Toughie 179 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 179

Toughie No 179 by Shamus

Shamus at his best!

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

Breaking a run of Elgar and Excalibur on alternate Fridays, we have this excellent puzzle from Shamus.  I liked the artistic flavour and really enjoyed this one.


1a Artist, liberal one in representation of a mini god (10)
{MODIGLIANI} – this artist comes from L(iberal) and I (one) inside an anagram (representation) of A MINI GOD

6a Self-satisfied son with dupe (4)
{SMUG} – a synonym for self-satisfied is a charade of S(on) and MUG (dupe)

9a Watch impressionist after time describing a reception? (6-4)
{TICKER-TAPE} – another charade – TICKER (watch) and APE (impressionist) after T(ime)

10a Sports venue not new in locality (4)

13a Home Counties lecturer entering foul city (7)
{SEVILLE} – SE (South East England / Home Counties) is followed by L(ecturer) inside (entering) VILE (foul) to get this Spanish city

15a Home with potential for upward mobility? (6)
{HANGAR} – a cryptic definition of a home for aircraft

16a Arouse understanding, we hear (6)
{INCITE} – sounds like insight (understanding)

17a Very important like a rogue asteroid potentially? (15)
{EARTHSHATTERING} – don’t look for an anagram here, it’s an excellent cryptic definition

18a Overthrow of French achievement (6)
{DEFEAT} – this overthrow comes from DE (of, French) and FEAT (achievement)

20a Some troops feature in paper (6)
{COLUMN} – a double definition

21a It’s raised after, say, short request from landlord? (5,2)
{DRINK UP} – this is what the pub landlord asks you to do at closing time, and it’s a charade of UP (raised) after DRINK ( say, short) – see the setter’s comment below

22a Uninteresting feature of star identified (4)
{ARID} – a synonym for uninteresting is hidden inside (feature of) stAR IDentified

25a Purpose initially lacking before game — producing restlessness (10)
{IMPATIENCE} – (A)IM (purpose, initially lacking) then PATIENCE (card game) producing a word meaning restlessness

26a Nervous BBC official within confines of embassy (4)
{EDGY} – a synonym for nervous is derived from DG (Director General / BBC official) inside EY (confines of EmbassY

27a Ministers hoped riots had dispersed (10)
{PRIESTHOOD} – these ministers are an anagram of HOPED RIOTS


1d Silent Greek character, note (4)
{MUTE} – a synonym for silent that is a charade of MU (Greek character) and TE (note)

2d Channel avoided, we hear (4)
{DUCT} – this channel sounds like ducked

3d Man’s report of Egyptian place (6)
{GEEZER} – and this man sounds like Giza

4d Currently a handy diet? Gain’s disputed (2,4,3,3,3)
{IN THIS DAY AND AGE} – a phrase meaning currently which is an anagram of A HANDY DIET GAIN’S

5d European captivated by translation of plain language (6)
{NEPALI} – put E(uropean) inside an anagram of PLAIN to get this language

7d Island drink that’s found in bistro? (10)
{MARTINIQUE} – a Caribbean island that comes from MARTINI (drink) and QUE (that, assuming that French is spoken in a bistro)

8d Indian state with resort of paupers to be unused? (2,1,7)
{GO A BEGGING} – combine GOA (Indian state) and BEGGING (the last resort of paupers) to get a synonym for unused

11d Poor connecting element in story save Spain (10)
{THREADBARE} – a word meaning poor that is a charade of THREAD (connecting  element in story) BAR (save) and E (IVR code for Spain)

12d Firmly incorporating English adventurer’s activity on river? (10)
{ENGRAFTING} – a word meaning firmly incorporating comes from ENG(lish) and RAFTING (adventurer’s activity on river)

13d A quiet male detained by pathetic fool (7)
{SAPHEAD} – put A P (a quiet) and HE  (male) inside (detained by) SAD (pathetic) to get a fool

14d Cover loveless work penned by revolutionary author (7)
{ENVELOP} – a word meaning to cover that comes from N(O)VEL (loveless work of fiction) inside (penned by) Edgar Allan POE (author) reversed (revolutionary)

19d Group amid high point producing disturbance (6)
{TREMOR} – put REM (pop group) inside TOR (high point) to get a disturbance

ARVE Error: need id and provider

20d Young reporter is beginning to torment painter (6)
{CUBIST} – a charade of CUB (young reporter) IS and T (beginning to Torment) gives a member of a particular school of painting

23d Data kept in main folder (4)
{INFO} – this data is hidden in maIN FOlder

24d Dreamy expert ignoring King in quarrel (4)
{FEUD} – take Sigmund F(R)EUD, that expert on dreams, and remove the R (ignoring Rex / King) to get a quarrel

Some excellent clues make it difficult to select a favourite – what did you think?

9 comments on “Toughie 179

  1. I enjoyed this one, my favourite clue was 17a, because I spent an age looking for a non existent anagram. I have never heard of arid as anthing other than dry and 13d seems a silly word to me.

  2. Bigboab, although 13d may look like a silly word. It does conform to the gospel according to Chambers :-)

    1. Libellule, I am sure you are right but as I told BD the other day my wife has “loaned” my Chambers to my eldest daughter and I am at present hoping my birthday will bring a new one in a couple of weeks. I still think it’s a silly word however.

        1. Libellule, I know but I just love reading reference books rather than on line, I guess I’m just old.

  3. Many thanks for the blog and comments. Hope it was an enjoyable end to the Toughie week. 21ac was supposed to be a charade of drink (short, say)+up (raised) but you got the definition all the same!

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