DT 29556 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29556 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29556 (Hints)

The Saturday Crossword Club

Hosted by Tilsit

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

Good morning and I hope you’ve had a good festive period thus far.

I have no printer where I am staying and so tried to find the DT Crossword App (is there one?) and had no success. I tried via the website on my iPad and gave up after half an hour as I couldn’t enter answers.

I then went and got the trusty laptop and got in through the website and was able to solve the puzzle. Another in the run of fairly friendly prize puzzles that we have had on a Saturday, but I’m less than happy with a couple of the definitions which I feel are a bit loose. Mind you after wrestling with the Elgar Double Toughie (blog up later), I think I welcome something that wasn’t too taxing.

Any bridge players that would like something to do today, the online club I run is holding a session this afternoon at 2pm. If you’d like to play, get in touch via the club’s mail account (stretfordbridge@gmail.com) and I’ll send instructions.

As this is the last Prize Puzzle blog, I’d like to take this chance to wish you every good wish for the New Year. After this one, I’d like to say it couldn’t be any worse, but who knows?

Anyway, on with the motley, and here’s today’s hints. Remember that unless it’s a first or last clue, I’m not going to hint at the answer if it’s a full anagram. Look for words that indicate movement as indicators.

As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, an assortment of clues, including some of the more difficult ones, have been selected and hints provided for them.

Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”. Where the hint describes a construct as “usual” this means that more help can be found in The Usual Suspects, which gives a number of the elements commonly used in the wordplay. Another useful page is Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing, which features words with meanings that are not always immediately obvious.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions.

Some hints follow.


1a Part-timer shocks alluring women (11)
The short name for a part-time worker, or more accurately a short-term worker is followed by what shocks are in the tonsorial sense of the word.

11a Hit yourself (6,3)
Two definitions. The name for a hit record, and a way of describing yourself.

12a Weapon striking girl? (9)
Another double definition. It’s the full name for a type of weapon, and the name for an attractive woman, usually preceded by ‘blonde’.

13a The writer of this puzzle a subject for discussion (5)
I think I have seen this clue about four or five times this week in various dailies. It happens sometimes, but it provided my starting point for today. THE plus a way of describing the creator of this puzzle gives you a word for a discussion subject.

14a Something like a cricket cap is coveted, and delighting Australian openers (6)
Take the first letter of six of the words in the clue to get the answer.

24a Money man in more ostentatious clothes (9)
Something meaning more ostentatious ‘clothes’ (goes round) IN.

26a Move top article in magazine (9)
A word meaning to move and the word for a top of a hill make something found in a magazine (not a printed one).

28a Rich yellow food in salad stuffed in mouth, perhaps? (11)
The name for a food accompaniment that is rich and yellow (and usually causes chaos on Masterchef). Inside a slang word for your mouth goes an anagram (stuffed) of IN SALAD.


2d Course record so modest at the outset (5)
A type of 7″ record that often was popular around this ti.e of the year, plus so and the first letter of modest  (at the outset) give a venue for the Sport of Kings.

4d Stem river perhaps? (6)
This word has 24 different definitions on the Chambers app. Here’s one of them and a cryptic one. The name for a rooting stem that runs along the ground and a word a cryptic crossword compiler may describe a river, other than a flower (flow-er) or bank-er (one with banks).

5d African very African! (8)
An East African person is found by taking a short word for very and the name for a West African person.

7d Reported impertinence by those waiting for a haircut? Spicy stuff! (8,5)
A homophone for a group of people in line waiting for a haircut and a word for impertinence or cheek.

8d Solitary type, fellow struggling to carry on (4,4)
An anagram (struggling) of fellow with ON inside.

17d Flower opened, a daisy’s beginning to come up (8)
If something is opened (particularly a jar) it is often said to have this, add A and D (beginning to Daisy) and you get a flower! How many of you went looking for a river automatically?

21d Swimmer touring islands and one country (7)
The name of an edible fish goes round (touring) an abbreviation for islands and the Roman numeral for one. This gives you a country.

22d An official in college on the range (6)
AN plus the head of a college gives a word relating to a range of mountains.

25d Clubs I initially rely on, not spades (5)
I, plus some first letters give the name for some sporting clubs.

Now, as usual, play nicely and avoid the naughty step. I’ll see you next year!

The Crossword Club is now open.

Here’s something beautiful to finish the year. Discover the whole concerto, it’s amazing.

Could new readers please read the Welcome post and the FAQ before posting comments or asking questions about the site.

As this is a Prize crossword, please don’t put any ANSWERS, whether WHOLE, PARTIAL or INCORRECT, or any ALTERNATIVE CLUES in your comment. If in doubt, leave it out!

Please read these instructions carefully – they are not subject to debate or discussion. Offending comments may be redacted or, in extreme cases, deleted. In all cases the administrator’s decision is final.

If you don’t understand, or don’t wish to comply with, the conventions for commenting on weekend prize puzzles then save yourself (and me) a lot of trouble and don’t leave a comment.  BD

The Quick Crossword pun: jib+booty=Djibouti

72 comments on “DT 29556 (Hints)

  1. A bit of a struggle with one or two clues but otherwise a very enjoyable solve. I began slowly but picked up the pace as checkers appeared. I’m not sure how the answer to 26a relates to the clue but I will have to await the review. There was plenty to like such as 10a, 16a and 21d but my COTD is 7d.

    Many thanks to the setter and to Tilsit for the hints and all the very best to you for 2021.

    I’m not sure about the Quickie pun. I must be missing something.

    1. I read 26a as the first part means “to move” and the second part is a “top” of a hillside.

      7d was also our favourite.

      1. I got that part. Hippy ajs but I don’t think the answer matches the definition. Maybe it does but I think it’s quite loose.

        Better not say any more because I should think it’s stale Christmas pud on the naughty step!

        1. The quickie pun is a small country in the top left hand bit of Africa – maybe it’s called something different now.

          1. At the risk of being pedantic, I would say the middle right bit of Africa….Merusa beat me to it.

            1. :oops: I give in – at least I was right about its being in Africa. As I know I’ve said before I’m not much good at NSE or W – not much good at left or right either.

  2. Well in my ** difficulty time until I juddered to a halt at my last, 7d.
    Ashamed of myself until the penny eventually dropped resoundingly.
    Many thanks to this Saturday setter and to Tilsit.

  3. Took some time to get going with this. Many good but head-scratching clues. Last one to fall was 22dn but I cannot see now why it took so long! I liked 1ac, 26ac and 5dn.

    Thanks to the setter and Tilsit.

  4. 22d my final entry and 17d my favourite in this moderately testing but very enjoyable prize puzzle. As Steve says at #1, this was a slow start and then a fairly rapid race to the end. A good tussle.

    Many thanks setter and Tilsit.

  5. One of Big Dave’s LTLs (long time lurkers) usually US-based but managed to get across (with quarantine) to see family inc new granddaughter. Thanks to all for the brilliant crosswords – sometimes, like today :-), we complete! Really enjoyed this one but needed Tilsit’s explanation to parse 4D.
    Happy Boxing Day!

  6. The last across, 28a, was the last to fall for me as I remembered, with horror, the only time I tried to make it! Anyway, this SPP was a lot of fun to do, and I enjoyed the wit and humour especially of 7d and 17d. So those three are my podium stars. Thanks to Tilsit and today’s setter. 1.5* / ****

    1. I once gave brief thought to having a lapel pin badge made for a uni reunion group. I had a brief look to get an idea of prices. For about three months I was inundated with adverts for pin badges!

    2. I’m bound to get in trouble with BD but it’s a bit like the other rich yellow thingy, where you rescue it by taking a starter and adding a bit of the original and then keep doing things in an agitated manner until all is recovered.

      That’s about as cryptic as I can get under the circs….

  7. 22d and 28a took a bit of teasing out in this otherwise straightforward prize.
    When I saw 17d, I wondered if the setter was spying on the blog as there was some exchanges about it the other day. A bit like these ads you get after searching for something.
    Last week there was some talk about sneakers and trainers and since I keep getting ads about sport shoes. Weird.
    Favourite 11a.
    Thanks to the setter and to Tilsit for the Saturday club.
    Shall see you again on the Elgar review later.

    1. I once gave thought to having a lapel pin badge made for a uni reunion group. I had a brief look on line to get an idea of prices. For about three months I was inundated with adverts for pin badges!

  8. Pretty straightforward until a wee bit of head scratching required with 4 left to go (7&17d plus 26&28a) which near doubled the eventual completion time. I thought the wordplay at 26a ok if a bit tenuous but I’m afraid I still don’t get the parsing of my 17d bung in even after reading the review. Picks of the clues for me today were 12,14&28a along with 5&8d.
    Thanks to the setter & wishing Tilsit a happy & healthy new year & with thanks for his Saturday service throughout this one.

  9. Found this hard going in parts but it did contain in 7d one of the biggest groaners for a long time.
    No favourites just pleased to finish it.
    Thx to all

    1. Indeed – the biggest groaner ever. And to make matters worse, that is not how us bloody Americans spell that word.

      Thanks to Tilsit and the Usual Suspects for the review. And to Big Dave for his cute little snowflakes.

      Happy Holidays from Mr T
      Merry Christmas from Mrs T

      1. I wondered about the spelling. I’ve now lived in the US longer than Jamaica, and am getting to the point where I can’t remember which is Brit and which is Yank! Very confusing at times.

  10. I took three attempts to finish this, but finish it I did. Nothing to do with last night’s consumption, of course.

    Last in was 28a, as so many others have mentioned, and I did need Tilsit’s explanation for the parsing thereof.

    COTD has to be the groan-worthy 7d.

    Many thanks to the setter and Tilsit.

  11. Thank goodness for the sprinkling of oldies but goodies, 12a and 5d for example, otherwise this would have been a real stinker, completed at a gallop – 2.5*/3*.
    Candidates for favourite – 11a, 24a, and 17d – and the winner is 17d.
    Thanks to the setter and Tilsit.

    1. How do Canadians spell 7d?
      (If you can answer without self incrimination). The Missus is making scones.

      And we now look forward to your weekly weather reports, it makes Boston feel quite temperate !

      Mr T

      1. A number of variations including as shown in 7d, with the sixth letter of 7d replaced by another letter from later in the alphabet, with fewer letters and a couple of ‘-‘ sprinkled in, I could go on.
        Anyway, what most people refer to as the first word of 7d, however it is spelt, is really the result of the ‘manly’ activity of outdoor grilling.
        The real deal is, as Wikipedia says, the result of cooking using smoke at low temperatures and long cooking times (several hours) to, as I have a vague recollection of from my dozen or so years in Texas, turn the lower quality meat into something quite edible.

        Had any nor’easters recently? That’s one weather phenomenon that we don’t get in Manitoba.

  12. Took me a few minutes to sort out the parsing of 28a but no other hiccups to report.
    7d made me smile so gets a place in the top three along with 11a & 8d.

    Thanks to our Boxing Day setter and to Tilsit for the hints and music.
    Just about to eat my Christmas lunch – spent so long on Skype and phone calls to various friends and relatives yesterday that I never quite got around to cooking it!

  13. 4d was my last in for some reason and 14a my favourite. The puzzle was done mostly before lunch unusually, with a Whisky Mac to warm me up after going out to refill the bird feeders. There are eight round the garden. It is freezing out there. Thanks to Tilsit and the setter and I hope everyone got through yesterday in one piece.
    Hey folks, I did the splits yesterday fortified by a couple of glasses of champagne! Nine weeks after my new knee. DD2 took a photo and I toyed with the idea of updating my year old atavar but it was all too complicated. But I did do it, cross my ❤️.

    1. I needed to try three different pair of glasses to see if the first word was stern or stem.
      Even as I’m typing they look both the same. Oh dear!

    2. Well done but did you check with your physio first DG?
      I know too many people who have knee ops and finished up with all the pain for no gain by rushing their recovery.
      All said for the best of reasons, not a medic but I know that the older you get the slower the recovery is. DG, I would hate to think you set things back by expecting too much.

      1. Have no fear, LROK, the leg that went out to the front was the new knee leg so no pressure involved. I am an old hand at the splits but have to confess I was dared to do it, I was pleased I could get to my feet afterwards unaided! Believe me, I am very careful.

  14. Favourites 11 20a and 5 7 9 17d. Got through all but 3 with ease. The three were 26 and 28a and 22d in which I’m not alone! I thought I had struck gold with 28a several times only to find not quite right. Got it eventually but needed the hint for parsing. When I eventually got 26a I did manage to sort out the parsing and think this is spot on when read carefully by adding punctuation. 22d was the last and it was a doh moment. I should have got it sooner but went down a few blind alleys. Thanks setter and Tilsit

  15. A nicely challenging puzzle, albeit with a few loose definitions (2.5*/4*). Like others, I liked 7d and 28a (tricky to make but delicious served with globe artichokes). Thank you to the long-suffering Tilsit for the hints and to rhe compiler. Hope everyone is having some fun this Christmas.

  16. For the most part found this an enjoyable challenge with answers coming at a regular pace. Not sure which specific definitions Tilsit found a bit loose but for me I did not like the abbreviated county in 20a, the weapon (case?) in 12a and perhaps it is my Kiwi accent which meant i really ho ho ho hummed at 7d. Thanks Tilsit for parsing 17d, 20d and 28a (the bought stuff is never yellow!).

  17. 2*/3*. This made a pleasant puzzle on a day needed for recovery. I didn’t much care for 7d but I was OK with everything else. 11a & 8d were my joint favourites.

    Many thanks to the setter and to Tilsit.

    1. Indeed. 7d should be rewarded with a visit to the naughty corner – Welsh Rhubarb and Blueberry Scones in about an hour (pronounced like Rolling Stones don’t you know).

      Mr T is hunting for His Dundee marmalade to make a whisky toddy for breakfast. I think he has finally lost it.

      Happy Crimbo from Boston – Mrs T

        1. I beg to differ – scone rhymes with gone – depends on where you live I think. Not to mention the order of the cream and jam. :roll:

        1. I’d say it rhymes with gone and you put the cream on the bottom! I find the scone/scone argument tends to be class based. My mother-in-law would say it rhymes with stone as she thinks this is the “posh” pronunciation even though in my experience most posh people pronounce it to rhyme with gone. A bit like “serviette” versus “napkin”.

          Re the cream/jam argument – the cream replaces butter so you naturally put it on the bottom. You wouldn’t put butter on top of jam. I used to do the opposite until I heard this argument and then switched and decided it was nicer that way!

  18. A steady solve once I got in, again a puzzle where I completed the lower half first.
    With thanks to setter and Tilsit.

  19. Thanks for opening my eyes to Hummel, Tilsit; a composer I’d heard of, but I knew nothing whatsoever of his music – will now search out the full concerto. As for the crossword . . . . a nice Boxing Day solve over a light lunch. Nothing too arduous and good fun all round. There were several clues I liked, but 7d was my favourite, followed by 9d, 20a, 24a & 27a. Thanks to today’s setter and of course to Tilsit . . . . my best wishes for the New Year to you also.

  20. Slow start but then picked up pace….foxed by 4d needing a further letter clue despite having all the checkers….but no complaints….

  21. Quite tricky for me today…needed help from Tilsit but got there in the end.
    Thanks to the setter and to Tilsit.

    Horrible weather up here. Very windy and rainy. Not helped by our boiler continuing to be on the blink with no chance of a replacement until January. Good job we have an immersion heater, a gas fire and some electric heaters. Trying to count my blessings, but it’s an uphill struggle some days.

  22. I didn’t have any major trouble today but did get a bit bogged down in the bottom half.
    It turns out that not only can I not make 28a but neither can I spell it.
    The fourth word in the clue for 14a made me go blind for a while.
    I liked 20 and 26a and 5 and 7d.
    Thanks to the setter and to Tilsit.
    Still have yesterday’s crossword to do – thank goodness for that and the NTSPP which I haven’t even looked at yet.

  23. Bit of a struggle laat 4 taking me well into 2* time, with 7d & 22d holding out longest.
    Like many others 7d my COTD. Well worthy of a cryptic pun I thought. Can’t see what gave me a problem with 22d.
    Thanks to setter and Tilsit.

  24. Found this Saturday puzzle tricky in places and needed some head scratching and a smattering of hints to finish. **/****
    Had a couple of penny drop moments and initially the wrong answer in 20a, but once that was fixed the SE filled in easily.
    COTD include 11a, 20a, 23a, 7d & 19d with winner 7d

    Thanks to setter and Tilsit

  25. Has anybody else been highly irritated with the answer to 13d in the Quick Crossword? It wasn’t that when I went to school. I blame the Americans!

  26. Happy Kwanzaa all! I’ll get my moan and groan out of the way first, I’m cold and miserable. I’ve got the heater on at 84F but I don’t think it can handle this cold and my feet and hands are hurting. Just cracking open my egg for breakfast was painful.
    Right, crossword! A lot of tricky ones there, but interspersed with some gimmes which gave checking letters to help. All in all, very enjoyable and no real problems, except for 28a, and what a problem that was. I eventually used a word search but hurt my brain unravelling it so had to wait for Tilsit.
    Thanks to our setter, you’ve been kind to us, and thanks to Tilsit for the hints and tips. Good wishes for good health this coming year for all.

    1. Very cold up here too, Merusa–22F last night. After doing the puzzle, I returned to bed-warmth. I see that it’s warmed up to 41 outside now. Hope you’re warmer and more comfortable by now.

      1. Yes, the heaters are kicking in nicely and it’s warmer inside. Not too sure what the temp is now, it was in the 40sF up until a couple of hours ago. I’m off to the Amazon Basin until this cold spell is over, I really cannot abide the cold.

        1. We’ve resisted putting the heat on so far. House was 68F when we got up, and has only risen to 69F by early afternoon. A chance to dust off the jumpers. It’s ok as long as I keep moving, going to enjoy emptying the dryer next. Just hate to turn the heat on, it’s that nasty hot air blown through the ac vents. Now if I had a fireplace and some logs it would be crackling away by now.

          1. I have those Japanese Mitsubishi whatsits, they are much gentler than the central A/C units, but maybe they take a bit longer to work as they have no elements, they extract the heat from the air. My pool heater is the same, much kinder to the environment.

  27. Long time lurker but rarely post. Happy Christmas to all and let us hope things get better which they do not seem to be at the moment. I met some of you at Little Venice last January, unless a bomb hits Downing Street I suspect that won’t be happening this year.

    Sort of completed today’s but needed a few of the hints.

  28. Thought this a very cleverly clued puzzle. Those I couldn’t solve unaided were all my own fault, as there was nothing obtuse. Had a chuckle at 20a but 12a was COTD. I agree with those who found the first word of 26a a bit loose to mean move. Hoping to make some good inroads into my Christmas jigsaw this afternoon. Thanks to setter and Tilsit. Enjoy what’s left of Boxing Day everyone.

  29. A really enjoyable crossword. I thought 7d was quite good and raised a little chuckle but my clue of the day was 14a which was very clever! Can’t wait to see the first 17d but it will be a while yet. Thanks to Tilsit for the hints and the setter.

  30. 2*5*….
    liked 7D and also 14A “something like a cricket cap is coveted, and delighting Australian openers (6)”

  31. If 20a is a word, I’m guessing that all county abbreviations are allowed, eg Leics, Hants, Herts.

    A new one on me.

  32. I managed most of this but got stuck on the last four – 7d, 26a, 22d and 4d which I thought were much harder than the other clues owing to the substantial misdirection. Finally managed them with a hints/electronic help combo. ***/***

  33. Very slow start probably due to too much Christmas spirit dulling the thinking matter but then a fun solve ensued. First four letters of 1a not necessarily part-time. Last to go in was 4d. 14a and 7d were Favs. Thank you Mysteron and Tilsit (always enjoy your musical offerings).

  34. We still had visitors yesterday so this was put on hold as the pandemonium of two young collies with Niece and BF ran riot. The Whisky and port stocks are depleted and the chaos has now moved on and this was a light entry into the day. I had a bit of difficulty parsing 17d but got there eventually 22d however needed a hint. 28a best PDM for me
    Thanks to Tilsit and setter, have my loins been girded enough to tackle the Dada I wonder or perhaps I should do a bit of hoovering
    For the record, Scone rhymes with gone and as Cream goes WITH butter and not as a replacement the Butter Jam Cream is the order of the day here – we still have a box of Betty’s Fat Rascals (a sort of Yorkshire Scone) to tackle so I will do some more research.

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