DT 28757 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28757

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28757

Hints and tips by Mr K

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


Hello, everyone, and welcome to another Tuesday back-page blog.  My impression, backed up by the solving times appearing on the Telegraph Puzzles Site leaderboard, was that today’s puzzle is more straightforward than average.  Those who chase fast solving times should be happy, and those who feel that parsing doesn’t matter and that the job is done when the lights are filled with the correct letters will have time for other things.  I don’t understand those attitudes, because I like to savour pleasurable experiences and make them last.  Of course, the only thing that really matters is that you enjoy your crossword solving, however you do it, and I do hope that you enjoyed this puzzle.  If you haven’t commented before, please consider delurking today to share what you got out of it and to tell us about your experience with cryptic crosswords.

In the hints below most indicators are italicized, and underlining identifies precise definitions, cryptic definitions, and all-in-one definitions.  Clicking on the Answer buttons will reveal the answers.  In some hints hyperlinks provide additional explanation or background.  Clicking on a picture will enlarge it or display a bonus illustration.



1a    Inferred what Tom Daley did, perhaps, captivates the Queen (7)
DERIVED:  What sportsman Tom Daley did at the Olympics, for example, contains (captivates) the usual Latin abbreviation for Queen Elizabeth

5a    Page to be first, editor begged (7)
PLEADED:  Put together an abbreviation for page, a word meaning to be first, and the usual abbreviation for editor

9a    A wife almost generous? Rubbish! (5)
AWFUL:  Assemble A from the clue, the abbreviation for wife, and all but the last letter (almost) of generous or abundant

10a   Every second a flyer goes in behind schedule (9)
ALTERNATE:  Follow A from the clue by a seabird inserted in (goes in) a word meaning behind schedule

11a   Arranging musical instrument, one with whistle (10)
ORGANISING:  Stick together a keyboard musical instrument, the Roman numeral for one, and whistle as a bird, perhaps

12a   Friends hit back (4)
PALS:  The reversal (back) of hit with an open hand

14a   Exotic Persia trip? No sweat (12)
PERSPIRATION:  An anagram (exotic) of PERSIA TRIP NO.  The first picture is, of course, a Japanese calcium-fortified water for dogs

18a   Despite everything, even shelter's damaged (12)
NEVERTHELESS:  An anagram (damaged) of EVEN SHELTER’S

21a   Couples softly dropped voices (4)
AIRS:  Some couples minus the usual musical abbreviation for softly (softly dropped)

22a   I count on us working uninterrupted (10)
CONTINUOUS:  An anagram (working) of I COUNT ON US

25a   I note a duck is in container for quarantine (9)
ISOLATION:  Concatenate I from the clue, the fifth note of a usual musical scale, A from the clue, and the letter that looks like a duck score in cricket inserted in a metal container

26a   Keen to ignore tail, holding large bird (5)
EAGLE:  A synonym of keen minus its last letter (to ignore tail) is wrapped around (holding) the clothing abbreviation for large

27a   Requiring massaging, by the sound of it (7)
NEEDING:  A homophone (by the sound of it) of a synonym of massaging

28a   Questionable American power in religious community (7)
SUSPECT:  An abbreviation for American and the physics symbol for power are inserted together in a religious community



1d    Churchman of French origin in Alcatraz with prisoner (6)
DEACON:  Stick together the French word for of, the first letter of (origin in) ALCATRAZ and a usual prisoner

2d    Match official bungle oddly ignored safety (6)
REFUGE:  An informal contraction of a football match official, for example, is followed by the even letters (oddly ignored) of BUNGLE

3d    Offers kinky nurse love? About time! (10)
VOLUNTEERS:  An anagram (kinky) of NURSE LOVE wrapped around (about) the physics symbol for time

4d    Kent town's  bargains (5)
DEALS:  A Kent town with the ‘S from the clue gives some bargains

5d    Plant I vote to be uprooted? Not very likely (9)
POTENTIAL:  An anagram (to be uprooted) of  PLANT I VOTE minus the abbreviation for very (not very)

6d    Rake in bottom of garden under part of cereal plant (4)
EARN:  The last letter of (bottom of, in a down clue) GARDEN preceded by (under, in a down clue) an important part of a cereal plant such as wheat

7d    Small drink of alcohol and a jerk gets theatrical (8)
DRAMATIC:  Cement together a small serving of alcohol, A from the clue, and a jerk or twitch of some muscles

8d    Maybe relish  putting on clothes (8)
DRESSING:  A double definition.  A word for putting on clothes can also be something of which relish is an example (maybe)

13d   Goes around North with German travellers (10)
PASSENGERS:  Goes or moves is wrapped around both the abbreviation for north and an abbreviation for Germany

15d   Rugby perhaps popular with good training (9)
SCHOOLING:  Join together a thing of which Rugby is an example (perhaps), the usual short word for popular, and an abbreviation for good

16d   Attack that crosses a line? (8)
INVASION:  A cryptic definition of an attack that crosses a line such as a border

17d   All evening Ray loses heart with me (8)
EVERYONE:  A charade of a poetic word for evening, RAY without his middle letter (.. loses heart), and a pronoun that can stand for me

19d   'Poking it out' could be considered rude  language (6)
TONGUE:  A straightforward double definition

20d   Snake starts to emerge, checking the air (6)
ASPECT:  A venomous snake is followed by the initial letters of (starts to) EMERGE CHECKING THE

23d   Rendered notes? (5)
TONES:  An anagram (rendered) of NOTES

24d   Extract from Rimbaud a little surrealist (4)
DALI:  The surrealist is hiding as part of (extract from …) the remainder of the clue.  Click on the picture to see the inferior original version


Thanks to today’s setter for a fun solve.  My favourite is the sweet all-in-one 23d.  Which clue topped your list?


The Quick Crossword pun:  RAZORS + MILE = RAISE A SMILE

61 comments on “DT 28757

  1. Well, I absolutely flew through that. Finished in * time. Only one tiny problem, I couldn’t fully parse the first half of 25a.

    COTD has to be 3d, if only for the memories!

    Many thanks to the setter and Mr.K.

    1. That was a puzzle for me too until I looked at the link kindly provided by Mr K and learned that the note can also be written with an ‘l’ at the end.
      Otherwise all enjoyably straightforward.
      I am sure we are all feeling for the hapless 13ds struggling with the rail network at the moment.
      Many thanks to the setter and to Mr K.

  2. I have been a lurker since my retirement 12 months ago, doing the on-line version in the mornings. Just dropped in to say that in that time, this is the easiest Telegraph cryptic I have come across.

    1. Welcome to the blog, Graeme, and thanks for sharing that. I hope that you will keep commenting.

  3. Really enjoyed this, not too much hard work for a Tuesday. Loved the cat theme too, especially 7d picture – hilarious. Thank you to setter and Mr K

  4. That really was an easy ride which was over all too soon so no excuse not to get on with a bit of gardening before allowing myself more Paris tennis. No Favs. Bunged in 25a so thanks for that parse MrK. Thank you Mysteron.

  5. Similar to yesterday’s, but a tad milder. Quite enjoyable, but the fun was short-lived. 1.5* / 3*

  6. Hurrah! Got there unaided today, but definitely needed help with the parsing of some…I was getting there so they were not complete ‘bung ins’…

    Inevitably put in the ‘friends’ definition at 12a until I got 7d and saw my error….great picture for that, Mr K.

    Thanks to the setter and to Mr K.

    Looks like gardening today as it is glorious up here in Tayside.

  7. De-lurking alert! I think I completed that in record time therefore have time to come out and comment. Found it very straightforward, particularly after wrestling with some of last weeks tricky solves. Like others I couldn’t quite parse 25a without help so many thanks. Wonderful pictures today. Thanks all.

    1. Welcome back to the blog, MsGlad, and congratulations. I’m glad that you enjoyed the pictures.

  8. Not too sure what to make of this one. The very straightforward nature was not particularly offset by clever or ingenious clueing, so I guess I will have to mark it 1.5* /2.5* overall. I could not identify a favourite either, so probably less said the better.

    Thanks to our setter and Mr K.

  9. 1* / 2*. Not much to say about this. It all fell into place very quickly with the parsing of 5d needing the most thought.

    Thanks to the setter and to Mr K.

  10. I, too, have gained so much from this site, so thank you. Sometimes use the site to explain parsing to my neighbours. I found today to be at the easier end, and so completed without the blog. Yippee!

  11. A nice gallop through today although with 22a I fell into the trap of not reading the clue properly. No fsvourites today as all good.
    Thanks to Mr K and setter.

  12. Thanks to Mr K for the cat pics- I think it should be retitled as the Purrsistence Of Memory !
    As everyone says, straightforward but light hearted , liked 20d.
    Bet there will be complaints if tomorrows puzzle is too difficult !
    Thanks setter.
    Liked the Quickie pun-and it did what it said on the tin.

  13. Well yes,it was a breeze, I agree..but I needed you Mr. K for 6d!
    Why one can get stuck on a 4 letter word with 2 letters in..beats me.
    Thank you for your help, now I can go and walk the dog.

  14. A pleasing romp with just one minor blip when I got waylaid by the ‘other’ Rugby.

    7d takes my vote for its surface read although the real star of the show was Mr K’s pictorial blog – fitted the Quickie pun to a T. Not overly sure about the Pet Sweat though……..

    Thanks to Mr Ron and to Mr K.

  15. Agree enjoyable and a kind one today .
    10 A favourite and well supported by the pic. White one please .
    Forgot to say that my quiz went well at the weekend , raised £600 , and these 2 answers from this site “ abandon ship” and “Mike & Bernie Winters” brought the required groans/ laughter .
    Thanks to everyone .

        1. An original of mine first used in Coventry during the harsh winter of 1978/1979. Exactly when will be in my diary. The location was The Red Lion, Walsgrave on Sowe.

          1. Just seen your response. The proceeds go to our local village hall , a registered charity , and helps towards some expensive improvements in the process of being carried out .

  16. No problems here, fastest solve ever, I think.
    Strange how we go from one extreme (today) to another (last Friday).
    I am even considering a foray into Toughieland, though what usually happens is that I stare at the puzzle for 20 minutes and am instantly put back in my rightful place and retire with my tail between my legs.
    Not sure I can find a favourite, like others have said, sometimes simple crossword contain amusing clues that make you smile. This one didn’t, but thanks go to the setter and Mr.K as usual.

    1. I’m told that today’s Toughie is accessible. I found that I got on better with them once I was able to ignore the Toughie label and just regard them as additional crosswords. Which they are, because we often see Toughies that are actually easier than some of the back-page puzzles appearing in the same week.

      1. Too many words I have never heard of. I should stick to the back-pagers.

  17. Did not find this as easy as most😳 **/*** probably because I was too eager with 26a so had a little trouble with 20d 😏 Favourites 10a and 17d. Thanks to Mr K and to the Setter

  18. A pleasant enough but somewhat unremarkable puzzle for me.
    Thanks to setter and to Mr K

  19. This was just challenging enough not to be a read and write. Enjoyable enough without any that really made me smile. 10a gets COTD for me.
    Ps what’s with all the kats Mr K!

    1. This week the cats from the Toughie blog have been shepherded over here, for reasons that might be clear from inspecting the pictures that Kitty has used on her side.

  20. A lovely puzzle to start back into puzzling after time away. Thanks to Mysteron and Mr K.

  21. Started doing this last night, I can print it off after 7 our time.

    Laughed and read 3 Down to long suffering hubby. You have to bear in mind that my beloved has always had a thing about nurses, well the old-fashioned NHS type nurses, all starched hats and blue uniforms, nipped in waists in tight belts, black stockings and upside down watches.
    BTW WHY did the National Health insist that there were young, fresh-faced perky nurses like that at my side as I squeezed out his sons? But I digress…..

    Me: 3 Down. ‘Offers kinky nurse love? About time! (10)’
    Alan: Ooooohh sounds brilliant! (he was probably chaneling Carry On Doctor or Benny Hill by this time)
    Me: Don’t get your hopes or anything else up sunshine, it’s ‘volunteers’
    Alan: ‘B*gger. ‘
    Alan: ‘Actually if it was going to be two words, it would be Salma Hayek, 7 of her, in Across the Universe.’

    43rd aniversary in September, still know how to make him laugh :-)

  22. Well, I fairly flew through that. First of all it made me think it was Monday, then the 1a queen clue made me think it was a 10a Thursday RayT. My downfall for all of ten seconds was questioning if there was such a surrealist as Udal in 24d. The cold diet cola I was having for lunch quite clearly addled the brain. Many thanks setter and Mr Kitty.

  23. That was a pleasant solve, and all done by the end of breakfast, despite being woken early by the doorbell. Great pictures from Mr Kitty. Will share with no 2 daughter when we go for coffee later. She will love them.

  24. My last post has disappeared into the ether and it’s not much fun having to repeat myself but……
    Favourite? Illustration to 7d, priceless!
    I found this much on a par with todays’ Toughie so, for those in doubt, have a go.
    It all depends whether or not you are on the setter’s wavelength/ I’ve even been beaten by the “Quickie”.

    1. I am always beaten by the quickie, I don’t think I have ever finished it, there are always one or two I can never get.

      1. That’s a comfort. After all, when one of the clues is, for example, “a city in the USA” what hope have we got?

  25. Easy solves still enjoyable as Mr. K. says. Loved the Kitty pics. Liked 14a had to think about 13d. Thanks Mr K.

  26. I have never solved a DT cryptic so quickly. I wonder what makes some so difficult and some so easy? I think the number of anagrams helps and maybe the shape of the grid. In any case a very enjoyable puzzle if all too brief. Thanks to all.

    1. Have to agree Vbc possibly the easiest DT cryptic crossword I have ever completed. Where can one find degree of difficulty/solving time comparisons?

      1. You can find data on the distribution of solving times and the use of aids for one particular puzzle here

        The Telegraph Puzzles Site Leaderboard gives some idea of solving times. I believe that the fastest times seen by the UK morning are people who have cheated in some way (e.g. solving in the paper and then typing in the answers in the puzzles site). Solving times longer than four or five minutes are probably legitimate.

        Those solving times are the best measure we have of the degree of difficulty of a puzzle.

        1. I often log in to the puzzles website at midnight UK time and inevitably, by 3 minutes after midnight, someone has recorded a solving time of 2m 20s. They have obviously hacked in to the site somehow to falsify their times. Strange what some people find satisfying.
          Thanks to the setter for an enjoyable solve and to Mr K for the cats.

          1. I don’t understand the rush to solve puzzles quickly – much nicer to savour them for as long as possible.

  27. Agree with lots of the other bloggers a benign offering today but still very enjoyable. Goes to show that whatever level the puzzle if it rings your bell and you enjoy it that’s what it’s all about in my book. Slight hold up in SW corner with last in 17d but other than that quite straightforward a pleasant solve.

    Clue of the day: Got to be 3d

    Rating 2* / 3.5*

    Thanks to Mr K and the setter

  28. Solved very quickly on train this morning. Always like to impress my neighbour on the train. I put in 12a the wrong way round to start with. Also admit to googling Udal before I looked at the clue again. My only problem was parsing 20 d which I could not do without Mr K’s help. I did have some favourites 11a and 15 and 19d. Thank setter and Mr K.

  29. Not quite as easy for me as some here. Couple of silly spelling mistakes- tunes for tone everyman for everyone were silly errors. Mr K put me right with the parsings and lightened my mood with his amusing cat pics.
    3d was my fave today. Thanks to him and setter. And a welcome to those who delurked today. I was a lurker for ages until the excellent hints and friendly welcoming hinters and bloggers improved my cruciverbalism enough to feel able to give my own twopenn’orth.

  30. The margins of the printed out puzzle, that we use for scribble areas, are pristine which is a sure sign that it all went together without much of a fight. We had to look up who Tom Daley was but we did know the Kent town. Pleasant solve.
    Thanks Mr Ron and Mr K.

  31. I only started this an hour ago and found it an absolute joy to be able to complete in double quick time for a change. Yes, it was easier than usual but good fun and great to be able to review all the hints afterwards. COTD 3D getting slightly close to the mark…! Thanks to the setter and to all.

  32. Yes, nothing too tricky today, a definite * for difficulty. If I hadn’t spent ages agonising over 16d I might have been quicker still, but well, there you go.

  33. Haven’t been here lately as a very busy time of year with holiday let and work in the olive groves before burning ban comes into place. Reasonable solve today so thanks to setter and Mr K for all your efforts.

    1. Good to hear from you – the olive oil is delicious and going down very well here!

      1. I am very pleased to hear that. A drizzle a day will keep many things at bay!

  34. I wonder whether ‘invasion’ fits ‘crossing a line’ in terms of (eg): invasion of privacy? Just a thought! A bit of a ‘workaday’ puzzle for me. As someone said: ‘unremarkable’ – although of course, well worth the effort.

    1. Yes, I think invasion in that sense of crossing a figurative line could also fit the clue.

      At times like this it would be great if the setter dropped in to tell us what they had in mind.

  35. Both clue and picture made me laugh in 7d.
    And a few others for that matter.
    Easy solve but very enjoyable surface.
    Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  36. Soon over but fun to do. No real faves… maybe 16d for its simplicity.
    Thanks to Mr Ron, and to Mr K for the review and pix.

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