DT 30059 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30059 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30059 (Hints)

The Saturday Crossword Club (hosted by crypticsue)

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Turning to the back page of the paper to find out whether I’d got a Cephas or a Chalicea crossword to both hint and then prepare a full review, I found an advert for watches! Once I’d refolded the paper, it didn’t take long to decide that once again we have a Cephas pangram.

Tilsit once again sends his apologies for absence. He travelled to Munich yesterday and arrived in the middle of a flash flood.  By the time he’d dried off, he was late sending  the Quarterly Prize Puzzle (by Radler) to Mr K for him to post and so this will be hear later.  Fans of Chalicea will be delighted to know she’s on NTSPP duty today.

As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, an assortment of clues, including some of the more difficult ones, have been selected and hints provided for them.

Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”. Where the hint describes a construct as “usual” this means that more help can be found in The Usual Suspects, which gives a number of the elements commonly used in the wordplay. Another useful page is Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing, which features words with meanings that are not always immediately obvious.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions.

Some hints follow.


1a    Struggle to capture good clear picture (8)
A verb meaning to struggle ‘captures’ the abbreviation for good and an adjective meaning clear of all charges

11a    Road, although not smooth, decidedly driveable in the end (12)
A poetic way of saying although, an adjective meaning not smooth, a synonym for decidedly and the end letter of driveable

16a    Something green almost exhausted (4)
Something green is almost all of a way of saying exhausted or weary

20a    Maid swaps a name, becoming another woman? (6)
Swap over the A and N in the name of a Maid much beloved by Robin Hood

21a    Shrub to finish amongst seaweed (8)
A synonym for finish inserted into (amongst) some edible seaweed

28a    Generous giving in Scotland’s capital, we hear (8)
A homophone (we hear) of the way we might describe the capital letter of Scotland


2d    One is unable to get off at night with this (8)
A cryptic definition of a cause of sleeplessness

5d    Second hearing (4)
A cryptic definition of a reflected sound (which you’d hear twice or more)

6d    Morass of papers about meeting (8)
A quantity of paper goes about an abbreviated meeting

8d    Such a person does not necessarily look sad (4-4)
Although the colour associated with sadness is part of the description of either someone who can do no wrong or someone with that colour organs of sight, they may not necessarily look that sad

16d    One-piece athletic wear? (4,4)
A one-piece item of clothing that sounds like it could be worn when being athletic

25d    Pronounced fit, a murder victim! (4)
The name of the first murder victim in the Bible sounds like (pronounced) a synonym for fit


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The Quick Crossword pun: HIGH + BURN + EIGHT = HIBERNATE

83 comments on “DT 30059 (Hints)

  1. Another Cephas offering? Possibly because it’s a pangram and so it looks like this could well be our regular SPP setter. Anyway, another great puzzle with much to like such as 1a and 11a. I wasn’t sure about 20a but can’t see it being anything else given the parsing. I have a feeling that 28a is an old chestnut but it gets my vote for COTD.

    Many thanks to Cephas – if it be said setter – for the fun. Huge thanks to Cryptic Sue for the hints and for standing in for the wet Tilsit.

    1. Just realised that I got 20a wrong so no pen – again! In fact, no pen in over forty years of sending in solutions to the SPP. :cry:

  2. For once, in my nearly three years of doing cryptics, the fact that I was solving a likely pangram came to my rescue, with 16d, and I made my merry way to a happy finish, although 20a held me up for a few moments as my LOI because I was thinking generically, not specifically. 28a may be an old chestnut, but I love the word and love using it, so it’s my favourite today. Thanks to CS for the hints, which I didn’t need, and to Cephas. **/***

    1. I struggled with that at first, but my new Bradford’s Crossword Solver’s Dictionary came to the rescue.

        1. Mrs Bradford helps you find synonyms – the BRB defines the word, so they work well in combination. Chambers Crossword Dictionary is a good buy too – not least because it lists the synonyms by number of letters in the word

          1. Thank you, Sue. I have Chambers Crossword Dictionary but admit I do not use it. After what you have said, I will start doing so before throwing in the towel.

        2. Missed yourcomment as Mama Bee wanted to go shop.
          I don’t think that Bradford’s is better than a BRB but in tandem they work well as Sue said. I am not sure if I should get a new BRB though as they are quite pricey and the app version of Chambers dictionary and thesaurus is very good

  3. I hope you all will forgive me dropping in a personal note but our little cat did become a feature here in recent years.
    Sadly, Lola died yesterday. She was fourteen and had been very unwell in recent months with vets increasingly unable to offer any viable solutions. Her lungs were only operating at 10% and she hadn’t eaten for the last eight days. She had become desperately thin, and it is believed she had developed a form of cancer. Yesterday evening the vet recommended that there was only one kind solution. I was with her to her last breath.

    Sorry to be the bearer of sad news, and I apologise for hijacking the blog to bring this update. Thank you to everyone who has been so kind about little Lola through the years and understood my devotion to her.

    1. My sympathy. It’s always a difficult time when loved pets leave us. My greyhound is aging fast and I am dreading making the decision once again even if you know it’s the right thing to do. Just look back at all the pleasure they have given us and I am sure they appreciated the care and love we gave them.

    2. Oh, poor Lola! I am so very sorry to hear of her death. As you said, Terence she became quite a feature on the blog as we all rooted for her during her illness. Thankfully, because of your care and attention, she had a longer and happy life. She was our mascot and will always be remembered with affection.

      The loss of a beloved pet is awful and my thoughts are with you.

    3. Such terribly sad news, Terence, what a heart-breaking experience for you. I hope you can take some comfort from the knowledge that you have done everything possible for her over the past few years and were then brave enough to let her go in order to spare her suffering.

    4. I’m sorry to hear that Terence. I enjoyed your regular updates and rooted for little Lola as did so many here.

    5. I’m so very sorry to hear about little Lola, Terence, and send you my sympathy – I know what a big hole she will leave in your life.

    6. Oh, no. So sad to hear about Lola, Terence. She brightened many a day for all of us, and you were a fine, loving guardian for her.

    7. So sad and so sorry to read your news of Lola. This is always the very hardest part of pet owning, that we have to make this decision and let them go. The last time I did ask my vet why animals just never seem to pass away on their own. He said they very rarely do. Many sympathies.

    8. Oh, Terence, I’m shattered! Lola was ours, she belonged to all of us, our mascot. I’m so glad you were with her at the end. Godspeed with a fair wind, Lola.

    9. I am so sorry to hear that. When our lovely little cat was lost to us at the age of only a few months, owing to an incurable illness, I was completely devastated. I think it is clearly possible for a very deep bond to exist between pets and their owners, and that it can be extremely distressing when the animal dies. I do empathise with you.

    10. Terence, that is such sad news. This must be a very hard time for you. Lola was so lucky to have found you and I’m sure that she appreciated the wonderful life you gave her.

    11. So sorry to read the sad news Terence. It’s always a time of reflection and memories and it is those memories and the care and attention we have given over many years that cheer us in our loss.

    12. I’m so sorry to hear that, I think we all adopted a little bit of the lovely Lola. Your love and care for her was clear to see.

    13. Dear Terence just catching up with the blog and read your sad news regarding Lola. Really feel for your sad loss. Our pets become an integral part of the family and it’s so painful to say goodbye. I think so many of us followed your regular updates during her illness and felt we had got to know her so well. RIP Lola you will be sadly missed by us all but most especially by your master.

    14. My condolences, Terence – it is never easy to lose a beloved pet, but worth the pain for the years of companionship. RIP Lola. 💐

  4. Oh how sad, I know how much she meant to you and the blog. I hope in time you have room in your home and heart for another furry friend.

    1. So sorry to hear the news, Terence . She will be sorely missed by some of us crossworders, but most oof all by you. You can pride yourself on the manner in which you improved her quality of life and you were with her to the end . No one can do more. She will live on in memories for you and your family.

  5. Typically tough Saturday but with thought very solvable except for 1a as it is a word I am not familiar with, so something I have learned. Loved 28a which made me smile with my love of all things punnish. Thought 24d was weak and a little uncertain of the connection between hype in 19d with the answer although the definition is clear.
    Thx to all

      1. I failed to scroll down the entry in the BRB and never heard that definition before. New to me but if it’s in the BRB it’s a fair clue.

  6. Thought this tough but fair. spotting the pangram early helped enormously. Still struggling with the synonym in 11a. Thankyous to Cephas and CS.

  7. Great puzzle, so cleverly clued.
    Last in 20a, but the parsing dawned on me long after completion.
    That is, if I can use the word completion in this context.
    So, ***?/*****
    Many thanks, Cephas and CS.

      1. It can be helpful to reply when you click on the ‘thingie’ (that says reply) then everything keeps all nicely tied up together.

  8. Friendly pangram containing a few old chestnuts to help solvers on their way. Thought 20a was somewhat odd but still plenty to raise a smile. 1&11a took the honours here with 6,12&19d hard on their heels.

    Thanks to Cephas and to CS for all the extra duties.

  9. A subtly clued Pangram, which I noticed for a change, with some deceptively simple clues and some amusing ones. I liked 27a, 28a, 1a and my COTD, 6d. Thanks to Cephas and to CS for stepping in to do the clues.

  10. As is often the case, the bark was worse than the bite and soon it all began to come
    together. Not sure about 20a. Coincidentally another shrub anagrams from different seaweed and the same finish but of course that wouldn’t fiit the clue. Thank you Cephas and the trusty CS.

  11. Another Cephas puzzle that was ‘shouting’ pangram very early on but like Tipcat I thought some of the clues were vague – **/***.

    Candidates for favourite 13a, 23a, and 28a – and the winner is 28a.

    I thought there might be some comments from our ‘geography buffs’ on 3d but apparently none so far.

    Condolences to Terence on the passing of Lola.

    Thanks to Cephas and CS.

    1. I did notice 3d, Senf and, with my teacher hat on (I’ve never had a mortar-board actually), I was a little dubious about the accuracy of the clue. Im sure a few of the bloggers from your neck of the woods felt the same! I’ll leave it at that, lest the naughty step beckons.

      1. I was somewhat incensed at first but with some further thought and some e-research I was able to justify 3d, one of the vague clues for me, but I will save my thoughts for the full review on Friday.

  12. I didn’t find any of it vague. I suspect that we sometimes think a clue is weak or vague when we have not parsed it. I had a happy run through and was left with 1 and 20a. Is was then solved with a trawl through the alphabet. With the checkers and the knowledge that tge third letter had to fit somewhere it was soon solved. 20a stumped me. The answer was one of several that would fit. Once I looked at the hint and realised that we were looking at a particular Maid I thought it a fine clue. Lots of rings on paper 13 27 and 28a and 5 6 8 12 and 25d.

  13. I haven’t got the puzzle in front of me but two held out to the very end – one was the Christmas Present and the short one across in the middle of that word. I realised it was a pangram and then realised which letter was missing so the present landed in my lap with a very loud ‘doh’! All in all a very enjoyable romp so thanks to the setter and CS.

  14. Very pleasant Saturday lunchtime diversion, completed in the garden with a nice salad and a glass of something alcoholic provided by my beloved husband. What could be nicer? Saddened to hear about dear old Lila though, she will become a legend. Pangram spotted early in which helped. 28a made me laugh. Many thanks to the Setter and Cryptic Sue – I must say it is impressive the way you Hinters all rally round and jump into breaches where necessary. (Had to correct predictive spelling as they wanted you to jump into breeches which is not appropriate !)

  15. The pangram helped us too with this fine and enjoyable crossword. Favourite was 6d. Thanks to Cephas and CS.

  16. Found this a bit of a tough one today, even though it seemed like it was a Cephas offering, with the pangram indicators showing.
    3*/3* today

    Favourites include 1a, 11a, 13a & 8d with winner 1a … the photographer in me sussed that one out.

    Thanks to Cephas and CS

    Sad to hear of Terence’s loss … it is always hard to say goodbye, especially when you have to make the choice for the good of your companion … so, so hard.

  17. Help with 1 across, please. I always see (and spell) ‘clear’ with one ‘t’. Shouldn’t there be an indicator to show that two ‘ts’ is rather old-fashioned?

  18. Difficult for me on a warm day particularly after a late night yesterday.
    It felt a bit odd to be talking about Christmas gifts on a hot day but never mind.
    My last one was 24d – how silly – not the hardest clue in the whole crossword.
    Thanks to Cephas for the crossword and to CS for sorting out the hints.

  19. Another pleasant Cephas crossword. Tricky in places, but quite doable. Weekends always make us work a little harder, when there is no click button for the answer. COTD shared by 28a and 12d, although I realise 28a is a frequent visitor. Thanks to Cephas and CrypticSue. Off to print up the Chalice now. My cup runneth over.

  20. A belated thanks to both Cephas and CS for the entertainment. I thought this was a stiffer challenge than usual for a Saturday and I greatly enjoyed it. 6d was my LOI and favourite.

    I have just read the thread about Lola. My deepest sympathies to Terence. We have all been there and it never gets any easier.

  21. I started off well today but after about half way ground to a standstill. A break and lunch helped a lot but I missed the pangram and needed some help from CS. Got there in the end, though and overall enjoyed it.
    Not sure I fully understand 20a but I am sure all will be revealed in the review.

    Thanks to Cephas for brightening up a rather dull Saturday and to CS for her great hints.

  22. Thanks to Cephas for an enjoyable puzzle, and to CS because (a) I now know what a pangram is and (b) I understand why some of my answers were right! 28a may be an old chestnut to some, but was new to me, and a definite favourite.

  23. A dnf thanks to 27a and 6d.

    For some reason the dry bit of 27a always trips me up.

    An enjoyable challenge nonetheless.

    Thanks to all.

  24. I was half way through the crossword and muttered to myself ‘there’s no way this is a pangram’ and then I looked at the top of the page (sorry Miffypops, I still print my crossword!) and it was Tuesday’s toughie…and a jolly good crossword it was too!
    So back to today, well it was a pangram, of course, and also a very enjoyable solve.
    Thanks to Cephas and Cryptic Sue.

  25. Thank you to Madame for holding the fort for me. It’s been a really odd break for a variety of reasons I won’t bore you all with, but I’m in Munich for a few days before an overnight in Koln and then home.

    Arrived here in the middle of a flash food so got thoroughly drenched – never experienced rain where it felt like you were under a waterfall.

    1. We experienced a similar “waterfall” in Baltimore. It was so bad we now call very heavy downpours “Baltimores”.

  26. Away in London house-sitting for family with cat-sitting duties as well. Cannot access the house printer do having to do it online. Only discovered today how to save the partly done puzzle so it’s the first one I finished since Tuesday. Very enjoyable with 1a favourite.

    Thanks to Cephas and CS and I hope Tilsit has now dried out.

  27. That was a challenging test. Last two in were 28a and 1a – I finally managed to dredge up 1a from somewhere deep down in memory. Many thanks to Cephas.

  28. I found this difficult today but looking at the comments I think it must be me. Didn’t spot the pangram so once I read the hints and saw that it was I managed to complete it. Thank you for the hints crypticsue and to our setter.

  29. Got there in the end and 20a last in although I though of it early on and didn’t trust myself. Bit like multiple choice questions at school!

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