DT 29338 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29338

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29338

Hints and tips by 2Kiwis

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Kia ora from Aotearoa.

We’ve had a couple of very windy cold days lately. We were even persuaded that it was time to light the wood-burner last evening – the first for the season but suspect that it will become the norm from now on. Today the wind has died away and we had a beautiful blue sky to lift our spirits on our regular morning beach walk.
Another top quality Wednesday puzzle from Jay.

Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.


1a     Queries cap to be fixed for novel form (10)
PICARESQUE : An anagram (to be fixed) of QUERIES CAP.

6a     Catch onshoot! (4)
TWIG : A double definition. The shoot is found on a tree or shrub.

10a     The girl has a fine bundle (5)
SHEAF : A feminine personal pronoun, then ‘A’ from the clue and F(ine).

11a     Criticise players eating out with no end of fun (9)
CASTIGATE : Players found in a theatre and an anagram (out) of EATI(n)G with the last letter of fun removed.

12a     Loose grasp of property tenure? (8)
FREEHOLD : Loose or unrestrained and then another word for grasp.

13a     Married man originally a lady! (5)
MADAM : The abbreviation for married and the Bible’s original man.

15a     Rattle never developed by one in France (7)
UNNERVE : The French word for one and an anagram (developed) of NEVER.

17a     Retainer dispatched to collect regular bits of trivia (7)
SERVANT : A synonym for dispatched surrounds the second, fourth and sixth letters of trivia.

19a     Discovered novel scheme must be exploitation (7)
OVERUSE : Discovered novel tells us to remove the covering letters, and a then a usually cunning scheme.

21a     Reported facility on net swing (7)
TRAPEZE : A homophone of a word meaning facility follows net or capture.

22a     A little tear? (5)
SHRED : A double definition. The first is often used in relation to evidence.

24a     Religious establishment accommodating Italian will get precedence (8)
PRIORITY : A religious establishment containing monks includes the abbreviation for Italian.

27a     Turn, as let off as a consequence (9)
RESULTANT : An anagram (off) of TURN AS LET.

28a     Harden against some from Manchester United making a comeback (5)
INURE : A reverse lurker, hiding in the clue.

29a     Bear has no time to be smooth (4)
SAND : Remove the T(ime) from bear or tolerate.

30a     Dreary pessimist knew battle is lost (3,7)
WET BLANKET : An anagram (is lost) of KNEW BATTLE.


1d     Advance when yours truly leaves job (4)
POST : Remove a first person personal pronoun from advance or put forward in debate.

2d     Unambiguous article on church will get authorization (9)
CLEARANCE : Unambiguous or obvious, then the two letter indefinite article and the Anglican Church.

3d     Sack head of finance in anger (5)
RIFLE : Anger or infuriate contains the first letter of finance.

4d     Scouse is different across river — that’s sweet! (7)
SUCROSE : An anagram (is different) of SCOUSE includes R(iver).

5d     Positive aspects of winning teams (7)
UPSIDES : Winning or in a superior position and then a synonym for teams.

7d     Walked off, missing kilometres in wooded area (5)
WEALD : Remove the single letter abbreviation for kilometres from an anagram (off) of WALKED.

8d     Dull affair that shows intelligence (4,6)
GREY MATTER : The colour associated with dull and then affair or concern.

9d     With no source of sugar, amrita is a poor drink (3,5)
TIA MARIA : An anagram (poor) of AMRITA I(s) A without the first letter of sugar.

14d     Peevish types no longer available! (3,2,5)
OUT OF SORTS : A 3,2 phrase meaning no longer available and then types or varieties.

16d     Circles old nurse upset (8)
ROUNDELS : An anagram (upset) of OLD NURSE.

18d     Stunned when lorry gets both of us on board (9)
AWESTRUCK : A two letter synonym for ‘when’ contains the pronoun signifying both of us, and then a lorry.

20d     Pay for person living abroad to accommodate one European (7)
EXPIATE : A person living abroad, like regular commenter Chris, contains Roman numeral one, and finally E(uropean).

21d     Couple however turned up this in the laundry room (4-3)
TWIN-TUB : Another word for couple and then the reversal of a synonym for ‘however’.

23d     Sticky stuff keeping son in check? (5)
RESIN : Put the abbreviation for son inside the restraint that can be used on a horse.

25d     Side order of cream in tea taken occasionally? (5)
RAITA : Alternate letters from the phrase ‘cream in tea’.

26d     Made an advance fast (4)
LENT : A double definition. The fast starts on Ash Wednesday.

 We always find it hard to pick a favourite on Wednesdays. We’ll go for 14d this week.

Quickie pun    billows    +    tears    =    below stairs

96 comments on “DT 29338

  1. This was flying along in an easy ** time, until I was left with just 1a and 19a. I was aware that a pangram was on the cards and that J and Q were, as yet, absent. That indicated to me that 1a was probably an anagram, so I had a bung in which I had never heard of.

    That meant the J had to be in 19a. Which it wasn’t. I saw the correct answer, but, for some reason, parsing it took me into *** time for the whole puzzle.

    Greatly enjoyed, so thanks to Jay and the 2Ks, I’m off into the garden with a cup of tea.

  2. Well I obviously haven’t had the right breakfast cereal today. Well into 3* territory, but on rereading, some obvious lights, with hindsight. Thanks Setter & 2 ks.

  3. Another friendly and extremely enjoyable Jay crossword so thank you to him and the 2Ks

    There’s a crossword elsewhere today where the solutions link across the grid and that led me to look at this one and wonder whether a 12a 13a would 15a their 17a :)

    We had to turn the central heating back on on Monday which was a surprise after having to look for a cool shady spot on Sunday afternoon. Lovely warm sun again today – the reed warblers have returned and were singing away so I don’t suppose it will be long before the first cuckoo arrives

    1. I’ve never heard a cuckoo in L I despite living on the river. It’s. about ten years since I heard one in Warwickshire

      1. That’s rather sad, although you do reach a point where you wish they’d shut up and give a different sort of a bird a chance to be heard

        1. We used to be inundated with blue jays at our old house, beautiful birds, but sadly awful screechers.

  4. Jay in slightly trickier mood today I thought but no less enjoyable for it, with three new words for me, all easily obtainable from the wordplay. My only question is surely the homophone in 21a is a synonym of ‘facilitate’ not ‘facility’. Other than that all excellent with 8d and 6a joint favourites.
    Many thanks to the 3 birds for their excellent works.

  5. Not super fast but I didn’t have too many problems today. Managed to parse everything although 1a was a new term for me. No real stand out clues so ***/** for me. Thanks to setter and 2ks.

  6. Another well-constructed and enjoyable puze from Jay (**/****). I loved the anagram at 1a, which remknded me of dim and distant A-level English Literature classes. 30a and 21a were great clues too, but there were too many to mention them all. Thanks to the Kiwis for the hints. We have bee having hard morning frosts again here. Central Heating definitely required at our house too. Thanks to Jay for giving us something good to think of. The evening news is so grim, especially presented by Huw Edwards in bulldog chewing a wasp mode. Perhaps we should put more positive items into news broadcasts as they did in WW2. Heaven knows there are lots of great efforts going on to cope with this crisis. Lets celebrate them.

    1. 1a reminds me of another book to include on my expanding list of lockdown rereads – Henry Fielding’s The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling. Fairly certain it is described as a picaresque novel – was also a great Oscar winning film by Tony Richardson starring the late, great Albert Finney.

      1. Yes, that’s the novel we studied and we were exhorted to read Joseph Andrews and Richardson’s Pamela too as I remember. It was around the time that the film was made too.

    2. The Good Companions was described as 1ac on the cover of the edition I read. It took a while to realise that it didn’t say picturesque. Once learned never forgotten so 1ac went straight in today

    3. I’ve stopped watching the BBC as they only ever seem to report the bad news/ worst case scenario and haven been doing so for some years now. That coupled with their left wing bias makes the BBC unwatchable for me.

      1. Ditto. The news is alarming. Must be terrifying for elderly people living alone. They seem to thrive on the deaths rather than the recoveries including the wonderful old lady of 106. Not a great deal of reporting about what has been achieved including the building of the huge Nightingale Temporary Hospitals which thankfully are underused at present. If journalists and posters on social media spent time and effort in helping where they can instead of playing the blame game and being wise after the event the world might be a better place.

      2. The BBC is digging a hole for itself. The media barrage after the daily briefing eclipses the bias and negativity on Question Time.

        1. I’m rather baffled by your view that the ‘media barrage’ after the daily briefing comes from the BBC. The daily briefing is organised by Downing Street and the BBC only gets to ask one question (out of about eight). Most of the more critical questions come from right-wing papers like the Mail and Express (and the excellent Beth Rigby from Sky).
          Would you rather that the questions were restricted to statements like “You are all doing a wonderful job!” or don’t you want the government to be questioned at all?

            1. Crikey, is that your best argument? All good journalists move around – Peston also worked for the Independent, the Independent on Sunday and the FT but he currently works for ITV so are ITV responsible for the ‘media barrage’ as you call it?
              David Icke also worked at one time for the BBC – I suppose you blame them for his lunatic views!

  7. Good fun and challenging, although I got hopelessly tied in knots by 1d – I knew the answer but not why. ***/****. Thanks to all.

      1. Welcome to the blog

        If you remove the I (yours truly) from a verb meaning to advance an argument, you get a synonym for job

  8. Following in the footsteps of proXimal’s X-less pangrams, we now have a J-less pangram from Jay. Where will this end, I wonder?

    The top half of this excellent puzzle went in at my 2* rate, but the bottom half proved much more challenging in par 4* time, so overall my difficulty rating is 3* and enjoyment rating 4.5* with 13a my favourite.

    Many thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

  9. Not quite up there with the best of Jay in my view. All very straightforward & finished in under ** time with no parsing issues & another reverse lurker spot. No particular favourites today but as you’d expect from Jay very enjoyable. Thanks to all.

  10. I did have to check the meaning of 1a in the dictionary, never having heard of the word. My A level English was probably before the word was “invented”. I took 21a to be trap = net (as in tadpoles or butterflies) and Eze (ease) = facility. I’m sure there are other interpretations. No real favourites. Lovely and sunny on the Kent coast this morning.

  11. Gave myself a problem by choosing the wrong word from the 1d clue as the definition – ‘pass’ seemed OK as the answer but left me pondering about the job minus yours truly. Took a while for the proverbial penny to drop.
    Last two to fall were 6a & 8d and they get podium places along with the Quickie pun which made me smile.

    Thanks to Jay for the Wednesday 8d workout and thanks also to our 2Ks – pleased to hear that you can still enjoy your beach walks.

    1. How I would love a beach walk! Stranded in Mallorca with further full lockdown, and I mean full, proposed until 11 May. All the construction and factory workers went back yesterday but the hoi polloi have to stay where we are, inside.

      Enjoyed this puzzle, though – right up my alley. You all continue to keep me ( relatively) sane**/****

      1. I went to Mallorca when it had a pronounceable J in it. Next year we went to Ibiza with Z. Happy memories before it all got built up and spoilt

  12. Lovely puzzle as ever from Jay. How does he do it? No problems just keep on moving on putting in what I can and getting closer with each pass. I’m glad 26d was clued as simply as it was. The answer appeared in yesterday’s Toughie and was really difficult to solve.
    Thanks as ever to Jay and to The 2Ks for an excellent blog

  13. A very good Wednesday puzzle with plenty of thought required but no need to use any of the white space on my printed sheet for completion at a gallop – 2.5*/4*.
    1a had to be checked in the BRB and I was pleased to see that Jay’s clue for 26d was much less convoluted than Silvanus’s Tuesday Toughie clue for the same word.
    Candidates for favourite – 11a, 21a, 14d, and 26d – and the winner is 14d.
    Thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

  14. An enjoyable puzzle, with just enough head-scratching. Knew 1a but not what it meant. Term invented 1810, apparently, although as a novel form popular centuries before then.
    Haven’t heard a cuckoo in years, unfortunately. Our barn owls are around though and hopefully nesting for the 20th year, although their usual nesting box has blown of its perch.

  15. I must be the only one who struggled with this crossword. It took me far longer than normal, but I did manage to finish it by chipping away on and off. Looking over it, I’m not sure why I made such hard work of it. I knew that 1a was an anagram, but had to put the letters into a scrambler then google it. Many thanks to Jay for a real 8d workout, and thanks too to the 2Ks. The bluetit in my nest box has laid several eggs now, but I can’t count them as she has so many feathers on top. We just catch glimpses of the eggs as she shuffles round the box.

  16. It was just a question of perseverance with the very fair clues. SE was the trickiest corner for me. 1a not a part of my regular vocabulary these days. 13a raised a smile and was probably my Fav. Thank you Jay and the 2Kiwis.

  17. Excellent puzzle. All went in quite steadily but did require some thinking time. Last in was 1d. I’ll award it top marks for the satisfaction it gave me when the proverbial penny dropped. Thanks Jay. Spotted your J-less pangram as well.

  18. It took a while to fathom out Jay’s offering today but I got there in the end. It was a cracking puzzle and I am starting to look forward to a Jay Wednesday. Like Jane, I could not get beyond “pass” for 1d for a while. The fact I couldn’t parse it prevented my writing it in. Several clues raised as smile such as 13a and 21d. My COTD is 11a.

    Grateful thanks to Jay and also to the 2Kiwis for the excellent hints.

    1. I too found it difficult to choose between pass and post so was my last one in after 1a. The latter is to me an unfamiliar word but with the checkers it had to be. Just googled it to check I was right after inserting,

  19. I thought having an anagram of a obscure word was a bit mean for the first clue. Have i missed something along the way, when did ‘novel’ mean removing the outer letters as in 19a? 22a was weak as was 20d.
    Usual Jay puzzle, tricky and not much fun.
    Thx for the hints

    1. Not sure what you’re thinking, but dis-covered ‘novel’ is ‘ove’ followed by ‘ruse’

      I agree that this is a usual Jay puzzle – excellent and very entertaining

    2. Brian, dis-covered is a ploy used by setters to indicate the removal of the outer letters (the cover) of the adjacent word. You should try to remember it, comes up quite a lot.

    3. Agree, didn’t like either of those. Spent far too long working on the 1a anagram, and would never have got it as I have never seen that word before. Nor “ove” as novel…

  20. This one was a bit of a rascal it was a puzzle of two halves. Liked 1a memories of school a lifetime ago. Bottom half went in easily, top half resisted for some time.
    Thanks to 2ks and setter

    1. Oooh, I was the opposite! Top half went in easily and the bottom took longer. I was top heavy for a while you might say.

  21. Another brilliant Jay puzzle, which I thoroughly enjoyed and finished in good 1.5* time, with many highlights. Top stars today: 18d, 20d, and 21a, with many runners-up. I was especially amused to be reminded of yesterday’s Toughie and the one answer I never twigged, 26d. Thanks to the 2K’s and to Jay–now the proprietor of a J-less gem. 1.5* / ****

    Terrible tornado destruction throughout the Carolina Lowcountry and elsewhere across the state, with hundreds of poor souls now homeless. And now rain on top of all that. Worst outbreak in 36 years.

  22. I am in the camp that found this more difficult than recent Jay puzzles and l had to use a machine to get 1a.l also put pass for 1d and had to use your hint to put myself right.A fine puzzle and a good blog.

  23. Still working on this one from Jay, and hope to complete over lunch. But was so amused to see the picture at 21d, thanks to 2Kiwis. We were married for a year before we could afford a washing machine. My brother worked at Hotpoint and he got us a special price on a twin tub, which we went and picked up. It just fit in the back of our 1100. And so thrilled to get it. Simple times.

    1. I was going to say thank you to you and Bluebird for taking my paper ironing question seriously. those twin tubs were wonderful
      because we started off with the whites, then coloureds, and then when the water was really murky in went the dusters. Real
      hot water savers.

  24. I am not used to these early starts again. Up at sparrows fart, I printed the puzzles off but forgot to pick them up before leaving for work – Doh
    I was 14d when I got home but I romped through this in a really fast (for me) time.
    I didn’t notice the J less pangram.and the only delay was of my own making when I assumed the dash between catch on — shoot! was best filled with FIRE.
    I loved loads of this puzzle but wish to single out 7d as it helped me “catch on” to the mistake with 6a and also because my current fave TV prog “The Repair Shop” is filmed at the 7d and Downland museum!

    1. Always love reading your bits of news, John, and I’m definitely with you as far as The Repair Shop is concerned – one of the best offerings on TV in a long while.

    2. My neighbour wants to take his parents bank book to the repair shop. It had over a quarter of a million pounds in when his father died. After several years of paying for carers for his Mum there is now less than ten grand. Do you think they could restore it to its former glory?

      1. Maybe. Is this the same chap who sold his Aston Martin recently?
        I have a couple of things I would love to take to the repair shop.
        We have a family bible that has Dis-covered itself. The Bible is Gaelic and the only bits I can read are the marginalia where 6 or 7 times Great grandad Murdo Bee started the family tree on the Isle of Mull. If I could get it reassembled without destroying the characterful marks on the binding it would be nice. There is a thumb-shaped wear mark in the front cover where he held it as he preached. It would be a shame if that was erased from history.
        I also have a theodolite in mahogany case and leather protective cover that is showing signs of its long use. I believe it was used to survey the Aswan High Dam and Dad inherited it when he did some work for the original owners. Dad started to repair it but never finished it and I would love to get that seen too.
        The bible would probably have a more emotional story to it and the theodolite would give tasks to more of the experts at the repair shop.

        1. Let me know if you find a reasonable book repairer – I have an 1845 family bible in a sad state of repair!

  25. Very nice crossword 😃 ***/*** Favourites 13a & 23d, 1a was a new word for me 😳 Thanks to Jay and the 2xKs

  26. I enjoyed this when I completed it this morning, but as usual for me, I did not notice the pangram; j-less or otherwise.

    I do remember thinking that our younger solvers might struggle with 21d, do they even still exist outside of a museum?

    Many thanks to the 2Ks and Jay.

  27. ***/****. Very enjoyable puzzle as usual for a Wednesday. Was pushed into *** time due to 1d and 29a. Two real d’oh moments. Thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

  28. I very rarely contribute on here, preferring to enjoy the crosswords and others’ comments. I have been very surprised today, though, in that 7d uses k as an abbreviation for kilometres and nobody appears to have complained – surely that can’t be right?!

    1. Welcome from us too David.
      We also looked a second time at the K despite it being in common use here especially relating to vehicle speeds and distances.

  29. Another really enjoyable Wednesday crossword.
    I made it much more difficult than it really was by just not thinking very straight.
    I’m not sure I knew 1a although having been doing crosswords for as long as I have I must have met it before somewhere.
    Missed the significance of ‘originally’ in 13a so my ‘lady’ ended up being ‘Mandy’ which scuppered 8d until I had a rethink. :roll:
    Lots of good clues including 24a and 3 and 18d. My favourite was 14d.
    Thanks to Jay and to the K’s.

  30. I did actually finish this at lunchtime but then got sidetracked into the garden where my runner beans (saved from
    last year) are growing nicely in their loo roll centre cases, ready to put the whole thing in the ground without disturbing
    the roots AND preventing the snails from getting at the young shoots. Just call me Adam the Gardener.
    A great pleasure to sit down with this in the sunshine, just got hung up over 22a because I put in SCRAP making it difficult
    for 16 d.. 1a is a lovely word and, as has been said, a reminder of Eng. Lit. classes at grammar school in Wimbledon.
    Thank you everyone.

    1. I have a copy of Adam the Gardener that belonged to my Father-in-Law. Great book that started as a strip in a paper, I think.

  31. Morning all.
    And a very early one it is too as it is only 5am here.
    We did not notice the J-less pangram until we read the first comment here. As RD says, it looks like Jay has borrowed this from proXimal and then we considered the possibility that he has acknowledged this in the Quickie which uses all the letters except J and X.
    21d was particularly nostalgic for us. A Hoovermatic Twin Tub was the machine we had many years ago when our twins were born and disposable nappies did not exist. We averaged 33 (yes we counted them) nappies per day so the poor old machine had to work very hard indeed.
    Stay well and try to keep sane everyone.

    1. sixteen and a half per child per day! that is about every 90 mins. What were you feeding them?
      We had a twin tub too but it died when my little sister decided to use it to wash the dishes!

  32. I really enjoyed this one, especially 1a and 16 d . Last one in 6 a, took me a while to catch on! Thanks to Jay and the Kiwis. Snow squalls in S. Ontario today.

  33. Failed 1a – needed electronic assistance. Had heard of the word but did not know its meaning.

  34. Needed too many hints when I returned to this. Didn’t really feel like a Jay puzzle. Probably grumpy as I couldn’t solve the 1a anagram. And 19a gave me grief. Others I bunged in but couldn’t parse without the hints. You can’t win them all. Thanks to Jay and the 2Kiwis. Oh, sitting by a log fire, that sounds heavenly. Not here, it’s 87F right now, hotter than normal for April.

      1. I might have been here for 36 years but I still miss the seasons, but understand you are more comfortable in our hot weather. However, nothing beats curling up in front of a log fire with a good book, particularly on a cold and stormy night. I guess you can take the girl out of England, but you can’t take England out of the girl.

        1. You’re dead right! My Mum never forgot a “nice” frosty morning and a roaring fire, even after 60+ years, she lived to be 92. Growing up in the tropical bush, I never could adjust to the cold.

  35. Late today for this lovely Jay distraction. I did some before having to go out, a friend kindly took me, to the podiatrist to get my toenails cut! I had another friend stop by when I came home, so it’s been pretty busy around here. My next project is to get my hair cut, I’m beginning to look a bit like Polk salad Annie, but as I’m not going anywhere, perhaps it can wait.
    As y’all know, I’m a Jay fan, loved this one. Fave was 14d. I used e-help for the anagram at 1a after staring at it forever. I think I’ve heard of 21d but have no idea what it is.
    Thanks to Jay and the 2Kiwis for the fun.

    1. Never heard of, or even seen, a twin-tub either. See what we in America have missed? Jay continues to be my favourite; reminds me of Virgilius on those Sundays I so enjoyed.

      1. Yup, Virgilius was a star. His puzzles were so consistently good. I think Jay is a worthy successor as fave.

  36. Took a while to get going tonight, maybe because I was hedge cutting most of the day…. tends to addle me a little!
    Very enjoyable puzzle with a few twists and turns.
    Many thanks to Jay & 2KWs for review & guidance

  37. Thanks to the Jay and to the 2 Kiwis for the review and hints. I was straight onto the right wavelength, and really enjoyed it. 12a made me laugh, but my favourite was 13a. Was 2*/4* for me.

  38. I’m in the “I found this a little trickier than most but only in parts” camp. I realised that 1a was an anagram but never having heard of the word I ended up Googling all the alternatives, one of them was the answer. But hey ho I got there. Favourite has to be 30a. Many thanks to Jay and 2K’s.

  39. New to this but most enjoyable except for a total brain freeze on 1d as I still don’t know what the verb is , post + I ? 😳

  40. Enjoyable, mostly because I like the smugness that comes from finishing it with just a hint or two (22a and 23d). Thanks setter and hint masters!

    I particularly enjoyed the 1a lightbulb moment. I didn’t even know I knew this word but it popped into my brain and when I checked in the dictionary there it was. I Can only imagine I’ve seen it in a previous cryptic crossword.

    Having exercised the brain I’m off to do a little belated Joe Wicks workout to exercise the body. Stay safe all wherever you may be.

  41. After a couple of weeks managing Jay’s puzzles I came unstuck this week by not getting on his wavelength at all. Needed hints and answers to finish but still am in awe at the quality of his puzzles. My thanks to the 2 Kiwis. And Jay.

  42. A most enjoyable time today – a few tricky ones, but solved completely without 2Kiwis excellent hints! Perhaps I’m improving, with all this solitude – there must be some advantage to all this. Many thanks to Jay, and the 2Kiwis, and everyone for your positivity at this somewhat trying time! 🙃

  43. I only did this excellent puzzle on Thursday morning hence my late posting. Another cracker from Jay, and congratulations to RD who spotted the J less pangram earlier on. I just wanted to add my thanks to our fabulous Wednesday setter and the 2Ks.

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