DT 30161 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30161 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30161 (Hints)

The Saturday Crossword Club (hosted by crypticsue)

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On a very dark, cold and windy Saturday morning, we have what I thought was a fairly typical Saturday Prize Puzzle.

There are quite a few anagrams to get you started, a very visible lurker and, for me anyway, a couple of times when the repetition radar began to bleep.

I have one of those Saturday mornings where the planning of what-to-do-when took longer than many a military operation. I will be out spending my pocket money at the Church Christmas Fair when these hints are published, but shouldn’t be out for too long and will be able to help on my return with those clues where you think I ought to have provided a hint but didn’t

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

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

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

Some hints follow.


8a    Youngster reported party facing variable resistance (8)
This was my last one in and is one of those clues which made me channel my inner Rabbit Dave, as you find the solution first and then go ‘oh that [abbreviated South African political] party’! A homophone (reported) of a male youngster, the afore-mentioned party and a mathematical variable.

9a    Thus on the way back, mother carries one heavy metal (6)
A reversal (on the way back) of a synonym for thus followed by an informal name for your mother into which is inserted the letter representing one

13a    Become angry, leave part of pool (2,3,3,4,3)
This expression meaning to lose one’s temper completely is made up of a synonym for leave and part of a swimming pool

15a    Dissolute character away with their share? (4-3)
A dissolute character and a synonym for away

18a    Shake badly-behaved child held by rival (7)
A badly-behaved child ‘held by’ or inserted into a verb meaning to rival

25a    I had existence and personality (8)
An abbreviated way of saying I had and a synonym for existence or being

28a    Personal aspirations that are mistakes (3,5)
Belonging to oneself (personal) and some aspirations


1d    Tex with duo performing in evening wear (6)
An anagram (performing) of TEX with DUO

3d    Highwayman upset and he took fright (6,2,3,4)
An anagram (upset) of AND HE TOOK FRIGHT

5d    Giving support to sentence existing now (3,3,4,5)
A way of giving support to something, a prison sentence and a synonym for existing

7d    Brief us, up before County Council in court (8)
A reversal (up) of US goes before the abbreviation for County Council, IN (from the clue) and the abbreviation for court

16d    Only just enough now to represent as comparable (8)
The abbreviation for the time in which we live now and a verb meaning to represent as comparable

22d    Off about one? That’s the idea (6)
What something is if it is off about the letter representing one

23d    Seat almost fixed (6)
Almost all of a synonym for fixed

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The Quick Crossword pun: WON + MILL + AEON = ONE MILLION

50 comments on “DT 30161 (Hints)
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  1. Fairly gentle Saturday puzzle that is nevertheless very enjoyable. My only struggle is parsing 2d. My answer seems correct but as it uses part of the clue I am unsure it is correct.
    Thx to all

        1. Ok I get it is a lurker but where is the indicator? The presence of 2/3 of the answer so obvious in the clue made me doubt it.

          1. The indicator is ‘entering’, going inside so ‘Me in person’ is found entering the words in the erst of the clue

  2. A light, fun puzzle to start the day. CS must have been looking over my shoulder when I was solving 8a!

    Given his penchant for Saturday pangrams, I will thank Cephas. Thanks too to CS.

  3. Very enjoyable today, I’m always partial to the puzzles with multi-word answers, so got the four long ones first which made the rest pretty easy.
    Got stuck with the last one in at 8a even with all the alternate letters in it, but twigged it in the end, maybe the odd letter pattern fooled me for a bit?
    9 and 15a were my top clues today, great fun Saturday puzzle.

    1. 8a was my last one in also. I hate having to leave a puzzle with only one left to fill in. But isn’t it weird how you can come back a bit later and get it immediately? Our brains are amazing things!

  4. After my recent Saturday ‘losses’, I was going to keep my five bob in my pocket but, on doing a somewhat belated letter roll call after completion, I will use it to say that this is a Cephas pangram.

    Candidates for favourite – 18a, 28a, 17d, and 22d – and the winner is 28a.

    Thanks to Cephas and CS.

  5. Very pleasant and reassuring Saturday fare, with 8a, my LOI and COTD, taking top prize, with 17d and 12a joining it on the podium. Thanks to CS and today’s setter. 1.5*/3.5*

    Okay, I have finally joined the ranks of those reading or having read Lessons in Chemistry (which our Barnes & Noble bookstores have chosen the Book of the Year!), and…well, meh. What’s wrong with me?

    1. I was in Waterstones bookshop here and was tempted to invest in the new John Irving, resisted at the last moment as his recent books seem overly long with little reward. Any thoughts from Charleston?

      1. Always read Irving until he became repetitive and self-proclaiming, about ten years or so ago, but the earlier stuff (Garp, Owen Meany, Cider House, etc.) holds up, I think. Can’t help you, John, with the later books.

        1. Agreed, I am a big fan of the early stuff too, but I agree with the Guardian review that he needs a drastic editing of his recent offerings. I think I avoided a mistake there.

    2. Looking for Christmas presents for my three daughters I read the various newspaper articles which praised it but was not convinced they would like it and I don’t think I would.

    3. Goodness, Robert, it’s rare for me to love a book that you didn’t enjoy. I’ve also lent it to a couple of friends and received favourable reports from them so I think you may be in the minority this time!

      1. Oh I’m still hopeful, Jane. Still have 150 pages to go and E. Zott has just begun her new job hosting ‘Supper at Six’.

  6. Was about to beg here for help with parsing the wordplay at 26a — and then it came to me. Very clever! Thank you Cephas and Sue.

      1. Merusa, I am guessing that allusions to the weird old game of cricket haven’t travelled to the other side of the Atlantic? 😆

  7. Done in quadrants clockwise from NW. (8a and the party came to mind early doors) I was already pangram searching when I found the missing letter I needed in the SW.
    Thanks to CS and the presumed Cephas.

  8. It was all going well until it wasn’t. Aren’t our brains/wavelengths so different. I had no trouble with 8a after I got the lurker hitherto mentioned. My stumbling block was the first word of 21a, 16 and 17d and 24a. After I got the first of those the others swiftly followed. I had thought of 16d early on but the parsing was the problem till the penny dropped. I guess 24a is one you either see straightaway or you don’t. I exhausted all ranks before going on to famous sailors. Favourites 13 and 28a and 4and 16d. Will also give a shout out for the so need and simple 27a. I think Cephas too. Hope so and thank you and thank you CS, although my sticking points did not coincide with yours.

  9. Needed the hints for three which gave me the checkers for the two others posing a problem. So not too bad for a Saturday prize puzzle.

    8a was a very good clue as is 28a.

    Many thanks to CS and Cephas for a satisfying nearly finished puzzle.

  10. First impression was that it looked likely to be tough going due to several multi-word solutions but in fact they all fell readily into place and made for a smooth ride first over the East then the West. Suppose 24a is an officer and plant for 14d seems rather an unspecific description. 26a is clever as is 8a which came easily to mind thanks to the checkers. Thank you Cephas and CS.

  11. Most enjoyable once I got into it, which took me ages. However, once I had a few checkers I was away and for once the fact it was a pangram helped. Plenty of clues to like but my absolute favourite and COTD is the short and sweet 26a, which I pondered for ages before the rather massive penny hit the floor.

    Many thanks to the setter (Cephas?) for the fun. Huge thanks to CS and I hope you get all your Christmas shopping done.

  12. 8a was the clue that held out on me until the last gasp – should have looked for the pangram earlier in the solve!
    Top three here were all in the ‘downs’ – 7,17&22.

    Thanks to presumably Cephas and to CS for the ‘hints & tips’. Hope you didn’t get too carried away with your spending at the Christmas Fair!

    1. Not an awful lot to buy – I did have a go at the raffle and a couple of tombolas – won a 350g bar of Galaxy chocolate on the Chocolate Tombola :)

  13. Probably my fastest solve ever, though I don’t compete with myself timewise. Greatly helped by the four long ones and the fact that I saw the pangram early on. I loved all of it, especially 8a, 18a, 21a, 27a and 5d. My favourite was 7d. Thanks to the compiler and Cripticsue.

  14. A jolly crossword for a grey Saturday (in Surrey). My heart generally sinks when I see a science-y clue (hello 9a!) but this one could be deduced without a BSc.
    On Thursday we took the youngster (she’s nearly thirty) to see the thoroughly splendid Ego Ella May in a small club in Soho. After recent experiences I swore our days of ‘popping’ into London for the evening were over, but we made an exception on Thursday. The performance itself was sensational and Ego Ella May and her small band, performing a set of jazz classics took one’s breath away.
    The downside: Two hours to drive fifteen miles into London with the roads around Piccadilly jammed by Morocco football fans celebrating their World Cup success (in good natured style), and nearly forty quid to park – and that was a ‘special offer’. So, swings and roundabouts. Bonus – lovely supper afterwards at a vegan restaurant in Soho.

    Thanks to the setter and PC Security (anag)

    1. Tetence, The Soho Piano Bar looks like a fun venue and your post made me wish (not for the first time!) that I still lived in London instead of in the sticks on the Surrey/Sussex border! Loved Ella May contribution too. Glad you enjoyed your visit in spite of the hassle/expense involved in getting there.

  15. I made slightly heavier weather than necessary in completing the bottom half, but once it was finished I honestly couldn’t understand why. It was indeed, as others have said, light and good fun, with 8a taking the honours this afternoon.

    My thanks to, presumably, Cephas, and most definitely to CS.

  16. Most enjoyable end to the crossword week.
    Must say the long 13 and 21a and 3d greatly assisted
    Many thanks, indeed, Cephas and CS.

  17. A very enjoyable crossword today which makes up (a bit) for The grey cold miserable weather here in Angus.
    Last one in for me was 17d….which I think is my favourite today .

    Thanks to the setter and to crypticsue.

  18. With this Saturday puzzle being a pangram, I’m putting my 5/- on this being the work of Cephas.
    1.5*/4.5* today.

    Solved this on my Friday night awaiting more snow this evening … 2-4cm possibly. but nowt so far.

    Favourites included 9a, 12a, 13a, 18a & 5d – with winner today 13a … and a chuckle too.

    Also had chuckles and grins from 14a, 21a & 28a.
    A fun, rewarding puzzle.

    Thanks to Cephas and CS for hints.

  19. Plain sailing until I got stuck on 8a. Thanks to Crypticsue for the hint and the setter for an otherwise gentle runout.

  20. 8a held me up the longest today. Just couldn’t see the very obvious first part. So I was grateful for the hint. Otherwise it was a joy. Lovely sunshine up here in Cheshire. Thankyou hinter and setter.

  21. Today’s puzzle seemed right on my level and I made good progress until I got held up in the NW. The party in 8a was far too obscure for me and I missed the very obvious lurker despite the neon signpost in the introduction. I also missed a couple in the SW so all in 4 hints needed – very satisfying.

    5d, 9a, 12a, 26a and 28a all made me smile and go down as my COTD

    Ty as ever to the setter and invaluable hints CrypticSue!

  22. Another lovely puzzle not written in Sanskrit! I like multi-word answers, so I was in hog heaven. I liked 3d, wasn’t there a book by that name, or am I making it up? My fave was 17d with 28a as runner up. Thanks to Cephas for the very enjoyable offering and to CrypticSue for her hints and tips.
    Thanks to all you chaps for the good wishes yesterday, only have a sore tailbone today. I’ll live to see another day!

  23. Suspect the bookies would have correctly chalked up no offers on who set this one. Add me to the 8a last in club turning what would have been a *time stroll into nearly double it so it’ll have to my pick. Ticks also for 28a+ 7&17d.
    Thanks to Cephas & CS

  24. Late on parade having been to watch son play rugby at school. 8a and 23d were my last ones in. 8a fell when no other party would fit and 23d when I googled to check whether this was a seat. Thanks to Cephas and CS.

  25. I often get a sense of dread when a blogger mentions anagrams to get you started — I tend to struggle with an anagram before there are any helping letters — but a couple of those were so obvious even I got them straight away.

    My favourite was 7d, which I enjoyed for its neatness. Thank you to Cephas and CrypticSue.

  26. I loved this puzzle but have 2 unsolved…21a and 16d…being thick as I have the other checkers unless I have something wrong. Can anyone give me more of a clue?? Thanks 😊

  27. Well I got there in the end and my last one in was 8a. A couple of adjustments in the South West but otherwise, quite straightforward and enjoyable. I didn’t get chance to look at this until late today because it was my husband Bill’s 80th birthday yesterday and it was a very hectic 24 hours. Followed up today with getting Christmas cards and letters written. As I type there is a cacophony of noise coming from the nearby main road. The annual charity tractor parade is coming through the village along the A666! Many thanks to Cephas and CS.

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