Toughie 739 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 739

Toughie No 739 by Shamus

Bangers and Mash

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

This Toughie from Shamus involves a lot of Tilsit’s wordsums making it a little difficult to get into, but once the grid started to fill, it became a lot easier. Parsing 1 down caused me a bit of grief, but I think I’ve got it right.

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1a    Smear bishop and associate in retired community in Cornwall (6)
{BEDAUB} – this verb meaning to smear is derived from B(ishop) followed by A(ssociate) inside the reversal (retired) of a small seaside resort town (community) in North Cornwall

4a    Archdeacon to be present on reflection ignoring nationalist feud (8)
{VENDETTA} – the abbreviation of the honorific prefix to the name of an archdeacon is followed by the reversal (on reflection) of a verb meaning to be present without (ignoring) N(ationalist) to get a feud

8a    Count stored furniture that’s new for lecturer (6)
{NUMBER} – to get this verb meaning to count or enumerate start with some furniture stored away out of use and put a N(ew) in place of the initial L(ecturer) – it’s nice to see the direction of the exchange being clearly defined

9a    Sailor disregarding cold plunged into river beside a capital (8)
{DJAKARTA} – put a four-letter word for a sailor, without (disregarding) C(old) inside (plunged into) a river in Devon and finally add the A from the clue to get an alternative spelling of the capital of Indonesia

10a    Book of words showing quality about to be put out with extraordinary backing (8)
{LIBRETTO} – a book containing the words for an opera or other long vocal work is derived from the quality of someone’s character without (to be put out) the two-letter abbreviation of the Latin for about followed by the reversal (backing) of an abbreviated adjective meaning extraordinary

11a    Sign of rejection for marks in theatrical ceremonial covering (6)
{CANOPY} – put a sign of rejection (2) in place of the M(arks) in an adjective meaning theatrical to get a ceremonial covering

12a    Website with denuded appearance for temporary convenience? (8)
{PORTALOO} – start with an Internet website providing access to other sites and then add a four-letter word for appearance without the outside letters (denuded) to get a temporary convenience for Ladies and Gents

ARVE Error: need id and provider

13a    Trouble labourer recalled nuclear plant (6)
{DAHLIA} – reverse (recalled) a verb meaning to trouble and a manual labourer, drop (getting rid of) the N(uclear) and the result is a plant of the daisy family, which is cultivated for its brightly coloured single or double flowers.

15a    Major’s wife close to regimental standard (6)
{NORMAL} – the first name of the wife of former Prime Minister John Major is followed by the final letter of (close to) regimentaL to get an adjective meaning standard

18a    Quiet female group in part of Scotland — not for her? (8)
{FISHWIFE} – put the exhortation to keep quiet and the group of jam-making women inside a part of Scotland to get a derogatory term for a woman who is decidedly not quiet!

20a    Translator tackling epic writer, not hard, from East getting thrill (6)
{TREMOR} – start with the abbreviation of T(ranslato)R and then insert (tackling) a Greek epic writer reversed (from East in an across clue) and without his initial H(ard) to get a thrill

21a    Who’s batting after cricketer that’s bowled out in an exhibition for tourists? (8)
{ROADSHOW} – put an anagram (batting) of WHO’S after an England cricketer (father or son) without (out) his initial B(bowled) to get an exhibition for (or by) tourists

23a    Work around restrictive space facing short narrow road — like some offices? (4-4)
{OPEN-PLAN} – put the abbreviation of a musical work around a restrictive space and follow it with most of (short) a narrow country road to get the design of some offices

24a    Decent blossom without sun (6)
{PROPER} – this adjective meaning decent is derived from a verb meaning to blossom or succeed without the S(un)

25a    Some mutterings I detected involving nearby seat? (8)
{RINGSIDE} – hidden inside the clue (some) is a seat near the action at a boxing match or circus

26a    A trial possibly to get rope (6)
{LARIAT} – an anagram (possibly) of A TRIAL gives a rope


1d    Common saint in a cycle (5)
{BANAL} – to get this adjective meaning common or mundane start with the name of the first British Christian martyr, who was later canonized, and “cycle” the first two letters to the end

2d    A rascal initially tore wildly into worthless place for elders? (9)
{ARBORETUM} – start with A from the clue and the initial letter of Rascal and follow it with an anagram (wildly) of TORE inside an adjective meaning worthless to get a place for elders, and other trees

3d    Endless drill requiring muscles backed in old site of detention (7)
{BORSTAL} – start with most of a verb meaning to drill, for oil perhaps, and then reverse (backed) some muscles in the lower part of the back to get old site of detention for juvenile delinquents

4d    Misplaced over-confidence before start of exhilarating modern discussion? (15)
{VIDEOCONFERENCE} – put an anagram (misplaced) of OVER-CONFIDENCE in front of the initial letter (start) of Exhilarating to get a modern way of holding a discussion

5d    Subtle and revolutionary study about unionist attracting African politicians (7)
{NUANCED} – to get this adjective meaning subtle or delicate reverse (revolutionary) a study or studio around U(nionist) and a South African political party

6d    Reportedly, an expression associated with valuable stuff producing disturbance (7)
{TURMOIL} – what sounds like (reportedly) an expression is followed by some valuable fossil fuel to get a disturbance

7d    Natty area to be demolished whatever happens (2,3,4)
{AT ANY RATE} – an anagram (to be demolished) of NATTY AREA gives a phrase meaning whatever happens

12d    Greek character, a failure, consuming bit of tonic with a lot of rage — and wine (5,4)
{PINOT NOIR} – start with a Greek character (2) and add a failure (2-2) around (consuming) the initial letter (bit) of Tonic and finally add most (a lot) of with another word for rage to get this wine

14d    Architect, predatory figure before accommodation got taken up (9)
{HAWKSMOOR} – this English architect, who became a clerk to Sir Christopher Wren and subsequently worked with Vanbrugh at Castle Howard and Blenheim Palace, is derived from a predatory bird followed by some accommodation reversed (got taken up in a down clue)

16d    What eight might do reportedly facing academic authority in school (7)
{ROEDEAN} – a homophone (reportedly) of what a crew of eight might do in a boat race is followed by someone with academic authority to get this famous school for young ladies

17d    Lover of rock and roll dancing around back of discotheque that is getting a lift (7)
{LORELEI} – a rock on the bank of the Rhine, held by legend to be the home of a siren whose song lures boatmen to destruction, is derived from an anagram (dancing) of ROLL around the final letter (back) of discothequE followed by the abbreviation of the Latin for that is reversed (getting a lift in a down clue)

19d    Piano in musical exercise close to stall — a theatre accessory? (7)
{SCALPEL} – put P(iano) inside a musical exercise and then add the final letter (close) to stalL to get an accessory used in a hospital theatre

22d    Banger from Western city of old put on road (5)
{WURST} – this German banger or sausage is a charade of W(estern), Crosswordland’s favourite city of old and an abbreviated urban road

A tougher start to the week than we have come to expect.

9 comments on “Toughie 739

  1. Thanks to Shamus for a very enjoyable toughie, I found this quite sticky in places and needed your assistance with 1d so thanks for the hints Dave.

  2. Good start to Toughie week S/E put up the most resistance, favourites 12a 18a and 21a thanks to Shamus and to Big Dave for the comments.

  3. I enjoyed this one, perfect toughness for the start of the week (or was that because I was still in recovery from the back page?) The LH corner held me up the longest. 1d I thought ‘in a cycle’ was an anagram indicator – it just took me a while to work out which saint I was cycling!

    Thanks to Shamus for a nice start to the Toughie week and to BD for the explanations.

  4. I thoroughly enjoyed this one too. Pitched perfectly, a few clues on the easy side helped me to get going and the rest were a very agreeable challenge. I’d love to see more like these. Thanks to Shamus and BD.

  5. Not much more to add really, 1d went in quite quickly but I’m glad I wasn’t blogging it! 21a fave, thanks BD and Shamus

  6. If it hadn’t been for my striping terrors, caused by an over indulgence in 12d, then I would have completed this.Thanks to Shamus and to BD for putting me out of my misery.

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