DT 30073 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30073

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30073

Hints and tips by Mr K

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BD Rating  -  Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

Hello, everyone, and welcome to Tuesday. I’d like to say that I solved this engaging and enjoyable puzzle completely unaided. I really would. But I can’t, because I had to turn to reference materials to make sense of some of the final down clues. On the flip side, I have learned several exotic new words. But even more puzzling than some of those answers is how the setter managed to get a crossword containing twelve complete or partial anagrams past the editor. Unless the setter is our editor? Perhaps we will find out later. 

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    Captain Nemo and I fighting to get freedom for slaves? (12)
EMANCIPATION:  An anagram (fighting) of CAPTAIN NEMO I 

Abraham Lincoln famously produced the 1a Proclamation. I'm not 100% sure that the cat is authentic ...

8a    A horse and sheep? One's above and below! (7)
ANAGRAM:  Link together A from the clue, a sometimes derogatory term for a horse, and a male sheep. The definition refers to the clues printed immediately above and below this one 

An illustration of the clue

9a    Gucci (topless) with bus transported she-devils (7)
SUCCUBI:  An anagram (transported) of all but the first letter (topless) of GUCCI and BUS. It’s hard to believe that anyone thought the illustration below was a good way to advertise a bus service. The outcry was immediate and the campaign only lasted long enough to fill the internet with pictures like this one 

Topless people on buses

11a   Fit a wood-processing machine? (7)
CHIPPER:  Double definition. The first is an informal adjective meaning fit or well 

12a   Brown, put back in act, stripped (7)
DENUDED:  The reversal (put back) of a brown colour is inserted in a synonym of act 

13a   Childminder getting one's goat? (5)
NANNY:  A childminder who might be a nurse is also a goat 

14a   Showing the removal of old Scots people? (9)
DEPICTING:  Whimsically, the answer, perhaps split (2-7) for clarity, could describe the removal of an ancient people who inhabited Scotland in Roman times 

16a   Lacking aesthetic judgement in how food may appear after Covid (9)
TASTELESS:  A double definition.  The second refers to a possible symptom of Covid 

19a   The late archbishop's skirts? (5)
TUTUS:  The late South African archbishop with his S from the clue 

The Archbishop with another famous person

21a   Former pupil with view that's disgusting (7)
OBSCENE:  Follow the abbreviation for a former male pupil with a view or vista 

23a   Old Turkish official fed fine cooking (7)
EFFENDI:  An anagram (cooking) of FED FINE. Read about the answer here 

24a   Sister I left, somewhat lacking in creativity (7)
STERILE:  The answer is hiding inside (… somewhat) the first three words of the clue 

25a   I shout, absorbing loud echo returning in part of glacier (3,4)
ICE FALL:  I from the clue and shout or exclaim containing (absorbing) the reversal (returning) of the fusion of the musical abbreviation for loud and the letter represented in the NATO phonetic alphabet by echo 

26a   Doctor and city tried to obtain proof of citizenship (8,4)
IDENTITY CARD:  An anagram (doctor) of AND CITY TRIED 



1d    Auntie, perhaps, runs out in euphoria (7)
ELATION:  What auntie defines by example (perhaps) minus the cricket abbreviation for runs (runs out

2d    A prize for wasting? (7)
ATROPHY:  A from the clue with a prize that could be a cup or a little statue

The prize could be like this

3d    City has Mayor's first bird flying in enclosure (9)
CAMBRIDGE:  The first letter of MAYOR with an anagram (flying) of BIRD are inserted together in an enclosure (for a bird, perhaps)

4d    Sat and asked a question? (5)
POSED:  A straightforward double definition 

5d    Unusual niche in training college at first for practical skill (7)
TECHNIC:  An anagram (unusual) of NICHE is inserted between (in) the initial letters (… at first) of TRAINING COLLEGE 

6d    Religious group with Oedipus complex (4,3)
OPUS DEI:  An anagram (complex) of OEDIPUS. Read about the answer here 

7d    You may need these when arranging vacation in Santa Cruz, initially (12)
VACCINATIONS:  The wordplay directs us to an anagram (arranging) of VACATION IN and the initial letters of SANTA CRUZ. The entire clue could serve as a definition (at least for some locations in Santa Cruz) 

10d   Edible? It's gin, stupid -- it can't be eaten! (12)
INDIGESTIBLE:  An anagram (stupid) of EDIBLE IT’S GIN 

Oh yes it can. At least if you have access to German confectionery

15d   Bill takes it? Yes, primarily for those who will come after (9)
POSTERITY:  A bill that could be an advertisement is followed by IT from the clue and first letter (… primarily) of YES 

17d   Son ends up going off to stay for a while (7)
SUSPEND:  The genealogical abbreviation for son with an anagram (going off) of ENDS UP

18d   Fetes I announce in periodical? Quite the opposite! (7)
ETESIAN:  The quite the opposite tells us to invert the first part of the clue to read “Periodical in fetes I announce”. The required “periodical” is then found hiding in the remainder of the clue. The answer is explained here 

19d   Fabric in Welsh river with letter from Greece pinned to it (7)
TAFFETA:  A Welsh river followed by a letter in the Greek alphabet 

The blue bits of the dress are 19d

20d   Town lady, short of oxygen, getting agitated in Parliament (7)
TYNWALD:  An anagram (agitated) of TOWN LADY minus (short of) the chemical symbol for oxygen. The answer is explained here 

22d   Emile concocted a fragrant substance (5)
ELEMI:  An anagram (concocted) of EMILE. The answer is explained here 

This resin is the source of 22d


Thanks to today’s setter. I found lots to like here. Particularly noteworthy were 14a, 21a, 7d, 10d, 17d, and 20d. The Quickie Pun got proceedings off to a great start as well (some of our foreign readers might be wondering about the significance of the answer. It’s explained here).  Which clues did you like best?

The Quick Crossword pun:  MINED + THUG + APP = MIND THE GAP

98 comments on “DT 30073

  1. To me, this felt a bit dated. I can’t pinpoint why that is but there you go. Maybe it’s the use of such words as 11a. It was a word used by a very “proper” friend of mine as in “Oh, I say, he’s a bit 11a”. For the life of me I cannot get 18d despite having all the checkers. I will have to resort to the hints for that one. Otherwise, a steady solve with my COTD being he topical 16a.

    Many thanks to the setter for the challenge and many thanks to Mr. K. for the hints.

                    1. These predictive text apps are amazing. How on earth does one get “outlet” from “lurker”?

                    2. Years ago I worked with someone with the surname of Hargreaves. PT always changed it to Dr Waterfalls – infuriating.

                    3. Love ‘Dr Waterfalls’, Manders!

                      I had a right old tussle with 18d but got there in the end.

                      Loved the anagram fest. Right up my strasse.

                  1. Hi SC – forgot to say it was my last one in and I had all the cross checkers – but I have to admit it was the coincidence of seeing the lurker and no knowledge of the word or if it existed!

                    1. My brain isn’t wired for picking out unknown words in lurkers, NAS. Even if I’d used Miffypops’ maxim, I wouldn’t have seen it.

      1. Nor me Steve – and sadly I still cannot make any sense of it despite the hint – otherwise a largely problem free solve – even at this lateish hour.. Not my favourite puzzle by a long shot, but thank you to setter and hinter alike.

  2. Like our blogger, I shot through this then bunged in the two down clues remaining. A bit of an anagramfest for sure, but some were really good, like my favourite this morning, 1a.

    My thanks to both Misters involved.

    I would just add that I heartily and completely endorse the comments by Tilsit and the rest of the Big 5 in the posting above today’s crossword.

    1. Glad the anagrams went down well – they are a favourite of mine, if well-constructed; and hopefully, they can be humorous, too. (BTW: the anagrams, in total, were not “smuggled past” the Editor – he likes a good anagram as well as most of you do!) The other thing I always wonder about is some people’s adverse reactions to “lesser-known” words: but how else does one increase one’s vocabulary? If the clue is fair and well-constructed, it should lead to the correct word, even if you haven’t ever come across it: and then, surely, you’ve gained something…? (And sometimes, to be honest, when constructing the grid, one is left with very little option as to which word can fit the remaining spaces/letters – thus often, it’s Hobson’s Choice: and one just has to grit one’s teeth and clue it as best one can!)

      1. Couldn’t agree more, XT. Here’s what I said in 2016:

        December 17, 2016 at 12:48 pm
        G. I wrote this comment on DT 28234

        There’s quite a lot of talk on here about stretched synonyms and obscure words, so I penned this pertinent adage: Lament not at the of reading an unknown word – but rejoice that it can be yours on a later day.

        But I only got castigated for it…

      2. Hello, X-Type. Thanks for dropping in and for a fun puzzle to solve and to blog. My intro comment about the editor was not serious – we know that CL vets everything carefully. But since many of us were under the impression that the maximum number of anagrams is usually limited by convention to six or seven, twelve was a surprise. Also surprising is that, like some other commenters here, I didn’t actually register there were more than usual until I counted them after completing the blog. Regarding those fairly-clued lesser-known answers, I believe almost all of us are happy to learn new words. Please keep them coming.

        Still smiling about 14a and the Quickie Pun. Both were inspired.

        1. Mr K and X-Type….sounds like the next Bond Baddies.

          I’m with The Big X all the way about learning new words. 9a and 18d are magnificent.

          1. I welcome learning new words – even as I approach eighty – but I do like to understand them and I still cannot understand the meaning of18d to equate to anything within the clue – so okay, at my age senility rules okay :-) :-)

            1. The Chambers Dictionary entry for the 18d answer is:

              – Periodical
              – Blowing at stated seasons, such as certain winds, esp the NW winds of summer in the Aegean

  3. It’s learn a new word day! I found 3 allin the BRB and had to make use of Mr Google for some help with GK. it was fascinating but time-consuming and, whilst I got satisfaction out of getting tgere in rhe end, it was a bit of a slog. I enjoyed the plethora of anagrams, though, especially 8a, 1a and 10d. Thanks to Mr K for the hints and well done, that can’thave been easy. Thanks also to the compiler.

  4. A lot of anagrams and some old chestnuts , it was quite solvable.
    I am a bit tired of the relation/elation combo.
    But 18d , what on earth ?
    16a is a good clue.
    Thanks to all concerned.

  5. A fun puzzle today,8a was a unique clue for me.
    Remembered the late bishop Desmond in19a,and the song- don’t mess with my tutu!
    Favourite was the 3d charade and liked the surfaces of 20d and16a.
    Not familier with 18d-looked it up and this provided the parsing of the hidden word.
    Going for a **/****.Thanks to Mr K for the pics

  6. I loved today’s quickie pun! I gave up at first (trying variations of 2 words and 3 words in a variety of accents) but gave up, then it came to me later, with a massive smile. Thank you to the setter for that, and to Mr K for explaining the cryptic clues that were beyond me.

        1. Or “Away with ya, man, mined thug app, pet!”

          Or “Calm down! Calm down! Mined thug app, our kid!”

          Better call it a day, now …

          1. I see only to be able to imagine the phrase used in the accent of the recorded voice on the London Underground.

            In a Geordie accent it’d need to be “Stand clear of the doors, please”, as announced on the Metro there — I’ll be impressed if a setter gets that into a quickie pun!

            1. The Wikipedia link I attached to the pun discusses the voices used for the Underground announcements. I had no idea there was so much history associated with them.

    1. *Hope you don’t mind me jesting, Smylers, but the thought of you sitting there saying that pun in a variety of (maybe contrived/exaggerated) UK accents does conjure up a potentially very amusing scenario. Especially ones like Welsh, Brummie and Scouse. Hope no-one was secretly eavesdropping!

  7. 1*/2.5*. The large number of anagrams made this a relatively easy solve. Only 18d, my last one in, was a new word for me – when all else fails, look for a lurker.

    Thanks to the setter and to Mr K.

  8. A very naughty and cunning lurker put me into 2* time.
    I followed my rule, if in doubt and as a last resort, check lurker.
    8a my COTD in a very strong field.
    Many thanks to the setter and to Mr. K.

  9. I have a “Mind the Gap” doormat, and for years, several of us have practised saying it “like the Man in the Underground”, but no one has come close yet. Oh yes, the puzzle: I went through the entire alphabet with 18d once I had all the checking letters, and the only thing that made any sense was the answer I bunged in, correctly as it turns out. (I think I’ve seen the word a few times but it was ‘periodical’ that kept throwing me–as I’m sure the setter wished). I liked the 1a and 6d anagrams but have no COTD today. Thanks to Mr K for all of his extracurricular efforts and to today’s setter. ***/***

  10. Like others, the “if all else fails” rule helped me across the line with 18d. That was one of four new words for me (along with 9a, 20d and 22d) but all very gettable from the wordplay and checking letters.
    So in my opinion a very enjoyable puzzle as I love solving a clue and then learning a new word or piece of GK – 19d being a great example.
    I hadn’t picked up in the number of anagrams but that didn’t spoil my enjoyment and I thought 1a was brilliant so that’s my COTD
    Thanks to the setter and Mr K

  11. Despite the quite excessive number of anagrams I really enjoyed this super puzzle, my good fortune being tuning in immediately and flying through it with smiles and ticks appearing hither and thither. I felt quite 11a afterwards! Only delay was 18d, my LOI, confirming online that what I believed to be the answer was, and that I had parsed it correctly.

    Hon Mentions to 1a, 19a, 7d, 15d, 18d (chapeau to the setter, a brilliantly clever clue) & 20d, with COTD to 14a, which was a loud laugh-out-loud indeed.

    1* / 4.5*

    Many thanks indeed to the Setter and to Mr K

  12. The anagrams were a big help and so was the BRB for some answers in the South and one in the North, that is why it was purchased, but no problems with Welsh rivers and Manx parliaments. A five letter anagram is marginally better than the three or four letter versions, by one or two letters, and with its three checkers in place there were only two options for BRB verification and the first one ‘tested’ was correct. Overall, an enjoyable challenge – **/****.

    Candidates for favourite – 8a, 11a, 16a, 2d, and 17d – and the winner is 11a.

    Thanks to the setter and Mr K

  13. This was a bit of a curate’s egg with some plain-sailing but combined with some vocabulary lapses e.g. 9a, 23a, 25a, 18d and 22d but reassuring that MrK also had hesitations (thank you MrG for saving my day!). SE corner held out longest. My Fav was ingenious 8a. Thank you Messrs Ron and K.

  14. A slightly bizarre but amusing puzzle. Fun to solve. I could ‘do a Brian’ over a couple of obscurities but it’s just a crossword.

    Thanks to the setter and The Celebrated Mr K.

    Beatles on Tuesday (inspired by the clue for 8a)
    Paul McCartney – Heart Of The Country

  15. I’m another who was grateful for reference books and Mr G today. Such a relief to see that even Mr K had to use a little outside help for this one.
    My top three weren’t mind-blowingly difficult but all made me smile – 14&21a plus 2d.

    Thanks to our setter – it would be lovely if you popped in to claim ownership – and to Mr K for the review and links to background information, always much appreciated.

    1. Just for your info, X-Type claimed this puzzle in comment 2 as a reply to Young Salopian;
      3*/4* is my rating and
      I liked 14A “Showing the removal of old Scots people? (9)” .

  16. Excellent puzzle which I found far easier than yesterdays. Two new words in 20d and 22d but nicely clued and Google confirms.
    18d puzzled me for the full explanation but the hints sorted that out and my favourite by a long way was 14a!
    Thx to all.

  17. How some words nudge the brain.
    23a immediately transported me back to my youth and the Hotspur. The Wolf of Kabul and his servant, who’s weapon of choice was a cricket bat.
    Great puzzle.
    14a favourite.
    Ta to all.

  18. As Mustafa said, ticks and smiles all the way. Whilst everything with eminently solvable, a Google was required to check the recurrent offending official, the Parliament. We have a different word in our house for my periodically recurrent wind but 18d will do.
    Smile of the day to 14a.
    Thanks MrK and the setter.

    1. I don’t normally comment on the back paper, but dropped in to see if others were stumped by 18d, which clearly they were. An unusual construction of a lurker and a properly obscure word makes it more of a Friday Toughie clue, and I suggest more than compensates for an abundance of anagrams. This, plus a harder-than-normal-on-Tuesday Toughie have made today a challenging day.

      1. FR, there’s a very unusual/clever lurker spread between 2 clues in yesterday’s Rookie Corner puzzle. The “split/indirect” lurker (the 10a answer) is found skulking between the first word of 10a and the answer to 19a. Very ingenious!

  19. Thoroughly enjoyed this puzzle. It’s reassuring to know that if I dig deep enough there are many obscure words still buried in my grey matter. 14a and 19a made me chuckle, and 2 new words, 18d and 22d, to try and remember. What’s not to like?

    1. Welcome, and thanks for sharing your experience with the puzzle. I hope that you’ll keep commenting.

  20. A very enjoyabpempuzzle today. Like others I found the lurker at 18d then had to look it up in the BRB to check.

    As you might expect my favourite clue was 14a.

    Thanks to the setter and Mr K

  21. Seemed like the sort of puzzle that would have a nina. Surprised to see nothing forced some of those word choices. Apart from the wind the SE was last to fall.

    1. Agree with your first sentence – I spent a while starting at the completed grid but couldn’t spot anything. I also researched whether there was such a thing as International Anagram Day (there’s not).

  22. I initially thought I was on the setters wavelength then realised I definitely wasn’t.

    A few new words for me, but an enjoyable challenge nonetheless.

    Thanks to all.

  23. We went out this morning and still had 19a and 20d to do./Unfortunately read the comments over lunch and spotted the comment about the Archbishop, but hands up, may not have got it anyway. Enjoyed this puzzle so thanks to the setter and Mr K for the cat pictures – no moan from me this week.

  24. Aye, very enjoyable but then I like anagrams. It is amazing how the brain will serve up words you have not seen or used for forty years, quite reassuring although I have never come across 18d.
    I am reading Sweet Caress by William Boyd – absolutely fascinating.
    Many thanks to the setter and to Mr K and his cats – nice to see the University with a city mentioned (as opposed to the city with a University) 😺

  25. What a nice crossword and some new words as well 😃 ***/**** Difficult Today to choose favourites but 9a, 2d and 3d were in there 🤗 Thanks to Mr K for the blog and the clever links thanks also to the Compiler 🤔 I do wish he would reveal himself ( In the nicest possible way of course 😳)

  26. I found today’s an excellent offering and fun to solve. I think it must be a record for anagrams. I counted ten and two partials. Numerous COTD candidates but I’m going with 7d. Thanks to the setter and Mr K for the blog and cat shots. 🦇

  27. With two to do (24a, and not surprisingly 18d) I thought ‘Wot? No Lurkers?’. How wrong could I be! My COTD is 8a.

        1. Ah – I do have an inkling. I could, of course, be wrong but the “inkling” is quite strong. 😀😀

  28. The SW corner was the last to fall. Well, not surprising looking at 18d. I agree that 11a is a little old fashioned. When did anyone last use it?
    1a was my COTD. An excellent anagram,

    1. I frequently use it in both the “feeling positive” and “wood cutting implement” senses of the word – and age-wise I was still some way off starting at kindergarten when The Beatles broke up …. :)

  29. An odd puzzle for me only in that there were so many anagrams, and 18D is an astonishingly hard find for a daily puzzle. Everything else completely, well, normal, but was I very slightly discomfited with this one? Maybe.

    Whatever, I’d love to know who today’s Mister Ron might be.

  30. Well this was not a puzzle I had any chance of completing. So many words in this one that are not in my vocabulary.
    They are 9a, 23a, 18d, 20d & 22d
    As well, the definition in 14a was new to me as well and dated, perhaps?
    Officially a DNF without the cheats and hints and I still don’t parse 18d
    For me today 4*/1*
    SW was last are completed … obviously with hints and cheats.

    Not a puzzle for me I’m afraid. Very obscure and I don’t even have a favourite clue today as nothing stands out for me.

    Thanks to setter and for Mr K (who I see had trouble with it too)

  31. I found this quite difficult with the island government and the well hidden periodic winds throwing me into extra time. These are not topics of general discussion in my neck of the woods (Vancouver Island). I managed to solve it before logging into the blog but required electronic help for some spellings and definitions. Thanks to Mr. K and to the setter.

  32. The plethora of anagrams made this a */**** for me with guessable new words thrown in. Brilliant and loved the non anagram anagram relevant clue! Thanks to the setter and our excellent hinter.

  33. I enjoyed most of this, but I was never going to complete unaided, with 9a, 18a, 20a, 22d completely new to me, and 23a buried so deep in the murky recesses I could not recall it. Even though I could see 9a was an anagram, I did have to goggle it but just got an endless stream of information of some band called She Devils 😊. But 1a was one of those delightful anagrams when you don’t even have to put to paper to figure it out, and 2d was wonderfully cryptic. 11a will forever make me think of Fargo. Thanks to the setter and Mr K. Have a great Tuesday everyone.

        1. I did warn you :) Clearly leaving it out of the hints was the right decision. One needs to watch the whole movie to get the (dark) humour in this scene.

  34. A couple of new words but both very fairly clued so for me a tasty dessert after the mighty main course of the Robyn Toughie.
    I quite liked chipper and nanny as both made me smile and I thought 7d very cleverly constructed.
    Many thanks to X-Type and Mr K for the fun.

  35. Thanks to X-Type and to Mr K for the review and hints. A very enjoyable puzzle, was beaten by 18d, very good misdirection, I was looking for a homophone of “I” around a periodical instead of looking at that part of the clue, very clever. Had heard of 22d, but not 20d. Got the latter from the fodder. Favourite was 14a, which made me laugh. Was 3* / 3* for me.

  36. **/**** for me, so thanks Mr X-Type. For some reason, clues with the word doctor as an anagram instruction tickle my fancy, so 26a gets my vote for favourite, Thanks to Mr K and everyone else as well.

  37. Lovely crossword! I enjoyed it and thought the anagrams very well crafted. I had a good chuckle at 14a, my fave clue, and again at 19a.
    I like finding unusual words in a crossword. 18d and 22d are both new to me, and I much appreciated Mr K’s explanation of these. I knew 9a. I think these are female counterparts of the incubi…
    My thanks and appreciation to X-Type. My thanks and appreciation also to Mr K for an enlightening and delightfully illustrated review.

  38. Nice puzzle today, thanks X-Type, completed without needing the hints. OK, loads of anagrams, it probably also holds the record for the most covid related clues….., quite clever.

  39. What a brilliant crossword, a most enjoyable solve and some good chuckles along the way eg 14a, 16a and 8a and the quickie pun amused too. I have no objections to an anagram fest!
    Thanks to the setter and Mr K.

  40. Can’t really claim an unaided completion as the dreaded incorrect message showed up & I couldn’t be bothered to trawl through it for errors so pressed the reveal mistakes function – fault was a w instead of an f at 25a & quickly rectified despite not being familiar with the word. Add that one to 3 others new to me so definitely a school day with this puzzle. Can’t say it was one of my favourites but perfectly enjoyable nevertheless & the Quickie pun was a cracker. 14a my clear pick here.
    Thanks to X-Type & Mr K

  41. Most seem to have had the problem with 18d. I wish I’d spotted the lurker. I managed to get the rest without help. I had a d’oh moment with 19a. Favourites 8 16 19 and 21a and 1d. Thanks X-Type and Mr K.

  42. Only 18d was new to me but fairly clued so no gripes here. Didn’t have a problem with the archbishop as when we play darts requiring a score of four is known as Desmond’s. A most enjoyable puzzle. Favourite was 16a. Thanks to X-Type and Mr. K.

  43. I loved this puzzle, although like some others 18d did for me – I hadn’t heard of the fragrant substance, either, but managed to guess it. I think 14a was my favourite. Many thanks to X-Type and Mr K.

  44. Late again – the perils of work I suppose. Apart from 18d I rather enjoyed this. Thanks to Mr K and X-type. I did like the PDM on the Welsh and Turkish clues. Hope I get a bit more crossword time tomorrow.

  45. Even later than SJB – 18d was so elusive that I thought a nights sleep might work wonders. It didn’t- a great lurker for a new word. 8a is my favourite though. Thank you MrK and X type

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