DT 30027 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30027


Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30027
Hints and tips by Miffypops
+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

I hope you all enjoyed this puzzle

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought


1ac. Musical performer realistic about Shostakovich’s Fifth (10)

RECITALIST: An anagram (about) of REALISTIC is followed by the fifth letter of Shostakovich

6ac. Very impressive record — I start to cheer (4)

EPIC: Begin with the initials of an extended play seven inch vinyl record. Add the letter I from the clue. Add the first letter of the word cheer

10ac. We turned against wickedness, showing physical strength (5)

SINEW: Reverse the word we and append it to a synonym of wickedness

11ac. Admire a PC, exceptional person rendering emergency help (9)

PARAMEDIC:  Anagram (exceptional) of ADMIRE A PC

12ac. No-nonsense approach of a rural dean confronting bishop in room (8)

HARDBALL: An entrance room contains the first (approach) letters of rural dean followed by the chess notation for bishop

13ac. Never good backing a politician with specialist agenda? (5)

GREEN: The archaic poetic form of the word never (thankfully you wouldn’t see a modern poet using such an outdated device) is followed by the abbreviation for good. All reversed

15ac. Brusque editor’s given the necessary information (7)

BRIEFED:   A word meaning brusque, short or terse is followed by the usual overworked abbreviations for editor

17ac. Court finally finds nothing within the law (7)

SOLICIT: The last letter of the word finds is followed by the letter that looks like the number nothing. This is followed by a word meaning lawful or not forbidden

19ac. Fellow more confident after losing face as muck-spreader (7)

MANURER: Begin with a fellow. An adult male. Add a word meaning more completely confident that one is right minus its opening letter (face)

21ac. My home — this is being demolished in old city (7)

CORINTH:  Begin with a word meaning my or blimey. Add the usual word suggested by the word home. Now add the word this from the clue minus the word is which our setter has decided to demolish

22ac. President giving refusal in Paris, one cross inside (5)

NIXON:   An unpleasant American President can be found by placing the letter that looks like the number one and the letter that looks like a cross inside the French word suggesting a refusal

24ac. Light lager knocked back with ‘rocky’ movement? (8)

LANDSLIP: Light here means to fall or settle upon the ground. This is followed by the reverse a type of lager (Donkey urine)

27ac. Salt given report of taster, say (9)

TUNGSTATE: A homophone of the organ of the body used to taste is followed by a synonym of the word say or utter or proclaim or articulate. In chemistry, a tungstate is a compound that contains an oxoanion of tungsten or is a mixed oxide containing tungsten. The simplest tungstate ion is WO2−
4, “orthotungstate”. Many other tungstates belong to a large group of polyatomic ions that are termed polyoxometalates, (“POMs”), and specifically termed isopolyoxometalates as they contain, along with oxygen and maybe hydrogen, only one other element. Almost all useful tungsten ores are tungstates. So now you know

28ac. The first person to offer a unifying idea (5)

THEME: Begin with the word the from the clue. A generous gift from today’s setter. Add the personal pronoun that suits the words first person in the clue

29ac. Academic, good and sound

DONG: Begin with an academic, a lecturer at a university. Add the abbreviation for good. The same one used in 13 across

30ac. PM to get the boot! (10)

WELLINGTON;   An obvious type of boot is also the name of a former prime minister. Who knew? Certainly not me. The geezer has been dead since 1852


1d. See 26 Down (4)

2d. Against having label on one being kept in with disease (9)

CONTAGION: Begin with synonyms of the words against and label. Add the letter that looks like the number one and the word on from the clue.

3d. Dragged along to make vows in church? (5)

TOWED: A straightforward word meaning dragged along will provide your answer which when split 2,3 will suit the clue.

4d. European region left with a scheme outdated ultimately (7)

LAPLAND: Do as it says on the tin. A charade clue, all in the right order. Begin with the abbreviation for left. Add the letter A from the clue. Add a scheme. Add the final letter of the word outdated

5d. Holy person has posh car? Walks! (7)

STROLLS: The abbreviation for a sainted person is followed by a type of car associated with wealth and luxury

7d. Military chaplain has living accommodation with soldiers (5)

PADRE: A three letter term for living accommodation is followed by the Royal Engineers

8d. Fair game in which hitter looks for success (7,3)

COCONUT SHY: A fairground game involving throwing things at the large oval brown seed of a tropical palm, consisting of a hard woody husk surrounded by fibre, lined with edible white flesh and containing a clear liquid in order to win one if you knock it off it’s perch

9d. Second criminal about 50 is illicit dealer (8)

SMUGGLER: A three part charade. 1 The abbreviation for second 2 A particularly nasty type of street criminal 3 The Roman numeral denoting 50. Arrange as suggested by the clue

A Smuggler’s Song by Rudyard Kipling

If you wake at midnight, and hear a horse’s feet,
Don’t go drawing back the blind, or looking in the street,
Them that asks no questions they isn’t told a lie.
Watch the wall, my darling, while the Gentlemen go by!

Five-and-twenty ponies, trotting through the dark—
With brandy for the Parson and ‘baccy for the Clerk.
Laces for a lady and letters for a spy,
And watch the wall, my darling, while the Gentlemen go by!

Running round the woodlump if you chance to find
Little barrels, roped and tarred, all full of brandy-wine;
Don’t you shout to come and look, nor use ’em for your play;
Put the brushwood back again,—and they’ll be gone next day!

If you see the stable-door setting open wide;
If you see a tired horse lying down inside;
If your mother mends a coat cut about and tore;
If the lining’s wet and warm—don’t you ask no more!

If you meet King George’s men, dressed in blue and red,
You be careful what you say, and mindful what is said.
If they call you “pretty maid”, and chuck you ‘neath the chin,
Don’t you tell where no one is, nor yet where no one’s been!

Knocks and footsteps round the house—whistles after dark—
You’ve no call for running out until the house-dogs bark.
Trusty’s here, and Pincher’s here, and see how dumb they lie—
They don’t fret to follow when the Gentlemen go by!

If you do as you’ve been told, likely there’s a chance
You’ll be give a dainty doll, all the way from France,
With a cap of Valenciennes, and a velvet hood—
A present from the Gentlemen, along o’ being good!

Five-and-twenty ponies, trotting through the dark—
With brandy for the Parson and ‘baccy for the Clerk.
Laces for a lady and letters for a spy,
And watch the wall, my darling, while the Gentlemen go by!

14d. A demon a bit naughty is loathed (10)

ABOMINATED: Anagram (naughty) of A DEMON A BIT

16d. Resolution of company head (8)

FIRMNESS: Two synonyms are required here. One for a company and one for a geographical feature

18d. Lots of countries   showing self-restraint(9)

CONTINENT: A double definition. The first being such as Africa Europe Asia The Americas and Australasia

20d. Being let out again brings liberation (7)

RELEASE: Let out or hired out as a rental for a second time perhaps

21d. Hide in study — set apart, by the sound of it (7)

CONCEAL: Begin with an overworked word meaning study. Add a homophone based on the verb seal when used by a person or persons to seal off or isolate an area to prevent others entering

23d. Kiss given to no one turning up — I’m inert! (5)

: The letter that is used to symbolise a kiss is followed by the reverse of a word meaning no-one or no amount

25d. Salvationists beat the devil (5)

SATAN:  Begin with the abbreviation for the Sally Anne’s. A fine group of selfless people. Add a word meaning to beat someone repeatedly as a punishment

26d & 1d. Highly ranked US statesman once (4)

DEAN RUSK:  An anagram (highly) of RANKED US will lead you to a geezer that you have either never heard of or have long forgotten who held some sort of post in the middle of the last century. This type of clue has never floated my boat.

Quickie Pun Gray + Tape = Great Ape

Crossword solving the MP way 

Anagrams have three parts.

An anagram indicator. There are many of these to remember

The anagram fodder or the letters that make up the anagram

A definition. The definition will usually appear at the beginning or end of the clue

The fodder for an anagram will normally appear immediately before or immediately after the anagram indicator.

You may solve anagrams howsoever you want to.  I used to write them out in various ways. I now solve them mentally. Something I trained myself to do once I moved from the newspaper to the iPad

Once solved, anagrams provide an easy way in to a puzzle and provide useful checkers. Sometimes though, a few checkers are required in order to solve the anagram









75 comments on “DT 30027
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  1. 26d and 1d… Couldn’t see anything cryptic in the clue to work out who it was, and never heard of him.
    Otherwise a nice accessible puzzle!
    Thanks MP and setter

  2. My progress to completion was delayed by 1 and 26d being in the wrong order.
    Memo to self, Beware of this cunning ploy.
    17a sheer brilliance.
    So, 3*/*****
    Many thanks to the setter and to Miffypops.

    1. Oh dear.
      Wrongly parsed 1 and 26d.
      Thought it a non-cryptic answer.
      Didn’t spot the anagram indicator.

  3. The somewhat uncryptic combo of 26/1d aside (I had heard of the gentleman), this was a really enjoyable and pretty straightforward puzzle that was fun to complete. I ticked 1a, 20d and 21a as favourites.

    Thanks to our setter and to MP for his usual comprehensive review.

  4. I strongly suspect this is the work of our old Friday setter with several religious references.
    19&27a are words you don’t come across every day of the week as is the version of “never” in 13a. Nevertheless very enjoyable with my podium being 28a plus 9d with top spot going to the excellent 17a, with a nod to the clever use of highly as an anagrind in the 26/1d combo.
    Thanks to the setter and MP for his usual very readable blog.

  5. I am going to be AWOL until Monday – Henley. We have only missed 2 years since 1954, both times I was pregnant!. I reckon I should have a medal for perseverance. This is 1956.

    1. That is a very impressive service record at the river bank! Have only been the once (my own rowing was never at that standard), on a very hot day, and had a marvellous time.

      1. I rowed in the Ladies Plate in 1975 in a composite Oxford College 8 crew and we were knocked out on the second day by St Paul’s School Concorde whoever they were. Well, better than us anyway. It was a long two rows of about 7 mins but at least we were then allowed in the Stewards for the next two days and did enjoy rather too much Pimms. Happy days!🥤

  6. Hi, Miffypops. Thank you so much for enlightening me on the ones I’d got an answer for but didn’t know why: I’d failed to think of the ‘light’ settling on the ground or the particular salvationists, among others.

    For 12ac, Chambers has the abbreviation for Rural Dean, so you don’t need to have ‘approach’ doing double-duty as a first-letters indicator.

    Though why it has that abbreviation is another matter: do Rural Deans really crop up so much that they need abbreviating? And it’s hardly a long phrase that’s cumbersome to type out in full.

    (And in 21ac I think you meant to write “suggested by the word home”.)

    My favourite was 3d. And I always like clues such as 4d where I sceptically following the instructions, thinking it isn’t going anywhere, and the answer pops out. Thank you to the setter. If it was Giovanni, then I got considerably further than usual!

    I’m struggling with 16d’s definition: can anybody give an example sentence where it and the answer can be used interchangeably? Thanks.

  7. A bit of a ***/** stinker methinks: just about parsed 27a and as for the infamous 26&1d I had fortunately heard of him but that was just pot luck so whilst this was a good brain stretch I didn’t think it overly enjoyable. I did enjoy 21a though and that gets my COTD. Thanks for the challenge setter and to M as ever but in particular for his accurate description of said lager.

  8. From a Democratic American Secretary of State, to a pre-Victorian PM, to one of Ancient Greece’s great ‘polises’, this intriguing time-warp-er takes us back a bit, doesn’t it? And then, past the mustiness, there’s the really good stuff, like 27a, 17a, & 24a, with a large entourage of neat clues to boot. I first learned about 8d from these marvellous cryptics, never having had the pleasure of winning a kewpie doll or whatever the prize is. Thanks to MP (can’t remember ever seeing the Kipling poem before) and today’s setter. 2.5* / 3.5*

    A really top-notch Beam (aka Ray T) Toughie today.

    1. If you knocked the coconut off its stand then that is what you won. Usually a similar one in a pile by the stall holder

    2. Sorry to nitpick, but strictly it should be ‘poleis’. Just pointing out for reference in case the plural ever comes up in a puzzle!

  9. On the whole fun and enjoyable but I still can’t quite unpick 1/26d. Where is the anagram indicator? I knew the chap but no idea if he was highly rated, old US politicians are of little interest to most of us now that turnip head has gone (?).
    Lots of nice anagrams.
    Thx for the hints

    1. Doing the Quickie today is like the Church Times crossword, so many religious clues. I find this extremely offensive.

        1. Although everyone is entitled to his own faith or none, I fail to see why anyone, even Brian, can say that crossword clues relating to religion are offensive. If we all asked for the exclusion of subjects we dislike there would be nothing left.

  10. I found this to be a real head scratcher, which was beyond my pay grade on 27a and 26&1d.
    Many thanks to MP for the explanations, and to the setter for the challenge.

  11. Most of this an enjoyable and surprisingly straightforward Thursday puzzle. I’d never heard of the salt, which didn’t matter anyway, raised an eyebrow at 19a, and smiled at the 22a/23d combo – with that first letter, pretty much knew 23d before even reading the clue. However the long-ago and long-dead American politician while fairly clued needed e-assistance, and was completely unknown to me: he rests eternally in the same category as do obscure Japanese aprons. Ah well, it would be a dull world indeed if we never encountered anything new, and this puzzle felt as though it came from the pen of one of my favourite compilers.

    Hon Mentions for 17a, 22a and 9d; COTD 25a.

    2* (except the Yank) / 2.5* (enjoyment reduced by the Yank-induced frustration)

    Many thanks to the Setter (the Don?) and to Miffypops.

    1. this puzzle felt as though it came from the pen of one of my favourite compilers.

      … and he’s autographed it for you in the SW corner.

      1. Each to their own, MP, each to their own – doubtless you have traits (in fact I know you have traits) that I don’t get/share. Variety & spice of life, eh?

      2. Obviously raising eyebrows doesn’t float your boat😂, thanks for the hints. And as for 27a 🤷‍♂️

  12. I’m with Brian: still unconvinced by the 26/1d anagram indicator. And how does anyone remember the character in question? This is the only compartment of my life where I’m too young! Other than that, a pleasantly taxing solve. I had to give up on my posh 5d ‘ride’ reluctantly before 12a would work. COD 29a because onomatopoeia.
    Many thanks MP and our setter.
    Hoping the rain stays away from Taunton so we get a full day’s play.

  13. It took me a while to find the right wavelength for this compiler. I really enjoyed the variety of clues and the depth of the compiler’s General Knowledge. So, although it was a bit of a brain workout, the whole puzzle provided a satsfied feeling, once finished. There were a lot of good clues.1a, 27a,2d, 4d and the 1d/26dxcombo were amongst the best. Many thanks to the compiler and to MP for a few explanations so that I could see how a couple of bung-inscwere parsed.

  14. All well clued today, 27a was a new word for me and required Mr G for confirmation. Don’t know why, but the American character in 26/1d is a name lodged in my brain (didn’t spot the anagram) so no problem there.
    Thanks to the setter for the excellent clueing and MP for his usual in depth review.

  15. This was a little beyond my simpleton reach, so I needed several of The Miff’s excellent hints.

    Best wishes to Daisy and George for their long weekend at Henley.

    Thanks to Don G and The MIff.

  16. I always start from the bottom of the downs and usually get 3 or 4 in straight away so 26d threw me
    Other than that a straightforward solve. Used the reveal button for 26d in the end. Never heard of him, her, them ,they, it.
    Thanks to setter and MP

  17. I found this one a reasonably straightforward **/**, with 17 Across taking the honours. Many thanks setter and MP.

  18. I had a feeling this was the work of Giovanni even before he signed in at 29a. About the right level of difficulty for a Thursday, even allowing for the anagrammed statesman

    Thanks to Giovanni for the crossword and MP for the blog

    1. A homophone of the organ of the body used to taste is followed by a synonym of the word say or utter or proclaim or articulate

      No mention of a second homophone there

        1. Apologies Renaldo, a glitch in the copy and paste department. I’ve altered the clue in my review to what it should be. I will of course be giving myself a good talking to later.

  19. I fully agree with MP regarding 1d/26d … very obscure and the sort of clue that doesn’t work for me.
    The rest of the puzzle was fine. 3*/3* today
    Did not know the word in 27a
    Clues for podium include 6a, 12a, 22a, 3d & 5d with co-winners the two down clues.

    Thanks to Giovanni(?) and MP

  20. Not sure about this crossword🤔 quirky or what! ***/*** Favourites 24 & 28 across and 3 & 16d 😃 27a was a new word for me (but solvable from the checkers) but failed to spot the anagram in 26a & 1d 😬 Thanks to Miffypops and to Giovanni. Well spotted Gazza

  21. A DNF for me today. This is not because I gave up. Other things like various deliveries of furniture and gardening tools together with having to work to a very tight deadline (like 5pm today) for the marking of essays left no time for the puzzle.

    I will be looking at it later but a brief glance gave a few answers to be going on with.

    Thank you to the setter. Thank you, MP for the great hints and for reminding me of The Perishers – I have all the books. When I was at uni my friends and I loved discussing the Perishers over a pint. Well it was better than studying. :good:

    1. You appear to be the only person to have noticed the vague connection that the illustration at 30 across has with the clue. Well spotted

  22. Well, there’s a thing!!
    Assuming that this was set by Giovanni then there’s my excuse – I always found his crosswords way beyond me.
    Thanks to the setter and huge thanks and heroics to MP.

    1. It’s the other way round for me Kath. I always used to find his wavelength but recently that has not been the case.

  23. If it is a Giovanni that explains why I found this quite a slog. I never can get on his wavelength. However I had no problem with the two elderly gentlemen, both quite famous in their time. And the third one in 22a, although more infamous than famous. I struggled more with the musical performer, despite it being an anagram. Kept trying to making clarinetist out of it. And for me brusque and brief can be quite different but I am sure that is what it says in the BRB. Thanks to Giovanni and to Miffypops.

  24. Thanks to Giovanni and to Miffypops for the review and hints. I enjoyed this one very much, except for 26&1d, never heard of him, highly as the anagram indicator? Also beaten by 27a. Favourite was 24a. Was 3* /3* for me.

  25. Wimbledon or no Wimbledon I don’t think I would have been able to come to terms with this thorny poser without considerable backing. Nevertheless I liked several including 1a, 21a, 8d and 16d. I couldn’t believe 19a is a job title! Thank you Giovanni and MP.

  26. Nicely challenging solve up to 26d/1d.

    I studied 20th century history at school which included the US in Vietnam etc. Still never heard of the man.

    I don’t recall seeing highly as an anagram indicator before – one to remember.

    Thanks to all.

  27. Thanks for your continuing how to do crosswords piece after the blog MP. I think I need a brain swap though as after reading all the posts I am still in possession of the dunce’s cap.

    Thanks to the setter and to MP for the day’s non enjoyment.

  28. A pleasant enough crossword rather spoiled by 27a and 26/1d neither of which I’d ever heard of and probably never will again, two of the most obscure answers I’ve come across. No real favourite. Thanks to the setter and MP.

  29. Completely missed the anagrind at 26/1d & hadn’t heard of the chap either. 27a also new to me but twigged the homophone. Not my favourite puzzle of the week but still enjoyable.
    Thanks to DG ( neat signature which also passed me by) & MP

  30. It appears that I am not the only one to have had problems with 26d. I have spent ages trying to figure out how to give you all a picture of MP on his soap box. I’m sure that he can and should!

  31. I am surprised that no one (unless I missed it has questioned the homophone for the first part of 27a. Having worked it out from the fodder I googled tongstate. We don’t have tungs in Nottingham. Took me ages to get the musical performer even when I just had to arrange four letters. I ought to refrain from commenting on 26d for fear of sounding like Brian but I can’t resist. It was truly dreadful. Having uncovered the hint I had heard of him but would never worked it out in a million years. Pity. Otherwise a good job so thanks to Dong and MP. Favourites – 13a and 2d.

    1. I just allow for homophones to work somewhere for some. I often think they are funny when there is a bit of setters licence at play. As for Flaw and Floor, they are absolutely identical words for me but they always raise a comment from Devonshire and Scotland. C’est la vie.

  32. Couldn’t understand the phrase “in which hitter looks for success” in 8d. What’s all that about? And also failed on 26/1, partly through not recognising ‘highly’ as an anagram indicator – a bit dodgy if you ask me! Otherwise some enjoyable clues.

    1. Same here. The answer was obvious when you had the crossing letters, but I’ve racked my brains and can’t see the relevance of the clue (apart from the first two words, which were neat) unless it’s a limpingly obvious lit.

  33. 26d/1d: I got this straight away from the crossing letters. He was US Sec of State for 8 years, so he is hardly obscure. What I didn’t get was the anagram – I took the clue too literally. I came here to see how the clue worked. Similarly with 27a, I got the word but had never heard of it, so came here for confirmation. What a brilliant blog this is. I’ve been away from regular crosswording for many years and I’m just getting back into it. I look forward to visiting again soon.

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