DT 30510 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30510

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30510

Hints and tips by Falcon

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Greetings from Ottawa, where we have just experienced our first major snow storm of the winter. While temperatures remain moderate (a bit below freezing), that is about to change as the polar vortex that has hovered over Senf for the past week moves eastward and, by next weekend, we will have our turn to ‘enjoy’ the frigid temperatures that have been affecting western Canada.

I found today’s puzzle from Campbell to be pretty much at the middle of his difficulty scale – thus well suited to the Monday slot.

In the hints below, underlining identifies precise definitions and cryptic definitions, FODDER is capitalized, and indicators are italicized. The answers will be revealed by clicking on the ANSWER buttons.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought of the puzzle.


1a   Head of cult, arrogant, snoops on them at first (4,6)
HIGH PRIEST — link together a synonym for arrogant (often accompanied by mighty), another word for snoops or sticks one’s nose into, and the initial letter (at first) of THEM

6a   Record time taken by primate (4)
TAPE — the physics symbol for time and a zoological primate

10a   Piece of bric-a-brac inquisitive American dropped off (5)
CURIO — another term for inquisitive with the two-letter abbreviation for American removed (dropped off)

11a   Conservative following the correct route for large hall (9)
CONCOURSE — the single letter for Conservative and a (2,6) phrase denoting ‘following the correct route’

12a   The French chap at wedding makes space (7)
LEGROOM — a French definite article and the principal chap at a wedding

13a   Recruits unusually silent before start of service (7)
ENLISTS — an anagram (unusually) of SILENT precedes the initial letter of SERVICE

14a   Crossing in secret on it at sea (12)
INTERSECTION — an anagram (at sea) of four words in the clue

18a   Where players play in front of play’s players, perhaps (9,3)
ORCHESTRA PIT — a cryptic definition of a sunken area where one group of players provides musical accompaniment to a second group of players located behind them

21a   Marked papers during meeting (7)
EVIDENT — the type of papers needed by young people in pubs inserted into a sporting meeting

23a   Mountain, most demanding without foremost of Sherpas (7)
EVEREST — a synonym of ‘most demanding’ with the initial letter of (foremost of) SHERPAS removed (without)

24a   Failed to maintain contact, missing last letter in post — that hurt (4,5)
LOST TOUCH — another word for missing, the final letter of (last letter in) POST and an exclamation of pain

25a   Letter from Greece, and some from e.g. Argentina (5)
OMEGA — a lurker hiding in (some) the last three words of the clue

26a   Wife and I and daughter initially earned extra (4)
WIDE — insert the I from the clue between the genealogical abbreviations for wife and daughter and append the initial letter (initially) of EARNED; the definition and answer are used in a cricket context

27a   Still furious? Obviously not! (7,3)
HOPPING MAD — a cryptic definition of a clearly not motionless state of anger


1d   Awful cheek pinching line, so barrack (6)
HECKLE — an anagram (awful) of CHEEK wrapped around (pinching) the abbreviation for line found in textual references

2d   Bishop leaving rubbish in lock-up? (6)
GARAGE — remove (leaving) the chess symbol for bishop from another word for rubbish; the solution is a structure for securely housing a vehicle

3d   Declarations made by you and me, say, about building material (14)
PRONOUNCEMENTS — what “you and me” are examples of (say) in a grammatical context containing a powdery building material

4d   Office-holder lying (9)
INCUMBENT — double definition

5d   After that time, close to Christmas, in church (5)
SINCE — the final letter of (close to) CHRISTMAS, IN from the clue, and a two-letter abbreviation for a Christian denomination

7d   Word puzzle bringing on a vexed moment, by the sound of it (8)
ACROSTIC — the answer sounds like a (1,5,4) phrase that could mean ‘a vexed moment’

8d   Service still good around end of session (8)
EVENSONG — a (4,2) phrase denoting still or nevertheless and the single letter for good surround the final letter of (end of) SESSION

9d   Sloth or pride? (10,4)
COLLECTIVE NOUN — the grammatical term for these words that describe a group of bears or a group of lions respectively

15d   Steps aboard vessel, craft on a long journey perhaps (9)
SPACESHIP — some steps made when walking inside a sea-going vessel

16d   Salad we locals prepared (8)
COLE SLAW — an anagram (prepared) of the two words in the middle of the clue

17d   European newspaper cuttings editor’s hidden (8)
ECLIPSED — the single letter for European, another term for newspaper cuttings, and the usual abbreviated newspaper boss

19d   Cash in on find (6)
REDEEM — on or concerning and find or consider

20d   Stall bearing right for London thoroughfare (6)
STRAND — a stall or kiosk containing the single letter for right

22d   Organised tour encompassing river in county town (5)
TRURO — an anagram (organised) of TOUR containing (encompassing) the mapmaker’s abbreviation for river

I will give special mention to 9d merely because I learned a new term – although, for the life of me, I can’t fathom how this term came to be applied to this animal that can move very quickly should it choose to do so.

Quickie Pun (Top Row): SUE + PURSE + TOR = SUPERSTORE

Quickie Pun (Middle Row): READ + REST = REDRESSED

Quickie Pun (Bottom Row) : WAR + KINGS + TIC = WALKING STICK

58 comments on “DT 30510
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  1. Blimey, is it Friday already? I found this tough for a Monday offering, perhaps due to my own shortcomings. I Got stuck for ages on 6a and 7d because I was convinced I had to force a ‘T’ into a word for primate, coming up with either atpe or apte, neither of which made any sense, but I’d been tricked by the word ‘taken’ in the clue. Got it in the end though and couldn’t believe how daft I’d been.
    My two favourites today were 18a and the brilliant 9d. Many thanks to our setter, great puzzle.

  2. I just scraped into * time but nearly ** as stumbled on my LOI 7d where I needed all the cross checkers before the word came. Quite gentle otherwise I thought and a pleasant *** with my two favourites being 18&27a. Thanks to Falconand the setter. Mondays are getting tougher.

  3. Great start to the week – for me one from the upper (if not quite his top) drawers of the Campbell filing cabinet. A sloth of the furry critters was new to me too (as is a maul or a sleuth) but had heard of a sloth 🐻 before so ‘twas guessable. It was my top clue also with 3d &27a earning podium spots. Despite looking I completely missed the middle Quickie pun.
    Thanks to Campbell & to Falcon.

  4. It’s Monday :good: It’s Campbell :good: and I concur with Falcon that this gem was in the middle of Campbell’s difficulty range – **/****

    Standout favourite – 18a!

    Thanks to Campbell and Falcon.

    1. Hmm – my Revised 13th Edition of the BRB has 7d on page 14 and it is listed under puzzle in my 4th edition Crossword dictionary.

  5. Typical Monday and just as well for me. A fair few easy pickings and then a bit slower after that. 12a made me smile but otherwise a bit routine?
    Thanks to compiler.

  6. A delightfully uncomplicated but highly entertaining puzzle for a bitterly cold Shropshire morning. I have to agree with Senf that 18a is way ahead of the field for my favourite selection.

    My thanks to our triple punner for the fun, and to Falcon.

  7. Started doing this at early o’clock as sleep was taking second place to an annoying tickly cough. Managed to complete about half and with the help of the hints and a bit of a nudge from Google most of the remainder slotted in this morning. Overall I found it pretty tricky, but once the answers revealed themselves there were quite a few “Ohhh, I see” moments.

    The typo in 4d on the new site (Offic- holder lying) was a bit confusing at first, but a quick check on the old site cleared that up.

    Favourites were the French wedding chap and the players playing place.

  8. I struggled with some of this but that may be because I’m not on top form. The cold weather is playing havoc with my arthritic fingers. Never having heard of the collective noun for bears I couldn’t get away from thinking about deadly sins for 9d. I loved 18a which came easily but still made my pick of the day, supported by 27a and 8d. Thanks to Campbell and Falcon

  9. A pleasant enough start to the crosswording week. It took me ages to realise just what 9d had to do with sloth, despite the answer being painfully obvious. My favourites today include 1a, 12a and 8d, but 18a comes out tops for me, if only for the wording of the clue. Thank yous to Campbell and Falcon.

  10. An enjoyable Monday offering – thanks to Campbell and Falcon.
    I got the 9d answer from the checkers and ‘pride’ then had to check how sloth matched the answer.
    Top clues for me were 18a, 27a and 9d.

    1. I couldn’t find this definition of SLOTH in online dictionaries, but in internet search, found a number of SLEUTHs and only two SLOTHs.

  11. I made a slow start but enjoyably accomplished this without having to go up two flights of stairs (see Will Bolton DT article today)! Not sure where the “so” fits into 1d. 9d sloth a new one on me. My Fav 1a. Thank you Campbell and Falcon for another of your great joint acts.

    1. For the cryptic analysis of 1d, read “so” as ‘resulting in’. Therefore, it serves merely as a link word between the wordplay and definition.

  12. A definite whoosh until
    Last in, 9d.
    Immediately got the second
    Part but experimented until
    Cracking the first.
    Enjoyable solve.
    Many thanks Campbell and

  13. Kicking myself on 9 down. I had the lions in mind, but didn’t know the bears! Thanks for the hint. Clever misdirection by the setter.

  14. Fun whilst it lasted. No need for the stair master today but I did learn something about bears.

    Thanks to today’s setter snd Falcon.

  15. Two new bits of vocab today – didn’t know the ursine group in 9d and thought the lying bit of 4d started with re; apparently the in version is ‘archaic’. Falcon’s pic for 6a reminds me of an awful time 60+ years ago in the theatre as a stage manager cum techie when our tape machine malfunctioned leaving that pictured mess just before (20 mins) an act requiring an hour of sound was due on. Just made it!
    Like others, loved ze wedding homme and 18a.
    V many thanks to Campbell and Falcon.

  16. All went well until I came across the sloth and the 19d find, the first of which required a bit of research. Made me smile when I discovered that a group of polar bears is a celebration – perhaps because they are normally such solitary animals?
    Several clues worthy of mention but my favourite was 27a.

    Thanks to Campbell and to Falcon for the review.

  17. An enjoyable puzzle and just right for a Monday.
    I particularly liked 12a, 18a and 7d.
    LOI was 11a.
    Thanks to Campbell and Falcon.

    1. A lovwly puzzle, pitched ar just the right level for a Monday backpager. Once again, I found the east mor challenging thant the west. The 7d homophone was good fun and the 18a cryptic definition but COTD was the sneaky grammatical term at 9d. Thanks to Falcon for the hints and to Campbell for aanother fine puzzle

  18. 2*/3.5*. As others have said – just right for a Monday.

    My favourite was 27a with a special mention too for 18a.

    Many thanks to Campbell and to the snowbound Falcon.

    1. Very nearly snowbound. It took me about 2.5 hours to clear my driveway. It’s amazing what the wind does. We received about 8 inches of snow. However, my car was sitting on bare ground with a drift 3 feet high between it and the street.

  19. Needed Falcon’s excellent hint for 17d but otherwise a solo solve after sorting out re- or in- for 4d.

    Favourite a toss up between 12a and 18a.

    Thanks to Campbell and to Falcon.

    Beautifully sunny here but very cold. No white stuff yet….maybe we’ll miss it. We often do. I used to live in Greater London (well, Essex really) and we saw much more snow there than we ever have up here on the Angus coast.

  20. Damnation. I typed out a lengthy erudite comment and then lost it. I was, like Ora, stuck only on 17d and needed to consult Falcon. Everything else fell into place very nicely with much to like – favourite has to be the French chap at the altar. Poor Brian, we have priests and bishops and services! Oh dear. Many thanks to Campbell for being gentle and to Falcon the frosty snowman.

  21. Nice start to the non-work week with this puzzle. A middle of the road Campbell puzzle today with a few head scratchers, but nothing to scare the horses today.


    Favourites today include 1a, 12a, 24a, 3d, 5d & 7d — with co-winners 24a/7d
    Lots made me smile and laugh like 12a, 27a, 2d, 20d & 22d

    Thanks to Campbell & Falcon for hints/blog

  22. Spent too long trying to shoehorn some form of sin into 9d, until the checkers set me straight. Still learned something new today regarding bears! Overall I found this to be a fairly tricky Monday but sorting out the correct type of craft in 15d broke the deadlock. Thanks to Campbell and Falcon.

  23. Splendid.

    This took me longer than normal which is a good thing. It’s nice to be tested early in the week…….once in a while.

    The bunch of bears was a new one on me and goes on the podium along with 18a and 27a.

    Many thanks to the dynamic duo.


  24. Blimey, is it Monday because this crossword is not yielding as expected ? Did it unaided but it set me back time wise and am still playing catch-up. 18 a was nice but not a lot of laughs along the way probably because I needed to get off to Zumba .Many thanks to Campbell and Falcon.

  25. Very tricky, not at all Mondayish. There were many I liked once I solved them, hard to pick a fave. I had three to choose from; 18a, 27a and 9d. I didn’t know about sloth but my online dictionary did.
    Thank you Campbell, and of course thanks to Falcon for helping me along.

  26. Not super easy , but with the right amount of challenge and enjoyable as well. I too thought 4D was a bit of cunning rather than a typo although it didn’t fox me for too long. I needed a hint for 11a , goodness knows why – got confused with conservative abbreviations I think. Favourite and last in was 9d. Thanks to Campbell and Falcon.

  27. Love Mondays – a great start to the week with a puzzle from Campbell. Mostly straightforward except I inadvertently filled 14a into 3d! As I am a paper and pen person that is bad news – unsurprisingly 3d was last in! Didn’t know the collective noun for bears and spent ages trying to think of a synonym for bric a brac. Even so completed in 2*time with 4* enjoyment. Thank you Campbell and Falcon.

  28. Tough for a Monday. The top half was ok but the bottom half not so much. Stretched synonyms and tricksy complicated clues and 7 just plain didn’t work.
    Seen better puzzles.
    Thx for the hints

    1. I have to disagree with you on your comment on 7d … I believe it was a rather good clue when all the lego parts are put together.

  29. I got there but I really do think Mondays are becoming harder. I look forward to Wednesdays more than Mondays these days. I liked the surface of 23a. I immediately started to enter “anagram” at 7d. Thank goodness it wasn’t the right length or I would have been held upper ages. My COTD is 3d with our building materials.

    Thank you, Campbell for the puzzle. I’m sure the reason I found it more difficult than usual is down to me and not you. Thank you Falcon for the hints. I hope the vortex doesn’t cause too much hassle.

  30. I enjoyed today’s puzzle though was held up by 7d and 9d. Missed the middle pun in the Quick crossword. Many thanks to Campbell for the friendly challenge and Falcon.
    We have to travel from the North West on Wednesday to Essex for a funeral; stopping overnight South of Nottingham and trying not to worry about the weather forecast and the state of the roads. Yet how can one compare that to what Falcon is currently dealing with?

  31. Rather enjoyed this. I found the top half harder than the bottom.

    LOI not surprisingly was 9d. Got it from the checkers and pride. Assumed that sloth was a group of sloths. Not so…

    Thanks to all.

  32. Got there finally, by no means easy for me and needed several visits. 9d was last in and only reached by the checkers and pride. 18a was my favourite. I am rather pleased that I stuck with it and got there in the end.

    Many thanks to Campbell and to Falcon for the hints.

  33. I found this difficult as I often do with Campbell but I stuck at it and got there complete with parsings.I agree that 18a was the cotd even though I got it straight away. Thanks to Campbell and Falcon.

  34. Good evening

    Like Steve (above in comment no.30), I found this a touch trickier than previous Monday BPers.

    Nevertheless I got there. Eventually!

    Three contenders for COTD: 27a, 9d, and the winner, 18a. The mother of all penny-drop moments!

    My thanks to Campbell and Falcon.

  35. Another very enjoyable puzzle, with too many to select as favourite. Completely missed the middle and bottom puns in the quick crossword.

    Thanks to both Campbell and Falcon for the puzzle and hints. I’m glad that we haven’t got Falcon’s weather yet, and wondering if any of it has reached my cousin in PEI, although being from Manitoba she’s very used to it!

  36. I thought this was more difficult than the usual Monday fare. I did complete it without hints. I was looking for a building material in 3d and took me a long time to realise I was looking for a grammatical term in 9d. Favourites 12a and 15 and 20d. Thanks to Campbell and Falcon.

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