Toughie No 96 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie No 96

Toughie No 96 by Shamus

An enjoyable puzzle, but not too difficult

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

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

One or two clues you need to find the answer, and then work out the wordplay, but generally this is a solid puzzle, with none of the tenuous clues we have had recently.


7a Composer with caution knocked back wine (8 )
Berg (composer) erac (caution knocked back) giving a wine – and a detective!!

9a Work from museum left out enthralling European (6)
(L)ouvre (museum, left out) around (enthralling) E(uropean) giving a synonym for work that has been used several times in recent crosswords

10a Shrink from Italian author, one found in reference library (6)
(Umberto) Eco (Italian author) + i (one) inside (found in)  rl (reference library) giving a word meaning to shrink from

11a Huge part of London featuring in report (8 )
A synonym for huge which sounds like (featuring in report) Wapping (part of London)

12a Stay with expert and buy a woven hanging of note (6,8 )
An anagram of “stay + expert + buy a” giving a depiction of the Norman Conquest

15a Piece of escapism, ugly and complacent (4)
Hidden (piece of) in the clue

17a Medic behind plan (5)
Dr (medic) aft (behind)

19a Highly disagreeable station (4)
Double meaning – offensively strong-scented and a position in society

20a Old film, version of Psycho? I’m bored after screening’s end (7,2,5)
A clever anagram (version of) of (psycho I’m bored) following (after) g (screening ‘s end) giving a classic film

23a A negotiation without a second in foreign city (8 )
A del (deal / negotiation without “a”) aide (second) giving an Australian city

25a Drink from island I left – and half of another! (6)
Egg (Eigg / island I left) nog(gin) (half of another drink) giving a drink

27a Inspector beginning to learn a bit (6)
Morse (Detective Chief Inspector Endeavour Morse) l (beginning to learn)

28a Taunt deviously seen to trap old cynic (8 )
Dig (Taunt) + an anagram (deviously) of seen around (to trap) o(ld) giving a Grecian cynic


1d Appetiser consumed by some zealously (4)
Hidden (consumed by) in the clue is a Greek starter

2d Pass by Milanese chap avoiding sun (6)
Signore (Italian / Milanese chap) without (ignoring) the “s” (sun)

3d Boat with menacing look docked (4)
Scowl (menacing look) without the last letter (docked)

4d Merry soldier touring island (6)
Joe (American term for a soldier) around (touring) Cos (Greek island, also known as Kos)

5d Sally comes from one actually hiding extra note? Right (8 )
Quite (actually) around (hiding) PS (extra note) then R(ight) giving the person (comes from one) making a witty remark (sally)

6d Type taken with incessant chatter holding tin providing crisp food (6,4)
Brand (type) with yap (incessant chatter) around (holding) Sn (Stannum – chemical symbol for tin) giving a crisp food (didn’t this come up recently?)- have you seen “The Mine”: a new addition to the blog which has, among other things, a list Chemical elements and their symbols?

8d Loose liberal standing in front of fire tucking into wine (7)
L(iberal) then (standing in front of) axe (to fire / dismiss) all inside (tucking) into Red (wine)

13d A jolly ancient academic in epic conflict (10)
A RM (jolly – a nickname for a Royal Marine) aged (ancient) don (academic) in
the final epic conflict

14d Regulars in hard gang few saw (5)
Even letters (regulars) in hArD gAnG fEw

16d Revolting actress once taken round house by university lecturer (8 )
(Lillian) Gish, or maybe (Sheila) Gish, (actress once) around (taken round) ho(use) + u(niversity) + l(ecturer)

18d Row about crime not advanced? It has an explosive impact (7)
To do (row) around (about) r(a)pe (rape without the “a” / crime / not advanced)

21d Woman in match imbibing litre? It shows vanity (6)
Bride (woman in match) around (imbibing) l(itre)

22d Poet improvised gush about ambassador (6)
An anagram (improvised) of gush around (about) HE (His Excellency / ambassador) giving a former Poet Laureate

24d Books produced by journalist and lawyer (4)
Ed (editor / journalist) and DA (lawyer) giving Scandinavian books

26d Fearsome gathering missing leader? It’ll turn up the heat (4)
(C)oven (coven – fearsome gathering missing leader)

By the way, if you use Firefox as your browser, you may be interested in the CoolPreviews add-on – this allows you to see embedded input in a preview window, I use it all the time.
“Just mouse over any link, and a preview window immediately appears to show you the content”.

In the meantime, feel free to comment.

2 comments on “Toughie No 96

  1. Thanks for your appreciative comments, Dave. Your website looks excellent and should prove invaluable for Telegraph solvers – as well as for Telegraph setters to see how their work has been received!

    Very best wishes for your future success.



  2. Thank you for you kind comments, Shamus. Somehow the setter of the puzzle is the last person that I expected to be reading my review, so it was a very pleasant surprise when you looked in.
    Regards – Dave

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