ST 2621

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2621

A full review by Crypticsue

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

If all Virgilius’s 2012  Sunday Cryptics are going to be as good as the first two, Big Dave is going to have to add another page to the Mine: “Superlatives, Bloggers for the Use Of” as I think otherwise Gnomethang and I are going to become very repetitive.  Thank you to Virgilius once again for a crossword that was easy to solve, very entertaining and a pleasure to review.   My top favourites are highlighted in blue.

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.


7 Problem with vision producing fall (8)
CATARACT – a double definition – either an opaque condition of the lens of eye or a waterfall.

9 Russian author securing ring for many millions (6)
GOOGOL –  The number which is 1 followed by 100 zeros is obtained  by inserting an  O (ring) into the Russian author Nikolay GOGOL.

10 Resort in which completed film is set, we hear (6)
CANNES –  The French resort famous for its film festival sounds like cylindrical containers for storing film.

11 Page one I have shortened, imposing discipline (8)
PUNITIVE – Concerned with inflicting punishment or discipline – P (page) UNIT (one) IVE (I’ve shortened)

12 Cheeky youngster, one who flogs fish (14)
WHIPPERSNAPPER –  Originally this term applied to someone who had nothing else to do all day but snap a whip.   Nowadays it is used to refer to a cheeky young lad.  WHIPPER (one who flogs or whips) and SNAPPER (a type of fish).

15 Card, not red, for striker (4)
CLUB –  One of the black suits found in a pack of cards – CLUB is also the name of a heavy stick used as a weapon.

17 Influenced to such an extent, did some work at last (5)
SOLED –    This clue and 14d were the ones that held me and others up the most. Then I had a major penny-dropping moment with 14d which enabled me to solve this clue too.   SOLED (mended shoes at a cobbler’s last) if split 2,3 would mean SO LED or so influenced.

19 Hold back ace, put in joker (4)
WAIT –  To hold back in readiness – insert A (ace) into WIT (joker)

20 Fly endlessly in situation too good to be true (5-5,4)
NEVER-NEVER LAND –  If you never stopped flying, you would NEVER NEVER LAND.   Insert a hyphen between the two NEVERs and you have an imaginary place too fortunate to exist in reality

23 Error-free statement of agreement (3,5)
ALL RIGHT – Another double definition – without error or “‘all right’ I will do what you ask”.

25 Way of viewing power in a faction (6)
ASPECT – A particular way of viewing something is obtained by inserting P for power into A SECT (a faction or body of followers, especially of an extreme political movement.

27 Metalworker, one who makes lots of money illegally (6)
FORGER –  The third double definition –  someone who forges metal or someone who makes counterfeit bank notes.

28 Supporters in camp set about covering operation in hospital (3-5)
GUY-ROPES –  Ropes used to support  a tent –   Insert OP (operation) into RE (about, concerning) and then insert the result into the London hospital GUYS.


1 Facts, at short notice, presented the wrong way (4)
DATA – Facts from which other information may be inferred –AT (from the clue) plus AD (short notice or advertisement) presented the wrong way or reversed.

2 Some milk about to turn up as treat for kitten (6)
CATNIP –  To get the plant which is said to attract both kittens and cats, follow CA (circa or about)with a reversal of a PINT (of milk).     As Gazza quite rightly points out my original reading of this was correct.    PINTA (I too remember the adverts imploring us to Drinka Pinta Milk a Day) and C (about) all reversed.

3 In dominant position throughout ambassadorship? (4)
ATOP – Another d’oh moment – obvious solution but why?   The letters of AmbassadorshiP run from A to P – remove the spaces and you get an adverb meaning on the top or dominant.

4 Business listed in Copenhagen Danes located (6)
AGENDA –  Hidden (located) in CopenhAGEN DAnes is the programme of business to be discussed at a meeting.

5 Show up at organisation as unorthodox leader (8)
SOUTHPAW –  An anagram (organisation) of SHOW UP AT describes a boxer who might lead with his right hand rather than the usual left hand.

6 Closely study form, for a change (10)
CONVERSION –  To change from one condition, use or opinion –  CON (to study carefully) and VERSION (a particular form of something).

8 Serves the purpose, since covering all the main points, right? (7)
ANSWERS  – To give a satisfactory response to –  Insert into AS (since)  North, South, West and East (the main compass points) and R (right).

13 Some beer admiral put in the hold (4,6)
HALF NELSON –  The crossword setter’s favourite wrestling hold –  HALF (a pint of beer) and Admiral NELSON.

14 Do what you’re doing, as opposed to cutting fish (5)
SOLVE –  Double d’oh time!   What was I trying to do while I scratched my head?   SOLVE of course.   Insert V (versus, opposed to) into a SOLE (flatfish).

16 Malt liquor, including very mature drink (8)
BEVERAGE  Any liquid for drinking is obtained by inserting V (very) into BEER (liquor or drink made using among other ingredients, malt) and following this with AGE (mature).

18 Legislative body on a railway, concerned with fare intake (7)
DIETARY –  Relating to diet or the rules of diet (fare here meaning food):  DIET (parliament or legislative assembly) followed by A (from the clue) and RY (railway)

21 Doctor concealing anger when upset in this respect (6)
REGARD –  Respect meaning particular, reference or REGARD.   Into DR (doctor) insert (concealing)  RAGE (anger) and then reverse or upset the result.

22 Threaten to produce overflow in computer (6)
LAPTOP – If a liquid were to LAP (the) TOP of a container it might overflow.   A LAPTOP is of course a type of portable computer.

24 Part of Africa still ahead for traveller (4)
TOGO –  If you were to split the West African country of TOGO  2,2,  it might describe the rest of the journey still to be undertaken by a traveller.

26 Prepare to swallow cold chop (4)
CHEW –  You are always instructed to CHEW your food many times before swallowing –  C (cold) and HEW (cut with a chopping instrument such as an axe).

I am back to  two weeks on Saturday blog duty, leaving Gnomey the task of finding original superlatives to use in his blog of the next two Sunday puzzles.



  1. gazza
    Posted January 13, 2012 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to Virgilius for the usual excellence and to CS for the usual excellence.
    I have a query on 2d. I couldn’t make it work with pint for milk and I thought that “some milk” might be PINTA (as in the old advert: Drinka Pinta Milka Day) followed by C for about and all reversed.

    • crypticsue
      Posted January 13, 2012 at 12:26 pm | Permalink

      I still think of milk in pints and I did toy with PINTA with C but changed my mind during my last revision

    • Jezza
      Posted January 13, 2012 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

      Chambers gives ‘pinta’ as ‘(inf) a pint of milk’.

    • Posted January 13, 2012 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

      My hint on Sunday:

      “some milk that we used to be encouraged to drink every day”

      was intended to indicate “Drinka pinta milka day”!

      • crypticsue
        Posted January 13, 2012 at 5:16 pm | Permalink

        People usually get caught plagiarising but the first week I decide not to ‘borrow’ from BD’s hints…. !!