DT 29748 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29748 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29748 (Hints)

The Saturday Crossword Club

Hosted by Senf

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

Another Saturday when you have not slept for over 24 hours.  Yesterday evening, well afternoon my time, Tilsit asked me if I could cover for him today as, once more, work was ‘getting in the way’ for him, so here I am standing, or should it be sitting, in again.

Believe it or not, once again, both the solving of the puzzle and the completion of the blog were completed in a ‘dry’ environment.  Some of the usual features of the Saturday Crossword Club might be missing but the important parts are here and I am not even going to hazard a guess at who the setter might be since I am invariably wrong.  It is a bit of an anagram fest, seven in total including two partials, so recognising them should be helpful.

Candidates for favourite – 1a, 26a, 10d, and 17d.

As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, a number of the more difficult clues have been selected and hints provided for them.

Don’t forget to follow BD’s instructions in RED at the bottom of the hints!

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:

Across

1a Document I don’t know, left at sea (8)
A single word for I don’t know (which Magnus Magnusson should have copyrighted) and the side which is left at sea – and here is the post-Brexit ‘edition’.

5a Blocks changes on the radio (6)
A homophone (on the radio) of a synonym of changes – and block is the first word, not counting an indefinite article, in the BRB entry for the singular of the answer.

11a Into Panama sailed East African (5)
A lurker (into) found in two words in the clue.

15a It’s far from dull as Margaret’s parent (6-2-5)
Heaven only knows where our setter got this from, but I ‘stumbled’ across it in Wikipedia, perhaps there is a simpler answer – one of our two parents, OF instead of the possessive S, and the translation of the old Persian word from which Margaret is derived.

26a English and European in retreat flee together (5)
The single letter for English and cruciverbalists’ favourite European, because it is one with only four letters, all reversed (in retreat).

27a Secreted chemical: call to inject extra rejected (9)
A five letter synonym of call (electronically) containing (to inject) a synonym of extra that has been reversed (rejected).

29a Dark tassels twisted around first of ropes (8)
An anagram (twisted) of TASSELS containing (around) the first letter of Ropes.

Down

1d Beef gone, sheep beginning to increase (8)
A synonym of gone, a type of sheep, and the first letter (beginning to) of Increase.

3d God has a revolutionary style (7)
A (Greek) god, A from the clue, and, probably, our favourite revolutionary.

7d Country — nation imbued with Aboriginal light originally (9)
A (European) nation containing (imbued with) the initial letters (originally) of Aboriginal and Light.

14d Deceptive opus, a cod TV programme (8)
It would appear that I am leading a very sheltered life – an anagram (deceptive) of OPUS, A COD – involving this group? And, the answer is in the BRB.

17d Concerns pinning article down (8)
A synonym of concerns containing (pinning) a definite article.

19d Ineffective thing gone awry, resentment (7)
A three letter synonym for ineffective thing and an anagram (awry) of GONE.

20d Wallop opening oven (7)
A three letter synonym of wallop (as in corporal punishment?) and an opening (into a room?) – did anyone try looking for a triple definition?

25d Others take a break (4)
And, after all that, we have a straightforward double definition to finish.

Part 1 of Sir Henry Wood’s Fantasia on British Sea Songs from the Last Night of The Proms – 2012.  The improvisation of the lead violinist at 5:00 is very entertaining. A pity about the idiot with the antique ‘bulb horn’:

The Crossword Club is now Open, and I will ‘see’ you again tomorrow.


The Quick Crossword pun:

SOUTHPAW + CIVIC = SOUTH PACIFIC


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76 comments on “DT 29748 (Hints)
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  1. 8d and 19d were my bung-ins. I hadn’t heard of them before, but guessed from the checking letters, then had to google them. Otherwise all very straightforward. Thank you setter and Senf.

        1. Welcome to the blog John

          They are all in Chambers. if you don’t accept that English is an ever-changing ever-developing language you will find crossword solving becomes increasingly difficult – what price “pants” as an anagram indicator?

            1. Dare I suggest that there is your problem. The latest ‘paper’ version of Chambers is the Revised 13th Edition published in 2014. There is also an ‘on-line’ version which is updated and, presumably, is ‘fair game’ for crossword setters.

              As BD said above all three words are in the current edition of Chambers.

  2. Once again, I was distracted by watching the Olympics but I think this was about a 2* for difficulty and definitely a 4* for enjoyment. I liked 8d, a word I remember being used in my childhood and 6d, 3d and 27a. COTD, however, was 15a with its clever play on a name. Thanks to Senf for the hints and to the compiler.

    1. Welcome to the blog

      28a – two informal terms for female relatives combine to produce ‘tomorrow’
      21d is a double definition clue
      There isn’t a 11d and Senf has hinted 11d ??

      1. Strangely, those were the two that eluded me too, so thanks for your help. I use neither of the terms for female relatives – don’t like them!* Fortunately, not stuck on the M25 although I live near junction 24.
        * the terms, not the relatives

    2. I started with a flourish putting “xxxxxxxx” in for 1a feeling smug and xxxxxxxxx. What a pity I had to remove it for the correct answer!
      The rest was a gentle solve with 17d giving me a problem because I never thought of the correct down.
      I hope the M5 has cleared by the time I join it tomorrow!

  3. Largely straightforward but with a couple of head scratchers. Like Jonners 15a was a bung in & I also needed to confirm 8d, not a word I’ve come across before. Otherwise a brisk solve with 17d my last in & one of my ticks alongside 27&28a plus 3&20d in what was a pretty enjoyable puzzle.
    Thanks to the setter & the Saturday super sub.

  4. A gentle end to a very pleasant week of puzzles that were within my purview.
    Having said that the bottom left held me up for a bit esp 28a not being a language I am too familiar with.
    Which reminds me of the old joke
    What do you call a man who speaks 3 languages – Trilingual
    What do you call a man who speaks 2 languages – Bilingual
    What do you call a man who speaks 1 language – English
    Thx to all
    **/***

    1. But to be fair, many of us learnt a foreign language in high school, and kids still do. In our school all girls learnt French and the boys had German. My limited knowledge of French came in very handy on a trip to Paris years ago, where I discovered the French were very helpful to anyone trying to converse with them. Certainly got us to the front of the queue at train stations.

      1. I learned basic French at school but was never very good at it. However, some words stuck in the memory. I hadn’t thought about the French language since leaving school but, on our first trip to Brittany, I saw a cow. Immediately, “la vache” came into my head!

        We visited Brittany every year for about ten years. I learned far more of the language whilst there than I ever did in school.

  5. A very pleasant interlude in what has become a very damp Shropshire morning. Just tricky enough in places to make it more interesting, and some tidy anagrams to start he grid off. 8d was my last entry, with 1a and 27a my favourites.

    Many thanks to our setter and to Senf for occupying the blogging chair.

  6. I have finished this but although I have an answer for 5a, cannot see the block. I don’t have a BRB to check and googling didn’t help. Oh well, it’s not as if I ever send them in. 28a took a bit of teasing out but the rest was pretty straightford although hadn’t heard of 8d before. Thanks to the setter and to Senf for standing in at short notice.

  7. Comfortably difficult with some good clues. My favourite today is 1d.

    Thanks to Senf for his overtime and to the setter.

  8. 15a was a ‘guess and look up’ and I was grateful for the checkers where 14d was concerned – what a frightful word!
    Fairly accessible Saturday puzzle for which thanks to our setter and most definitely to Senf for stepping into the breach once more to bring us the hints. Might be humming the sailors’ hornpipe for a while now……….

  9. That was a good way to end the cross wording week. Very enjoyable with plenty of good clues to stimulate the grey matter. I did not know the word at 5a but it could be nothing else. I nearly made a comment about 19d but remembered just in time that it would give the answer away. My COTD is 27a.

    Many thanks to the setter for the entertainment. Thanks, also, to Senf for the hints and for stepping in once more.

  10. Finished in ** time, my only clue marked for further attention was 8d. I only know this word with an ‘ig’ on the end. (Hoping for Battenburg if I get sent to the naughty step for that).

    Sorry, I was mistaken, I marked 15a too, for the “Margaret”. I’ll never watch Last of the Summer Wine in the same light again. Presumably the setter knows someone of that name.

    Many thanks to said setter and Senf for standing in, or sitting down.

    1. As a Margaret ( all we Angus girls are Margaret something, very inconvenient throughout my life) I am familiar with the connection!

      1. By Angus do you mean Scots? I know three Scots Margarets, never thought about it, just thought it was coincidence.

  11. Great crossword, I staggered home unaided with 28a and 21d the last ones in.

    For inexplicable reasons we started watching the women’s marathon last night and then we felt we had to stay up to the very end. Thus, a very late night here; we went to bed at about 1:30am.
    YAWN

    Today’s crossword soundtrack: Crosby, Stills, Nash, & Young – 4 Way Street

    Thanks to the setter and Senf The Substitute.

    1. My favourite version of Southern Man T.
      I watched Classic Albums: Aja on Sky Arts last night for the umpteenth time. Well worth catching if you’ve not seen it.

  12. 2/4. Generally ok but a couple held me up for a while. 28a and 5a, the latter being a stretch for me. I shall look in the BRB when I get a chance. 17d was my favourite. Thanks to the setter and Senf. We had about 5 hours of rain overnight so hopefully we’ll get back to normal soon.

    1. Very entertaining SPP which I completed pre work over a couple of cups of tea.
      I had to check the Margeret connection in 15a, and the new word in 8d but that couldn’t have been more sympathetically clued.
      I’ve singled out 26&27a plus 1&17d as worthy medal contenders.
      2/4*
      Many thanks to the setter and to Senf, who seems less a sub and more an alternate Saturday hunter!

  13. I am sorry you have had to burn the midnight oil yet again Senf. We are so fortunate to have you ready to leap into the breach. A very nice crossword with just enough head scratching – as a non-scientist I was proud of myself for getting 18a, I thought 26a, 28a and 6d were very good clues. Steve – my greenhouse visitor is definitely a frog as he is now hopping about, still in with the tomatoes although there are no greenfly in sight.I am still reluctant to take MP’s advice and kiss him though I could do with a prince in my life (not a singing one). What is he eating? Should I try and catch flies for him or would he not eat them dead? I am so ignorant. Many thanks to the setter and Senf and to all setters and hinters this week.

    1. Thanks, but no midnight oil involved – solving starts at 6:00pm my time and I sincerely hope that the blog is completed and scheduled quite a while before midnight.

      Of course, as it’s a SPP, I am assisted by only needing to solve half of the clues to complete the blog! :wink:

    2. We had a Common Frog living in our garden for a few years Daisy. Apparently they live in water and lay eggs in Spring but hang out in any damp area of vegetation for much of the year. He/she would occasionally frighten me to death by leaping out from behind a plant or the compost bin but most of the time was invisible. The only nearby source of water is a small pond in my neighbours’ garden or Letcombe Brook a mile or so away. They eat invertebrates etc and look after themselves. Be careful if you’re using a garden fork though.

  14. When such a word as 14d forces itself into the language, it just goes to show how rich, flexible, and availing the language can be, though it’s not a word I’ll ever use in my lifetime. ‘Needs must’, I guess. I enjoyed most of this one, with 19d, 17d, and 3d taking the honours. Thanks to Senf for stepping in once again, and thanks to our setter for a rather strange puzzle. *** / ***

    After last weekend’s blazing heat, this week has offered chilling wetness, and my body has rebelled most ingloriously. When temperatures dip into the 60s (F) in August in Charleston, there’s something haywire here.

    1. One of the attractions of Arizona for me was the effect the dry heat minimising Arthur’s effects. That and the Grand Canyon of course.
      The commentator said one of the US equestrian team had a summer home in NC & a winter one in SC (they didn’t say where). Is there that much of a difference Robert?

      1. Only if the summer home is up in the NC mountains, in the western part of NC; otherwise, not much difference. But these days, who knows? When my arthritis began taking its toll on me, I spent some time in Arizona one spring, and it made some difference.

        1. Robert, are you in a ganga aka cannabis friendly state? I can recommend ganga grease, it really helps with the pain. My biggest problem is in my hands and feet, though my back also niggles as well. I think they call it cannabis cream.

  15. 0.5*/4*. I found this very light and very enjoyable, apart from 14d which is an absolutely ghastly portmanteau word that I have never come across before and don’t want to ever again. My podium comprises 15a, 27a & 28a.

    The short quirky clues made me think this might be the handiwork of N Y Doorknob.

    Many thanks to the setter and to super-sub Senf.

    1. RD – I am inclined to agree with you that this is the work of N Y Doorknob but I didn’t want to be the first one to ‘stick my neck out.’

  16. Hi all, thought i would post for the first time as have been following the blog for about 6 months but I usually do the puzzle in the evenings and it seems everyone has pretty much posted by then. I found time to do it earlier today so have joined in. I found today’s pretty straightforward and my COTD was 18A,

    1. Welcome to the blog from me Pickster
      Many of us return to the blog of an evening so your opinion would still be welcomed and attract comment!

    2. Welcome to the blog. As a truly worldwide community, UK evening time occurs at different times of the day so there is always a chance that a comment will get a response.

      1. Cool, I am in the UK and I believe from his previous posts that I am in the same neck of the woods as Manders.

        1. Hi Pickster – I’m in North Norfolk but I’m a she not a he! I often read the blog the following morning to see what the latecomers have to say as there are usually some interesting comments. I think this is a fantastic site which has helped me enormously and very very occasionally I finish the Toughie – more often though I get half a dozen and give up.

    3. Welcome from me as well, Pickster. It doesn’t matter when you post – someone, somewhere will be looking at the blog. Looking forward to more comments from you. :good:

    4. Don’t worry about the timing. I am 5 hours behind the UK so many have the crossword done and dusted before I even look at it.

  17. We strolled through this with no real hold-ups. Favourite was 27a although we had the wrong extra in for a start until the penny dropped. Thanks to the setter and Senf.

  18. Pretty straightforward for an SPP I thought (though not quite the 0.5 of RD above). Had to check 5a & 27a but other than that no real problems.
    Today as in the Olympics, 11a takes gold, 7d getting a silver.
    Thank you Mysteron & Supersub for the hints.

  19. Found this Saturday puzzle tricky especially in the SW. Would have to say 2.5*/*** for my rating.
    Clues I liked though include 15a, 23a, 27a & 2d
    New word for me in 8d

    Thanks to setter and Senf

  20. Suspect that this is a doorknob crossword, another setter whose wavelength I cannot find. I got off to a good start, but couldn’t finish without several hints. I have never heard of 8d, 14d, and cannot fathom 5a and blocks, despite the hint. I have a nice 15a necklace, and would not say it is far from dull. While not completely flat, it is certainly not shiny. More of a soft lustre. Thanks to setter and Senf, for stepping into the breach again.

  21. I do hope all regular contributors have a look at the 600th Big Dave Not The Sat Prize Puzzle today & post a comment. The grid has 21 different setters contributing clues to mark the occasion & is a fun solve with a Nina. What a great site this……

    1. Thanks for the alert, Huntsman. I had a look, then tried the solve. Needed lots of help to finish. Still, very enjoyable.

  22. I found this very straightforward, though didn’t know 5a. I also had never heard of 14d and heartily endorse RD’s description of the word. I did use e-help for 18a, as soon as I saw “compound” knew it was out of my league. I liked lots, 27a, 6d and 3d among others, fave is 15a.
    Thanks to our setter for the fun, and great appreciation to Senf for stepping in once again.

    1. Welcome to the blog.

      The BRB is The Big Red Book an informal name for Chambers Dictionary – the primary dictionary used by crossword setters and editors – so called because of its red covers.

    2. Welcome, Lostinglos. Hope to see many more posts from you. Senf has answered your query but, if you want more info, look at the FAQ section. Just click on the link at the top.

  23. Having spent 9 hours on the road between Nottingham and the Roseland Peninsula and needing a few drinks upon arrival I only did this today. Main problem was 27a but enjoyed otherwise. Thanks setter and Senf.

  24. Well I made heavy weather of this one. Needed some of Senf’s excellent hints to finish. Definitely not on this setter’s wavelength.
    Mind you, I was juggling a few things yesterday…..trying to book a short break in 2 towns jand wrestling with M&S customer services…a very long story there which I suspect will continue. All I wanted to do was tell them that they sent me extra stuff that I had not ordered, nor had they charged me for and that I had returned it all……they are still, 2 weeks and many emails on, talking about refunds (to which I am not entitled, except they seem to think I am.)
    However, have booked the break, so looking forward to September!
    Thanks to the setter and to Senf.

  25. Have only just got around to solving this enjoyable puzzle as I was coincidentally away staying with family so that we could all go to Chichester Festival Theatre to see an excellent and nostalgic (with all those songs) production of the Quickie pun. Any comment I would make now on this Prize enigma has I think been made by someone above so I will merely belatedly thank Mysteron (? N Y Doorknob) and Senf for once again “being there” for us.

  26. Enjoyable crossword – Only just finished !, 17d had me foxed for ages. Sometimes I think the meaning of words are pushed a bit too far. Difficult giving examples without giving the answers away. Favourite clue 27a. Interesting comments today. Cheers

  27. SE corner was difficult and needed anagram solver to find 2 words not normally in my diction and 14d not even in my dictionary! Got there in the end. Presume anyone who scores this 0,5 difficulty normally does the Times or Guardian crossword! ☹️

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