DT 29929 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29929

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29929

Hints and tips by Mr K

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BD Rating  -  Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

Hello, everyone. Looks like my Tuesday is going to be snow-covered. Again. Today we have a fun little puzzle free of obscurities and unreasonable contortions. It also has a couple of clever all-in-one clues. 

In the hints below most indicators are italicized, and underlining identifies precise definitions and cryptic definitions. Clicking on the answer buttons will reveal the answers. In some hints hyperlinks provide additional explanation or background. Clicking on a picture will enlarge it or display a bonus illustration and a hover (computer) or long press (mobile) might explain more about the picture. Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.



1a    Bank worker's more comfortable getting article for uniform (7)
CASHIER:  In an adjective meaning "more comfortable", substitute a grammatical article for the letter represented in the NATO phonetic alphabet by uniform 

5a    Brown top from Tesco with peculiar fit (7)
TANTRUM:  Link together a brown colour, the first letter of (top from) TESCO, and odd or peculiar 

9a    Typical American university student is after top grade (5)
USUAL:  Concatenate an abbreviation for American, the single letter for university, the "top grade" in America, and the letter indicating a student or learner driver

10a   Hold back prisoner with small drill (9)
CONSTRAIN:  Fuse together a usual prisoner, the clothing abbreviation for small, and drill or practise 

11a   Frightful shock lasting 24 hours? (3,4,3)
BAD HAIR DAY:  The wordplay instructs us to link together frightful or not good, a shock found on one's head, and a period lasting 24 hours. The entire clue can serve as the definition 

12a   Some flipping criticism -- hopefully they show resistance (4)
OHMS:  The answer is hidden in the reversal of (some flipping) the remainder of the clue 

14a   Amazingly doctor slips, hurrying out of hospital (12)
SURPRISINGLY:  An anagram (doctor) of SLIPS HURRYING minus the single letter for hospital (out of hospital) 

18a   This sentence is in this page by Sterne, awfully edgy (7,5)
PRESENT TENSE:  Assemble an abbreviation for page, and anagram (awfully) of STERNE, and a synonym of edgy 

21a   Poet's ordinary recording (4)
OVID:  The single letter for ordinary with an informal word for a recording with images. The poet is ancient 

22a   One working with rock star initially moans dreadfully following sound quality (10)
STONEMASON:  Join together the initial letter of STAR, a word describing sound quality, and an anagram (dreadfully) of MOANS 

25a   Clever, fashionable chap cut debts (9)
INGENIOUS:  Chain together fashionable or trendy, a synonym of chap minus its last letter (cut), and some debts traditionally scribbled on a scrap of paper 

26a   Lord, for example, imprisoned in story (5)
LIEGE:  The abbreviation for "for example" contained by (imprisoned in) a story that's not true. I have my doubts about the truth of a story claiming that in 1870 a city named 26a trained 37 cats to deliver mail …

27a   Larger kitchen tool in Spain? On the contrary (7)
GREATER:  Inverting the wordplay (on the contrary), insert the IVR code for Spain in a kitchen tool that produces little pieces of something 

28a   Cart pulled back miles by an outdoor labourer (7)
YARDMAN:  Glue together the reversal (pulled back) of a low cart, the single letter for miles, and AN from the clue 



1d    Caught old man getting fat (6)
CHUBBY:  The cricket abbreviation for caught with "old man" in the spousal sense

2d    Learn about end of Oliver Hardy (6)
STURDY:  A synonym of learn containing (about) the end letter of OLIVER 

3d    Drunk, I turned all grumpy (3-7)
ILL-NATURED:  An anagram (drunk) of I TURNED ALL 

4d    In theatre curtains come round at intervals (5)
RECUR:  The answer is hidden in the remainder of the clue 

5d    Timid camper's covering topless resident (9)
TENTATIVE:  A camper's covering is followed by all but the first letter (topless, in a down clue) of resident or local 

6d    Cracked  almonds? (4)
NUTS:  Double definition, with the ? indicating that the second one is by example 

7d    Swine blocking the way? (4,4)
ROAD HOGS:  The wordplay gives us the answer as some swine placed after (blocking) a way or street. The entire clue can serve as the definition 

The aftermath of a truck full of pigs being overturned

8d    Scatter seed in my imagination (5,3)
MINDS EYE:  An anagram (scatter) of SEED IN MY 

13d   Various bananas sir mislaid (10)
DISSIMILAR:  An anagram (bananas) of SIR MISLAID 

15d   Small Parisian coat contains old cake (5,4)
PETIT FOUR:  The French word (… Parisian) for small is followed by a type of coat that contains the abbreviation for old 

16d   Being hostile to work and assuming an attitude (8)
OPPOSING:  An abbreviated musical work with "assuming an attitude" 

17d   First person to call upper-class European something sweet (8)
MERINGUE:  Cement together a first person pronoun, call on the phone, the single letter for upper-class, and the single letter for European 

19d   Upset faces after he loses husband's respect (6)
ESTEEM:  The reversal (upset, in a down clue) of faces or confronts comes after HE from the clue minus the genealogical abbreviation for husband (loses husband) 

20d   Lock up  trainee (6)
INTERN:  A double definition. The trainee typically gets experience in lieu of payment 

23d   Horrid adult breaking new pen (5)
NASTY:  The single letter for adult placed between (breaking) the abbreviation for new and a pen for pigs

24d   Regularly consult king (4)
CNUT:  Alternate letters (regularly) of CONSULT



Thanks to today’s setter. Top clue for me was 7d. Which clues did you like best?

The Quick Crossword pun:  AYE + LAW + WHITE = ISLE OF WIGHT

68 comments on “DT 29929

  1. The NW corner held out the longest but the rest was most enjoyable with plenty of good clues to give cheer over the morning coffee. I can’t say I understood all the parsing, though. I have no idea where “more comfortable” comes into 1a, for example. Ticks go by 18a and 19d with the latter being my COTD.

    Many thanks to the setter for the fun and to Mr. K. for the hints and pusskits.

    A sunny day in The Marches with a definite nip in the air. A couple of layers will be needed for the afternoon walk with Hudson.

    Wordle in 4. Had 4 after the second go but chose the wrong letter. Start word was “steam”.

    PS – loved the Quickie pun and, having seen Mr. K’s hints, I now know where “more comfortable” comes from in 1a.

    1. 1a the “more comfortable” is a word ***** often used to describe an easy job (only more so)

      1. Yes took me ages to parse that one too. I bunged the answer in right away but took ages to see why.

  2. Great fun. I particularly enjoyed 11a, 2d and 7d. Thanks to today’s setter and Mr K.

  3. Excellent crossword – as Mr K says, no obscurities. I really warm to puzzles where the answer is there if one simply follows the setter’s directions. A big ‘HOORAY!’ for today’s setter.

    Did half an hour’s work in the garden yesterday; feel like I have run a marathon.

    Today’s crossword soundtrack: Todd Rundgren – Love Is The Answer

    Thanks to the setter and The Celebrated Mr K.

  4. A straightforward Tuesday coffee-break challenge, with a grid offering us rather more clues than yesterday’s fare, which left me feeling a bit short-changed!

    Ho mentions to 21a, 7d and 24d, and COTD to 11a.

    1 / 2.5

    Many thanks to the setter and to MrK

  5. No real favourites today but a perfectly pleasant & largely straightforward pre golf puzzle that took me a bit longer than it ought to have really.
    Thanks to the setter & Mr K
    Wordle in 4

  6. 11a gave me my biggest laugh out loud moment so that became my favourite clue. I thought this was a typical Tuesday puzzle; good, solid clues, a few tougher ones to make one think, and great fun to complete.

    My thanks to both Misters involved. I recommend the Toughie today too, which is very user-friendly.

  7. 22a my fave today for the misdirection. A diamond in a basket of rubies. Thanks setter and parser. 1*/4*

  8. I’m afraid I have to disagree with everyone….I took ages to complete this one.
    Struggling to see how dissimilar equals various, but I guess they both mean unlike….sort of…..
    Wasn’t familiar with 28a ….is it an Americanism?

    Thanks to the setter and to Mr K and his cats.

    Another gloriously sunny day …but chilly.

    1. I would say various/different/not the same. 28a could be an Americanism but I seem to remember it her for an outdoor worker such as a surface worker at a coal mine.

    2. And I thought I was so clever in coming up with yorrick for 28a, even though it didn’t quite fit the clue. But then it really didn’t help with 13d or 20d. Do hear the term a lot over here, so no excuse for that.

    3. I think of it as American. How many Brits call their gardens “yards”, not many I don’t think, but Americans seldom call their yards “gardens”.

    4. Hi, Ora. Collins and the ODE qualify the required definition of 28a as American, but the BRB doesn’t and that’s what counts for Telegraph puzzles. It sounds like an Americanism to me.

  9. I should have started with the Downs which I effectively did after the first pass through the Acrosses had me thinking that this was going to be a real Stinker. However, the Downs came to the rescue and a typically Tuesday puzzle emerged – **/****.

    Candidates for favourite – 5a, 10a, 7d, 17d, and 20d – and the winner is 20d.

    Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

    The Puzzles Web Site tells me that the Toughie is a Dada and it turned out to be a cheesy one.

  10. Steady, workmanlike progress to completion.
    Last in 24d. Thrown by its unusual spelling which, when checked was, in fact, an alternative.
    So **/****
    Many thanks to the setter and to Mr. K.

  11. Thanks MrK, top illustrations today. First perusal had me a bit empty in NW. However, a hound walk plus coffee and a bracing easterly later, I went through this fun grid like a dose of salts. No-one has put their head above the parapet yet re our setter but could it be Chalicea? Lots of smiles, love the letter substitution at 1a but COD 11a. Due to fading neuroplasticity, this ‘shock’ gets me every time.

  12. For some reason my first impression was that this was going to be a killer but once lift-off was achieved it became smooth sailing and great fun. 20d seemed to be the only chestnut. Joint Favs 11a and 14a. Thank you Messrs. Ron and K (particularly for parsing 19d for me). Quickie pun is fun too. Have just read Senf’s comment above and see we both had similar initial reaction – great minds think alike?!

  13. 2*/4*. This was light and good fun with excellent clueing and smooth surfaces all the way.

    My top four clues were 5a, 11a, 22a & 7d.

    Many thanks to the setter and to Mr K – great review together with some splendid pictures.

  14. Made a complete ass of myself here with 24d. Dismissed consult for the odd letters as did not make sense. I then thought of kn. Just could not see it. Even ran through the alphabet looking for Kings. I have never, or cannot recall, that spelling. Shame as rest of it went in less than 2* time. Thanks setter and Mr K. Favourites 11 22a and 15d.

  15. Got off to a slow start with this one but picked up the pace further down the grid.
    Plenty of chuckles along the way particularly over 11a & 7d. Wide smile for the Quickie pun where my younger daughter lives.

    Thanks to our setter along with Mr K and the feline with ‘attitude’!

  16. Super puzzle, such a relief after yesterdays travails.
    Took a while to sort out 14a and when did King Canute get woked? I assume this must be a revisionist spelling in 24d.
    Best for me was 22a but it was only one of many.
    Thx to all

    1. When I was a youngster at school (in the year nineteen hundred and frozen to death) the history teacher wrote on the blackboard “King Cnut” and asked us all how to pronounce it. Most of us said “Cee-Nut” but, since then, I have always used that spelling.

    2. I too have only ever seen it as Canute, but Peter says he remembers it being Kanute.

    3. Oxford Dictionary of English says:

      Canute /kəˈnju:t/ (also Cnut or Knut)
      (d.1035), Danish king of England 1017–35, Denmark 1018–35, and Norway 1028–35, son of Sweyn I. He is remembered for demonstrating to fawning courtiers his inability to stop the rising tide; this has become distorted in folklore to suggest that Canute really expected to turn back the tide.

      Collins also gives the same three versions of his name.

  17. Much better after yesterday’s proved to be beyond me.
    I liked 24d although I too thought it started with a k. Overall, a very pleasant couple of hours….for me, the longer it takes, the more enjoyment, or pain, I have.
    Thanks to the setter and to Mr K for explaining some of the answers.

  18. Very straightforward solve for me today. I’ll probably get my comeuppance later in the week! Favorite was 12A with 11A just behind. Thanks to Mr. K and the setter.

    Happy International Women’s Day, ladies!

    1. Hi Expat Chris. Did you work today’s NYT puzzle? It’s a celebration of International Women’s Day, and I enjoyed it very much. Learned something too.

  19. Nice crossword 😃 ***/*** Favourites 11a, 22a & 27a 👍 24d was new to me, but had to be 🤔 Thanks to Mr K and to the Compiler

  20. A relatively gentle and nice puzzle for Tuesday … A bit easier too as opposed to Monday’s. 2*/4*
    Favourites include 5a, 11a, 1d, 2d & 7d with winner 11a.
    1d & 6d made me laugh too

    Thanks to setter & Mr K

  21. Very nice puzzle. Laughed at 7d and again with Mr K’s illustration. 18a, 21a, and 24d lead the parade of winners today. Thanks to Mr K and today’s setter. 1.5* / 3.5*

  22. Great fun today so thank you to all involved. The 4 letter poet held me up for a bit but otherwise went in nicely. Lovely day here but pretty cold. Wordle in 4 and Quordle in 8 – am now hooked on both!

    1. I did Quordle for the first time today and got three of the words and missed out on the fourth because I chose the wrong letter.

  23. Thoroughly enjoyable although like hrothgar and WW 24 was last one in, I just didn’t make the connection. 11a was sheer brilliance – just like my oven which Mr Sparkle cleaned for me this morning. £75 well spent, it is gleaming like an onion in the spring. I will not dare to use it. I never knew that the knobs pushed in, complete surprise. Anyway, 18a and 22a were great clues as was 19d. Thanks to Messrs Setter and Hinter – more cats please🐱

    1. I hate cleaning ovens too so I will see if we have a Mr Sparkle round here – does he do gas hobs as well? I’ve never used my little top oven as its about 9 inches smaller than the previous one although the whole space is the same. We had a funny little meter years ago and I stopped using the top oven when I found out it used far more electricity than the big one. Ditched the electric kettle too.

      1. He works, or should I say they work, exclusively in East Anglia so you are OK Manders. My friend had
        him last summer and raved about her ‘new’ oven. He makes minimal mess, does the soaking of the
        racks etc in his van – well worth the money. They are very busy, I have been waiting for the man of my dreams
        since November! And yes, they do do gas hobs – but we do not have gas here.
        Never let it be said that these columns do not encompass the whole gamut of human experience.

        1. Will have a look thanks DG. Ours is bottled gas, 1 cylinder lasts at least 6 months!

  24. I’m off to have my pacemaker checked by my cardioelectrician so will read the hints and comments later. Very enjoyable but not a walk in the park, I could get enough checkers to get my answers with e-help. Fave was 11a ‘cos it was first one in.
    Thanks setter for the fun and Mr. K for unravelling some, 1a in particular. As usual, your pics were perfect. Wordle in 3.

  25. Just about right for a Tuesday IMO.
    11a and 7d both amused but I would also mention 13d. Three out of four words could have been the anagram indicator and sir could have had either of the other two words as the fodder, Sorting out the definition, fodder and anagrind was quite a tussle, but a satisfactory PDM.
    Thanks to Mr K and his pussies.

  26. Clearly the Pinot Grigio is working for me on hols as this excellent puzzle fell easily in */**** style. My favourite three were 11a, 22a and 19d. All excellent and a very even solve so thanks to Mr K for his efforts and the setter for his brilliance.

    A nice end to a beautiful day in the Peak District this morning climbing on a surprisingly equable Stanage Edge.

    1. Looks like you were near Robin Hood’s Cave, and brave to put bare hands-on gritstone in early March! Even though it looks sunny it takes a lot of the big yellow thing to warm the rock up.

  27. Hi everyone
    I’ve been lurking here for over a year, but as I always attempt the crossword the day after publication, have felt it futile to contribute. That said, I would like to thank all the contributors, reviewers and setters for what has become an essential read for me.

    As with one of yesterday’s contributors, I now feel that the cost of purchasing the paper edition has gone beyond fair. I attempted to use the link provided by Mikep (puzzles.telegraph.co.uk). On the IPad it refuses to let me access the site (citing either payload or captcha issues). On the laptop I managed to register, but every time I click on the cryptic crossword link it sends me to a subscription page. Any help in resolving one, other, or both of these challenges would be much appreciated.
    Many thanks

    1. Welcome to the site, Chris, and thanks for the thanks.

      Full access to puzzles.telegraph.co.uk is by subscription. That’s currently £35.88/year (https://puzzles.telegraph.co.uk/faq#2), which is much cheaper than buying the newspaper. The subscription gives you access to an archive of crosswords and other puzzles all the way back to the early 2000s.

    2. Hi Chris. You might consider a Digital Newspaper Subscription which costs me £55 per annum. I get the whole newspaper delivered to my iPad during the night. The puzzles at the end consist of 2 Sodukus. The codeword puzzle. The Quickie Puzzle The Cryptic Puzzle and on Tuesday through Friday the Toughie puzzles. That suits me. Daily Telegraph Subscriptions Customer Engagement O800 332020 if you are interested

  28. 2/4. Really enjoyed this puzzle. 11a was my favourite clue. The top half went in very quickly but it took a while before I could break into the bottom half. Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  29. Excellent stuff. As was mentioned previously no obscurities, just good fair cluing. Favourite was the brilliantly disguised lurker 12a. Thanks to the setter and Mr. K.

  30. Completed in two halves around a nice lunch out but alas no wine, as driving! Clearly the break worked as upon return later I immediately filled in 4 clues on the run and it was almost plain sailing to the finish. Many thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  31. Nice puzzle and loved the sound technician cartoon. Hadn’t come across the three letter word for recording (but had bunged in the poet correctly) in 21a. Have I lived a too sheltered life perhaps or did others think this not quite right too?

  32. What a very enjoyable puzzle. Tough enough that I didn’t finish it all over breakfast, and still had some to fill in over late morning coffee. Nothing obscure or requiring a GK deep dive, perfectly doable. LOL at 11a. Thought Learn was the definition in 2d, and was misled by the capital H on Hardy, so that was my LI. Thanks to the setter, would love more like this one, and to Mr K, always the best pictures.

  33. Only a couple of smudges on my copy as I wrote Striking in 16d, thinking it was a double def.
    Liked the all in ones but favourite is 22a.
    Thanks to the setter and to MrK for the review.

  34. Great puzzle, as MrK observed, no obscurities or over-complex meccano, just clever elegant clueing… I zoomed through it, but I think I was just in the right frame of mind rather than it being particularly easy….

  35. A very enjoyable puzzle with someone highly innovative and original surface reads.
    5,14& 22a were my highlights but it was all top notch as was the review. Thanks setter and
    Mr K.

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