DT 29433 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29433

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29433

Hints and tips by Mr K

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BD Rating  -  Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

Hello, everyone.  Bit of a general knowledge fest today.  Most of the answers were obvious from wordplay and checkers, but after the grid was filled I had to verify a few in the BRB.  Not really my idea of fun, but my opinion of this puzzle did go up as I wrote the hints.  There are some excellent clues here. 

In the hints below most indicators are italicized, and underlining identifies precise definitions and cryptic definitions.  Clicking on the answer buttons will reveal the answers.  In some hints hyperlinks provide additional explanation or background.  Clicking on a picture will enlarge it or display a bonus illustration.  Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.



1a    Concentrate again: prepare for next shot? (7)
REFOCUS:  The answer could also describe something done to a camera to ensure that the next shot is sharp 

5a    Intimidate to restrict runs and hinder opener (7)
CROWBAR:  A synonym of intimidate containing (to restrict) the cricket abbreviation for runs is followed by hinder or block 

9a    Pole tires alongside Welsh runner (9)
FLAGSTAFF:  Tires or fades is followed by (alongside) a river in Wales (since rivers run, in crosswordland a runner can be a river.  As can a flower, because rivers also flow) 

10a   Opinion given one way or another (5)
TENET:  We're looking for a word defined by opinion that's also a palindrome (since it's the same given one way or another

11a   Sauce unfortunately knocked over covers son (5)
SALSA:  The reversal (knocked over) of an interjection meaning unfortunately contains (covers) the genealogical abbreviation for son 

12a   Limit supply of beer in grounds (9)
RATIONALE:  A verb meaning "limit supply of" is followed by a kind of beer 

13a   One cleans material turning round less (9)
LAUNDERER:  The reversal (turning) of material or actual is wrapped round a synonym of less 

16a   Wide, but no main thoroughfare? (5)
BROAD:  The answer split (1, 4) is something that's not a main thoroughfare 

17a   Doctor meeting a graduate in exciting situation (5)
DRAMA:  Concatenate a usual doctor, A from a the clue, and a usual graduate 

18a   Passing rains ripped into canvas shelter (9)
TRANSIENT:  An anagram (ripped) of RAINS is inserted in a canvas shelter 

20a   Penny had meal aboard river vessel (9)
PRIVATEER:  The single letter for penny is followed by "had meal" inserted in (aboard) RIVER from the clue 

23a   Good to occupy one privy in packed house (5)
IGLOO:  The single letter for good is placed between (to occupy) the Roman one and an informal word for privy.  The definition here is cryptic

25a   Old number three fouled (5)
ETHER:  An anagram (fouled) of three.  Number here means, cryptically, something that induces numbness

26a   Animal spotted at Crufts? (9)
DALMATIAN:  Crufts is a dog show, so the clue is a cryptic reference to a type of dog whose coat is spotted 

27a   Weapon not used at the front? (7)
SIDEARM:  Our setter does like a cryptic definition.  The name of this weapon suggests that it's intended for use somewhere other than the front (or the back) 

28a   Untidy person seen with east European (7)
SLOVENE:  An uncommon word for an untidy person is followed by the single letter for east 



1d    Revised FA rules getting thumbs-down (7)
REFUSAL:  An anagram (revised) of FA RULES 

2d    Delicate father to sicken (5)
FRAIL:  Follow the abbreviation for a religious father with a synonym of sicken 

3d    Treated as canards -- her prophecies were! (9)
CASSANDRA:  An anagram (treated) of AS CANARDS.  The definition references the rest of the clue, with the whole thing describing the plight of a mythical Greek priestess 

4d    Right to support celebrity skin-basher (5)
STARR:  The single letter for right comes after (to support, in a down clue) another word for a celebrity.  This skin-basher turned 80 a few weeks ago 

5d    Copyright song entertaining fund-raiser for restaurant (9)
CAFETERIA:  Follow the single letter for copyright with a type of operatic song containing (entertaining) an outdoor fund-raising event 

6d    Better from United in goalless game? (5)
OUTDO:  An abbreviation for united is inserted in a pair of letters that look like the score in a goalless game 

7d    Shuffle along in exposed Indian city (9)
BANGALORE:  An anagram (shuffle) of ALONG is inserted in exposed or naked 

8d    Radical claims to be in Paris or Tyre (7)
RETREAD:  An informal contraction of radical contains (claims) the French verb "to be" (to be in Paris).  The false capitalisation of Tyre is just misdirection.  Several reports of Lewis Hamilton's win at Silverstone on Sunday after getting a puncture on the final lap described him as "limping home".  I just read that he was actually still hitting over 140mph on the three good tyres and this one.  Remarkable.

14d   Universal god is deceived in sacred Hindu text (9)
UPANISHAD:  Link together the single letter for universal, a pipe-playing god, IS from the clue, and another word for deceived.  Read about the sacred text here 

15d   City scoundrel US lawyer married (9)
ROTTERDAM:  Assemble a scoundrel or cad, the abbreviation for a US lawyer who prosecutes for government, and the genealogical abbreviation for married 

16d   Abstain when whipped? Party gives punishment! (9)
BASTINADO:  An anagram (… when whipped) of ABSTAIN is followed by a usual party 

17d   Bring down news boss elevated by media (7)
DEPRESS:  The reversal (elevated) of a usual news boss is followed by another word for the media 

19d   Thrash tiger disheartened by smaller cat (7)
TROUNCE:  The outer letters (disheartened) of TigeR are followed by another name for the snow leopard, a cat that is indeed smaller than a tiger 

21d   Trunk route going north via Longleat Road (5)
AORTA:  The answer is hidden reversed (going north via, in a down clue) the remainder of the clue 

22d   Posh car  turns over (5)
ROLLS:  The informal name for a brand of luxury car is also a verb meaning turns over. The car helpfully includes a cat chin rest

24d   Get wisdom about current in French river (5)
LOIRE:  Some special or traditional wisdom contains (get wisdom about …) the physics symbol for electric current 


Happy Birthday Jane!  Thanks to today’s setter.  I thought 12a, 18a, and 6d were rather good.  Which clues did you like best?



79 comments on “DT 29433

  1. Not difficult but nobody will be surprised that 14d angered me considerably. Bad enough to suffer religious clues but to insert obscure Hindu gods is OTT. Very disappointing.
    Thx for the hints

    1. Pan is not a Hindu god. Using religious clues is not an attempt to turn you into something you do not want to be. I am not thrilled with cricket clues but would never say they anger me considerably. I had never heard of the Hindu TEXT but it was so easy to build up from the clue after which I checked on Google and learned something new. We are never too old to learn.

  2. This puzzle was very different in style to most of the ones on the back page. There were quite a few realky straightforward clus and a fair number of really wily ones. I don’t mind GK clues but there were a good few and it took me a while to figure out 4d as I was unfamiliar with the term skin-basher! Altogether it was a rather enjoyable solve. I’d rate it 3 */4* and the clues that appealed to me most were 3d, 14d, 5a and 23a. Thanks to Mr K (liked the cats) and the setter.

  3. I thought that this was excellent and a bit out of the ordinary with some great clues and smooth surfaces. I particularly liked 23a, 26a, 3d and 6d. The Quickie pun is also nicely groan-worthy.
    Thanks to our setter and Mr K for the review.

    The Toughie by Silvanus is also first-rate and highly recommended so it’s a great puzzling day all round.

    Happy Birthday to Jane.

  4. Got all the GK answers easily and I enjoyed the brief visit to India and elsewhere; it was the short, tricky ones–like 6d and 10a–that foxed me. Still, some crackerjack clueing, with my favourites being 5a, 8d, and 23a. Overall, a bit tougher than the usual Tuesday fare, I thought. Thanks to Mr Kitty for the usual enjoyable illustrations and to today’s setter. 3* / 3.5*

    Indian religious texts are not obscure to those millions who believe in them.

    1. Robert,
      Hope Isias was not too damaging.
      Agreed 14d would be known to millions of Hindus. However only about 1.5% of the UK population is Hindu. On that basis it would be safe to assume that about 80% of solvers would have had to consult Mr G. so would not have been able to solve the puzzle unaided.

      1. We fared much better during the storm than did our neighbours to the north and those now being pummeled. You’re so right about 14d, LRok, my love of Eastern religions notwithstanding. I am duly humbled.

        1. Glad you fared well with Isaias, as we did. My friends in NC didn’t do as well. Please oh please, let there be no more storms this summer! Is that too much to ask?

  5. Well, there were a few tricky clues today but I enjoyed the solve and overall a **/*** as per Mr K.
    Unlike Brian, my favourite had to be the wonderful charade for 14d, a completely new word for me and for others I suspect.
    As for 4d, I was unfamiliar with this term but eventually the penny dropped and the D’oh moment had arrived- as John said he wasn’t even the best drummer in the Beatles!
    Cracking quickie pun-after looking up our Natty.
    Many thanks to Mr K and setter.


  6. I agree with Chriscross. A lot of the clues were wily (good word).
    In the end I needed no help, but there were quite a few proper names, some of which (14d, 16d) were in what I would call my passive vocabulary and not noticed for some time, but did fit once the checkers were in place.

    Thanks to Mr K for the explanation of 16a. I had it in without getting the clever parsing.
    I’m giving it an extra half star – 2.5*, because it took a bit longer and was, well, a bit weird.
    My favourite was 4d…..I knew about skins, but not ‘basher”. I don’t think anyone uses his surname nowadays, which isn’t real anyway..

  7. 2*/3*. This was not difficult and enjoyable on the whole but 14d & 16d seemed a bit incongruous to me.

    6d was my favourite.

    Many thanks to the setter and to Mr K, and a very Happy Birthday to Jane.

  8. Not my cup of tea at all. I will never accept that obscure foreign words or bits of GK have a place in English crosswords.

    1. You would have hated crosswords from days of yore by legends like Ximenes and Torquemada then.

      They would have laughed in the face of the obscure knowledge (general is the wrong word for it) that appears in the current ones.

  9. Some very complicated clues. 14d took some unraveling and I did have to check the answer with Mr. G being unfamiliar with religions from the sub continent ( and anywhere else for that matter). 16d had to be what it is but, again, I hadn’t come across the word. 8d was maddenly complicated and I needed the explanation for that from Mr. K. A ***/** for me today. Favourite 5d. Thanks to all.

  10. Enjoyable overall, but have to agree with MalcolmR to some extent
    Thanks to setter and Mr K
    Happy Birthday Jane

  11. This just wasn’t my bag at all and in fact I found some of the clues rather silly. North beat South where I needed a bit of prompting. Don’t think I have heard of 16d. Pun only just works but it is amusing anyway. Thank you Mysteron and MrK.

  12. Not a great fan of general knowledge in crosswords so to me this was tainted somewhat by a couple of obscurities. I do accept there were a plethora of good (if not very contempory) clues however, and I liked 16&18a plus 4& 6d in particular
    Many thanks to the setter and to Mr K….and a very happy birthday to Jane .

  13. Agree 14d was perhaps a step too far. I had every alternate letter so luckily it was in my electronic online dictionary. I must add “skinbasher” to my useful book of synonyms. 16a is my favourite way to travel while 26a, is probably a chestnut but I like it.
    The Quickie pun was good once one had looked up Natty Bumppo – what a terrible name.
    The Toughie is doable. Try it!

  14. Rose loved this as it happened to tick all her GK boxes: Gray was less keen but appreciated the cleverness of the clues. Neither of us had ever heard of 16d, have since looked it up, sounds gruesome. Apparently it occurs in As You Like It, so accessible to those who paid more attention to their Shakespeare! Religious knowledge frequently provides cultural enrichment and encourages tolerance and understanding of others, whether or not one feels it reflects observable reality. Let’ s not exclude it! 🙂 Thanks to setter and Mr K.

  15. Straightforward? Not difficult? I obviously haven’t had the right breakfast cereal. I have no hesitation giving this one 4*/4*. One of the best in a long time. Thank you Mysteron & Mr K.

  16. Malcolm and I must like the same tea.
    A DNF for me today.
    There were some very good clues that were offset by too many that just didn’t grab me for the puzzle to be enjoyable overall.
    Thanks to the setter and Mr K for the excellent hints which were needed for the NE corner (8d’s use of an “informal contraction” was lost on me and I was fooled by the excellent 5a).

  17. A pick up and put down day with this one. Some very obscure clues and I had never heard of 14d and 16d. 8d was way too complicated for me. All in all, not a pleasant solve and it gave little satisfaction.

    Thank you to the setter but it was way above my capabilities. Many thanks to Mr. K. for the hints and cats.

    Happy Birthday, Jane.

  18. Just about right for a Tuesday puzzle, although I did need some electronic assistance for 14d, for completion at a gallop – **/****.
    I did know 16d, I presume from previous crosswords because I can’t think of any other way that I would be aware of it.
    Candidates for favourite – 1a, 12a, 5d, and 19d – and the winner is 12a.
    Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  19. Struggled with this one but eventually made it to the finish line unaided other than needing Mr G to confirm answers for 4,14&16d all of which were new to me. Can’t quite decide whether I enjoyed it or not but that’s probably because I made hard work of some of the easier ones. Anyway I’ll plump for a podium of 5 letter answers – 6d, 23a & the reverse lurker at 21d, which of course took me a while to spot.
    Thanks to the setter & to Mr K for the review

  20. Firstly, many thanks to BD for the birthday banner and also to everyone for their good wishes. Spent a lovely morning opening cards & emails, chatting to friends on the phone and arranging a bouquet of flowers from No.2 daughter, so was hoping for an easy ride with today’s back-pager – not to be! Quite happy to admit to needing to check on 14&16d and some of the others took quite a bit of pondering.
    No particular favourite to mention although I thought the Quickie pun was clever – guessed it from the first and last word but had to look up the guy with the unfortunate name to nail what had to come between them.

    Thanks to our setter and also to Mr K for the review and feline frolics. Loved the illustration for 13a – must get some of those tags for my girls…….
    PS Excellent Toughie from our own Silvanus today – a birthday present for me of course!

    1. Happy Birthday, Jane! I’ve certainly enjoyed and appreciated our ‘literary’ chats this year, and I hope you have many happy returns of the day, with good reading ahead for you.

    2. Happy Birthday Jane: a bit late in the day but I hope you have a lovely evening, whatever you’re doing.

  21. Struggled through three quarters of this before losing the will to live and resorting to the hints. Thankfully, perhaps, I’ve never heard of 16d or 28a. Many thanks to Mr. K for much needed hints and to the setter.
    I’d just add that I know nothing about cricket, football or much science but that’s down to my shortcomings that certainly don’t evoke anger. Everyone has different interests and it’s good that these can be accommodated by our setters so that we’re provided with opportunities to extend knowledge.

  22. I cannot say that I was conversant with 14d but once checkers were in place it was obvious enough to look up and I love having all the reference books out. I was bound to have heard some mention of it in India as we were told a very great deal about Hinduism! I liked 20a and 7d, was convinced at first that 13a was Launderer but could not justify the a. Thanks Mr K. What fun. Top RH corner was last in. I went shopping today – to Biggleswade retail park rather than Cambridge – I felt quite daring but now I am wondering how many loose germs were floating about despite the mask wearing. Lots of hand sanitisers and everyone being considerate but it is a lottery – I don’t want to repeat the experience for a long time.

  23. No trouble with 14d, but I had never heard of skin-basher before, and I needed to google check that my answer to 3d was correct.
    2*/4* for me. Thanks to setter and to Mr K.

    Happy Birthday Jane.

  24. This to me was a challenge and I agree with Brian at #1 regarding 14 down it seemed to me to be a different crossword at times, I thank the Setter & Mr K.

  25. :phew: I found that difficult, enjoyable (I think) but jolly tricky and the style felt unfamiliar.
    My last two were 5a and 8d and I couldn’t do one until I did the other.
    I had heard of the punishment at 16d, probably from a crossword, but not heard of 14d.
    4d was a bit of a mystery for a long time but eventually I got the ‘skin-basher’ bit of it.
    I did 6d because nothing else would work but still don’t really ‘get’ it.
    I could go on at length but maybe not . . .
    Clues that stood out for me included 5 and 23a and 7 and 8d.
    Thanks to whoever set this one and to Mr K.

  26. ***/***. Most of this went in smoothly but got held up by the NE which in retrospect can’t see why. Like many others 14&16d needed Googling. 6d was my favourite. Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  27. Did most of this very quickly then got stumped on the last few. Couldn’t work out why 4d was the answer until I read the hints. A pretty obscure definition in my opinion. I agree with other comments that 14d is a bit much in a non Toughie.

  28. A tricky Tuesday, I thought. Needed quite a bit of e-help. 14d was slightly familiar, but 16d was definitely not. So some knowledge gained; I think it a bit of GK is warranted. 5a totally defeated me. 4d seemed obvious, but it took me some time to figure out why as I couldn’t think why there would be such a word. ‘Skin-basher’ doesn’t seem the right term for someone with such talent. 13a was a struggle; convinced it was an anagram but couldn’t fit the ‘o’, then got the right word without understanding why. For some reason the simple 12a took me some time to work out. That was a favourite, along with 23a and 7d. Thanks to setter and Mr K.

  29. OK but a bit obscure in places. 6d and 25a were my favourites. Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  30. I’m a buffoon.
    They are not lilies. I used the ‘plantsnap’ app, and also sent a photo by email to one of my more horticulturally minded friends. Both confirmed they are irises and not lilies. I am very sorry for giving cat lovers here the heebie-jeebies. I further checked whether irises are harmful to cats and Google says they are not unless the cat digs up and eats the bulbs. Lola has assured me she has no intentions of doing so.
    Late again today due to a supermarket trip and then associated disinfecting (will we ever stop doing this?).
    I thought this crossword was peculiar, and like Steve Cowling way up above, 14d and 16d were an education to me. I needed further help with a couple of others. This puzzle was a little out of my reach.
    Thanks to the setter and the celebrated Mr K.

    1. So pleased that you’ve got the ‘potential lilies’ question out of the way but I fear that we won’t be seeing the end of the disinfecting any time soon. This ‘new normal’ is really depressing although I still count myself lucky that I didn’t have to face the traumatic times associated with the two ‘world wars’. There was certainly still food rationing when I was a youngster but I was of course in blissful ignorance that life had ever been any different. Actually, it was quite a few years before I could stand the taste of butter – margarine tasted so much better to me!

      1. Thanks Jane – and Happy Birthday!
        I wasn’t around for rationing, however butter is becoming a distant memory for me as I have ‘gone vegan’ this year; luckily there are more and more tasty substitutes appearing on the shelves.

        1. I’m slowly getting there. I stopped mammals about four years ago, and now I’m phasing out birds. I seldom use butter but I don’t think I’ll ever get rid of eggs. I’m horrified at what I read about calves on dairy farms.

      2. I was five years old when the Second World War started and remember things vividly. And we have a daily reminder here with spitfires flying over our village from the imperial war museum at Duxford! Lovely sound!

        1. If I remember correctly, the phrase then got borrowed and became ‘I can’t tell talk from mutter’.

          1. Whatever you do don’t give up butter. Margarine is plastic, or as close as you can get to it. Butter has a constituent that actually lowers cholesterol.

            1. Taylor – I gave butter and milk up for ethical reasons. I now have oat milk, and plant based spread which is fine with me!
              I haven’t had margarine since prep school lunches (which were vile).

  31. ***/** for today. Bottom half was slow along with obscure the 14d and 16d that I have never heard of and slowed the whole process down.. Clues worthy of mention for today are 12a, 16a, 23a, 4d & 6d … winner 12a

    Thanks to setter and Mr K

  32. 1a sums up my attempts at solving this puzzle. I did finish in the end but never felt as though I got into the swing of things. I encountered 16d in recent times while looking for the answer to an anagram and knew the first 4 letters of 14d but had to look for the rest! I fell for the misdirection in 25a and twigged the meaning of “skin basher” in 4d only after some considerable time. My favourite is 6d. The “informal contraction” of radical to rad in 8d seems unconvincing – I’ve only ever come across “rad” as an abbreviation for a radiator. Thanks to the compiler, and to Mr K: I like the cat pictures in particular.

  33. Not really my idea of fun either. I agree with Mr K on that. I put smiley faces by clues I like, and glum 🙁 ones by those I don’t. The glums won today. Perhaps the chlorine from the pool has gone to my brain. Off to the jigsaw to cheer myself up. Thanks to Mr K, the picture at 22d was the best thing for me.

  34. Late to this, After a week off I am not back into the working patterns yet and was just about dropping off when the alarm rang this am. but the puzzle was great for me. 16d was known to me (probably seen here before?) 14d was not. I did construct (almost) the right answer as the clue told me but no time to google hindu religious tracts meant that it was LOI. It was a bit of a geography lesson today from Arizona to the Balkans via India,France and the Netherlands. I forget where 26a is (Is it in the Balkans too?)
    Thanks to setter and Mr K for his entertaining blog and of course my Best wishes to Jane for her birthday.

  35. Happy, happy birthday Jane!
    We had some thunder this morning and my sitting room ceiling fell down! Not a good start to the day, so I’m late.
    Not an easy crossword, I had to use copious amounts of e-help. Lots of gimmes helped to give me checking letters. I did need to visit hints to get back on track at one point. This one really beat me, needed help with far too many.
    Fave was 15d.
    Thanks to our setter for the puzzle and to Mr. K for helping me solve.

    1. I’m sure you needed rather more than e-help to deal with the sitting room ceiling, Merusa! Hope you’ve managed to cope with it OK?
      Thank you for the birthday wishes – masses of cards, emails and phone calls which compensated for not being able to have a lunch out with friends. Bonus is that I can drink as much as I like today without worrying about having to drive home!

      1. A friend was here and put all the debris in a corner, leaving a path to the front door. I’m going to pretend it didn’t happen, I live in the sitooterie anyway, at the back of the house. A cat, Amalia, started the demolishing by pulling on a wire to the fan, the tiles came away from the ceiling but stuck up there, some thunder this morning finished the job for Amalia. I lead an exciting life.

          1. So far! I got a spray and I get my helper to spray around the property. We’ve had so much rain the last few days, I haven’t been able to get out there to check it, far too slippery for this old lady!

  36. Not often a Tuesday Crossword hits the back of the bin so hard. Sorry to those who disagree I found no enjoyment and few redeeming features!!

  37. A bit quirky in places but all solved as checkers helped the job along. Very enjoyable over a couple of cups of tea many hours ago this morning. Thanks to the setter for the fun and thanks to Mr Kitty for explaining the tyre clue. Happy birthday to Jane and to anybody else with a birthday today.

  38. A bit of a west/east divide for me today. West was relatively straightforward but east was jolly hard work. Eventually finished and I’m not sure I enjoyed it that much. And the pun in the quickie….never heard of Natty Bumppo, so had to look it up. Not the best ever day crosswording! Thanks to Mr K for the hints, which I needed!

  39. Not doubt on my own in thinking this was not a ** today.

    14d was pretty obscure to anyone not Hindu. Never heard of skin-basher and neither has the internet it would seem. 16d is a new term for me.

    *****/* for me today.

    Nevertheless, thanks to the setter (most seemed to enjoy this crossword) and Mr K for putting me out of my misery.

  40. Happy Birthday Jane.
    We did know all the GK required here so no hold-ups with those clues. 13a was the one that took us longer than it should have.
    Enjoyable solve.
    Thanks Mr Ron and Mr K.

    1. Many thanks, 2Ks, and indeed to everyone who’s popped in this afternoon/evening to leave their best wishes. Still a bit of wine left so my private party for one can continue until bedtime! Hope tomorrow’s Jay isn’t one of his tougher numbers!

  41. Don’t get reference to skin-basher in 4d and 14d incomprehensible to me. Seems to need some very niche knowledge. Otherwise enjoyable.

  42. Late home, late to start, tired and never got to play darts so that didn’t put me in the best frame of mind. However things went swimmingly until the moment they didn’t. I’m not sure what to say about 14d, I’ve not heard of half of the religious words in our own religions let alone foreign ones. NE last to go in, but I got there eventually. Had to Google 16d and 26a but Googled the right words. Favourite was 1a where I was on the wrong “shot” altogether. Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  43. That was difficult even with the hints I’m not even sure I would call it cryptic!

  44. I enjoyed this immensely. Only managed it this morning as went out (yes out!) for a meal and shopping in Nottingham yesterday for the first time. The meal was absolutely delicious and to top it all it had the government subsidy. I did not know all the general knowledge but the clueing was so skilful that you could get the answer without looking up. Yes, I looked up – but afterwards to check and learn something new. 4d puzzled me more than the obscure words as the answer was easy from the word-play but I did not know what skin-basher and for some reason could only think about peeling potatoes. I first thought of laundress for 13a taking less from the clue but then not finding anything to fit the middle. The penny eventually dropped. 8d took me a while. On looking back I think this is a masterful piece of work and would disagree with anyone who says otherwise. Thank you Setter and Mr K for enlightening me about skin-bashed.

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