Toughie 226 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

Toughie 226

Toughie No 226 by Kcit

Put through the Mangle?

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **** Enjoyment **

After finishing this one I felt as if I had been put through the mangle! It was moderately difficult but I didn’t enjoy doing it. Some of the wordplay still eludes me so maybe I might change my mind later.

Leave a comment telling us what you thought. You can also add your assessment by selecting from one to five stars at the bottom of the post.


8a Head covering that’s ruined in the rain (7)
{HAIRNET} – an anagram of THE RAIN – “in” is just padding

10a Sea creature heading off to eat seabird at all times (7)
{ETERNAL} – remove S (heading off) from a sea creature and insert a seabird

11a I’m ready to go to University at a moment’s notice (9)
{IMPROMPTU} – a charade of I’M, a synonym for ready and U(niversity) and you have on the spur of the moment, a moment’s notice

12a Doctor about to snatch this violin? That’s dramatic (5)
{AMATI} – I’m not sure what you call this type of clue, see what you think – if DR (Doctor) and C (circa / about) were to grab (snatch) this well-known type of violin, then you would have drAMATIc

13a Irish location’s second language not given name (5)
{SLIGO} – S(econd) plus LI(N)GO without the N(ame)

14a The Parisian gets very hot after running in part of Africa (7)
{LESOTHO} – LE gets SO (very) and an anagram of HOT gives a part of Africa – I didn’t like this one, how about you?

17a It contains an expanse of white and is enough to make art critic cancel (9,6)

19a Praise encountered in part of theatre? (7)
{PLAUDIT} – is this an all-in-one? – LAUD (praise) inside PIT gives another type of praise

21a Exotic creature taking tips from flower-seller (5)

24a Light to start to reillumine church (5)
{TORCH} – TO with R (start to Reillumine) and CH(urch)

26a Agitated farm animal that is caught in snarled net (9)
{EBULLIENT} – put this aggressive farm animal and IE (that is) inside an anagram of NET

27a Henry brought in permit to enter copse (7)
{THICKET} – put H(enry), the SI unit of inductance, inside a permit to enter

28a Cargo boat not about to become military craft (7)
{FIGHTER} – F(RE)IGHTER – very similar to a recent clue (DT 49)


1d Insect identified by most of the instances of clothing damage (6)
{THRIPS} –any insect of the order Thysanoptera, especially a minute black insect, common in flowers can be created from a charade of TH(E) and RIPS

2d Agony amid dreadful toil? The stock-in-trade of many an artist (3,5)
{OIL PAINT} – put PAIN inside an anagram of TOIL – maybe an allusion to The Agony and the Ecstasy, who knows (who cares)?

3d Plain ramshackle loo, still receiving treatment externally (10)
{UNCOLOURED} – put an anagram of LOO inside UNCURED

4d Show respect to Greece’s foremost elite, stifling rising amusement (9)
{GENUFLECT} – to bend a knee you need to put G(reece) and ELECT around FUN reversed

5d Goddess – and the best mark she’ll give? (4)
{HERA} – give HER an A – maybe the best mark, but not the best clue

6d Child, I note, following soldier (6)
{INFANT} – I N(ote) F(ollowing) ANT – people as far away as Australia can hear Tilsit sucking his teeth!

7d Man, perhaps, standing up on new rock in theatrical location (8)
{ELSINORE} – reverse ISLE (of Man) on top of N(ew) and ORE to get the location of the play Hamlet

9d Record the fifth source of water? (4)
{TAPE} – Tap A, Tap B ……

15d Various Gaels, circling rising ground, encountering hard weapon (10)
{SHILLELAGH} – an anagram of GAELS around HILL is followed by H(ard) to get this oak or blackthorn cudgel

16d Oscar’s condition around Tuesday — briefly tense? (9)
{STATUETTE} – put STATE around TUE(sday) and T(ense) to get an Oscar

17d Liking copy that includes little for Sarkozy (8)
{APPETITE} – a liking that comes from a word meaning to copy around the French masculine for little

18d Escort vessel – check last of ballast in centre (8)
{CORVETTE} – put VET and (ballas)T inside CORE

20d Very worried Force will interrupt a heist (6)
{AFRAID} – F(orce) goes inside A RAID

22d Surgical treatment certain to restrict two regular members of United (6)
{SUTURE} – put SURE around UT and then explain how U and T are regular members of United, or even Utd

23d A fanatic regarding muscle development? (4)
{BUFF} – OK, one definition is a fanatic, but the other totally eludes me

25d Commencement of hostilities, also known as a war dance (4)
{HAKA} – Hostilities, Also Known As

ARVE Error: need id and provider

Here endeth the review.

15 comments on “Toughie 226

  1. Dave,
    I agree 100% with what you say. I did this and then wondered why I had done it…. there was no real satisfaction in completing it, just relief.

  2. Funnily enough, I thought it a bit of a work out but didn’t have that satisfied feeling when I had finished. I thought that 17d was PENCHANT to start with and was unhappy with TAPE until the penny sudenly dropped.

    If you had put this in front of me and asked me to name the setter, I wouldn’t have thought of this as one of Kcit’s. It didn’t have the feel of his other daily puzzles elsewhere, which I enjoy very much.

  3. 23d. ODE:
    buff: adjective – North American informal (of a person or their body) in good physical shape with well-developed muscles.

  4. As the cryptic was so easy today, I thought I’d try the Toughie. Possibly not the best one to start with.

    With a great deal of difficulty, and still not sure how, in some cases, got all but 12a & 5d. I thought 12a was a terrible clue, and would never have worked it out. Where’s the anagram indicator for “hot” in 14a?

    19a. I got “plaudit” from “praise”. Couldn’t see how therest of the clue worked – and still can’t!

    9d. Is a tap a source of water, or something used to control its flow?

  5. It was quite unsatisfying – got our answers mostly by guessing, and certainly more by luck than judgement! Thanks, Gazza for the ‘BUFF’ explanation.

  6. Where does the SI for inductance come into 27a? I just brought H into Ticket to get a synonym for copse?.

    And please enlighten me on the indicators that show an initial letter should be used? I understanding beheading, leading character, starters, etc, but how do you know that you need F for following or Force, or N for Note (or is it Name)?

    Otherwise, I had some startlingly accurate guesses without really knowing why, Sometimes I thought the answers were so obvious, I had to be wrong.

    Difficult, yes – Never heard of Amati Violins, I’m more a Fender/Gibson/Rickenbecker fan myself), Enjoyable – a little,


    1. 27a – I was making the point that H as a replacement for Henry is not, as is often thought, an abbreviation of the name but the symbol for the Henry, the SI unit of inductance.

      The initial letters that you mentioned are actually abbreviations of the words concerned, all are to be found in Chambers.

  7. Got there with a lot of tenacity and brow furrowing!

    I see what you mean about the enjoyment factor. It was a bit like struggling up a mountain, getting to the top and, instead of being able to enjoy the view, you are surrounded by cloud. The exercise has done you good but there is no real pleasure at the end.

  8. In the last month I have started to try these ‘toughies’. I found this website as well which has left me often thinking ‘oh yes, it was easy really’ when of course it wasn’t. Thanks to those who run this site for working out the answers, and for having found such a cool way of explaining them.

    Today was the closest I have come to completing any of the puzzles so far, so I actually enjoyed it. I missed 1d, 5d, 6d, 7d, and 12a so mainly got stuck in the top corner.

    On another point, is there any reason why The Toughie is only offered Tues-Friday?

    1. Welcome to the blog Hoddros

      The only reason that I can think of is there are General knowledge puzzles on Saturday and Monday.

Comments are closed.