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DT 30009

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30009

Hints and Tips by StephenL

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Good morning all from a partly sunny South Devon where Summer seems to be arriving in fits and starts. One constant however is that every other Thursday we have the pleasure of a concisely clued and witty crossword to solve. This one was no different, and a lot of fun.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


7a. Row putting stick into a hole (8)
ARGUMENT: A from the clue and a synonym of hole in the sense of tear into which is inserted a synonym of stick as a verb

9a. A fellow lives for handsome youth (6)
ADONIS: A from the clue, a university fellow and a simple way of saying lives

10a  Legend of empty mystery and truth (4)
MYTH: The outside letters (empty) of two of the following three words

11a   Recognised deceit with card turned over (10)
ACCREDITED: Anagram (turned over) of two of the preceding three words

12a  Exceptional youngster facing old martial art (6)
AIKIDO: A way of saying exceptional or first class using two letters, an informal word for a child and the abbreviation for Old

14a   Tries ale out getting most forward (8)
EARLIEST: Anagram (out) of the preceding two words

15a  Grand pike found in butcher’s? (6)
GLANCE: Ignore the apostrophe, butcher’s here is a verb. The abbreviation for Grand and a pike in the sense of a weapon

17a  Farmer in outbuilding pens sheep (6)
MERINO: Cleverly hidden (pens) in the clue

20a  A battle fixing toilet after flood (8)
WATERLOO: An informal word for a toilet follows a synonym of flood or irrigate.

22a   Generous  volunteer? (6)
TENDER: Double definition, volunteer here being a verb

23a   Welcome Victoria, say, around parlour occasionally (10)
SALUTATION: An example (say) of what Victoria (or 20a for that matter) is goes around the occasional letters of pArLoUr

24a. Back hands to make change (4)
SWAP: Reverse an informal word for one’s hands

25a  Mail diminished carrying sexy snaps (6)
PHOTOS: Some mail loses its last letter (diminished) and is placed around (carrying) a synonym of sexy

26a Reddish lady after vacation with caution (8)
GINGERLY: A colour that is a kind of red/orange followed by the outside (after vacation) letters of LadY


1d  Good! Fish, fish, fish! (8)
GRAYLING: Tha abbreviation for Good, and two of crosswordland’s favourite fishes give another fish

2d Prolific  drinker? (4
LUSH: Double definition, one an adjective and one a (informal in this context) noun

3d Exercise over, boy overturned boat (6)
PEDALO: The abbreviation for some Physical Exercise followed by a reversal (overturned) of the abbreviation for Over and an informal word for a boy

4d Roughly, heartless judge gives rollicking (8)
CAREFREE: The abbreviation for CircA (roughly) and a (sports) judge without (heartless) his/her middle letter. My last one in

5d   Person in Capitol, I suspect? (10)
POLITICIAN: Anagram (suspect) of the preceding three words

6d   Notes provided over detailed rhyme (6)
FIVERS: Reverse a synonym of provided as a conjunction and add a rhyme without its last letter (de-tailed)

8d   Reportedly flash the thing to travel? (6)
TICKET: If we split the solution 4-2 we have a synonym of flash in the sense of quickly plus a homophone of a third person pronoun giving an extended definition.

13d Wanting Queen at aid broadcast (10)
INADEQUATE: Anagram (broadcast) of the preceding three words

16d  Pass on drinks with sweetheart faint (8)
COLLAPSE: A mountain pass, drinks as a verb and this setter’s swEeetheart

18d Pullover, all stretched, covers boiler suit (8)
OVERALLS: Hidden in the clue (covers)

19d Leaning forward playing the cello? (6)
BOWING: A whimsical description of the action of playing a cello (or violin)

21d. Native American swiftly catches horse’s head (6)
APACHE: Place a rather nice synonym of quickly around the initial (catching head) letter of Horse

22d Temporary housing housing a new occupant (6)
TENANT: A temporary dwelling that some people like sleeping in on holiday (can’t think of anything worse!) goes around A from the clue and the abbreviation for New

24d Source of river’s rising (4)
SEED: Reverse (rising in a down clue) a popular (for setters) river and add the possessive S from the clue.

Quickie pun  Icon + Tacked = Eye Contact

Clues I liked best were 12a plus 4d. Which ones floated your 3d

Today’s music is this gem of an outtake from Steey Dan I recently discovered. How can you leave anything this good off an album.








76 comments on “DT 30009

  1. Difficult grid today, an enjoyabl well clued puzzle with lots of good surfaces.
    Nicely misled by 17a,my D’oh moment.
    Last in was 24d when I eventually twigged the ‘ s’ and the source!
    Going for a **/****.Thanks SL for the pics and our’every other Thursday setter’
    liked the Quick Puzzle and the pun

  2. Enjoyable puzzle, a typically polished RayT and for me the more challenging of the backpagers this week because of the two double-unches in Folkestone: took me ages to see those two short answers and on their own took me from 1* time to 2.5*. Very good clueing throughout, nothing to alarm the equines, no specialist knowledge required: what’s not to like?

    COTD by a distance to 1d, with Hon Mentions &/or smiles to various others including 23 & 25a, 4, 5, & 6d.

    2.5* / 3*

    Many thanks to Ray T and to Stephen L

  3. Mr T at his consistent very best! I might have to start writing – It’s every other Thursday :good: It’s Ray T :good: **/****.

    Candidates for favourite – 15a, 26a, 1d, and 6d – and the winner is 1d.

    Thanks to Ray T and to StephenL.

  4. Stylistically as clean and concise as ever, this model cryptic by Mr T seemed a bit gentler to me than usual, but nonetheless enjoyable, especially 1d, my COTD, 4d, and 12a. Thanks to StephenL and Ray T. ** / ****

    The Toughie earns its name today…still at it.

  5. A classic Ray T puzzle, and very enjoyable it was too, with lots of cunning misdirection and unusual synonyms. It was difficult to pixk a small selection of great clues but my choice is 1d for COTD, with 23a, 7a, 8d as runners up and a special mention for 26a because I’m married to a redhead, who insists that his hair is auburn. Many rhanks to SL for the hints and to the crossword maestro RayT.

  6. 2*/4.5*. Everything we expect on a RayT Thursday – great fun.

    I’m not quite sure about 8d. The wordplay is a synonym of “flash” plus a homophone of “the thing”, so “reportedly” only applies to the latter . “Tick it” is not a sensible phrase so “reportedly tick it” doesn’t make sense. I suppose it could be argued that it doesn’t matter as it doesn’t affect the surface reading, but it just struck me as a bit odd.

    With plenty of good clues to pick from, I’m going to nominate 1d as my favourite.

    Many thanks to RayT and to SL, and a big Thursday shout-out to Kath.

    1. I construed the instruction as being a homophone of the combined result of the wordplay, ie of “tick it”, not just of “it”. I don’t think it’s an entirely nonsensical phrase, as in:

      Q: What do you do in that box?
      A: Tick it.

      Q: I’ve seen a bird on my list, what do I do now?
      A: Tick it!

      Not entirely sure what the proper name is for the response is in both cases I’m afraid.

  7. A steady solve until I was left with a pair of 24s that stretched my capabilities somewhat. I down made me laugh. Thanks to StephenL for the blog and to RayT for the puzzle. I too am suffering from having to remind the site who I am every time I post. What fun. Not

  8. Another most enjoyable puzzle from the Thursday maestro although I would seem to be alone in finding it hard to accept 22a as ‘generous’.
    Tops for me were 8d and the Quickie pun.

    Devotions as ever to Mr T and thanks to Stephen for the review.

    1. I haven’t got a huge encyclopedic thesaurus, so I too found generous a stretch.

      1. All you need is a Chambers Crossword Dictionary, and to remember to check ‘both ways’.

      1. It’s a little of a stretch but in the sense of “kind in nature and disposition” ?

        1. I’m sure you’re right but I tried very hard to find a more satisfying alternative!

  9. First class Ray T puzzle, I do like it when he’s being kind!
    Thx to all

    1. Sorry meant to thank everyone for their best wishes, still a bit of a job thinking straight.

  10. I didn’t understand how 8d was reached but thought it was ‘just me being me’.
    Tricky puzzle for me as my skills remain at a rather basic level, but very enjoyable. I fell two short and relied on Stephen for 4d which I simply could not resolve until I saw his hint. Then, shamefully, I had written the answer to 17a in the margin but couldn’t relate it to the clue until Stephen pointed it out. D’oh!

    Thanks to Ray T and Stephen L. Hooray for Steely Dan!

  11. I did find this a struggle and needed the hints for a few but it was enjoyable, nevertheless. The usual clever cluing from Mr. T with some great misdirections. One was 15a, which had me wondering for ages why a butcher would sell fish. Another was the well hidden 17a and that almost became my COTD. That honour goes to 1d because I could see what was needed but I went through the whole aquarium before it clicked. Personally, I had no problem with 8d.

    Many thanks to Ray T for the fun and to StephenL for helping me get to the end.

    Huge Thursday shoutout to Kath. :rose:

  12. As Miffs I trotted along at a fair pace until I got to the 24’s, I couldn’t see my hands in front of my rivers, but thanks to SL’s hints I stumbled over the line. RayT’s trademark sweetheart clue gets the nod from me. Thanks to all concerned in the production of this fine puzzle and blog. Thursday wishes to Kath.

  13. Enjoyable and completed everything but struggled to parse 4d, 8d DOH and 22a still leaves me wondering how it means generous

  14. This was a proverbial curate’s egg for me but perhaps I’m just not on top form today after early rise for opthalmic consultant appointment hence I needed some prompts even with littluns like 15a, 24a and 6d. Hope to be back up to scratch tomorrow. Thank you RayT and StephenL.

  15. Same question mark re 8d but otherwise a steady solve till last entries at 24a & d, why is it the 4-letter clues often give the most problems?
    Liked 16d, but 1d takes the honours today.
    Thanks to RayT and StephenL, great stuff!

    1. My problem with the 24s was having only one checker in each, that checker being a vowel in both cases, and the clues being very artfully written!

  16. Raining here now in Plymouth SL. Thanks for the hints well crafted and not needed but I did find this one quite tricky at ***/***. I agree with all the 8d comments but fair enough and the economy of our setter’s clueing makes up for some slight stretches. I also agree with others re his 4 letter answers often being quite tricky as they were today. Had 3 or 4 COTD’s and particularly liked 16d. I think it’s the first three letters that remind me of days in the hills to come. Thanks SL and Mr T

  17. With a a Ray T puzzle you get exactly what it says on the tin; great clues, humour, brevity and style. 1d was my favourite of many with an honourable mention to 15a.

    Thanks to Mr T and SL.

  18. I tried to write something yesterday and show you a photograph of the card we received from HM. Unfortunately it was too many ‘things ‘ to accept the photo and in the end, being rather tipsy, I gave up. But I must say that bearing in mind how busy she was last weekend it was exceptionally good of her to remember to post it. Everyone around us is succumbing to the dreaded lurking so I’m quite glad we had not organised a party this time. We had a very nice lunch at the Rupert Brooke and DD2 and the GinPath neighbours came for drinks. I enjoyed todays workout but like others I wonder about 8d and find it hard to classify 3d as a boat, but 15,22 & 26a and 1&6d were delicious and big thanks to the setter and Stephen L. Greetings to Kath and sorry to hear Terence that you are suffering with the baronicals (as our dear old PC Chairman used to say). I remember Kaolin poultices for pleurisy – yuk. I’m sure antibiotics are easier.

    1. Hi DG, pleased to hear that you enjoyed your day and I’m sure you were entitled to get more than a bit tipsy after your long service to the institution!
      HM probably asked Paddington to post your card on his way home from the palace……….

      1. Third time lucky:
        I’m sure Paddington had a role. He has been very active recently, as is his due!

          1. The PT is hard but I’m battling on. Having seen down the maw of eternity, I’m happy to be back and will work to get there. I have a goal: to be discharged back home to my Sadie, I can’t begin to tell you how I miss her!

    1. Wow! Does this mean one has reached a certain maturity? If so – absolutely fabulous – well done – marbles are all obviously still intact. If it’s a gong – well done also. If neither then I’ll read all comments above later to catch up

      1. Have a heart -no not quite a century yet!!! Just a sapphire wedding anniversary , and yes, he did come up trumps!
        Of course, I was only four when I got married.

  19. Another fine puzzle from the master of concision. For me, about average difficulty for a Ray T and a tad above average compared to the back-page norm. Great clues and a very pleasing/entertaining solve. I’ve ticked quite a few, but will mention 1d just because it’s quite clever and rather amusing. 3*/4.5*

    *I had no problem with 8d, the grid, or anything else.

    1. Concision is a writing principle of eliminating redundancy. What’s the point of that when there is so much to witter on about?

      1. Wot you ramblin on about? In my World (and in the BRB), concision simply means brevity/conciseness.

        1. Ah, I see! It was satire/irony. Very good! What’s the point of using a short common word when several long obscure ones will do?

            1. Here’s a good one – from LBR replying to Brian:

              March 14, 2021 at 11:03 am
              Usual tricky Sunday but some very clever clues. My favs were 21a, 7d and 11a. However I wasn’t keen on 1a (just too tricksy for my taste), 18d and 22d(both a bit clumsy).
              Really needed some of todays excellent hints to finish this one (at the very least I learnt what the third person male pronoun is!).
              Tricky puzzle but enjoyable to complete.

              March 14, 2021 at 11:46 am
              Blimey Brian, you’ll be conjugating third person past participle Latin verbs in no time, then perhaps extrapolating on the perpendicular pronoun until such time that one jeopardises the sustenance of the ignominy or implication that one might be the perpetrator of terminological inexactitudes or otherwise superfluous nomenclature with what some more cynical than I might say would be a somewhat pantopragmatistic implication, notwithstanding the ichnology of the intended consequence, I think.

  20. Found this very challenging today that I could not get 3 of the clues.Just didn’t come to me so technically this was a DNF for me. 3.5*/3* today with what I did manage to complete.
    Despite this being a DNF, when I saw the answers for the clues I just could not get, they answers obvious.
    Just one of those days after a tiring day yesterday.
    Favourites include 12a, 17a, 20a, 26a, 1d & 16d with winner 26a.
    Did not know the first word that was part of the solution for the 16d lego clue. New to me.

    Thanks to Ray T and StephenL

  21. Very slow getting going and then it generally went OK today, apart from the odd hiccup or two.
    My vocabulary let me down – it never used to do that, damn it! The 15a ‘pike’ was only known as a fish rather than a weapon and 4d ‘rollicking’ was a bad telling-off.
    I could see that 11a had to be an anagram but just couldn’t get the letters in the right order – never mind – got it eventually.
    I liked 26a and 8d (I couldn’t see anything wrong with it) and my favourite was 1d.
    Thanks to Ray T and to StephenL.

    1. Nice to see you Kath. I thought the answer to 8d should be ‘light’
      as I am always being told that’s the way one should travel but I like to include everything including the kitchen sink.

  22. A tricky grid, as others have commented, but a very enjoyable solve, as ever.
    Loved 1d. Last in was 6d.
    Ticks for 17a, 23a, 26a, 1d, 13d, 21d and 24d.
    Thanks to Ray T and StephenL.

  23. Second day running I could do the Toughie but not the Backpager .
    4d my nemesis . Easy when you see it though
    Thanks to Stephen for the answer

  24. Agree with much of the above:
    – 1d my favourite, made me smile
    – 24s very tricky, but got there in the end
    – 8d needed the hints for the parsing
    – 4d my nemesis, couldn’t get beyond synonyms for a telling off, the adjective didn’t occur to me
    All in all a challenging but excellent puzzle, Ray T never disappoints.
    Thanks to him and StephenL

  25. Ray T, how do you manage it? It used to be seven. Now it’s just 6 words or less per clue – and everyone a masterpiece. I’m in awe! Thank you so much for the continuing Thursday entertainment.
    Like Kath I got stuck on the wrong rollicking so thanks to StephenL for the hint.

  26. An easy RayT for me, and elegantly-clued. The brevity is rather fun too, though why he insists on it is beyond me. Perhaps it is a personal discipline thing?

    Many thanks to Ray and StephenL.

  27. Evening all. My thanks again to StephenL for the analysis and to everybody for your comments. Incidentally, Chambers gives:
    1 kind, gentle, caring, humane, generous, benevolent, considerate, compassionate, merciful, sympathetic, warm, kindly, fond, affectionate, loving, amorous, romantic, sentimental, emotional, evocative, sensitive, vulnerable, tender-hearted, soft-hearted


    1. Good evening, Mr T. I knew I shouldn’t doubt you but on this occasion it just didn’t ‘feel’ right. I shall consider myself duly chastised!

      1. Now, why don’t I get such a reaction when I “chastise” someone in a similar fashion? :-)

  28. Nice crossword tricky in places 😃 ***/**** Favourites 1 & 3d 🤔 Did not get the correct answer for 6d, loved the cartoon 24a. thanks to Stephen and to the Compiler

  29. I enjoyed today’s Ray T but failed to parse 22a and 4d. Noted the comments above regarding said clues. Many thanks to Mr T and Stephen L. A loud hello to Kath and many congratulations to Daisygirl.

  30. Solved on the journey back (strict instructions from the driver not to nod off) from sunny Yorkshire having had a lovely round on the Blackmoor course at Moor Allerton. I thought our Thursday maestro a tad more demanding that of late & it took me to *** time to crack it with 24d the last tricky blighter to yield. Another vote for 1d as top of the pops & with 4&6d in the medals.
    Thanks to RT & SL + TTFK.

  31. Like others the dastardly 24’s were last in and cotd was 1d. Thanks to Rayt and SL.

  32. For a RayT I did well with only 4d needing the hints.

    Particularly enjoyed 1d, but it almost caused me to put fish in for 2d…

    As with others spent way too long to get the 24s.

    8d was a bung in and I only realised the difficulty parsing when reading the comments above.

  33. Thank you Stephen L for the hints to get me 8 d and parsing 4d. Tougher for me than most it seems.
    COTD 6d for me, got a little giggle. I have no quibble with 22a, and no problem with 24a (perhaps being a granimal doctor helps). Many thanks Ray T.

  34. Finished
    At last.
    Went to bed with just 4d to get.
    Woke up.
    Got it.
    So, *****plus/*****
    Thanks Ray T and Stephen L.

  35. I left 4d until this morning so looked at it again after I’d Wordled. Then looked at Stephen’s hint. Never would have got it. Didn’t even have a do’h moment! Got the 24ds and whilst not familiar with generous/tender it just had to be. I’m not complaining and thought there were some excellent clues. Thanks all.

  36. Like some others, beaten by the 24s.despite having alternate letters.
    COTD was 1d. A former girlfriend of Morse I remember.

  37. In 15a isn’t ‘butcher’s’ an adjective not a verb? As in ‘a butcher’s hook’ – rhyming slang for ‘look’.

  38. 3*/4*…..
    liked 20A “A battle fixing toilet after flood (8)” amongst others.

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