ST 2653 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2653 (Hints)

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2653 (Hints)

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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Congratulations to Slartibartfast, the winner of our third Monthly Prize Puzzle.

As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, I will select a few of the more difficult clues and provide hints for them.

Don’t forget that you can give your assessment of the puzzle. Five stars if you thought it was great, one if you hated it, four, three or two if it was somewhere in between.

Could new readers please read the Welcome post before asking questions about the site.

Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”.  Definitions are underlined in the clues.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submission


1a           They can afford middle-of-the-road accident protection (7,7)
A cryptic definition of these raised sections in the centre of a road that separate lanes

12a         It’s good, say, to hold down sensation-mongers (6,5)
A charade of G(ood), a verb meaning to say and a verb meaning to hold or push down

14a         Attach atom, more or less, for a bit of a lark, say (6)
A charade of a verb meaning to attach or fasten and an electrically-charged particle formed by loss or gain of electrons by an atom gives a part of a lark or any other bird

19a         Looking slightly bruised, quite near the knuckle? (6)
The second definition is an adjective meaning quite near the knuckle or risqué

22a         Medical treatment for elders, for example? (4,7)
… these elders are not elderly people!

26a         Dangers in attempts to heal outside hospital (7)
A verb meaning attempts by a doctor to heal a patient around H(ospital)

27a         Something viewed by many here as what divides us from Europe (7,7)
This could describe what is viewed on television in this country


1d           Exercise using arms in which one repeatedly aims to improve (6,8)
A cryptic definition of repeatedly shooting a firearm at a target to improve one’s aim

2d           A large demand put on an American separated from others (7)
A charade of the A from the clue, L(arge), a verb meaning to demand and AN

5d           Directions on youngster’s examination from which height is determined (3,5)
A couple of compass directions is followed by a topical examination for youngster’s (1,5)

16d         Husband still superficially smooth? (8)
H(usband) followed by an adjective meaning still or without wind

21d         Language football team pronounced differently at first (6)
This language, when the first part is pronounced differently, is part of the name of a Scottish football team

25d         Bad state Chicago is in, in short (3)
The second definition is the shortened form of the US state where Chicago is situated

If you need further help then please ask and I will see what I can do.

As this is a Prize crossword, please don’t put whole or partial answers or alternative clues in your comment, else they may be censored!

Today it’s Happy Birthday to John Deacon (61) and Ginger Baker (73)
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ARVE Error: need id and provider

16 comments on “ST 2653 (Hints)

  1. Another enjoyable puzzle from Virgilius.

    Aside from the four fringe clues, I liked : 14a, 22a, 4d & 18d.

    Torrid still in NL!

  2. Yes – very enjoyable. I think the Sunday puzzles are more fun than the weekdays !

    Particularly liked 24a. Took a while to unravel 14a, but enjoyed the whole puzzle.

    Thank you Virgilius, and to BD for hints – although not needed today.

  3. Think I got the answer but 17a’s explanation is not jumping out to me! Otherwise nice puzzle today. 14a & 2d are my favorites.

    1. A foreign citizen is obtained by inserting the abbreviation for part of the United Kingdom into three different grammatical ‘articles’.

      1. Thanks,

        I worked that out, said it in my head, got the answer and thought I got it wrong! I even have friends from there and only saw the part of the UK when you wrote what I was thinking down. Must need a holiday!

  4. Not the trickiest Virgilius but as enjoyable as ever with some splendid d’oh moments as I worked out the wordplay. Thanks to Virgilius and BD too.

  5. Solved very quickly before the golf (HOT!)
    Thanks to Virgilius and to BD.
    Apres golf now!

  6. Thanks to Vigilius and to Big Dave for the hints. I wonder if this was on the easy side ? Because I raced through it, then got held up by 14a, which I eventually got. Favourites were 22a & 3d. As 12a once said, “Phew, what a scorcher !”

  7. Hot in Oxford too – off to brother and sister-in-law in Loire valley tomorrow – spoke to them this morning – it’s 41C on their terrace!
    Very nice crossword – I thought that it was a bit easier than usual, or I’m getting better at the Sunday puzzles – hope it’s the latter!
    I liked 11, 19 and 24a and 3, 4, 8 and 16d.
    I don’t understand the “Yes and no” bit of 6d – if there’s anyone out there who isn’t too hot to be bothered I’d love an explanation, please.
    With thanks to Virgilius and BD. See you all next week.

    1. 6d A part of circle that’s central? yes and no (3)

      The definition is a peripheral (not central) part of a circle, but it’s also A plus the central two letters.

      1. Blimey – that’s a bit clever – I would NEVER have worked that out for myself. Thanks Gazza.

  8. A pleasant, not too taxing, offering from Virgilius this week. One thing that puzzles us is that, although everyone is careful not to give answers away in comments for a prize puzzle, if we hover the cursor over any pictures in the hints, the answer (or at least the name of the picture containing the answer) appears on the screen.
    Thanks Virgilius and BD.

    1. I always insert a few gimmes for each puzzle. When it was suggested a while back that I should stop doing this the consensus was that I should continue!

      1. Thanks Big Dave. Sorry, must have missed your previous explanation of this. We do really appreciate having access to this blog. Keep up the good work.

  9. Sublime. Perfect fare for an afternoon in the garden with a few cold ones. Thanks to V and to BD .

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