DT 29235 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29235

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29235

Hints and tips by Huckleberry Finn

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BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment **

Good Morning from Lynmouth in North Devon where we have been based for a long weekend enjoying the natural beauty all around. The high tide swell on Saturday night was an awesome sight. The drive through The Valley of the Rocks and onward was exhilarating (frightening). The pubs of Exmoor have been explored and found to be in good order with particular mention to The London Inn at Molland. Back to the grind later this morning.

I enjoyed today’s puzzle which should suit any beginners having a go. The long clue at 12 across may seem a tad inaccessible but the checkers should help and if the wordplay seems impenetrable then my hint should be helpful.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


7a    Approve of English language sweeping across Germany (7)
ENDORSE: Begin with the abbreviation for English. Find a language spoken in the far north of Europe. Place this language around the letter used to denote Germany in the IVA system

9a    Rush round place in unrestrained bout of extravagance (7)
SPLURGE: A sudden rush of a crowd perhaps surrounds the abbreviation for place

10a    Best chapter about current theme (5)
TOPIC: A word meaning the best and the Latin abbreviation for about sit either side of the electrical abbreviation for current

11a    Manchester has one chaplains condemned (4,5)
SHIP CANAL: Anagram (condemned) of CHAPLAINS

12a    Go back briefly, then off out to lunch, having these? (4,2,3,6)
BATS IN THE BELFRY: An anagram (off) of BRIEFLY THEN follows the reversal (back) of a synonym of the word go where go means an attempt

13a    An American theatre award presented to male opposite (7)
ANTONYM: Begin with the word An. Add an American theatre award (Theatre of New York) Add the abbreviation for male

16a    Indian city featured in not very intelligent plan (7)
DIAGRAM: Unhelpful hint. Place an Indian city inside a word meaning not very bright. Which is merely rewriting the clue and is hardly a hint at all. Helpful hint. Place the location of The Taj Mahal inside a word which when appertaining to light means not shining brightly or clearly.

19a    Pioneers encountered in rallies around France (8,7)
FOUNDING FATHERS: A four part charade. 1. A word meaning encounter 2 The word in from the clue 3 A word meaning gathers 4 The abbreviation for France. There is a tiny bit of placement work suggested by the clue

23a    Popular comprehensive, for the most part (2,7)
IN GENERAL: A regular word suggested by popular is followed by a word meaning comprehensive

24a    Drink sovereign rejected (5)
LAGER: Reverse a word meaning royal to find a popular pub drink

25a    Spear I’d dropped in English river (7)
TRIDENT: Drop the letters I and D (I’d) into an English river. Which English river? The third longest.

26a    Be cruel to journalists after work (7)
OPPRESS: Place a generic term for journalists after the abbreviation of a large scale musical work


1d    Green supporter, conserving energy, showing bit of backbone? (8)
VERTEBRA: The heraldic green and a supporter of breasts surround the abbreviation for energy

2d    Fake news about king causing conflict (8)
FRICTION: A lie or made up story sits around the abbreviation for Rex

3d    Debt is getting out of hand in flat (6)
BEDSIT: Anagram (getting out of hand) of DEBT IS

4d    Notice short ambassador’s hat (6)
CLOCHE: A word meaning to notice something has its last letter removed (short) An Ambassador, His Excellency follows

5d    Hand over change (8)
TRANSFER: A double definition How a footballer moves from team to team

6d    Very honest about line unknown (6)
REALLY: A word meaning honest is followed by the abbreviation for line. A mathematical unknown finishes the job off

8d    Leading journalist turned up in terminal (5)
DEPOT: Leading here works in the same way as best does in 10 across. It is followed by the abbreviation for a chief journalist. The whole lot needs reversing (turned up)

9d    Fixed allowance and gratuity in post (7)
STIPEND: Place a gratuity given to staff for good service inside a word meaning to post something. I would like to welcome this lovely word back to crosswordland after an absence of many years. It’s partner in crime SINECURE may well be about to return too

14d    Film of tense game, with Tiger beaten at the end (4,4)
TRUE GRIT: Begin with the abbreviation for Tense. Add the initials of the game played at Twickenham. Add an anagram (beaten) of TIGER

15d    Marine disorientated on top of Trump Tower (7)
MINARET: An all too easy anagram (disorientated) of MARINE plus the initial (top) letter of Trump

17d    Ruminant: one leapt out (8)
ANTELOPE: Anagram (out) of ONE LEAPT

18d    Woman who teaches may be married, I repeat (8)
MISTRESS: The abbreviation for married is followed by the letter I from the clue followed by an emphasis

19d    Lively one kept in iron pen (6)
FEISTY: The letter I from the clue sits inside the chemical symbol for Iron an the pen of a farm animal

20d    Jackass departs on cue (6)
DONKEY: The abbreviation for departs is followed by the word on from the clue. A synonym of the word cue follows. This synonym is rather stretched

21d    First of fields set aside, left unploughed (6)
FALLOW: As the clue clearly says you may begin with the first letter of the word Fields. Then find a word that means to set aside or give the necessary time or opportunity for.

22d    Bird in gale raging over Spain (5)
EAGLE: Anagram (raging) of GALE followed by the IVR letter for Spain.

Quickie Puns:

Top line: date+raider=day trader

Bottom line: source+puns=saucepans


61 comments on “DT 29235

  1. A very Monday-ish crossword – with a few old friends in the mix

    Thanks to our setter and the many of many names

  2. A nice comfortable start to Monday, no real issues a 1.5*\3.5*. I thought 12A was a bit dated, but on looking it up I see it is a film, a song, a book, a tv series, a plant and an eccentric. I often wonder what non native speakers think of some of our phrases, bats, perhaps….

    Thanks to HF and setter.

  3. Bottom half went in much easier than the top. Agree with comment on 20d.
    Missed the anagram at 12a but still managed to get the answer
    No electronic help needed for this one!

    1. I always thought 4d was something to put over seedlings. Never looked upon it as a hat and I’m not young!

  4. Thank you Huckleberry. Glad you enjoyed your holiday. It revived memories of the flood of 1952 Was it really that long ago?
    Found the 2 long across clues difficult to parse but they had to be what they were.
    Lovely to see 9d back and 19 down is a good word too.
    COTD? Difficult. Perhaps 11a

  5. It was an enjoyable (****) although pretty straightforward (**) offering for this Monday crossword. I reallly liked 12a but agreed with Huck about the synonym in 20d. Many thanks for the hints. Try the cliff walk from Lynmouth and Lynton to the Valley of the Rocks. It’s not for those who have fear of heights, however. Thanks to the setter.

  6. A fun and very accessible puzzle to start the solving week. 1d was just about my favourite ahead of 16a. Thanks to the double punner and MP.

  7. I was getting worried about this one, with only three across clues completed on the first pass. However, the downs appeared more amenable, and I had the grid completed in **/*** time.

    I agree with MP about the second half of 20d.

    I have two COTD, the long 12a and 19a.

    Thanks to all.

  8. Must be me, i found this very very hard at least **** for difficulty. Too many wordy obscure clues.
    Thx for the hints.
    Def not for me.

    1. I think the Quickie must be this setter as well as I can’t even finish that! Just not on the right wavelength at all today.

      1. I am never able to finish the quickie, I don’t think I have ever finished one, I find them harder than the cryptic.

        1. I know exactly what you mean – I have to solve the whole thing mentally before I’ll put pen to paper
          With a cryptic, you can usually be pretty sure when you have the right answer

          1. I agree with you and Brian and HIYD – with a cryptic crossword as long as you can justify your answer it’s not easy to get one wrong but with a quickie you only have to go astray a little bit and it screws up the rest of it.
            I think it’s probably a while since I’ve drawn attention to the Two Ronnies Crossword sketch which makes me laugh however many times I watch it.

            1. Totally agree Kath. Better half does the quickie but I sometimes try to finish when he gets stuck, and I find one wrong, but very plausible, answer has made the puzzle very taxing.

              1. That sort of thing goes on in our house too, specially when our Elder Lamb is here. A long time ago now she was doing a quickie and was stuck in one corner – the clue was ‘of the nose’ – a sensible person would have written ‘nasal’ as the answer but she had ‘nosey’. :roll:

            2. Have to agree on both counts. Cryptics are easier than quickies and that two Ronnie sketch is the bees knees of comedy!!!! Fav today 13a. (How many candles?)

  9. A gentle start to the week. I do agree about the synonym in 20d. On consulting the BRB, I could not find any reference to the word being a synonym for cue. Mind you, it was a very brief glance through quite a number of definitions.

    On the whole, a very enjoyable solve. I did need a couple of HF’s wonderful hints but managed the majority. Quite a number of well constructed clues in this offering but my favourites are 13a and 2d.

    I preferred the bottom line pun to the top.

    Grateful thanks, as ever, to the setter and to Huckleberry Finn

    1. Chambers Thesaurus has “cue” as the second synonym of “key”.
      I was heading for a 1* solve but took an age to see 9a and 6d, pushing it up to 3*s for difficulty. Nevertheless, a good puzzle. Thanks to setter and blogger.

  10. Bottom half in complete with no problems including the long 19 across. Top half was more reluctant to surrender. Eventually got 12a which let me in to the rest although I did not fully parse it. Thanks MP. Favourites in no particular order 13a, 1d, and 16a. Thanks setter!

  11. Certalnly aMonday puzzle.I had put the wrong answer at 19d. which made 19a wrong as well but eventually sorted that.I wonder if others also put frisky for 19 d.

  12. 12a was a bung-in, so thanks Miffypops for the review. I wouldn’t have understood it otherwise. Thanks too setter.

  13. It took me a while to get going with the top half which I found more difficult than the bottom one.
    9a took ages and was my last answer.
    I got myself into a bit of a pickle with why 19a was what it obviously had to be.
    I liked 13a and 1d.
    My favourite was 19d even though the clue made me think of Hannibal Lector which gives me the heebie-jeebies.
    Thanks to the setter and to HF aka MP.

  14. Very straightforward today & completed in ** time with 20A my COTD.
    Agree with the comments regarding the quick crossword which took me virtually as long to complete.

  15. No, Huck, not only 1* for difficulty, even for the super bright! I found this enjoyable, even though I had to work for it.
    I didn’t think anything was obscure. I solved 12a from the checkers, figuring there was an anagram somewhere there, one of my last in.
    I liked 19d, but 9d and 13a were contenders.
    Thanks to our setter and to Huckleberry Finn for his fun review!

    1. BDs rating Merusa. Not Huck Finns. I was too busy being led astray by Thomas Sawyer. What’s the use you learning to do right when it’s troublesome to do right and ain’t no trouble to do wrong, and the wages is just the same?

      1. Yes, of course, I didn’t remember that BD always does the rating for our Monday reviewer. He’s a wise owl, that way he dodges the bullets!

    2. I am in agreement here on today’s puzzle and concur with your faves maybe adding 1d too.
      Thanks to the setter and Huck.

      “My new clothes was all greased up and clayey, and I was dog-tired.”

  16. Late on parade today. I have to admit to being in the “quite tricky” camp, certainly more than 1* for difficulty (doesn’t BD do the ratings on Monday?).
    I parsed 10a as a word meaning the best (top) and the abbreviation for chapter (c) about (sitting outside) the letter for electrical current (i) by the way?

    Many thanks to the setter and to MP for his usual excellent blog.

    1. Quite right Steven. It surprises me how I know it at the time of solving but it changes by the time I come to write the blog.

  17. I see I am in good company in having found the South less thorny than the North. A couple of unparsed bung-ins – 12a and 19a. Not sure about 3d. Otherwise it was a pleasant exercise but with no particular Fav. Thank you Mysteron and MP.

  18. I too found the South a write in, but the North much trickier. I did not know that 4d was a hat, I thought it was just a thing I put on the lettuces in early spring. 9a was a tricky devil too, not a word I think I have ever used.
    Never enjoyed the HF/TS books, but Mark Twain came up with some cracking quotations.
    Thanks MP and Mr.Ron

  19. I started it early this morning when I found it a tad tricky but polished it off just now in a short time.
    I guess I am an evening person.
    Thanks Miffypops and Mr Ron.

  20. I had a real wavelength problem today. When I gave in and looked at the hints I could see it really wasn’t terribly tough, I just kept taking the wrong fork in the road. Blaming it on the smell of paint affecting my thinking.

  21. Fairly gentle start to the week with no real problems encountered. I guess that it’s me age guv, but I’ll go with 14d as favourite.
    Thanks to the setter, and to Huck for the review.

  22. I completely agree that the bottom half was easier. I always start bottom right and work to top left. Thanks for a pleasant puzzle and for the comments from my fellow solvers.

  23. I’m with Brian on the difficulty as I found it harder than most seemed to particularly in the NE corner. I’ve struggled on Mondays for a few weeks now so I guess I’m not on the same wavelength as our double pun setter but I got there. Favourite 11a, clever anagram. Many thanks to the setter and HF.

  24. Not wishing to be perverse, but I’m finding this one by far and away more difficult than I did yesterday’s prize puzzle. I’ve been in and out of it on and off for hours and I still only have 9 clues answered and two those were through cheating. I will continue through sheer bloody mindedness, but currently its driving me potty – grrrrrrr.

    1. Following Little Dave’s comment about beginning at the bottom (which was indeed easier by far than the top) thanks LD and with Hoofit’s comment about lettuces (a great hint, thanks HYD) I am now finished – phew. Thanks to today’s setter, Miffypops, Little Dave and Hoofit :-)

  25. Big Dave Have you been hacked ?I got a message from you ( apparently) saying “is this you?”. I got a similar message some years ago with a video attached and unfortunately I opened it. I had to close down that FB profile.

    1. I got one of those this afternoon too but realised it wasn’t right as BD would be the last person who’d start a message with OMG

  26. As an upbeat update, after giving up on this puzzle, I had a stab at the bonus Monday cryptic #582, and absolutely loved it. More proof of the wavelength thingy, as you don’t get any hints for that one.

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