DT 29547 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29547

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29547

Hints and tips by Mr K

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BD Rating  -  Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

Hello, everyone. Today evidently brings us another appearance from the mystery compiler who really likes double definitions, last seen here in DT 29493. No, it's not - we learned during the day that today's puzzle was compiled by celebrated young setter Navy, making his first Telegraph appearance after an absence of just over a year.

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 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    Sweet  nothing (6)
TRIFLE:  A double definition to start.  The sweet is a colourful layered dessert 

4a    The compiler had substance and character (8)
IDENTITY:  The contraction of "the compiler had" from the perspective of the complier with substance or being 

9a    Sweeter sort of broadcast? (6)
KINDER:  A homophone (broadcast) of an informal adverb meaning "sort of" 

Avocado or strange Kinder Egg?

10a   Cheek eaten by an evil murderer (8)
ASSASSIN:  Cheek or lip is contained in (eaten by) a synonym of "an evil" (including the article) 

12a   Imitate kiss and climax (4)
APEX:  Imitate or copy with the single letter signifying a kiss 

13a   Feel good with guy? (5)
GROPE:  The single letter for good is followed by a guy that steadies a tent 

A tent guy

14a   Previously included in London census (4)
ONCE:  The answer is hidden in (included in) the remainder of the clue 

17a   Cocktail past its sell by date? (3-9)
OLD-FASHIONED:  A cryptic definition of a cocktail whose name suggests it's not contemporary 

20a   Breaking up, poems contain satisfaction (12)
COMPENSATION:  An anagram (breaking up) of POEMS CONTAIN 

23a   Split  payment (4)
RENT:  A double definition.  The payment is for the use of something you don't own 

24a   Small hint first -- you'll need these to fill the grid! (5)
CLUES:  The clothing abbreviation for small comes after a synonym of hint 

25a   Old American is half-crazy American (4)
INCA:  One half of an anagram (half-crazy) of AMERICAN (the answer is also an anagram of half of AMERICAN)

28a   Golf man I teased for birdie? (8)
FLAMINGO:  An anagram (teased) of GOLF MAN I 

29a   Smiled, having support (6)
BEAMED:  A double definition.  A roof might be supported thus 

In Santa Fe, a roof is supported with vigas

30a   Fancy and educated, too (8)
LIKEWISE:  Join synonyms of fancy and of educated 

31a   Small hotel in the air (6)
SKINNY:  A type of hotel is inserted in air or heavens 



1d    Succeed with a weapon and acknowledge the applause (4,1,3)
TAKE A BOW:  Concatenate succeed or work with A from the clue and a stringed weapon. I was briefly troubled by the required synonym of succeed, but Chambers Thesaurus has "will the drug take" introducing its nineteenth set of synonyms, which convinced me it was OK   

2d    Bar with nude dancing -- nothing might suggest lewdness (8)
INNUENDO:  A bar or hotel that we visited not long ago with an anagram (dancing) of NUDE and the single letter for nothing 

3d    German song  told a tale (4)
LIED:  A double definition.  The tale told isn't true


5d    Upset daughter is chosen for job (12)
DISAPPOINTED:  Put together the genealogical abbreviation for daughter, IS from the clue, and "chosen for job" 

6d    Nice and tidy (4)
NEAT:  A double definition.  Nice/clever and tidy/orderly

Whiskey without water or anything else

7d    Silly to eat small nuts (6)
INSANE:  Silly or senseless containing (to eat) the clothing abbreviation for small 

8d    Pulled American journalist (6)
YANKED:  A slang word for an American is followed by the usual abbreviated boss journalist 

11d   Love entering strangely garish place in islands (12)
ARCHIPELAGOS:  The letter representing a love tennis score inserted in (entering) an anagram (strangely) of GARISH PLACE 

15d   Girl's seasonal strain (5)
CAROL:  The sort of strain we'd be hearing if we could go to the shops now is also a female name 

16d   Safer alone, hiding far from domestic (5)
FERAL:  The first two words of the clue are hiding the answer 

18d   Some piano man nicely returned spice (8)
CINNAMON: Another hidden answer, found as  some of the reversal (returned) of the remainder of the clue 

19d   Deep down in part of hospital, emptied lorry (8)
INWARDLY:  Link together IN from the clue, a big hospital room, and the outer letters of (emptied) LorrY 

21d   Filled with rage if rule is broken (6)
IREFUL:  An anagram (is broken) of IF RULE 

22d   Open a French store (6)
UNPACK:  One of the French words for "a" is followed by store or stow 

26d   Thought to fight with wife (4)
VIEW:  Fight or compete with the genealogical abbreviation for wife 

27d   Look from castle towards the north? (4)
PEEK:  The reversal (towards the north, in a down clue) of the main bit of a castle

Taunting Frenchman looks from castle


Thanks to today’s setter. My favourite clue today was 9a. Which clues did you like best?

The Quick Crossword pun:  SIN + GAP + POOR = SINGAPORE

84 comments on “DT 29547

  1. There were a few head scratchers in today’s offering but it was most enjoyable and a satisfying solve. I thought associating 30a with “fancy” was a bit strange. Favourite clues for me were 19d and the well hidden lurker at 18d.

    Many thanks to the setter and Mr K for the hints and the cats. Not so many today.

  2. As Mr K said a bit heavy on the double definitions but otherwise I thought this was quite clever and enjoyable.
    I’m guessing the homophone at 9a may illicit a few comments from the purists but I’m 9a ok with it.
    Podium places go to the excellent 16d plus the clever 25a with 30a taking the last spot.
    Many thanks to the setter and to Mr K.

  3. A sound Tuesday puzzle and **/*** for me today.
    Thanks to Mr K for the succeed synonym explanation in1d, I thought 9a was a bit ‘iffy’ but I suppose ok with the ?
    Last in was 5d mainly as a result of spelling 5d wrongly ! never mind.
    Liked the 19dcharade .
    Tricky Quickie 22a should have been in a cryptic-top draw.

  4. 2*/4*. I enjoyed this with everything falling into place smoothly except for my last two in: 30a & 22d which took a bit of head scratching. Probably a bit fanciful, but could 31a indicate today’s mystery setter as a possible newbie to the Telegraph stable?

    I can’t decide whether or not I like 9a.

    I didn’t know the cocktail in 17a but it did give me the excuse for a bit of nostalgia:

    30a was my favourite.

    Many thanks to the setter and to Mr K.

      1. Welcome back Luca, thanks for commenting, and thanks for a fun puzzle.

        Was DT 29493 also one of yours?

      2. Thanks for popping in and for providing us with a lovely puzzle. Very nice to have you back.

      3. Goodness, is it really you, Navy! I do hope that things are working out for you and that you will get to contribute to the Telegraph team more often in the future. Probably won’t stop me from complaining about some of those synonyms though!

      4. As I always say, everyone on the blog appreciates the setter saying hello, particularly after such an enjoyable puzzle Navy.

      5. I’ve come across/up to the DT from the Times,I find the DT compilers can be ‘unmasked’ once you spot their reasoning it does make the crossword come to life!
        upon reflection,the Times has given me the odd fit of pique,with the DT,however,one knows,a bit more thought and it will be completed!

      6. So lovely to meet the setter. I really enjoyed the challenge and had no problem with 9A. I laughed out loud several times and had to explain to my wife why crosswords could be funny.

  5. This had some unexpected clues and was fresh and intriguing (2*/5*). I really enjoyed the compiler’s approach and the variet of clues, especially including a great anagram in 11d, a superb reverse lurker in 18d and the well-constructed 19d and 30a. Many thanks to the compiler and to MrK for the hints and cats.

  6. One of those today where the answers came to me faster than the reasons why. 22d and 23a in particular. **/*** The style didn’t feel familiar to me. I’d heard of the cocktail in 17a although I don’t know precisely what it consists of, not on my bar list! 11a favourite. I spent a few moments trying to come up with an island group before the penny dropped. Thanks to all.

  7. I struggled to get this started, but once it started flowing, it just didn’t stop. All over in *** time, but I couldn’t parse 25a, and I’m not sure that I have come across a half-anagram before.

    This compiler does like double definitions. Thanks to them and Mr.K.

  8. Like RD 22d & 30a were the last 2 in & along with the 17a cocktail, which I’d never heard of, these were really the only slight hold ups in a swift solve with no parsing issues. Quite liked the 9a homophone & pick of the clues for me was the reversed lurker at 18d, clocked needless to say after bunging in the answer.
    Thanks to the setter & to Mr K.

  9. Another largely straightforward and relatively untaxing puzzle for a Tuesday. The reverse lurker is always a favourite clue type, but my COTD was 17a. Overall a thoroughly enjoyable challenge.

    Many thanks to both Misters.

  10. Whoever the setter is, a good example of typical Tuesday fare – completed at a gallop – **/****.
    Candidates for favourite – 14a, 30a, and 5d – and the winner is 5d.
    A bit of a Hmm for 13a.
    Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  11. Call that a cocktail? It sounds so complicated that I would expect to get it served before I finish ordering it.
    Anyway, it was new to me and only got it once I dismissed the strain in 15d to be some kind of illness. But who would name their child a malady? I think Malaria or Stye would be quite nice.
    13a made me laugh out loud.
    Thanks to the setter and to Mr K for the review.

  12. This was a real struggle it must be the double definitions that out fox me. Thank goodness for the Mr K hints which helped me through. After putting it down going for a walk and referring again to the hints I managed with only having to reveal a couple.
    Thanks again to Mr K and setter.

  13. I do have a problem accepting some of this compiler’s synonyms, strange really when I know only too well how easily I accept those from Mr T.
    My picks from the good stuff were 4&13a.

    Thanks to our setter and to Mr K for the feline-filled review although it was actually the ‘advert’ for avocados that made me laugh the most!

  14. Not too tricky but didn’t like some of the clues especially 9a! Thanks to all. Short and brief today.

  15. This was quick and good fun, though I too am a bit uneasy about 9a (over here, however, one hears ‘kinda, sorta’ too often so I guess 9a is in keeping with today’s hip slanguage). I really liked 30a, my COTD, and the rekrul at 18d, with 22 my LOI. Thanks to Mr K, especially for the Hillary shot (!), and today’s compiler. * / ***

  16. Enjoyable puzzle for all but three in the SW corner for which I had to go to Mr K’s blog. Too many good clues but none outstanding.

    Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  17. Apart from the overly involved 25a i thought this was very enjoyable. My fav was 31a.
    Thx to all

  18. **/****. Succinct clues and gerally quite clever. Took me a bit longer to parse some but all very solvable. Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  19. 1d reminded me of an incident some years ago in my happy years as a textile artist – I was preparing for an exhibition and my subject was music.
    I had made a life sized violin out of fabric, stitch, burning and burnishing and dissolvable fabric, all the wonderful techniques which one can use nowadays. The
    only thing which was causing me a problem was the bow (yes, I know 1d is a different kind of bow but it jogged the memory) Driving out of Cambridge I remembered the model aircraft shop in Trumpington Street and screeched to a stop opposite. Leaving my car rather dubiously parked I shot across the road through the Friday evening traffic and dashed into the shop. Do you have any lengths of thinnish wood, I asked explaining what I wanted to make. Yes, they had lengths of balsa wood but it was white and came in 3 foot lengths. I examined the various sizes, and made my purchase, saying no they did not need to wrap it as I was parked opposite. I came out of the shop clutching my length of white balsawood and stood on the edge of the pavement looking for a gap in the traffic. Suddenly all the cars stopped. A man in a van leaned out and said kindly ‘It’s alright, dear, you can go now’. I looked a bit bewildered and then a passing young man took my elbow firmly and said ‘I’ll help you across’ and he guided me across the road. This was some years ago when I was not an elderly lady on crutches! I thanked him for his trouble, went over to my car, threw the white stick in the back and drove off. I was some miles down the road before the realisation hit me and I have often wondered what those well intentioned Good Samaritans thoughted when they saw a partially sighted woman toss her white cane in the car and then drive off! Book Group Zoom now, so crossword will have to wait, I just thought that might make you smile.

    1. What a fantastic tale! It will be a while before anyone tops that, Daisygirl. Quite made my day! :good:

  20. SW corner held me up for a long time. I fell straight into the trap in 30a in assuming that ‘fancy’ the definition.
    I thought 9a would raise a few eyebrows.
    I think 15d is the first reference to (the non-existent) Christmas that I have seen in a crossword. I’m sure there are several on the way over the next week.
    Thanks all.

    1. Yes, HIYD, 9a. The homophone ends with an A so can’t possibly sound like “kindeRRRR”, I hear. Mind you, I’m from up t’North so it worked for me.

      1. First thing of thought of when I solved the clue was The Not The Nine O’clock
        Sketch, – “It kinda lingers” (ahem).

      2. It’s obviously just a pronunciation thing – I’m basically a Northerner (not far from Jose, actually – Buxworth) and I’d pronounce it as ‘kind – er’.

        1. But how do you pronounce your village? As it is spelt or the old name Bugsworth (originally Buggesworth, I believe). I’m a “Bugsworth” man myself. It depends on how long you’ve lived around here, I guess.

          1. I’ve always written it as Buxworth and fudged the pronunciation to fit in with the company I was keeping! It’s almost 40 years since I lived there – we were at Crist Cottage, Crist Knob, up the hill at the back of what was then Pat Phoenix’s pub. My younger daughter was born in the cottage and christened at the village church.

  21. This took me a while – well in to *** time. Mostly enjoyable, but I wasn’t keen on the half anagram, and i thought 24a was quite weak.
    Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  22. My sort of crossword, amusing and not too difficult 😃 **/*** Favourites 15d & 31a 👍 Thanks to the Setter and to Mr K especially for explaining the “Gummy Bear” I am sure it will come in useful some day 😬

  23. Driving myself a little 7d trying to recall a film from years and years ago where a bloke keeps asking for an 17a. It was the memory of this that led me to solve 17a very quickly, but I just can’t pinpoint the movie.

    For years I have fumbled through the crossword accompanied by Vaughan Williams, Satie, Bach, Handel, and other classical pals. Recently I have taken to listening to ‘classic’ albums instead. I have no idea why. So, today’s soundtrack was one of my favourite albums of all time. America ‘Homecoming’ (1972).

    Thanks to Miss Terri Setter and the celebrated Mr. K.

  24. Off at a gallop in the North but then slowed down in the South. 21d isn’t a word that comes instantly to mind. 13a was Fav. Came across 17a during misspent younger days living in NYC but found it sickly and in any case not keen on rye whiskey. Thank you Mysteron and MrK.

  25. I began at a fair pace, then stuttered along for a bit and raced off to a finish. When first reading 17a I did begin to wonder just what it might be, as I’m not great on cocktails, but it did soon reveal itself once a few checkers had gone in. 25 & 31 had me guessing the longest until pennies dropped, but overall this was a nice gentle Tuesday puzzle. Choosing a favourite is hard for me today, but I think I’ll have to opt for the well hidden spice in 18d. Thanks to today’s setter and Mr K.

  26. A relatively smooth solve with this **/**** puzzle for Tuesday. Slowed up by entering 27d the wrong way around to start, but when I realised my error, quickly finished off the SE with 25a last in.
    Some clever clueing I thought and some made me grin. COTD candidates include 4a, 14a, 24a, 30a, 1d & 15d with a tie for winners 1d/15d

    Thanks to setter and Mr K

  27. ** for difficulty and *** for enjoyment, with 31a and 15a as really excellent clues … not so keen on 21d though. Thank you setter and Mr K

  28. About average difficulty for a Tuesday.
    I was held up briefly in the bottom left corner and didn’t see why 25a was what it obviously was.
    My favourite was either 9 or 13a.
    Thanks to today’s setter and to Mr K.

  29. I was dead on wavelength today, no problems except for 31a, I needed e-help for that. Why? I don’t know, especially with the checkers. Fave was 18d, very slick!
    Thanks to Luca, well done you, a fun offering. Thanks to Mr. K for our cats, and for sneaking in the Hillary laugh.

  30. I think this was the best puzzle ever! had a few laugh out loud moments and really appreciated the naughtiness.

  31. Always enjoy Mr K’s blogs and cats but the ****** surprise was superb, as indeed was the illustration for 13a. Had some difficulties with the last two rows otherwise no trouble. I thought the crossword had a fresh feel about it so it was of no surprise to find it was one of Navy’s. Come back soon!

  32. Thanks to Luca and Mr K. Despite not being a drinker (half a shandy will make me tipsy), I did know 17a, I think it was the favourite tipple of the one of the detective books I read. Didn’t care for 9a, and I’ve never heard anyone actually use 21d. Otherwise an enjoyable solve, and kept me busy while the plumber was here putting in a new toilet. Hurray, comfort height at last. Peter had installed them in our last house, but with a torn rotator cuff we thought it best to enlist a plumber this time.

  33. Aha. Back to the crossword after a Book Group meeting and then finishing my hand made Christmas cards😇 thank you mr K for the hints which I needed for 9a. Isn’t that a brand name? Love the cats as usual, how did they get all those cats into boxes?! Thanks to the setter for a lovely puzzle and some nice long anagrams to make a start.

    1. H, DG. I expect that it’s enough to have one single occupancy box per cat, and then they just organize themselves.

      Thanks for your great balsa wood anecdote up above.

  34. A very enjoyable crossword, thank you Navy. More please! I liked 31a and the seasonal spice in 18d, especially as I’m making a Christmas pudding tomorrow! The quickie pun made me chuckle. Thanks to Mr K for the blog.

  35. I don’t know what ** time is for me, which is why I never put star ratings, but I can assure you all this wasn’t it. As we don’t need more than one Brian on the blog I’ll confine myself to saying I probably wasn’t on the right wavelength or that I’m a bit tired having been out with my dogs all day. For once they both behaved themselves impeccably. Any road up I got there in the end so happy days. Favourite was probably 19d as I spent far too long trying to work ENT into the word, wrong wavelength. I would also like to thank the setter for coming onto the blog and Mr. K.

  36. I loved this. I have never giggled as much when solving any previous crossword. Well done.

  37. I was left with a few last night so looked up the cocktail beginning with Old. No problems then. I had been looking for specific island groups for 11d and could not get the ones which I can’t spell (with penguins) out of my head. 12 and 30a and 15d were my favourites. Just re-read the good Guardian article about Navy from November 2018 when she was 16. I had forgotten that her pseudonym Navy had come from an anagram of her name Lucy Evans (Navy Clues). Could this be the reason for 24a. Thank you Navy and Mr K although I didn’t think 9a was anything to do with Kinder eggs.

    1. Yes, 9a has nothing to do with Kinder eggs. The pair of pictures was inserted to provide another route to the answer that I hoped readers might find amusing.

  38. 3*/3*…..
    liked 27D “look from castle towards the north? (4)”…..
    & the peeping puss in the hint.

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