DT 28667 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28667

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28667

Hints and tips by Mr K

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BD Rating  -  Difficulty *** Enjoyment ****


Hello, everyone.  Today's puzzle has quite an international flavour.  It takes us across Europe (where we exercise a few foreign words), through the Middle East, over to Canada and the US, then Down Under (where we catch up on the news), and finally back to a town in Berkshire.  Filling the grid today was not too bad, but parsing presented a few rewarding challenges.  In my book that's good for an extra enjoyment star.

There's a new survey posted on the home page, consisting mostly of questions suggested by blog readers.  Please take a few minutes to fill it out once you're done here.

In the hints below definitions are underlined and most indicators are italicized.  Clicking on the buttons will reveal the answers.  In some hints hyperlinks provide additional explanation or background.  Clicking on a picture will usually enlarge it or reveal a bonus illustration.  Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.



1a    Maker of furniture  stripper? (11)
CHIPPENDALE:  A double definition.  The surname of Thomas the 18th century English furniture maker is also a member of a well-known troupe of male strippers

7a    PM in front of bar, focal point for dancers (7)
MAYPOLE:  The current Prime Minister is followed by (in front of) a bar or stick

8a    A short study released about American modeller (7)
TUSSAUD:  Form an anagram (released) of A from the clue and STUDY without its last letter (short …), and then put that about an abbreviation for American.  The modeller of the answer famously worked in wax.

10a   Courtyard  nearby (5)
CLOSE:  A straightforward double definition

11a   Meeting with candidate at work, perhaps -- brief session to contend with (9)
INTERVIEW:  Concatenate a short word that could (perhaps) mean at work, all but the last letter (brief) of a session within the school year (for example), to contend or to compete, and the abbreviation for with.  If you're like me and didn't find the first part of that construction leaping out at you, this sentence where the short word can be substituted might help:  Is the boss at work today?

12a   Policeman in charge intercepting tender (7)
OFFICER:  The abbreviation for in charge is inserted in (intercepting) a tender or proposal

14a   Transport from French match? (7)
DELIGHT:  From in French, and a synonym of match (as in "Got a match?")

15a   Cooking career involves little time for one in an associated profession? (7)
CATERER:  An anagram (cooking) of CAREER containing the physics symbol for time (involves little time) gives a worker in a profession associated with cooking

18a   Available in pharmacy, an ideal poison (7)
CYANIDE:  The answer is hiding in (available in) the rest of the clue.

20a   Agent recalled earlier entertainer (9)
PERFORMER:  The reversal (recalled) of a short word for a sales agent, followed by an adjective meaning earlier

21a   A German article about large tree (5)
ALDER:  A from the clue and a German definite article sandwich (about) the clothing abbreviation for large

22a   Hold crushed tin can, nothing inside (7)
CONTAIN:  An anagram (crushed) of TIN CAN, with the letter that looks like zero (nothing) placed inside

23a   Charge mischievous child brought before a head (7)
IMPEACH:  Crosswordland's usual mischievous child precedes (brought before) a word meaning a head (as in this example:  Tickets are £10 a head)

24a   Scheduled for discussion with regard to Melbourne newspaper and changes (2,3,6)
ON THE AGENDA:  Put together a short word for "with regard to", a Melbourne newspaper, and an anagram (changes) of AND.  I'd never heard of the newspaper, so a quick Google verification was in order after reverse engineering it from the wordplay and the answer



1d    Keen to run over and cause unnecessary alarm (3,4)
CRY WOLF:  Keen or wail, and the reversal (over) of run (like a river, for example)

2d    Combined pub drinking round with eating, initially (2,3)
IN ONE:  A synonym of pub containing (drinking) the round letter, and followed by the first letter of Eating (with eating, initially)

3d    Prime minister's first night finished early (7)
PREMIER:  The first night of a play or a film, with its last letter deleted (finished early)

4d    Written using symbols -- indefinite number to date misinterpreted? (7)
NOTATED:  Start with the usual letter that can represent an indefinite number in mathematics, and append an anagram (misinterpreted) of TO DATE

5d    A lake in European country, one of the largest countries (9)
AUSTRALIA:  Insert A from the clue and the map abbreviation for lake in a European country famous for, among other things, waltzing and chocolate cake

6d    Steering clear of five in Berkshire town right from the start (7)
EVADING:  Take a large Berkshire town located on the Thames, delete the abbreviation for right from the start, and insert the Roman numeral for five in what's left

7d    Tiny policeman in comic is swimming across river (11)
MICROSCOPIC:  Put an informal word for policeman inside an anagram (swimming) of IN COMIC.  Then wrap that lot around (across) the map abbreviation for river

9d    With poverty around, have tofu with 50% off -- that's practical (4-2-5)
DOWN-TO-EARTH:  Have or possess and one half (50% off) of TOFU, with poverty or shortage wrapped around

13d   Part of plant or insect or bird (9)
CORMORANT:  Stick together an underground part of a plant, OR from the clue, and our favourite worker insect.  As with the newspaper, the plant part was gettable from the wordplay and the answer, but I had to verify him afterwards

16d   Wrong to keep working over in Canadian city (7)
TORONTO:  A legal wrong contains (to keep) our usual short word for working or operational, with the cricket abbreviation for over following

17d   Story about entertaining Gulf state clubs (7)
ROMANCE:  A usual short word for about or concerning wrapped around (entertaining) both a Gulf State and the playing card abbreviation for clubs

18d   Line breaks making better game (7)
CURLING:  The abbreviation for line is inserted in (breaks) making better or healing

19d   Knight goes on hunting goddess to support single state (7)
INDIANA:  Put the chess abbreviation for a knight before (on, in a down clue) the Roman goddess of hunting.  All that goes after (to support, in a down clue) the Roman numeral for one (single)

21d   Tree we see while followed by swan (5)
ASPEN:  Place a female swan after a short synonym of while, and you'll see that you've made a tree whose leaves quiver in the wind


Thanks to today’s setter for a fun solve.  I liked the misleading surface in 18d, and I enjoyed the forest formed down in the SE.  But the top clues for me today were those with a little intricacy in the wordplay:  11a, 23a, 2d, and 9d.  Which clues did you like best?


The Quick Crossword pun:  STARE+WEIGH=STAIRWAY

62 comments on “DT 28667

  1. Not much of a challenge today beginning with R& W in the East. A lighter moment came with 1a which was a bung-in but with help re the stripper(s) became my Fav. Thank you Mysteron and Mr. K.

  2. Thanks Mr K for setting me straight with 21a. I went for the national emblem of Lebanon. This threw me for 21d. Cheers 🦇

    1. Me too. Spent a while considering whether capon could be a swan! Until,the notes turned cedar into alder.

  3. Well I really struggled to get this one going, with only a couple solved out of the first ten or so attempted, but then the floodgates opened and it very soon fell in ** time.

    1a reminds me of an occasion when I found myself besieged in a hotel just outside Edinburgh, with about 300 screaming women hammering on the locked doors and windows. Inside were the 1a. One burst into tears when presented with a birthday cake, two others threw a hissy fit at the manager because their double room contained two single beds.

    1a is therefore COTD.

    Many thanks to Mysteron and Mr.K.

        1. Well I asked for that didn’t I? An amusing tale though, sounds like a nightmare of an evening – definitely a time to lie low!

          1. Actually, no, it was a right laugh. Some people left the bar because they “didn’t approve” but those who stayed had their drinks paid for the rest of the night. No use going to bed, couldn’t have slept because of the screaming women outside.

  4. Started off with a smile when I twigged 1a, probably my favourite too and a steady solve from there in.
    As Mr K says a puzzle with an international flavour which I really enjoyed and going for a **/****
    Like others I suspect, I had to guess the newspaper but the answer was obvious .
    thanks Mr K for the blog picks-13d are becoming a pest-saw one this morning preening itself on Christleton pond near Chester-well I ask you.

  5. I didn’t enjoy this very much. Don’t like ‘released’ as an anagram indicator and the Melboune newspaper is a very obscure bit of general knowledge. I don’t many solvers will have heard of it. Thanks Mr K for explaining a few that needed parsing.

    1. I think released is OK (though quite rare, I think) as an anagram indicator. It’s telling you to release/set free/liberate the letters A STUD from their conventional, given order into a different sequence. But what do I know…

    2. I lived in Melbourne for a while and remember The Age with fondness. A quality Australian newspaper. …no, not an oxymoron!

  6. Pleasant crossword. It’s not often I would rate a puzzle easier than Mr K, but this was 1.5*/**** for me today. Wavelength thing, I suppose – it won’t last. I liked 1a, and 23a with top spot to 8a.

  7. 2* / 4*. This was very enjoyable and, being slightly unusual, I did wonder if it was the handiwork of last Tuesday’s Mr Newman?

    I’d never heard of the Melbourne newspaper in 24a, and I needed Mr K’s help to parse 8a & 11a fully but nevertheless all three answers were readily solvable.

    9d was my favourite.

    Many thanks to the setter and to Mr K.

    P.S. I see our esteemed new editor is keeping himself busy appearing as Samuel in today’s Toughie slot. I’ll tackle that one later.

  8. Love the survey, Mr K, especially the Spoonerism question. Hilarious.

    Is it one of your bugbears or are you a fan of Speverend Rooner and his work?

  9. Enjoyable enough today. As somebody has already said, some of the puzzles have a ‘new’ flavour of late, it is nice to have a change sometimes. Liked the Ikea cartoon.

  10. Loved this one. Like a nice wine, refreshing and vibrant and also relatively contemporary, which is a bit of a bug bear of mine with some setters.

  11. 1.5* /4* from me for this fun-filled puzzle. A good range of clue types added to the enjoyment,and 9d was my clear favourite, with 24a in second place.

    Thanks to the Tuesday setter and Mr K. Off to do the survey now.

  12. Not sure whether I like the theme or not so I will reserve judgment on that one. On first look I thought it was going to be obscure and or difficult. However I found it all fell into place very quickly – completing the bottom before the top. There were one or two I did not fill in until I had more checkers to make sure. For example I would not think of the answer to 10a as a synonym for courtyard. My favourites were 1 and 7a and 3 and 13d. Took me a while to get 7a – never thought of an up to date PM. Do not think there should be any complaints about 1a – as those who do not know the streakers should know the furniture maker and vice versa. Last ones in were 6d and 8a. All completed without assistance but enjoyed Mr K’s hints . I learned something also – the alternative meaning of the first word in 1d. Thanks setter.

  13. I enjoyed this and wouldn’t be at all surprised if RD is correct in his attribution of authorship.

    Thought 18d was rather topical in light of the most recent Olympic drug-testing results. Tom Bradby (my favourite news presenter) could hardly control his mirth last night over the unlikely need for 18d competitors to utilise performance enhancing drugs!

    Didn’t know the Melbourne newspaper but the answer was so obvious that I didn’t feel obliged to do the research before filling in the little spaces.

    1a made me smile but top spot was taken by 13d – nicely done.

    Thanks to Mr Ron (Newman?) and to Mr K for the blog – I thought the depiction of 23a was very clever and the chimera cat was fascinating.

    Off to fill in the survey now………..

  14. All over rather quickly but still had a bit of a sparkle. 1a made me smile. 7a brought back memories of schooldays. Not good ones. The whole class was put through purgatory every summer. Strangely enough we didn’t seem to mind Scottish country dancing during the winter. Thank you setter and Mr Kitty. Weird cat in 2d.

  15. A straightforward grid fill today but the parsing took a wee bit longer. An enjoyable puzzle overall in my opinion.

    Thanks to Mr K and setter 1.5*/3.5*

  16. I enjoyed parsing the clues in this crossword but needed Mr K’s help with 11a. Also completed bottom half first but filled in the rest at a steady pace, overall 2.5*/4*. I am now going to learn the local newspaper name for every city in the world, just in case. Thank you to the setter and Mr K, loved the Ikea cartoon.

  17. I found this one very straightforward/mild, but quite enjoyable. That’s about as enthusiastic I can get, I’m afraid. 1.5* / 2.5*.

    PS. Mr K, your Survey 3 – hope you’re not trying to instigate a vendetta against the Spooner clue? And on that note, may I introduce a new clue type – the Malapropism clue: Volatile, but possibly foolproof to Sheridan’s Mrs (11). Think it’ll catch on? :-).

    1. PPS. How come my basic smiley face there at the end hasn’t automatically transformed into a proper yellow emoticon after posting, like it normally does?

  18. Filled in while waiting for the girls to start their Curling match. The grid filled quickly (What else could 1d and 7d be? The answer’s were obvious from the checkers without reading the clues). I have now read through the clues to work out the parsings and found more bung ins from definition only. Definitely a friendly grid. If I had not been rushing I would have properly solved as I went. Thanks to the setter, thanks to Mr K and thanks to Eva and co.

  19. Must be a avelength thing as I found this totally R&W.
    Quite fun but over very quick.
    For me */**
    Thx to all

  20. Don’t have time to read this properly, will do so later when I fill out the survey.
    Very enjoyable, south easy peasy but north gave more of a struggle.
    My fave was 23a if only for the pic; how I wish.
    Only knew the carpenter at 1a, not the strippers.
    Thanks to our Tuesday setter and Mr. Kitty for his, as always, educational review.

      1. Or even read Emily Maitlis’ article/photograph from Las Vegas in The Times today which enlightened me even more about the stripper(s) in 1a. 🤭

  21. **/****. Very enjoyable solve but wish it had lasted a bit longer as I’m suffering jet lag and can’t sleep. Thanks to the setter and Mr K for the review.

  22. Despite being very under the weather today, completed this relatively easily; needed the hint for 23A to parse the second part.

  23. Great puzzle and for me fairly straightforward, full of super clues from start to finish. Agree with others that some clues were difficult to parse, with a few I had the answer before being able to parse it. Guess that’s the way it is sometimes. No issues with the puzzle good fun and very enjoyable. Last in 17d that did cause a delay.

    Clues of the day: 13d a fabulous clue, follwed by 8a.

    Rating ** / ****

    Thanks to Mr K and the setter.

  24. The excellent quality of the surfaces on display made this puzzle very pleasing to solve.

    My top two were 1d and 13d.

    Many thanks to today’s setter and to Mr K. Well done on including another survey, I look forward with great interest to seeing the results once made available.

  25. Far too many bung-ins to be enjoyable so very grateful for Mr.K’S hints.
    A rare post from me due to the block on the site. Hope all ok with everyone.
    Thanks all

  26. Interesting puzzle **/*** 😳 Not exactly my ☕️ Favourites were 7 & 13 down Thanks to Mr K and to the setter 😜

  27. The troupe that Mr K describes as well known in 1a was one we had never heard of and needed a quick Google to confirm but as compensation, the Melbourne paper was one that we knew. Plenty to enjoy and keep us smiling.
    Thanks Mr Ron and Mr K.

    1. I’d imagined that the 1a troupe tours all over the world because I feel like I see them advertised on billboards everywhere.

      1. It is my understanding that there is more than one troupe. They are on stage every night 365/365 in Vegas, plus plenty of other venues around the world.

  28. I was very disappointed with 1a’s illustration .
    A nice handy little puzzle.
    Thanks to Mr K and to the setter.

        1. It’s not advertised in an obvious way, but occasional bonus pics have been a feature of the Tuesday blogs for a little while. Last Tuesday every picture had a bonus feline partner. Also, clicking on pictures with small text, such as cartoons, will usually enlarge them to make the text more legible.

  29. Wow, great smugness today on completing this one with no help whatsoever. Then I opened the blog and was even more pleased to see the *** difficulty rating. As Brian said above, I guess it was a wavelength thing today. Loved it. Perhaps my brain is finally maturing. Better late than never 😊

  30. An odd looking grid with some quite isolated corners – something I thought was going to cause me real issues in the SW corner – but I finished at the close comfortably within * time. Enjoyable throughout, as ever.

  31. A pretty good crossword today. It didn’t require too much cogitation but it was fun while it lasted. 6d was my top clue; overall 1.5/3*
    Thanks to Mr Newman and Mr K for the review.

    1. Welcome to the blog, John.

      Not sure what is confusing about 7d, so I’ll just explain it all in more detail than is given in the hint above. The definition is “tiny”. The answer is under the Click here button. Find it by inserting COP (policeman) into an anagram (swimming) of COMIC IS, and then inserting R (abbreviation for river) elsewhere in that collection of letters. Does that help?

  32. Work has meant I started on this one very late. I have to say I did not rate it. Some clues were very good like 18d and others pretty awful like 6d which were clunky, wordy lego clues. **/*. Quite honestly it was a bit of a donkey lacking subtlety, humour and a consistent style.

  33. **/* for me. Like Patsyann above, there are some terrible clues. Aussie newspaper? Others poorly worded and clunky.

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