DT 29090 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29090 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29090 (Hints)

The Saturday Crossword Club
Hosted by Tilsit

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It’s that time of the month again when the boss goes for a wander down the local Farmer’s Market and I pop in and do the honours.

A very enjoyable and reasonably straightforward puzzle from our regular Mysteron, I’d guess.  Not too much to hold you up although a couple of slightly oblique definitions, 6 down being the main culprit and was almost my last one in.  As usual, a thanks to the lovely Crypticsue for putting my pictures in as my iMac won’t allow me to for some reason.

Thanks again to our setter for a fairly speedy solve and a nice way to get the weekend going, even if I will be spending most of it organising train journeys for GWR and TPE passengers.  Tip:  Avoid Castle Cary station, especially on Monday.  It’s the nearest station to a certain event happening this weekend and there are expected to be at least 20000 people heading through there on Monday, luckily with no muddy boots in sight, it would seem.

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        One searching after man on board gets the bird(10)
The name of a man on a goard (game) goes before a name for someone who searches.

6a        Face some balls, having put ball in vessel? (4)
What you do if you face some balls in sport with a letter that represents a ball inside.

10a       American blocks beer getting water instead (5,3)
The abbreviation that means American goes before a word meaning blocks and one for beer to give a slang phrase for the liquid.

12a       Lady taking only half of mosaic pieces (4)
A girl’s name is 50% of a word for pieces in a mosaic.

20a       Stone ring next to New York Times (4)
The name for a precious stone is a letter meaning ring, next to the abbreviation for the city and another abbreviation meaning times in maths.

23a       One retiring will consume small dish (6)
A word for a shy person goes around the abbreviation for small to give a type of dessert.

26a       Summarise London area studies first (8)
Two short words meaning study (hence the plural studies) go before the compass region for the London area.

28a       Place of worship a celebrant organised (10)
An anagram of A CELEBRANT gives an ancient place of worship.


1d        Continue to protect a bird (4,2,2)
A phrase meaning to continue can be broken down into one meaning to protect plus a and a type of small bird.

4d        One in a suit or vest being worn (9)
The name in the card game Bridge when a hand has just one card of any suit is made up of two words (7,2) for wearing a type of vest.

6d        Ernie, possibly a servant (8)
A cryptic two word definition of Ernie as an eponym, can be joined together to make an old name for a servant.

7d        Barely sufficient these days to regard as similar (8)
The abbreviation for these days as a period goes before something meaning to regard as similar.

15d      Heard Lady in Red and felt great joy? (8)
A homophone for a girl’s name inside the colour.

17d      Very much likes to put away chair (4,4)
A name for a piece of furniture can be split up differently into a word meaning likes and one meaning to put away something.

19d      Fetch dog right away (8)
The name for a breed of dog, minus its last letter.

22d      English itch badly to accept any number from a particular community (6)
The abbreviation for English plus an anagram of ITCH with inside the abbreviation in maths for any number.

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The Quick Crossword pun: elfin+safe+tea=health and safety

36 comments on “DT 29090 (Hints)

  1. Gentle but very enjoyable. Enough “gimmes” to help the flow from 1a clockwise. Wavelength? – don’t read too much into some clues. Lots of candidates for favourite but I’ll pick 26a for the use of a “double” i.e. the plural. */****

    Thanks to Mysteron and Tilsit.

    Enjoy today’s sunshine everyone. It’s like being back home!

  2. Unusually for me I have done this on same day as everyone else. I enjoyed enormously although I did find the corners went in one at a time – NW SE NE SW. I was left with two 23a and 7d. The penny dropped with the former. I had to go through the alphabet for the latter to no avail until I realised I had the wrong answer for 11a. I wonder if others will get the wrong signal? Just a thought Tilsit I think the hint for 26a should be study (singular) and that the Plural in the clue indicates there are two of them. This fact made me hesitate over the fairly obvious answer until I twigged it. Thanks to Mysteron and thank to Tilsit although happily managed without hints on this sunny morning

    1. As Tilsit is busy sorting out train travel for probably vast numbers of passengers, I’ve edited his hint

      1. But as there are two different synonyms of study before the London area, isn’t the plural right?

  3. PS the mosaic piece was a new word for me but only girl’s name I could think of that fits. Mr Google has confirmed. Favourites 24a and 13d

  4. A treat to complete!

    Lots of good clues but will single out 1D as favourite .

    Thanks to everyone from a gloomy ( ie only the weather ) IOM .

  5. A very enjoyable crossword with just enough challenge to make it interesting (**/****).I particularly liked 6a, 12a and 13d and appreciated the thought that had gone into some of the 4 letter short clues. Thank you to the setter and to Tilsit.

  6. Flew through this pleasant pangram in one brew time today. I did pause to parse 6a and 23a.
    I did like 20a but only because my niece has a new black and white collie that has been given that moniker.
    Thanks to Tilsit and setter.

  7. No sweat today but not much fun either with too many wordy clues to sort out. West acquiesced before the East. 12a was bung-in as mosaic term new to me. IMHO 25a is a bit flimsy likewise the use of 26a diminution. No Fav. Pangram was safe bet following solution of 27a. Thank you Mysteron and Tilsit.

  8. I have to go out before the NTSPP is published (it is the Church Summer Fair) but can I highly recommend you give it a go

  9. For me, not a lot to write home about in this puzzle, I missed the pangram as usual, completed at a gallop – **/**.

    I did like 20a.

    Thanks to the setter and Tilsit.

  10. Just what I needed – a nice, uncomplicated puzzle. Thanks to the setter for getting my day off to a good start, and to Tilsit (and CS) for the review. NTSPP up next.

  11. 2*/2.5*. This pangram made a gentle and pleasant return to crosswording for me after a very hot but very enjoyable week in Prague, the highlight of which was seeing Mark Knopfler and his band at the Prague O2. I expected him to be very good indeed but I was completely blown away. He is a genius both as a guitar player and as a song writer, and the musical arrangements and the professionalism of all his band members made it one of the most memorable concerts I have ever attended. I was sad to hear that this is his farewell tour but the good news is that he is intending to carry on writing songs and recording them.

    Many thanks to today’s setter and to Tilsit.

      1. Thanks very rmuch for that link, John. It brought the whole week and incredible concert to life again. Guy Fletcher is an extremely talented musician and comes across as a very modest man in his part of Dire Straits’ acceptance speech last year when they were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Mark Knopfler himself didn’t turn up for unexplained reasons and no-one from the Hall of Fame was there to lead the induction :wacko:

        Do get to Prague. It’s a truly lovely city.

  12. I think any puzzle which includes both 20a and 27a is odds-on favourite for a pangram.

    Completed at a canter today, in ** time, unusually for a Saturday.

    Many thanks to all.

  13. An agreeable crossword for a very warm Saturday! Not too demanding but still a nice pangram to solve. 13d was my favourite.
    Thanks to the setter, and to Tilsit for the hints.

  14. Must be an easier one than usual, now I will see what Kate has
    in store for me.

  15. A pleasant way to spend a warm Saturday, several clues elicited a smile, especially 1d and 13d. Thanks to those who pointed out the pangram (I never spot them although 27a should have alerted me), to Tilsit, Cryptic Sue for the photos, and the mystery setter.

  16. Pleasantly straightforward and a joy to complete. Quality clues everywhere and a pangram to boot. What’s not to like. 28a my favourite.

    Thanks all.

  17. That wasn’t too difficult – it’s left me with lots of crossword energy which I know will be needed for Gazza’s NTSPP.
    As always I missed the pangram.
    6d caused grief and I’m still not entirely sure about it – I tried to make it into an anagram which didn’t help.
    I don’t quite see why we need ‘mentioned’ in 24a.
    I took a while to understand plural studies in 26a.
    I liked 6a – now there’s a first – my liking anything to do with cricket – and 26a and 15d.
    With thanks to todays setter and to Tilsit.
    Too hot – it’s 32C in Oxford. I’m going to be a loafer on the sofa with the NTSPP for the rest of the day.

  18. I enjoyed this, perfect for what I needed on a Saturday morning. Thunder, lightning and black as night out there, I have all the lights on but still hard to read the clues, plus I’m half blind, so it took rather longer than it should have.
    I had no problem with 6d, but struggled with 26a, which was a bung in at the end.
    Lots to like here, but I’m going for the quickie pun as my fave.
    Thanks to our Saturday setter and to Tilsit and Cryptic Sue for the hints and pics.

  19. */****. This was an enjoyable solve if over too quickly. No harm in that and finished off my week very nicely. Mrs Vbc and I went to see ELO downtown and having seen many acts passing through our city they were possibly the best we’ve ever seen. Outstanding! Thanks to Tilsit and our setter.

  20. Enjoyable pangram. 1d gets my vote for favourite. Many thanks setter and Tilsit.

  21. Enjoyed this week’s puzzle. 6a made me doh! Once I got it. Now if the setter would only use commas :) 1d fave and 23a last in. Thanks to setter and Tilsit


  22. Hmm, I’m not sure if it was the hot weather, distraction due to the fact that we were expecting a house full of guests in the afternoon, or simply a wavelength thing, but I struggled with this puzzle yesterday morning and had to leave it until today to finish.

    6d was a new word for me in that context and I was misled by the prefix of “barely” in 7d which in my mind is not necessary for the definition, although perhaps that just means I fell into the precise trap intended by our setter.
    25a raised a smile and I liked the clever surface in 15d but this was tempered by the use of the generic male/female name construct which I’m not a fan of, even with a homophone thrown in.

    I spotted the pangram, which helped a bit, but still had to resort to a couple of hints to complete so thanks to Tilsit for the help (I enjoyed your salutation!) and to the setter for the challenge.

  23. Managed to finish once I saw that the last word in 16d was carnage and not carriage.
    Need to have a serious look at my printer. It’s gone a bit pear shaped lately.
    Another weird thing is happening on my windows phone: It asks me if I want to download or open the blog’s page. I press either option and a message saying that my phone doesn’t accept that format file. Have to then go back a page to access the blog again.
    Thanks to the setter and to Tilsit for the club.

  24. Completed Saturday leaving time to catch up with chores! Enjoyed the challenge after last week. Looked At Tilsit ‘s hints to check on a couple, but all OK Enjoyed our first proper summer’s day but today was back to Autumn again today. Thx to all!

  25. Straightforward for a change. Had to check one word 28a which I’d never heard of before – it will be good for playing scrabble with my 8 kids, some of whom are now starting to do the cryptic crossword.

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