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Toughie 507

Toughie No 507 by Beam

A lesson in English

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

Beam (aka Ray T) lives in Paris, where he teaches the finer points of the English language to French journalists. This is evident in the two long answers in today’s excellent puzzle.

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1a    Naughty setter’s rubbish! (6)
{IMPISH} – a word meaning naughty is a charade of the setter is, in the first person, and a synonym for rubbish

4a    Abandon Circle Line train (8)
(DISCLAIM} – a word meaning to abandon or renounce is a charade of a circle (4), L(ine) and to train or point a rifle

10a    Right old tantrum, taken in by fellow extortionist (9)
{PROFITEER) – put R(ight), O(ld) and a tantrum inside a fellow who is one’s equal to get an extortionist who takes advantage of an emergency – the answer can be a noun, as here, or a verb

11a    Bikini perhaps everybody takes to! (5)
{ATOLL} – the site, in the Marshall Islands, used by the US between 1946 and 1958 for testing nuclear weapons, is an example of this – put a word meaning everybody around TO

12a    Doctor’s aid for depression? (7)
{SPATULA} – a cryptic definition of a thin flat instrument used by a doctor to depress the tongue

13a    Strong support for capital punishment (7)
{GALLOWS} – a cryptic definition of a structure, typically of two uprights and a crosspiece, for the hanging of criminals

14a    Found in tome, Galileo’s last letter (5)
{OMEGA} – hidden (found) inside the clue is the last letter of the Greek alphabet

15a    Italy, Germany and the French head for stagnation (8)
{IDLENESS} – a charade of the IVR codes for Italy and Germany, the French definite article and a headland gives a word meaning stagnation

18a    Wellington say, left from Waterloo, destroyed France first (8)
{FOOTWEAR} – a wellington boot is an example of this – an anagram (destroyed) of WATER(L)OO without the L(eft) is preceded by the IVR code for France

20a    Bounder embracing yours truly, Casanova (5)
{ROMEO} – put this Australian bounder around a pronoun which means the same as yours truly to get a Casanova

23a    Fellow useless in physical denial (7)
{REFUSAL} – put F(ellow) and useless or unserviceable inside a word meaning physical or actual to get a denial

25a    Timeless Queen number in overdue return (7)
(ETERNAL} – a word meaning timeless is created by putting Elizabeth Regina and N(umber) inside a reversal of a word meaning overdue

26a    ‘Super’ in Police Department patrolled (5)
{PACED} – put an exclamation similar to “super” inside the P(olice) D(epartment) to get a word meaning patrolled

27a    Wild new wife embracing left in semi-nude (9)
{UNBRIDLED} – an adjective meaning wild or unrestrained is built from N(ew) and a (new) wife around (embracing) L(eft) all inside the middle half (semi) of nUDe – I suppose there is no reason why half of a word can’t be the middle half, but usually there is an indication of this

28a    Lunatic escaped before midnight, caught in act (8)
{DERANGED} – an adjective meaning lunatic is derived by putting escaped or fled (3) and G (mid niGht) inside (caught in) an act

29a    Heard when approaching time to kill Caesar? (6)
{ASIDES} – to get these words spoken by an actor which the other persons on the stage are supposed not to hear combine a synonym for when with time in March to kill Julius Caesar


1d    Cheat one married, after gold (8)
{IMPOSTOR} – this cheat is a charade of I (one), M(arried), a word meaning after and the heraldic term for gold

2d    Lay horizontal covering half of sofa (7)
{PROFANE} – a word meaning lay or secular is derived by putting a word meaning horizontal or prostrate around (covering) the second half of soFA

3d    Drug for man with lust, it turned out (9)
{STIMULANT} – this drug or tonic is an anagram (turned out) of MAN with LUST IT

5d    Eat, drink and be…? (9,5)
{IRREGULAR VERBS} – these three are examples that fall outside the standard patterns of conjugation

6d    Writhe naked in club, half gone (5)
{CRAWL} – a word meaning to writhe or squirm is created by putting a word meaning naked inside the first half of CLub

7d    Almost get up after a flash of love (7)
{AMOROUS} – almost all of a word meaning to get up in the morning follows A and a flash or instant to get an adjective meaning of love

8d    Harry, good man to follow spy (6)
{MOLEST} – a word meaning to harry or annoy is constructed by putting Crosswordland’s usual good man after a spy who infiltrates a rival organization

9d    Who could possibly open this? (8,6)
{RELATIVE CLAUSE} – our English lesson continues with a cryptic definition of a part of a sentence introduced by the pronoun “who”

16d    Where issue may be raised (9)
{NURSERIES} – issue here means children – think where they might be raised

17d    Pass disinformation about Democrat creating conflicts (8)
{COLLIDES} – start with a mountain pass and follow it with disinformation or untruths placed around D(emocrat) to get a verb meaning conflicts or clashes

19d    Policeman providing back-up in new force (7)
{OFFICER} – this policeman is built by reversing (back-up) a word meaning providing or on condition (2) inside an anagram (new) of FORCE

21d    Guy George initially governed and falsified (7)
{MANGLED} – a charade of a guy, G (George initially) and governed or commanded gives a word meaning falsified or distorted

22d    Stand and fall with endless rum (6)
{TRIPOD} – a stand used with, for example, a camera is a charade of a fall and most of a synonym for rum or strange

24d    Education in hospital to produce litter (5)
{SEDAN} – put ED(ucation) inside a shortened form of an isolation hospital to get a litter or covered chair for one person

A thoroughly enjoyable puzzle, my only complaint being the paucity of scope for illustration!

28 comments on “Toughie 507

  1. Thoroughly enjoyable crossword from Ray T completed before I arrived in middle of 18a! Favourite clues were 4a and 5d. Many thanks to the setter and to BD for the review.

  2. I like a Beam that makes me ‘beam’ as this one did, although saying that I did have a bit of a tussle with the NE corner, 4a being my last one in. I did wonder about the English grammar lesson – thanks for the explanation BD and for the rest of the review. Thanks to Ray for the crossword – no particular favourites today just liked the good all round mix.

  3. Super crossword from Beam (or RayT), Favourite clues were 10a, 2d and 5d. thanks RayT (or Beam ) and thanks Dave for the review.

  4. With regard to the lack of opportunities for illustrations – you know what Gazza would have snuck in for 11a :D

    1. CS, I thought that I was being particularly restrained with my choice of illustration for “chemise” in the Cryptic :D

  5. A nice start to the Toughie week – I had to put this down for a while, and come back to it later.
    Is the ‘US’ in 23a an abbreviation for unserviceable?
    Thanks to RayT for the grammar lesson, and to BD for the notes.

    1. US or U/S is an abbreviation for unserviceable according to Chambers. Before I looked it up I always thought it was an abbreviation for Unfit for Service. You pays your money …..

  6. Enjoyed this one so thanks to Beam.
    Luckily I had grammar drummed into me at primary school by a veritable old dragon called Mrs Reynolds! It comes in useful at times.(she was particularly keen on the correct use of the apostrophe as I recall).
    Needed a hint from crypticsue to understand where the answer to 4a comes from but otherwise OK.
    Thanks for the review BD.

  7. Good all round puzzle which required some concentration as nothing really leapt out of the page and answers had to be worked for.

    Thanks to Beam for the enjoyment and to BD for the notes.

  8. I suppose that I should have “clicked” on the grammar theme but missed it, so 9d was tricky as I must have been in need of a 4d or 28a during that part of my education. Thoroughly enjoyable and fair challenge, and ta to you both.

  9. Cracking start to the week from Beam, struggled quite a bit with 9d favourite clue 4a . Thanks to Beam and Big Dave for the review.

  10. Very good introduction to the Toughie week. Just above average solving time forme with the NE corner holding out the longest. Thanks ti RayT and BD.

  11. As it’s quiet at the moment, I just wanted to check if I’ve got the hang of emoticons. :wink: BD, please edit out this comment.

    1. BTW – on the subject of 1A, it uses the same device used by the same setter last week at 4A in DT26466, where the setter refers to him/herself in the third person in the clue and the first person in the solution.

  12. Thanks to BD for the review, and I’m pleased that it went down well. Perhaps even Barrie would appreciate 1 across…

    Reading Dave’s preamble reminded me that biographical details about most of the compilers can be found in Jonathan Crowther’s book ‘The A-Z of Crosswords’, if anybody’s interested.

    Ray T

      1. Hi Digby,

        No, the combination of the crosswords which I do for the Telegraph and the few days of teaching each week keeps me busy enough!

        Ray T

  13. O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay! I am proud of myself: finished the Toughie. I’d call the setter (a href=””>Stingray today. I certainly got stung.

    Here’s the list of my difficulties:
    1. Did not know the word “pish” in 1a but that was not a problem as “naughty” + I’M was ample to get it.
    2. 4a was a hard nut. I must remember “disc” for circle. I have seen it before. Train=AIM ain’t so obvious either.
    3. 23a: “useless” = “US”, wow.
    4. … and most other clues ;-)

    A very beautiful xw!
    My top clues: 4a, 18a for its smooth surface, 17d for the very hidden charade.

    1. In Scotland, the word formed by the last four letters of the solution to 1A is also used to mean “rubbish”, although it’s a rather stronger term because of its literal meaning hereabouts.

  14. I should have known better than to take on a Ray T Toughie! Got ½ way through then the grey matter refused to engage operational mode.

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