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Toughie 383

Toughie No 383 by Cephas

Mother Hubbard should have looked here!

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

While not one of the more difficult Toughies, well it is Tuesday after all, there’s still plenty to savour in this puzzle!

Please 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.


1a    Braves declare it avoids humiliation (4-5)
{FACE-SAVER} – a verb meaning braves is followed by to declare to get a course of action that avoids humiliation

6a    Go round double speed (5)
{OOMPH} – go, in the sense of enthusiasm, is built up from a round character repeated (double) and the measure used for speed in the UK

9a    Cheerful, notedly so (7)
{ALLEGRO} – a musical term for playing rapidly or lively – I’m sure that cheerful was not an adjective used to describe those unfortunate enough to have purchased this model of Austin

10a    Become despondent having three also involved (4,5)
{LOSE HEART} – a phrase meaning to become despondent is an anagram (involved) of THREE ALSO

11a    A book about fruit providing nourishment (7)
{ALIMENT} – put a book, or rather set of books of the bible, around a citrus fruit to get nourishment or food

12a    Appreciated lady was in dire need (7)
{ENJOYED} – to get a word meaning appreciated put a lady’s name inside an anagram (dire) of NEED

13a    Chipboard Ken cut round cook’s facility (7,8)
{KITCHEN CUPBOARD} – an anagram (round) of CHIPBOARD KEN CUT gives a cook’s storage facility

18a    They were wise taking no time to reach the line (7)
{MAGINOT} – a charade of wise men with NO and T(ime) gives a system of fortifications constructed by the French along their eastern border during the 1930s, outflanked by German forces in 1940

20a    Bachelor Troy leaving gate to be destroyed by fire (4,3)
{BURN OUT} – B(atchelor) effectively replaces T(roy) in the number of people who pay to enter a sports ground for an event to get a phrasal verb meaning to be destroyed by fire

22a    Tear round animal that had given up (9)
{RENOUNCED} – put a word meaning to tear around the snow leopard to get word meaning given up

23a    Brave man in luxury tourer (7)
{GALLANT} – a word meaning brave is constructed by putting a man’s name inside a Gran Turismo

24a    Grounds, say, debtors included (5)
{DREGS} – the remnants of a liquid left in a container (grounds) come from the abbreviation for say, or for example, inside the abbreviation for debtors

25a    Begin to print new posters with energy first (2,2,5)
{GO TO PRESS} – a phrase meaning to begin to print is generated from an anagram (new) of POSTERS preceded by a word meaning energy or 6 across


1d           Beat sailor getting the biscuit (8)
{FLAPJACK} – Combine beat, in the sense of to beat wings, with one of those names for a sailor to get a biscuit made with rolled oats and syrup

2d           Settler Mark is going to Thailand (8)
{COLONIST} – this settler is a charade of a punctuation mark, IS and T (the IVR code for Thailand)

3d           Net South American part of 19 (6)
{SAGENE} – I have some vague recollection of seeing this fishing net before, but it was a while ago – combine S(outh) A(merican) with part of the answer to 19 down – a large vertical fishing-net whose ends are brought together and hauled is called a seine, from the Greek σαγήνη or sagenea fishing net

4d           Nameless furious lady (6)
{VIOLET} – remove the N(ame) from a word meaning furious to get a lady’s name – “I’ll thcream and thcream ’till I’m thick”

5d           Philosopher found in women’s clothing, topless (8)
{ROUSSEAU} – to get this French philosopher and writer remove the first letter (topless) from the clothes collected by a bride for her marriage

6d           Performing definite duty at work (2,3,3)
{ON THE JOB} – combine a word meaning performing with a definite duty to get a phrase meaning “at work”

7d           Unwholesome condition of youngster during month (6)
{MALADY} – to get an illness or disease put a youngster inside the fifth month

8d           The man would take food in warmed (6)
{HEATED} – put HE’D (the man would) around to take food to get a word meaning warmed

14d         Henry’s playing around in the country (8)
{HONDURAS} – regular reader will recognise this as one of my least-favourite constructs – A B in meaning to put B inside A – H represents the Henry, the SI unit of inductance, so put H’S around and anagram (playing) of AROUND to get this Central American Republic

15d         Observant while practically incognito (8)
{NOTICING} – a word meaning observant is an anagram of practically all of INCOGNIT(O) – or is it?  Tell me if you know better, as this one doesn’t work for me.

16d         Renegade petty officer in Utah, say (8)
{APOSTATE} – this person who has abandoned their religion is derived by putting P(etty) O(fficer) inside one of a number of political communities forming a federation under a central government (Utah, say)

17d         Stride out grasping half ballet-skirt from remains (8)
{DETRITUS} – put an anagram (out) of STRIDE around (grasping) half of a ballet-skirt to get remains or waste

18d         Prominent old boat entering sea (6)
{MARKED} – this adjective meaning prominent is derived by putting Noah’s old boat inside the Mediterranean Sea

19d         Ring yours truly following up intelligence hereditary info (6)
{GENOME} – put O (ring) and ME (yours truly) after (following up) intelligence to get the complete set of chromosomes of an individual (hereditary info)

20d         Move tons using sum of money allowed (6)
{BUDGET} – a word meaning to move or stir is followed by T(ons) to get a sum of money allowed for a set period of time

21d         Bundle to turn over out of bed (4,2)
{ROLL UP} – a charade of to turn over and out of bed gives a definition that could be a fight or a bundle of tobacco; if the latter then the answer should be hyphenated – I suppose this might be a bundle of luggage, but I can find no definition in Chambers or the ODE to support this

Let me know if you have a better analysis of 15d or 21d (or any other clue, come to that).

23 comments on “Toughie 383

  1. I am really enjoying the Toughies lately. Agree with BD assessment with regard to difficulty and enjoyment today. 4d my favourite because I do know a little girl with that name who was quite “furious” at times.

      1. No, sadly, a great niece who’s contemporaries referred to her as the word in the clue, and couldn’t understand why the grown ups laughed.

  2. I didn’t like this one much at all for some reason, certainly not toughie standard. Thanks for the review BD.

  3. Very enjoyable! Probably because I actually finished it for once! Didn’t understand 20a and still don’t, and why is the first part of 1a braves? favourites 6a 18a and 20d

    1. 20a B for bachelor and Turnout with T(roy)
      1a A 5 letter word for Braves is the first 5 letters of the answer.

    2. 20a is B(atchelor) + (T)URNOUT. The T that is removed is short for Troy weight.

      1a is FACE S (braves) + AVER (declare) – to face something is stand up to or to brave

  4. I found it fun and not too hard – completed in two chunks on tube and fag break.
    Favourites were 5d and 11a
    thanks to Cephas and BD for the review

  5. Enjoyable, and not too tricky. Thanks to Cephas for a gentle starter to the toughie week.
    The only explanation I am waiting for is 3d. I have solved it correctly from the wordplay, but is the answer a type of net?

    1. Yes. I looked up the answer in Chambers when I sorted the wordplay – it is defined as a fishing net or network.

  6. Fairly straightforward today and a good start to the Toughie week. Many thanks to Cephas for an entertaining puzzle and to BD for the notes.

  7. In 21d I took bundle to be a verb – for example, roll up a sleeping-bag, say, into a bundle.

  8. 3d Net South American part of 19 (6)

    3d, I believe, is rather more cryptic than on first reading.

    One may have thought from the clue that all that was necessary was to take ‘S’ and ‘A’ and add a part of 19d, normally an instruction to use consecutive letters from that word. But that doesn’t work in this instance and with no instruction to select four letters at will.

    However the last four letters of 2d are actually a component part of 19d (along with chromosomes etc.,) and therefore is a ‘bit of’ and not a ‘part of’ 19d.

    That’s my logic anyway.

    1. Dennis

      That is what I meant – it’s difficult sometimes to explain these clues without using the words in the answer. Had I thought it was random letters from the word I would have said so, and complained about it as well!

  9. Thankyou Jezza and B.D. only just got back online but saw why anyway! Thanks, I’m usually so late doing the D.T. and Toughie I just read the repartee amongst the rest of you, I’ve had my first answer today!! And I love it!!

  10. Enjoyed this today from Cephas as a Cryptic crossword very similar in style and difficulty (I thought) to his most recent Saturday’s prize offering. Now, Saturday’s I was somewhat critical of (probably due to the much-commented 28a and its lack of apostrophe) and not in a constructive way, merely personal opinion – probably saved from BD’s subsequent ire only by the fact that Gazza agreed with me……….
    If Phil McNeil had used Saturday’s version for one of these easier Toughies or a mystery Thursday type-thing, then I think it would have passed by with much less adverse comment. Perhaps we’ve all got used to recent Saturday Prize Cryptics being more approachable so that loads of people can enter outside the ‘anorak’ brigade. And why not……..
    This is the internet, and generally the Grauniad Saturday Prize version is tougher and free and online, we have a choice.

    1. To be fair, the Telegraph NEVER shows apostrophes in the enumeration. I can’t think of a quality newspaper that does.

      1. Agreed, BD – I forget these things and tend to blame punctuation irregularities on CluedUp, which may be undeserved. I haven’t bought a DT newspaper for 3 years now and tend to forget how I used to do the crosswords with pen and paper.

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