DT 30473 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30473 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30473 (Hints)

The Saturday Crossword Club (hosted by crypticsue)

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

A very cold morning with a sprinkling of overnight snow makes this probably another day to stay indoors and solve crosswords or perhaps get on with writing Christmas cards. Once I’ve scheduled these hints, I’ve got to go out to our church’s Christmas Fair  but will be back before lunch to see if anyone wants any more help or, quite probably,  has ignored Big Dave’s Red instructions!

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. If I haven’t hinted the clue(s) you need help with, it is more than likely an anagram or a hidden word

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    Irony perfect somehow in Pericles (6,2,4)
A character in a Shakespearean play is an anagram (somehow of IRONY PERFECT

11a    Song of no great length about husband’s cat (9)
A way of describing a song that isn’t very long goes ‘about’ the abbreviation for Husband

18a    Sound of my army band? (5)
This army band sounds like an interjection of surprise (my)

19a    Coat‘s second layer worn by ‘umble character (9)
The abbreviation for second and a layer into which is inserted (worn by) the character in David Copperfield by Charles Dickens who always insisted he was very ‘humble

20a    Your compiler’s Conservative, not Liberal, making charge (5)
The way our compiler might say he was a Conservative without the abbreviation for Liberal

22a    Stops one throw being returned in cricket series (9)
A reversal of the Roman numeral for one and a high throw inserted into a cricket series

27a    … this was used to prevent it! (8,4)
A device said to be worn by wives of absent crusaders to prevent them indulging in ‘it’ while their husbands were away


1d    Old lizard Mauro’s content after pint with love (9)
A very old lizard – the content of mAURo goes after an abbreviated pint and the God of Love

2d    Still at the crease: no boundaries in Perth (5)
A synonym for batting (at the crease in cricket) with the inside (no boundaries) letters of the final word in the clue

4d    Mum, not married, sensible apart from that (9)
A mum without (not) the abbreviation for Married and a synonym for sensible

6d    River‘s river with carp, not wide (5)
The abbreviation for River and a verb meaning to carp or complain peevishly without the abbreviation for Wide

10d    Marine mammal and mammoth, perhaps close up (8,4)
A mammoth is an extinct example (perhaps) of the largest living land mammal which should be followed by a verb meaning to close up

21d    Sir Toby‘s noisy expulsion after dinner? (5)
Another Shakespearean character – this one from Twelfth Night has a surname which can also mean a noisy expulsion of wind after eating dinner (or any other meal)

24d    Cool to check out music genre (5)
The ‘usual’ cool or fashionable and a verb meaning to check out permanently

Could new readers please read the Welcome post and the FAQ before posting comments or asking questions about the site.

As this is a Prize crossword, please don’t put any ANSWERS, whether WHOLE, PARTIAL or INCORRECT, or any ALTERNATIVE CLUES in your comment. If in doubt, leave it out!

Please read these instructions carefully – they are not subject to debate or discussion. Offending comments may be redacted or, in extreme cases, deleted. In all cases the administrator’s decision is final.

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The Quick Crossword pun: HARM+ MONICKER = HARMONICA

95 comments on “DT 30473 (Hints)
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  1. Lots of diverse GK needed for this tricky puzzle on a chilly morning.

    LOI was 18a. Although I hate to say it, my COTD was 5d as the penny dropped with few checkers. Not usually a Spooner fan.

    Thanks to setter and CrypticSue.

        1. Well, I did wonder! Many thanks / I didn’t trust myself. And I am desperate to win another pen just to prove it is not a myth!

  2. The completion of this excellent and quite tricky puzzle was not helped by putting an alternative name at 3d and getting the wrong city in 1a. The latter would certainly have been avoided if I’d checked the anagram fodder. My errors aside, I thoroughly enjoyed this, as luckily I knew most of the GK and the wordplay got the rest.

    My thanks to our Saturday setter and CS.

  3. It took a while for me to get going with today’s offering but it was a great challenge. I had to drag the Shakespearean references from the depths of my mind. As usual, the reverend sent a shiver up my spine but it suddenly came to me, which was a relief. Normally, I don’t get on with clue combinations but that at 26a and 27a was rather comical. No real favourites today.

    Thank you to the setter for the fun and many thanks, CS for the hints.

  4. 2*/2*. It’s disappointing to see that the letters to be removed from the anagram fodder in 15d do not appear in the same order. We are told that it is a Telegraph requirement to have a second anagram indicator in such cases. Why do some setters ignore this, and why doesn’t the editor pick up on it?

    It’s also disappointing to find an unindicated Americanism in 24d.

    Sorry to be grumpy this morning. Thanks anyway to the setter and to CS.

    1. Don’t think 24d is American, RD. It’s an English term used widely in UK.

      I agree about the missing anagram indicator, perhaps adding ‘broken pot’ may have worked without spoiling the surface.

      1. Philbert, as far as I can see that meaning for “check out” does not appear at all in the BRB. Collins describes it as specifically US slang.

        That’s a very good suggestion about broken pot.

        1. Sorry RD, I misunderstood. Thought you were talking about the full answer rather than the ‘check out’ part of the clue.

        2. I don’t take a lot of notice of surface readings while solving crosswords, but I did think when drafting the full review that the surface reading of 17d worked very well and wondered whether that was why the setter hadn’t added a second anagram indicator

        3. Apologies, RD. I too thought you were referring to the answer.

          Saying that, my comment still applies because I have used that term for many years. I picked it up in the early-90s when I was working in the moneymarkets, givin’ it large, son.

    2. Hi RD

      I’m okay with 24d. The term is for sure an Americanism but, to me, it’s been around long enough for it to not require an Americanism like ‘rap’. I remember ‘rock and roll’ being an answer sometime this year and no one said that it should have an Americanism indicator.

      It’s down to the old argument of where one draws the line for an Americanism indicator to be required. I reckon me and thee are about 20 to 30 years apart. There’s no right or wrong answer of course as it’s subjective.

      I don’t mind not having a second anagram indicator because it’s not difficult to cross out three letters as long as the tiny word is gettable. I am surprised that is the crossword etiquette.

      A pleasant Saturday workout with lots of great surfaces. I enjoyed the GK and the spoonerism. I do giggle when I see the word spooner as I picture many solvers twitching or the look of dread on their faces.

      1d was out of my reach as I’ve never seen the abbreviation for pint in a crossword. Duly noted.

      My podium is 2d, 4d & 22a.

      Many thanks to the setter and CS.


  5. This one seemed to flow like treacle that’s been left outside overnight in the frost.
    I (and it might be just me) found this puzzle irritating more than enjoyable, with 1d being a good example, does the middle part of the answer just mean ‘love’ or should there be something else in the clue?
    On the upside though there were some crackers, 27a, very clever, and 5d also very good. Many thanks to our compiler today, maybe just not one for me.

    1. I agree with your comment about 1d, TC, especially when the setter has said ‘love Goddess’ in 9a.

        1. Forgive me, CS. Are you talking to me or TC?

          If it’s me then I’m not with you (I’ve read your post farther down).

          If it’s him then ignore me.

    2. Re: “should there be something else in the clue?” Probably — but not because it is not correct. The term (usually lower case) means ‘romantic love’ (as contrasted with agape or ‘spiritual love’). However, as this meaning is inexplicably absent from the BRB (at least from my 11th edition), one might argue that even though it is a valid term, it is not eligible for use in a DT puzzle.

      1. Thank you Falcon, you font of all knowledge…..or do I prefer fount?


        The jury’s still out on that one though I’m leaning towards the former.

      2. I’ve just looked for this word for love, as a common noun, in a couple of online dictionaries with one of them being ‘Free dictionary’ which I use all the time and it’s there!

        Admittedly, they’re probably not the most reliable so hoo nose.

        1. We are treading on a fine line on a SPP but I think you will find it (and his six brethren) in a Greek dictionary

  6. DG

    I’ve just read your post from last night. Not wishing to make today difficult for you as well I wanted to say how sorry I was to read it. I am not sure how you are related to DD1 but I am sure it must be very hard for you.

    very best wishes to you, your husband and DD1


    1. I missed your post last night Daisy, but have just read it. It’s awful for you and your family, when a daughter doesn’t know you. I have feiends whose husbands and wives dont recognise them because of dementia. Just know we’re thinking of you and sending positive vibes.

      1. Oh bless you CC. I was very low yesterday. Bounced back today because worse things happen all the time and we had lots of wonderful years with her before things went pear shaped, and have to concentrate on the happy memories. Harder on her young sons though.

      1. Amazing how nicknames stick. My son Christopher had a little friend, who couldn’t pronounce Christopher, so he called him Topher. He has called him that for years

        1. I had it down as Darling Daughter as well, but Dirty Daughter made me smile and I bet it brings back fond memories for Daisy.

  7. A game of two halves for me on this icy morning. The NE went in relatively smoothly but the SW was much trickier. I particularly enjoyed the well-disguised anagrams and the General Knowledge content of the guzzle , which is often absent from puzzles nowadays. The 1a, 15d and 13a anagrams were especially good as was the 4d lego clue. However, my COTD was, like others the Spoonerism at 5d. Many thanks to the compiler for aproperly varied SPP, with a range of clue types, GK to spice things up and a dose of humour. Thanksalso to CS for the hints. I’ve just seen a brass monkey looking for a welder in my frozen garden, so im staying indoors wrapping parcels, writing Christmas cards and letters andfeeding my Christmas cake with brandy.

      1. By the time I’ve mixed it into the cake the Christmas puddings, the brabdy butter etc,, quite a few little tasters come my way, Daisy. Lucky if there is enough left to light the pudding.

  8. Tough to start but one to make steady progress through. My favs were 1a and 1d although the Spoonerism was excellent.
    One across was one of the Bards tougher watches even for a big Sh fan like me.
    Thx to all

    1. Hi Brother Ian. I like your abbreviation for Shakespeare as ‘Sh!’ is what people are forever saying to chatty attendees.

  9. I think we have a love God rather than just the letter in 1d, but a very pleasant start to a beautiful crisp day
    I am delaying putting the lights on our outside tree as my fingers are blue from hanging out the laundry
    Thanks to setter and CS

  10. A fun puzzle today with a smattering of literary references. My fave today was the constipated conductor at 15d.

    CS – for your 1d hint, is not the God of love rather than ‘nothing’?

    1. If it wouldn’t give away the time I took to solve the crossword, I’d show you the piece of paper where I actually noted that fact down but didn’t look at the paper while typing the hint

  11. Wow, not the usual Saturday walk in the park! I found this quite a struggle but with a little Google, a goo maybe, for 1d, I got it finished.
    I had a wrong one in for 1a for some time, a pub in Earls Court!
    Alls well that ends well!a

  12. A curate’s egg for me and I’m with RD on the need for an anagram indicator for the letter removal in 15d. 3.5*/2*

    Candidates for favourite – 27a, 4d, and 6d – and the winner is 27a.

    Thanks to whomsoever and CS.

  13. The run of very high quality prize puzzles continues, with the great anagram at 1A providing the ‘perfect’ start. And that was a really good spot given the answer. I think I probably like the pairing that concludes with 27A for the amusing pun, but another all-round classy weekend puzzle for me. Many thanks Mr or Ms Ron, and to CS for the hints.

    1. How right you are JV re Mr or MrsRon – I’m afraid I’m guilty of referring frequently to Mysteron. In fact, as far as I’m aware, there is only one setter from the fairer sex at the DT.

    1. I think you may have the wrong old lizard. I found one first which was one letter out. Concentrate on the abbreviation for pint. Clever when you add it all up!

  14. Re THAT anagram (the compound one), I didn’t know about the DT rule against such things. Certainly I recall a convo at The Crossword Centre where the decision fell in favour of no second indicator, as the answer plus the unneeded bit is always ONE possible anagram solution, and I was convinced by that argument. There are no real rules, though, are there.

    Sorry to butt in again, I should have remembered to add this.

    1. I believe most editors impose the rule, in a compound or subtractive anagram, that both the parts (the solution and the letters to be removed) need an anagram indicator (so two indicators) unless either part is in the same letter order. It is to be fair to the solver who has to ‘win’ in this little game we play with him or her, but I think common sense is permitted when the answer is evident and the second indicator would just add extra words (as length is often an issue with only a limited space available in the newspaper edition).

      1. I agree.

        I really am surprised that the powers-that-be have stipulated this.

        Rules schmules.


        A v enjoyable crossword, btw, Cha Cha Cha. 👏👏

  15. I really didn’t enjoy the style of this one but perhaps I was feeling grumpy anyway!
    Best of the bunch for me were 4,5&17d.

    Thanks to our setter for his efforts and to CS for the hints.

  16. Never in the field of crossword conflict has one man (this one) had to call on Siouxie Sioux as early as I did today. I found this a very tricky challenge indeed. 1d had my head spinning in the manner of Regan in The Exorcist.
    However, I cannot dilly nor even dally as we are heading out, in about ten seconds, for luncheon. I am hoping for blazing fires and double glazing.

    Love to Daisy

    Thanks to the setter and PC Security (anag)

  17. Quite a struggle for me today. Needed the hints for 18a and 20a then still had to use the word wizard for 20a.
    Not my puzzle today.

    Thanks to crypticsue and to the setter.

    Heavy snowfall here this morning. It has stopped now but by the looks of the sky there is more to come.
    We live halfway up a steepish hill which is also a bus route, so much devilish amusement can be had watching buses and cars try and often fail to negotiate the hill in the snow…..rotten of us really but you have to get your fun where you can at our stage of life.
    Certainly not going out today……

  18. Phew that was a struggle for me and I didn’t particularly enjoy it. Ended up seeking help in NW. Bunged in 25a although not convinced it is quite a synonym. Have no feline knowledge so 11a rang no bells and 1d didn’t either. Joint Favs 27a and 2d. Thanks Mysteron and CS.

  19. A bit of a tussle but all doable. I was much more familiar with 21 than 1a. 18a LOI. Only fully parsed when I looked the hint. I should not forget My. 27a 19z and 5d all floated my boat. Thanks setter and CS.

  20. Another fun and rewarding Saturday puzzle this week. Some really clever clueing and surface reading too. Two answers held me up for a while but the intersecting letters were all the same except for two that didn’t work. Anyway … got it sorted toward the end.

    2*/4* for today

    Favourites include 27a, 5d, 14d, 15d & 24d — with winner 27a
    All of these five clues made me smile and 24d a laugh out loud.

    Thanks to setter & CS for hints/blog

  21. My. That was a bit of a marathon for a SPP. I am still stuck on 18a but there was much to like. 1a, for example and I actually appreciated the crickety clue at 2d. As far as the Elgin Marbles are concerned (a total non sequitur but Radio 4 are talking about it at the moment) it is just possible that we have taken better care of them here than would have happened had they stayed in situ. Some 20/25 years ago we went to an ancient Greek site where a pop concert had taken place the day before and the devastation and damage was appalling. Anyway, sorry. I digress. This was a good distraction on freezing cold day on the edge of the Fens, George is off watching rugby at Hertford so I think I shall go to bed to keep warm. Many thanks to Messrs Setter and CeeSoo.

  22. I absolutely loved this including, for a change, the Spoonerism. My LOI in was 1a as I was barking up completely the wrong tree. SW corner held out the longest. Thanks to the setter and CS. Sorry your phone call was distressing DG. Air fryer a great success but wish I’d bought a larger model.

  23. I agree with those who found this a sterner test than the usual SPP but I enjoyed the battle of wits with the setter. Thanks to him or her and to CS for the hints. ( Sue, you might wish to take a close look at your hint for 1d.)

  24. Tricky, but my Shakespeare and Dickens knowledge helped getting checkers. I loved 5d, but my anathema to Spoonerisms forbids me to claim it as a fave. I thought there was some good stuff, but I did need my wordsearch for a few … eg, 1d, I’m no good at ancient lizards. I had no problem with working out 15d, with the checkers it couldn’t be much else, I also remembered the crickety series at 22a, maybe I’m getting better with age.
    Thank you Chalicea for the fun, and to our CrypticSue for the hints and tips.

      1. A 1d! unless it is an extremely well preserved fossil (like myself)
        Do you mean 10d? either way I’m intrigued

        1. It’s a HUGE iguana that looks prehistoric, I’m guessing about 4′ long, if not longer. Our local animal rescuer caught it in a cat trap!

            1. Thanks Steve!! “Beautiful animal”? The brutes have eaten all our moorhens and lots of other things as well. They are so invasive, discarded “pets” from idiots, and of course they love our climate. That’s Sadie’s dog walker!

  25. Took bit longer than some Saturday Prize Crosswords that we’ve seen. Some GK stretched the memory banks and putting the alternative solution to 3d held me up annoyingly. Favourite clue 27 a
    Thanks to Compiler and CS

  26. I thought this was great fun. Liked All over the place on the acrosses – 13, 18, 19, 25, 27. Didn’t know the origin of 1a, just that it would have to be Greek, and didn’t know there were movies called 11a. Also liked 4, 5 and 15d. No real winner, though.
    Many thanks to our compiler and to CS the blog.

  27. I thought the setter should be put on the naughty step for 27a. As for Spoonerisms the crossword editor mentions them in today’s puzzle newsletter. I am definitely in the abhorrence camp. Seems to be the last refuge of a setter who has puzzled themselves into a difficult situation and comes up with usually very weak attempt at humour.

    As for today’s puzzle it left me colder than the temperature outside. The best of the clues for me were 22a and 1d.

    Thanks and apologies to the setter and thanks to CS.

  28. Blimey – not quite what I was up for today!! Much too tricky for me and when I was hoping for a typical Saturday crossword.
    I did like the 5d Spoonerism particularly and several clues too.
    Thanks to today’s setter for the crossword and specially to CS for the hints.

  29. Couldn’t get going with this at breakfast, so saved it for lunchtime. A few more went in, but at least half from checkers. Still don’t understand what sound has to do with 18a. Have never liked Dickens, too depressing, and my Shakespeare knowledge is limited, so not my best day. If this was my first attempt at solving, I probably would not be back. Can’t please all the people…. Thanks to setter and of course CrypticSue.

    1. I wasn’t keen on 18a, because ‘my’ is rarely used in the sense required on its own (where I live anyway – perhaps others have a different experience), but the BRB includes it as is, so I guess I have to live with it. The answer sounds like a synonym unless your dialect pronounces all the letters.

  30. Very late to this today and found it pretty tricky. I did not know all the GK and I needed the hints for a couple. There were some great clues and I am glad I stuck at it.

    Many thanks to the setter and to CS for the hints

  31. Gave up very quickly on this one. Too much knowledge required on subjects I know little about and I hate using Google to tease out answers.

  32. A very enjoyable pre lights out solve. No problems with check out or the lack of a secondary anagram indicator as far as I’m concerned but I don’t know the rules. The old reptile needed post solve confirmation but thankfully ok with all the other GK. Ticks at 19,22&27a + 5,14&15d.
    Thanks to the setter & to CS

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