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DT 29078 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29078 (Hints)

The Saturday Crossword Club

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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 Wolve’s 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    Cartel work with City (4)
The answer is the name of a specific cartel – a two-letter musical work is followed by the postcode of the City of London

3a    Former president with influence means to get round America (10)
A two-letter word meaning former is followed by the abbreviation of PRES(ident) and some influence

8a    Keeps in check worries about planet? (8)
Some worries around a celestial body like a planet – the definition by example is indicated by the question mark

11a    Clipped dunce’s head with a spanner first (8)
The initial letter (head) of D[unce] is preceded by (with … first) the A from the clue and a “spanner” i.e. something that spans, for example, a river

14a    Scientist heading away to have good time fairly soon (6)
Drop (away) the initial letter (heading) from a colloquial word for a scientist and add G(ood)

16a    Yankee airborne flying erratically (6)
The letter represented by Yankee in the NATO Phonetic alphabet is followed by a word meaning airborne (1-4)

21a    Agriculturalist engages personnel department for exciting work (8)
Someone who prepares the land for planting (agriculturalist) around (engaging) the two-letter abbreviation for a personnel department

22a    Heather getting to grips with old Beethoven piece (6)
… you need an alternative name for the plant heather

24a    Disregard finished appearance (8)
Combine four-letter words meaning finished or completed an appearance or manner

26a    Health resorts getting gullible people to return (4)
The reversal (to return) of some gullible people


1d    Detecting scent, see, rising over plant (9)
The reversal (rising in a down clue) is followed by (over) a plant or works

3d    Stretcher case I left superficially injured (7)
An anagram (injured) of CASE I and the outer letters (superficially) of L[ef]T

4d    Fool blocking servant’s way through (7)
A three-letter fool inside (blocking) a young servant

6d    Impending threat that could make some old cowards start to flee (5,2,8)
An anagram (that could make) of SOME OLD COWARDS with the initial letter (start) to F[lee]


15d    Stay a week held in irons? That will do for conspirator (3,6)
A stay or support is followed by the A from the clue and the two-letter abbreviation for week inside the chemical symbol for iron pluralised gives the name of the most famous conspirator in a 17th century plot

19d    Monk who is leader in artificial intelligence arguing from first principles (1,6)
A senior monk inside the abbreviation for Artificial Intelligence

20d    Variety of salad vegetable — only its tip’s usually taken in (7)
Most of the mass after which this salad item is made is below the surface, revealing only its tip

21d    Snacks from recycling pasta (5)
Move the final two letters of pasta to the beginning (recycling)

The Crossword Club is now open.

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The Quick Crossword pun: tonne+knee+quarter=tonic water 

45 comments on “DT 29078 (Hints)

  1. I found it difficult to get a start with this puzzle, but, having got a start in the SW corner, it became easier as I went along. The problems were inthe the NW corner and solving them put me into 3* time for difficulty. It was a moderately enjoyable puzzle (***) marred for me by a couple of unconvincing clues, 5a and 16a. However the anagrams were good and I liked 1d, 6d and 15d. So thanks to the setter and to BD for the hints

    1. I assume you mean 5d, I thought this was OK. A three letter abbreviation for business graduate inside a four letter Latin word for so. 16a was OK too, the letter the word Yankee stands for in the phonetic alphabet followed by a five letter word for airborne. Can’t see why you found them unconvincing?

      1. I found the 1 and 4 letter term after the Y for Yankee a bit contrived. I’m sure it’s in the BRB but is not a term used much in conversation or literature. I left out the 2, so it was 25a that I wasn’t so keen on, not 5a.I didnt notice it earlier as I was busy. My reason was that one of the double entendre answers is a word that I would regard as an American term.

  2. Thank you BD, I needed your explanation for my answers to 14a,15d (not really sure why for these two now) and 19d. For the latter I’d like to say I’ve learned something today, having worked out the answer from the wordplay and then resorted to Wikipedia to explain it, but it started to mangle my brain so I gave up.

    Nevertheless I enjoyed this little workout. Very many thanks. To all.

  3. Gentle, enjoyable, good surfaces and some clever clues that needed a little bit more thought. **/***

    9a favourite.

    Thanks to setter and BD

    1. Thanks Wahoo. You have saved from having to compose a comment as I agree with your view in its entirety. Thanks setter and BD.

  4. Usual tricky start for a Saturday puzzle but then it fell into place quite nicely. Did especially like 15d and 20d.
    Thx to all

  5. Thoroughly enjoyed today’s main puzzle, but just in passing I read the Quick Pun as three words.

  6. This seemed to be more gentle than recent Saturday puzzles, completed at a gallop – **/***.

    Although, I was not overly impressed by the synonym element of 16a, but, it’s in the BRB so hey-ho.

    Favourite – a toss-up between 22a and 19d – and the winner is, oh look the coin has landed on its edge!

    Thanks to the setter and BD.

  7. Slow start but soon got underway and then proceeded smoothly. 16a new to me. 1a last to 7d as I wasn’t looking for a 25a which in turn was in fact my Fav. Thank you Mysteron and BD. I find the Quickie solution a bit stretched but then again I was trying to make it into Don Quixote!

  8. I’d really value some guidance, if it’s possible without being too specific and ending up in the sin bin.
    26a today is an example – the word can be either way round and the checkers don’t help. So how do we choose whether the answer is ABCD or DCBA? Is there a cruciverbalists’ rule for this? This novice would appreciate help.

    1. There are instances in which only the checking letters help determine the correct answer, but 26a is not one of them. The reversal indicator (to return) comes after the second definition, so health resorts are your ABCD and gullible people are your DCBA.

      Had the clue said “Health resorts to return gullible people (4)” then it would have been ambiguous.

  9. Apart from being fooled temporarily by a more modern day answer for 15 down it all went swimmingly. Very nice puzzle and thanks to all

  10. Apart from my issue with 26a this was a nice straightforward puzzle completed in reasonable time. Favourite was 6d and I liked the illustration in the hints! Thanks to setter and BD.

  11. Thanks to the setter and to Big Dave for the hints. A very enjoyable puzzle, favourite was 6d. Needed electronic help for 25a, had never heard of the baking meaning, but it must be where xxxxxxxxx comes from? Was 2*/4* for me.

  12. Thank you setter for a good workout for the aged brain today. Thank you BD for fully parsing for me 1d and 8 and 16a. Foolish of me not to spot that type of plant. 16a was difficult for me as not a word I knew and trying to find an anagram either of Yankee or flying . The penny dropped for 1d but as I had not parsed it and did not have the first letter of 16a I thought there could be two possible endings. 20d came to me when I thought of the well known idiom. Not sure if there is a typo in the hint – should it read named rather than made? Favourites 11 (took me a while to think of this sort of spanner) and 14a and 5 and 20d. No problem with 26a. Very familiar with the word in recipes. Thanks again mystery man and BD.

  13. Can’t believe I finished a Saturday puzzle, and not only survived, but enjoyed it as well.
    I liked the two long anagrams, 2d and 6d, best ‘cos I solved them early on without any help. That gave me a lot of checking letters.
    Thanks to our Saturday setter and to BD for hints and tips.

  14. Enjoyable Saturday offering, a tad more difficult than of late I felt. Some good clues, particularly the two long anagrams.
    Thanks to setter & BD for review

  15. I was struggling a bit with this but once the impending threat had been removed (thanks BD!), it gradually fell into place. An enjoyable post dinner solve in the company of the Bill Evans Trio! Thanks to BD for the tips and the setter.

  16. An enjoyable tussle that took a bit of thought to complete. 15d was my favourite.
    Thanks to the setter, and to BD for the hints.

  17. Quite chuffed to complete this one in good time. Aren’t we all so very different! I often struggle with puzzles other people find easy and vice versa!

  18. Oh – a bit late here today.
    I’ve spent the day in the garden trying, and failing, to dodge torrential rain – gave up and decided that once I was wet then I was wet so might as well carry on.
    As a result of the above I was late getting to the crossword – by the time I got there it was gin and tonic time! Hooray!!
    When I started the crossword I think I was probably still in the garden – well, my brain certainly was so I was slow to get going.
    I did finish it in the end but didn’t find it straightforward at all.
    I particularly appreciated 14, 16 and 23a and I think my favourite was probably 25a – a great and probably, to some at least, an unfamiliar definition.
    Thanks to today’s setter and to BD.

    1. Kath – interesting to find 25a your favourite – the only one I still can’t get – I have two words that would fit but neither seems right to me .
      Can you help without breaking the rules ? Many thanks, Almo

      1. Please don’t address requests to specific people!

        25a Cutting down fat (10)
        Two definitions – the second being a word for fat used for making pastry.

  19. Possibly the most gentle Saturday puzzle for some weeks. Liked 1a, 21a and 22a, otherwise nothing to scare the horses. thanks to today’s setter and BD.

  20. Long way from done but very enjoyable. Favourite is 10a because first bit always reminds me of Terry Scott (hope I am not hurtling towards the naughty step ).

    I would be useless as a compiler. I just know I would make myself giggle and bother strangers on trains or in the street “See what I did there? Get it? Get it? ”

    Newsflash: ‘Amateur crossword compiler banned for life from …… (whatever British Rail is now) for accosting strangers with terrible puns.

  21. **/***. Back in the mix having been in Tofino all week – wonderful place 😎. This was an enjoyable solve with some good clues. Favourites 3a and 6d. Thanks to the setter and BD.

  22. I am concerned to see that the prize for the GK crossword in the Saturday supplement is the Collins English Dictionary. Has our favourite BRB been sidelined?

  23. And I was so hoping for a hint on 18d….. totally flummoxed there. Others fell into place at reasonable speed for me

    1. 18d Support for driver in popular car by junction, reportedly? (4,3)
      As you’ve probably guessed, I labelled this one as easy – but it’s only easy if you break down the clue correctly! the driver is used to hit a ball! A popular model of car is followed by what sounds like (reportedly) a type of road junction.

  24. Completed for once..without a hint on Saturday! Thoroughly enjoyed it. There were a few oldfashioned words that came up eg the fat in 25a and also 14 & 16a. Marvellous anagram at 6d caught me out for awhile…!
    I’m a bit late today as it is Mrs B’s birthday and she’s slaving in the kitchen…
    Thx to all!

    1. No fair, her birthday and she’s slaving in the kitchen? Tell her I demand you take her to a fancy restaurant!

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