ST 2582 (Hints)

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2582 (Hints)

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, I will select a few of the better clues and provide hints for them.

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    The PM is perturbed about a fellow on board (8)
Put an anagram (perturbed) of THE PM IS around A to get a fellow seaman

9a    I put in short pieces on a page (8)
the whole of this all-in-one clue provides the definition – put I inside an anagram (pieces) of SHORT and precede it with A P(age)

20a    Don, for example, follows his lead in club (6)
Put the geographic feature of which the Don is an example after the first letter od Don to get a golf club

28a    Religious sailor’s evil acts at sea (8)
A two-letter word meaning religious is followed by yet another word for a sailor to give performing evil acts at sea


2d    Principal policy that gets first reading? (8)
A charade of a principal, in a school perhaps, and a policy gives the first thing that you read in a newspaper srticle

3d    Coward’s acts soldier survives (7,5)
This famous play by Sir Noël Coward is a charade of a soldier and a verb meaning survives

7d    A certain amount of mass attack’s ending, as heard on radio (4)
This amount of mass is the NATO phonetic alphabet’s representation of the last (ending) letter of attacK

19d    Exhibitionist’s call to new security personnel (8)
What an exhibitionist might say (5,2) followed by N(ew) gives these security personnel

25d    Game with call deciding winner at match point (4)
A cryptic definition of a card game where the first person to call when a match is made is the winner

If you need further help then please ask and I will see what I can do.

As this is a Prize crossword, please don’t put whole or partial answers or alternative clues in your comment, else they may be censored!



  1. Posted April 3, 2011 at 11:23 am | Permalink

    Another very satifying Sunday puzzle from Virgilius. Favourites were21a as it took me ages to see it and the marvellous All-in-one at 9a.
    Thanks to BD and to Mr Greer.

  2. Upthecreek
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 11:25 am | Permalink

    Done in quick time today. Favourite was 21a for great misleading. All other clues were Ok but I am sure weekend puzzles are made easy to boost income from entries, as mentioned yesterday.

    • Posted April 3, 2011 at 11:28 am | Permalink

      Yep – The smoothness of the surface on 21a had me confused for ages.

      • Upthecreek
        Posted April 3, 2011 at 11:32 am | Permalink

        It was my last in and a real pennydrop moment.

        • Posted April 3, 2011 at 11:35 am | Permalink


          • Hoddros
            Posted April 3, 2011 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

            Help, I still cannot get 21a. It is very frustrating.

            • gazza
              Posted April 3, 2011 at 1:06 pm | Permalink

              21a Functions to promote business in bars (8)
              Functions to promote business (2,6) is one definition. The other is a verb meaning bars or precludes.

              • Nora
                Posted April 3, 2011 at 3:09 pm | Permalink

                Thanks for the hint. Everybody was saying ´what a great clue´and I was feeling a numbskull.

                • gnomethang
                  Posted April 3, 2011 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

                  Nora, don’t be disheartened or feel like a numbskull. It was last in for me, UTC and probably crypticsue and it was tough because it was a really good surface reading that disguised the answer.

                • crypticsue
                  Posted April 3, 2011 at 4:08 pm | Permalink

                  Nora – it was the last one in for me too and it took ages for the penny to drop. Despite what a lot of people are saying, I did think this crossword was at the hard end of the Virgilius spectrum.

                  • Libellule
                    Posted April 3, 2011 at 5:25 pm | Permalink


                  • Kath
                    Posted April 3, 2011 at 9:39 pm | Permalink

                    I am still finding it absolutely impossible – will carry on reading through the comments hoping to find a bit more help ..

                    • Patsyann
                      Posted April 3, 2011 at 10:18 pm | Permalink

                      Kath – think of the first 2 letters as something we are being asked to vote on soon, then a word for functions (noun, not verb) and the whole word is to stop, or bar.

                    • Posted April 3, 2011 at 10:46 pm | Permalink

                      Patsyann – please confine your hints to interpretation of the clue. The first two letters are an abbreviation, not for a voting system but for business promotion.

  3. crypticsue
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 11:41 am | Permalink

    D’oh to 21a! Unlike UTC, I found this really difficult and it’s taken me the longest time to solve. For that reason, I didn’t really enjoy it, but will see if I change my mind when I sort out the review later on today. Thanks to Virgilius and BD. Off for a little lie down now to recharge the cryptic cells.

    • Upthecreek
      Posted April 3, 2011 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

      Its funny how sometimes things fall into place and other times they don’t. I am still racking my brain on Friday’s Toughie!

      • crypticsue
        Posted April 3, 2011 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

        Just had a quick look through the wordplay pre-review and it’s growing on me!

  4. Mr Tub
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

    Lots of lovely clues to enjoy today: 17d possibly my favourite. Or 22d, which was my last one in. It often happens that the one I work hardest for is the one I end liking most. 22a was a new word to me, and all those GCSEs and A levels and degrees finally came in useful for 26a (I did English Lit which is why I have a made up job). I was half expecting a Mothers’ Day theme but didn’t really mind not having one. Health, happiness and Happy Mothers’ Day to all.

  5. Tantalus
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

    We can still not see 9a – help anyone?

  6. Tantalus
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

    On 9a, Mrs T says it ends in T (but surely M).

    • crypticsue
      Posted April 3, 2011 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

      Mrs T is right. There isn’t an M in the anagram fodder and it wouldn’t work with 8d.

    • Posted April 3, 2011 at 12:25 pm | Permalink

      The person who does the M’s ends in the T.

  7. Prolixic
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

    Cracking crossword from Virgilius. Solving started slowly and then the grid was filled jigsaw like as the pieces slowly fell into place. Some excellent clues like 9a and 21a.

    Thanks to Virgilius for the crossword and to BD for the hints.

  8. mary
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

    well I have just looked at this and after looking a t the comments decided to start with 9a, now come on! even if it is a really clever clue who has ever heard of one of them? please life is difficult enough as it is :)

  9. Jezza
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

    A battle for me today – I tried to do this in the garden with a pre-lunch tipple, a screaming infant, and a hyperactive 5-year old.
    That aside… most enjoyable; thanks to Virgilius, and to BD.
    Happy Mothers Day to all the mums out there! :)

    • mary
      Posted April 3, 2011 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

      Thanks for the good wishes Jezza, my lot don’t arrive til this evening but I am trying to do this in the office, with the kitchen floor being mercilessly drilled nearby to lay new pipes to the bathroom! Happy Mothers Day indeed, I think I will pack up the crossword and my Kindle and head to the beach with them, I am finding this really tough today without all the noise :)

      • Jezza
        Posted April 3, 2011 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

        Hope the day improves for you Mary. Mrs J and I are off to a nice quiet Italian this evening without the Rugrats :)
        What’s more, the family has just decided to go shopping this afternoon, and so I have a few hours peace and quiet. Bliss!!

        • crypticsue
          Posted April 3, 2011 at 1:55 pm | Permalink

          Shouldn’t you be taking the offspring shopping and leaving Mrs J in peace and bliss?

          • Jezza
            Posted April 3, 2011 at 4:06 pm | Permalink

            Shopping is Mrs J’s idea of bliss :)

  10. lizwhiz1
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

    Really struggling … have done all but 21a and 22d Can you help!!

    • lizwhiz1
      Posted April 3, 2011 at 1:31 pm | Permalink

      Cracked it!!!!!!

  11. David R
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 1:31 pm | Permalink

    Like some I found this difficult. Favourite 21a when I eventually twigged.

    Least favourite 27a, can anyone explain why ‘playing’ is in the clue for other than for misdirection/surface?

    • lizwhiz1
      Posted April 3, 2011 at 1:43 pm | Permalink

      I don’t understand that clue really… but there again I didn’t understand the wordplay of a lot of them!

    • Posted April 3, 2011 at 1:45 pm | Permalink

      “Playing” provides the aecond and third letters of the answer.

      • David R
        Posted April 3, 2011 at 2:15 pm | Permalink

        Thanks I get it now. I mistakenly thought that clad defined the second and third letters.

  12. Addicted
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

    Oh boy, that was a struggle – didn’t help that I had “cotton” for 15a which I thought was a great answer and referred to the old band leader Billy!! Had to finally convince myself of 12d before I actually saw 15a in the clue – doh! Have only just justified 17d even though I put it in – never heard of 9a (thanks for hints BD) and resorted to Chambers for 26a. Can’t fully explain 13a either – perhaps someone can spell it out for me?

    • crypticsue
      Posted April 3, 2011 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

      Turned round tells you that its a reversal of all the separate parts of the clue. Work them out in the order they are in the clue and then reverse them.

    • Posted April 3, 2011 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

      13a – T (first of two) + vehicles + “I had” abbreviated – all reversed.

      • Addicted
        Posted April 3, 2011 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

        Thank you! It was another “couldn’t see what was staring me in the face” moment – perhaps I should go to Specsavers??

  13. Geoff
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

    Half a dozen gaps, but I’ll ponder a while longer .. and see if someone else asks my questions first!

    • crypticsue
      Posted April 3, 2011 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

      Did they ‘teach’ you that approach at the course? :)

      • Geoff
        Posted April 3, 2011 at 4:02 pm | Permalink

        No CS, I learned that here! Doesn’t always work, alas.

  14. Kath
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

    Am REALLY struggling today – have only managed about six clues and needed the hints for about half of them!! Rather feel like giving up – perhaps another hour or two in the garden and then another look to see if it’s worth perservating any more. Maybe back later so please don’t all go away – will almost certainly need help!!

    • Upthecreek
      Posted April 3, 2011 at 5:56 pm | Permalink

      Keep going Kath. I assure you its well worth the effort. Could do with a hoover for all these pennies!

  15. Geoff
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

    The pondering has helped, down to just one now, the dreaded 21a! I have a small choice of words that fit and none seem to fit any part of the clue. Will come back later.

    • Geoff
      Posted April 3, 2011 at 5:08 pm | Permalink

      Hooray, the penny has dropped at last!

  16. Derek
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 6:12 pm | Permalink

    More good Sunday fare from Virgilius! A shade harder than usual this time.
    9a, 11a, 21a, 3d, 12d & 24d were best for me.

  17. Don1991
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 8:04 pm | Permalink

    This was a real struggle. I had 9a ending in M like a previous poster. That one now sorted out. Cannot see 21a for the life of me and consequently can’t get 22d. Just those two left. Can anyone help with some lovely lovely hints please? Mind you, I’m not convinced I’ve got 14d correct which is causing havoc. Help!!!!!

    • gazza
      Posted April 3, 2011 at 8:20 pm | Permalink

      22d Anger raised about team’s performance-enhancing medication (6)
      Reverse (raised) a verb meaning to make someone annoyed (anger) and inside this put the number in a football or cricket team (in Roman numerals).

    • gazza
      Posted April 3, 2011 at 8:27 pm | Permalink

      14d A club that can win if player’s heartless, say? Blast (5)
      If one of your opponents leads a heart and you haven’t got any (i.e. you’re heartless) and play a club and that wins the trick, what does that make the club?

      • Don1991
        Posted April 3, 2011 at 8:36 pm | Permalink

        Thanks Gazza, got 14d correct. Still stumped on the 21a/22d axis. Regardless of your previous clue still can’t get 22d!

        • Don1991
          Posted April 3, 2011 at 8:48 pm | Permalink

          Ok, now got 22d. Doh. I’m still concerned about 21a. I have an answer but can’t make it work with the clue. A last hint, please!!!!

          • gazza
            Posted April 3, 2011 at 8:55 pm | Permalink

            21a is a verb meaning bars, hinders, thwarts, makes impossible.

        • gazza
          Posted April 3, 2011 at 8:51 pm | Permalink

          For 21a I can’t do much better than my hint at comment #2 above.
          In 22d the performance-enhancing medication (the definition) is a preparation once supposed to have the power to invigorate or prolong life.

          • Don1991
            Posted April 3, 2011 at 9:03 pm | Permalink

            Thanks again Gazza. I have now figured out why it’s the answer. I appreciate your help and patience. All done now. Fave was 16d which I thought was v. clever.



  18. Kath
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 9:58 pm | Permalink

    Totally sunk – REALLY can’t do this one even with all the helpful stuff in all the comments – I don’t remember when I last gave in with so many gaps! I’ve done most (but not by any means all) of the top half and it would be easier to say what I HAVE done in the bottom half than what I have not. Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear!! Can’t even explain some of the very few that I have an answer for. I admit defeat and am now retiring to bed to sulk – can’t even go to sleep yet as husband is on call tonight and still in the hospital so might as well stay awake until he gets home. Grump, grump, grump ….
    In spite of all the above moans, thanks to Virgilius, to Big Dave, and to all the people who have commented today – am so glad that I’m not the only one who thought that this was quite tricky.

    • Don1991
      Posted April 3, 2011 at 10:20 pm | Permalink

      Dear Kath,
      Quite! T’was a pig. But, Nil Desperandum. I spent a disproportionate amount of time on this and only help from Gazza helped me finish. However, take solace in the fact that I used to find every Sunday like this. :-)

      • Kath
        Posted April 3, 2011 at 10:46 pm | Permalink

        You’re quite right – I also used to find all the Sunday crosswords completely impossible. I’ve learnt SO much from this great blog that I can now quite often finish them – but NOT today! Thanks for the sympathy/encouragement.

  19. pommers
    Posted April 3, 2011 at 10:40 pm | Permalink

    What a great crossword! Tricky or what? Took 2 glasses of the pre-prandials today and I still had to look up to confirm 9a when we came home! Heard of the ‘ism’ but never thought of the ‘ist’, doh!
    Strange how people’s minds work though – 21a across seems to have caused problems for some but pommette got it instantly, and then I took a while to work out where the answer came from! I’m supposed to be a blogger?
    Thanks for the usual Sunday fun to Virgilius and to Dave for the hints.