DT 28676 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28676


Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28676

Hints and tips by Deep Threat

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Good morning from South Staffs, where icy winds continue to blow, but we don’t actually have a huge amount of snow.

Giovanni has been into his book of long words today, culminating in a 24-letter anagram leading to a two-word answer. But the cluing will enable solvers to tease out the answers without too much trouble.

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. 


1a           This writer’s in garden, sitting in place, settling down (13)
SEDIMENTATION – A short form of ‘this writer is’, with the Old Testament garden from which Adam and Eve were ejected wrapped around it, then a word for ‘place’ or ‘situation’ wrapped around the result.

Image result for sedimentation

9a           According to story, Dorothy and Albert are hiding behind a complex near Birmingham (9)
ANECDOTAL – Put together A (from the clue), the initials of an exhibition complex near Birmingham, a shortened form of ‘Dorothy’, and a shortened form of ‘Albert’.

10a         Animal and bird in the borders of Labrador (5)
LEMUR – A large flightless bird with the first and last letters (borders) of LabradoR placed either side.

Image result for lemur

11a         Ultimately bored by issue, resign (5)
DEMIT – The final letter of boreD, followed by ‘issue (from)’ or ‘send out’.

12a         King in humble abode distressed (4)
HURT – A small, primitive, dwelling wrapped around the Latin abbreviation for king.

13a         Family member recovering finally managed (4)
GRAN – The last letter of recoverinG, followed by ‘managed’ or ‘organised’.

15a         Slated sort of building, dry inside, with colourful exterior (7)
ROASTED – A building used for drying hops or malt, with one of the primary colours wrapped around it.

Image result for oast house

17a         English bishop with a twitch, uncertain in action (7)
ERRATIC – Put together English, the abbreviated form of address for a bishop, A (from the clue) and a nervous twitch.

18a         Support member in fight (4,3)
BEAR OUT – A fight, such as a boxing match, wrapped around a body part.

20a         Return journey is a hit (4,3)
HOME RUN – This is a big hit in baseball, or a return to one’s starting point.

ARVE Error: need id and provider

21a         Some bag-handler employed by military leader (4)
AGHA – Hidden in the clue is a Turkish commander.

22a         Dad at home, someone hard to deal with? (4)
PAIN – Another short word for ‘Dad’, followed by ‘at home’.

23a         Traffic in rush around England’s capital (5)
TRADE – Reverse (around) another word for ‘rush’ or ‘move quickly’, then add the first letter of England.

26a         Chemical in multiple steroids (5)
ESTER – Hidden in the clue.

27a         Cover briefly taken by fellow who is a rebel? (9)
INSURGENT – Remove the final letter (briefly) from a verb for ‘take financial cover’, then add a fellow who may also be a toff.

28a         Remark about quiet skill shown by a learner in different categories (13)
COMPARTMENTAL – A remark (like the ones which will appear below this blog) wrapped around the musical symbol for quiet and a skill, followed by A (from the clue) and Learner.


1d           Norm, uncouth fellow meeting Her Majesty as leading figure (8-6)
STANDARD-BEARER – Another word for a norm, followed by a rough chap, possibly grizzly (or polar in this weather) and the regnal cipher of our monarch.

Image result for standard bearer

2d           Small drink with energy content that you may get at night time (5)
DREAM – A wee drink of whisky with Energy inserted.

3d           See 8 Down

4d           Something jagged may be observed outside church (7)
NOTCHED – Another word for ‘observed’ or ‘saw’, wrapped around an abbreviation for CHurch.

5d           Enjoying freedom from jail in general (2,5)
AT LARGE – Another way of saying ‘in general’, especially when prefixed by ‘the world’, which could also describe someone let out of jail.

6d           Troubles with ledge beginning to fall down (4)
ILLS – Another word for a window ledge, with the first letter falling to the bottom.

7d           One is on top of something learned about in maths class (9)
NUMERATOR – When you learned about vulgar fractions at school, this was the bit above the line.

8d           and 3 Down: Dad and intercontinental mates transformed by this spiritual exercise (14,10)

14d         Expression of annoyance about graduate with desire to become playwright (10)
DRAMATURGE – Wrap a mild exclamation of annoyance around a higher degree, then add a desire or drive.

16d         Indifferent when name comes up at the end of a course (9)
APATHETIC – Start with A (from the clue) and another word for a course of travel, then add the reverse (comes up) of a verb for ‘name’ or ‘quote’.

19d         Russian royal once treating artisan badly (7)
TSARINA – Anagram (treating … badly) of ARTISAN.

Image result for tsarina

20d         Workers out of this world making telephone item (7)
HANDSET – Some factory workers followed by an abbreviation for someone or something not of this world.

24d         Head off right at the end of avenue (5)
AVERT – An abbreviation for ‘avenue’ followed by an abbreviation for ‘right’.

25d         Concert supporting male (4)
PROM – ‘Supporting’ or ‘in favour of’, followed by Male.

The Quick Crossword pun PURRS + WADERS = PERSUADERS

67 comments on “DT 28676

  1. Well I’ll be blowed. On Wednesday I (and several others) considered 1d as a 14 letter two word answer which was in fact wrong. Now it shows up two days later as a correct answer. How weird is that?
    Mr K will probably be relieved to know that I won’t set him the challenge of trying to find out when that last happened, particularly as I’d be seriously worried if he knew all the wrong answers I’d ever thought of.

    My rating for today’s puzzle, which I found a bit verbose and rather lacking in humour, is 2* / 2.5*.

    11a & 14d were new words for me which had me reaching for my BRB, but both were readily derivable from the wordplay.

    Thanks to Giovanni and to DT.

    1. Thanks, RD. My psychic powers only go so far, but I can tell you that words which were not answers two days previously do show up quite frequently ;)

  2. Our snow hasn’t gone yet and this morning we have the delight of what the weather forecasters promised would be freezing rain – our kitchen windows look like frosted bathroom windows where the raindrops have frozen solid.

    Friendly Giovanni today – interesting to have 1d today after him being a ‘wrong’ answer the other day

    Thanks to Giovanni for the crossword and DT for the explanations.

    1. Snap! You and RD made the same comment at exactly the same time. How weird is that?

      1. I was going to speak to Sue about us entering a synchronised commenting competition.

        1. We could enter the best decorated pedant’s hat competition too.

          East facing windows all still looking like frosted glass as in the photo, and now it’s snowing again :(

        1. Take it to your local church and tell them it’s the Kent version of the Turin Shroud. Could be money in it??

  3. First scan revealed lots of’ long words’, I found myself guessing the solutions then fitting these with the clues!
    Agree with DT’S **/***.
    Like RD, 11a and 14d were new words.
    Overall not taxing and fitted the bill for a Friday, liked the wordplay of 9a.
    Thanks setter and DT, not much snow in Cheshire as usual-must be the gap.

  4. Apart from the two new words at 11a and 14d, which were what they had to be from the wordplay, this was straightforward enough although perhaps lacking The Don’s customary sparkle. I liked the lurking 26a and overall this was 2* /3* for me.

    Thanks Giovanni and DT.

    1. Ditto from me, except I found it perhaps a little more mundane ** / **
      Many thanks to DG & DT

  5. Thanks to Giovanni for the puzzle and to DT for the review.
    Does anyone else find 4d a bit odd? What’s the ‘something’ doing there? If it’s part of the definition then it’s defining a noun whereas the answer is an adjective. I see that DT has just underlined the ‘jagged’ which works as the definition but doesn’t really take account of the ‘something’.

    1. I agree on 4d. I started by thinking that the answer was a ‘something,’ i.e. a noun, but I had enough checkers to be able to get the adjectival answer with a furrowed brow about the way the clue was written.

  6. Another very good end to the work week, perhaps not quite as enjoyable as recent Fridays, completed at a fast gallop – **/***.

    Favourite – a toss-up between 20a and 7d – and the winner is 7d.

    Thanks to Giovanni and DT.

  7. I strarted making a note of my favourite clues and after noting so many I decided that pretty much all of them were good ones. I had 3 & 8 sorted in my mind immediately on reading the clue, but 14d gets my vote as its a new word learned. Very soon solved but at the same time most enjoyable too. Thanks to Giovanni and DT.

  8. Struggled a bit with 1ac and 1d. and some of the ones off them but all finished in good time. 14d took a bit of working out. I couldn’t think of an expression of annoyance despite seeing it so often before. As for that chaps toes in the picture at 1ac – they need looking at. See you all on Monday. Play nicely

  9. I stared at a blank canvas for quite sometime but then surprised myself by actually making the grade in the end. Stupidly failed to parse 6d so it was a bung-in as was 27a. Thankfully clue to 8/3d so obvious it was unnecessary to hassle with a long anagram. Altogether a pleasant challenge as was the Quickie which provided an addition for my vocabulary in 20a (thanks Mr. Google). No outstanding Fav to nominate but plenty of near ones. TVM Giovanni and DT.

  10. Oh dead. Needed some help for this one. (15a , 18a, 14d, 16d)

    Did anyone know the word at 14d without looking it up?
    Has it come up before?

    Thanks to Deep Threat and to the setter.

    1. ref 14d Yes and don’t know but I expect there’s a man who’ll come up with a few examples in due course

        1. Its one of those words that make you smile when you imagine a playwright having an urge for drama :)

          1. I’m not sure the expression I had on my face when I looked it up was a smile, more of a “well how about that!”

    2. Hi Ora. 14d doesn’t appear in my copy of either the Telegraph or Guardian databases, though they’re a year old now. I searched this site for good measure and the only hit other than today was this comment by Framboise.

      Searching 225 uncovered a single occurrence: in this FT crossword – by, guess who!

      1. Thank you for all your searching.

        Hoping that this word will now ‘stick’ as I bet it will reappear!

        1. Hi, Ora. I did know the word from somewhere, but I can’t remember where.

          It doesn’t appear in any of my databases, which cover all of the Telegraph, Guardian, and Indy puzzles available online. Looks like today is the first appearance of that word on the back page since at least 2001.

    3. Yes, I was indeed aware of the word (but spelt without the ‘e’) and in fact I recently attended a symposim at which the speaker referred to that as being his erstwhile responsibility at Welsh National Opera.

  11. No..I hadn’t heard of14d either, but it had to be from the clue.
    Obviously my favourite was13a! There’s been a bit of a literary theme this week I think.

  12. Doable and a bit educational. To balance that out, later I shall attempt something impossible and learn absolutely nothing in the process.

    Thanks to Giovanni and Deep Threat.

  13. Oh, the mention above of the FT crossword has reminded me that they’re now available interactively online. (They have been for a while actually but were only sporadically updated. Now they are publicising them so I expect they’ll be kept current.) Found here.

  14. I enjoyed this one. 3d& 8d were my first in . I struggled with 28a. Obvious when I eventually got it. Have a good w/end fellow solvers & keep,safe/ warm if you are snowed in. Very slight thaw in SE Surrey.

  15. I thought this was quite tricky.
    8d&3d went straight in which made a great start.
    1a held me up for ages, once that went in, the picture cleared.
    Last in was 15a as the ‘dry building’ eluded me.
    I need to check the parsing of 1d, 6d, 7d, 24d
    COTD was 27a.
    New words 11a and 14d.
    Thanks all.

  16. Let’s try again….
    I took a while to get going today but once I did and the brain was in gear everything slotted together quite smoothly. 11a I had to check and recognition of 14d came from the deep in my subconscious somehow.
    9a was my top clue and 3/3.5* overall.
    Thanks to Giovanni and to DT for the review.

  17. Well – It took a couple of hours (on and off – I am at work) to finally get there – 14d is not in my vocabulary but guessed it then checked.
    No bad for a Friday – almost enjoyable

  18. As with yesterday’s puzzle, four long clues helped with establishing a foothold, followed by a steady completion of the remainder of the grid. I did need to consult the BRB to get comfortable with 18a’s member. No standout favourite, but I did quite like 6d for its misdirection. Thanks to Giovanni and to DT.

  19. Interesting. In the android version. the clue for 8d looks like it starts “& 3 Dad” and as the number of letters shown was only 14 It did not occur to me that 3d was part of the answer. The anagram therefore did not make sense. So not doing 8d until I had all the checking letters and then looking at 3d. I though hello that’s not cryptic. So please online T’graph make sure the subscribers edition is correct. This added an unnecessary difficulty to a not terribly interesting crossword, – together with the two unknown words. So thanks DT for the blog, without it I would have been none the wiser.

    1. I seldom use the android version (unusably slow on my device, which is fairly old but still runs other apps perfectly) but I see (1d) that it still has the problem of rendering (x-y) enumerations as (x,y).

  20. Should have been at least *** for difficulty. I have never heard of a

  21. As with lots of you 14d was a new word to me , likewise 11a, but both could be worked out from the wordplay. Struggled with 1a, which was my last one in, I kept looking to end it with “ing” which held me up with 7d, although once the penny dropped this gave me the last letter of 1a and I finally got there.
    This was definitely one that I had to put down and then come back to several times.
    Thanks to Giovanni and DT

  22. Not outrageously obscure today, except for 11a and 14d, for which I used electronic help. I’ll try to store for future use.
    I solved 8d/3d immediately, what else could it be, so that was a great help.
    I only got 1a from the checking letters, thank goodness it was correct.
    Thanks to Giovanni and to Deep Threat. Please keep warm all of you.

  23. Frozen brain has exacerbated my usual Friday trouble – way more than 2* difficulty for me, probably more than 3* too.
    Had it not been for the very long and obvious anagram at 8/3d I’m not sure that I’d ever have got off the ground.
    I’ve either never met or, more likely, have forgotten 11a and 14d but they weren’t too tricky to guess and look up.
    Spent too long trying to make 9a an anagram of something because I thought complex could be the indicator – wrong again.
    I didn’t think any clues stood out particularly.
    Thanks to Giovanni and to DT.
    Snowing again – off to light fire and see if I can find last weekend’s crosswords as didn’t have time to do them.

  24. Strange how some anagrams become immediately obvious – certainly seems to have been the case for most of us today with the 8/3 combo.
    In company with others, I didn’t know either 11a or 14d but the wordplay got me there before checking in the BRB. Must admit that I didn’t know the 26a chemical either – thank goodness it was a lurker!

    Think 9a was my favourite although I quite liked the image conjured up by 17a as well.

    Thanks to DG and to DT for the blog.

    Still free of the white stuff here but the Siberian wind is colder than ever today.

  25. A lot of common ground it seems today, 11a and 14d were new words for me as well, and the glass in several of my windows has become “frosted” from the freezing rain like CS’s much further to the east. I can’t ever recall that particular phenomenon before.

    Giovanni in fairly benign mood today, and thankfully giving us a week off from any ecclesiastical obscurities. My favourite clue was 15a.

    Many thanks to Mr Manley and to DT and a good weekend to all. I, for one, can’t wait for the promised thaw to begin over the next few days, although no sign of it at the moment!

  26. A good puzzle with a nice mix of clues. Didn’t really know 1a and that was a bit of a “bung in.” Started really slowly but all coming together quickly at the end. Last in 21a a lurker missed that suddenly jumped out at me. Not a piece of cake to complete today, but just about right to really enjoy it. Look forward to the prize puzzle tomorrow.

    Clues of the day: 1d / 9a

    Rating *** / ****

    Thanks to DT and Giovanni

  27. Nice Friday fare but tricky in parts ergo **/*** 😬 I was another who did not remember seeing 11a & 14d before 🤔 Favourites 10a, 9a, 2d & 16d (sorry Kath couldn’t decide!) Thanks to DT and to Giovanni. Enough snow now 🌨☃️

  28. **/***. A bit of a slog today with few smiles. 7d was my favourite. Thanks to the setter and DT. A balmy 10C yesterday unlike the UK. Keep warm.

  29. I had a love/ hate relationship with this one today. Good job it was a snow day. I was unbeleavably slow at the start, and had to come back to it several times through the day. I did manage to finish without help and then had a great sense of satisfaction that I’d actually got through it. Some of the clues were so long it took me ages to work out the definitions and to break the clues down. Thank you Giovanni for keeping me busy today and thank you Deep Threat for the review.

  30. I found this to be on the tricky side, probably *** for difficulty. The LHS in particular gave me some problems. The particularly long anagram didn’t, as I just got it from the definition and enumeration, fortunately, otherwise I might still have been solving now. :-) Satisfying to finish, as the Don’t puzzles always are, easy or hard.

  31. Well, I believe that I can happily announce that I did know 14d – albeit solely on account of Private Eye having repeatedly labelled the late Kenneth Tynan as ‘the well known dramaturd’ (sic)!

  32. The last letter added to the end of 14d caused a bit of confusion as I only knew the answer spelt without it. BRB soon sorted that. Pleasant solve.
    Thanks Giovanni and DT.

  33. One word – 11a – l have never come across, but guessed it correctly from the clue and crosses. 1*/3.5*. Little ticks of approval against 1a, 9a, 15a and 7d. Thanks to the Don and DT.

  34. Worked on this during easier-than-expected drive south to home from Brigsteer, nr Kendal, which has been snow-covered and beautiful all week. Found the clues difficult tho’ filled in 8d and 3d at first sight…..weird ! Definitely a 3.5/3* for me today . Never heard of 14d despite spending 3 years studying Eng. Lit. at Uni. many decades ago ! 1a was last one in, too……….

  35. 11a and 14d were new to me but I eventually got them after checking they were actual words.

    It was 15a that defeated me. I have heard of an oast house, but had no idea what went on inside. Hopefully I will remember for next time. A simple clue when you know!

    I was also not sure about 4 down – not getting 15a didn’t help, but I was still dubious about having the right answer.

    For 18a, I didn’t realise member could be basically any part of the body. Another lesson learned! I got the answer, but was unsure how it was right.

  36. 4 down, 12 across and 18 across answers are very poor matches to the clues.

    1. I admit that I winced at 12ac and thought members were arms or legs at 18ac. 4d was one of my later solves.but the clues all do their jobs and I solved them all. There must be a better description than poor which is both unkind to the setter and the editor. Thanks for commenting though.

  37. Late on parade today. Two new words, 11a and 14d, and smiled at coincidence of 1d which some of us erroneously wanted to use earlier this week. Rabbit Dave summed it all up in his first comment above.

  38. Only circled 9a and 1d for special mention. Bit of a funny one but quicker to finish than anticipated. Did not know 11a but easy to get. Took me a while to get 14d. Wondered at first if it was the name of a playwright. When I had built up the answer and googled the word I could hardly believe it. Made a silly mistake with 23a. Of the long clues the 8/3 combo was the easiest and a write in followed by 1d which we either see or think we see from time to time. Not a normal Giovanni I have to say (not a criticism). Thanks all. Haven’t seen anything from Brian so perhaps taking a sabbatical as promised.

  39. Had the advantage here on 14d. We wouldn’t call a playwright anything else.
    15a and 4d were my last ones in as I was trying to put TT for dry inside a slated building and assuming there was a word for having a colourful exterior.
    Same problem with 18a as I started with Bra for the support and hoping to find a 4 letter member ending in out. D’oh.
    7d was another strange one. Thought it was dominator whereas the mathematical term I was thinking of was denominator. Double d’oh.
    The long anagram just jumped at me with only 2 checkers.
    Loved the little story in 9a.
    Thanks to Giovanni and to DT.

  40. It was snowing in N E Hants and for some reason we could think of nothing more productive to do than take the dog across white fields to the pub. I handed Mrs Pascal the Daily Mail whilst I folded up the pub copy to tackle the DT back-page. I had only four or five answers in before she had finished reading and I had to make pollute conversation. The next chance I had was between 3 and 4 in the morning thanks to the wonders of jet lag.
    Got there stumbling over new words which rose out of the grid like Frankenstein’s monster. I agree with the consensus today – err, yesterday.
    Worthy puzzle from a worthy setter, thanks. ***/***

  41. Do not think that I shall be trying the mantra in 8D & 3D any time soon.
    Liked 6D.

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