Toughie 557 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 557

Toughie No 557 by Giovanni

Hints and tips by Bufo

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

This was a very pleasant puzzle from Giovanni. I didn’t find it too difficult although I did slow down in the north-east corner where 8 down was new to me and the wordplay at 6 across evaded me for a time.

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1a    Panelling in baby Rooney’s bed, from what we hear? (8)
{WAINSCOT} Wooden panelling on the lower part of an interior wall sounds like something Mr Rooney would have slept in as a baby

6a    Cost has to be pegged back if there’s discount (6)
{REBATE} A word meaning cost goes round BE reversed to give a discount

9a    What many a prisoner would like, eh? (6)
{PARDON} 2 meanings: what many a prisoner would like/eh!

10a    Nonsense by unorthodox believer who belongs to club? (8)
{ROTARIAN} Nonsense + someone who denies the divinity of Christ gives a member of a worldwide charitable society of businessmen and professional men

11a    Drink brings freedom with loss of hesitation (8)
{LIBATION} Remove ER (hesitation) from a word meaning freedom to get a facetious term for an alcoholic drink

12a    Foreign city journey — very good person will be around shortly (6)
{SAIGON} The former name of an Vietnamese city is derived from “to journey” inside a very good person with the last letter removed

13a    Mainstream religious house on holy island by lake (12)
{CONVENTIONAL} “Mainstream” is given by a religious house + a holy island off the coast of Scotland + L (lake)

16a    Eater to bring novel form of fruit (6,6)
{BITTER ORANGE} An anagram (novel) of EATER TO BRING gives a fruit used for making marmalade

19a    Design by leading pair of architects for flat (6)
{PLANAR} A design + AR (first two letters of architects) gives “flat”

21a    Point at band dancing (8)
{CAPERING} A cape (in a geographical sense) + a band gives “dancing”

23a    Accidentally see gross females you’d rather avoid (8)
{OGRESSES} An anagram (accidentally) of SEE GROSS gives ugly, cruel or bad-tempered women

24a    Officer from London on committee (3-3)
{NON-COM} This officer is hidden in LondoN ON COMmittee

25a    Dish with corn — time to tuck in (6)
{GRATIN} A dish with a golden-brown crust is formed from corn containing T (time)

26a    Journalist — person on phone at end of street? (8)
{STRINGER} A newspaper correspondent not on the regular staff is derived from a person on the phone coming after ST (street)


2d    Awkward moving about? A cab will have to get caught (6)
{ATAXIC} A word meaning “not having full control of bodily movements” is formed from A + cab + C (caught)

3d    Irish missionary upsets this Eastern European girl (5)
{NADIA} Reverse the name of an Irish saint who was a missionary in Northumbria and who founded the monastery at Lindisfarne. This gives a girl’s name derived from Russian

4d    One sending something to trick a gentleman of Verona? (9)
{CONSIGNOR} A person who sends something is formed from “to trick” + an Italian title equivalent to Mr

5d    Man starts to educate novices in an hour of devotion (7)
{TERENCE} A man’s name is formed from EN (the first letters of educate novices) inside one of the hours of the Divine Office, originally held at the third hour of the day (9 am)

6d    From what is said, many workers demand these observances (5)
{RITES} Religious observances are a homophone of what many workers demand

7d    Singer injected with British drug (9)
{BARBITONE} A male singer with a deep-toned voice goes round B (British) to give a sedative drug

8d    Pheasant in a pot gran cooked (8)
{TRAGOPAN} An anagram (cooked) of A POT GRAN gives a brilliantly-coloured Asian pheasant

13d    Can’t get on unfortunately with a concept in trigonometry (9)
{COTANGENT} An anagram (unfortunately) of CAN’T GET ON gives a trigonometrical function

14d    No writer should get involved in row — one may need to work before lunch! (3-6)
{TIN-OPENER} NO + writer goes inside a row (rank) to give a kitchen utensil that you might need when preparing lunch (especially if you’re having beans on toast)

15d    Quiet member of small community knocking out very violent robber? (8)
{PILLAGER} P (quiet) + a member of a small community with V (very) removed from the start gives a violent robber

17d    Gives a new part to fantastic actress (7)
{RECASTS} “Gives a new part to” is an anagram (fantastic) of ACTRESS

18d    Academic falling into clutches of a French female is ruined (6)
{UNDONE} An academic goes inside the feminine form of the French word for “a” to give ruined

20d    Solid stuff in Religious Education on ‘estrangement from God’ (5)
{RESIN} A solid polymeric compound comes from RE (Religious Education) + “an estrangement from God”

22d    Arrest creates altercation (3-2)
{RUN-IN} 2 meanings: arrest (3,2)/altercation (3-2)

The puzzle contained Giovanni’s usual sprinkling of religious references (but no cricket this time)

18 comments on “Toughie 557

  1. Not that difficult a toughie, I did have to check that the words I had in both 7 and 8d were correct but apart from that I found it all fairly straightforward. Thanks to Giovanni for the crossword and Bufo for the review.

  2. Very enjoyable and not overly tough toughie. Thanks Giovanni for the fun and Bufo for the hints.

  3. Had to look up the same two as Cryptic Sue and also 21a as have never heard anyone use the word. 1a made me laugh, he probably still sleeps in one when he’s throwing his toys out of it. Completely missed the wordplay in 12a though I had the answer. Many thanks to Giovanni and Bufo

  4. All good, nothing bad here. Thanks to Giovanni for the entertainment and Bufo for the review.

      1. 8d is one of those Crosswordland words that I know for the sole reason of the DT/Times. One for the memory banks in both Cryptic and GK.

  5. Needed a bit of Google to confirm 8d which I’d never heard of but otherwise a very accessible Toughie and a very good puzzle.
    I must have been on Giovanni’s wavelength today as I finished this one faster than the Rat back-pager!
    Many thanks to Giovanni and Bufo.

    1. I rarely look at the Toughie – bit beyond me on most days.
      Pommers, you should have asked me about 8d !!!! Am I the only person on here to have heard of this bird? I’ve come across it in the past. Don’t know why or where but it’s burried deep in the recesses of my brain never to be forgotten.

      1. Funnily enough, the bird was my first one in. The one that caused me a headscratch was 12a.
        Thanks to Giovanni, and to Bufo.

          1. I was convinced (for a long long time) that S and T were the first and last letters, but the only word I could find was SPIGOT. I came back an hour later, and the penny dropped straight away!
            With regard to your brain, if you don’t mind, i’ll hang onto it a little longer – I seem to do better at the puzzles :)

  6. Pleasant puzzle, with a few good grins. More back-page than Toughie difficulty, but fun nonetheless.

    Many thanks to Giovanni and Bufo.

  7. Thoroughly enjoyable puzzle today. :) Needed a nudge with 5d but the on line anagram solver found me a strange , new to me, pheasant. Thanks Giovanni and excellent help from Bufo. Not raining yet in the NE Mary.

  8. Rats! my train is nearly there!
    So I am now having to give up on this with four unsolved.
    Not a bad effort for me on my first Toughie (waits for applause…… nothing happens.)
    I liked 11a best…….. but then I always like an 11a. :-)

    1. Hello Lostboy
      You may have missed it but in reply to your ‘curses’ post on my blog yesterday I offered to email a PDF of Tuesday’s Toughie.
      Offer still open if you want it.
      It really is a fine puzzle from RayT/Beam.
      Just post on my blog and I’ll get the message.

      1. Thanks for the offer Pommers, but as I’ve only just finished Friday’s crossword at Saturday lunchtime, I’m never going to catch up anyway!

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