DT 28803 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28803 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28803 (Hints)

Der Samstag Kreuzworträtselclub
mit Tilsit

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

Gute Morgen aus Jena!

Your end-of-month Saturday crossword club is brought to from the charming town of Jena in the east of Germany. Your host is here for a week at a Study School organised by the local University under the Open University.

As those of you who follow me on social media, the journey here was not without problems. The initial coach journey from Victoria to Paris was delayed. I arrived at the coach station at 3pm for n 8pm depart. I was transferred from the moiblity lounge at 7:45 by which time the coach had been boarded and filled and the driver refused to take me. This caused a huge delay waiting for another coach and I missed all the planned connections, meaning when I got to Paris I had to pay for new tickets to Jena. Each of those trains were delayed by over half an hour. The result was I arrived at my accommodation in Jena at 11pm, 36 hours after I left my home! However, a restful day yesterday and a lovely meal last night with wonderful open-air musicians nearby has me in a much better humour.

Today’s puzzle seems at the harder end of the Saturday scale with a couple of tricky clues. On several occasions I had to back track and remove an answer and change for another. I’m guessing it’s by one of the Mysterons.

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.


3. Old money I study for monk (10)
A pre-Euro foreign currency goes with a way of saying I study to give you the name for one of the orders of monks.

10. Something to stop a blue building (8)
The name for some things that stops, as in a bottle opening, is added to A and a little word meaning blue or depressed.

12. Tender name designed to be term of affection (10)
One of the best clues today; a clever apposite anagram of two of the words that give an example of what the definition is.

14. Shallow jar and cups Enid replaced (6-7)
A new expression on me. Someone who is a bit empty-headed and having no depth is revealed by taking a word meaning to jar and grate and adding something with cups (!!) and an anagram of Enid.

22. Maiden being absorbed in tale that’s wild (6)
The abbreviation for a maiden goes inside a word for a tale.

25. Charlie and Romeo’s plant (6)
A letter from its description in the NATO phonetic alphabet plus what Romeo is, both in fiction and as a type of person.

26. Those present at ball about two hours before midnight? (10)
Another nice clue. Take the word ‘at’ and another name for a ball and place them round the time of night two hours before the witching hour.

Not too many opportunities for pictures, so have another of Jena. This time an invention of one of its most famous characters, Carl Zeiss. Down

1. Like a newspaper, perhaps, having a right to support post (8)
Another difficult word some may not know. An adjective that describes how some newspapers are laid out laid out is can be found by taking the indefinite article and an abbreviation for right and placing them after a word for a type of post.

3. What might be used for touching proposal? (6)
This was one where I entered a plausible answer from checking letters, only to find I couldn’t finish that corner. There are two definitions here. Notice the space between the underlinings. A word for a proposal is also what some creatures use to touch and sense.

5. Refreshing drink – another one is a different matter (3,2,3)
The name for a drink that can refresh you (not me, I can’t stand the stuff!). If you put the word ‘another’ in front of it, it literally means something different!

15. Hen that’s spotted in the garden? (8)
A two-word cryptic way of describing a hen can also (when the two words are joined) mean something found in most gardens that has spots on it.

17. Doctor and surgeon in terrible need forced medicine down (8)
Another new word on me. Something that means to have forced medication down an animals throat. The abbreviation for a doctor then needs the one for a surgeon to go inside an anagram (terrible) of need to give this form of treatment. You might like to check this way of doing it…..


19. Game cut short when American leaves (6)
The name for a card game (my favourite!) is found by taking a word that means to cut something short and removing an abbreviation for American.

23. Man turned up during final attack (4)
A hidden answer but reversed in the clue. Look for a man’s name.

So that’s your lot for the day. I will be around to administer naughty step sessions if extra hints are given, as will some of the other mods. My course starts later this afternoon and I will be throwing myself into that.

So from the beautiful town of Jena, it’sTschüß!

And finally some music, probably the most famous German pop song ever..

The Crossword Club is now open.

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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!

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The Quick Crossword pun: crew+tuns=croutons

51 comments on “DT 28803 (Hints)

  1. I thought my crossword bone would have atrophied after nearly 3 weeks of watching cycling but I managed pretty well. 16d favourite mainly because of childhood hols there.
    Vielen danke Tilsit.
    You may want to revise hint for 3a as it gives a bit too much away.

    1. I’ve tweaked the hint for Tilsit, just in case he’s doing some studying/sightseeing etc at the moment

  2. Commiserations re your journey. Hope the return goes smoothly .

    Enjoyed today’s with 15d favourite but lots of goodies . Cannot parse the surgeon but into 17d otherwise all fine ( except for the overdue rain).

    Geraint looks all set to win , no doubting Thomas now .

    Thanks to everyone .

    1. Yes, I’ve been fearing all week that Team Sky would pull some stunt to manoeuvre their favourite into first place but it looks as though Geraint is destined for a famous and well-deserved (Welsh) victory. He must be nailed on to be Sports Personality of the Year.

      1. I am sure our reviewer has come across the answer before but not this meaning of it.

    2. It’s the qualification that all medical students must achieve and is listed as a joint degree for all doctors in this country.
      I enjoyed this puzzle. Thanks to all involved in that and the blog.

  3. A mildish Sat Prize with good clues and enjoyable enough. I’ve never come across the expression at 14a before. 2* / 3*

  4. This was completed in a somewhat higgledy-piggledy fashion but got there in the end. 17d in that context was new one on me too as was 14a which really is somewhat contrived. No standout Fav. Thank you Mysteron and Tilsit to whom commiserations on a far from gute fahrt (are you stocking up on binoculars/spectacles bargains whilst in Jena?). I imagine Jean-Luc for one will not go along with the Quickie pun pronunciation!

    1. It’s what they’d call them in Barnsley.

      Actually they’d call them ‘bits of bread’ ;)

  5. Oh dear, Tilsit, a far from Gute Fahrt. Hope the return leg is better.
    Meanwhile, enjoy your Study School.

    Got through this one without electronic aid or recourse to the hints, though had to check that 14a was a word.

    I liked 12a best.

    Thanks to the setter und danke schön, unser lieber Tilsit.

  6. Only held up by the unfamiliar 14a and forgetting the surgeon in 17d, although 1d hardly tripped off the tongue either!
    Enjoyed the solve and gave top billing to 12&26a plus 15d.

    Thanks to Mr Ron and to Tilsit for making the time to add the review despite his hectic schedule. I hope you enjoy both Jena and your study course.

    PS Had a good singalong with Nena although in English!

  7. At first sight, I thought that I was going to have a struggle with this puzzle but, once I got going, I found that it wasn’t as difficult as I’d first thought. 14a was a new expression for me too – as was the answer for 17a – and I’ve no doubt that many have reached for Chambers today…

  8. Ich wünsche Ihnen viel Spaß in Jena und hoffe, dass die furchtbare Hinreise Sie nicht so sehr geschlaucht hat!

    Enjoyed this puzzle this morning. Cooler weather must have made the brain more active! 14 ac took a while to fathom and I too was not aware of the secondary meaning of 17d.

    Just a small grouse, but one which has niggled me for a while. This puzzle, as with most Saturday ones, I managed to complete without recourse to the hints which I use to check my answers. Then I scroll down and am amused/enlightened by the comments of others before submitting my solution to the DT Winning any prizes is really not a primary concern but I just question whether it is really fair that those of us who have used no external help should stand the same chance of winning as those who have used the various hints, including pictures(!) which make the whole challenge so much easier. Is the PRIZE puzzle not thereby devalued?

    I await now with some trepidation, if the whole of this has been published, the torrents of ire directed at me and am anticipating months ( a life time?) on the naughty step. Es ist mir doch Wurscht.

    1. Danke für Ihre freundlichen Kommentare!

      I think many would agree with you. However we try to make people still use their brains with the hints. However they could visit other sites and just get the answers. Last time I was on a certain site, one person asked for help with fifteen clues over a 12 hour period. No one on there batted an eyelid.

      Most of the blogs have an embargo on answers until the solution is published and as a result those posts get fewer views and comments. Most crosswords are here today, gone tomorrow puzzles.

      I think the way we do it is ok. But I do support your view.

    2. Perhaps your comments can be summarised by :-
      “Should the hints be delayed until after the closing date ?”
      Good point .
      However , these days , there are so many avenues that give outside help .

    3. I always try to complete the crossword before looking at blog, but because I rarely finish without using extra help like thesaurus, dictionary and supertoy I never consider submitting into prize draw. Thanks to setter and Tilsit.

    4. I never do either if I need any hints at all, so haven’t submitted many, but I do go to find the answer if all else fails so that I can work out how it fits the clue, as that’s how I learn. For me its about the brain workout and enjoying reading everyone’s comments on the blog than winning a prize.

  9. A fair contest today for a prize puzzle. The newish or difficult words were certainly gettable through the wordplay, so no complaints. At the trickier end of the setting spectrum, perhaps? 12a is a terrific anagram and 15d has a good surface. Lots to enjoy.

    Many thanks to our setter and to Tilsit.

  10. Nice puzzle Not too difficult. I hadn’t come across the 14a expression, but it couldn’t be anything else. Likewise with CH, but I know it now. Commiserations Tilset on that awful journey – remember, where there’s blame there should be a claim – good luck on the way back.

  11. Sorry for your troubled journey Tilsit. I don’t think I would ever take a coach to Paris when the Eurostar is (usually) quick and cheaper than it was when first opened. Nightmare once you miss a connection the whole journey collapses. Good crossword I felt with some giveaway clues/answers. As others have said there were some others thrown in the mix which delayed my overall time. Having said it was below average time. 14a like others I had not heard of despite getting the second word and the general idea. BRB confirmed. 17d I built up from the checkers. Would not have thought of this meaning but guessed it. I was left with some in SW which quickly fell into place after I got 15d with the help of the first letter. Last in was 1d. Not heard of the word but fair clue as it was possible to build. Favourites 8 10 23 and 25a and 2 and 18d. Thanks setter and to you Tilsit for solving and hinting despite adversity. Always like to check my parsing with the hints and to read and learn from all comments

  12. Wow I found this one quite tough and I had never heard of a couple of the words/phrases though I did get a giggle out of the clever clue for the second word for 14 across. Also got a huge laugh out of ‘how to give your can a pill’ link. I am still completely stuck on 19d. Cup of tea and then I’ll come back to it.

    I had my swift trip to London last week to meet up with some very old girls, it was lovely. Long suffering hubby is, as I type, on a flight back to Canada after his mum’s funeral, apparently he did very well with the eulogy. I think that’s enough jet setting for us for a while, when it comes to jet lag we just don’t bounce back like we used to…..

    1. You will kick yourself when the penny drops on 19d as it is one of the more straightforward clues

  13. Mostly straightforward but with two or three lesser known answers just to make me think. 15d did the business so that is my favourite.
    Thanks to the setter, and to Tilsit for the hints. I’ve always found the mixture of trains and buses to be awkward. They just don’t seem to like one another.

  14. Ha, finished this without resorting to your hints. I have not heard the term 14a but it had to be. I liked 10a and 1d. 20a made me smile. Thank you for a very pleasant hour after lunch in a much fresher atmosphere after last nights rain. Trouble was, we didn’t see the lunar eclipse here in Cambridge because of the cloud cover.

    1. I keep waiting to see a daisy appear by your name – have you figured out how to do it yet?

      1. No, I did ask if I could change the rather miserable pink triangle but the hoops involved were too much. Shall wait for visiting grandson or any passing toddler who will be better at IT than I.

  15. Nice to hear from you Tilsit, it’s been a while.

    Puzzle was fine, thanks all.

  16. Never heard of 1d or 14a, apart from that no problems.
    Congratulations Geraint Thomas, wonderful achievement.
    Thanks all

  17. I really enjoyed this, though I did have to use electronic help to get 14a.
    The meaning of 17d is mainly used in farm animals, cows, goats and horses, etc.
    I rather liked 24a, so that’s my fave.
    Thanks to our Saturday setter and to Tilsit for his hints and tips.
    Maybe I should get out more, I’ve never heard of the “most famous German pop song” ever!

    1. I’ll bet you’ve heard of Autobahn by Kraftwerk (or perhaps even Tour de France, to be topical)

        1. I was probably listening to that when I should have been reading Little Dorrit – that might have helped me with a bit of this week’s NTSPP.

  18. Congrats to Geraint who has secured the TDF.
    I imagine Dutch may encounter a few over refreshed locals on his Welsh weekend.
    ( If they haven’t decamped on masse to the Elysian Fields -Last one out of the Valleys please turn the lights off!)
    Re Old Cruciverbalist’s comment I think I concur with Tilsit and KFB that there are so many avenues for unscrupulous completists to get answers without having to work at it that it would make no difference. I think the way this place operates is a fair balance of some hints for prize puzzles and has been a better place to learn the intricacies of cryptic crosswords. I have used answer bank etc in the past (in the links at the bottom of the blog) but much prefer to be educated here than force fed answers I haven’t earned elsewhere. The friendly banter, humorous comments musical interludes and cat and other pics help too.
    When I submit I usually do it electronically via my phone and if by some fluke won I would only qualify for an Amazon voucher. I would have to use it to buy a Telegraph Pen as that is the prize I would covet.

    1. I can boast of having won twice (that sounds odd) over the course of many years. First win was a pack of DT cards very highly prized. Second about three years ago was the pen. My husband says I got very objectionable flashing it about …………..

  19. Thanks to the setter and to Tilsit for the hints. A very enjoyable puzzle, but quite tricky. Last in was 17d, which I guessed from the checkers, and therefore managed to work out the abbreviation for surgeon. Had never heard of this meaning of the word (the answer). I liked 14a,but my favourite was 15d, which took me a while to get. Was 3*/3* for me.

  20. A little tricky in places, overall **/*** for difficulty, and enjoyable throughout. Last in 14ac followed by 1d.

  21. Throughly enjoyable solve – nothing too challenging – tho bit of head scratching in places added to the fun!!

  22. The first PC in a while as I’m up to my ears renovating my old Cornish cottage. My brain has been somewhat addled with juggling all the work, and I’m living in a building site. However, a pleasant if wet afternoon cycling around Burrator reservoir with my two young grandchildren must have cleared the cryptic cobwebs, and I was very pleased to find that I didn’t need the hints for the answers I had, but could have done with some for the two or three I didn’t. 1d and 14a were not straightforward and I plugged in 6d without parsing it until I realised there were more letters in the abbreviation. 15d was my favourite and brought a smile. Many thanks to the setter and hats off to Tilsit for providing the hints under such extreme circumstances. I hope the journey home is more straightforward.

  23. Gosh , Tilsit , I am so sorry to hear of your horrific journey .I am amazed at how well you’ve coped and managed to stay cheerful and even do this blog .If it had been me , I might still be spitting and fuming .
    I thought the puzzle was decidedly odd , but I persevered , with considerable help from my Chambers .
    Nothing really stood out as a favourite .
    Thanks to Tilsit and the setter .

  24. 14a – have exhausted all my synonyms for jar or grate, as suggested above – can anyone offer another “non- naughty- step” help ?

    1. Hard not to, it’s in the dictionary or a google of ‘jar’.
      It’s not something I had ever heard of before.

      1. Thanks HIYD – I shall probably be banned for life for saying this – but, anything to do with xxxxxxx ? If so, it’s a pretty ridiculous phrase, IMHO !!

  25. Blimey – found that a bit tough not helped by 1d and 14a but otherwise enjoyable.

    Had a Doh! moment on 26a and 10a raised a smile


  26. Just reading back about using hints etc.

    Some weeks I use them just for checking while other weeks, like this one with 1d, I need a hint or two but over the many weeks I have read this blog – long before I ever posted – I have definitely got better as my knowledge of the obscure and all the usual ‘tricks’ has increased.

    Preferable, I think, to just testing, but not expanding, a ‘base’ level of knowledge and experience.


  27. It seems most found 1d & 14a tricky so thanks to Tilsit for the hints!
    This week’s was quicker for me than over the last couple of weeks so that was a relief! Liked 5d and 26a particularly. We have had family for the weekend and for the next week so I was glad to finish during Saturday before the onslaught ! I hope Mysteron is kind next weekend!!

  28. Sorry to hear about your travels. Amazing, usually takes me ages but found this one ok. Maybe being a surgeon helped me do 18d. I did have to check 15a.

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