DT 30163 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30163

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30163
Hints and tips by Twmbarlwm

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***    –  Enjoyment ***

Good morning.  Thank you to Gazza for filling in for me last Tuesday.
I found this Tuesday’s puzzle quite a knotty test in parts with more than the usual pauses for thought, but a satisfying feeling of having successfully risen to the challenge at the end. What with one thing and another I am a little out of practice though, so it’ll be interesting to see how everyone else got on.

Many thanks to the setter.

In the following hints, definitions are underlined, indicators are mostly in parentheses, and answers are revealed by clicking where shown as usual.
Please leave a comment below on how you got on with the puzzle and which aspects you liked etc.

1a Copper heard round a northern district daily initially? That’s beyond doubt (3,3,5)
CUT AND DRIED: An element’s chemical symbol is followed by a containment (round) of ‘a’ from the clue, a letter for northern, and two first letters, all inside a word meaning heard, as in a court case

10a Performer on stage gets to behave badly (3,2)
ACT UP: A term for a performer who does a turn, plus a two-letter word for on stage, or elevated

11a Variable figure arrived transfixed by hot Spanish city (9)
CHAMELEON: Forget x y or z for variable (as I did… eventually!), this is a deceptive definition for a creature from a word meaning arrived, containing (transfixed by) a symbol for hot, then followed by a four-letter city in NW Spain

12a Royal Mint has new coinage? It’s standard state of affairs (9)
NORMALITY: A memorable anagram (has new coinage) of ROYAL MINT

13a Country with wizard on back of merchandise has invigorating air (5)
OZONE: A fictional land from a 1900 book and a 1939 film precedes ‘on’ from the clue and a final letter as indicated

14a Individual missing round very commercial area in US state (6)
NEVADA: A synonym for an individual missing a ’round’ letter is followed by an abbreviation of very, a two-letter commercial, and the letter that represents area

16a Broadcast of choir? It’s extremely notable (8)
HISTORIC: An anagram (broadcast) of CHOIR IT’S

18a Firm with British colleague mostly showing rough tactics (8)
HARDBALL: A charade of a word for firm or unyielding, a letter for British, and a synonym of colleague with its last letter missing (mostly)

20a Look from a figure that’s elevated in hearing (6)
APPEAR: A homophone (in hearing) of an elevated figure, in the sense of someone who’s in the House of Lords, preceded by ‘a’ from the clue

23a Dotty character entering part of church is overtrusting (5)
NAIVE: A whimsical way of describing a dotted letter inside (entering) the main part of a church where the pews are

24a A label fixed to weapon immediately (2,1,6)
AT A GLANCE: ‘A’ from the clue and a three-letter word for label alongside (fixed to) a type of spear

26a Conservative voting i.e. altered related to reasoning (9)
COGNITIVE: An anagram (altered) of VOTING IE follows the letter for Conservative

27a Implied agreement a citation enshrines (5)
TACIT: The solution is hidden (enshrines) in the clue

28a Fantastic teacher shone no end, a dependable sort? (5,6)
SHEET ANCHOR: An anagram (fantastic) of TEACHER SHON


2d Pure, say (5)
UTTER: Clues are seldom shorter than this double definition, one an adjective, the other a verb

3d Praise a very softly spoken liberal, a guide at intervals (7)
APPLAUD: A Lego clue comprising ‘a’ from the clue, plus the two letters for pianissimo (very softly spoken), a letter representing Liberal, yet another ‘a’ from the clue, and finally alternate (at intervals) letters from guide

4d Fraud linked around City on reflection (6)
DECEIT: Two letters for the City of London postcode are contained (around) by a synonym of linked that’s reversed (on reflection)

5d Easy-to-prepare bread Michael’s mentioned (5-3)
READY-MIX: Another word for bread, as in cash, plus a homophone (mentioned) of a diminutive of Michael + ‘s

6d Social occasion around Oxford University gets to become regular (4,3)
EVEN OUT: A word for a social occasion or happening containing (around) an initialism of Oxford University

7d I think penance should be designed for very tiresome type (4,2,3,4)
PAIN IN THE NECK: An anagram (should be designed) of I THINK PENANCE

8d Note contact for a journalist getting supply of money (8)
RESOURCE: A musical note from the solfège system is followed by a word for an often anonymous journalist’s contact

9d Two foreign articles present second suggestions (13)
UNDERCURRENTS: French and German articles precede a word for present, or ongoing, and a letter that stands for second

15d A guy’s first in Alpine resort overlooking river to get padding (8)
VERBIAGE: A containment of ‘a’ from the clue, plus a first letter as indicated, both ‘in’ a Swiss village resort without its last letter r (overlooking river)

17d American in rush with equipment on rear of vehicle to try out something? (3,1,4)
FLY A KITE: The letter that can represent American inside a synonym of rush, or move fast, a three-letter word for equipment, and a final letter as indicated

19d Part of problem is highlighted flaw (7)
BLEMISH: Our second hidden (part of) solution

21d Shrewd officers nearly seizing computers etc (7)
POLITIC: A body of officers without its last letter (nearly) containing (seizing) a two-letter term for computers etc

22d Penny in the morning raising drink for another female (6)
PAMELA: Abbreviations for Penny and in the morning are followed by a reversal (raising) of an alcoholic drink

25d A companion among number to get Mexican snack (5)
NACHO: The puzzle’s seventh example of ‘a’ from the clue plus an initialised Companion [of Honour] inside (among) a two-letter shortening of number

My particular favourites were 12a, 23a, 2d, 5d and 7d. What were yours?

Today’s Quick Crossword pun: LOW + GUN + BURY = LOGANBERRY

58 comments on “DT 30163
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  1. I found this a struggle for a Tuesday and needed electronic help for a couple so not that enjoyable for me. I did like 1a, which went in straight away making me think the puzzle would flow. It didn’t! However, I thought 12a was a great clue and is my COTD.

    Many thanks to the setter for causing stretching the grey matter a little too far today. Huge thanks to Twmbarlwm for the much needed hints.

    1. Funny how it’s always the same chosen few every day there’s a Toughie masquerading as a back pager who get no fun solving.

  2. Well I quite enjoyed working my way through this rather enigmatic crossword; a heady mixture of ‘bung ’em ins’ and others that needed quite some concentration and deduction.
    It’s bin day here (the excitement!) including the last garden waste collection until February, so I have crammed the brown bin with as much ivy, leaves, and debris that I could wedge in there. Yet I still have enough to fill another dozen brown bins. Nature is relentless.

    Thanks to the setter and The Twmp.

    1. No more brown bin collections till February – outrageous! I haven’t even started clearing my gardens out yet. I wait till everything is dead/completely brown and then most of it gets cut right down to the soil and binned. I’ll be doing it over the next 2 weeks and there’ll be 2 to 3 bins-full, tightly crammed in. Luckily, my pal down the road will lend me his brown bin to use also – he has no garden beds at all (all lawn/tarmac). I have a large rose bush which is still in bloom, with new yellow flowers just coming out today, so I possibly won’t be pruning that till after Christmas.

    2. I’ve been clearing the garden beds and have just realised something – our bins for garden waste are green (lidded) not brown! Our (all) brown bins are for recyclables.

  3. Agree with Steve C that this Tuesday puzze was a tad harder than usual.
    Nicely clued wuth nothing obscure,liked the11a charade and 13a.Took a while to parse the journalist in my last to fall 8d .
    Special mention for 17d. Favourite was 12a for the surface.
    Going for a ***/****

  4. For some reason 8d&13a delayed what would have been a brisk completion taking me just beyond 2.5* time. A very enjoyable puzzle with some fine clues. Thought the anagrams & surface reads at 7d&12a both very good, as was the lurker at 19d, but the top 3 for me in no particular order were 4,5&21d. Ticks also for 18&26a
    Thanks to the setter & Mr T

  5. This was fairly enjoyable but what a mixed bag it was in terms of difficulty – some clues were straightforward and some very challenging. The Alpine resort was totally obscure for me.

    12a was my favourite.

    Many thanks to the setter and Mr T.

    1. Favourite ski resort of the royals I think & location of Andy & Fergie’s modest little chalet that they still owe a few shekels on.

  6. I found this a mixed bag today, completing at least half of the clues relatively quickly and then really struggling over some of the remaining. Needed 4 hints to complete unfortunately. 11a was my favourite for the clever misdirection and 28a was a new phrase for me.
    Contained a few too many answers which I got but still couldn’t parse without Twmbarlwm’s wonderful hints for my liking.
    Ty setter!

  7. Not quite Typically Tuesdayish, is this Mr Plumb’s grid? 2.5*/3.5*

    As I don’t circulate in such rarified atmospheres, I needed some e-help to identify the ski resort.

    Candidates for favourite – 5d, 9d, and 22d – and the winner is 5d.

    Thanks to the setter and Twmbarlwm.

  8. 7d was a well-crafted anagram, but my favourite was 23a: 8d was my final entry. Overall I agree that this was a tad harder than we have come to expect on a Tuesday, but the whole grid was fairly clued so no real problems. Most enjoyable.

    My thanks to our setter and Mr T.

  9. I enjoyed this – thanks to our setter and Twmbarlwm.
    There were some neat touches here – I particularly liked ‘has new coinage’ (12a), ‘dotty character’ (23a) and “Michael’s mentioned” (5d).

  10. As others have posted this was quite variable in difficulty. A good ***/*** challenge though.
    I enjoyed 1a, 11a (my COTD) and 9d. I needed Twmbarlwm to fully understand the answer to 20a so thanks to him for the hints and to the setter of course.

  11. Rather a joyless slog but made it through in the end. NE was last of the Mohicans. 12a is new (to me) indicator for which to look out in future. Fav was 5d. Thank you Messrs Ron and
    Welsh T.

  12. Not sure how much enjoyment I got from this one but there were certainly some clever touches – I was bamboozled for quite a while by the anagram indicator in 12a! Needed to verify the ‘dependable sort’ in 28a, a new one for me.
    Top three here were 13a plus 7&15d.

    Thanks to our setter and to Twmbarlwm for the review – that was quite a ‘welcome back’ you got dealt today!

  13. Good testing Tuesday fare, largely straightforward from the off, but then held up with the ski resort (had quite forgotten it, could only think of Val d’Isere, which was of no help!) and Spanish city. The homophone at 20a doesn’t really work for me – I pronounce the word with more an ‘a’ than a ‘u’ sound – and so I took a while to be convinced by it. A rarity in that no clues particularly stood out for me today.

    2.5* / 2.5*

    Many thanks to the setter and to Twmbarlwm

    1. Welcome to the blog, Rob.

      Thanks – Twmbarlwm is probably at work so I’ve taken the liberty of editing the hint for him.

    2. Lunch break! Sorry for the daft typo. It was obvious what the anagram fodder was but I must have got the ‘of’ on the brain and duplicated it when distracted. I didn’t have time this morning for a thorough re-read.

  14. Started super fast but then a few took a bit more teasing out. 5d my favourite. Thanks to today’s setter and Twmbarlwm.

  15. Yes, certainly a mixed bag of clues today, several required reverse parsing which suggests that the wordplay was insufficient (for a back pager).
    However, I filled the grid without assistance, though 15d I got from the padding…….I’m still no wiser about the resort.
    Thanks to the setter and Twmbarlwm for confirming my answers.

  16. Quite hard for me this morning, and I needed T’s hints to finish–for 8d, 15d, & 21d. Just not with it today though I very much enjoyed 5d & 9d. Thanks to Twmbarlwm and today’s setter. *****/***

  17. As with last week, the puzzles seem to be a tad more challenging this time (fine by me). This one had mostly good clues, offering a medium tussle and plenty of entertainment/enjoyment. I especially liked (I was going to say joint favourites, but didn’t dare) were 12a and 5d. 3*/4*.

    *17d. Is that guy Peter Sellers? I was expecting Benjamin Franklin.

  18. As others have said, a bit of a curate’s egg today. About half of the answers went in without a problem, then I had a bit of a tussle. Spent far longer than should have been necessary looking at the anagram fodder for 28a, eventually coming up with a phrase I had never heard of, confirmed by the BRB.I liked 12a, but found the anagram indicator a little strange. Favourites were all the longer ones together with 14a, 23 and 5d. Thanks to the compiler and Twmbarlwm who confirmed a couple of my parsings.

  19. This was hard.
    But enjoyably so.
    So many gems, eg 1, 11, 23a and an and 9d.
    So, 3.5*/4*
    Many thanks to the setter and Twmbarlwm. Loved Mr. Kite.

  20. Tough one for me today and many hints required. Every day is a school day.
    Hint for 16a should use the word to the right of choir.
    Thanks to the setter and Twmbarlwm

  21. Monday and Tuesday have ceased to be fairly certain for me not to have a DNF. I did manage to finish but needed to refer to Twmbarlwm’s hints to confirm my faint entries.

    12a and 5d were the only clues with a star and I am dreading what I will be able to manage if the rest of the week’s puzzles by the same level of difficulty.

    28a brought to mind the marvellous writing about anchors, and the seafaring life, in The Mirror and the Sea by Joseph Conrad.

    My thanks to the setter and to Twmbarlwm for his very helpful hints.

      1. Indeed it is but I wouldn’t mind if Monday and Tuesday were left for those of us in the early stages or stuck there. But no they have to set the bar higher on a whim.

        It is good to say one enjoyed the puzzle but no enjoyment when your hair is lying on the floor and you have scratches all over your scalp.

  22. Well this was certainly a tough Tuesday puzzle in my books.

    3*/3* for me.

    Favourites include 1a, 12a, 16a, 24a, 3d & 7d with winner 7d

    As I solved this on Monday night I will need to look at the parsing for 5 of clues sometime on Tuesday to figure out why they were, what they were.

    Thanks to setter and Twmbarlwm

  23. I enjoyed the anagrams which gave me a good foothold, it was not an easy ride but I did eventually finish without resorting to Mr T’s hints, although at one stage I thought I would have to look up 28a. I put daisies against 12,16a and 7,9 &15d. Oh, and I liked 13a too. Thanks to the setter ( I began to think we might be in pangram alert) and to Mr Twm for explaining the convoluted 14a which was a bung in for me but of course beautifully justifiable.

  24. I found this quite tricky in places but managed to finish it OK in the end but had to read the hints afterwards to see how I got there. Thanks to all on a really horrid day here, cold, wet and miserable. As an experiment I cooked a joint of beef in my combination microwave last night – 22 minutes on medium turning half way through and then 5 minutes of combination oven and grill. Worked perfectly. Thanks to all for the puzzle.

  25. Again, a slog! I can’t say I enjoyed this, though some were delightful, 1a, 11a and 7d for instance. I’m fast losing interest again, having only just started back in earnest. Please, Mr. Telegraph, can you think of us with tiny brains from time to time?
    Thank you setter and Mr. T.

  26. After looking at the increasingly depressing articles in the rest of the paper it was a relief to turn to the puzzle page. What would we do without it?
    COTD 11a

    1. You can say that again. I’ve a mind to skip the news, go straight to the obits to see who’s had enough of it all & then to the puzzles on the basis that what you don’t know can’t depress you. The Matt cartoon made me chuckle mind.

  27. For me, a bit of a mixed bag with some very clever clues and a few I didn’t take to as they seemed overly manufactured, 1a being a prime example.
    I thought 12a a good example of it’s clue type and its joined on the podium by 5&21d.
    Many thanks to the setter and Twmbarlwm.

  28. I struggled through this one and got to the end without help…..but with a lot of unparsed answers…..not very satisfying.
    Too hard for a Tuesday .

    Thanks to the setter and to Twmbarlwm.

    Very cold here now. No snow yet .
    Mood not improved by my car dying on me approximately 200 yards from home after a hair – raising journey round the (very busy) ring road as it lost power all the way. Had to get the recovery truck out which took a while. I was not popular with my fellow motorists. Thankfully Mr Meringue came and relieved me of the waiting so I could get home and warm up. Now awaiting the verdict of the garage….the consensus at the moment is that the clutch has ‘gone’….whatever that means. A fair whack of money I expect. Sigh.

    1. A new clutch sounds an expensive outcome from your difficult day. Cars are great when everything goes smoothly, fingers crossed that the garage finds something simple to fix.
      I did reasonably well with the puzzle today but 9d foxed me completely. I had many versions none of which fitted. Good to see the puzzle on the back page for once. Thanks to setter and T.

  29. I haven’t read the comments as I haven’t got my glasses, I’m doing this by braille. I think my favourite was 18a. Thanks to the setter and T.

  30. Stupidly got stuck at the end with 28a. My fault as I omitted to notice it is two words and kept trying all the remaining letters. When I realised two words the second one was easy and the first could only be one thing. The other two that detained me were 18a and 17d. Once I had the confidence to enter the former the latter followed swiftly on. I have not heard that expression meaning try something out. 13a and 9d favourites. Thanks setter and Mr T.

  31. Well goodness knows how or why but I did very well- for me that is! Helped by the anagrams and hidden words. Just two left but will do them later. Thanks to Mr T and setter. Also thank goodness for hot water bottles – just replenished and hot cup of tea – bliss on this very cold morning.

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