off to the local panto. Many thanks RayT and Falcon. It a took a couple of minutes to understand ‘do’ in 1a, as I usually think of some sort of party. No overall favourite today.

  26. Really enjoyed this one even if people are saying it is at the easier end which I need whilst I am learning Ray T crosswords.
    I assume the 2 letter Latin phrase in 4d is Circa but isn’t it usually just C in crosswords?
    Best clue for me was 22d because it always reminds me of holidays in La Belle France.
    For me ***/****
    Thx to all

    1. Well done, Brian. Yes, the two letter Latin phrase reversed (turned) is Circa – sometimes in crosswords it’s C and sometimes it’s CA – I suppose it depends on what letters the setter needs at the time.
      As for 22d – yuk, is all I can say – just give me a reasonable glass of red wine any day.

  27. I wanted to say a big thank you to all for the hints and tips. Seemed to have a bad bout of brain fog the last 2 days and needed a lot of prompting to get the grey cells whirring.

  28. I always struggle with Ray T puzzles, and found today’s harder than yesterday’s Toughie. Needed quite a bit of help and Falcon’s hints, and some clues just didn’t work for me. So although most others found this on the benign side, I would definitely have to go sit in the dunce’s corner today.

  29. I thought there was an awful lot of answers ending in “ate” when it wasn’t in “age”.
    Apart from that, I found it quite enjoyable and definitely on the lighter side of RayT.
    Thanks for the drink in 22d.
    Thanks to RayT for the crossword and to Falcon for the review.

  30. Good evening everybody.

    Unlike everybody else I found this puzzle very tricky, a proper Mr T if you will. I eventually got there but had to guess at 22d. Favourite clues were 1a and last in 7d. 2d eluded me for far longer than it should have done.


  31. Late on duty after quite a busy day. Completed the puzzle in fairly good order and now enjoying a Burns Night dram. No real stand out clues for me, but a nice satisfying solve all the same. Thanks to RayT and Falcon.

  32. An enjoyable Ray-T completed in ** time. I agree, at the simpler end of the Ray=T scale but no less enjoyable.
    The only hiccup was the DT website having a wobbly.
    Many thanks to both.

  33. I do not understand why extraneous interrogatives are creeping into modern usage, examples being the clue to 11d and this sentence?

  34. I feel like I have been doing a different crossword from all of you. I found this quite hard – at least the half that did not slot in at first pass. Too many distractions maybe or too late in the day. Words like 5d & 6d and definitions like 21d I’d say it was top side of 3-star for difficulty. Still enjoyed it though. In fact there are very few puzzles that I do not enjoy.
    Thanks to Ray T and Falcon. (always great to see the setter call in)

  35. This was excellent again from Ray T – certainly not his most difficult but still above average for a back-pager. Mostly elegantly succinct clues, a reasonable challenge and very enjoyable. 3* / 4*.

  36. Thanks to Ray T and to Falcon for the review and hints. A super Ray T puzzle, most enjoyable.I wasn’t sure about 5&6d, but dragged them up from the memory bank.I hadn’t heard of 22d, but it was fairly clued. I liked 21a, but my favourite 14a. Was 2*/4* for me.

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