DT 28784 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28784

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28784

Hints and tips by Deep Threat

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Good morning from South Staffs on another sunny morning. It’s good to be back after our extended tour of France, one of the highlights of which was when Mrs DT and I were entertained to dinner at Le Jardin in Hyères by Jean-Luc: we can recommend the bourride de poissons. My thanks to my colleagues on the blogging team for covering my absence.

Quite a gentle reintroduction to Giovanni, I thought, with the long anagrams providing lots of checkers to get me started.

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. 


8a           Yesteryear’s vehicle could be creaking car, yeah? (7,8)

9a           Group of stars the French love (3)
LEO – One of the forms of the French definite article followed by the letter which looks like a love score at tennis.

Image result for leo constellation

10a         Quiet agent managed to phone up once before meal (11)
PREPRANDIAL – Put together the musical symbol for quiet, a commercial agent, another word for ‘managed’, and how phone calls were made before push button phones came into use.

11a         6 turned up in Lancashire town (5)
BACUP – The reverse (turned) of another word for the answer to 6d, followed by UP (from the clue).

12a         What about commotion with food being sent back in Mac’s place? (9)
EDINBURGH – Put together a commotion and the reverse (sent back) of an informal word for food, then wrap an exclamation like ‘What!’ around the result. The answer is a city where people whose surname begins ‘Mac’ may well reside.

Image result for edinburgh

15a         Proclaim President a monster on our screens (7)
TRUMPET – The surname of the US President, followed by the usual cinematic alien.

17a         Be able to look down on public work (7)
OVERTOP – Another word for ‘public’ or ‘open’ followed by the Latin abbreviation for a work (of music, perhaps).

19a         Conversation sure to ramble after party (9)
DISCOURSE – The sort of party where loud recorded music is played, followed by an anagram (to ramble) of SURE.

20a         Aussie animal’s taking time to settle down (5)
ROOST – The short form of the name of an Australian marsupial, with its ‘S, followed by Time.

21a         V-sign shows support (11)
VINDICATION – V (from the clue) followed by another word for a sign.

24a         Period of anger when king is deposed (3)
AGE – Remove the Latin abbreviation for a king from the front of a word for anger.

25a         Scruples I deftly dealt with, showing no consideration for another (15)


1d           Nightspots’ star performer is a card (3,2,5)
ACE OF CLUBS – One of the playing cards in a standard deck, which could also describe someone who is a top performer in a particular set of venues.

2d           Quickly grab biscuit, having got out of bed (4,2)
SNAP UP – A type of biscuit, often preceded by ‘brandy’ or ‘ginger’, followed by ‘out of bed’.

3d           Class crossword compiler who gets stuff into print? (10)
TYPESETTER – Another word for a class or kind, followed by the generic term for someone who prepares a crossword.

4d           Look beyond page two (4)
PAIR – The abbreviation for Page followed by a look or demeanour.

5d           King George meets European member of aristocracy in French city (8)
GRENOBLE – Put together the regnal cipher of King George (where Queen Elizabeth is ER), an abbreviation for European, and an aristocrat.

Image result for grenoble

6d           Duty imposed on one vehicle (4)
TAXI – A financial duty or levy followed by the Roman numeral for one.

7d           Soundness of Tory PM holding line (6)
HEALTH – A 1970s Prime Minister with Line inserted.

8d           Fish from Bali cooked in primitive building (7)
HALIBUT – Some primitive living accommodation wrapped around an anagram (cooked) of BALI.

Image result for halibut

13d         Like some swimsuits arriving undamaged? (2,3,5)
IN ONE PIECE – Double definition, the first describing a swimsuit which is not a bikini.

Image result for one piece swimsuits

14d         Impose restriction on friend in a reasonable manner (10)
RATIONALLY – A restriction (of food or fuel, perhaps), followed by a friend who takes your side in a struggle.

16d         Pictures for official records (8)
PROFILES – The Latin word for ‘for’ or ‘in favour of’, followed by some official records or dossiers.

18d         Manufactured items the Queen gets crazy about (7)
POTTERY – Another word for crazy wrapped around the Queen’s regnal cipher.

19d         Entering sleazy bar, I had to be set apart (6)
DIVIDE – The short form of ‘I had’ inserted into a scruffy bar or nightclub.

20d         Bolt‘s disappointing news about race’s cancellation (3,3)
RUN OFF – The definition is a verb, and the answer could also be a short way of saying that a race has been cancelled.

22d         Boy growing up beginning to enjoy organ (4)
NOSE – Reverse (growing up, in a Down clue) another word for a boy or male child, then add the first letter of Enjoy.

23d         Electrical units installed in campsite (4)
AMPS – Hidden in the last word of the clue.

The Quick Crossword pun GRATE + DEIGNS = GREAT DANES

74 comments on “DT 28784

  1. Another good puzzle from the consistent G. About average difficulty for him and very enjoyable/entertaining. 3* / 4*

  2. Welcome back DT . The minor Tour de France starts demain .
    An OK one for me today with no smiles and no particular favourites . Perhaps, it is the weather . You can have too much of a good thing .
    Thanks to everyone

  3. Once a word gets stuck in your mind it’s very hard to dislodge it – I can’t tell you how long it took me to rid myself of ‘ventilation’.

    Not overly keen on either 17a or 18d – manufactured items seemed a bit loose for the latter – but I did like 3d, made me smile quite a lot.

    Thanks to DG and to DT – nice to see you back again. So pleased to hear that you managed to sample JL’s hospitality, quite envious in fact!

    1. Totally agree about 17a and 18d, Jane. They took me longer than the rest of the crossword. I initially had battery as in battery farming. 17a was new to me.
      Overall after yesterday’s grief it was very enjoyable.
      Thanks all.

    2. Hi Jane, not sure what your objection to pottery is – it is the collective noun for the manufactured items, isn’t it?

      1. Hi Ray,
        The term ‘manufactured items’ could define so many different objects – I felt that the clue perhaps needed to give a little more information.

          1. And me, all pottery is manufactured, but not everything manufactured is a piece of pottery. ‘Manufactured item’ could have been the definition for 8a. For me, it just needed a bit more qualification.

  4. Some head scratching required to complete this one at a fast canter – **/***.

    Candidates for favourite – 3d, 5d, and 16d – and the winner is 16d.

    Thanks to Giovanni and DT (and welcome back).

  5. Bit harsh to call the alien in 15a ‘a monster’, I though he was quite nice.

    1. He was most definitely not a monster, there are plenty of people today who better fit that description, not naming anyone of course.

  6. 1.5* / 3*. I found this very straightforward but I thought it was the most enjoyable Friday puzzle for some while.

    3d was my favourite.

    Many thanks to Giovanni and welcome back and thanks to DT.

  7. Back to **/*** again.
    Pleasant Friday solve, 10a was a smooth charade and a word I had heard before but forgot what it meant.
    I liked 20a as it was brief and to the point.
    Good quickie pun-thanks all.
    Looking forward to tomorrow, just enough brownie points to misbehave !

  8. DT many thanks for your explanation of 12a – I got the answer but couldn’t justify it
    Also thanks to Giovanni – much enjoyed variety of clues

    1. I remember the locals being up in arms when, during another brief period of celebrity, it was pronounced Backup instead of Baycup on the radio. Oh, the indignation!

      1. Nothing worse IMHO – As a Scot, I always have a laugh hearing mispronunciations of Scottish places. Hawick & Milngavie are 2 of my particular favourites :smile:

        1. Even you might not have recognised the way the announcer pronounced Milngavie when I was at Glasgow Central a few years ago – it consisted of one strange syllable.

          1. I seem to have dropped into moderation there – any particular reason?

            Re – Milngavie – I’ve often heard different pronunciations from Scottish people, so it doesn’t surprise me that you heard something different in Glasgow Central :cool:

            Have a good weekend – you’re garden must be the same as the rest in your village during this weather. Now’s the time to have the competition :smile:

            1. Being an East-coaster my favourite is Kilconquhar…..I’m not sure I can spell how the locals pronounce it…

            2. As an Englishman I did once suggest to my Scottish brother-in-law that the Antonine Wall was built to the south of Milngarvie as the Romans couldn’t pronounce what was on the other side of it….😂

        2. Across the pond they always mispronounce Cornwall and Worcestershire, in fact almost anywhere ending in shire…

  9. 17a leaves me somewhat mystified. The answer to me is what water does in an overful dam.

    1. Same here. And I had no idea it was a single word. Found it in Longmans but not in Collins.

    2. It’s in Chambers – part of the entry is ‘to be higher than’ and you can be certain that if Giovanni has used it the appropriate research has been completed.

  10. A very enjoyable solve, my favourite was 20d, but I also liked 3d and the topical 15a, although perhaps next Friday (to coincide with his visit) would have been even more appropriate.

    Many thanks to Giovanni and to DT, nice to see you back. A good weekend to all.

    1. Oh, I do so hope you enjoy his visit, do you think you could possibly keep him?

  11. A fairly gentle workout for a Friday perhaps; 21a was my top clue for its simplicity.
    Thanks to Giovanni, and to the returning DT for the review.

  12. IMO Giovanni set us quite a teaser today particularly in the Southeast. I wrongly bunged in battery for 18d which seemed to work but I do agree with Jane that the correct solution is a bit far-fetched. Thank you Giovanni and DT.
    I’m back to needing to fill out my name and email address with my comments – wonder why?

    1. Don’t know. I don’t have to but although I tick the box for follow up I never get any

  13. Seemed ok at first, but flawed by 18d for some reason. Liked 12a the best because it’s my favourite place! Thanks Giovanni and DT.

    1. Several seem to have a problem with 18d but I don’t understand why. The manufactured items produced by a pottery in The Potteries are known collectively as pottery.

    1. BRB – Profile – a head or portrait in a side view. Hope that helps :smile:

  14. A fairly straightforward puzzle from Mr Manley with no major hold ups in the solve.The top half went in quite quickly but the bottom half was a bit more of a tussle although I now don’t know why. I love the 10a answer – reminds me of drinks prior to a mess dinner in the RN. :smile: Whatever did crossword setters do before the current US President came to power? He appears very frequently.

    Thanks to Mr M for the puzzle and to DT for his review – nice to see you back in the Friday slot.

    Have a good weekend all.

  15. Very good. Liked the connected 11a and 6d. Also 10 12 15 and 21a and 3 and 18d. Only one that did not find favour with me was 17a. Parsed everything apart from 24a although the answer obvious. 23d was a giveaway. 16d was my last one in although obvious when the penny dropped.Thanks Giovanni and DT (jealous of the visit to Le Jardin – perhaps we could have a bloggers’ gathering in Hyeres)

  16. Splendid puzzle as usual from the Don. Not too taxing. **/****. 12a was my favourite.

    Don’t know if anyone else has been having some issues getting onto the blog. I wasn’t able to get on to yesterday’s at all – not even today. And today’s wasn’t accessible to me until about an hour ago. Might be AOL playing up – any one else? or ideas??

    1. … also, cannot get today’s Toughie blog – but that may well be because it isn’t ready or not being done today. Anyone got it yet, though??

  17. Shouldn’t 20a be the plural of animal and not the possessive form? I may be wrong but it works better for me.

    1. First rule of crossword solving – ignore all punctuation within the clue. In this case, probably some minor obfuscation from Giovanni.

    2. It’s a contraction of ‘animal is’ rather than the possessive form – and Senf is right, too.

      1. I think it works with or without the apostrophe but probably better without it

  18. Good fun from Giovanni this hot Friday. Took a while to get going but then it all fell into place very nicely. The long anagrams were a huge help for checkers, and 3d was a particular favourite of many. 2* /3.5* overall.

    Thanks to The Don and a returning DT.

    1. 3d was one of my favourites too but I do think we have seen it recently

  19. Not a walk in the park for me and like some of the other bloggers struggled with 17a / 18d and 18d was the last in, also had difficulty with the word play at 12a, must be the heat? A typical Friday puzzle enjoyable but not the most sparkling Giovanni offering for me, but still good.

    Clue of the day: Thought 3d was neat

    Rating 3.5* / 3*

    Thanks to DT and Giovanni.

  20. I really enjoyed this benign offering from Giovanni. I only had to enlist my friend google’s help for 11a. I feel quite chuffed after yesterday’s total failure.
    My fave was the “problem” 18d, I thought the vision of the Queen getting “potty” most amusing.
    Thanks to Giovanni and to Deep Threat, welcome back after such a long absence.

  21. Only held up slightly by 17a, otherwise a fun and straightforward puzzle. It needed to be. I didn’t get home until 3.00 am this morning after having a tyre blow out. I had to wait four hours for a recovery truck to come and pick me up from a slip road onto the M1. Gone are the days when you would have a spare tyre. Many thanks DT and Giovanni.

    1. I’m glad to hear that you managed to get home safely after your tyre blow out Florence.. I totally agree with the return of a ‘real’ spare wheel. Hope you’re none the worse after your experience.

      1. Thank you for your concern. All fine. New tyre was put on this morning. I felt a bit annoyed about the whole thing. The old tyre wasn’t very old. Just one of those things. The main thing was that everyone was safe.

  22. Got there in the end ..hurrah! But took a while.

    I am not familiar with 17a but it had to be what it was.

    Thanks to the setter and to Deep Threat .

  23. Nice crossword **/*** 😃 Favourites were 12a and 14d 😉 Thanks to DT and to Giovanni Just hope that I finish the crossword before 3pm tomorrow 😜

  24. A fairly straightforward end to the working week, */** for difficulty perhaps. My only trouble came at the end with the Tory MP because, perhaps it’s just my age, but he was the very last one I thought of…

  25. We did not like 11a of course. Wordplay was obvious but really rather unfair to anyone not from UK. Spent a little time trying to work out how to remove the letters N and G from the word ANGER before the penny dropped.
    Pleasant solve.
    Thanks Giovanni and welcome back DT.

  26. A bit on the tough side, mostly due to a slow brain day. Kept trying to include farm as part of the answer in 12a (from the song) but of course that didn’t work. Like several others I had to Google Lancashire towns, so learnt something today. Apart from 17a, a bit under par that one, an enjoyable puzzle from Giovanni. Thanks to Deep Threat for hints.

  27. Feels like it was only yesterday that Mrs DT and you came to visit.
    Haven’t seen the time pass.
    Didn’t have any problems with 18d as I can’t see anything more handmade than pottery. Reminds me of that mytic scene in Ghost.
    The long anagrams just unfolded naturally. No circles needed.
    Had to check the town as I didn’t know it.
    Thanks to the Don and it’s good to see you back on duty DT.

  28. Personally I think “up once” in 10a is unnecessary and confusing. ‘”Mac’s place”, despite the question mark, is a bit iffy, as is “party” for disco.

  29. Don’t normally do the Tele, but found this in the café and enjoyed it. I was impressed with the precision of the cryptic grammar, but reading here that it’s from Giovanni it’s no surprise. Loved the self-portrait of 3d. I took monster to mean “a creature unusual in some way”, but I can’t find very convincing dictionary support for a definition like that which would cover ET. Perhaps chosen more for its surface relevance?
    In 8a, I don’t see why it’s “yesteryear’s vehicle”. Uber haven’t completely taken over quite yet. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hackney_carriage

  30. Very entertainig.
    Liked the old fashioned taxi in 8A and the rather unkind (?) allusion to the President in 15A.

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