DT 29493 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29493

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29493

Hints and tips by Mr K

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BD Rating  -  Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

Hello, everyone.  Welcome to a solid Tuesday puzzle that took less time than usual to solve and to hint.  Fans of double definitions might be happy today. 

In the hints below most indicators are italicized, and underlining identifies precise definitions and cryptic definitions.  Clicking on the answer will be here 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 and a hover (computer) or long press (mobile) might explain more about the picture.  Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.



1a    Flatten target, then take a nap (8)
BULLDOZE:  The centre region of a target is followed by "take a nap" 

bulldozer airborne

5a    A rest taken on island? That's the way things are (2,2,2)
AS IT IS:  Link together A from the clue, a synonym of rest, and a two-letter abbreviation for island 

Broken "it is what it is" mug

9a    Sun playing tricks, loosens ties (8)
UNSTRAPS:  An anagram (playing) of SUN with tricks or ensnares 

10a   Groups put in care neglected, looking back (6)
GENERA:  The answer is hidden in the reversal (put in … looking back) of the remainder of the clue 

11a   Wife of Ottoman ruler, fruity thing (7)
SULTANA:  A straightforward double definition.  Both are nouns 

12a   Forced to admit article lauded (7)
PRAISED:  Forced with a crowbar containing (to admit) a grammatical article 

13a   Bending tree not hard, solid (11)
TETRAHEDRON:  An anagram (bending) of TREE NOT HARD 

crystal tetrahedron

16a   Superior  due (11)
OUTSTANDING:  Another straightforward double definition.  Both are adjectives 

21a   Hound  winger (7)
HARRIER:  And another double definition.  Both are nouns.  Winger here means something with wings 

22a   Cut around new ground (7)
GNASHED:  A synonym of cut containing (around) the abbreviation for new 

23a   Monkey rushes all over the place (6)
RHESUS:  An anagram (all over the place) of RUSHES 

24a   Mark entertains in a talk that's playful (8)
BADINAGE:  A mark or emblem contains (entertains) IN A from the clue 

25a   Buttonholed by father, the woman ran (6)
DASHED:  A pronoun for "the woman" is contained by (buttonholed by) an informal word for father 

26a   Supporter he daren't cast out (8)
ADHERENT:  An anagram (cast out) of HE DAREN'T




1d    Blemish on skin develops, we hear (6)
BRUISE:  A homophone (we hear) of develops or builds up 

2d    Disorganised, Sally saving time at the end (6)
LASTLY:  An anagram (disorganised) of SALLY containing (saving) the physics symbol for time 

3d    Temporarily quiet, party talk loudly about first of members (7)
DORMANT:  Follow a usual party with talk loudly or angrily containing the first letter of (about first of) Members

A temporarily quiet cat

4d    Flies perhaps hurry quicker round gent's middle (3,8)
ZIP FASTENER:  Hurry or rush is followed by a synonym of quicker containing (round) the middle letters of gENt.  The perhaps indicates that the definition here is by example 

6d    What's been leaked? Consult attendant (7)
SEEPAGE:  Fuse together synonyms of consult and of attendant 

7d    Love  a valuable collection (8)
TREASURE:  Another double definition, the first a verb and the second a noun 

8d    Position  on one's feet (8)
STANDING:  Double definition number five. This time the first one's a noun and the second's an adjective 

12d   Joker perhaps against wit (7-4)
PLAYING-CARD:  Follow a sporting synonym of against with a wit or eccentric person.  As in 4d, the perhaps indicates that the definition is by example 

Joker playing card

14d   Occupying berth, more troubled (8)
BOTHERED:  Inserted in (occupying) a synonym of berth is a word meaning more or spare 

15d   Naked people looking to grab cloak, finally (8)
STARKERS:  Some people who are looking intently containing (to grab) the final letter of cloaK 

17d   Leaders of British union inspired by hackneyed commendation (7)
TRIBUTE:  The first letters (leaders of) British Union are contained by (inspired by) hackneyed or banal 

18d   Garnet, I suspect, hard rock (7)
GRANITE:  An anagram (suspect) of GARNET I 

19d   Group of words becomes ragged when spoken (6)
PHRASE:  A homophone (when spoken) of a verb meaning "becomes ragged"

Ragged shorts

20d   Five accessing a hollow entrance (6)
ADVENT:  The Roman five inserted in (accessing) the concatenation of A from the clue and a hollow in a sheet of metal, for example 


Thanks to today’s setter.  The highlight for me today was the Quick pun (which probably works better over here).  Which clues did you like best?


The Quick Crossword pun:  WINDSOCK + HASSLE = WINDSOR CASTLE

82 comments on “DT 29493

  1. At first glance this one looked quite tricky but it all fell into place quite quickly. **/*** I did wonder very briefly if 13a was going to involve another tree! I liked 4d, nicely constructed. Favourite 6d. Thanks to all.

  2. What a pleasant puzzle to solve. No obscurities and a good clue mix. Two favourites for me, 4 and 12d.

    Thanks to both Misters.

  3. I found this one quite tough. The right-hand side went in eventually, but just when I thought I might need electronic help, one more penny would drop, until I got there in the end. It was a full **** time though.

    Since when has there been a two-letter abbreviation for an island? (5a)

    There is a meme going around FB today, pointing out that if the Inland Revenue says that your tax return is 16a, it doesn’t mean you calculated it correctly.

    Many thanks to the compiler and Mr.K.

  4. 2*/3*. Nothing here to frighten or excite the horses but I did enjoy the solve with 1d, 4d & 15d on my podium.

    The Quickie pun doesn’t work for me.

    Many thanks to Mr Ron and Mr K.

    1. I think you have to come from ‘up north’ for the pun to work! My wife is a Lancashire lass, so cassel it is! I’m from Wiltshire, so it’s a carrsul!

  5. No comments yet visible in Highlands – site censored by ginger whinger or restrictions imposed by ultra serious level 5?
    Unlike Mr K found this tough going well into *** time. Very enjpyable . Looking back another “handbrake on day”.
    COTDs joint 4d, probably a chestnut but brought a smile, and 12d
    Thanks to setter & Mr K

  6. Enjoyed this one very much, needed thinking about but came together nicely. Still a little 14d about 14d, spent ages trying to fit the rest of the clue around an anagram of berth. Now I see where I was going wrong but I think the word meaning more or spare is a little weak.
    Apart from that no problems.
    Thx to all

  7. Agree with Mr K that that quickie pun is 16a! When I put in 1a, it seemed so unlikely a word to form a pun with, I doubted my answer. Hats off to the setter, and thank you to Mr K for the review.

    1. Ha! I had the opposite experience. As soon as I saw 1a in the Quickie, I guessed 8a without looking at the clue.

  8. I think Mr K’s description of this as solid just about sums it up. A few too many double definitions for me, always feel these are a slight cop out by the setter and a couple per puzzle is reasonable. I did however like the homophones and they along with 24a make up my podium.
    Many thanks to the setter and to Mr K for the entertainment.

  9. A great crossword, which taxed the brain to the right level for satisfaction – well my brain, anyway. Favourites are 9a and 19d but no COTD today.

    Many thanks to the setter and to Mr K for the hints.

    I’m doing quite well with the Toughie so, if I can get somewhere with it, others who tend to shy away from it might also.

    Sitting here in darkness because the electricity is off. It’s a scheduled shutdown for maintenance so I’m having to use the hotspot on my iPhone to connect to the net. Data transfer is poor so I cannot see if Mr. K has hidden any cats. There’s a chance this comment will get lost in which case I am writing to nobody but myself! :grin:

    1. Of course MrK has found a way of making a feline inclusion even to the extent of an illustration for 3d.

    2. Going back to yesterday, I need to stand up for my husband because he does wear red, and yellow, and green trousers but not cords (they are navy)! Grey is so boring. He’s a bit of a natty dresser and very partial to a bow tie, mind you , when he’s gardening you wouldn’t want to know him. The clue about Chelsea Tractors stirred up a bit of a hornet’s next didn’t it?

      1. A man is not partial to a bow tie, Daisygirl – he has a penchant for one! 😎

        I sincerely hope the hospital appointment is still on. 👍

  10. I liked the Quickie pun but the puzzle had, I thought, some very iffy clues.
    This puzzle was straightforward and unexceptional.
    Now I’m waiting to see how I did with the Toughie. What a way to spend a morning!

  11. Pleasant puzzle, with an amusing quickie pun (which works for me over here). We simply call 4d a ‘zipper’, which saves time but may not be as descriptive, nor is the term ‘flies’ used in quite that way; it’s always singular–and pardon me for the cultural bog I just waded in. I liked 6d, 8d, and 24a. Thanks to Mr K and today’s setter. ** / ***

    Just finished the Toughie!

    1. Quickie pun works for me too.
      Obviously the education of the colonies as to the idiosyncracies of our language is simply work in progress Robert.

        1. DG
          Not really, Robert, I imagine as a Southern Gentleman in the truest sense. Wouldn’t be surprised if he appreciated Tom Lehrer, he is about of the right age!
          As far as I am concerned I take each day as it comes, thank you.

          1. I learned the joy of satire and self-effacing wit from Tom Lehrer, actually, quite early in my life (say, age 18 or so at Clemson University), early enough at least to love the ‘pigeons in the park’ and to ‘Be Prepared’ as ‘through life I march along’! Don’t worry, Daisygirl: LROK and I (a slightly tainted Southern Gentleman perhaps) are good buddies, and I know when his tongue is in his cheek. Usually.

            1. Robert
              Keep trying to remember Lehrer lyrics lfrom Lobechevsky, “plagiarise” in math[s] ” but please call it research”), the Irish Ballad, Clementine, Masochism Tango etc.
              I had the tongue into cheek fusion performed years ago.
              Enjoy the mint julep or is it too late in the year now?

              1. Who can forget his The elements
                lots of people have filled in the gaps that followed his closing couplet;

                These are the only ones of which the news has come to Harvard,
                And there may be many others but they haven’t been discarvered.

                There are a ton of youtube links if you want to find Tom Lehrer songs but you have probably got it from Agnes already !

                1. John
                  Like it, have CDs etc but my favourite TL quote is not from a song but from his intro to We’ll all Go Together. ” Life is like a sewer, what you get out of it depends on what you put into it”.

  12. I agree with most of you, a very pleasant exercise. When I saw the Z at 1a I went on pangram alert but it was not to be. What, Mr K, did you do to that poor cat at 3d? Did it have a night on the tiles? Despite the fact that it is Tuesday I had a smile on my face when I entered the last clue, which was 14d. Many thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  13. Like Brian 14d had me scratching my head over the parsing. 22a was my favourite. Thanks all.

  14. Mr K’s comment of ‘solid’ just about covers it – nothing here that really stood out for me.
    Can’t win ’em all!

    Thanks to our setter and to Mr K for the review – the ragged wallpaper made me smile.

  15. This was a gentle workout which, bearing 1a in mind, I expected would turn out to be a proXimal pangram but no. North was effortless but South required a bit more application. I would never have thought of the mark synonym in 24a but the whole was an obvious bung-in. My Fav was 4d. Quickie pun is clever but, as has been said, wont work for everyone. Thank you Mysteron and MrK.

  16. Quite enjoyable but not as much fun as yesterday. Some I was not sure about as I went along. Hastily inserted steward at 6d despite the fact that it does not parse. Did not correct until I worked out how to spell 13a. All the checkers in 24a were vowels which made it difficult especially as mark could have several meanings and could be a proper name. I did not link the last 3 words together at first for the definition. It is a good word though which I was trying to make fit a crossword clue recently. SW was last corner in. Thank you setter and Mr K. Hints not needed but like to check the parsing and read all the comments.

  17. As with general comments so far a good puzzle with no clue being in the “stinker” category. **/***
    Reading yesterday’s comments I noticed Burnham Market cropped up not always in a good light 😂 so to bring back some balance it is certainly not a “ghastly village” as described . Obviously like many places it has changed over the years (certainly busier) and has got (in some quarters) the questionable tag of Chelsea on Sea. It does attract many visitors from London of course. Obviously I am a little bit biased as I live nearby in a village that still has a community and mixes happily with people who move here for whatever reason keeping it and the economy alive.
    Maybe you just went there on a bad day and everyone of course is entitled to their opinion…hopefully if you visit the area again you will come away with a more positive experience.
    Think it all started with a clue about Chelsea Tractors 😂 leading on to a more varied thread but which makes this blog a bit more interesting so no problem with that.

    1. I was the one who mentioned ‘Chelsea on Sea’ but didn’t mean any offence – the shops are wonderful, a super hat shop where bought a hat for Henley one year. Also my favourite garden ornament, a stone cherub which we have placed on an old tree stump, came form there and is greatly admired so I do have pleasant memories! I’d be delighted to go back tomorrow – if only I could !!!

      1. No offence was taken!! Just balancing some of the other contributors points – not yours. Always enjoy reading your comments.
        Kind and Warm Regards

        1. SRS, I completely apologise for my remark yesterday – reliving the experience with The Hoste overcharging by some two hundred quid got me all hot and bothered again and the fact that a London chap in an Aston Martin blocked me in for 4 hours and thought it frightfully funny. Not the fault of B Market at all so I am eating a huge helping of Humble Pie. I also love the hat shop!

          1. Absolutely no need – just balancing the books! The common bond on here is the enthusiasm that you all have for crosswords which is fantastic.
            I actually sympathise with your story – you will always get that type of selfish person and being overcharged with no apology is incredibly frustrating. Normally The Hoste is good – I think it has different owners now from the original family.
            I do see both sides as even though family roots go a long way back in Norfolk I have spent about 40 years living in London – these days a bit between the two.
            By the way I think A Holden has left for the Cotswolds now😂
            Have a good evening and stay safe

  18. SW corner held me up for a time but got there in just **. 1a and 4d my favourites. Thanks for the blog Mr K and the great hidden pictures. Thanks also to the setter for a puzzle with enough difficulty to make me think very hard but also not too difficult to solve it.

    A very good Tuesday with a successful visit to the audiology clinic for new hearing aids and to do various other jobs before the puzzle.

    1. Hi Corky. I started Middleton’s Holiday last night (between trips to the Toughie) and am enjoying it very much–nicely, smoothly styled; engaging protagonist–so far.

      1. My copy’s due to arrive tomorrow but it will have to wait a while as I’m currently trying to build a cathedral in Pillars of the Earth and it’s quite a tome! I did thoroughly enjoy (and occasionally cry over) Where the Crawdads Sing – thank you to all for the recommendation.

        1. Hi Jane. I have yet to indulge myself with those Ken Follett epics, but I read him aeons ago with The Eye of the Needle and other thrillers like that. But now, I’m considering Pillars…. Glad you enjoyed Crawdads. Nothing else like it in my experience.

          1. Coincidentally I have just started reading Ken Follett’s Winter of the World. It had been in my “to read” pile for some months but because of its daunting size I had always chosen something else. Now I’ve started it, I’m hooked.

            1. I loved his Century trilogy about the intertwined lives of various families during the WW1 and WW2.

                1. For as long as I have my sight and dexterity, I won’t give up the enjoyment of reading a ‘real’ book and turning the pages. However, I’m sure something like Audible will be a godsend if and when I lose those abilities.

                  1. My sight is not so good, audible and Kindle are blessings. It’s still a little awkward reading like I used to, scanning lines rather than reading individual words.

        2. I too would like to say thanks for alerting me to ‘Where the Crawdads sing.’ We once had a great holiday on the North Carolina Outer banks. So after those comments last week I went straight to our wonderful little bookshop here in Woodstock (England) and they had it in stock. I shall finish it tonight, but I don’t want it to end! I whizzed in with most answers for today’s crossword, but was stumped by the south west corner due to my initial wrong answers. Thank you for putting me right Mr K.

  19. Found this one pleasant enough with no real difficulty though it was by no means a speedy solve. NW was the last to yield & once 4d went in 1a&d soon followed & these 3 would be my podium picks.
    Thanks to the setter & Mr K

  20. I found this one trickier than most others seem to have, but got there in the end. A lot of nice clues, though.
    Needed help with parsing 14d, so no hurrah today.

    Thanks to Mr K and to the setter

  21. Well knock me down with a feather. It’s a real Tuesday. I actually filed my comment early today but must have forgotten to press post. I wondered what Mr K had done to the cat at 3D, he looks as if he’s had a night on the tiles. When I saw 1a I was immediately on pangram alert, but it was not to be. A very pleasant work out on yet another wet day. Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

      1. That’s the first thing I thought of, Jane, when Daisy told us she had a date with the orthopaedist!

  22. This one was a mixture of rather straightforward clues and some, particularly on the right, which were much more obscure. I agree with Stephen Lord that it was heavy on the double definitions. I found some of the clues a bit clumsy and frustrating so not very enjoyable and rather time-consuming (3*/2*). 13a, however, was a corker. Thanks to Mr K and the compiler.

  23. Around a **/*** for me, and like Ora I too liked a lot of the clues, nothing too abstract.
    Liked the surface of 1a and 11a and 4d for originality, the more synonym in 14d was new to me and was authenticated as usual in Chambers.
    No sitting on the fence with the Quickie pun, I liked it.
    Thanks to Mr K for the pics as usual.

  24. Another cracking puzzle today with lots of good clues. I too found the quickie pun a bit far fetched. Thanks to all. Have got a few on the Toughie but not many.

  25. This was reasonably straightforward until it wasn’t. For me the difficulties were in the SE. 24a just wouldn’t come and when it did I ended up with an earworm of Kenneth Williams singing Ma Crepe Suzette

    Badinage – All night Garage – Jeux Sans Frontieres – Ma Crepe Suzette
    I have put up a link to him singing it on Parky before but suspect all the Round the Horne fans from the other day know it only too well

    Thanks to Mr K and setter
    I will head off to the toughie but Mama Bee has declared it is time to put the heating on and it is stuffy and not conducive to brain work.

    1. “Ma Crepe Suzette” is brilliant. Further to “Round the Horne” and “The Navy Lark” etc, Mrs C and I used to take a holiday cottage in the Cotswolds. It was owned by John Simmonds who was the head of comedy at the BBC in the 60’s and he produced the shows. He could not stand Kenneth Williams but he told us that Kenneth Horne was a true gentleman.

      1. Kenneth Williams was a very troubled soul – I have read the Hunter Davies collection of his diaries and his letters. They are well worth a read but I can well believe some of his foibles made him a pretty unlikeable character. Nevertheless I used to laugh my self silly at his Round the Horne stuff, lass so in the carry ons these days as they are quite dated and not terribly PC these days

        1. I used to love reading Hunter Davis in dear old Punch. I Do miss that, imagine the fun they would all be having right now!

  26. I really started off on the wrong foot – no wave length at all – is that called mixing my metaphors or just talking drivel?!
    After a little while I realised that I was just making difficulties where there weren’t any and then it went quite well.
    The bottom left corner remained stubbornly empty for quite a while – no reason – just did.
    My favourite was 24a because it reminded me of Wogan.
    Thanks to whoever set this one and to Mr K.

    1. It’s the wearing of the masks , they not only cloud up my reading glasses but they cloud up my brain and make hearing difficult.

      1. You wear a mask while solving the crossword, Una? Is that not taking it to extreme? 🤣🤣🤣🤣

  27. Like Kath, I found this a little tricky. In fairness, I’m having trouble concentrating, I’m getting older, can’t think of any other reason.
    With copious e-help, I did finish but had the wrong answer in 19d, a bung in. I can’t spell, the anagram at 26a was so obvious, I just wrote it in without checking the letters. I should know better.
    Thanks to our setter and to Mr. K for sorting me out and the always welcome kitty pics.

    1. Don’t worry, Merusa. I find I get nowhere with the crossword first thing in the morning until I have had my coffee. Even then, clues don’t start to reveal their secrets until mid morning. It may be because we’re getting older but, since I retired recently, I like to look upon it as my brain has more time now to ponder the conundrums.

      Until either Mrs. C or Hudson make demands.

  28. I too found very much on the trickier side . I did about half at work ( don’t tell anyone) and finished it just now at home where it fell into place quickly enough.
    Very pleasant , so thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  29. I’m with Kath and Merusa, who are just above me here. Rather tricky – I came back to the puzzle several times and needed Mr K’s hints for a few in the end.
    A rather grey, drizzly, slow, sleepy, day in Surrey. I quite enjoy such days…

    Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  30. Found this puzzle somewhat frustrating due to some awkward and obscure clues. Definitely not on this setters wavelength. For me this was ****/** Many hints needed and even when the answer was in, I found the parsing seemed iffy in many of them.
    Not for me this one. No sense of joy in finishing it after leaving it and then coming back to it several times.
    No favourites today.

    Thanks to setter and Mr K for the hints

  31. Easiest (or at least quickest) for a while for me, despite what I thought were some pretty stretched synonyms…..anyway, I enjoyed it…

  32. A good fun puzzle for us with the Quickie pun taking top spot on our podium.
    Thanks Mr Ron and Mr K.

  33. Thanks to the setter and to Mr Kitty for the review and hints. A very nice puzzle, good fun. Just needed the hints for the definition of 24a, and to parse 14d. Lots of humour, liked 1,13,22a and 14d, but my favourite was 4d. Was 2* / 4* for me.

  34. A crossword of two halves for me, the east being straightforward and being completed in the time between arriving back home and dashing off to play darts. The west probably made more difficult by the combination of fatigue and too much beer before nodding off and waking up at silly o’clock to complete it. Favourite was 13a. Thanks to the setter and Mr. K.

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