DT 29755 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29755

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29755

Hints and tips by Falcon

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

Greetings from Ottawa, where we have enjoyed a couple of clear sunny days in the mid-20s C following a sweltering spell of days with temperatures in the very high 20s. However, temperatures are forecast to move up again reaching the low 30s by next weekend.

I sometimes feel that Campbell operates somewhat like a pool hustler. He gives us enough early successes to get us hooked and then ups the ante making us work hard to finish. Today, he serves up a good mix of clue types — perhaps throwing a little extra into the mix for the charade lovers among us.

In the hints below, underlining identifies precise definitions and cryptic definitions, and indicators are italicized. The answers will be revealed by clicking on the ANSWER buttons.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought of the puzzle.

Across

1a   Uncle manipulated person with no money, close to despair (10)
PAWNBROKER — line up a manipulated person, an adjective denoting having no money and the closing letter of despaiR

6a   Father and son, second to qualify (4)
PASS — another term for your old man followed by the abbreviations for son and second

10a   Exemplary Medical Officer was first to be retired (5)
MODEL — the abbreviation for the military doctor identified in the clue and the reversal (to be retired) of a verb meaning to have been in first place in a competition

11a   Best possible players in drama meet cast (5,4)
DREAM TEAM — an anagram (cast) of DRAMA MEET

12a   Write article about a miserable place in California (8)
PASADENA — start with a denominal verb meaning to write and an indefinite article; then wrap these around the A from the clue and an adjective meaning miserable or unhappy; obscure fact for today: a denominal verb is an example of anthimeria

13a   Crest of game bird, part shed (5)
RIDGE — a game bird (perched in pear tree, perhaps) literally sheds ‘part’

15a   Leave a lecturer defending prohibition (7)
ABANDON — the A from the clue and a university lecturer protect both flanks of another word for prohibition

17a   Last of acts tucking into casserole in popular place (7)
HOTSPOT — the last letter of actS inserted into a casserole of chopped meat and vegetables

19a   A mile in pilot ship (7)
STEAMER — the A from the clue and the abbreviation for mile in a verb meaning to pilot or guide

21a   Stage right: Oscar to play guitar (7)
ROSTRUM — a charade of R(ight), the letter represented by Oscar in the NATO phonetic alphabet and a verb meaning to play the guitar

22a   Endless wretchedness for Scrooge, say (5)
MISER — a word meaning wretchedness or unhappiness losing it final letter

24a   Anxious about supplying sweets (8)
DESSERTS — a reversal (about) of anxious or under pressure

27a   I balanced precariously to get ribbon (5,4)
ALICE BAND — an anagram (precariously) of the first two words in the clue; I did question whether the answer is a ribbon—however, the second definition in the BRB certainly seems broad enough to encompass it

28a   A daughter with American university grant (5)
ADMIT — the A from the clue, D(aughter) and a world-renowned engineering school in Cambridge, Mass.

29a   Advantage of golf club bar opening (4)
EDGE — a high-lofted golf club missing its opening letter

30a   What youth might want? Ferocious setter and endless belief! (6,4)
STREET CRED — an anagram (ferocious) of SETTER and a belief missing its ending letter

Down

1d   Young dog biting male’s shoe (4)
PUMP — a young dog not only bites but swallows M(ale)

2d   On the alert, wife thought, on vigil (4,5)
WIDE AWAKE — link together W(ife), a thought, image, notion or concept formed by the mind, and a vigil beside a corpse

3d   Tropical tree that may produce most of resin (5)
BALSA — a pleasant-smelling resin obtained from various trees and plants missing its final letter produces a tropical tree known for its very lightweight wood beloved by model aircraft builders

4d   Affectionate form of address from elderly head (3,4)
OLD BEAN — another word for elderly and a slang term for the head

5d   See why a comic’s rubbish (7)
EYE WASH — an anagram (comic) of the first two three words in the clue

7d   Winning answer had to involve European (5)
AHEAD — join together A(nswer) and HAD from the clue; then insert E(uropean) into the result

8d   Season a little with a culinary herb, they say (10)
SUMMERTIME — the answer sounds like (they say) a charade of another word for a little, the A from the clue, and a culinary herb (the musical accompaniment to parsley, sage and rosemary)

9d   Former professor maybe rues time wasted (8)
EMERITUS — an anagram (wasted) of RUES TIME

14d   Hacker’s threat? Children’s author admits bitter upset (10)
RANSOMWARE — insert the reversal (upset) of a word meaning bitter (used, perhaps, in relation to a winter wind) into the name of an award-winning English children’s author

16d   Scottish town engineering firm used (8)
DUMFRIES — an anagram (engineering) of the final two words in the clue

18d   Separate row that includes Mike, one not doing a full day’s work (4-5)
PART-TIMER — start with a verb meaning to separate (for instance, the hair on one side of one’s head from that on the other); to that, append a row (of seats in a stadium, perhaps) containing the letter represented Mike in the NATO phonetic alphabet

20d   Beaming with joy, speak wildly about aid that’s been raised (7)
RADIANT — a word meaning to speak wildly enveloping a reversal of AID (as Miffypops would say, kindly gifted by the setter)

21d   Remainder live across Uruguay’s capital (7)
RESIDUE — to live or have one’s home in a particular place containing the initial letter (capital) of Uruguay; methinks the setter is killing us with kindness here—knowing that the IVR code for Uruguay is U, I initially attempted to parse the clue with capital as the definition

23d   Broadcasting, omitting old style of jazz (5)
SWING — a term for broadcasting or scattering seed missing O(ld)

25d   Former deed, precise (5)
EXACT — the usual former significant other and a deed or feat

26d   Briefly examine small item of jewellery (4)
STUD — remove the final letter from a word meaning examine closely or think about carefully

My podium finishers are 1a, 12a and 2d with the gold going to 12a.


Quickie Pun (Top Row): WRAP + SEW + DEE = RHAPSODY

Quickie Pun (Centre): CONK + WHIST + ADORE = CONQUISTADOR

Quickie Pun (Bottom Row) : RAW + TIE + EARN = WROUGHT IRON


100 comments on “DT 29755
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  1. A great start to the week with an unaided solve. I thought this was a most enjoyable puzzle with many good clues. Particular favourites are 1a, 17a, 7d and 18d. My COTD was 2d.

    Many thanks to Campbell for the enjoyment. Thanks also to Falcon for the hints.

  2. Mostly light and enjoyable.
    Thought 14d a strange clue as, unless I’m missing something, it doesn’t seem particularly cryptic. I had to check the author too. That aside I liked lots, but I’ve chosen 11&30a plus 8d for podium places.
    1.5/3.5*
    Many thanks to Campbell and Falcon.

      1. Thanks for you feedback Falcon, I understood the wordplay and am very happy to concede that it is cryptic and as in 99.5% of cases the setter is correct. I will therefore up my enjoyment rating to 4* and withdraw my comment!

      1. Alan
        It’s a children’s author wrapped around (admits) a reversal (upset) of a three letter synonym for bitter.

  3. This was a really enjoyable puzzle with a great variety of clues, some of them straightforward and some more challenging (**/*****). The best part was that it provided some wit and humour and was a piece of light relief after the more challenging puzzles over the last 5 days. Variety is indeed the spice of life. I liked the complex of homophones in 8d, which was my COTD but the nicely disguised geographical anagram at 16d and the one involving the childrens’ author at 14d are also worth a mention. Many thanks to Falcon for the hints and to Campbell for a delight of a puzzle.

  4. A nice start to the crossword week. Enjoyed this – only slight hold up was 14d as my knowledge of children’s authors is a bit patchy – couldn’t get the likes of Enid Blyton and JK Rowling out of my mind. Ridiculous as I have all his books upstairs. **/*** so thanks to the setter and Falcon.

  5. A very enjoyable solve. Only 14 down held me up as I could think of neither the children’s author nor the reverse of bitter. Funny how some down clues only reveal themselves when written out horizontally. Thanks to both Falcon and Campbell
    Jane Shilling has this to say in her column in today’s DT

    English may be an international lingua franca, but the contribution of “British English” to the linguistic salmagundi that is “global English” is dwindling fast. A report from the Global Language Monitor, a Texas-based company that tracks trends in language, claims the UK currently contributes only 10 per cent of new words to the fast-growing vocabulary of global English, where a neologism is spawned every 90-odd minutes.

    In 2018, the Oxford English Dictionary gave a (strangely precise) estimate of 171,146 words currently in use in the (British) English language. Of these, Shakespeare alone contributed some 1,700, so perhaps we need not fret too anxiously about such fly-by-night coinages as “timepass” (meaning the unproductive use of time). You could grumble that a perfectly good word already exists, in “pastime”. Or you could embrace the idea that neologisms, however unlovely (“zhuzh” is my current top bête noir) are the sign of a living language in a constant, fascinating state of evolution. Which is undoubtedly better than the alternative

  6. I found this quite gentle this morning. */*** I read all of 14d books as a child so had no difficulty with that one. No particular favourite. Thanks to all.

    1. And so there is. I looked for a third one and missed it. Possibly because it begins with a word in the middle right hand side rather than on the left hand edge of the grid

    2. I was initially not able to solve 15a in the Quickie by reason of both not knowing the British slang for nose as well as misunderstanding the construction of the clue. Strangely though, I did recognize the possibility of a pun were the answer to be the word it turns out to be. However, I couldn’t justify it and made a mental note (big, big, mistake at silly o’clock in the wee hours of the morning) to come back to it later. Thus Campbell succeeds in slipping another third pun past me.

  7. I thought maybe this wasn’t Campbell on the basis that I couldn’t see the 2nd Quickie pun no matter how I said it. A wee bit trickier than the last couple of weeks & a nice puzzle to kick the week off with. No real favourites but solidly clued throughout & very enjoyable. I see I didn’t quite parse 14d as intended as I just took bitter upset as war.
    Thanks to Campbell & Falcon.
    Ps I rather enjoyed the 669 Cryptic today & learnt a couple of new things in the process.

  8. Lovely start to the week. My favourite clue was 14d as I remember reading all of his books as a child, many of which were handwriting prizes for my father. Thanks to today’s setter amd Falcon.

  9. Sound start to the week, nice to see uncle back, a wide range of clues with the outstanding 14d my favourite- not out of place in a toughie, liked 24a, my D’oh moment ,though think I have seen it before.
    Going for a **/****.
    Thanks to our setter and Falcon.

  10. Such a terrific puzzle – solved unaided. I do look forward to a Campbell Monday.
    Three delicious Quickie puns too.

    Now to slouch on the sofa and watch the denouement of what is turning out to be a thrilling Test Match

    Thanks to Campbell and Falcon.

  11. All done in ** time, except for 14d. I have read all the comments above and am none the . . .Oh, hang one, the answer in the hints above is spelled wrongly.

    Thanks to the setter and Falcon.

        1. Triple Oops!

          Maybe this experience will spur me into calling the ophthalmologist about my appointment (squeaky wheel gets the grease). I was referred by my optometrist 8 months ago and have yet to even be given a date for an appointment. Her rationale when referring me was that although I didn’t need surgery at the time, I might by the time I got an appointment (which would be a least a year in the future). Eye surgery was virtually cancelled during the height of the pandemic resulting in a huge backlog of cases.

  12. Took me a little time to get into this **/*** puzzle but once cross checkers came into play it got progressively easier as is so often the case. Didn’t quite understand the first half of 8d so thanks for the explanation Falcon – now I see it. My COTD was 24a. Thanks to Campbell if it was he.

  13. Whizzed through then came to a shuddering halt at last one, 14d.
    Racked my brains for *** plus time, then constructed a word I did not know.
    Bingo!
    Many thanks to Campbell for the enjoyable mind-stretching exercise and to Falcon.

  14. Nicely challenging with slight hiccup in SW mainly as I needed prompt with 14d due to my distinct lack of techie capability. Doubtless Nancy Mitford would have had something to say about 24a clue and solution! My Favs were 12a and 8d once my bung-in had been parsed for me. Thank you Campbell and Falcon.

        1. I hadn’t read Comment 7 and in fact hadn’t even realised there was a bottom row pun which I now see but a third baffles me!

      1. Campbell always puts a second quickie pun across the bottom line of the grid Angelov. Today he has given a third three word pun beginning with the word conk

  15. A very enjoyable romp through crosswordland this morning courtesy of our triple punner. No particular favourite although 14d came close.

    My thanks to Campbell and Falcon.

  16. As usual a pleasant start to the week. Agree with Falcon’s assessment of Campbell’s puzzles, lead-in is smooth & fairly gentle then the sting in ths tail. Like others 14d that was the “wall” for me and took me just into *** time. Very fair cluing and satisfying so **** fun factor.
    14d gets my COTD
    Thank you Campbell & Falcon. (Think the hint for 5d should read “the first three words of the clue”)

          1. No apologies needed. I’m so very grateful that you take the time to write all these hints. They, and everyone’s comments, greatly enhance my solving enjoyment.

  17. Solved alone and unaided but still do not understand the parsing of 8d despite Falcon’s hint. There is no A in the answer???

    Thanks to Campbell and to Falcon.

    1. I think it is a sounds like. In this word the er is pronounced as a can be pronounced. Summ = some, Er = a. I may be wrong.

      1. Aha, I see it now . The A in the hint confused me as well but as you say it’s the way you pronounce the first six letter word. I’d worked it out differently as a season and a herb, didn’t even think about the A.

    2. Clue probably needs slight correction. The second ( of three) homophones is “a” which sounds a bit like “er”.

      1. After all the errors that have been pointed out today, I’m a bit hesitant to attempt to justify a hint. However, I do think that “the answer [SUMMERTIME] sounds like (they say) a charade of another word for a little [SOME], the A from the clue [A], and a culinary herb [THYME]” is accurate.

        ‘Summer’ pronounced in a non-rhotic British accent (not at all the way I pronounce it) sounds like SUMMAH.

  18. Lovely puzzle for my summer holiday. No real hold ups. 29a last in once I had 14d. I’m no computer wiz but once I knew there was no virus in it all became plain. Other one which took me longer than it should was 28a as I was looking for a university grant. 11 21s and 14d were favourites. Thanks Campbell and Falcon. I did need to check the parsing of 10a.

  19. Lovely Campbell puzzle. Rewarding, enjoyable, wry and amusing. Plus ca change! Was heading for a comfortable 1* completion until utterly thrown by 14d, which took as long as the rest of the entire puzzle.

    HMs to 24a, 28a, 29a, 30a, 2d and 23d; COTD the outstanding 1a – superb surface read, quite brilliant.

    2* / 4*

    Many thanks indeed to Campbell, and to Falcon for the review.

  20. Oh – and for those who have access to it, I heartily recommend the online-only prize cryptic crossword (No. 669) – would not be out of place as a Monday or Tuesday backpager. Very enjoyable and nothing esoteric.

    1. Thanks, I have it printed and hope to look at it later. I always look forward to Mondays, with its extra options for both for cryptic and quickie.

        1. Yes, nice clue. However, as I pointed out to Jepi below, I doubt it is intended in any way to be in my honour. Campbell (Allan Scott) sets puzzles in the Financial Times under the pseudonym Falcon — a name he has told us on this blog is inspired by Antarctic explorer Robert Falcon Scott.

  21. I agree with Falcon and LROK that at first we thought a nice doddle but then we came to a grinding halt halfway through. 14d completely eluded us ( George was sure that the ‘bitter’ was ale) and I had to check the hints, I still don’t know what the word means. I just hope my antivirus is dealing with it. I marked 13, 19and 21a and 16 and 21d as very neat clues and liked the three puns. It is pouring with rain here and my little frog Prince 🐸 seems to have abandoned me😟. Many thanks to setter and Falcon.

    1. Ransomware is a type of malware from cryptovirology that threatens to publish the victim’s personal data or perpetually block access to it unless a ransom is paid. While some simple ransomware may lock the system so that it is not difficult for a knowledgeable person to reverse, more advanced malware uses a technique called cryptoviral extortion. It encrypts the victim’s files, making them inaccessible, and demands a ransom payment to decrypt them.[1][2][3][4] In a properly implemented cryptoviral extortion attack, recovering the files without the decryption key is an intractable problem – and difficult to trace digital currencies such as paysafecard or Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are used for the ransoms, making tracing and prosecuting the perpetrators difficult.

      Ransomware attacks are typically carried out using a Trojan disguised as a legitimate file that the user is tricked into downloading or opening when it arrives as an email attachment. However, one high-profile example, the WannaCry worm, traveled automatically between computers without user interaction.[5]

  22. When 14d finally dawned upon me (it was my LOI), I literally shouted out to my partner Jimmy, “I GOT IT!” It’s not even a term I would have known a few months ago, I am quick to admit, but recent events in the world of computers have made me such a smart person (ha ha). Lots to like in this tricky Campbell today, with 14d, 20a, and 7d winning top marks. Thanks to Falcon and Campbell. **/****

    I really enjoyed finishing the online Cryptic 669, and I recommend it.

    1. The Monday on-line “Win Prizes” Cryptic is always a quality puzzle … I wonder if the setter is our esteemed editor?

      1. I think our ‘esteemed editor’ did comment recently in the Puzzles newsletter that the on-line prize cryptic is always set by our own ‘Mr Monday’ aka Campbell. Busy man!

        1. Well then it’s a double “Thank You” to Campbell for today’s cryptics.

          Thanks also to Falcon (who coincidentally(?) gets a mention in Cryptic 669)

          1. I’ll have to check that cross reference you mention. However, might it be a reference to Campbell himself who sets puzzles under the pseudonym Falcon in the Financial Times.

  23. A gentle jog with our setter today apart from that third Quickie pun which took me quite a while to spot – silly, but it just wasn’t where I expected to see it. Creature of habit, I’m afraid.
    30a made me laugh but top marks go to the Quickie puns – amazes me how Campbell continues to dream them up!

    Thanks to Campbell for the entertainment and to Falcon for the review.

  24. I agree with you Falcon re Campbell the hustler! I got a few easy wins and then was scratching my head over the last few despite having lots of checkers.
    I’m clearly alone as everyone else has welcomed back Uncle but I have never heard of 1a as a synonym for uncle and it’s not in my thesaurus. What’s the story there?
    One other thing needing explanation for me- on 30a if Cred is Creed then the belief isn’t endless but missing a middle? Parsing help please!
    Finally thanks for anthimeria, Falcon. A new word for me! I love these grammatical terms (not that they get much use in my day to day life) and makes me think of old English and Latin lessons. Now remind me, what do you Call that thing where you use an object to mean the thing it symbolises eg “Crown” for royalty?
    Oh, COTD for me 8d, a real groan-er when the penny dropped! And also 24a because I saw a sign at a cafe last week that made me smile as it said ““Dxxxxxxs” is just “sxxxxxxd” backwards”.
    Thanks all!

    1. Hi Boatlady
      Credo = belief
      Synedoche is where a part is used to describe the whole eg crown = royalty or set of wheels = car

      1. Or maybe synecdoche.

        [Oh, how satisfying to be pointing out a typo or error rather than having my own brought to my attention!]

        I think your second example of “wheels” representing “car” is a valid example of a synecdoche (a figure of speech in which a part is made to represent the whole or vice versa).

        However, your first example of “crown” representing “royalty” may be better characterized as a metonym (a word, name, or expression used as a substitute for something else with which it is closely associated).

        1. Or maybe metonymy
          But you are absolutely right
          Thanks again, Falcon, for all your painstaking work on behalf of this little community

            1. Despite an extensive search, I was not able to find a definitive answer. I did learn that it is a Cockney expression dating back as far as the 17th century. (It is referred to as Cockney slang — but not specifically as rhyming slang). Some sources suggest (guess?) that it alludes to a pawnbroker being someone that one would turn to for (financial) assistance in a manner similar to a nephew or niece seeking help from a kindly uncle (of course, the pawnbroker has profit in mind). The term is used in North America as well but that is understandable as the expression is so old it could have been brought here by the earliest English colonists.

  25. Found this a tad harder than most Monday puzzles. ***/*** for me today.
    No real favourites today but I liked 1d, 14d & 24a

    Thanks to Campbell and Falcon

  26. Great Monday workout after a couple of somewhat challenging ‘heascratchers’ over the weekend.
    I’d not seen 24A before…very good, and 14D also well-constructed!
    Thanks to Campbell for another great puzzle and to Falcon for the blog ‘n hints.
    Cheers!

  27. I agree with Falcon that Campbell leads me to believe it’s an easy Monday….. until I have a few left that need a bit more teasing out…. and then I can’t get the last one. For me that was 14d, so I turned to electronic help to complete. Thank you Campbell for a good challenge and Falcon for the hints. No particular favourites. I’ll have a go at the triple pun quickie now.

  28. Very ordinary puzzle with some dreadful clues such as 14d.
    Not a great start to the week.
    ***/**
    Thx for the hints

  29. Quite enjoyed, and very much agree with Falcon’s take re Campbell being a bit of a pool hustler. I’ve never played the game, but know what one is from numerous movies. Also knew what uncle means, again from the wonderful world of education via movies. I intensely dislike clues such as 12a, and the awful second word in 30a, but that’s just me. Thanks to Campbell for providing a relief from a week of over the top head scratchers. And don’t worry about the mistakes Falcon. Very few of us could or would want the responsibility of being the morning blogger.

  30. Great puzzle which was done and dusted well before Falcon put up his blog. I have been cutting down Forsythia and Philadelphus until now and created a couple of day’s visits to the tip.

    Don’t understand the fuss about 14d which is a fine clue.

    Thanks to Falcon and Campbell for the enjoyment.

  31. All very accessible and a great start to the week. **/****. A refreshing improvement on the drudgery of last week.
    By the way, a la Mustafa (27), by mistake I did the online prize crossword first. Also great fun.

  32. 0.5*/4*. Very late starting this but it didn’t hold me up for long, with a couple of clues in the SW corner holding me up slightly. Great fun though from start to finish with 1a my favoruite.

    Many thanks to Campbell and to Falcon.

  33. Well, wotta relief! This was great fun, though agree with Falcon’s hustler description. The only one I couldn’t solve was 14d, which is a disgrace when you consider how many times it’s been in the news recently! Lots to like, 27a reminded me of that Edwardian music-hall song “Alice Blue Gown”, growing up with an Edwardian father who loved to sing those songs brought back happy memories, but I’m going to give fave to 1a, very smooth and I knew it!
    Thanks to Campbell, and much appreciation to Falcon for unravelling a few.

  34. Nice start to the week😃**/*** 14d was a new word for me 😳 Favourites 1, 12, and 19 across 🤗 Thanks to Falcon and to Campbell

  35. I really enjoyed today’s puzzle. Whether it was because I didn’t know that uncle could mean something else but I completed the whole of the South East and South West quite quickly followed by the North West corner. Reluctantly, I looked up uncle in Bradford’s Crossword Solver’s Dictionary and hey ho it confirmed my suspicions. So I have completed today’s puzzle and learnt something new!

    Many thanks to Falcon (oh I don’t envy your role!) and to Campbell (though I missed the middle pun). Thank you for the entertainment it’s such a good feeling when one solves the cryptic with almost no help.

  36. My only did not know’s were that balsam is a resin and I always wondered where 12a was. Also had doubts about 27a but it just had to be. Any road up done, dusted and parsed so I’m happy. Thanks to Campbell and Falcon.

  37. Completed unaided except for 14d which I hThanks ad not heard of. I knew the author – I so much enjoyed these books that I possess one of them autographed by the author. Thanks to Campbell for an enjoyable puzzle and to Falcon for the hints, which I will now have to look at for the middle pun which I cannot find.

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