Toughie 765 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 765

Toughie No 765 by MynoT

One ‘ell of a puzzle

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

MynoT continues to work his way through the alphabet in this puzzle and has now reached the letter L. It was a fairly gentle solve with the four 13-letter anagrams and the presence of the L’s adding to the gentleness.

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1a    Men cycle in terribly harsh weather (10)
{INCLEMENCY} An anagram (terribly) of MEN CYCLE IN gives harsh weather

6a    Too much left in breadbasket (4)
{GLUT} A surfeit (too much) = L (left) inside breadbasket (stomach)

9a    Wild eagle consuming a bit of kitten making unintended escape (7)
{LEAKAGE} An anagram (wild) of EAGLE goes round A K (first letter of kitten) to give an unintended escape

10a    Disappointed with bad service and stuffing (3,4)
{LET DOWN} ‘Disappointed’ = a service at tennis which clips the net + stuffing (e.g. for pillows)

12a    Honourable milksops aren’t crooked (13)
{SPORTSMANLIKE} ‘Honourable’ is an anagram (crooked) of MILKSOP’S AREN’T

14a    Accountant’s regular but not acceptable as temporary employee (6)
{CASUAL} An abbreviation denoting an accountant + a word meaning ‘regular’ with a U (acceptable) omitted = a temporary employee

15a    During New Year festival, rent former partner’s TV news service (8)
{TELETEXT} The Vietnamese new year festival (when there was once an offensive) goes round ‘to rent’ and ‘former partner’ to give a TV news service

17a    Overlooks hurt leg and cold in nets (8)
{NEGLECTS} ‘Overlooks’ = an anagram (hurt) of LEG + C (cold) inside NETS

19a    Old king’s a dry one, facing the Italian (6)
{ATTILA} A king of the Huns = A + dry (not drinking alcohol) + I + an Italian word for ‘the’

22a    Sundry allies consume fluid (13)
{MISCELLANEOUS} ‘Sundry’ is an anagram (fluid) of ALLIES CONSUME

24a    One end of pedal missing from heavenly instrument (7)
{CELESTA} Remove I (one) and L (last letter of pedal) from ‘heavenly’ to give a keyboard instrument

25a    Let off sailor to work out (7)
{ABSOLVE} ‘To let off’ = an abbreviation denoting sailor + ‘to work out’

26a    Vegetable sounding like a pea? (4)
{LEEK} A homophone of this vegetable means ‘to pee’

27a    They weigh fencing equipment used by American gardens (10)
{STEELYARDS} Weighing machines = a literary term for a sword + the American term for gardens


1d    Run slowly using horse track, disregarding British habit (4)
{IDLE} ‘To run slowly (like an engine)’ = a path for people riding horses from which BR (British) and a synonym of habit have been removed

2d    Will’s sections being liberal in motives (7)
{CLAUSES} Sections of a will = L (liberal) in motives. I was disappointed that the answer wasn’t a Shakesperean word for sections

3d    Intricacy of astrolabe seen in disorder (13)
{ELABORATENESS} An anagram (in disorder) of ASTROLABE SEEN = intricacy

4d    Chooses wiring without leads to run in conduits (6)
{ELECTS} ‘Chooses’ = wiring from which RIC (first letters of Run In Conduits) has been removed

5d    Newspaper feature by journalist with poles of support (8)
{COLUMNED} A feature in a newspaper + ED (journalist) = ‘with poles of support’

7d    Hero-worship for returning number one is found among the French (7)
{LIONISE} ‘To hero-worship’ = a reversal of NO. I (number one) and IS inside a French word for ‘the’

8d    Peripheral brown flower on lake not new (10)
{TANGENTIAL} ‘Peripheral’ = brown + a flower missing a letter N (new) + L (lake)

11d    Loudest ninety broadcast in a partisan manner (13)
{TENDENTIOUSLY} An anagram (broadcast) of LOUDEST NINETY = ‘in a partisan manner’

13d    Thrifty Italian author with no unfinished book left (10)
{ECONOMICAL} ‘Thrifty’ = the surname of Umberto, the Italian author, + NO + an Old Testament book with the last letter removed + L (left)

16d    Stout holy man with a large imperfection (8)
{STALWART} ‘Stout’ = the usual abbreviation for a holy man + A + L (large) + an imperfection

18d    American soldier’s meeting that French girl in spirit of dance (7)
{GISELLE} The usual abbreviation for an American soldier + ‘S + ‘she’ in French = the title character in an opera whose ghost, after her premature death, protects her lover from the vengeance of a group of evil female spirits (Thanks to Wikipedia for that information)

20d    Narrow urinals smashed (7)
{INSULAR} ‘Narrow’ is an anagram (smashed) of URINALS

21d    Take inspiration at Greater Manchester village (6)
{INHALE} ‘To take inspiration (breathe)’ = IN + a village south-east of Altrincham in Greater Manchester

23d    This could enlarge short boys? (4)
{LENS} A piece of optical apparatus that can magnify things is the plural form of the diminutive form of a boy’s name

A reasonable though somewhat unexciting puzzle. Perhaps it’s time for MynoT to take a break from his journey through the alphabet.

13 comments on “Toughie 765

  1. 1* difficulty for me – don’t think I have seen such neat handwriting on a crossword grid for a long time – very simple once I realised what letter of the day was. Thanks to MynoT and Bufo too.

  2. I’m sure that this will not have been enough of a challenge for the really experienced people – I’ve finished it without any help so it can’t have been very tough. I enjoyed it and it is lovely to be able to do a toughie just occasionally – it really helps to get rid of a few of the “bees in my bonnet” that seem to put me in the wrong frame of mind to be able to do them. 6a and 23d took me the longest. With thanks to MynoT for boosting the confidence and to Bufo for the hints.

  3. There were a few to make me pause and a few more that were enjoyabe – all in all I liked it. Thanks to MynoT and Bufo

  4. A gentle one today – perhaps there will be a sting in the tail of Firefly tomorrow!
    Thanks to setter, and to Bufo.

  5. I know this off topic but the link to today’s back page blog seems to have gone missing.

    Is it me or has a minor gremlin struck?

    1. No, it’s still there!

      DT 26856

      Did you bookmark it before 7:50am? I changed the addresses of all posts to include day as well as month and year because none of the links on Google were working.

  6. I didn’t enjoy this one, too many anagrams and some poor clues, still, I couldn’t have made up a crossword so it is pretty cheeky of me to complain. thanks anyway to MynoT and bufo. Again off topic, why am I having to fill in my details before every post? am I doing something wrong?

    1. You’ve dropped the from your alias, so your comment had to be moderated. The new one is better!

  7. Good heavens – I’ve finished a Toughie – albeit yesterday’s and even though I did need a couple of hints. Still don’t understand 27a? But it seems from reading above that this one was relatively easy so perhaps I shouldn’t approach another one with too much confidence??

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