Toughie 701 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 701

Toughie No 701 by Warbler

Hints and tips by Bufo (in case anybody needs them)

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment ***

This was possibly the easiest Toughie I have ever solved. It was pleasant enough to do but is far below Toughie standard. It seems like yet another day where the back-page puzzle is the tougher of the two puzzles.

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    Dismiss British officer over stampede (5,3)
{BRUSH OFF} ‘To dismiss’ = B (British) + OFF (officer) round a stampede

5a    Provide support for youngster (4,2)
{PROP UP} ‘To provide support’ = ‘for’ + a youngster

9a    Fools, say, returned in anxious state (8)
{STRESSED} Reverse of what fools (e.g. gooseberry fools) are an example of to get ‘in anxious state’

10a    University price row causes outcry (6)
{UPROAR} U (University) + PR (price) + ‘to row (a boat)’ = outcry

11a    Exalted example of 16 if one’s written into document (7)
{DEIFIED} A 16 across meaning ‘exalted’ is mad up of IF I (one) inside a document

12a    After Brit in Perth’s return he starts to adopt decidedly messy hairstyle (7)
{MOPHEAD} Reverse an Australian word for a British person. Add HE + A D (first letters of adopt decidedly) to get a messy hairstyle

13a    Unusually my Dr chose to include separately a touch of potassium and iodine in injections (11)
{HYPODERMICS} An anagram (unusually) of MY DR CHOSE contains P (first letter of potassium) and I (iodine) to give injections

16a    And 26 could make two-way communications (11)
{PALINDROMES} An anagram (could make) of AND with the answer to 26 across gives something that can be read both ways

21a    American paints slithering snakes (7)
{TAIPANS} An anagram (slithering) of A (American) PAINTS gives large venomous Australian snakes

22a    Reversing order Perth is changed to county town (7)
{MORPETH} A reversal of the abbreviation for the Order of Merit + an anagram (is changed) of PERTH gives the county town of Northumberland

23a    Catch only some of incoherent rapping (6)
{ENTRAP} ‘To catch’ is hidden in incoherENT RAPping

24a    Supplementary material’s total close to acceptable mark (8)
{ADDENDUM} Supplementary material = ‘to sum’ + close + U (acceptable) + M (mark)

25a    Spoil run in the morning with grassy example of 16 (6)
{MARRAM} ‘To spoil’ + R (run) + AM (in the morning) gives a type of grass that is a 16 across

26a    Begs for end of quarrel midst broken promise (8)
{IMPLORES} ‘Begs’ = L (last letter of quarrel) inside an anagram (broken) of PROMISE


1d    Nearby is capital of Burundi’s eastern district (6)
{BESIDE} ‘Nearby’ = B (first letter of Burundi) + E (eastern) + district

2d    Peacekeepers’ dominance is said to relax constraints (6)
{UNREIN} This is the only one that I had to think about. UN (United Nations = peacekeepers) + a homophone of a word meaning dominance (of a monarch) = ‘to relax constraints’

3d    Intoxicant gets him almost sent initially to hospital (7)
{HASHISH} An intoxicant (cannabis resin) = ‘gets’ + the first letters of Him Almost Sent + H (hospital)

4d    Unfortunately Dutch profit less in racing and hunting for instance (5,6)
{FIELD SPORTS} An anagram (unfortunately) of D (Dutch) PROFIT LESS gives ‘racing and hunting for instance’

6d    Prepare eccentric cover again for example of 16 (7)
{REPAPER} An anagram (eccentric) of PREPARE gives a word meaning ‘to cover again’ which is a 16 across

7d    Quietly sharpen habitual response of spoken words (8)
{PHONETIC} P (quietly) + ‘to sharpen’ + a habitual response = ‘of spoken words’

8d    Eden ordered wavering side to support soldier (8)
{PARADISE} ‘Eden’ is an anagram (wavering) of SIDE coming after a soldier arriving from the air

12d    I should interrupt quartet of mothers, giving the first example of 16? (5,2,4)
{MADAM I’M ADAM} I goes between 2 words meaning mother and the same 2 words meaning mother to give what is said to be the first ever example of a 16 across (spoken by Adam in the Garden of Eden)

14d    Emu traps floated about against the current (8)
{UPSTREAM} An anagram (floated about) of EMU TRAPS gives ‘against the current’

15d    Confine 150 oiks (not a thousand) on terrace (8)
{CLOISTER} ‘To confine’ = CL (150) + OI(K)S (K = a thousand) + TER (terrace)

17d    When climbing a second time artist falls (7)
{NIAGARA} A reversal of ‘a second time’ + RA (artist) gives some well-known waterfalls

18d    It’s bizarre! Most of county has a hilly middle (7)
{SURREAL} ‘Bizarre’ = a county in southern England with the last letter missing + A L (middle letter of hilly)

19d    Lecturer with degree for a more colourful example of 16 (6)
{REDDER} Take a word for a lecturer and replace A by D (degree) to give a word meaning ‘more colourful’ which is a 16 across

20d    Irish chap has difficult problem getting up (6)
{SHAMUS} An Irish boy’s name = an anagram (difficult) of HAS + a reversal of a problem

Has anyone needed the blog today?

25 comments on “Toughie 701

  1. Very pleasant solving and certainly a relief after the brain-battering back page but I agree with Bufo that this is hardly a Toughie – possibly my quickest ever Toughie solving time too. Thanks to Warbler and Bufo.

    Presumably we are in for tough Toughie tomorrow as the level of difficulty seems to be running on alternate days this week, rather than progressing from easier to extremely tough as the week progresses.

  2. I thought this was quite cleverly put together, and I enjoyed it.
    Thanks to Warbler, and to Bufo.

    9a typo; answer needs reversing.

  3. Agree with everyone else but still enjoyed it, thanks to Warbler and to Bufo ( By the way the answer in the bracket for 9a is an anagram of the correct answer and is part of the clue )

  4. Dear Wrabler – why did you choose Potassium (chem symbol K) for your clue and not Phosphorus?

    Yours etc

    William Geddes

      1. I take it all back! Warbler only mentioned “a touch of Potassium” which indicates the first letter P not the chemical symbol K. Apologies to Warbler!

        1. Warbler doesn’t normally comment but I agree that ‘a touch of phosphorus’ would have made a lot more sense.

  5. Not a Toughie but still good fun. Able was I ere I saw 16a. We could put 2 letters in on several clues which made it very easy. Loved 18d though as it was last in and it gave me a real doh moment as I had been trying to fit ‘tor’ in.

        1. I have indeed. But in fairness I was continuing a theme onwards and in reply to Upthecreek’s “Able was I ere saw 16A”

  6. Did that in 90% of my time for the back pager, so not really a toughie, but enjoyable.

    Bufo – your explanation of 3d has too many A’s in it. I think you need most of HIM, and the first of SENT.

  7. Thanks to Warbler for the puzzle & Bufo for the review & hints. Nice puzzle, I do like 16a’s. Hooray my second ever unassisted Toughie, even if it was a one star!! Favourites 7 & 12 downs.

  8. An enjoyable puzzle as you’ve all said. I enjoy the range of difficulty in the Toughies.

  9. Well – have had a go and, as a complete novice at toughies, I thought it was tough enough – all to do with mind set (plus time of day and a couple of glasses of wine with supper which doesn’t help!) Have now filled in my gaps in the acrosses and will have another try with the downs tomorrow.
    So often in the toughies there is a clue that has to be solved before the rest of it makes sense. Today it was 16 and 26. All fine if you can spot what is going on but, if you can’t (and I couldn’t) you’re a bit stuffed (and I was!)
    I WILL learn to do these. With thanks to Warbler and to Bufo – you may have thought that no-one would need the hints today but here’s one who needed LOTS so :smile: to you.

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