DT 29783 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29783

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29783

Hints and tips by Deep Threat

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Good morning from South Staffs, where the morning sun is peeping through the clouds.

For me, this was reasonably straightforward. Whether others find it so will depend to some extent on the GK elements falling within their comfort zone.

In the hints below, the definitions are underlined. The answers are hidden under the ANSWER buttons, so don’t click if you don’t want to see them.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.

Across

1a           PM claims love for country (8)
CAMEROON – The surname of a former Prime Minister, with the letter which looks like a love score at tennis inserted, to give us an African country.

5a           Bishop enters a lounge that’s brightly lit (6)
ABLAZE – A (from the clue) and another word for ‘lounge’, placed either side of the chess notation for a bishop.

9a           Payments to copyright holder in Italy rose unexpectedly (9)
ROYALTIES – Anagram (unexpectedly) of ITALY ROSE.

11a         American coach chasing very big award (5)
OSCAR – A clothing size which may be described as ‘very big’, followed by what the Americans call a railway coach or carriage.

While historic, Oscar 'firsts' are long overdue – The Daily Aztec

12a         Skilful Anderson oddly needs time to trap India’s opener (6)
ADROIT – Alternate letters (oddly) of AnDeRsOn, followed by the first letter of India and an abbreviation for Time.

13a         Largest threat to fruit crop? (8)
PLUMPEST – Divide the answer (4,4) and you get something which could attack your Victorias.

15a         Les and Tony rather agitated getting wind (5-8)
NORTH-EASTERLY – Anagram (agitated) of LES, TONY and RATHER.

18a         He designed spa resorts, showing stubborn nature (13)
PIGHEADEDNESS – Anagram (resorts) of HE DESIGNED SPA.

22a         Substantial account correct, yet having occasional omissions (8)
CONCRETE – Alternate letters of words two, three and four of the clue.

23a         Boris frantically pens article, it indicates pressure? (6)
ISOBAR – Anagram (frantically) of BORIS, wrapped round an indefinite article.

26a         Path out of brush to cross river (5)
TRAIL – The sort of brush a fox has, wrapped round River.

27a         Worried by honest person standing for election (9)
CANDIDATE – Another word for ‘honest’ or ‘open’, followed by another word for ‘worried’.

28a         Runs special editions of newspaper (6)
EXTRAS – Double definition, the first being runs in cricket which are not scored by the batsman (or do I have to say ‘batter’ these days?).

29a         Goes along with impression voiced following trick (8)
CONSENTS – A trick or chest followed by something which sounds like (voiced) an impression or feeling.

Down

1d           It’s the end for some home furnishings (8)
CURTAINS – Double definition: some rather dated slang for the end of life; or some soft furnishings.

2d           Irish county has right person heading council (5)
MAYOR – A county in the West of Ireland, followed by Right.

3d           Vivien, say, supports artist, one of Elizabeth’s favourites (7)
RALEIGH – The usual artist who is a member of the Royal Academy, followed by the surname of, among others, Vivien, who starred in Gone with the Wind. This gives us the surname of an Elizabethan seafarer and explorer.

4d           Poet about to flee pandemic (4)
OVID – To get this Roman poet, remove the Latin abbreviation for ‘about’ or ‘approximately’ from the short name of a virus with which we are all too familiar.

6d           Something baker’s made with yeast rose perhaps (7)
BLOOMER – Double definition: a type of loaf; or something which may be used to describe a rose or other flower.

Foods of England - Bloomer Loaf

7d           Classic Jaguar car goes under bridge (9)
ARCHETYPE – A feature of many bridges, followed by the model name (1-4) of a famous Jaguar car.

8d           Some bureaucrat arrested over document inaccuracies (6)
ERRATA – Hidden in reverse (over) in the clue.

10d         Councillor essentially avoids anxiety in retirement (8)
SOLITUDE – Remove the middle letters of counCIllor from a word for ‘anxiety’ or ‘concern’, to get a state of retirement from the company of others.

14d         Adult joke, one described by compere as sublime (8)
MAJESTIC – Put together an abbreviation for Adult and another word for a joke. A two-letter acronym for the host of an event is wrapped round the result.

16d         Sorry about dog maybe biting indefinite number attending function (9)
REPENTANT – Start with the Latin for ‘about’ or ‘concerning’, then add what a dog or cat may be, wrapped round an algebraic expression for any number and the shortened form of a trigonometric function.

17d         Republican appears regularly to visit pair of Americans, those seizing power (8)
USURPERS – An abbreviation for Republican and alternate letters of aPpEaRs are put together. Then two examples of a common abbreviation for ‘American’ are put together and wrapped round the result.

19d         Primate is partisan when speaking (7)
GORILLA – One of the great apes is also a homophone (when speaking) of a partisan or other irregular fighter.

RECUR Wild Animal Figure Toys (Gorilla) : Amazon.co.uk: Toys & Games

20d         Give notice a little word is misspelled (7)
DISMISS – Hidden in the clue.

21d         Blast staggering cheats (6)
SCATHE – Anagram (staggering) of CHEATS.

24d         Brother with beard displaying strength (5)
BRAWN – An abbreviation for BRother, followed by the beard on an ear of barley.

25d         Open University refusal to admit daughter (4)
UNDO – An abbreviation for University, followed by a word of refusal wrapped round an abbreviation for Daughter.


The Quick Crossword pun KNOW + THYME + TOULOUSE = NO TIME TO LOSE

That reminds of a joke from when our children were small:

Q: Why is it better to be caught short in France than in Cornwall?

A: Because there’s only one Looe in Cornwall, but Toulouse in France!

69 comments on “DT 29783
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  1. A very steady solve that took a little time to finish, eventually complete in **** time.

    I will admit that I have’t got a single idea about the parsing of 10d; it is a synonym for retirement (6 years now, where has the time gone?) but I cannot get anything more.

    The beard in 24d had to be dragged from my distant memory and I am certain that the homonym in 29a will be bitterly contested.

    I did think that we were in for a pangram, with J, X, Y & Z, but alas not. Was it just my imagination that there seemed to be an unusual number of anagrams?

    Many thanks to the compiler and DT.

  2. 2*/5*. What a lovely puzzle to finish the week – not tricky but a joy from start to finish with superb surfaces the icing on the cake.

    My page is littered with ticks, and 5a, 13a & 7d earned double ticks. The Quickie pun deserves a mention too, but the outstanding 12a with its perfect surface was my runaway favourite.

    Many thanks to Silvanus – I am no doubt that this is his handiwork – and thanks too to DT.

  3. A couple held me up this morning as did the parsing of 10d. I thought 29a was a bit odd. 1d was my favourite.

    Thanks to today’s setter and DT.

  4. I found this puzzle highly enjoyable (2*/5*), since it had everything I like, a few lovely anagrams, a couple of geographical clues, some GK clues that suited me and best of all the clues were well constructed. There was a challenging corner in th SW too. There were some amusing clues and I can’t pick a favourite between 7d, 1d and 13a because they are all good fun. Thanks to DT for the hints and to the compiller.

  5. On first pass I noticed how well the surfaces read and immediately thought “Silvanus”. A nice steady solve for me but I did need DT to explain 10d, my LOI.
    In a strong field my podium is 1,6&7d, with the topical and very cleverly constructed 12a running them close.
    2.5/4.5*
    Many thanks to the setter and DT for the top notch entertainment.

  6. Good backpager to finish the week: testing but not outlandish, all fairly clued including the one or two less general GK elements (which made me think this was from Giovanni, but I shall bow to RD’s greater success at playing “spot the setter”!). It helped that the two long across anagrams fell almost instantly, and I tackled the puzzle from the S to the N, and then from NW to NE.

    Some cracking clues including 12a, 22a (v clever), 14d and 17d (I do like a pointed answer …) but my COTD goes to 7d for the sublime surface reading and construction.

    2.5* / 3.5*

    Many thanks to the Setter, and to DT for the review.

  7. I thought another tough one at ***/*** and I couldn’t quite get into a rhythm on this one. I hadn’t heard of that word for an ear of barley in 24d so thanks DeepThreat. I also struggled to parse 10d for a while although the answer was fairly obvious. A tough week all in all. Thanks to the setter.

  8. I will piggyback RD’s comments at #2; a superb puzzle that has to be the handiwork of Silvanus. Being a cricket nut, 12a also gets my vote for COTD.

    Thanks to the aforementioned and DT.

  9. A very tough puzzle for me which took more time than usual to sort out. But as is usual for a Silvanus puzzle (for it is he) the solve was a delight throughout as each answer was teased from its shell like prison of a clue. After several calm, sun filled days the wind has got itself up this morning in St Mawes and we are overcast by cloud. It changes the light but everywhere here is still exquisitely beautiful. Thanks to Silvanus for his puzzles on Fridays and to Deep Threat for the review and the joke after the quickie pun. Play nicely children. I’ll see you all on Monday but I will be keeping an eye on your behaviour

  10. Nice puzzle for me…..but I have to admit to having to check on awl in 24d….the answer had to be what it was, but that bit of GK was unknown to me.
    Also needed help understanding 10d. Again it had to be what it was, but wasn’t sure about the definition…the BRB confirms, though, so something else to try to remember .

    Thanks to the setter and to DT.
    Picking the apples today…..that’s my weekend sorted.
    Didn’t make tomato relish after all, dried them in the oven and packed them in jars of olive oil…..much less work.

  11. Partly by a process of elimination, Zandio last week and one X (not four or none) this week, this delightful puzzle has to be by Silvanus, just right for the end to the (non-)work week – ***/*****.

    I did cause myself some problems in the SW by ‘writing in’ an (incorrect) answer to 22a without reading the clue properly.

    Candidates for favourite 12a, 1d, 7d, and 17d – and the winner is 12a.

    Thanks to Silvanus and DT.

  12. Surprised myself by finishing this after making heavy weather of the start. Needed help to parse 10d and unbelievably 4d too. Fav was 13a. Altogether worth the deliberation called for. Thank you Silvanus and DT.

  13. A proper old fashioned Friday puzzle for me with lots of head scratching.
    Last in was 10a which took a while to parse as did 16 and17d.
    Liked 13a, wanted to put elephant in originally before the checking letters arose!.
    Really enjoyed the solve and going for a ***/*****

  14. A good workout and generally fair but like others I couldn’t parse 10d. Now that it has been explained to me (thanks Deep Threat) it seems a tad convoluted and stretched….

  15. Hello again, yes I am indeed today’s compiler, many thanks as always to Deep Threat and to everyone who has commented already or will comment later.

    I’m very proud to say that, including Toughies, this puzzle marks my fiftieth crossword for the Telegraph, a milestone that may not sound that impressive, but it means a lot to me. May I wish everyone a good weekend.

    1. I reckon 50 is a pretty significant milestone and should be celebrated. Quality not necessarily quantity has to take precedence. Congratulations and many thanks for this and all your puzzles.

    2. You Silvanus always test my mind more than I should like. What fun I have being so challenged though! Thank you so much for the enjoyment your ingenuity gives us all. Ps I am not sure I have ever seen the word “ingenuity” as an answer if that is a temptation. I am however a relatively new member of this blog.

  16. Well thank you kindly, Silvanus, for including some unusual words (13a, 18a and wonderfully written clues. Completely misread what you wanted me to do in 22a but got there anyway. Thank goodness for DT’s explanations for 22a, 4, 10 and 16d.

  17. Very enjoyable. **/**** 16d was my last one in and even Deep Threat’s explanation is almost over my head. I wouldn’t have come up with the reasoning in a million years. Favourite 13a. Thanks to all.

  18. Super puzzle, perhaps slightly less difficult than the Friday norm, judging by my (just) *** time.
    Like others didn’t know the “beard” in 24d & took a little too long to see a couple of relatively obvious ones (eg 20d). Really enjoyed the diversion though **** fun factor.
    For its topicality and ingenuity 13d gets my COTD.
    Thank you Silvanus and DT for the review and the Bob Newhart clip.

  19. This lovely masterwork by Silvanus had everything I like in a cryptic, and I found it a delight from beginning to end. Hard to pick a favourite among so many, but 10d, 1d, 13a, & 4d head a long list of elites. The surfaces especially get a honorary 11a from me. Thanks to DT and Silvanus. **/*****

    Still struggling with the Toughie, but it’s been a great week for them.

  20. Terrific puzzle, with no knowledge of the Shaishunaga dynasty, or the Pandyan Empire, required thank goodness.

    As Robert says, it was a delight from A to Z – pronounced ‘zee’ in Robert’s honour (honor)!

    Today’s crossword soundtrack: Paul Weller – Wild Wood

    Thanks to Silvanus (congratulations!) and the ever reliable DT

  21. Found this a harder and much trickier than the usual puzzle for a Friday and was not really my cuppa. ****/** today I am afraid.
    Too many clues that were absolutley impossible to figure out the parsing, yet the answer had to be what it was.
    Candidates favourites 1a, 15a. 3d & 7d with winner 7d

    Thanks to setter (Silvanus) and DT

  22. I needed help for a couple but, on the whole, it was a most enjoyable solve with some head scratching required. Like others, I did like 12a but my COTD is 13a having had a late frost this year that put paid to said fruit. I was on pangram alert after solving 5a, 9a and 14d but it was not to be.

    Grateful thanks, Silvanus and congratulations on your 50th puzzle. Also, huge thanks to DT for the hints.

  23. Superb puzzle for me that asked questions but gave solver plenty of help. My favourite was 13a which made me smile. Thx for hint to explain 4d which was the only poet I knew with those checking letters.
    Very enjoyable.
    Thx to all
    **/*****

  24. Not at all surprised that I found this one the best of a good week once I’d been told it was a Silvanus puzzle. They are a joy to solve & today was no exception. All solved & parsed in *** time though I did need to look up awn & wouldn’t have been entirely confident of defining solicitude. Not a dud clue in there & more than enough really good ‘uns to fill at least 3 podia. Ticks for me were 1,13,18&23a along with 1,3,4,7&17d. Top spot was 13a edging it in a tight photo finish over 7d.
    Thanks to Silvanus & to DT.

  25. Reiterating all that has been said – last one in 10d and then had to look at the hints to tell me why. Stars on 1,13 and 23a, 1 and 7d. I presume that Anderson is a cricketer which would make 12a quite clever. I think I shall sally forth to Scottsdale’s this afternoon in search of some grass seed, after the
    rain i went round digging out plantains etc which has left some bare patches. I told George it was the squirrels burying nuts! Enjoy the weekend and thank you to Setter and Hinter.

    1. Hello Daisy – Thank you very much for asking about Lola. She is fine – now on half a steroid daily, and that seems to be the right level for her. Over the last month she has brought in gifts of baby mice at least once each week, so her hunting skills are as finely honed as ever.
      She is a lovely little cat and a joy to have in our lives.
      All the best to you, and George.

  26. Many congratulations to Silvanus on reaching the half-century and in maintaining his very high standard throughout.
    This was well up there in the enjoyment stakes – thanks to Silvanus and to DT for the review.
    I don’t think anyone who heard Angela Rippon pronouncing the 19d partisan when she used to read the News would get it confused with the primate.
    I have 13a, 27a and 14d jostling for top place on my podium.

    1. I agree, Gazza. Angela Rippon came immediately to my mind when I solved the clue. I’ve never heard anyone else before or since pronounce it in that way.

      1. I recall that Pamela Stephenson used to parody that particular affected pronunciation very successfully in Not The Nine O’ Clock News :-)

  27. A fine puzzle, this. Really good clues, a decent challenge and a satisfying solve. Fav: 7d – but, I wonder, could it have been shortened to just Jag instead of Jaguar car? 3.5*, 4*

    1. Talking about kids’ toilet-based jokes, here’s one I heard recently on an American sitcom:

      Q. If you’re American in the bedroom, what are you in the bathroom?

      A. European!

  28. FINISHED IT. But I do think the clue should help u find the answer not the only possible answer help you solve the clue. Could not parse 10d even with the only possible answer
    Solicitude was not in my vocabulary. But glowing with pride at having completed the puzzle. Now for a doze.

    1. Does it make it a bad clue because solicitude is not in your vocabulary?

      Answers are often not in my vocabulary. Awn wasn’t….. but it is now. That’s something to enjoy, isn’t it?

  29. Very enjoyable today and finished despite not knowing how I got there so thanks DT for the hints. Well done reaching the 50 milestone, and that’s just the start, we hope. Although Question of Sport has been ruined with its revamp, think All Creatures Great and Small is absolutely wonderful, far better than the original.

    1. Saint Sharon and I occasionally watch an old episode of All Creatures Grunt and Smell. They are hilarious compared to the new series. Robert Hardy overacting his heart out, bellowing his lines as if projecting to the back of a theatre and telegraphing every line with an exaggerated movement to draw attention to the fact that he will speak next. He would have been a sound engineers nightmare

  30. Got my contrary hat on today, as I could not get on wavelength, leading to a DNF. Some answers I got despite the clues, 27a, 28a, 29a and 7d. However, did enjoy 1d and 4d as joint COTD status. I will blame it on brain tiredness having had to go to battle with admin staff at two different doctors’ offices. Thanks to Silvanus and Deep Threat.

  31. Given the identity of our setter, it’s hardly surprising that I thoroughly enjoyed this one. Not being a cricket fan, 12a was rather lost on me but I still managed to overfill the podium with 13,26&27a plus 14&25d. Particularly liked the use of ‘brush’ in 26a.

    Many thanks and congratulations to Silvanus and thanks to DT for the review and the reminder of one of my favourite Newhart clips.

  32. Very enjoyable and thanks and congratulations to Silvanus, and DT who so kindly explained 10d to me. (Even with that help I didn’t have that satisfying penny dropping feeling, though, I’m afraid.)

  33. There were too many that I couldn’t parse, a little convoluted, but others were very enjoyable. I had a lot of bungins, answers that had to be, 10d e.g., and I needed to go for a hint to get going again in the SW. I had the correct answer to 22a but didn’t write it in as had no idea what the rest of the fluff meant. I liked the two long anagrams, they were doable without any help and opened up a lot. Fave was 12a but I have no idea what it has to do with cricket, I think it stands nicely alone by itself.
    Thanks Silvanus and DT for unravelling not just a few!

  34. A very well put together crossword and I thought the reading of the clues was very good….just one slight problem, I can’t seem to solve that many of them! Thanks to Silvanus but I’ll probably have to admit defeat on this one!

  35. Hadn’t heard of the beard in 24d so Googled it, I have now. Same with the anxiety in 10d, I inserted ci into the answer in the only place it would fit and, lo and behold, it’s a real word. Even with all the checkers I couldn’t make head nor tail of 7d so electronic help was used. Apart from that no problems. Favourite was the sublime 12a. Thanks to Silvanus and DT.

  36. Pure hazard made this one come out of the bag and I am very pleased to have solved Silvanus’ fiftieth crossword.
    As others have said, a joy from start to finish.
    Thank you.
    Thanks also to DT for the review.

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