Toughie 683 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 683

Toughie No 683 by Messinae

Easy Solving

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Messinae entertains us today with a fairly easy but enjoyable puzzle.

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1a    Black dogs — they’re seen all over the world (3-7)
{JET-SETTERS} – a charade of a black variety of lignite and some dogs gives these people who travel widely and frequently for pleasure

6a    River following round German domain (4)
{ODER} – put R(iver) after O (round) and the German internet domain, then read this &Lit clue again to get this river of central Europe that forms the northern part of the border between Poland and Germany

9a    Plunders castles (5)
{ROOKS} – a double definition – plunders or cheats and castles in chess

10a    Nature worshipper has trousers finally taken by robbery (9)
{PANTHEIST} – this nature worshipper (strictly speaking one who worships all gods) is a charade of some trousers without the final S (finally taken) and a robbery, especially a particularly clever or spectacular theft

12a    Civil reserves brought out – one’s waited for this (6,7)
{SILVER SERVICE} – an anagram (brought out) of CIVIL RESERVES gives a method of serving food in restaurants in which the waiter uses a spoon and fork held in one hand to transfer food from the serving dish to the diners’ plates

14a    Heartless game breaking in to say prayers (8)
{EVENSONG} – drop the middle I (heartless) from the meat of a wild animal hunted for sport (game) and put it inside the Latin for say or for example to get this church service

15a    Ancient tax from charity fundraiser (6)
{GELDOF} – a tax paid by landholders to the crown in late Anglo-Saxon and Norman times is followed by a preposition meaning from to get the charity fundraiser associated with Band Aid and Live Aid

17a    Paints run in starting lines (6)
{OCHRES} – to get these paints manufactured from native pigments which are composed of fine clay and an iron oxide put R(un) inside the starting lines for games of darts

19a    Enticing one to take a personal problem in hand (8)
{LABOURER} – put someone who entices around A from the clue and a personal hygiene problem to get a hand or manual worker

21a    Mediaeval punishments — something to chew over by royal lackeys (7,6)
{DUCKING STOOLS} – these Mediaeval punishments are created by reversing (over) something to chew and following it with a royal and some lackeys

24a    Sectarian to move freely in Arab country (9)
{ORANGEMAN} – to get this Irish sectarian put a verb meaning to move about freely inside an Arab country

25a    Juliet’s after this land (5)
{INDIA} – … in the NATO phonetic alphabet

26a    It’s said to exercise sheep (4)
{EWES} – this word meaning to exercise sounds like some female sheep

27a    Those on bridge perhaps as the fleet is scuttled (5,5)
{FALSE TEETH} – these may be found on a dental bridge – they are an anagram (scuttled) of AS THE FLEET


1d    Method of rigging judging panel (4)
{JURY} – a double definition – a method of temporary rigging for a boat and a committee of adjudicators

2d    Little piggy that is following blows (7)
{TOOTSIE} – this little piggy is the kind that went to market! – put the Latin for that is after some blows on a horn

3d    Any Genesis lit up Radio 2’s output (4,9)
{EASY LISTENING} – an fairly obvious anagram of ANY GENESIS LIT gives a description of Radio 2’s output, but I’m not too keen on “up” as an anagram indicator

4d    Something fishy about political course — it’s almost worthless (8)
{TUPPENNY} – put a type of fish around a university course in politics to get a very cheap price (less than 1p in decimal currency!)

5d    Olympic symbol is resounding (5)
{RINGS} – a double definition – the Olympic symbol and a word meaning is resounding

7d    Dared to restrain one idolised (7)
{DEIFIED} – put a verb meaning dared or challenged around I (one) to get one meaning idolised

8d    Physicist’s tedious routine with woman’s car (10)
{RUTHERFORD} – this New Zealander is regarded as the founder of nuclear physics – you get him from a charade of a tedious routine, the femal possessive pronoun (woman’s) and a make of car

11d    Tho’ reptiles go writhing, he’ll study them (13)
{HERPETOLOGIST} – an anagram (writhing) of THO REPTILES GO gives someone who studies reptiles

13d    Who’ll get silver for holiday place? (6,4)
{SECOND HOME} – a double definition – a description of the winner of the silver medal and a house used mainly for holidays

16d    Unfortunate knights beheaded as battle was fought here (8)
{HASTINGS} – an anagram (unfortunate) of (K)NIGHTS without the initial letter (beheaded) and AS gives the site of a famous battle

18d    What replaced the acre? (7)
{HECTARE} – an anagram (replaced) of THE ACRE gives a metric unit of area, equivalent to about 2.471 acres

20d    Those left to live outside University (7)
{RESIDUE} – what is left behind is created by putting a verb meaning to live somewhere around (outside) U(niversity)

22d    School master gives poor mark (5)
{GAMMA} – a collective noun for a school of whales followed my a master’s degree gives a poor, or third grade, mark in an exam

23d    Two mums prepare potatoes (4)
{MASH} – combine mum (mother) with mum (quiet) to get a word meaning to prepare potatoes

ARVE Error: need id and provider

A very pleasant puzzle for a Tuesday.

11 comments on “Toughie 683

  1. I thought this was the perfect Toughie for a Tuesday – very enjoyable with lots of lovely d’oh moments, including, for me anyway, 15a. Thanks to Messinae for a nice start to the Toughie week and to BD for the nice illustrated explanations.

  2. Thanks to Messinae and to BD, a fun puzzle, not too difficult and very enjoyable, and an excellent review.

  3. Thoroughly enjoyable start to the Toughie week some lovely double definitions favourites were 15a 13d and 23d thanks to Messinae and to Big Dave for the comments.

  4. 27a and 2d were my favourites in a very entertaining and not too difficult (for me) puzzle. Thanks muchly to Messinae and to BD for the review.

  5. Not too difficult but very enjoyable. Rated all the clues except 15 which was last one in. Favourites were 2 8 10 and 13. On the whole a really good workout.

  6. Many thanks to Messinae for the crossword and to BD for the review. Lots of very enjoyable clues so hard to pick a favourite but all over far too quickly.

  7. Thanks to Messinae for the puzzle and to Big Dave for the review & super hints. I don’t venture into Toughieland very often, but was glad I did on this occasion. Felt that it was almost do-able, just needed 6 hints to finish. Favourites were 18d & 27a. The latter made me laugh, as I had an image of clockwork false teeth scuttling round the Conning Tower of a submerging submarine :-)

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