DT 28683 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

DT 28683 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28683 (Hints)

The Saturday Crossword Club

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, an assortment of clues, including some of the more difficult ones, have been selected and hints provided for them.  Although I try to select the clues I expect to cause the most difficulty, feel free to ask for help on any others – but please read the instructions in red at the end of this post.

Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”. Where the hint describes a construct as “usual” this means that more help can be found in The Usual Suspects, which gives a number of the elements commonly used in the wordplay. Another useful page is Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing, which features words with meanings that are not always immediately obvious.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions.

Some hints follow.


1a    Finding university by accident, almost (10)
U(niversity) followed by what is almost, but not quite, an accident (4,5)

10a    Trainee accountant upset Irish priest (5)
A Scottish or Canadian accountant followed by the reversal of the name of an Irish TV priest

12a    Terrorists capturing second priest from the Holy Land (7)
Some Irish terrorists around (capturing) S(econd) and followed by an Old Testament priest

13a    Was tunnelling long time to get outside new prison (7)
A three-letter verb meaning was tunnelling and a long period of time around N(ew)

18a    Putting emphasis on not getting enough runs? (12)
Split as (5,7) this could mean not getting enough runs in a cricket match – well done England for not doing this in the final One-Day International

21a    What golfer should avoid missing middle of green all the way? (7)
Where any golfer should try to avoid (3,5), then drop the middle letter of grEen

24a    Unfortunate occurrence in fluid mechanics (9)
This unfortunate occurrence is a neat anagram (fluid) of MECHANICS

27a    One forecasts where manta will swarm (10)
An anagram (will swarm) of WHERE MANTA


1d    Ancient city feature — feral child (6)
Our usual ancient city followed by a facial feature

2d    Bear close on river (6)
A three-letter verb meaning to close or finish followed by a river in North Yorkshire

3d    Men upset with TV presenter’s overlooking a corrupt feature of Parliament once (6,8)
The reversal (upset in a down clue) of one of our usual suspects for men is followed by the surname of a TV presenter, who has become a National Treasure, without (overlooking) the initial A but with the S from ‘S

7d    Left savages corrupt US city (3,5)
L(eft) followed by an anagram (corrupt) of SAVAGES gives me an excuse to include an Elvis video, but I decided to include the cover version by ZZ Top instead

9d    Criminal band done nicely — they robbed banks (6,3,5)
This anagram (criminal) of BAND DONE NICELY gives another video opportunity

16d    Patron‘s order accepted by one who fought Indians (8)
An Order of Merit inside (accepted by) the surname of the US General who famously died fighting the Indians

17d    It may be possible to make Mars visit one day (1,4,3)
Put the Greek equivalent of the Roman war god Mars inside I (one) and DAY from the clue

19d    Chaos has Prime Minister on edge (6)
Our current Prime Minister is a gift to crossword setters – her surname is followed by an edge or border

22d    Joint complaint when wife’s ignored (5)
Start with a complaint and drop the W(ife)

The Crossword Club is now open.

Could new readers please read the Welcome post and the FAQ before posting comments or asking questions about the site.

As this is a Prize crossword, please don’t put any ANSWERS, whether WHOLE, PARTIAL or INCORRECT, or any ALTERNATIVE CLUES in your comment. If in doubt, leave it out!

Please read these instructions carefully – they are not subject to debate or discussion. Offending comments may be redacted or, in extreme cases, deleted. In all cases the administrator’s decision is final.

The Quick Crossword pun: wart+abyss+kits=water biscuits

91 comments on “DT 28683 (Hints)

  1. It’s nice to find that you’re in tune with the setter because everything just fell into place this morning and I’m grateful for that because of the rugby dominating most of my afternoon and early evening. For those of you who complete the puzzle in the paper, you may be interested to know the printers are trying to eradicate “for good” the creasing problems. I did draw the Telegraph’s attention to a recent episode of ‘Endeavour’ where the butler was seen to be ironing the paper – it was a copy of the Telegraph…

  2. I’m almost there but can’t parse 20D any pointers would be much appreciated,apart from that it was fairly plain sailing.Many thanks to the setter & to BD for the hints provided.

        1. Read Jose’s comment again and also look up the first two letters of your solution in the dictionary. Remember what you see there as it will turn up again (and again and ….)

  3. Hi Dave
    Just wanted to say thanks for your blog – I have been lurking for a while and find it really useful.
    I usually end up here when I cannot parse a clue. Today was typical, most went in easily (3d was nice) but 17d had me puzzled. Basically as an engineer I don’t study the classics!

    1. Welcome to the blog – now that you’ve de-lurked, I hope you’ll come back and comment often

  4. I rated this as a real belter. Some super clues with great surface reading. I needed BD to parse my answer for 17d, which I felt sure was correct, but couldn’t understand why. Very clever and so has to be my clue of the day. Thanks BD and setter.

  5. Try again – last comment vanished into thin air! Really enjoyed today’s puzzle. 21a makes it as Fav but with plenty of near contenders. Interesting to see new ways of describing anagrams in clues. Thank you Mysteron and BD. Now for a feast of RU – come on England. 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿

  6. A terrific puzzle for a grey, dull Saturday morning. A load of candidates for favourite clue, but I will pick 17d which just beat 21a into second place. I found this comfortable to solve, but some of the parsing took a while, which pushed out the time spent but increased the enjoyment, so 2.5* /4* from me overall.

    Thanks to our setter and BD.

  7. Not too challenging, and a little low on the enjoyment scale, completed at a fast gallop – **/**.

    Favourite – a toss-up between 26a and 1d – and I think I have to go with 26a.

    Thanks to the setter and BD.

  8. This was a mixed bag with very well-written clues ranging from mild to quite tricky – which is probably the right recipe if you want to attract many solvers/readers from a wide diversity of experience/ability. And from that perspective the DT has got it right. Personally, I prefer Prize cryptics to be very challenging or tough – but I’m in a definite minority and I do not complain. The clues were all very good and I did enjoy it. 2* / 3*

  9. Pleased to see that BD included 3d in “some of the more difficult ones”.

    I found it to be the most difficult.

    Thank you, Kind Sir.

    1. Even after reading the hints, I still can’t understand it. Is the presenter xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

      COTD 1a by a long chalk.

      Many thanks to the setter and BD.

        1. I’m going to have to edit both of you as you are definitely trotting off into alternative land, but I will just say that I think Malcolm is correct and Senf is not

            1. So it is – good job I’m not blogging this one (cue Gnomethang’s boss asking him to work late on Thursday)

              1. Not fair!

                We, mere mortals, are not allowed to see the censored bits! What are you talking about?

                1. They were giving too much away about the possible TV person in 3d, I was getting muddled up and BD sorted it out

      1. BD has given you a very good clue by including the words ‘national treasure’ in his hint. That should narrow your search considerably.

            1. Indeed. But I was convinced he somehow fitted into the wordplay. Lucky the definition made the clue gettable and I could wait for your hint.

      2. I’ve got it now. I’m not used to the presenter being referred to by his surname only – and presenter isn’t the first noun I would think of to describe him.

        Ho Hum.

        1. Yes I’ve got it now thank goodness, can get it out of my head at last. Jane’s comment got it for me.

  10. Completed today with minimal trouble. [**`/****]
    Only real problem arose with the parsing of 1a where I kept trying to use ‘by’ as a building block rather than a connector.
    Many top clues today including 17d, 21a and 25a.

    Thanks to the setter, and BD for clearing up my 1a confusion.

  11. I needed BD to parse 3d and 17d for me so thanks for that. Once I’m fairly sure of my answer I can’t be bothered to spend the time justifying it so I’m very grateful to BD and his remarkable team.

    Thanks also to the setter, I thoroughly enjoyed this challenge which was completed in my average time for a Saturday.

    Just re-emerging following a particularly severe dose of the ‘flu which has laid me low for two solid weeks – avoid it at all costs.

    1. By the way, I’ve just checked my score for last Saturday’s puzzle and, for about the sixth week in a row (and Sundays are the same) I’m told I got nil correct answers. I got fed up with it so I did what the bods at the Telegraph always instruct and I deleted and then re-opened the app. This didn’t work so I wrote to the Telegraph and they inform me that as everyone else is fine, the problem is mine alone! Anyone else?

        1. Thank you Mike, but I have absolutely no idea what that means. I guess I’ll have to get my son to deal with it

    2. That’s a shame because for me the parsing is the most satisfying part of the solving process – anyone can “bung” in an answer and hope for the best.

  12. Straightforward but very enjoyable. I especially liked the neat anagram in 24 a. The weather continues to plague us. Having been snowed in for 2 days recently, we had incessant rain yesterday. On my way to a formal dinner, I had to turn back because of flooding in the road. So I dined in our kitchen, dressed in a DJ and bow tie, on fish fingers and microwaved baked potato,
    Thank you BD and setter.

  13. Completed with only a small bit of head scratching today and most enjoyable. However, like some solvers above, I needed BD’s hints to parse 3d and 17d. So thanks very much setter and BD.

  14. 2* / 3.5*. I found this very enjoyable with the notable exception of 3d which is overlong, clunky and totally out of keeping with the rest of a great puzzle.

    1a & 21a were my joint favourites, but many more came into contention.

    Many thanks to Mr Ron and to BD.

    P.S. If you fancy another great puzzle, I can highly recommend today’s NTSPP.

  15. Good Saturday fare – first time I’ve seen the adjectival form of 4d used.

    Tops for me were 1a & 19d.

    Thanks to Mr Saturday Ron and to BD for the club – that’s some beards those band members are sporting!

  16. Excellent crossword today, nothing too difficult.
    I had to bung in 22d, it was only a while later that the ‘complaint’ dawned on me.
    Too many great clues to single out one. I still have not parsed 3d in spite of the hint, but it was obvious just from the definition.
    Thanks all.

    1. Excellent crossword today, nothing too difficult.
      I had to bung in 22d, it was only a while later that the ‘complaint’ dawned on me.
      Too many great clues to single out one. I still have not parsed 3d in spite of the hint, but it was obvious just from the definition. Stop press just got it!! Great clue.
      Thanks all

  17. Excellent puzzle for a Saturday morning even if the solving was interrupted by an unexpected couple of sets of tennis. I seem to be at odds with others in that I enjoyed 3d as it made me smile.**/**** for me. Thanks to setter and BD.

  18. Not too challenging, and very smooth cluing. Very enjoyable…and I now have lots of time to tackle the NTSPP before I get to work. Thanks BD and today’s setter.

  19. Good fun and not too tricky.
    1a was my last answer but I really can’t see why I was so slow with it.
    A week ago I wouldn’t have understood why my answer for 17d was right – we had the Greek equivalent of Mars in a crossword a few days ago.
    I took quite a long time to untangle 21a and 3d.
    I liked 1a and 17 and 22d. My favourite was 25a – made me laugh.
    Thanks to today’s setter and to BD.
    NTSPP later but need a ‘change of scenery’ for a while first – in other words I’m going out!

  20. Nice puzzle with a bit of head scratching, with the exception of 3d, the answer is clear but I could not parse it at all and I am afraid the hint did not help
    me as it is TV related and I’m not.
    Still there is an afternoons rugby to enjoy and the snow has gone.

    Many thanks to BD and team.

    1. Welcome to the blog

      The definition is ‘was ashamed’ – you need to insert one of the common abbreviations for ‘gym’ into a synonym for hired

  21. George Fame took me back to Flamingo Club all-nighters in 1964, great days. Splendid crossword, knew 3d from recent read, some lovely anagrams but thanks to BD for sorting several answers out for me. Thanks also to setter off to look at GK in Saturday. P S Georgie Fame appearing at Southwold Arts Festival later in year.

  22. PS Cannot believe I missed 3d first time round, it is a good clue – it’s me that’s not good.

  23. Oh my, 8d eludes me. I have a word I can put in, but I can’t for the life of me make sense of the clue. Apart from that, 1.5*/3*, with 1and 18a particular favourites.

    1. Look at my reply to comment 23 above

      If you are stuck on a clue that BD hasn’t hinted, it is always worth reading the comments to see if anyone has asked the same thing

  24. I loved it all. I knew 3d, remembered from school history lessons, but for the life of me I couldn’t parse it, so thanks for that. I can’t believe I missed my fave presenter.
    Is that Mr. Fish at 27a? You’ll never let him forget, will you.
    No fave today, too much choice and Kath would get cross with me, though 1a was very clever and needs to be mentioned.
    Thanks to the brilliant setter and to BD for hints and tips.

  25. Super Saturday again what a fabulous prize puzzle full of fun, with a somewhat Catholic theme? So many great clues that really stood out such as 10a / 23a / 25a / 15d / 19d / 22d . This puzzle and perfect for me with the right sort of wavelength. Not straightforward by any means and was held up in the NW corner. 8d was last in and really had a job parsing that, but completed with a lot of satisfaction.

    Clues of the day: All of the above.

    Rating 2.5* / 4.5*

    Thanks to BD and the setter for a special puzzle.

  26. **/***. All fell into place until the NW corner didn’t yield for far too long on reflection. Thanks to the setter and BD for the pointers.

  27. Some really excellent clues in this quality puzzle. I particularly liked 1a, 13a, 21a, 24a, 17d, and 20d. Didn’t know what 3d was about, so I’ve learned something today. Many thanks to the setter and to BD.

  28. Enjoyable and not too difficult but I did take an extended break to take mum out for lunch. The east was done early doors with the exception of 20d. The blog discussion helped there. The hint helped with 1a and together with the parsing of 3d the rest of the west soon fell. That North Yorkshire river seems to be making a regular appearance and I wonder if some of our overseas correspondents are as familiar with small tributaries of the Ouse.

  29. I thoroughly enjoyed this. Didn’t find it the toughest of Saturday crosswords but did find it one of the most fun. I especially liked the fluid mechanics.

    Thanks to the setter and BD.

  30. A fantastic puzzle I thought, lots of smiles, lots to appreciate. My only complaint? It was over too quickly.

  31. I’m grateful to BD for clearing up the definition and parsing of 12a , as I had read the first word as the definition and was infuriated.
    3d was something I remember well from History lessons long ago ; what a good teacher we had.
    Otherwise it was pretty plain sailing.
    Always nice to see Father Ted , he amuses me still.
    Great result in the Rugby this afternoon, which I didn’t actually see. London be prepared for a temporary invasion on March 17th.
    Thanks to the setter and BD.

      1. It all depends on who you’re cheering for. In my case Ireland. Twickenham will be difficult , but Irish people love going to London. So , brace yourselves.

        1. I thought as much! Congratulations anyway. Let’s see what Twickenham brings next week.

          1. May the best team win !
            And what Twickenham will bring is a hoard of Irish fans who have Monday off as it’s a bank holiday , but London is so big you probably won’t notice.

            1. Ireland will have to do well to win at Fortress Twickenham – their last victory there in the Six Nations was 27th February 2010 and England are unbeaten at home in the Six Nations since 25th February 2012.

    1. First two letters refer to space required in a text followed by 4-letter synonym for first two words in clue.

    2. 20d Sign up to follow space command (6)
      On looking at this again, I think that what is causing difficulty is the definition. Although it is correct, it is not a word that most people will use and I don’t think it makes regular appearances in crosswords. Try concentrating on the wordplay (the first two letters are a “usual suspect”) and then looking up the resultant word in a dictionary.

  32. Most enjoyable fare today and no problems really **/**. Some great original clueing today like 1a and similar 21a which gets my vote for tallest poppy. Finding time these days not easy. Had to fetch daughter’s unreliable car from Selly Oaks today. Did not even get time to watch the Six Nations. Probably just as well. Congratulations to Ireland and the Irish. Bless ’em.

  33. Thanks to the setter and to Big Dave for the hints. A very enjoyable puzzle with some super clues. Needed the hints to parse 3&17d, I thought the latter was to with a comic book hero, but I was way off the mark. Favourite was 1a. Was 2*/3.5* for me.

  34. I am one of the many avid lurkers of this excellent blog. I can’t resist commenting though on 3d. Who needs to remember history lessons? Surely the definitive work is an episode of the excellent Blackadder 2? I learnt all about 3d’s there as Baldrick, Pitt the Younger and a dachshund named Colin were candidates for the one vote. Little did I know how useful the knowledge would be!

    1. Welcome to the blog – I do hope you’ll comment more in future now you’ve de-lurked.

    2. That happens to be exactly where I learnt about the term too (was it the third series?). Thank you Curtis and Elton for the vital knowledge. :) Brilliant!

  35. Hello All

    I particularly enjoyed 1a. Still unclear on 3d – I know the answer but not sure how. Will wait for the review on Friday.

    1. Welcome to the blog Tom

      Please don’t use the comment page for specific puzzles – they are more likely to be read if on the relevant post (I’ve moved yours).

  36. Very enjoyable. 1a last one in and too clever for me to parse probably as I did not think of the short abbreviation. Other one I could not parse although answer obvious was 3d. I must tried to read downwards or write down from left to right. Favourites all across clues – 1 (when it eventually clicked), 12, 13, 21 and 26 all for different reasons. Thanks setter Big D and all for interesting comments. Only done today as I was out in a place called Lanchester (new to me) yesterday.

  37. Belatedly I realise that I failed to comment yesterday upon completing this entertaining crossword. 1a was my favourite clue and 2/4* overall.
    Thanks to the Saturday setter, and to BD for the hints etc.

  38. Late as usual. Saturday busy with all that rugby, but disappointed to say the least by England…
    Enjoyed the puzzle but 3D had me foxed for a while. Some of the hints were a bit ‘explicit’ ! E.g. 7d and 27a, but I had them in before I looked at the blog!
    As usual some excellent anagrams e.g 4d. Thanks to BD and the compiler for a good time.

    1. Welcome to the blog Tricky Micky

      4d Is rich but unfortunately showing arrogance (9)
      An anagram (unfortunately ) of IS RICH BUT

Comments are closed.