DT 29634 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29634

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29634

A full review by Big Dave

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This puzzle was published on 27th March 2021

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Gnomey is inundated with (fee-paying) work, so I will be sharing this slot with crypticsue for the foreseeable future in order to give him a break.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a    Solving aid that’s peaked? (8-3)
THINKING-CAP – don this to help with puzzle solving?

7a    Risks taken by rich ancestors (7)
CHANCES – hidden (taken by) inside the clue

8a    Charge retiring US soldier occupying Scottish island (7)
ARRAIGN – the reversal (retiring) of a US soldier inside (occupying) a Scottish island

10a    Current description of water-skier, perhaps (8)
UNDERTOW – split as (5,3) this could be (perhaps) a description of water-skier

11a    More suitable tradesperson (6)
FITTER – two definitions

13a    Flower shirts (4)
TEES – two definitions – in Crosswordland a flower can be a river

14a    See eel fighting with chub — it could be Danish (4,6)
BLUE CHEESE – an anagram (fighting) of SEE EEL with CHUB

16a    Scruffy child, kid with a cake (10)
RAGAMUFFIN – a verb meaning to kid followed by the A from the clue and a cake – an example of how Americanisms are taking over – it always used to be a thick round baked yeast roll, usually toasted and served with butter

18a    Peel fruit, we hear (4)
PARE – sounds like (we hear) pear (fruit)

21a    United improved, Solskjaer finally sacked (6)
ALLIED – [R]allied (improved) without the final letter of [Solskjae]R – could be a prophesy of the fate of the manager of Manchester United?

22a    American’s well-built, as they’ve ordered (8)
HEAVYSET – this American word meaning well-built is an anagram (ordered) of AS THEY’VE

24a    Controversial reason for action online? (7)
EMOTIVE – a word meaning a reason for action with a suffix often used to indcate online (E / Electronic)

25a    Bring to life musical pair on the air (7)
ANIMATE – sounds like (on the air) Annie (musical) and partner (mate)

26a    Press cast to drink beer, facing issue in rep (11)
SALESPERSON – an anagram (cast) of PRESS around (to drink) ALE (beer) and followed by SON (issue)


1d    Rubbish tango: move like a duck! (7)
TWADDLE – the letter represented by Tango in the NATO Phonetic alphabet followed by a verb meaning to move like a duck

2d    At home, dog, small, suffers (6)
INCURS – a two-letter word meaning at home followed by a dog and S(mall)

3d    Blows to bring one round? (4,2,4)
KISS OF LIFE – Chambers puts it best – mouth-to mouth or mouth-to-nose resuscitation in which a person blows gently into the mouth or nose of an unconscious person, allowing the lungs to deflate after each blow

4d    Cheat regularly on capsized mariner (4)
NOAH – the even letters (regularly) of cHeAt followed by the ON from the clue, all reversed (capsized in a down clue)

5d    Coast road‘s my special place (8)
CORNICHE – a three-letter interjection meaning My! followed by a special place

6d    Triple rum, hot inside, could be aphrodisiac (7)
PHILTRE – an anagram (rum) of TRIPLE around H(ot)

7d    Chip glass that’s found on bed (11)
COUNTERPANE – a gambling chip followed by a sheet of glass

9d    HQ never moving money about (5,6)
NERVE CENTRE – an anagram (moving) of NEVER followed by some money and a word meaning about

12d    Careful doctor led a tribe east (10)
DELIBERATE – an anagram (doctor) of LED A TRIBE followed by E(ast)

15d    Jeopardise hosting leader in Ark Royal (8)
IMPERIAL – a verb meaning to jeopardise around (hosting) the initial letter (leader) of A[rk]

17d    Support for execution? (7)
GALLOWS – a not-very-cryptic definition of a wooden frame for hanging criminals

19d    Stay away from a black spot (7)
ABSTAIN – the A from the clue followed by B(lack) and a spot or blemish

20d    Shuns when without space (6)
AVOIDS – a two-letter word meaning when around (without) a space

23d    Exercise outside to compress muscles (4)
PECS – some Physical Exercise followed by the outer letters of C[ompres]S

Thanks to our Puzzles Editor for the entertainment.


3 comments on “DT 29634

  1. Thanks for the review BD.
    In reference to 16a, in North America we do have “English Muffins” which are real muffins. Then, while (American) muffins may include such things as chocolate chips or raisins, muffins with (external) decoration, such as icing, are called cup cakes.
    Go figure!

  2. The muffins on the reduced shelves in Booths this week were definitely the thick bready sort — and delicious!

    Thank you to Big Dave for the review, and congratulations to Gnomethang on fee-paying work (which is definitely the best sort of work).

    1. I wish there was a Booths near us. Fabulous supermarket and we used the one at Poulton-le-Fylde all the time when I worked in Thornton Cleveleys.

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