DT 29794 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29794

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29794

Hints and tips by StephenL

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Good morning all from South Devon. I commented on yesterday’s blog that I thought this week’s puzzles had been of a particularly high standard.

Well I’m happy to say the trend has continued with another fun puzzle from Ray T that I found to be at the gentler end of his range. Both Her Majesty and “sweetheart” are taking a day off today

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a        Vet   show on television? (6)
SCREEN:  Double definition, both verbs in this context

4a        Street along with a road guide (8)
STANDARD:  The abbreviations for street and road go round a conjunction meaning along with and A from the clue

9d        Metal containing iron is green, perhaps (6)
LEAFED:   A heavy metal goes around (containing) the chemical symbol for iron

10a      Runs into delays so gets off Eurostar? (8)
DETRAINS:   The abbreviation for runs sits inside (into) a synonym of delays

12a      Crazy outfit with nearly every single song (8)
MADRIGAL:  Three-letter synonyms of crazy and an outfit go before a word meaning every single without its last letter (nearly)

13a      One captures image originated by artist (6)
CAMERA:   A synonym of originated goes before the usual two-letter artist

15a      Excitedly augment encore giving cheer (13)
ENCOURAGEMENT:  Anagram (excitedly) of the following two words

18a      Strangely, dessert in diet is neutral (13)
DISINTERESTED:   Another anagram (strangely) of the following three words

22a      Shock dropping resistance for power cut (6)
OUTAGE : Remove the abbreviation for resistance (dropping) from a synonym of shock

24a      Plot in coarse ground (8)
SCENARIO:  Anagram (ground) of the preceding two words

26a      Part includes old time turn (8)
ROTATION:  A part or a share goes around (includes)  the abbreviations for old and time

27a      Regretted describing hip being damaged (6)
RUINED:  A four letter synonym of regretted goes around (describing) a preposition that could mean hip as an adjective, not a joint at the top of your leg

28a      Possibly one employed by great church (8)
MINISTER:  The letter that looks like the number one goes inside a large church. Clever use of employed. The whole clue is both wordplay and definition.

29a      Incredibly remote extraterrestrial object (6)
METEOR:  Anagram (incredibly) of remote


1d        Solitary soldier without a grave (6)
SOLEMN :  A synonym of solitary is followed by a soldier missing the A (without) from the clue

2d        Scrutinise skirt getting forward? (9)
READDRESS:  A synonym of scrutinise, as one would an important document perhaps is followed by an item of clothing similar to a skirt

3d        Sad English member upset CIA (7)
ELEGIAC:  Start with the abbreviation of English, add a body part or member then rearrange (upset) CIA

5d        Tackling Romulan Empire Kirk starts journey (4)
TREK:  The first letters (starts) of the preceding four words

6d        Tell made a bolt lifting speed (7)
NARRATE:   A reversal (lifting) of a word meaning “made a bolt for” followed by a four-letter synonym of speed

7d        Active US soldier with bitter exterior (5)
AGILE:   The usual US soldier has a bitter beer placed around it (exterior)

8d        Loathing endless calamity installing team’s leader (8)
DISTASTE:   Start with a calamity, a great misfortune perhaps and remove its last letter (endless). Place the letter T (team leader) in the appropriate place of the resulting word

11d      Football team rose and improved field? (7)
MANURED:  The short form of one of England’s most famous football teams is followed by the colour of the rose which represents the county in which the club sits

14d      Detailed sign accepting of French accent (7)
CADENCE:   One of the twelve signs of the zodiac minus its last letter (detailed) goes around (accepting) the French word for of

16d      Finish university career keeping new resolution (9)

ENDURANCE: A synonym of finish, the abbreviation for university and a synonym of race placed around (keeping) the abbreviation for new

17d      Mao dirge changed Chinese character? (8)
IDEOGRAM:  Anagram (changed) of the preceding two words

19d      Cancels practically recent openings (7)
NEGATES:  The first two letters of a three-letter (practically) synonym of recent are followed by some openings

20d      Large number certain to see crop circle? (7)
TONSURE :  A large number (a hundred in cricket say) is followed by a synonym of certain

21d      Criminal cheat with never-ending bird (6)
CONDOR :  A short form of a criminal plus a verb which can mean cheat and the last letter of the word never

23d      God of sex raised cane (5)
TITAN:   Start with reversal (raised) of a dated two-letter word for sex, and add a synonym of cane as a verb

25d      Endured  tedious person in pub? (4)
BORE:  An amusing double definition

Quickie Pun Warn + Piece = War and Peace




88 comments on “DT 29794

  1. Gentle but fun. I particularly liked the definition in 20d so that gets my vote today. Thanks to SL and today’s setter.

  2. Another thoroughly enjoyable puzzle from the Ray T production line, full of wit and his trademark concise clueing. 10a, 17 and 20d make it on to my podium.

    My thanks to Mr T and SL. There is a very accessible Giovanni Toughie today as well.

  3. Arrrgh! This was outside the edge of my comfort zone. My heart aches, and a drowsy numbness pains my sense, as though of hemlock I had drunk. Or waved a pencil around for an eternity trying to figure this one out. One or the other.
    I got there in the end by a combination of perspiration and asking Lola to help me with the anagrams (this failed as she decided to sleep instead).

    Today’s crossword soundtrack: Mary J Blige – Share My World

    Thanks to the setter and Stephen L and – as always – all the very best wishes to The Lovely Kath

    1. “Or emptied some dull opiate to the drains / One minute past, and Lethe-wards had sunk.” Thanks, Terence, for the JK footprint.

    2. I think Lola could have made a better job of this than me. As I use a gel pen, I have to be pretty confident of my answers before writing them in, and this only happened seven or eight times today.

  4. Another enjoyable puzzle, with some straightforward clues and a few head scratchers in the NW and SE corners. Thank you, Stephen for correcting me on 1a, in which I had written survey, without being totally convinced, exvept that survey is another word for watch and ismlisted in the thesaurus as a synonym of vet. Some of the charades were very fine, I thought, notably 3d, 14d and my COTD, 14a. Thanks to Ray T and to SLfor the hints.

  5. I also thought this a ** with *** on the pleasure scale from the great RayT. My COTD hasn’t been mentioned yet but 2d gets my tick as rather clever. I had heard of 20d which was clear from the clueing but hadn’t got a clue what it meant so thanks SL for the hint which explains all. Windy down here isn’t it? The halyards are fair flapping in our Marina!

  6. Well I found this the most straightforward Ray T ever – almost as if he was auditioning for the Monday backpager. Very enjoyable while it lasted

    Thanks to Mr T and StephenL

  7. Loved this. Also thought survey for 1a but then thought better of it, My COTD is 20d. RHS went in far quicker than LHS but altogether a very enjoyable solve. Thanks to Ray T and SL. Jolly cold here on the North Sea coast.

  8. 2*/4.5*. Another in a long line of excellent Ray T puzzles with 17d my favourite.

    I know it’s in the BRB so fair game for setters, but I detest the answer to 10a with a passion and it seems to be cropping up in crosswords a couple of times every week at present.

    It was slightly strange to see “raised cane” spelt like that but of course it is absolutely fine in the context of the wordplay and surface for 23d.

    Many thanks to RayT and to SL. Stephen, your review is excellent but it appears rather slender when displayed on my laptop screen although it is fine on my smartphone. :unsure:

    1. Forget that last remark. When I refreshed the page, the text for the review filled my screen perfectly.

  9. Thanks Stephen. I think you should substitute ‘crazy’ for ‘mad’ in your hint for 12a.
    I liked 2d and 20d.

  10. As Cryptic Sue said above, the quickest RayT solve I have ever managed. That is the result of eight years of writing reviews for this site. All very enjoyable. Last one in 14 down. Thanks to StephenL for the succinct review (Are you trying to explain in as few words as RayT uses in his clues? Thanks to RayT for the fun while it lasted

  11. Pushed into 2* time by 1a and 1d, but otherwise felt this was a typically sharp and clever RayT puzzle, full of wit and humour (11d, tee-hee). Nothing to alarm the equines and all very fairly clued, I thought.

    Hon. Mentions to 28a and 5d for their wonderful surface reads, and to 20d for the resulting broad smile, but COTD by a considerable margin to 17a – fantastic surface, incisive and witty.

    2* / 3.5*

    Many thanks to RT & to StephenL.

  12. That took some unravelling but it was certainly worth the effort. Solved in haphazard way so no section completed before the rest. 14d bunged in as I always forget that detailed connotation. Hardly need “in pub” for 25d? Surely rose is more pink than as per 11d.
    Thank you RayT and StephenL.

      1. I take your point RD and Angelov but I see “in pub” is a reference to the phrase “a pub ****” who is the epitome of a tedious person.

  13. My hero teetered slightly on his pedestal with the inclusion of that dreadful word at 10a but managed to make up for it elsewhere despite neglecting both his sweetheart and her most gracious Majesty.
    Tops for me were 9a & 17d plus the Quickie pun which doesn’t seem to have made the review.

    Devotions to Mr T and thanks to Stephen L for the words and music – well, maybe not the music!

  14. Yet again for me not the gentle breeze that others clearly found it but all solved & parsed in *** time. 17d was new to me & required confirmation & 11,14 & lastly 21d were the 3 head scratches. Another vote for 20d as pick of the bunch.
    Thanks to Ray T & SL plus thoughts to Kath.
    Ps Yesterday’s Eccles puzzle in the Indy was great fun & contained clue of the month for me. I’ve started to make a point of looking out for his crosswords having noticed Jane, RD & CS comment on them. Well worth a look.

  15. Some head scratching today in the NW corner not helped by the mispelling of 3d -aic for iac hence took a while to parse 12a
    Going for a ***/****.
    Loved the surface of 20d and made it my favourite- thanks to Stephen L for the amusing pic with 8d a close second with a mention of 11d and the clever 17d.
    Most enjoyable.

  16. I concur with our blogger’s opening comment on the quality of this week’s puzzles although I found today’s to be an average, rather than a gentle, Ray T – 2.5*/4*.

    Candidates for favourite – 7d, 14d, 16d, 20d – and the winner is 20d.

    I’m not sure why, but I did smile at 11d with the thought of the combination of the football team and the field improvement ‘product.’

    Thanks to Ray T and StephenL.

    A proXimal tomorrow would be a perfect conclusion to the (non-)work week.

  17. I found this quite difficult but there again I do have a filthy cold at the moment and am not firing on all cylinders. ***/*** Thanks for the explanation for 21d, SL. I took the cheat part to be con and the never ending bird to be an Orc (without the ending) and had no idea why there was a d in the middle! That about sums up my mushy head today. 10a I absolutely loathe as a word. I might “get off” or “disembark” but I ‘d leave the Americans to their preference every time. Thanks to all.

    1. Although the poor old Americans seem to get the blame for most words people don’t like in crosswords, the word people are hating most these days (10a) is actually English not American

        1. We have a set of dictionaries from the 1800s and it is in there so presumably could be considered as ‘archaic’ now

      1. I don’t see a problem with 10a, or its counterpart “entrain”. These are well-established English words, mean exactly what they say on the tin, are in all the dictionaries and are there to be used by anyone. What do these detractors find so hateful?

          1. Why thank you, kind sir! I was expecting someone to counter my assertion at the bottom end of the thread at #12, above.

    2. Lots of my friends have colds and are testing themselves every 5 mins to make sure it’s not the dreaded C so I am maxing out on oranges at present to try and avoid catching one. Cold viruses are obviously having a field day! Hope you feel better soon

      1. Apparently because very few people caught colds during last winter’s lockdown, a new Super Cold Virus has taken advantage of the situation and seems to be everywhere. Luckily we haven’t enough petrol to go gallivanting so I’m hoping we’ll avoid the germ-ridden.

        1. My granddaughters weren’t quite as “over it” as we thought. All of them have had colds since going back to school. Avoid them! And it really is quite awful. I shall stay in splendid isolation until it goes.

  18. I’m not having a very good week with the crosswords and today’s added to the pain. I am just not on wavelength at the moment. Perhaps it is down to dashing around Oswestry trying to get a prescription filled for Mrs. C. only to be told each time that they cannot get said item. Boots did at least tell me they would text me when they had the medication but, in the meantime, Mrs. C. has to put up with the pain.

    As ever, my not being able to complete the puzzle is down to me and not our illustrious setters.

    My thanks to Ray T and Stephen L.

      1. Thanks, Sabrinastar. Actually Boots have sent a text to say they now have the medication in. I will pick it up tomorrow. I will remember Rhodes for future reference, though.

  19. Winter must be a-Cummins’ in as we had soup for lunch today. Jolly cold and I am glad we went to the coast last week, Manders. No problems here with Ray T’s lovely offering although I don’t care for the 9a word (I won’t add any more to the 10a discussion). Does anyone ever say that about trees? I reckon it is only used as leafed through a book. 4a, 3, 14, 17 and 20d got a star. Thanks,Stephen L for the hinty bits.

  20. Really nice crossword with so many favourites and two new words for me at 3 & 17d ***/**** Favourites 3d, 11d and 23d 😃 Thanks to Stephen L and Ray T 🤗 Comment “What no Quicky answer!” War n’ Peace ?

  21. All psyched up to do battle with Ray T but found him to be in a most generous mood.
    Nevertheless, brilliantly and elegantly clued and satisfying to complete.
    Many thanks Ray T and StephenL for the review.

  22. First off, regards to Kath. Hope she is doing better. 11d held me up for ages, pushing me into *** time, but I thoroughly enjoyed this Ray T poser. Podium stars: 14, 20 & 2d. Thanks to StephenL for the review and to Mr T for the pleasure. *** / ****

    Excellent Toughie…finished all on my own, rare for a Thursday.

  23. For the most part I got through this puzzle without the use of hints but the NW really held me up. Overall 2.5*/**** today.
    12a, 3d & 20d were words not known to me at all, thus the hold up in the NW where two of those words were. Definitely needed the hints there. Favourites include 4a, 6d & 21d with winner 21d.
    Several answers had to be what they were but had trouble with parsing to firm them up, but the hints made those clear.

    Thanks to Ray T for the brain exercise and StephenL for the parsing of my troublesome clues.

  24. Unlike many of the above bloggers I found this to be really tough, must try harder next time as my teachers used to say. Thank you Ray T and StephenL

  25. Straightforward RayT with no trademark clues (except the one word in the Quickie).
    Like some others erred with 3d but still finished in ** time **** fun factor.
    20d gets COTD.
    Was uncomfortable with 11d, “manure” rminded me too much of what the said team are playing like at the moment.
    Thank you Mr T and StephenL for the review.

  26. This was quite gentle for a Ray T production but, as usual, had excellent clues and was an enjoyable solve. Fav: 6d. 2*, 3.5*.

  27. I don’t care how many say this was a gentle puzzle, it’s the first time I have finished a RayT unaided, so I am feeling quite chuffed. Can’t say I understood them all ,but the answers I put in were correct. I might even have a glass 🥃 to celebrate, maybe two🤪. Thanks to all.

    1. It’s a great feeling isn’t it? Congratulations Dave a d here’s to many more successes.🍻

  28. As always, I found I was swimming in molasses. I did complete the eastern half, then struggled mightily in the SW after getting a hint to get me going again, but I didn’t complete the NW as I ran out of steam. The only word I didn’t know was 17d, so there was really no excuse. My fave was 20d.
    Thank you RayT and huge plaudits to StephenL for unravelling this lot and then explaining it all to us.

  29. Well done DaveG.
    Onward and upward, soon you’ll be wondering what caused you the problems.

  30. Evening all. My thanks to StephenL for the analysis and to everybody else for your comments. Much appreciated, as always, and my best wishes to Kath, of course!


    1. Thanks for yet another great puzzle sir that was a pleasure to solve and provide the hints for. My best wishes to Kath too.

    2. Thank you for popping in, Mr T, and for sending best wishes to Kath – she always manages to contribute a few words on ‘your’ day.

  31. How great to be a part of communication between setter and hinter. Thanks again RayT and StephenL. 👍.

  32. Oh – I know not difficult but I thought it more in that direction than it has been recently – oh dear – grammar!!!!
    We have a new grandson ten days ago – Joseph Andrew – he seems to have had little help to my brain . . .! Damn – just when I thought . . .
    Thanks to Ray T and StephenL

    1. Hi Kath

      Lovely to hear from you. We are all thinking of you and miss you very much. Enjoy Joseph Andrew. Grandchildren are such a blessing.

    2. The blog’s a much nicer place when you’re around, Kath. Enjoy getting to know Joseph, at least both of your grandchildren are on your ‘doorstep’, wish mine were.

    3. Wonderful to hear from you, Kath and huge congratulations on the arrival of Joseph Andrew. Please keep popping in.

    4. Kath
      What a great pick-me-up for you. Who cares about the grammar it’s the grandma that matters!
      Lovely to hear from you.

  33. I found the NW corner difficult. I’m hardly an expert on female clothes but didn’t think a dress was a type of skirt. Had to look up the answer to 2d as the clue was no help to me.

    Otherwise an enjoyable solve.

    Thanks to all.

  34. This was, for me, straightforward until it wasn’t. Having raced through the clues I hit a brick wall. I sorted the the NW out eventually then the SE and wondered what I’d been messing about for. Hey ho! I got there. Favourite was 11d as the interplay of words amused me. Thanks to Rayt and SL.

  35. Thanks to Ray T and to StephenL for the review and hints. A very enjoyable puzzle. Quite gentle for a Ray T. Got a bit held up in the NW corner, but got there in the end. LOI was 2d. Favourite was 1d. Was 2* /3* for me.

  36. I only normally attempt Mondays and Wednesdays so Like DaveG this was my first RayT. Took a while but lots of fun. ***/***. Thanks to RayT and to StephenL.

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