DT 28847 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28847

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28847

Hints and tips by Mr K

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


Hello, everyone.  Today's back-pager continues the recent Tuesday trend of delivering enjoyable puzzles combining smooth surfaces, helpful definitions, and some devious wordplay.  I'm not sure how to assign a difficulty rating to a puzzle like this – perhaps 2* if you stop the clock when the grid is filled, and 3* if you're not satisfied until every clue is parsed.  No doubts about the enjoyment rating though.  It was well above average.

In the hints below most indicators are italicized and definitions are underlined.  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.  Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.



1a    Improvises as daughter inside bails out (2-4)
AD-LIBS:  The genealogical abbreviation for daughter is inserted in (inside) an anagram (out) of BAILS

4a    What's needed to log in American before touring Vietnam? (8)
USERNAME:  An abbreviation for American is followed by a literary 'before' containing (touring = going around) a contraction of Vietnam

10a   Pompous crowing involving doctor in charge (9)
BOMBASTIC:  Crow or brag containing (involving) a usual doctor, all followed by the abbreviation for in charge

11a   Player's agent ignoring fine (5)
ACTOR:  An agent or transactor of business for another person has the pencil abbreviation for fine deleted (ignoring fine)

12a   Type of furry creature –- work with very large number (7)
OPOSSUM:  Put together the usual musical work, a clothing abbreviation for very large, and number or amount

13a   Annual publication bound by local man, a craftsman (7)
ALMANAC:  The answer is hidden in (bound by) the remainder of the clue

14a   Victor leaking wife's secret (5)
INNER:  A victor, minus (leaking) the abbreviation for wife

15a   Former sweetheart, model, dancing round apartment, briefly (3,5)
OLD FLAME:  An anagram (dancing) of MODEL is wrapped round all but the last letter (…, briefly) of a synonym for apartment 

18a   A theologian facing ruin, then Greek character backed supplement (8)
ADDENDUM:  Assemble A from the clue, the usual theologian, ruin or destruction, and the reversal (backed) of the best Greek letter (best because, as Kitty has pointed out and the BRB confirms, it's a homophone of a form of feline communication)

20a   Husband sitting in pleasant recess (5)
NICHE:  The abbreviation of husband inserted in (sitting in) pleasant or agreeable

23a   Western flea, unusually large thing? (7)
WHOPPER:  Cement together the abbreviation for western and a noun for a leaping animal, which I suppose includes the flea

25a   Conspirator died close to huge waterfall (7)
CASCADE:  Join together a Roman senator who conspired against Julius Caesar, the abbreviation for died, and the last letter of (close to) HUGEI had to reverse engineer the conspirator from the clue after obtaining the answer from the helpful definition.  He's the chap with the big knife standing behind Caesar in this painting by Piloty


26a   Band in bad taste originally, upon reflection (5)
TROOP:  The reversal (upon reflection) of the union of bad or weak and the first letter (originally) of TASTE 

27a   Simon, perhaps, having tot with painter right away (9)
DRAMATIST:  A tot of whisky, for example, is followed by a synonym of painter with the single letter for right deleted (right away).  I expect that the setter had in mind this Simon who died a few weeks ago

28a   Ritz, say, providing more comfortable time for male (8)
HOTELIER:  An adjective meaning more comfortable has the abbreviation for male replaced by the physics symbol for time (time for male).  '…, say' is indicating that Mr Ritz is a definition by example of the answer.  Here's another example…

29a   Member of the clergy in park by hill (6)
RECTOR:  Glue together an informal contraction for a type of park and a hill or rocky height



1d    Delicious food in the morning? Bishop more cheerful, we hear (8)
AMBROSIA:  Fuse together an abbreviation for 'in the morning', the chess abbreviation for bishop, and a homophone (…we hear) of an adjective meaning more cheerful.  With my accent the homophone isn't

2d    Satirise a politician taken in by simple-minded person (7)
LAMPOON:  A from the clue and the usual politician are inserted together in (taken in by) a simple-minded person

3d    Head removed from fish covered in cheese in restaurant (9)
BRASSERIE:  A brightly-coloured bony fish with its first letter deleted (head removed) is contained by (covered in) a soft French cheese

5d    Radical comes to fancy party member (6,8)

6d    Newly-created earl, leader of men in field (5)
REALM:  An anagram (newly-created) of EARL with the first letter of (leader of) MEN appended

7d    Word of opposite meaning -- not many for changing (7)
ANTONYM:  An anagram (for changing) of NOT MANY.  No anagrams for ages, and then three arrive together.  A missed opportunity for clues involving buses  

8d    What could be nicer? Hotel upgrade (6)
ENRICH:  This is getting silly.  An anagram (what could be …) of NICER is followed by the letter represented by hotel in the NATO phonetic alphabet

9d    Small cap designed to meet the needs of duke crossing battle site (8,6)
STAMFORD BRIDGE:  The anagram glut has come to an end, for here we have a mega-charade.  Take a breath, and then concatenate the clothing abbreviation for small, an informal contraction of a (3, 1'7) cap, a (3) preposition meaning 'designed to meet the needs of', the abbreviation for duke, and a crossing over a river or a road (for example).  I initially thought that the setter had in mind a site of Premier League football battles, but investigoogling in the course of writing the hints revealed that in 1066 it was also the site of a battle against some invading Norwegians.  I'll illustrate both interpretations

16d   Comes down on head creating scene (9)
LANDSCAPE:  Comes down like an aeroplane, possibly, preceding (on, in a down clue) a head or point of land jutting into the sea

17d   Rat in waste, rolling about (8)
DESERTER:  Stick together a waste or unproductive area and the reversal (rolling) of a usual word for about or concerning 

19d   Fall away, so give up (4,3)
DROP OUT:  Amalgamate a synonym of fall and away or not home

21d   Talk about run out round island in ceremonial carriage (7)
CHARIOT:  Informal talk is wrapped about the cricket abbreviation for run out after it's been wrapped round an abbreviation for island 

22d   Second look at cloth sample (6)
SWATCH:  Stitch together an abbreviation for second and look or observe

24d   Schoolchild's young dog left lying under one (5)
PUPIL:  A young dog is followed by the Roman numeral for one and the abbreviation for left appended (lying under, in a down clue)


Thanks to today’s setter (Setter A?) for a fun solve.  Today I ticked 4a and 24d because of how the answer emerged from following the wordplay, 28a because we don't see many like that, 3d for its surface, 9d for its epic scale, and 17d for 'rolling about'.  Which clues did you like best?


The Quick Crossword puns:

68 comments on “DT 28847

  1. Completely stumped by yesterday’s but today’s was a walk in the park. Couldn’t parse28a had forgotten the substitution indicator.Thaaks to setter and Mr. K
    PS where is Rabbit Dave at the Moment? Haven’t seen him lately

    1. Duno about the last few days but my bet today is that he is concentrating on The Toughie. I could be wrong. We will see later.

  2. I cannot say I enjoyed this as much as our blogger. It lacked the wow factor for me, and I still cannot parse 28a despite the hints. I did, however, like 3d.

    Thanks to our setter and Mr K.

    1. I had trouble parsing this clue even after I swapped T for M, then I twigged that Mr Ritz was one-not the hotel.

      1. Glad you twigged, because I didn’t ……thanks for the explanation, which our lovely blogger didn’t include.

  3. This would have been solved quicker if the two long answers had fallen a little easier. Quite enjoyable though. Every Tuesday I remind myself to look at the last two clues in The Quickie to see if they pair up and every Tuesday i forget.. Such is life. Thanks to all concerned.

  4. This was straight-forward whereas yesterday was a total mystery, today ***, yesterday **!! Shows how different we all are!
    Fav was 9d, could not parse 28a (thanks Mr.K.), 17d I missed that type of ‘waste’, originally bunged in ‘defector’ but the puzzle said ‘non’ when I tried to submit it, thanks again Mr.K.
    Thanks to the setter too.
    Is the Toughie doable today???

  5. Plainsailing until I reached SW where the going got tough. I seem to be bunging in more solutions these days which either indicates I am getting slower in the uptake or surfaces are not the best – I suspect the former! Surely 28a is a person rather than the Ritz for instance. Contraction in 4a is a new one on me. Thank you Mysteron and MrK.

    1. I don’t think it’s you, Angellov. It feels to me like recent Tuesday puzzles have included more complex wordplay compensated by more obvious definitions. I gave today 3* for difficulty because I was expecting that some solvers would find the grid fill straightforward but the parsing more difficult, which does seem to be the case.

  6. I went for **/**** on completion, agree with Mr K that the enjoyment rating was high today and I thought top notch cluing . Just made a note to Young Salopian re the parsing of 28a,which was my last in and which I thought was a clever clue. Shouldn’t 4a begin with America not American ?
    Anyway , a treat today, liked 10a, thanks all

    1. Hi, Beaver, and apologies for overlooking your question.

      US can also stand for American, as in ‘Starbucks is a US company’

  7. I’d agree with Mr K that the enjoyment rating was high for this one – I particularly like the word that is the answer to 10a and smiled over 15a. I’m so used to Mr T’s ‘sweetheart’ that this one caught me off guard!
    No particular favourite although, like Mr K, I applauded the use of ‘rolling about’ in 17d.

    Thanks to Mr Ron (Setter A?) and to Mr K for the blog. The soft touch here loved the pics for 12&20a.

  8. A gentle but enjoyable Tuesday offering. I can’t say any clue really stood out for me today. I couldn’t parse 28a either. Time now to crash and burn attempting the Toughie.

  9. Thanks to the setter and Mr Kitty for the review and hints. I found this quite straightforward, but very entertaining. Needed the hints to parse 25,26,28a and 17&22d. I must have been in bung-it-in mode. Favourite was 9d, even though I’m not a Chelsea fan 😁. Was 3*/4* for me.

    1. On skimming through the review I thought we’d been treated to two illustrations of the “great man”!!

  10. Finished in ok time earlier before my chauffeur duties for my wife . Another enjoyable crossword but could not parse 28a and needed to confirm the conspirator in 25a .
    Quite a few excellent clues to admire so , once again , will not pick a clear favourite .
    Thanks for the lovely pictures & hints .

  11. No great problems today but thought 28a was a little difficult to parse and still don’t see how ruin equates with end or am I missing something in 18a?
    I did like 😃12a and my fav 9d (I thought 9d was Chelsea vs Spurs or possibly the Arsenal!).
    Thx to all

    1. Stamford Bridge was miles up north and William the Conqueror and Tostig (a Viking warlord) devised a plan for Tostig to invade up north and fight a battle against Harold who would then have to rush south to fight William at Hastings and would arrive at the battlefield knackered. This was a factor in Harold’s defeat.
      So I seem to recall from primary school history lessons!

      1. I believe that Tostig was actually Harold’s own brother who had recruited the aid of Harald Hardrada, the Viking warlord, to help him wrest the crown from Harold.

  12. Very funny Heno !
    I also found this very easy after yesterday’s head hurter.
    Loved the Basil Fawlty clip..
    My favourite would also be the Chelsea clue.
    Mind you, I prefer my custard for dinner rather than breakfast .

  13. Anoher quality tuesday puzzle strangely it all fell into place quite quickly. No real favourites today. The autumnal gales are here, the sea looked wonderful.
    Result two very wet digs.
    Thanks to Mr K and setter

        1. Cats are so much more particular than dogs. Spooks typo of digs for dogs set me off on an aroma based memory of my own much missed dig who loved to roll in anything pungent rather than smell of dog shampoo.

  14. **/****. Flew through this until I got to the SW corner where I spent quite a bit of time with 22d and 28a. Very enjoyable overall. Thanks to all.

  15. A very satisfying puzzle and managed to parse just about every clue, really liked it. First in 2d and last in 7d took a bit of getting there with 7d but finally confirmed with BRB, not a word I use a lot? Tried to fit rat around 17d until the light came on but thought it was a smart clue. Not a tough puzzle but as usual lots to enjoy in the more benign offering.

    Clues of the day: 15a / 3d / 9d

    Rating: 2.5* / 4*

    Thanks to Mr K and the setter.

  16. After yesterday, when I was almost completely baffled, today was a joy. My sort of crossword. Thank you all. Love the ginger wig at 10a!

  17. Tuesday appears to have become the old Monday in terms of difficulty. This was over far too quickly although it was a pleasure while it lasted. No real favourite… maybe 23a.
    Thanks to the setter, and to Mr K for the review.

  18. This was good fun to solve and fairly straightforward, although 4a took me much longer to get than it ought to have done in hindsight.

    My top clue was 28a.

    Many thanks to today’s setter and to Mr K.

  19. Nice solveable crossword if a little obscure in parts **/*** 😃 Thanks to Mr K and to the Setter. 😉 Favourites 12a & 23a 👍 Biggest difficulty was getting onto the blog 😳

  20. Isn’t the painter in 27a more likely to be Richard (German expressionist) than Neil, the latter being more of a playwright and screenwriter?

    1. Welcome to the blog, Kevin.

      The answer is obtained by replacing M[ale] with T[ime] in HOMELIER, an adjective meaning more comfortable.

  21. What a pleasure it is to be on wavelength again, really enjoyed this. Confidence is fully restored, I hope Orphan Annie found it fun too.
    So many fave-worthy clues, so I’m going to choose a fave from the pics, and 10a is winner by five lengths.
    Last one in is 4a, when will I ever learn, I’ve been caught so many times. I’m more used to the American “password”, natch, as I’ve lived in the US for most of computerese language development.
    Thanks to whomsoever our setter is, and to Mr. K for the huge guffaw today. Keep up the good work!

  22. Yesterday’s gem was a hard act to follow and I thought this fell just short of the mark on the enjoyment factor. Still, a quality puzzle with some great clues, 15 and 23a foremost amongst them. Thanks to setter and Mr K for both his crystal clear explanations and his usually well illustrated review.

  23. Romped through that with the exception of 17d. Tons of words that would fit and I couldn’t pick/parse the right one. Thanks to Mr K for the most amusing hints and setter for easing back a touch on the difficulty. Glad that the northern battle site got a mention as it is nearby and I assume that the football ground took its name from the battle.

    1. I also assumed that the football ground was named after the battle site. But Wikipedia says about it that ”Stamford Bridge’ is considered to be a derivative of ‘Samfordesbrigge’ meaning ‘the bridge at the sandy ford’.”

      1. A coincidence of geography/geology then as the northern Stamford Bridge is also a sandy area prone to flooding.

  24. I found this quite straightforward up until my last clue, 17d which I just couldn’t see and disappointingly had to resort to the hint. Otherwise a very satisfying crossword.

  25. 18a gave us a feeling of deja vu. Earlier in the day we had tried to use this answer in the Rookie puzzle when we saw the word ‘attachment’ and had a couple of checkers in the right places. In that case we were wrong and had to think again and then, several hours later, we got to use the word after all. An enjoyable solve that we really appreciated.
    Thanks Mr Ron and Mr K.

  26. I loved the clues today, answers gave a smug feeling of satisfaction when completed. Had a few struggles lately but today was just enjoyment. Thank you to the setter and Mr K.

  27. Easier to solve than parse in places, a ** perhaps for difficulty? Where would crossword setters be without 9d? :-)

  28. Struggled again to get going. Not sure if it is because, per doctor’s orders, I am now on caffeine free diet, and brain is mush or because most of my effort was while waiting at the car dealership while our vehicle was serviced, surrounded by distracting overloud phone and television activity. But with Mr K’s hints, it turned into an enjoyable puzzle, even if a couple of answers presented themselves without their clues. Don’t know which I liked best, the two chump picture clues, or the John Cleese clip. Unforgettable. Thank you!

  29. 17d was a right bung in that I couldn’t parse. Wrote Defector thinking that the last three letters were rot for waste but couldn’t make sense of the top.
    Mind you, I also bunged in Vitamine in 4a before realising my mistake so thanks to Mr kitty for the explanations.
    Thanks also to the setter for a pleasant crossword.

  30. I’m not sure what I’ve done with my crossword. Goodness knows where I’ve left it. Flicking through the review, I remember enjoying 10a amongst others. Many thanks setter and Mr Kitty. I enjoyed this one more than yesterday.

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