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DT 28713 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28713 (Hints)

The Saturday Crossword Club

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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.

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    Take advantantage advantage of what Italy and India have reported (10)
Ignore the obvious spelling error (now corrected on the Telegraph Puzzles website) and concentrate on what the names of the two countries concerned have in common (7,2) – the answer is a word that sounds like (have reported) this characteristic

9a    Caught mistress taking tea? One could be lucky (10)
C(aught) followed by a mistress and the part of a plant of which tea is an example (a definition-by-example that is indicated by the question mark)

12a    Device for carrying babies (6)
Two definitions – a bed supported on poles (device for carrying), for transporting a sick person, and brood of young (babies) born to an animal

13a    In the red, fashionable music maker (8)
Inside a shade of red insert a two-letter adjective meaning fashionable

18a    Wife fighting to secure high-class sale (5,7)
A cockney word for wife followed by some fighting around (to secure) the letter used to represent high-class

21a/22a    It involves tricks to tighten with spanner (8,6)
This game that involves tricks is a charade of a verb meaning to tighten and something that spans (spanner)

22a    See 21 Across

24a    What may catch something like a fly (4)
Two definitions – something that may be used to catch and a type of light carriage like a fly

27a    In Lib-Dem leader I will replace ace making comeback that can’t be beaten (10)
Start with the IN from the clue and the name of the current (at the time of writing!) Lib-Dem leader (5,5) then the I from the clue is used to replace the reversal (making comeback) of ACE


1d    Set up the French seafood (6)
A verb meaning to set up, for example, a gun so that it is ready to fire is followed by the French definite article

3d    The people shooting arrows here in classic Western (3,9)
Split as (5,7) this could be the people shooting arrows

5d    Steady partner, one from the same place? (10)
An adjective meaning steady followed by a partner gives a term that used to mean a horse from the same place, but is now used more generally

8d    Island’s character is essential element (8)
A three-letter word for low island or reef and the S from ‘S followed by a word meaning the character or quality of a sound

14d    Command having entered 9 perhaps (10)
Split as (2,8) this could indicate having entered a road system of which 9 Across could be (perhaps) an example

17d    Colour newspaper (8)
Two definitions – a colour or flag marking a rallying point and a rag edited by George Osborne, of whom the less said the better

19d    Get attached to film publicity brothers brought up (6)
A two-letter word meaning publicity followed by the reversal (brought up in a down clue) of the abbreviation for brothers

23d    Fairy queen hugged by Greek character (4)
Our queen’s regnal cipher inside (hugged by) a letter (character) in the Greek alphabet

The Crossword Club is now open.

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The Quick Crossword pun: roam+antic=romantic

42 comments on “DT 28713 (Hints)

  1. Took some time to get into this very enjoyable puzzle which meant solving at a fast canter – ***/****.

    Some very good clues with the following candidates for favourite – 1a, 13a, 18a, and the 21a/22a combo – and the winner is 1a by a nose.

    Thanks to the setter and BD.

  2. 2* / 4*. As I found the NW, my normal starting point, the hardest sector of this very enjoyable puzzle, like Senf this took me some time to get underway. However the other three corners went in quickly so my overall time was only 2*.

    Although the answer was obvious, I needed BD’s hint to understand the relevance of 9 in 14a.

    1a was my favourite.

    Many thanks to Mr Ron and to BD.

  3. I didn’t notice the spelling error when solving – the Word spell checker kindly drew my attention to it when I created the draft review document

    1. I also missed the spelling error – something to do with theory that we recognise (longer) words from the first few letters?

      1. I raed seomwehre taht snetneces are esay to cpomhrened as lnog as the frist and lsat ltetres rmaein the smae.

        It would make crosswords a bit difficult though although a few enigmatic variations I have tackled have tried this technique.

  4. Thoroughly enjoyed this one despite not knowing the ‘classic’ Western or understanding the relationship between 9a & 14d.
    Do have a look at Wikipedia’s description of the 9a depicted by BD – it’s enough to scare the bejesus out of any motorist!

    Podium places awarded to 1,12,18&26a.

    Thanks to Mr Saturday Ron and to BD for the club.

    1. I think the Wikipedia article is one of those that is trying to put into words something that is easy to see in pictures. The design of the junction is quite simple but, personally, I don’t like the problem of merging that the article describes as it ‘encourages’ dithery drivers to ‘over-dither.’

  5. Like many others slow to start and then it all fell in place. Liked 1ac! LOI was 4d where I had to look up the slang for drunk … can’t say I’ve ever heard it used before.

    Thanks to setter and BD.

  6. Enjoyable but (or and) quite tricky I thought.
    I’ve never heard of the 9a road system but it is in the BRB and I’ve also never heard of the 3d film.
    I confess to needing BD’s hint to understand what had to be the right answer to 24a.
    My favourite was 1a and I thought 21/22a was pretty good too.
    Thanks to today’s setter and to BD.
    Need to cut the grass . . .

  7. Enjoyable but a bit tricky, as RD I struggled most in the NW 1a 12a and 2d were the sticking points. Once I cleared the wrong answer in 1a a trip to the thesaurus helped solve the other two.
    I took a trip to the dictionary to check 19d as that was a new word for me. I also needed a reminder of some rhyming slang for a clue which shall remain nameless for fear of the naughty corner.
    Thanks to BD and setter.

  8. I also struggled with the NW corner so got going in the SE instead and gradually everything fell into place. Some lovely and clever stuff, my particular favourites being 1a and 27a.
    Many thanks to the setter and to BD.

  9. 1a my clear favourite today in this fairly tricky Prize Puzzle. Like others this was a slow starter, then a trot rather than a dash to the finish. I confess to only understanding the 9a/14d combination from reading too many American best sellers about a certain antihero who does a lot of hitch-hiking from these sorts of places. I thought the challenge was more enjoyable as a result of the head-scratching, so 3* /4* from me overall.

    Thanks to our Saturday setter, and BD.

  10. Enjoyed this. A very slow start but accelerated towards the end. Thrown by the famous cowboy film but liked the construction. Learnt a new word on 19d and 4d. Liked 1a. 18a.
    24a could also be a carnivorous plant.

  11. Great puzzle which took me a while to complete but complete I did! Just writing this and noticing that I got 2d and 12a wrong, a matter of spelling 2d incorrectly – no wonder my 12a was ‘farfelu’! Had never heard of 19d… My favourite was 3d, how clever. 3.5*/4*. Many thanks to setter and to BD. Merusa, thank you for your note for Fifi! She gets very much admired in France and people ask what breed she is – cockapoos have yet to cross the Channel!

  12. Really struggled to get going but eventually the bottom half caved in with the fairy queen giving me problems and not sure the answer is right now? The NW corner caused major issues with 1a creating a real delay, and took ages to fall. Once 1a fell the others followed but not without resistance and last in was 12a and didn’t know the device? A tougher puzzle today than the average Saturday prize puzzle for me, but an enjoyable challenge.

    Clue of the day: Thought 27a was very clever.

    Rating: 3.5* / 3.5*

    Thanks to BD and the setter

    1. I don’t know how far I can go, but you might want to google the answer – she’s not a queen, just a fairy.

      1. Thanks Merusa done that and think I’ve got it? Not really well up on fairies I’m afraid.

  13. I really enjoyed this but found it a but tricky, and I did need to do a lot of googling! Didn’t know the lib-dem leader, the film at 3d or 19d, and so on, all fairly clued and able to work out.
    No fave today, too much choice here, loved it all.
    Thanks to the Saturday setter and to BD for his hints.

  14. 3/4. Took a while to get on the right wavelength but well worth it. Clue of the week for me was 1a. Thanks to all.

  15. I’m not sure whether or not to blame the jet-lag for my difficulties with this one (so I will), but I found it to be tricky, especially in the NW which is my usual starting point. I needed electronic assistance with a couple and also BD’s explanation regarding 9a and 14d.

    Thanks to BD and setter 3.5*/4*

  16. I appreciate that today is “Hints day ” so you may not be able to help but I have an answer for 7d which is a fine material but I can’t, for the life of me, parse it.

    It’s extremely rare for me to not be able to parse a clue but this is, truly, driving me nuts. If I had any hair I’d pull it out.

    Someone perleeeeeze put me out of my misery…..

  17. 4d…. hmmm, I think and hope I have the answer! This has to be the trickiest Saturday puzzle for a long long time. A great challenge which I found difficult to get started and then unusually didn’t really get any easier!
    1a was favourite by a mile, and overall 3/4*.
    Thanks to Mr Ron, and to BD for the hints.

    1. As I always used to say to the much missed Brian, the dictionary is a good friend of the crossword solver. Those of us who started solving long before the internet tend to look there first before any online searches.

  18. Tricky, but doable.
    Lots of nice clues. Perhaps just me, but I thought the use of 9a to indicate the second half of 19d was pretty bizarre.
    Fav was 1a.
    Beautiful day here in London, managed to finally get lots of seeds sown in the allotment.
    Thanks BD and Mr.Ron.

  19. Just nicely testing for a Saturday exercise and good fun to boot. As with others, editor’s oversight of sp in 1a passed me by and it seems I was far from alone in finding the NW the most challenging. A dead-heat for Fav between 9a and 13a. Thank you Mysteron and BD.

  20. Odd that most found the NW corner the most testing, yet for me, it was the easiest part and the rest was a struggle!

  21. Very heavy reliance on BD and other aids today. It is several years since I’ve not been able to finish the Saturday crossword. I can’t get 4d, even with the checking letters. It’s only four letters for goodness sake!

    Given the second letter must be xxxx, I will now systematically go through every possible (5 x 26) combination.

    1. Please read the instructions in red before posting again.

      4d Sing merrily being drunk, having consumed litres (4)
      A three-letter adjective meaning drunk around (having consumed) L(itres)

  22. Excellent challenge. ***/*****. I liked the 9a/14d linkage – very clever, and 18a. But 1a had to be my favourite.

  23. My efforts weren’t helped last night by putting the answer to 15a in 18a’s space! Thankfully I discovered my mistake this morning and with much more help this week have finally finished. That said, I can’t parse my answer to 7d. I have the fine material, but it doesn’t have sufficient letters and doesn’t make sense with either the additional letter from 15a or with John Bee’s clue, so help required please as it’s rather annoying.
    1a gets top marks this week, so thanks to the setter and to BD for some early help.

    1. The answer to your problem, I think from reading your comment,, is that you have the wrong fine material

  24. Trying to play catchup with the crosswords. Had to do a googlething for 3D which made sense of the clue. Many thanks setter and BD.

  25. Like many I had a hard time in the NW corner, until I read BD’s kind hint. Very clever!
    It all then fell into place. It’ s a long time since 18a wife was used in a Saturday crossword, and it had me fooled for a while. A testing but enjoyable puzzle and thanks to BD and the compiler

  26. Took BD’s hint to appreciate the clever 1A.
    Viz a viz comment 18 above, Brian’s posts were amongst those I always used to read !

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