ST 2622 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

ST 2622

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2622

A full review by Gnomethang

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Afternoon All! We have another no frills but highly enjoyable Virgilius puzzle from last Sunday. Not so hard but a couple to make you think.

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           Bishop leading one religious group split down the middle (6)
BISECT – The Chess abbreviation for B(ishop) in front of (leading) I for One and SECT for a religious group. The definition is to split down the middle or in half.

4a           Revolutionary respects some of the trappings of monarchy (8)
SCEPTRES – The plural of the ceremonial staff of a queen. It is an anagram (revolutionary) of RESPECTS.

10a         Pressing need in small club without a lot of players (5,4)
STEAM IRON – To get the item that presses we need S(mall) and IRON (a golf club) outside of/without TEAM which is “a lot of players’.

11a         Annoyed reaction heard in summit, or just a short-term view? (5)
PIQUE – A BOGOF or two definitions for the price of one!. Annoyed reaction is a fit of PIQUE. The other two cryptic definitions are a homophone of PEAK/summit and PEEK/a short look.

12a         Junior hotel worker, yet getting a lot (7)
BUTTONS – A charade of BUT (yet) and TONS (a lot) is your slang term for a bell-hop or gopher in a hotel.

13a         Sinful, pocketing a piece of jewelry (7)
EARRING – ERRING (being sinful) including (pocketing) A from the clue gives a dangly item of jewelry.

14a         Book studied to make money (5)
BREAD – A charade of the abbreviation of B(ook) and READ (studied at University perhaps). The definition is (makes) a slang term for money

15a         Lacking experience, and prosaic? (8)
UNVERSED – Prose is any written word that is not in verse form. Hence prosaic can cryptically mean not in verse or unversed. Someone lacking experience in a subject is similarly unversed.

18a         Prop finally dropped before big match — least effective as line-out jumper? (8)
SHORTEST – SHOR(e) for prop with its final letter dropped followed by TEST (a big match in cricket say – Ten wickets!!) leads to SHORTEST which may be the least effective person jumping in a Rugby line-out unless his mates lift him up!

20a         Constable and another artist needed source of oil (5)
COPRA – COPRA is defined as ‘dried coconut kernels from which oil is extracted’. Take a COP (constable) and add another RA – Royal academician or artist)

23a         Accountant returned and caught employer who raises charges? (7)
ACCUSER – The surface reading makes this a great (and tricky) clue. The definition is “Who raises charges?”. The wordplay is CA (Chartered Accountant) reversed followed by C (Caught in cricket notation) and then USER (employer).

25a         Cook raving about Eastern condiment (7)
VINEGAR – A cooked anagram of RAVING around the outside (about) E for Eastern gives a condiment to put on your chips.

26a         Extremes of honesty coming in useful (5)
HANDY – A nice little clue (in the correct sense of the word!). The extreme (outside letters ) of HonestY are H AND Y, which is useful!

27a         No luck in unusually good opening (9)
UNLOCKING – to get a verb meaning opening make an anagram (unusually) of NO LUCK IN followed by G for Good.

28a         City official long ago trapped by crowd? Not him (8)
MAYORESS – Place YORE, long ago, inside a MASS (crowd) to get the FEMALE city official. The remainder of the clue details the fact that the said city official is not a male!

29a         Heads off for big gin, for a start (6)
ORIGIN – Another trademark Virgilius clue. You need to remove the first letters (heads off) from fOR bIG gIN to get a start or beginning.


1d           Primate holding former president dear (8)
BUSHBABY – I am not too sure about what ‘holding’ is doing here – can anyone help?. BUSH is the former president and BABY is a synonym for ‘Dear’. The definition is a cute primate.

2d           In this heat, helmet’s put back in case (7)
SHEATHE – A verb meaning to put back a sword or knife in its case is hidden in (IN!) thiS HEAT Helmet.

3d           Equipment for filming canoeist, initially, in river sequence (9)
CAMCORDER – This hand held filming device can be found by placing C(anoeist) initially inside the river CAM and ORDER for sequence.

5d           In line with right policies? Vice versa — only changing over time (14)
CONSERVATIVELY – A very satisfying clue to solve. ‘In line with right policies’ is CONSERVATIVELY in a political sense. It is also an anagram of VICE VERSA ONLY with T for time in the middle.

6d           It needs copy to fill page, right? (5)
PAPER – A lovely semi all in one. Place APE (copy) inside P for Page and R(ight). The whole clue gives the definition.

7d           Get revenge, having overturned monarch fairly (7)
REQUITE – Reverse ER )Elizabeth Regina, our monarch) then add QUITE for fairly. The definition is ‘get revenge’, quite the opposite of unrequited which is probably more common.

8d           Vehicle to bump off, as you can hear (6)
SLEIGH – A homophone of slay (to kill or bump off) is also a type of snow vehicle.

9d           Pursue progress with reform in these (8,6)
PRESSURE GROUPS – A lovely anagram (with reform) of PURSUE PROGRESS gives another semi &Lit where the whole sentence is the definition and aim for the said groups.

16d         Tracing carburettor part for vehicle often off the road (6,3)
RACING CAR – Another excellent hidden word. A RACING CAR is often off the road for servicing and it is hidden in the first two words.

17d         Temperature right in part of Spain for this herb (8)
TARRAGON – The herb can be found by placing R for right inside ARAGON (a part of Spain) all after T for Temperature.

19d         Artist making name in sport (7)
HOCKNEY – Place N inside the sport of HOCKEY to get David, the well known Artist

21d         Quietly urging action that’ll stabilise costs (7)
PEGGING – To PEG a cost is to fix or stabilize it. It is a charade of P (quietly/Piano in musical notation) and EGGING for urging.

22d         Understand female cutting party short (6)
FATHOM – F(emale) and a shortened, one letter off, from AT HOMe  which is a type of dinner party in the house.

24d         With less confidence in company, cast going on short English run (5)
SHYER – Descriptive of a shrinking violet. Put SHY (cast/throw) in front of E(nglish and R(un), again from cricket notation.

That’s all from me for this week; I’ll be back next week for another Sunday slot.


5 comments on “ST 2622

  1. Ten Wickets indeed. They should take their passports off them untill they start winning!
    The crossword was most enjoyable Thanks to Virgilius and Big Dave for the (needed) clues and Gnomethang for the review.
    My favourite clue was 9d It was elegant and opened up a number of the across clues. I spent a lot of time trying to get petitest to wrk for 18a.



  2. Good review gnomey.

    I took 16d to be a car often off the road due to it’s driver very often going far too fast and ending up in the gravel trap! However, you’re probably right in your analysis as the average racing car isn’t actually on the road very much, but that was my first thought when I solved it! Lovely hidden word clue – a Virgilius trademark methinks!

    1. My initial thought was that it meant a racing car was often off the public road and on a purpose-built racetrack. So many possibilities – take your pick!

      1. You could also say a racing car spends a lot of its time being hauled around on trailers or in lorries so, although travelling down the public highway, it’s actually ‘off the road’!

        As you say, too many possibilities to choose from!

    2. I did consider these but kept thinking about the TVR and the fact that it is off the road (needing maintenance) a lot. Depends on your type of racing car! since a Rally Car is on a public road but a Banger Racer is on a private road. As you say, take your pick!

Comments are closed.