DT 29135 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29135

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29135

Hints and tips by 2Kiwis

BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ****

Kia ora from Aotearoa.

When summer gets extended somewhat longer than the norm we have the expression “Indian Summer” to describe it. If there is a similar expression to describe a winter that goes on past its recommended use-by date, it is one that we don’t know. At the bottom of the post we have put a photo we took two days ago looking across some wetlands of our estuary towards the Tararua ranges with a fresh mantle of snow.

Another Wednesday treat from Jay for us all to solve.

Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.


1a     Assume importing gold will be strange (7)
FOREIGN : Assume or simulate contains the two letter heraldic term for gold.

9a     Reveal a new grammatical term for an object in front of church (8)
ANNOUNCE : String together ‘A’ from the clue, the abbreviation for new, a grammatical ‘naming word’ and the Anglican Church.

10a     Girl from musical pocketing doctor’s instrument (7)
MARIMBA : The musical girl is either from West Side Story or The Sound of Music. She surrounds one of the two letter possibilities denoting a doctor.

11a     Gives prominence to characteristics (8)
FEATURES : A double definition.

12a     The French article and the German article? (6)
LEADER : A French definite article, an English indefinite article and a German definite article. All this produces a newspaper article

13a      Rash types adviser led off (10)
DAREDEVILS : An anagram (off) of ADVISER LED.

15a     Simple canal boat with no end of painting (4)
BARE : A canal boat, but not the ones we associate with Venice, loses the final letter from painting.

16a    Manage stewed prunes for some on the podium (7-2)
RUNNERS-UP : Manage or control and then an anagram (stewed) of PRUNES.

21a     Want to have one for a defeat (4)
LICK : Start with a synonym for a want or shortage, and replace the letter ‘A’ with the Roman numeral one.

22a     I’m sort of upset about one’s instruction for player (10)
FORTISSIMO : The Roman numeral one with its ‘S is included in an anagram (upset) of I’M SORT OF.

24a     Slogan adopted by human traffickers? (6)
MANTRA : A lurker, hiding in the clue.

25a     Career of mostly courteous Independent and Conservative ministers at the end (8)
POLITICS : Remove the last letter from a synonym for courteous and then I(ndependent) C(onservative) plus the last letter of ministers.

27a     Controversial speech from European male in charge (7)
POLEMIC : A person from an Eastern European country and the abbreviations for ‘male’ and ‘in charge’.

28a      Last on, is hoping to contain surprise (8)
ASTONISH : Another lurker, hiding in the clue.

29a     Refuse to accept it’s rejected fate (7)
DESTINY : Refuse, or even refute contains the reversal of the word ‘it’s’.


2d     Relax, unusually, in the morning after old test (4,4)
ORAL EXAM : String together O(ld), an anagram (unusually) of RELAX, and finally the two letters signifying before noon.

3d     Stay up with Her Majesty after party for criminal (8)
EVILDOER : The reversal (up in a down clue) of stay or reside, then a two letter party and Her Majesty’s regnal cypher.

4d     A bishop must wear new designer coats (10)
GABERDINES : ‘A’ from the clue and a chess bishop are inside an anagram (new) of DESIGNER.

5d     Eager to promote new joint (4)
KNEE : Start with a synonym for eager or enthusiastic and move N(ew) up a couple of places.

6d     Job that is for a delivery worker (6)
POSTIE : A job or occupation and then the two letters from the Latin phrase for ‘that is’.

7d     Church song popular trio played on time (7)
INTROIT : The two letter popular, an anagram (played) of TRIO plus T(ime).

8d     One word for dragon, in two words! (7)
PERSIST : Split the word dragon into two words 4,2. Now find a synonym for this phrase.

11d     Developed register of timeless fakes (9)
FORGERIES : An anagram (developed) of REGIStER OF once the abbreviation for time has been removed (timeless).

14d     Upset married model after dance (10)
DISCOMPOSED : Start with a dance style that we associate with the 1970’s, then the abbreviation for married, and model or sit for an artist.

17d     Mournful chap supporting scheme (8)
PLANGENT : Another word for a scheme and then a dignified chap.

18d     Poisonous type in house south of London (8)
SCORPION : The house is one of the signs of the zodiac. This is followed by the last letter (south) of London.

19d     Cheaper time to go on holiday with dog, some say (3-4)
OFF-PEAK : On holiday or not at work and then a homophone for the short name for a breed of dog originating in China.

20d     Pressure on recount for bishop, perhaps (7)
PRELATE : P(ressure) and then recount or narrate.

23d     Keen on Geordie chant? (6)
INTONE : A four letter informal word for keen, then the geographical area we associate with Geordies.

26d     Ready when cutting into central heating (4)
CASH : A synonym for ‘when’ is contained by the abbreviation for central heating.

Again hard to pick a favourite but the cleverness of 12a particularly appealed to us.

Quickie pun    fools    +    highs    =    full size

And here is the pic promised in the preamble.

48 comments on “DT 29135

  1. Completed in **/*** time. It was never going to be like yesterday’s offering, but it flowed smoothly enough. My Northern Soul insisted on whining to about clues including parts of London, until the penny dropped. Doh!

    That makes 18d my COTD.

    Many thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

  2. This was both challenging and good fun (**/****). The NE held me up and Iwasn’t confident enough to bung in the answer to 8d until I read the hint. 12a was particularly satisfying so that’s my favourite. Thanks to the Kiwis and Jay.

  3. I found this slightly more challenging than usual for a Jay but I did enjoy myself. Thank you to him and the 2Ks (lovely picture)

  4. BD. I won’t see this puzzle till Friday, but I want to say a big thank you for permanently fixing the “button-banner” at the top of the page – and you probably did it before I requested it a while ago on the New Scheme page!

  5. Gentle and pleasurable exercise today. North was more friendly than the South. 21a was an unparsed bung-in as was 5d where I failed to comprehend “promote” and 18d was yet another due to fact I don’t think of Zodiac signs as houses. Not sure whether a 3d is necessarily a criminal? Needed a lead on 8d but it became Fav in the end. TVM Jay and the 2Kiwis.

  6. Not bad. I think 12a was good but a repeat from 2005 (I am currently doing some of the older ones from the highly recommended Telegraph Puzzle subscription).
    23d was one that made me want to kick myself – I stared at it for 10 minutes before coming here for help – I hoped the answer would be convoluted – thus giving me a pass – but to my shame – it was straightforward :-(

  7. 4*/5*. I found this at the tougher end of Jay’s spectrum but superbly enjoyable. 7d was a new word for me and 12a was my outstanding favourite of a fabulous selection.
    Many thanks to the three birds.

  8. Definitely one of Jay’s trickier puzzles which needed reference to the BRB for confirmation of some answers such as 7d and 17d; completed at a gallop, almost being slowed down to a fast canter, but that did not spoil the enjoyment – 2.5*/4*.
    Candidates for favourite – 12a, 29a, and 19d – and the winner is 19d.
    Thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

  9. LetterboxRoy is busy compiling, so I’m standing in until further notice

    Another fab puzzle from Jay, thanks to him and to our Antipodean friends

  10. Nothing jumped out on first read through. Then slowly got going. Took me ages to think of another name for a canal boat???? 8d favourite. Ta to all.

  11. never heard of 7d but it was fairly clued so gettable, didn’t understand the clue to 8d till i read the hint but the puzzle was still good fun.

  12. Interesting but quite tough for me. Liked 22a. Last one in 8d. Didn’t think synonym was very accurate. Thanks to clever setter and the Kiwis for their excellent hints.

  13. I thought this was quality from start to finish and certainly no walk in the park. Got stuck in the NW as 1a just wouldn’t come to me as I had au in my mind for gold and couldnt shift it. Also 21a and 18d caused me considerable headscratching.

    It would be an injustice to the rest of the clues to try and pick a favourite but 12a and 8d would be right up there.
    4d was a blast from the past and I seem to remember 22a being part of the lyric of Bohemian Rhapsody but I may be wrong.
    Many thanks to Jay and to the 2Ks for their excellent works

  14. Thoroughly satisfying in spite of being **** for difficulty for me.
    Excellent clueing, eg 9a.
    Many thanks to Jay and the 2Kiwis for the colourful review.

  15. Hard to see past the very inventive 12a for a COTD. There were many other worthy contenders but none ran it close. Overall a very satisfying and enjoyable solve from the Wednesday maestro.

    Many thanks to Jay for the fun and to the 2Ks.

  16. Jay’s offering took me a while to crack. No particular favourites but some good anagrams, especially 22a. I’m not sure that 17d is mournful. My dictionary app defines plangent as resoundingly loud, but it works. 8a was my last to go in. Thanks to J and the Kiwis x 2 for the extra insight🦇

      1. Kia Ora K2s, Not as much as the one from Perth😠😜. I thought we were in trouble when I saw it was a wet track. I couldn’t stand the torture so I switched to the NRL at 17-0, Melbourne v Canberra. That was an entertaining game. There was also an excellent AFL game on at the same time, Brisbane Lions v Geelong. The TV remote got a workout. One positive about Aussie Rules footy, an Australian team will always win😜. Well done so off to the World Cup we go🏉🏉

  17. Agree with the 2K’s ***/****, Jay receives his due plaudits for a most entertaining puzzle.
    I failed to parse 18d, I thought it must be the name of a house south of London-never mind- thanks to the 2K s, nearly put intent in for 23d until I saw the light.
    Last in was 8d, good job the checking letters were there-finally had that d’oh moment, going to make this my favourite for its originality.

  18. I was very slow to get 1a and did feel the need to check 7d, it was buried a long way down in the old grey cells.

    Podium places went to 12a plus 8d for its originality and 23d because it made me laugh.

    Thanks to Jay for another sparkler and to our 2Ks for the blog – nice photo!

  19. Slightly tougher for a wednesday but enjoyable, even pushing 70 you lesrn new things nesrly everyday. 7d a case in point, thank you Roget and BRB.
    Thanks to 2Ks and setter.

  20. Thanks to Jay and to the 2 Kiwis for the review and hints. I enjoyed what I could do, but found it very tricky. Needed the hints for 1,15,21,29a and 8d. Managed to get 18d, but couldn’t parse it. Thought it was something to do with Sion House, but that’s actually Syon, so I didn’t have the faintest idea! Favourite was 22d. Had never heard of 7d,but it was fairly clued. Was 5*/4* for me.

  21. I found this one more of a challenge than I normally do on a Wednesday. I must confess I had absolutely no idea what 8d was pointing to, and hence it was left unsolved.

    Thanks to Jay, and to the 2Kiwis.

  22. I decided that ” intune ” , was a better answer for 23 down , for obvious reasons ? Away the lads !! .Thanks to the 2K’s

  23. A thoroughly enjoyable puzzle from Jay.

    8d – The “dragon” one & 12a – the “Article” one crossed the finishing line in a dead heat for 1st place. The rest of them weren’t far behind.

    Thanks to 2Kiwis for the blog.

  24. Found this a little tricky needed help for 8d 😳 ***/*** Favourites 1a and 23d 😃 Thanks to Jay and to the 2x Ks for a nicely illustrated and helpful blog 🤗

  25. This puzzle took me almost exactly twice the time both Monday’s and Tuesday’s took (they both went in in the same amount of time) and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Last one in by a long way was 8d and I so wanted to kick myself when the penny dropped.

    Many thanks to all the birds

  26. An extremely enjoyable puzzle. Thank you.
    Just one query. In 18d, I know that south is a tail indicator for a down clue but wouldn’t east be more logical? Am I missing something?
    Thank you to all involved as usual.

    1. That is an interesting point that did occur to us as well. The N is at the south of the answer but to the east of London in the clue.
      Wonder what some of the experienced setters and solvers here think about it.

      1. I’m no maven, but I agree ‘…London’s East-End’ or similar would work better, but I’m not going to challenge Jay!

        1. Guess that you are suggesting that as a response to our question in the preamble for an equivalent phrase to “Indian Summer”. Like it! :smile:

  27. Very, very tricky today, a long time since Jay has made us work so hard, I had to visit the hint for 1a to get going again.
    I had to dig up 7d from the darkest recesses of my brain, haven’t heard that one for the longest while.
    I bunged in 8d, surprised it was correct, but isn’t that clever? Typical Jay offering.
    There was so much good stuff here, but I think I’m going to choose 12a for fave, though 19d deserves mention.
    Thanks to Jay for the usual fun and to 2Kiwis for bailing me out midstream!

  28. I made a bit of a mess of this and if I wasn’t working electronically I would have loads of scribbling. I saw what needed to happen to 7d and a quck google was the new to me word but I bunged it in wrong. 13a was another mess as I couldn’t make anything fit around the O of 7d. 14d had a FORT ending that made another mess of 2 crossing clues. And I spelled Harold Wilson’s mac wrong too!
    All my failings not the setter or the 2K’s and I still enjoyed it.
    Better luck tomorrow.

  29. Sometimes I love Jay and sometimes I don’t. Found this one very tricky, certainly nothing gentle about it. I could have sat here all day and not come up with some of the answers on my own, particularly 7d and 17d, both new to me. Clearly I was not paying attention in school. Thank you to the 2Kiwis, without whom I would never have finished. But at least I didn’t need any other help. Also, what a gorgeous picture from NZ. Photographing landscapes is a passion of mine, and that one is a stunner. Quite beautiful.

    1. Thank you BusyLizzie.
      We were getting towards the end of our walk on Monday when the ranges, that had been covered in cloud for a few days, appeared in all their glory. As we don’t carry our phones with us we returned with them as soon as we got home, to record the scene.

  30. I think this was in retribution for yesterdays offering. I understood about 1/2 of the wordplay although it was eminently finishable by identifying the definitions and ignoring the dross.
    Def not my favourite.
    Thx for the hints

  31. Morning all.
    Needless to say the beautiful blue skies that you see in our photo did not last long and it is raining again this morning.
    We certainly had the feeling that Jay had ratcheted the difficulty up a notch with this one with some really clever clues. We thoroughly enjoyed the solve and then putting together a set of hints as it lets one appreciate the cleverness all over again.

  32. I’m still not sure if 8d is very clever or just totally unfair, but perhaps that’s just because I struggled badly with that particular clue. ** for time overall.

  33. Tough. Managed to complete all but two without hints. Found on checking that was actually three as I put intent for 23d. Keen on/intent. Got 8d with the hint. Very clever clue. Also got 10a with the clue. That was my fault. The musical girl was the only one I never thought of. Thanks Jay and 2ks.

      1. Me too! Funny, Westside Story is doing the rounds here and I heard a plug for it on the radio. Not only did the penny drop but the whole loss change jar🤙

  34. This was an unusually tricky so and so from the Wednesday Master! Took me a lot longer than usual, but it was great fun to do. 8d once the penny dropped was my top clue.
    Thanks to Jay, and to the Kiwis for their review. And what a great photograph!

  35. Spent ages on 8d and not sure if it’s me or the setter but I still don’t like it as a clue! Worked out 17d from following the clue but it’s a word I’ve never heard of. Once again the Telegraph crossword is improving my vocabulary!

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