Toughie 597 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

Toughie 597

Toughie No 597 by MynoT

Where’s the pot of gold?

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

With this puzzle MynoT reaches the end of the rainbow. It has as its theme the final two colours of the rainbow with several answers being appropriately coloured. I started very quickly and thought I was on target for a very quick solve but I did then slow down a little. Even so I found it to be at the easier end of the Toughie spectrum.

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    Character among a former group of clergy (11)
{CARDINALATE} A character (eccentric person) + among + A + former (deceased or out of office) gives a collection of church dignitaries

9a    Vegetable popular in French tavern (9)
{AUBERGINE} A vegetable of an appropriate colour is formed from “popular” inside a French tavern

10a    Viola criticises end of symphony (5)
{PANSY} A viola (flower) is formed from “criticises” + Y (last letter of symphony)

11a    Old architect holding dead plant (6)
{INDIGO} The first name of an English architect (1573-1652) goes round D (dead) to give a plant from which an appropriately coloured dye is extracted

12a    Colder or hotter? (8)
{CHILLIER} A word meaning “colder” might be considered to also mean “hotter” as applied to foods containing a certain ingredient

13a    With comfort as one going into city (6)
{EASILY} “With comfort” is formed from AS I inside a cathedral city in Cambridgeshire

15a    Cardiac failure and bad stye also (8)
{ASYSTOLE} The inability of the heart to pump out blood is an anagram (bad) of STYE ALSO

18a    Emigrate from Indian state on minor thoroughfare (2,6)
{GO ABROAD} “To emigrate” comes from a state in India (a former Portuguese colony) + a numbered local thoroughfare, which usually has a lower traffic density than a main trunk road

19a    And French instrument at first could be wild or sweet (6)
{VIOLET} The French word for “and” is preceded by a stringed instrument to give a flower of an appropriate colour that has wild and sweet varieties

21a    More stingy? (8)
{NETTLIER} Think of stingy as sting-y, i.e. more likely to sting

23a    Bird of passage making noise about note (6)
{ROAMER} A bird of passage (in the sense of a transient visitor) is formed from a loud noise round the third note of the scale

26a    I cut the highest card so that’s perfect (5)
{IDEAL} Before a game of cards the players might cut to see who gets the highest card. This person then distributes the cards so the game can go ahead. If I perform this function then that’s perfect

27a    Cakes for groups of MPs on camera (9)
{DOUGHNUTS} It was obvious from the checking letters which cakes are the answer. But the rest of the clue fooled me until I checked the dictionary and discovered that the word also means “surrounds (a speaker) during the televising of Parliament to give the impression that the chamber is crowded or the speaker is well-supported”

28a    If political, it’s usually right for the left (11)
{CORRECTNESS} A cryptic definition. The answer is a word that can follow “political”


1d    Cup of tea with nits (7)
{CHALICE} A cup is given by tea + nits

2d    Fanatical artist’s offer (5)
{RABID} “Fanatical” = artist + offer

3d    Irish engineers carry back Arab insurgent (9)
{IRREGULAR} An abbreviation of “Irish” + The Royal Engineers” + a reversal of a word meaning “to carry” + an abbreviation of “Arab” gives an insurgent

4d    Dye second piece of tapestry for nothing (4)
{ANIL} A dye of an appropriate colour is formed from A (second letter of tapestry) + nothing

5d    Stone one with morphine substitute unknown on street (8)
{AMETHYST} A precious stone of an appropriate colour is formed from A (one) + a morphine substitute used in the treatment of addiction + an unknown + street

6d    Remove from school former pupil after sports (5)
{EXPEL} “Remove from school” = former + L (learner = pupil) after sports (physical exercise)

7d    Laurel’s always wearing fresh beret (3,4)
{BAY TREE} The laurel is given by “always” inside an anagram (fresh) of BERET

8d    Stabilising insect I turn over (4-4)
{ANTI-ROLL} “Stabilising” (as a crosswise bar on a motor vehicle) is obtained from a social insect + I + “turn over”

14d    Check fastenings for underwear (8)
{SCANTIES} “Check” + “fastenings” gives underwear, especially women’s brief panties. Gazza is welcome to add a picture if he wants

16d    Cast off Thora’s bizarre headgear (6,3)
{SAILOR HAT} “To cast off” (in a nautical sense) + an anagram (bizarre) of THORA gives a type of headgear

17d    Finish in seaweed plant with pleasant smell (8)
{LAVENDER} “Finish” goes inside an edible seaweed to give a pleasant smelling flower of an appropriate colour

18d    With 19 this is antiseptic manufactured by Scot after toff (7)
{GENTIAN} This is a plant with flowers of an appropriate colour. It goes before 19 across to give the name of an antiseptic. It is formed form a toff + a Scottish name

20d    At first he struts rudely about and pushes forward (7)
{THRUSTS} An anagram (rudely) of H (first letter of he) STRUTS gives “pushes forward”

22d    Tree I call new fig (5)
{LILAC} A tree with flowers of an appropriate colour is an anagram (new) of I CALL. I don’t really see where the “fig” comes into it unless it’s just being used as a synonym for “form” thus making it part of the anagram indicator

24d    Millions have to hold gold in the shade (5)
{MAUVE} M (millions) + an abbreviated form of “have” goes round the atomic symbol for gold to give an appropriate shade

25d    French flea gets wash? (4)
{PUCE} The French word for “flea” gives another appropriate shade (wash = layer of colour or thin coat of paint)

Having have now battled through the zodiac and through the rainbow, I look forward to seeing what MynoT comes up with next

10 comments on “Toughie 597

  1. Far from the hardest Toughie, but I did enjoy myself with the last of the rainbow theme. Lots of nice clues – re 22d – the figs in our garden are purple (well they will be when they are ripe). I knew the Parliamentary meaning of 27a as it was in a Gazza NTSPP. Thanks to MynoT for the very satisfying entertainment and to Bufo for the review. As Bufo says, I wonder what’s next.

  2. I echo everything Bufo wrote, including the quick start and slower progress later.

    Well done to MynoT for this series of puzzles. It’s been fun to follow, with today’s being the trickiest grid to fill, I would think.

    Thanks also to Bufo for the review.

  3. Nice crossword. Thanks to MynoT for the challenge and to Bufo for the review. It too recalled 27a from Gazza’s recent offering.

  4. Very entertainig series of the Rainbow theme todays certainly was fun favourite for me was 14d thanks to MynoT and to Bufo for his comments.

  5. 27a Having missed Gazzas’ NTSPP, I had decided that this was a triple definition: cakes, new collective noun for our esteemed representatives, and a device that I vaguely remember that you use to cushion a lens when reting it on something solid. I’m sure Bufo is correct but I prefer my version and will use the term from now on.

  6. I didnt know the setter as Telegraph puzzles was not updated. I also failed to notice the colours!!. It was only when CS mailed me that I realised what I had missed. A fine puzzle to complete the set so thanks to MynoT and to Bufo for the review. looking forward to guessing the next theme!

  7. Late, as usual, but I almost completed the toughie! So thanks to Bufo, I needed your hints to finish, and thanks to MynoT for a puzzle I could begin to understand and tackle. Favourite clue is 18a, love it!!

  8. I had a go, but was too difficult for me, I had to look up about half. Thanks to MynoT for the puzzle and to? For the hints. Favourite was 3d

  9. I had a go today – managed it all but a couple (23a and 24d) – OK, so it’s an easy toughie! Had a slight issue with 15a – as a cardiac trained nurse 15a is somewhat extreme “cardiac failure”!! It felt a bit like when the press says “…… and then had a heart attack and died” when, in actual fact, what happened was that the poor unfortunate had had a “cardiac arrest” – totally different! I will shut up now!! :smile: Sorry about the rant!! Needed lots of hints to explain the answers that I had – it’s all a learning process. Thanks to MynoT and Bufo.

Comments are closed.