ST 2607 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2607

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2607

A full review by Gnomethang

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Afternoon All!. Last week Crypticsue was bemoaning the fact that I seem to get the themed Virgilius puzzles. Despite the tantalising “HIDDEN SKETCH” running along the bottom I have been unable to find four Yorkshiremen, any dead parrots nor even a scrap of cheese. I hope I haven’t missed something whilst just presenting a review of another excellent puzzle from Brian Greer.

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           Visit taking in South American plant producing oil (6)
SESAME – An oil producing plant. Place the abbreviations for S(outh) and AM(erican) inside SEE (meaning visit).

4a           Change temperature to 500 in metals such as gold and silver (6)
MEDALS – Simple wordplay but it took me a while to spot it as I was looking for a synonym!. Replace T(emperature) with D (the Roman Numeral for 500) in METAL (from the clue!) to get gongs awarded for the top two places at the Olympics for example (the gold and silver positions).

8a           Party’s method seen in peripheral activity (8)
SIDESHOW – A charade of SIDES (party’s) and HOW (method) to get an activity that is not central to the main event.

10a         Losing his line would produce rage? (6)
ANGLER – A very subtle clue and an all in one. Removing L for Line from ANGLER would leave ANGER (rage)

11a         Final parts of the essay we had examined (4)
EYED – The last letters (final parts in) in thE essaY wE haD gives the verb for examined.

12a         Criminal’s illegal activity, or that of many (10)
CONSPIRACY – A clue that made me chuckle, particularly having missed the international Talk Like a Pirate Day last week. If you make a charade of CON’S PIRACY (criminal’s illegal activity) you get another illegal activity that involves more than one person (one of many).

13a         Foreboding – tense people gripped by it (12)
PRESENTIMENT – A feeling of foreboding or premonition. Start with the PRESENT temse and then place MEN (people) inside or gripped by IT.

16a         Heavy tool to move slowly  – hard, when in prison (12)
SLEDGEHAMMER – The prison here is the SLAMMER. Into this you need to add EDGE (move slowly) and H(ard) to get the wall-busting heavy tool.

20a         Misplaced trophies party put back in minister’s office (10)
PRIESTHOOD – A misplaced anagram of TROPHIES with DO (party) returned or’ put back’ afterwards. The result is the religious ministry of a priest.

21a         Quick movement of paintings across the Channel (4)
DART – In French ‘of paintings ‘ is D’Art (as in objets d’art). Without the apostrophe it also means a quick movement.

22a         German vehicle originally seen in Tyrol and Austria (6)
LANDAU – A lovely all in one clue (or &Lit). This horse-drawn carriage with a folding top is believed to have originated in Germany before becoming popular elsewhere (e.g. Tyrol and Austria). It is also neatly hidden in these words and the definition being the whole sentence makes this an &Lit.

23a         Like a hot spot in the news around end of summer (8)
TROPICAL – TOPICAL (in the news) around the last letter (end) of summeR gives a hot clime.

24a         How some answers may be found in clues, some of which I’d denoted  (6)
HIDDEN – More fun and games! The self referential answer is hidden in (some of ) whicH ID DENoted. You have to throw your hands up and admire Virgilius sometimes.

25a         Point to craft in artist’s early work (6)
SKETCH – The point is South, a point of the Compass. Add this to KETCH (boat) to get a preliminary work by an artist.


1d           Where boat is fitted out with small and stylish attachment to mast (8)
SHIPYARD – Chambers defines YARD as ‘A long beam on a mast for spreading square sails’. Add this to a charade of S(mall) and HIP (stylish) and you will find the place where the boat is built and fitted out.

2d           Dispatch expedition, with children seizing power (5)
SPEED – This is a three in one clue. The first two definitions are dispatch and expedition. The cryptic wordplay is P (Power) inside SEED (one’s children or progeny, a word from the bible).

3d           Indian doctor China maltreated (7)
MOHICAN – This American Indian can be found by taking MO (the abbreviation for Medical Officer, doctor) and adding an anagram (maltreated) of CHINA.

5d           Test learner in gym class, for instance (7)
EXAMPLE – The ‘for instance’ at the end is the definition for example. Start with EXAM for ‘test’ then place L for Learner inside PE (gym class, Physical Education).

6d           Set of steps – it’s between short US politician and our monarch (9)
ALGORITHM – US politician AL GORE comes up a lot in Crosswords, partially due to his green credentials. Remove his last letter (short) then add IT and HM (Her Majesty, our monarch). The result is a set of steps in a computer program or process that achieves a desired result.

7d           What’s said, parts of which can be found in overblown announcements (6)
SPEECH – I had the answer to this but it took me a while to see why. The first definition is ‘What’s said’. Also two parts of speech can be found in both oVERBlown and also anNOUNcements. Typical Virgilius word observation!.

9d           Successful with job application that’s put in at the end  of the course (7, 4)
WINNING POST – Two definitions here; What you are doing when successful at a job interview and also the indicator at the finishing line (end of course) in a horse race for example.

14d         Held up in pass – took legal action about it (9)
SUSPENDED – Held up in the air, perhaps. The wordplay is SPEND (for pass as in spend time) with SUED (took legal action) around the outside.

15d         Admonish ring-leader for interrupting a head (8)
REPROACH – Admonish, carpet or upbraid. Start with R(ing) and then add PRO(for) inside EACH (a head, as in £10 a head). The instruction to insert is ‘interrupting. Thanks to Jezza for spotting my mistake!
17d         Create interest in what men, women and children have in common – so English (7)
ENTHUSE – The common letters in men, women and children are EN. Add THUS (for so) and English for a word meaning ‘create interest’.

18d         One fish or another beheaded on pier (7)
HADDOCK – One fish is found by removing the head from CHAD (another fish) and adding DOCK (pier).

19d         Leap out of water and run into seaside area (6)
BREACH – A smooth surface reading here. The wordplay is R(cricket notation for Run) inside BEACH (a seaside area). A whale or submarine that clears the surface of the water when rising is said to have breached the water.

21d         Believer in higher power – that is, after I moved to centre (5)
DEIST – Start with ID EST, Latin for ‘That is’ and then move the I to the middle. This leaves you with a believer in God or another higher power.

Thanks to Virgilius for a cracking puzzle – I am always on &Lit alert when solving and reviewing his. I’ll see you next week for no doubt more of the same excellence.

8 comments on “ST 2607

  1. My favourite puzzle last week! Thanks to Virgilius, and to gnomethang for the review.
    Re 15d, I think it is R(ing) and PRO(for) inside EACH (a head, as in £10 a head).

    1. Thanks Jezza, you are quite right – that was how I parsed it whilst solving but I had other ideas whilst writing the downs last night with a pint in my hand! I’ll borrow your explanation!

  2. The best puzzle of the week! Thanks to gnomethang for the review.

    BTW, if in conversation with a fellow cruciverbalist, how does one pronounce “&Lit “?

  3. Only just got around to this one! Great puzzle indeed.
    Re 17d: Didn’t Virgilius use a similar trick today to get the THE out of Mother, Father and Brother?
    Thanks to Virgilius and gnomey.

      1. No, well done to you! I only spotted it because I’ve done both the puzzles today. With a week in-between them I would probably have missed it.

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