DT 29159 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29159

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29159

Hints and tips by 2Kiwis

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

Kia ora from Aotearoa.

Our weather lately has been pretty awful with a lot of wind and generally cold, wet and blustery. Today it all changed and we have a beautiful fine calm day. Almost tempted to bring more summery clothes out of the wardrobe.

Jay in his usual reliable form. It took us exactly the same time as last week so have left the difficulty rating unchanged.

Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.


1a     Follows a daughter taking part in demonstrations (7)
SHADOWS : ‘A’ from the clue and D(aughter) are inside demonstrations or performances.

9a     Competitor following popular top-class celebrities (8)
FINALIST : The abbreviation for following, the two letter popular and then the (1-4) theoretical register of top-class celebrities.

10a     Discover nature changes hearts (7)
UNEARTH : An anagram (changes) of NATURE plus the card players’ abbreviation for hearts.

11a     Married people must accept problem getting running water (8)
MILLRACE : A synonym for problem is inside M(arried) and then people or ethnic group.

12a     Fertilizer made from grass when hot (6)
POTASH : Another slang word for grass or marijuana, a synonym for when, and then H(ot).

13a     Fish eat mostly plastics at first, and rubbish (10)
CODSWALLOP : A three letter fish then another word for eat or ingest without its last letter, which is replaced by the first letter of plastics.

15a     Almost the last round house (4)
SEMI : A double definition. The first definition is the round that 9a has just won.

16a     Coach may see risk cut straddling horse (9)
CHARABANC : A horse originating in the Middle East is inside risk or gamble where the last letter is missing.

21a     Patch test regularly revealing performances (4)
ACTS : Alternate letters from two words in the clue.

22a     Promising support with Italian debts on paper (10)
PROPITIOUS : This support might be found in the front row of a scrum in the tournament about to start in Japan. Then, the abbreviation for Italian and the letters denoting debit notes.

24a     Some reports are pooh-poohing revolutionary works (6)
OPERAS : A reversed lurker (some …. revolutionary), hiding in the clue.

25a     Bullies should accept mistake, getting flowers (8)
COWSLIPS : A verbal synonym for bullies that refers to female animals of the same kind, surrounds a mistake or whoops.

27a     Mean to have nothing for a surplus (7)
OVERAGE : Start with a mean or middle number and replace the ‘A’ at the beginning with the letter signifying nothing.

28a     Listeners will receive call for some jewellery (8)
EARRINGS : The organs that operate as listeners surround a telephone call.

29a     To some extent, bewildered roadie backed bid (7)
ORDERED : Another reversed lurker (to some extent …. backed) hiding in the clue.


2d     Be suspended again the morning after (8)
HANGOVER : A word meaning ‘be suspended’ and then one meaning ‘again’ or for a second time.

3d     Striking a nervous response after short measure (8)
DRAMATIC : A short measure that could well be whisky, then ‘A’ from the clue and a nervous muscle spasm

4d     Voodoo women desire service in court (10)
WITCHCRAFT : W(omen), a desire or hankering and then the abbreviation for court surrounds the service that includes ‘The Red Arrows’.

5d     Mo has one car (4)
MINI : A mo or short time (this one has 60 seconds), and then the Roman numeral one.

6d     Dish bound to rise — flan with no casing (6)
PAELLA : Reverse a word meaning bound like a kangaroo and follow it with the two central letters of flan.

7d     Six score, most importantly (7)
VITALLY : The Roman numeral 6 and then score or add up.

8d     Try a lure, catching tons (7)
ATTEMPT : The abbreviation for tons is inside ‘A’ from the clue and lure or entice.

11d     Most of body supporting press and TV negotiators (9)
MEDIATORS : Start with a collective noun for press and TV, and follow this (supporting in a down clue) with body or trunk without its last letter.

14d     Show race vet working with no cold at all (10)
WHATSOEVER : An anagram (working) of SHOW RAcE VET once C(old) has been removed.

17d     Untroubled seeing vehicle needing energy for nothing (8)
CAREFREE : String together an automobile, the abbreviation for energy and then a word meaning for nothing or at no cost.

18d     Throttle of learner driver in unusual setting (8)
STRANGLE : The letter displayed on the vehicle of a learner driver is within a synonym for unusual.

19d     Class of agents protecting European Commission (7)
SPECIES : Agents like James Bond enclose E(uropean) C(ommission).

20d     Presumptuous, attacking footballer (7)
FORWARD : A double definition.

23d     At home, son must keep one set (6)
INLAID : The two letter ‘at home’ and then the Roman numeral one is inside son or boy.

26d     Call for break going up summit of Everest (4)
PAGE : The break that we hinted last week in relation to boarding trains gets reversed and followed by the first letter of Everest.

Quickie pun     pose    +    toffees    =    post office


71 comments on “DT 29159

  1. Finished in a smooth **/*** time, I thought I was going to fail in the NE corner, but got there eventually.

    I couldn’t really see the parsing for 15a, so thanks to the 2Ks for that, and I was unsure that a ‘mo’ = a ‘min’ in 5d. I’ve always assumed there were 60 mos in a min.

    For me, the word ‘coach’ (16a) always causes apprehension. There are just so many meanings of that word, it almost ranks alongside rows/rose in testing my cranial thesaurus.

    Many thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

  2. I found this slightly trickier than I’d expected it would be, but the usual enjoyment factor

    Thanks to Jay and the 2Ks

  3. Lovely puzzle. Thanks Jay. Nice blog too. Your picture for 20d made me laugh and your illustration for 6d has sorted our evening meal tonight so thanks to The 2 Kiwis for dinner and the blog.

  4. I really enjoyed this puzzle having scanned it and only come up with the answer to 22a I thought I was in impossible territory,
    But after a walk under a lovely blue sky came inspiration. The only one for which I needed help from New Zealand was 15 across. So many thanks to them and the setter.

  5. Another helping of Wednesday excellence – RD is going to be sorry he missed this one.
    I started smiling with the deliciously ridiculous Quickie pun and was still grinning when I reached the end of the Cryptic. There was a suggestion of a waver when it came to the ’round house’ but the trusty light bulb came to my rescue.

    No chance of isolating a favourite – it’s just a case of saying many thanks to Jay for all the fun along with thanks to our 2Ks for the review. I do hope that Carole has a pair of those 28a’s!

    1. I thought this was going to be difficult, having found only two answers in the top half of the puzzle. However, the bottom half was soon filled in and the rest just fell into place. Just into *** for difficulty and **** for enjoyment, thanks to Jay for an enjoyable puzzle. I liked 11a, 13a, 22a and 14d. Thanks to the 2 Kiwis for the review.

    2. Hi Jane.
      Actually I am the one most likely to be seen wearing things in my ears…… Hearing Aids.

  6. An entertaining solve today with just enough challenge. Failed to parse 27a but enjoyed working out 4d. Past cruciverbal experience led me to initially think around rivers for 25a. There are of course numerous interpretations of 15a but one to which this clue refers is surely a prefix rather than a stand-alone noun. It contains a chestnut but 22a was my Fav followed by the topical 13a. Thank you Jay and the 2Kiwis.

    1. Re 15a to be pernickety I should have said “the ones to which this clue refers are surely prefixes rather than stand-alone nouns”.

  7. Like others on first read through I thought this was going to be trouble, but gradually they began to fall and I ended up really enjoying it.

    I am another one who needed assistance from The Kiwis to explain my answer to 15a.

    Sometimes when doing these crosswords I am amazed by the words I dredge up from the depths of my mind and today that was 11a. I filled it in and looked it up and there it was!

    Many thanks to all the birds.

  8. Another thoroughly entertaining Wednesday puzzle with Jay as consistent as ever and completion on the borderline between a fast and a regular gallop – **/****.
    Candidates for favourite – 13a, 4d, and 17d – and the winner is 4d.
    Thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

    1. I think I asked last week whether there was such a thing as a slow gallop?

      Well, apparently, there is a regular gallop……and it has a border with a fast gallop.

  9. Could someone explain 24a please. Don’t understand the pooh-poohing bit other than using the first bit as part of the lurker.
    Also in 8d why is the Tons plural, you only need 1 T as the other is in the word for lure.
    I don’t understand 25a, why is a Cow Bullies. It can’t be a plural as the S is needed in the 2nd part of the clue. Even it was a plural surely it should be Bulls rather than Bullies which are an entirely different concept. All a bit sloppy.
    Not overly keen on this puzzle, too much guesswork involved. I find Jay puzzles are a bit marmite and i am the dislike side.
    Thx for the hints

    1. Brian, the pooh-poohing is just part of the reverse lurker, nothing more.
      T is the abbreviation for tons plural.
      To cow is also to bully (BRB- To subdue the spirit of).

      Nothing wrong with any of them, IMHO.

    2. I spread Marmite with a teaspoon and Jay is one of my favourite setters
      You once used to slate RayT crosswords until you learnt to appreciate them

      *edited* thanks Angellov & MalcolmR

    3. Everyone has missed my point as to why bullies was plural. I agree that to cow is to bully (possibly) but not as a plural.

      1. Because the required word is ‘cows’ (bullies, verb) with a singular mistake inserted ie COW – SLIP – S

          1. Did think of pointing out to you that DOES are a different type of animal, but that would make this thread even more convoluted. :smile:

  10. Got through this one quite well….except for 2d where I thought it was hungover rather than hangover. Still not clear why I am wrong. Sure someone will put me right.
    Needed help with the parsings .

    Thanks to the setter and to the 2Kiwis. Loved the pounamu earrings!

    1. Hello OM – I think ‘be suspended’ is the present tense ‘hang’ rather than ‘was suspended’ in the past tense, ‘hung’?

      1. Yes, it’s the difference between that commonly used term w.r.t. capital punishment ‘he was hung’ instead of ‘he was hanged’……

        Does anyone know why we English bother to argue the toss over these things? And whether it is different in English-speakers not from the UK?

          1. Bluebird
            It is not a case of ‘those people from the UK who don’t want to describe themselves as English…’.
            Take Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland for example.
            The vast majority of people who live in those three countries are not English and never have been.

            1. Yes, mcps, that was what I meant….they’re English speakers from the UK but they’re not English. I should have bracketed off “want to”. This is one of the drawbacks of English being both a nationality and the name of a tongue.
              If asked my nationality, I describe myself as British. I am solidly English by ancestry, apart from one branch which was French until the late C16, when we were expelled due to religious intolerance. My OH likes to think that Cornish is a separate nationality…..
              Given the current climate, I’d better stop the discussion before BD puts me in the naughty cupboard (more stringent than the step).

              1. Thanks for replying, Bluebird. Sorry if I misunderstood you. Here in Scotland the word ‘English’ is used very precisely, as I’m
                sure you know. All the best, mcps.

          2. Thanks folks.

            Not too sure that I like ‘the morning after’ being the definition of ‘hangover’, though I appreciate what Physicist says.

            I am afraid that I do get a bit irritated by people using ‘hung’ to mean ‘hanged’…..pictures are hung, people are hanged.

  11. I came unstuck on the last four letters of 11A (and was unfamiliar with the full answer) and still can’t see why ‘must” is included in the clue. It seems extraneous. Other than that, an enjoyable solve with 13 and 16A as favorites just because I love the words. Thanks J and the 2Ks.

  12. Very enjoyable. 16a was a word used by my gran although she said it ending with g. So 16a is my favourite. Ta to all.

  13. Enjoyable puzzle. Struggled a little with 16a as had never heard of that word. Always good to expand the vocabu… umm… list of words I know!


  14. Very enjoyable, as always on a Wednesday.
    I was also hungover at 2d before I saw the error of my ways.
    Smiles throughout. Please keep them coming, Jay!

  15. I agree with everything that has been said so far ! (more or less!) and love the old coach.
    Didn’t we have a luverly time the day we went to Blackpool – or was it Brighton?

          1. Fiddler’s Dram used to come into our village pub on their way back from gigs. I fondly remember making sandwiches for them while they treated us to a few songs.

  16. I found this a tad trickier than most Jay compositions but no less enjoyable. 15a was not my final entry but was my last clue to fully parse so becomes my favourite. A terrifically enjoyable puzzle from our Wednesday compiler.

    Thanks to all the birds.

  17. ***/****. Slow and steady solve for this really good puzzle. My favourite was 4d amongst many other good clues. Thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

  18. Northwest corner was a sticker for me today and I had to look at the hint for 1a then all fell into place. I had more bung in than normal so, for me, was not a straight forward solve. My COTD was 16a.

    Thanks to all concerned.

  19. I agree with everyone, except Brian – in other words I thought it was a lovely crossword.
    Slightly on the tricky side but, for me anyway, a shortage of anagrams always means that.
    I got myself into all kinds of trouble with 15 and 27a.
    I loved 13a which is definitely my favourite and reminds me of my Dad.
    I also liked 11 and 25a and 4d.
    Thanks to Jay and to the K’s.

  20. Another consummate offering from Jay, which I thought was a little on the tricky side. As usual, very elegantly clued throughout and very entertaining. 11a was a completely new word for me, and I am just about old enough to remember, as a child, a coach occasionally being referred to as a 16a. My least favourite type of cluing is usually the double definition but even that today was excellent so I’m going to award it COTD.

    Many thanks to Jay and to The 2Ks for a great review.

  21. Another hugely enjoyable offering from Jay, but a bit trickier than usual. I needed help in the SW corner, maybe “footballer” produced my blank spot.
    Fave was 13a, like Chris, I like the sound of it; like tintinnabulation, sounds like what it means – I think that’s called onomatopoeia!
    Thanks to Jay and to the 2Kiwis for the fun review.

  22. It took me a while to switch onto the Wednesday wavelength, but once I had it was plain sailing. Great fun as always and because of that 13a was favourite.
    Thanks to Jay, and to the Kiwis for their review.

  23. Very enjoyable 😃 ***/*** though I must confess to missing the reverse lurker at 29a 😳 Favourites 22a and 4d 😉 Thanks as always to Jay and the 2xKs who will be pleased to know that we are enjoying an Indian Summer here in the UK 🌞

  24. Took a while to get a toe hold on this one but once I started it began to come together really well… on a personal note I found this one of Jays best puzzles of late. The first pass only opened the SE corner.
    3*/4.5* favs 13& 16ac.
    Many thanks to Jay for a corker & the 2KWS for the review.

  25. Morning all.
    Surprised there is not a bit more discussion on 27a. We pondered whether the definition was MEAN or SURPLUS and had to reread the clue several times to be sure which way the substitution worked in the wordplay. As the first letter is not a checked one, either answer could work in the grid.
    Another beautiful fine day coming up for us.

  26. Thank you to Jay and the 2Kiwis for a very satisfying puzzle. One of those days when you run out of answers, go off and do some chores, and when you return, voila! The brain has been working all the time and the boxes fill in. I still don’t get 25a, in that when we lived in England, a cow was either the animal at the bottom of the garden, or something you called a really nasty woman, usually with a spiteful personality. Never heard of it to mean a bully. But then I have heard of bully beef, so perhaps that is it.

    1. We’re starting to regret making the (irrelevant to the parsing) connection between the two verb synonyms ‘to bully’ and ‘to cow’.
      We just thought it was an interesting aside to note. It has certainly sparked a few comments. :smile:

  27. I had similar difficulties to others with the parsing of a couple. 15a 27a and 2d but all is clear now thanks to the 2K’s. Before reading the comments I too was hoping they were Carole’s earrings. Thanks to Jay too.
    According to Mr Attenborough most Kiwis have never seen their national bird in the wild. Have you?

    1. Sir David is right of course. We have never seen one in the wild but in our tramping (bush-walking) days we might have heard their calls at night. There is one place on Stewart Island where a population of them can often be seen fossicking on the shoreline during daylight and that, if our memory is right, is where they were filmed for the documentary.

  28. Having spent last week finding everything more difficult than everyone else I find that this week I’m finding everything easier. Who knows why? I can see nothing wrong with any of the parsings. Re 2d suspend would have an a as the second letter suspend a u. Lots of things can be *u** only convicted murderers would have been hanged. All in all a super puzzle, too many favourites to mention. Many thanks to RayT and 2K’s.

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