Toughie 1004 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 1004

Toughie No 1004 by Warbler

Normal Service is Resumed

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment ***

After last week’s genuinely tough celebratory puzzle it’s back to Thursday normality this week with a very benign puzzle. Actually it’s a very pleasant puzzle with some nice clues but it caused me no problems whatsoever.

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    Famous person with share in a 10 (11)
{CELEBRATION} An abbreviated form of a famous person + a share

9a    When cooked American sour corn becomes bitter (9)
{RANCOROUS} An anagram (cooked) of A (American) SOUR CORN

10a    If I was employed in this do we get equal pay? (5)
{PARTY} This answer provides the definition in several other clues. If you put the letter I somewhere inside the answer you get a word meaning equality in status, especially in pay

11a    Musician in combo occasionally is living in the heart of Bootle (6)
{OBOIST} Alternate letters of cOmBo + IS inside the middle two letters of BoOTle

12a    Deviously a ploy involves principally underhand practices that flatter (4,2,2)
{PLAY UP TO) An anagram (deviously) of A PLOY round the first letters of Underhand Practices That

13a    Imagine going round old Irish 10 (6)
{SOIREE} ‘To imagine’ goes round O (old) IR (Irish)

15a    Film course in which last two characters swap places with king (4,4)
{STARTER} The first course of a meal with the last two letters transposed + K (king)

18a    Fluff scattered in most of barge causes a to-do (8)
{KEFUFFLE} An anagram (scattered) of FLUFF inside a barge (boat) with the last letter removed

19a    In the end man doused in booze. On this certainly! (6)
{BENDER} The last letters of maN douseD inside an alcoholic drink = a drunken spree

21a    European’s let slip, arrest lacking support by unknown spy (8)
{EMISSARY} E (European) + ‘let slip’ + AR (arrest – rest) + an unknown

23a    Nameless parvenu misbehaves in 10 (4-2)
{RAVE-UP} An anagram (misbehaves) of PARVEU, i.e. parvenu minus N (name)

26a    Paper’s no good back-to-front, dear (5)
{SUGAR} A reversal of a newspaper and an abbreviation meaning no good (or useless)

27a    Food obsessive mixed nori with touches of turmeric and ipecac (9)
{NUTRITION} An obsessive + an anagram (mixed) of NORI T I (where T and I are the first letters of turmeric and ipecac)

28a    Understand three got drunk, or 10 (3-8)
{GET-TOGETHER} ‘To understand) + an anagram 9drunk) of THREE GOT


1d    Scoundrel’s holding note to be paid for novel (7)
{CURIOUS} Scoundrel’s goes round a signed piece of paper acknowledging a debt

2d    Jargon used in selling objets d’art (5)
{LINGO} Hidden in selLING Objets d’art

3d    Half bohemian folks redesigned one of many in library (9)
{BOOKSHELF} An angarm (redesigned) of BOHE (half of Bohemian) FOLKS

4d    Australian cat. It’s very small (4)
{ATOM} A (Australian) + a male cat

5d    Latin island’s empty theatre cut off from communication (8)
{INSULATE} The Latin word for ‘island’ + TE (first and last letters of theatre)

6d    Frosty  old waitress (5)
{NIPPY} 2 meanings: frosty / a waitress in a Lyons teashop

7d    Ironic to get cut where craft’s made good (3,4)
{DRY DOCK} Ironic + ‘to cut’ = a place where ships are repaired

8d    Made ready prior to cut (8)
{PREPARED} A prefix meaning ‘prior to’ + ‘cut’

14d    To trespass in firing range with government artillery leaving, that’s wrong (8)
{INFRINGE} An anagram (wrong) of FIRIN NGE, i.e. firing range minus G (government) RA (artillery)

16d    Have another look at a burrow after cat swallows mole’s tail (2-7)
{RE-EXAMINE} A + ‘to burrow’ after a type of cat round E (last letter of mole)

17d    Music-maker‘s linear adjustment in court (8)
{CLARINET} An anagram (adjustment) of LINEAR in CT (court)

18d    10 joint has drink (5-2)
{KNEES-UP} A joint of the leg + ‘to drink’

20d    One worries about long retirement in the beginning (7)
{REPINER} ‘About’ + ‘to long’ + R (first letter of retirement)

22d    Rewards at last for good child (5)
{SPROG} S (last letter of rewards) + ‘for’ + G (good)

24d    Woman trapped by rising high tides (5)
{EDITH} Hidden in reverse in higH TIDEs

25d    Essential oil‘s excessive odour’s not grim (4)
{OTTO} An abbreviation meaning ‘excessive’ + O (odour – dour)

Maybe I’ll break sweat next week

17 comments on “Toughie 1004

  1. A toughie? – no; a most pleasant puzzle? – yes. 1*/4* for me today.
    Many thanks to Warbler for the smiles, and to Bufo for the review.

  2. Totally agree with the assessment given by Bufo, a thoroughly enjoyable crossword but perhaps a shade on the gentle side for a toughie, my thanks to Warbler and to Bufo.

  3. I knew it was going to be a 1* for difficulty, because I finished in good time with no hints. I don’t care…still doing a happy dance! Appreciate today’s setter for being kind, and Bufo for the review.

    But….the spelling of 18A. My Chambers 9th ed. definitely does not have that spelling. I assume the latest ed. does. I’m beginning to get a little ticked at these alternate spellings that are only in the latest Chambers edition. (harrumps off to get more coffee)

  4. Re 26 ac U for no good is a new one for me. Where does this come from? Otherwise no problems.
    Thanks to Warbler and Bufo.

  5. Well that was a toughie? Must admit I reverse engineered to get 10a not really sure it’s solvable as a stand alone clue. 18a nearly had me as I confidently entered an extraneous r before realising the word was too long.
    Thanks blogger and setter for a nice diversion from the lovely ignorant gits on the way glastonbury

    1. I did something similar – I worked out 23a, which gave me 10a. Also with 18a, I had to use correction fluid.

  6. Am unimpressed with the spelling for 18 across. Spoiled the crossword for me.

  7. I agree with the consensus that it wasn’t much harder than a typical back pager, Wasn’t keen on 18a either, but overall I am always happy to have solved a Toughie without any assistance.

  8. Gentle but enjoyable sums it up for us too. Suits us for a Thursday as one of us has both golf and Bridge to fit into the schedule as well.
    Thanks Warbler and BD.

  9. Very , very nice. Thought 13a was some misspelling of ceile for a long while. I love themed crosswords. Thanks Warbler and BD.

  10. May be 1* difficulty for you Bufo but I needed your help for 7d!
    10a is quite a clever clue once you realise that the definition is “this do”.
    And I was rather tickled by 26a.

    Many thanks to Warbler and Bufo.

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