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DT 28906

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28906

Hints and tips by a twinkly Miffypops

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment **

Today is National Settle Down Monday. After the academic debate here on Friday night, the joy of finding a new female teenaged setter on Saturday and the histrionic hyperbole stirred up by the much tougher Sunday puzzles being set by Dada maybe we can all settle down today. Our new Monday setter has produced a reliable construct whereby if you do as asked you will find an answer. Nothing here is obscure or tough.

Coventry and England are on the winning trail at Rugby. The sky is clear, and the day is bright. All is well with the world. Now let us see what illustrative chances today’s review brings.

The hints and tips are there to help and I hope they do. Illustrations may or may not be relevant. The answers lie beneath the greyed-out boxes known as spoilers. You may reveal them if all else has failed or if you just can’t be bothered anymore

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a Reveal love in declaration of intent (9)
MANIFESTO: A synonym of the word reveal is followed by the letter that looks like the love score in tennis. The resulting word is often used to describe the intent of political parties

6a In addition, luxurious hotel not included (4)
PLUS: Remove the abbreviation for hotel from an adjective meaning richly luxurious and expensive

10a Bobby’s first to explore thicket (5)
COPSE: A plural slang term for policemen is followed by the initial or first letter of explore

11a Boy, a youth who drowned saving ten (9)
ALEXANDER: This boy’s name can be worked out by beginning with the letter A from the clue. Now dig deep into your knowledge of mythology for the lad who fancied Hero so much that he swam the Hellespont Strait every night to be with her but sadly drowned in a storm. Such is love. We also need to bung the Roman numeral for ten into the mix (saving ten)

12a Left behind, a group one day (9)
ABANDONED: A four-part charade. 1 The letter a from the clue 2 A group, musicians perhaps 3 The word one, also from the clue 4 The abbreviation for Day

14a Spicy dish, Latvian perhaps — time for lunch? (5)
BALTI: A native of Latvia is followed by the letter that looks like the number that is the time a lot of people have their lunch

15a Vegetable from Spain that’s stewed? Check (7)
SPINACH: Begin with an anagram (stewed) of SPAIN. Add the abbreviation for check

16a Famous artist, English, not without heart (7)
EMINENT: Begin with a Turner prizewinning artist. Add the abbreviation for English. Add the word NOT but minus its middle letter (disheartened)

18a A permit secured by the gymnast, perhaps (7)
ATHLETE: Use the letter A from the clue. Then wrap the word THE around a word meaning to permit or allow

20a Delivery worker in the south of France going around with iron (7)
MIDWIFE: Place a name for an area in the south of France around the abbreviation for with. Add the chemical symbol for iron

21a Spinner in charge provides talking point (5)
TOPIC: This spinner is a children’s toy. It is followed by the abbreviation for in charge

23a Prevailing price to enter? Considerable, it’s said (5,4)
GOING RATE: Begin with a pair of two-lettered words that mean enter. Add a homophone (it’s said) of a word meaning considerable or large

25a Purposefully, I approach breeding ground (2,7)
IN EARNEST: I from the clue. A word meaning approach or get close to. A breeding ground for vipers perhaps

26a Become different once Raleigh beheaded? (5)
ALTER: Behead or remove the first letter of Raleigh’s first name

28a Breathe with difficulty when doctor comes round (4)
GASP: Your general practitioner surrounds a synonym of the word when

29a Brownish-grey horse, and where it may be kept in a Bedfordshire town? (9)
DUNSTABLE: A three-lettered word meaning light brown is followed by the name of the place we keep horses


1d Mike, old codger, mostly makes coffee (5)
MOCHA: Begin with the letter represented by Mike in the phonetic alphabet. Add the abbreviation for old. Now add a codger or bloke minus his last letter.

2d A siesta in garden apartment (3)
NAP: The answer lies within (in) the words of the clue as do Ena and Den. Perhaps they are sleeping together.

3d Put out food for bird (9)
FIELDFARE: Put out as in put out a team to play a game followed by a range of food of a particular type

4d Check clubs in haunts abroad (7)
STAUNCH: The abbreviation for clubs is included in an anagram (abroad) of HAUNTS

5d Extra expected is late arriving (7)
OVERDUE: A word meaning more than is followed by a word meaning expected or planned for at a certain time

7d Film daughter in new local musical (2,5,4)
LA DOLCE VITA: The abbreviation for daughter is placed within an anagram (new) of LOCAL. This is followed by a musical about Argentina

8d Setter I’ve trained brings item used during dinner? (9)
SERVIETTE: Anagram (trained) of SETTER IVE

9d Gear to boast about (4)
GARB: reverse (about) a word meaning to boast

13d Paint shapes up the wall, actually (2,2,7)
AS IT HAPPENS: Anagram (up the wall) of PAINT SHAPES

15d Astonishing bird grabbing beast’s tail (9)
STARTLING: This bird is one from a murmuration. He needs to sit around the final letter of the word beast

17d Annoyed, pub worker about gibe (9)
INDIGNANT: Find another name for a pub. Add an insect worker. Insert a gibe, taunt or barbed comment

19d Something to eat with top boffin (7)
EGGHEAD: an edible comestible that comes in a shell is followed by a synonym for top

20d Fluid on items, slightly wet (7)
MOISTEN: Anagram (fluid) of ON ITEMS

22d Jack of diamonds found under vehicle? (4)
CARD: The abbreviation for diamonds is found beneath one’s motor

24d Nobleman blowing top — that is strangely frightening (5)
EERIE: A nobleman (of the realm) minus his initial letter (blowing his top) followed by the Latin for that is

27d Bill in club brought over (3)
TAB: This club is a weapon or a sporting implement. Reverse it. (brought over)

Now that wasn’t too painful was it? Can we all play nicely now?

Quickie Pun: Purse+Ewer=Pursuer

55 comments on “DT 28906

  1. A pleasant, straightforward and enjoyable start to the solving week. 3d was short and concise, but my favourite was 11a.

    Thanks to our setter (Navy?) and to the twinkly one.

  2. What a difference a day makes. Today’s puzzle was a source of short-lived but good fun. Favs were 11a and 20a. Thank you Mysteron and MP.

  3. No horses were hurt in the completion of this crossword. Did the comment count reach 100 yesterday? I must check. Yes, 112 to date!

    As MP saya, all is now well with the world.

    Thanks to all.

  4. A reall nice,straightforward and well clued puzzle with which to begin the week. Lots of favourites, just too many too mention. Hopfully this shouldn’t provoke any controversial comments today. Thankyous to both setter and MP.

  5. I thought that there were some excellent charades today like 11a and 20a and particularly liked the surface of 7d, going for a **/***.
    Spot on for a Monday solve after a lazy weekend- the rugby was particularly good
    Thanks to MP for the pics.
    I found the Sunday Telegraph puzzle unusually difficult for a change.

  6. 2* / 2*. There were a couple of slightly iffy surfaces in evidence but otherwise this was unexceptional, but perhaps that’s no bad thing for a Monday morning.

    Thanks to the setter (is it Campbell under the new regime?) and to MP.

  7. As you say MP a pleasant start after a topsy-turvy weekend. Thank you for the hints that, as always, add a 6a to Mondays.
    Not wishing to be too controversial I should point out that Wales (& Ireland) are not doing too shabbily either – roll on the 6 Nations & the World Cup!
    Thanks to MysteRon (or after Saturday MysRon)

  8. Definitely a respite after yesterday and a pleasant enough puzzle.

    15 & 28a raised a smile and my favourite was the lady doling out iron in 20a. I well remember being persuaded of its merits but discovering that it acted as a personal ‘bung’!

    Thanks to our setter and to MP for the blog. Nice photo at 3d and I enjoyed the reminder of Popeye. Not too keen on the napkin folding – my Dad used to make far superior Swans out of the silver paper in cigarette packets!

  9. An enjoyable start to my Sunday evening, which also allowed me plenty of time to complete the equally enjoyable Rookie and provided me with some relaxation after a ‘fun-filled’ Sunday, completed at a gallop with the assistance of a handful of oldies but goodies – **/***.

    Favourite – 17d – a concise three part charade.

    Thanks to the setter and GMoLI.

  10. As it’s “national settle down day” (politicians take note), I shall confine my comments to saying how much I enjoyed this refreshing and concisely clued puzzle. Thanks to the setter and to MP, particularly for the explanation of 11a, which I’d bunged in from the checking letters .

  11. Thanks to the setter and Miffypops for the review and hints. I enjoyed this one very much, a nice start to the week. I was beaten by 3d, had never heard of this bird, and couldn’t see the wordplay. Favourite was 23a. Was 2*/3* for me.

  12. Thank you, DT, for honing my solving ability yesterday.
    By comparison, today was gentle and pleasantly soothing.
    For me * difficulty.
    Thanks to the setter and Miffypops for the review.

  13. Try again !

    Yes , going with the trend to date , enjoyable crossword with much to admire and appreciate .

    Liked 11A & 20A but favourite 23A .

    Thanks to everyone

  14. Nice puzzle, with the right amount of head-scratching for me. Very enjoyable with 23a my clear favourite. !6a was a bung in but I still cannot find any reference to the artist on Google or elsewhere.
    Many thanks to setter and MP.

    1. Thanks for the link Sue, a very interesting read and always nice to put a face to a setter.

  15. This restored my confidence after yesterday’s effort. Finished in a very enjoyable record time for me.
    Thanks to setter and MP for (unneeded) hints.

  16. This took me longer than usual. Either I was being dim or watching the Test Match at the same time caused a loss of concentration. A very nice and satisfying solve. Favourite – 20a.

  17. This was a thoroughly enjoyable **/***. I am lucky enough to occasionally see the bird at 3d in my garden, so that was my favourite clue.
    Thanks to MP for settling us all down!

  18. **/***. An enjoyable if brief exercise. Really liked 11&16a and 7d. As MP states nothing obscure. Thanks for the hints and to the setter a tip of the hat for the very fair clues. It’s scything down so a very wet walk for the dogs compounded by potential tricky areas at the beach because of king tides for the next few days.

  19. My faourite is 7d.
    Though I liked all of them. The only problem I have is that I finished it last night and having waved long suffering hubby off to work at 5.45 a.m. settled down with cup of tea and ‘Oh! B*gger! I’ve finished it.’ So I cleaned the oven instead. This not normal behaviour.

  20. It has been said already but I agree a nice gentle start to the week.I managed to do this in what meagre coffee breaks I managed to get on cyber Monday in a web based sales organisation. But loved the change of pace after Sunday. Off to read about our new setter. I hope the Graun don’t poach her as the DT need to keep her.

  21. Oh, wotta lotta fun, I loved it. Perhaps a reaction to yesterday’s brain burning.
    I didn’t know the bird but had all the checkers so a little electronic help was needed.
    Fave was 11a. When I can remember something learnt about 70 years ago, it will automatically put it into fave status.
    Thanks to our setter and to twinkly M’pops for his hints and pics.

  22. As an old(ish) codger called Mike who mostly has a morning ritual of making the coffee, 1 down did make me chuckle!
    I enjoy the blog and thanks for the hints and tips, especially with yesterday’s horror!

  23. A lot of people on here breathing great sighs of relief I see!
    A very Monday (of old) type puzzle. Pleasant enough and over too soon.
    7d was tops for me.
    Thank you to the setter, and to Twinkletoes from LI for the review.

  24. Lovely, lovely stuff! That’s much more like it after yesterday’s impossibility (for me).
    23ac definite fave for the alternative pronunciation.
    Many thank yous to setter and MP from an ex-publican.

  25. Was a bit held up by writing Athelet in 18a.
    Soon corrected and finished with the boffin in 19d (although I wasn’t keen on the description of Egg) and the bird in 3d (although I wasn’t keen on the synonym of Put Out).
    Favourite 7d.
    Thanks to the setter and to MP for the twinkly review.

    1. Which team will France field in The Six Nations? Which team will France put out in The Six Nations?

      1. I don’t like either expression.
        France is going to present a new team as we are currently dishing out passports to Fiji.

  26. I printed this off knowing I’d be on a course all day: the plan was I could sit at the back and look like I was taking notes when really…
    The plan didn’t work because I managed to finish it before I got in the car, so a gentle start to the week with the added bonus that I now know how to unite separate benefices.

  27. What a brilliant crossword 😃 ***/**** Favourites 20a & 17d thanks to the twinkly one and to the Setter 😉

  28. Didn’t do the Friday or Sunday puzzles as my printer refuses to print in b & w because the yellow ink has run out. Very annoying. Did Saturday’s from the dead tree version, so was interested to read the above article about the new setter. As a result of today’s blog I looked up the reviews of Fri and Sun … glad I didn’t have the Sunday puzzle now! Thanks to all today.

  29. A good Monday puzzle – nothing too difficult, but an enjoyable solve. I didn’t know the bird so was pleased to get that correct. Last in 16ac where I was sure I wouldn’t know the artist required either, but of course I did. Top marks.

  30. Big thank you to the mystery setter for an excellent puzzle today, a great start to the week, and such a relief after yesterday. As Miffypops said, nothing too difficult here. I did need a couple of hints to finish so thank you, but no other help today, so very satisfying.

  31. I enjoyed this – light relief having done an unguided tour of London on my way home from taking the Younger Lamb back – ie I got lost. :sad:
    Not many anagrams and I’m not sure I’ve ever seen ‘up the wall’ used as an anagram indicator before today.
    I always forget the artist that I needed to have remembered in 19d so that one took a while.
    Untangling 7d wasn’t easy – well, it wasn’t for me anyway – not helped by never having heard of the film but what a clever clue.
    I particularly liked 20, 23 and 29a and I think my favourite was probably 7d, although it could have been any of the previous ones mentioned.
    With thanks to whoever set this one and to the twinkling hinty person.

    1. It is impossible to get lost in London Kath. Just as it is impossible to drive in London without getting a ticket for an imagined offence

  32. Another good start to the week. Thanks MP and thanks Crypticsue for the link to yesterday’s setter. I needed ‘Mr Google’s’ for 3d. Not many of that variety down our way. 20a, I usually think cricketers for ‘delivery questions’. Took a while for the penny to drop😖 25a was my favourite.

  33. Just read the link to ‘Navy’, aka Lucy Evans. Great to see not only a new generation of cryptic aficionados but a new generation of setters🤙

    1. Yes indeed – presumably we solvers of a certain age will henceforth have to look to our laurels as we are faced with more contemporary clues!

  34. Got the field part of 3D but couldn’t get the ending. Overall great fun. A great Bob Dylan song with Spanish subtitles! Where did that come from?

  35. Playing catch-up after a few days in Northumberland minus mobile phone/ internet/ retail access. Enjoyed cooking on an Aga and lighting the wood burning stove. ….and having conversations. We couldn’t get the tv to work, even if we did want to watch it, but to be honest, we didn’t. I managed to finish this crossword but had to check a couple of answers in the review. I tried to do something with a parsnip for 15a. Many thanks setter and twinkly Miffypops. I guess the Christmas tree must be up.

    1. Lots of shared letters between SPAIN and PArSNIp Florence. No the tree is not up yet. Saint Sharons stitch and bitch group are sitting and knitting one for the Christmas Tree Festival in the church.

  36. 1*/4*………
    COD 26A (become different once Raleigh beheaded)….
    Thanks to the setter-had to smile at Miffypop’s knitting group in comment 38.

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