DT 28839 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

DT 28839 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28839 (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.

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    Cloth that’s small for top of beer mug (10)
Replace the first letter (top) of [b]EER with S(mall) and add a mug or fool

6a    Prevent onset of bee sting (4)
A three-letter verb meaning to prevent followed by the initial letter (onset) of B[ee]

10a    Brand of computer program mostly needed for this product (5)
Most of a small (computer) program

11a    Improve a financial centre’s dishonesty (9)
A verb meaning to improve or repair is followed by the A from the clue and the name given to the UK’s financial centre

13a    Overall, Henman’s head over heels in love (7)
A word meaning overall or total, Mr Henman’s first name and the S from ‘S are all reversed (head over heels)

14a    One engaged by president is put in to stop gloating over victory (12)
I (one) inside the surname of the President of the USA followed by IS from the clue inside a verb meaning to stop gives an adjective meaning gloating over victory

21a    What might keep a listener warm? (7)

Just a picture clue for this one!

23a    East German with lots of money, one sticking their head in the sand? (7)
The German word for east is followed by an adjective meaning with lots of money

27a    Food served here is appetiser, fresh, penny off (10)
An anagram (fresh) of IS A[p]PETISER without (off) one P(enny)


1d    What might be sung in shed (6)
Two definitions – he first being a song usually sung by sailors

3d    Kit that’s sillier yet working without batteries (5-9)
Some kit with an anagram (working) of SILLIER YET around it (without)

4d    Clegg’s friend certain to show calmness (9)
UK-based solvers will remember Clegg’s friend, wonderfully played by the late Bill Owen, from Last of the Summer Wine – just add a word meaning certain

5d    Olympic medallist taking time off from sport (5)
The surname of this gold-winning Olympic heptathlete is derived by dropping the T(ime) from a sport

7d    Miss flying air taxi that’s set out about five (8)
This Miss that flies an aeroplane comes from an anagram (that’s set out) of AIR TAXI around the Roman numeral for five

9d    They’re often blocks landlords with money to invest put up front (7,7)

15d    Scent what Presbyterians oppose vocally (9)
Sounds like (vocally) a hostile term for Roman Catholicism

20d    Attack daily grind enthusiastically at first (6)
… this daily is a cleaner (or as Chambers says “a non-resident servant, especially a cleaning woman”!

22d    One old prime minister or another gets a kind of bread (5)
The surname of two old prime ministers (one old prime minister or another) is followed by the A from the clue

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: tiered+rink+with+German+bread=tea, a drink with jam and breadthat took a bit of working out!

68 comments on “DT 28839 (Hints)

  1. This was really good for a Sat Prize – great clues, a decent challenge and very enjoyable. Favs of a first-rate bunch: 1a, 14a, 27a and 4d. 3* / 4*

  2. I thought this was quite a testing prize puzzle, with the NW corner holding on to its secrets the longest. 15d was my favourite, and I thoroughly enjoyed the challenge. Thanks to our setter and BD.

    Off to Wasps v Exeter now.

  3. Hells Bells, that was Tough! Very satisfying to complete even if I needed the hints to fully parse two clues -1d and 20d. Great fun though, my COTD was 12a with MiD for 3d.
    I take it that the first 3 letters of 23a refers to a German word? Never did German at school so I struggle with anything other than THE!
    Thx to all.

    1. Failed German O level here and as with many others my german teacher will always be known as Hitler. But the word in question here is one of the few I have retained.

        1. Coincidently regarding 4d my german teacher was actually a Clegg if Dame memory is not being fickle. Time flies like an arrow but fruit flies like a banana…

  4. Thoroughly enjoyable with lots of clever clues with 15D the cleverest .

    Needed the hint to check that 3D , last in , was correct especially as it was not a complete anagram .

    I suppose I will not be alone in firstly putting an alternative answer for 21A .

    Thanks to everyone .

      1. But I’d be willing to bet my usual 50p that quite a lot of the nation’s solvers had the same first thought

        1. Me too – not even sure it’s correct but it was a bung-in at the end. Thanks BD for hints. 1a foxed me completely until I read the blog. Agree that NW corner was quite tricky.
          Thanks to BD and setter for a good Saturday workout. Shamefully I found the quickie quite obscure.😫

    1. Just to reassure you, KFB, your supposition that someone else would try an alternative answer for 21a was correct but I soon discovered the error of my ways… I agree with you – it was an enjoyable puzzle. Incidentally, Big Dave and Crypticsue beat me to it!

  5. As YS the NW held onto it’s secrets the longest. A bit of UK sport and ancient telly GK didn’t put me off.
    15d was nice when finally parsed (different enumeration in my dictionary put me off) and so was 7d. Loved the hint for 9d even if it was a bit SHOUTY!.
    I also confess to getting 21a wrong at first.
    Thanks BD and setter.

  6. Disappointingly, for me, this was the second Saturday curate’s egg in a row with a few answers for which I needed BD’s explanations.

    Favourite, a toss-up between 25a and 2d.

    Thanks to the setter and BD.

  7. Excellent Saturday puzzle which I totally enjoyed. 4d & 5d were my favourites until 15d!! Many thanks to the setter

  8. Obviously out on a limb here but I thought this was a bit of an oddity with a few surface reads that caused raised eyebrows – 12a for example. I would also venture that 15d is not a synonym of ‘scent’ although it may well produce same.

    I did like 11a & 20d with a nod to 9d despite its surface.

    Thanks to Mr Ron and to BD for the club.

    PS I would recommend today’s NTSPP to anyone who has a bit of time to spare.

  9. I rattled through in fairly quick time, albeit, I muffed 21a initially, and muddled up the last four letters of 27a when I keyed them in.

    Then I got to 19d and my brain seized … and remains so, even after correcting the last letter. Maybe I’m overthinking it, but I’m clueless atm. Perhaps a spot of gardening will help.

  10. Excellent Saturday fun. All went in quite smoothly today. I particularly liked 1a, 1d, and 4d with top spot going to 15d by a couple of lengths.

  11. I really enjoyed this challenge. For me it was probably the best crossword this week which is unusual for a Saturday.
    1a was my favourite.
    Thanks to the setter, and to BD for the hints.

  12. This has taken me ages :phew: I found it really difficult – really good too, as was the Quickie – liked the pun.
    I’m another one to get the second bit of 21a wrong but 22d sorted that out – I don’t see why BD says the wrong answer doesn’t fit the definition.
    1a and 3d took for ever, just about.
    4d had me completely foxed – wrong Clegg (the only one I’ve ever heard of) but Mr Google knew the right one.
    I think I’m missing something in the pronunciation of 15d.
    I particularly liked 1 and 11a and 1 and 20d.
    Thanks to whoever set this one and to BD.

    1. Put on your beret , at a jaunty angle , of course , and pronounce 15d without the “*” . Should lead you to a religious word & theme .

      1. It would never have occurred to me to pronounce 15d with a *! I get the religious chap but the rest of it is still a mystery – oh dear – I am being terribly dim today.

        1. Ok . My excuse was that the letter is revealed by the intersecting clue also that the answer is known by many but not the reason .

          1. … only if you have solved the intersecting clue. If I let one through I can’t justify stopping the dreadful “I have a?b?c?” construct..

  13. No walk in the park this Saturday testing but very enjoyable. Thought there was some excellent clues that needed unravelling very carefully, good examples being 1a and 3d that like Kath seemed to take forever, but got there in the end. Had the obvious answer in for 21a that was wrong delaying 3d. 5d made me laugh a brilliant clue. Initially thought the puzzle was not that tough and it was me struggling but pleased to see others also found it challenging. A top prize puzzle in my opinion.

    Clues of the day: 1a / 5d

    Rating: 3.5* / 4*

    Thanks to BD and the setter.

  14. Blimey that was hard! The south half went in quite quickly, but I sweated bullets in the north. The only clue solved in the north was 4d, remembered the Clegg and the programme, just had to google it. I visited the site for a hint, got 1a and went from there, but it took forever.
    Fave without doubt is 15d, but 4d was close behind.
    Thanks to setter, enjoyable battle, and to BD for his hints.

    1. Few blogs this day, so I assume that most people found it v difficult, like me!
      (Except the clever ones already above, that is)
      Thanks BD for a couple of hints to enable completeness…I also fell for the 21a trap-out with the ‘blodger’!
      Can we have it a bit easier…?

      1. I found it extremely difficult, I was stuck halfway and only solved it by getting the hint for 1a and LOADS of electronic help. I thought the south was much more friendly than the north.

      2. I’ve emailed the completed
        result to the DT every week since 27199 I.e for over 5 years but couldn’tl have done it without BD -So a bit of a cheat really! Had a notebook once. However it gets me out on the bike to get the paper every Saturday.
        Hope I’m not in trouble though…

  15. Hi,

    Just finished, but in my defence I was doing other stuff so had to put the crrossword down and return to it later in the day. 15d was my favourite once I worked out the answer.

    Always feel my Saturday is not complete if I am unable to finish the crossword. Although sometimes I finish it on Sunday and just marvel at those who complete it early on Saturday morning and wonder how do they do it ?????

    1. Your comment went into moderation because you used a different spelling of your name (2 Rs instead of 1 R)

  16. ***/****. Satisfying solve although quite a lot of pregnant pauses. Favourite was 1a. Thanks to all. Decent amount of rainfall at last.

  17. I had a few words to say after my first pass at this puzzle and none of them very polite. However, I stuck with it and very slowly it came together, although I did need a lot of hints, thanks BD. It was too hard for me to call it fun, and I needed Mr Google to finish, so definitely above my pay grade. I did enjoy the challenge, although most of my answers were from the checkers rather than the clues. Did think 15a was clever though. Never heard of 3d. I had a different word for 21a to start with. COTD was 9d, with BD’s hint being quite brilliant. The Quick was tough in places too.

  18. Thanks to the setter and to Big Dave for the hints. A very enjoyable puzzle, but very tricky. I couldn’t find a start at the top, so the bottom half went in first. 1a made me laugh, as did 4d. Last in was 3d, I realised it was a partial anagram, but needed the hints to get the rest of the fodder. Favourite was 15d. Was 4*/4* for me. Very satisfying solve.

  19. Three quarters of this puzzle flew in but I was significantly held up in the NW and needed the hint for 1ac, without which I would probably still be staring vacantly at blank squares. Once 1ac was in the rest of the NW fell steadily with my LOI being 3d.

    Thanks to BD for 1ac and thanks to the setter for the challenge.

  20. I also found it really difficult .That difficulty lay in the somewhat obscured definitions , such as in 8d and 3d .
    I wonder , if as we see , Chris lancaster appears to take an interest in comments , whether the new “Telegraph Puzzles ” will allow those of us who do the puzzle online to be included in the prize entrants ? Just a thought .
    15d gets my cotw.
    Thanks to all concerned .

  21. I am relieved to find I am in good company in having struggled with this tough cruciverbal challenge. NW corner was biggest problem. It seems the competition crosswords are becoming tougher these days. My Fav was 7d. Hope for rather more plain-sailing tomorrow. Thank you Mysteron and BD. 😥

  22. I don’t expect anyone to pick up on this at such a late stage but yesterday was manic. I DID manage to get the crossword completed except for 15d which still eludes me. Maddening. Google didn’t help either. I shall have to go to church in a couple of hours and see what my fellow cruciverbalists have to say (we always compare notes on Sunday morning). References to berets and not sounding a ‘*’ were no help. Obviously not a word in my CofE experience. 🤢

  23. Oh for goodness sake! The penny has just dropped. I was looking for something much more insulting. At least I can go to church with head held high (ish).

    1. Nope. Still staring at 15d over the cornflakes and still waiting for that Damascene moment, despite all the help by hints and bloggers, so well done Daisy Girl. Ah well, two short planks, etc …

      1. Concentrate on finding the answer, which should be easy as you now have five of the nine letters, including the important final letter. When you have done that, experiment with the homophone (beret and all!)

        1. Good grief. Finally got there. Better (very) late than never. Thank you. Can’t stand the stuff either!

    2. It was much the same for me. Nice bit of help above about pronunciation but I still couldn’t get it for several seconds. Not good for me, raised a Catholic.
      I still don’t understand 3d though. I think I have the second word but nothing fits with the letters I have for the first word. Perhaps I’ll use t’internet, which I never! do. Grr.

      1. … or you could just hover over the illustration under the hint! The answer is not something that will be part of the vocabulary of most non-military people.

        1. Thanks. I tried that but can’t seem to do it on my tablet.
          I think I’ve guessed the answer that makes 12a wrong and doesn’t fit with a word for kit. Perhaps I’d better just sleep on it again.

        2. Thanks. I tried that but can’t seem to do it on my tablet.
          I think I’ve guessed the answer that makes 12a wrong and doesn’t fit with a word for kit. Perhaps I’d better just sleep on it again.

          I have it!!

    3. ” I was looking for something much more insulting” – I took the definition from Chambers – a hostile term for Roman Catholicism or whatever seems to savour of it

  24. Still can’t really get 19d. I get one of the definitions, but can’t see the other (unless I’ve got the answer wrong of course…quite possible…). I get it for a shorter version of the word, but not the full six letters…

    1. If you look up your shorter version in the dictionary, then you should see a definition of the longer version required for the solution

    2. It’s not a double definition. BD has underlined the single definition. The wordplay is the daily followed by two ‘first letters’.

  25. Hard – a real challenge. In parts, it was nearly as hard as that “Hardest Ever” in the Daily Mail last April.
    More like that, please.

Comments are closed.