DT 29048 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29048

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29048

A full review by crypticsue

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This puzzle was published on 11th May 2019

BD Rating – Difficulty ****Enjoyment **

This Saturday puzzle was far trickier to solve than 99% of Toughie crosswords and would have fitted in very well in the middle of the paper on a Thursday or possible even a ‘friendly’ Friday. A unhelpful grid, with the double unch at 1a didn’t help, and, on typing the review, It turned out that all those involved surface readings were mainly disguising ten insertion clues, several anagrams plus a couple of ‘insert something into an anagram’ clues 

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a    Rule out report of how lazy compiler acquired crossword? (8)
PRECLUDE – This sounds like (report) of PRE-CLUED – how a lazy compiler might acquire a crossword

5a    Carve hearts and so on at the front (4)
ETCH – H (Hearts in a pack of cards) with ETC (and so on) ‘at the front’

9a    Trade in vehicle I parked by headland (8)
BUSINESS – BUS (vehicle) I (from the clue) NESS (headland)

10a    More than one central part in clue to be solved (6)
NUCLEI – An anagram (to be solved) of IN CLUE

11a    They’ll get pipes going in lake — with people having a row that should be lead-free (8)
LIGHTERS – L (lake) fIGHTERS (people having a row ‘free’ or without the lead letter)

12a    Pack skimpy underwear as clothing for run (6)
THRONG – THONG (skimpy underwear) ‘clothing’ R (run)

14a    Change of lens unless needed for moody feeling (10)
SULLENNESS – An anagram (change of) LENS UNLESS

18a    High and low will be present, after really going in opposite directions (10)
EVERYWHERE – HERE (present) goes after VERY (really) after it has been inserted into E and W (opposite compass directions)

22a    Column goes into reversing lateral liposuction (6)
PILLAR – Lurking in reverse in lateRAL LIPosuction

23a    Disturbing someone in hospital, ringing in (8)
SINISTER – SISTER (someone in hospital) ‘ringing’ IN (from the clue)

24a    Anger surrounds team backing pick-me-up (6)
ELIXIR – RILE (anger) ‘surrounds’ XI (eleven members of a team), the result then reversed (backing)

25a    Loyalist beginning to pen criminal law (8)
STALWART – START (beginning) to ‘pen’ an anagram (criminal) of LAW

26a    Rear deer (4)
HIND – Double definition

27a    Most unusual, Conservative’s interrupting converted actress (8)
SCARCEST – C (Conservative) ‘interrupting) an anagram (converted) of ACTRESS


2d    Standard jeans — slim gent seeking every other option (6)
ENSIGN – This standard is a type of flag and can be found in every other letter (option) of JEaNs SlIm GeNt This clue made me smile as a certain not so slim gent of my acquaintance was looking at jeans on our shopping trip earlier on Saturday morning

3d    New in cricket side, needing time before hard stretch (6)
LENGTH – N (new) inserted into LEG (cricket side), then add (needing) T (time) before H (hard)

4d    Detectives given instruction to arrest Republican in a state (10)
DISTRAUGHT – DIS (Detective Inspectors) TAUGHT (given instructions) to ‘arrest’ R (Republican)

6d    Pathetic meeting … (8)
TOUCHING – Another double definition

7d    … postpone or carry on? (4,4)
HOLD OVER – HOLD (carry) OVER (on)

8d    Sanctimonious, having a tendency to scoff about Right (8)
PRIGGISH – PIGGISH (having a tendency to scoff [food]) ‘about’ R (right)

9d    Reckoning to have bowled poorly (4)
BILL – B (bowled) ILL (poorly)

13d    Humanitarian‘s trial is cut — that’s corrupt (10)
ALTRUISTIC – An anagram (that’s corrupt) of TRIAL IS CUT

15d    Weak are more unco-operative (8)
HELPLESS – People who are weak may well HELP LESS (be more uncooperative)

16d    Left wing’s first half getting stuck into passing and tackle (4,4)
DEAL WITH – L (left) and WI (the first half of Wing) getting ‘stuck into’ DEATH (passing)

17d    Lunatic orating about year for revolution (8)
GYRATION – An anagram (lunatic) of ORATING ‘about’ Y (year)

19d    One murdering great joke? (6)
KILLER – The second part of the clue could be a reference to something like the Monty Python sketch “The Funniest Joke in the World” where the joke is so funny that anyone who reads or hears it promptly dies from laughter.

20d    Make Raking Fire part of surrealist RA festival (6) STRAFE – Hidden in part of surrealiST RA FEstival. The online version of this clue had ‘Raking Fire’ (ie with punctuation marks and no italics) but I think the newspaper version provides a better surface reading to the clue

21d    Hurry along or up in bike race (4)
TROT – OR (from the clue) reversed (up) inserted into TT (bike race)

4 comments on “DT 29048

  1. This crossword made me think I was losing my sharpness of mind and wonder if I’d best look for a different puzzle!
    I’m pleased to read the BD rating above re the extra difficulty and I look forward to the usual Saturday standard of complexity in future.

  2. First time I have given up in months – bottom left corner. As always simple when you see the answer.

  3. Not very enjoyable. 11 across probably the worst clue I’ve ever seen in a Telegraph crossword.

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