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DT 28652


Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28652

Hints and tips by Deep Threat

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Good morning from South Staffs, where the day has started bright, but the forecast is less promising.

The answers in today’s Giovanni didn’t necessarily leap out on first reading, but the impeccable wordplay meant that, as always, the clue could be solved.

In the hints below, the definitions are underlined. The answers are hidden under the ANSWER buttons, so don’t click if you don’t want to see them.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought. 


7a           That cut flower is something sweet (7)
SUCROSE – Remove the final letter from a word for ‘of that kind’, then add a garden flower to get one of the sugars.

8a           Daughter at back of house, underdog not half harassed (7)
HOUNDED – Put together an abbreviation for house, the first half of UNDErdog, and Daughter.

10a         Pointer about to be planted in country hill (9)
INDICATOR – An Asian country wrapped around one of the Latin abbreviations for ‘about’ or ‘approximately’, followed by a hill in Devon.

11a         Thomas is provided with French art books (5)
TOMES – The short form of Thomas, followed by the French for art, as in ‘thou art’.

12a         Egyptian phenomenon brings silence, then an exclamation (5)
MUMMY – A three-letter word for ‘silence’, as in ‘keep —‘, followed by a two-letter expression of surprise.

Image result for egyptian mummy

13a         Dramatist that could have nine jobs on — one must go (3,6)
BEN JONSON – Anagram (could have) of N(i)NE JOBS ON, with the I removed (one must go). The answer is a contemporary of Shakespeare, who wrote The Alchemist.

Image result for ben jonson

15a         Time to interrupt the French priest making speech? (7)
LECTURE – The French definite article and the French word for a parish priest, wrapped around Time.

17a         In investigation bad person falls (7)
CASCADE – An investigation by Sherlock Holmes, perhaps, or Inspector Morse, wrapped around a bad or dishonourable person.

Image result for cascades du herisson

18a         Good and exceptionally gentle, I repeatedly can be explosive (9)
GELIGNITE Good followed by an anagram (exceptionally) of GENTLE, I and I (I repeatedly).

20a         Singer Pat offers blessing for the listener (5)
BOONE – The surname of this singer from the 50s and 60s is a homophone (for the listener) of a blessing or favour.

ARVE Error: need id and provider

21a         Sarah operating in hairdressing establishment? (5)
SALON – A short form of Sarah followed by ‘operating’ or ‘powered up’.

23a         Bridge opponents in the home counties (5-4)
SOUTH-EAST – These two opponents at the bridge table are also the geographical location of the Home Counties.

24a         Nocturnal creatures flying around the French farm buildings (7)
STABLES – Reverse (around) some nocturnal flying creatures, then add the plural form of the definite article in French.

25a         After row was first to become peeved (7)
RANKLED – A row (of soldiers, perhaps) followed by ‘was first’ (in a race).


1d           Head of astrophysics acclaimed possibly in a university? (10)
ACADEMICAL – The first letter (head) of Astrophysics followed by an anagram (possibly) of ACCLAIMED.

2d           Sensitive Tory losing heart must suppress expression of pain (6)
TOUCHY – Remove the middle letters (losing heart) from T(or)Y, then wrap the result around a cry of pain.

3d           Happen to lead a board that is not invincible (8)
BEATABLE – A verb meaning ‘happen’ or ‘exist’ followed by A (from the clue) and the item of furniture sometimes known as a board.

4d           Ferryman takes companion forward, crossing a river (6)
CHARON – The answer is the mythical ferryman on the river Styx. The letters denoting a Companion of Honour and a two-letter word for ‘forward’ are placed either side of A (from the clue) and River,

5d           Performances around university? They have lots (8)
AUCTIONS University inserted into some performances or deeds gives us the some sales where lots are knocked down to the highest bidder.

ARVE Error: need id and provider

6d           A type of cheese not the first thing for man in garden (4)
ADAM – A (from the clue) followed by a Dutch cheese minus its first letter, giving us the male occupant of the Garden of Eden.

7d           Certain earth scientists sit awkwardly in various slimes and goos (13)
SEISMOLOGISTS – Anagram (various) of SLIMES and GOOS wrapped around another anagram (awkwardly) of SIT.

9d           Just unconcerned (13)
DISINTERESTED – Double definition, both really pointing to someone who has no preference or bias towards either side of an argument.

14d         Each boy appears in black fur in keeping with the time (10)
SEASONABLE – Put together an abbreviation for ‘each’ and a boy child, then insert the result into the black fur of a marten.

16d         Old city slowly pressing ahead as necessary? (8)
URGENTLY – The usual ancient city of the Chaldees followed by ‘slowly’ or ‘softly’.

17d         Report of people scrutinising country residence (8)
CHEQUERS – This is the Prime Minister’s country house. Its name sounds like (report of) people carrying out scrutinies.

Image result for chequers

19d         Take a stand at home over little relative beginning to transgress (6)
INSIST – Put together ‘at home’, a shortened form of a sibling, and the first letter (beginning) of Transgress

20d         Secure what is embedded in seat (6)
BEHIND – ‘Secure’ or ‘tie up’ wrapped around an exclamation like ‘What?’. No, you’re not getting an illustration of this!

22d         Boy admitting nothing or lots? (4)
LOAD – The letter which looks like a zero inserted into another word for ‘boy’.

The Quick Crossword pun BEAUX + THAIS = BOW TIES

59 comments on “DT 28652

  1. 3* / 3*. Enjoyable on the whole with clues of a wide range of difficulty. Fortunately I am old enough to know (and quite like) “Singer Pat” but I wonder if this is a fair clue for younger solvers?

    Shame about the typo in 17a and a couple of definitions seemed a bit unconvincing to me. Is 12a really a “phenomenon”? And, I don’t think “pressing ahead as necessary” defines the answer to 16d (even with the question mark).

    I’ll be interested to learn if Silvanus’ repetition radar bleeped regarding “the French” in 15a and 24a even though in the former it is part of “the French priest”.

    20d was my favourite and 9d was a splendid double definition.

    Many thanks to Giovanni and to DT.

      1. It seems incongrous now, but at a time when white Americans wouldn’t buy records by black artists, Pat Boone had a hit with a truly dreadful version of Fats Domino’s Ain’t that a Shame

        1. I never knew that Americans wouldn’t buy records by black artists but that doesn’t surprise me, considering the bigotry these days. I have to agree that is a truly, truly dreadful recording, who would buy that?

  2. Good morning everybody.

    Been getting on fine with this week’s Daily Telegraph puzzles but 14d eluded me today.


  3. All steadily solved with each pass filling a bit more of the grid and adding to the available checkers/Chequers. The puzzle took a little longer than usual but was all the more enjoyable for it. Who spotted the typo in 17ac or was it correct in your paper or online version? Thanks to Giovanniand thanks Deep Threat. Keep the hip groovy music coming DT. I love it.

  4. Always enjoy a Giovanni challenge and today was no exception. Nice combination of cryptology with a smattering of GK (likewise in the Quickie). West presented less resistance than the East. Thought 11a a bit contrived and stupidly failed to parse 20d. Fav was 5d once I had stopped looking for a plutocrat synonym. Thanks to the Don and DT. 👍

  5. This took a little longer than usual though on reflection I cannot see why. All in all a steady if unspectacular solve, with 20d once parsed my favourite. Fortunately, or unfortunately, I, too, can remember Pat Boone. Overall 3* /3* for me.

    Thanks to The Don and DT.

  6. Yet another very enjoyable end to the work week; slow progress in the SE slowed completion down to a fast canter – **/****.

    I had ‘vague’ memories of the 4d ferryman and had to confirm him with the BRB; then I began to wonder if the Don is the only setter to ‘use’ him.

    Candidates for favourite – 10a, 14d, and 17d – and the winner has to be the 17d homophone, although 14d was not far behind – a very good charade.

    Thanks to Giovanni and DT.

      1. Slower than a gallop, faster than a normal canter (since I am not a horsey person, I have no idea if a fast canter is even possible).

        1. I assumed that, having used horsey expressions, you were a horsey person….and you’re not!


          I’ve always loved your daily nods to the equine world but I relish them even more now.

          Trotting gallop…..Walking canter……Speedy trot….the list is endless…..or is it?

          Either way, yor der best.

  7. I gave this some concentrated attention which paid off. Dug 20a from somewhere, just.

    My favourite is 7d.

    Thanks to Giovanni and Deep Threat.

    Picture for 20d? If you 19d …

    1. In The Miffy cartoons by Dick Bruna The rabbits noses are a little cross just like the one in your picture Kitty. Unfortunately so are their bottoms.

  8. After a very slow start, this gradually gave in to me. 20d was a bung-in but I couldn’t parse it without DT’s help. Overall **** for me.

    Many thanks to Giovanni and DT.

  9. Steady start today but then slowed down considerably, eventually managed to complete in a reasonable time. 14d eluded me for quite some time which held things up . I too remember the singer ….
    Lots of good wordplay and enjoyable clues , favourite was 17d .
    Thanks to DT and Giovanni

  10. Friendly Giovanni again – I didn’t notice the typo but it was obvious what was intended so shouldn’t have held anyone up

    Thanks to Giovanni and DT too

  11. What a stinker! So many weird clues. For instance where is the ‘of that kind’ in 7a, how are you supposed to work out that art is an archaic word and then translate into French, why ‘certain’ in 7d, they are just earth scientists, there is no certain about it, why is 9d Just,why is Hi What in 20d?
    All clues were solvable if one ignored large parts of the clue.
    Very poor for one as elegant and precise as Giovanni.
    For me ****/*.
    Thx for the hints.

    1. I’m sure we have had “French art” meaning “es” before. I suspect our resident statistics maestro, Mr K, will be able to tell us when and which setter but my hunch is a previous Giovanni.
      The “certain” in 7d is to indicate that there are earth scientists other than the answer – e.g. geologists, meteorologists, geographers.

      1. The last three appearances on the back page of that form of art are:

           Sat 28 Mar 2015    DT 27761    French art links two fish — a point used in the main (7-5)
           Tue 15 Nov 2016    DT 28272    Grounds of Parisian art gallery (6)
           Mon 14 Aug 2017    DT 28505    One absconding from English undermining French art head (7)
  12. Like RD I was a little concerned about both 12a & 16d. The BRB definitions of the former seem to just about make it acceptable but I’m still in doubt over 16d.

    As usual, I hovered over whether to enter the cheese or the man into 6d – amazing how you can convince yourself either way.
    Smiled over 20a, anticipating the grumbles that might come from our younger solvers. All I can say to them is -have a go at today’s Toughie, where one of the clues calls for a ‘quartet of tech terms’. Some of us oldies struggled with that one!

    17a made my leader board along with 20d.

    Thanks to DG and to DT – nice to hear the auctioneer’s song again.

  13. A **\*** again. Didn’t parse 14a but it was a bung in. Some very poorly worded clues as mentioned above but over all an enjoyable puzzle.

  14. Went for a **/***, as I note DT has.
    Some clues took a bit of a liberty for me -like 20d,
    Failed to parse11a although the solution was apparent- thanks DT, excuse my French.
    I was looking for a female singer in 20a until the penny dropped -nice voice.
    Thanks to all, oval ball weekend should be good !

  15. An interesting puzzle that, for once, was light on religious references (as well as anagrams) but maintained the expected Friday General Knowledge quota.

    As RD suspected, my repetition radar did bleep with the two French articles being used, albeit one is singular and one plural. Like him and others, I wasn’t convinced about the definition in 16d, but I thought it was very appropriate indeed that 23a occupied that section of the grid. 4d revived memories of studying Virgil’s Aeneid for Latin A-Level many moons ago now.

    Favourite today was 1d, 20d took longer to parse than any other clue, but really shouldn’t have done.

    Many thanks to Giovanni and to Deep Threat, and a good weekend to all.

    1. Your favourite took me back to my childhood when Dad always listened to the football results on the radio. Hamilton **********s always seemed a very odd name for a football team.

      1. I think Scotland has a deeper-rooted tradition than England of naming sporting teams after educational establishments, it certainly is a more distinctive name than the usual United, City, Rovers etc.

        I still hope one day to hear the tongue-twister that is East Fife 4 Forfar 5!

        1. “Accrington Stanley… Exactly!” (Some sketch or advert aeons ago). Always loved that and still quote it in our household.

  16. An enjoyable end to a week of good puzzles. As mentioned by others a few clues needed taking with a pinch of salt but it didn’t detract from my enjoyment. Indeed I found the typo was more offputting. 17d my pick of the bunch. Thanks to the Don and DT.

  17. ***/****. Got there in the end but quite a bit of head scratching and pen sucking. My favourite was 9d – one of the best double definitions I’ve seen. Thanks to all. We have rain again today and look set to break records. In the last three months I think we’re above 80% wet. Can’t wait to walk the dogs 🐶🐶

  18. This is better for a Friday. I totally agree with RD but a little looseness in the running gear did not spoil the ride. The pair of 17s were my joint faves today.
    Off to have a listen to Boone croon.
    **/***. Thanks to Gio and DT

  19. A tricky solve for me and had to work hard to complete, definitely more than a ** star difficulty for this one. There was only one Pat (Boone) I could think of for the singer so that fell in nicely. Struggled in SE corner but once 14d was in the rest followed fairly quickly. Pleased to finish without using the hints and I thought a typical Giovanni Friday puzzle. Last in 2d just couldn’t figure that one for ages. Overall enjoyable and challenging.

    Clue of the day: 17d

    Rating: 3.5* / 3.5*

    Thanks to DT and Giovanni.

  20. The typo got me searching for something particularly clever and cryptic for a moment, but in the end I decided that no, it was just a typo, and finished in about ** time. Enjoyable as always on a Friday. Hope everyone has a good weekend! :-)

  21. Another highly entertaining puzzle from Giovanni. Lots of super clues again with 13a being my clue of the day. I also liked 3d & 7d which were just two of many which appealed to me. Thanks to both setter and DT.

  22. Slow to start on this one but a very skilful puzzle. I did find some difficult to parse but that is my weakness not that of the setter. Top two 14d and 17a. Last in were 20d which I did not particularly like (eh) and 25a. Thanks Giovanni, Deep Throat, and all bloggers for interesting comments (albeit predictable in some cases).

  23. Very enjoyable, but I did have to work hard for it.
    I remember 20a well, I thought he had a good voice.
    My fave was17d, pretty clever that.
    Thanks to Giovanni and Deep Threat, nice ending to the week.

  24. I had trouble with this too, Brian. Typo in 17a led me to “MISTAKE”. I know it didn’t fit, so had to come here for SE corner. Did get 20a, but not down !!! Suppose 17d was quite good, but didn’t even pick it out on “Chambers”. Getting too old, I fear.

  25. A bit of a struggle but got there in the end 😬 Favourites 17a closely pursued by 23a & 17d 😃 Big thanks to DT for a cracking blog ( no pun intended) and to Giovanni for a crackable puzzle 😳

  26. Got there in the end. Either side of a trip to the railway museum to see Mr Peakes Soyuz capsule. Still amazed 3 people could fit in it.

    The 17s a and d eluded me until I looked at the hints so tyvm to Mr Threat.

    I bunged in 20d but didn’t fully understand it til the hint enlightened me.

    4d 14d and 16d my fave clues today and the nod goes to 16d.

  27. I failed to solve 2 clues 20 A and 20 D , 20 A is just a poor clue, i couldn’t care less who Pat Boone is or was so stick to clues that are solvable by people that haven’t the time and inclination to research these things and 20 D is a bit stretched. Apart from that i enjoyed the puzzle.

    1. The clue is easily solved without knowing who Pat Boone was. There are always bound to be clues which are on unfamiliar territory to some of us. Our solvers in other countries rarely complain about peculiarly Ebglish clues and answers

  28. I found this tricky as usual for a Giovanni, and more of a *** difficulty rating for me. I am usually in a rush on Fridays which doesn’t help. On reflection clues weren’t that difficult, if you can just get on the right wavelength, but I definitely needed some of Deep Threat’s hints, thank you.

  29. Oh dear! Pat Boone didn’t bother me none! Much as I didn’t liked his music I hastily add….
    I thought Giovanni was being benign today. In fact all the crosswords so far this week have been on the gentle side.
    17a was my top clue and 2/3* overall.
    Thanks to Giovanni and to to DT for the review.

  30. “Pat Boone”. How old is the setter. We need to make these clus more relevant to today’s world if younger people are to take up the challenge of these puzzles. Lot’s of clues just reaked of “old person”.

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