ST 2699 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2699 (Hints)

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2699 (Hints)

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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Don’t forget to have a go at our July Prize crossword.

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.

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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           Reverentially treated male joining bank or put on board (4-10)
A charade of the male pronoun, a bank or tier, OR and a verb meaning put goods on board a sea-going vessel

9a           Pieced together like information Government leader listed (7)
This verb meaning pieced together, for example information comes from a charade of the initial letter (leader) of Government and a verb meaning listed or inclined

12a         In charge on paper that’s economical with words (11)
The abbreviation of In Charge preceded by (on in an across clue) a newspaper familiar to all solvers of this crossword

15a         Centigrade conversion of actual temperature within Asian city (8)
C(entigrade) followed by an anagram (conversion) of ACTUAL into which T(emperature) has been inserted

17a         Set out in ship, I hear (8)
An anagram (out) of SET inside a large passenger ship

22a         Maker of current changes in schools one’s been expelled from earlier (11)
This device which changes, for example, alternating current into direct current is derived from a verb meaning schools or teaches without the I (one’s been expelled) followed by an adjective meaning earlier

27a         What many shun, more or less? (4-6,4)
Many people dislike the use of these, and although “more” and “less” are, strictly speaking, examples (along with “what”, “many” and “shun”), they are not the ones that are shunned!


1d           Excited over formal proposal — that’s clear for all to see (4-10)
An adjective meaning excited followed by a formal proposal

3d           Watered around popular flowers for bouquet experts (4-7)
A three-letter verb meaning watered around a two-letter word meaning popular and followed by some flowers

5d           Either piece of Crown Derby, for example (8)
A crown and a derby are both examples of this

8d           Engaged in timely theft? (14)
A verb meaning engaged in the action that is proverbially known as the thief of time

13d         What gives you potential to race clear? (11)
An anagram (what gives you potential) of TO RACE CLEAR

18d         Prepare for attack from traditionalist and Tory (5,2)
The second consecutive hidden-word clue!

21d         Significance of minutes grasped by one side on board (6)
M(inutes) inside (grasped by) I (one) and one of the sides of a ship

25d         Jack and ten, initially, then ace, king, or queen (3)
The initial letter of Ten followed by A(ce) and the Latin abbreviation for either king or queen

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 Jeremy Guscott (48), Bill Oddie (72) and Ringo Starr (73)
ARVE Error: need id and provider

34 comments on “ST 2699 (Hints)

  1. Splendiferous, just like the weather. A very ‘dotty’ day but I think my top fave (meriting two stars, as opposed to dots, for some strange reason) has to be 27a.

    Thanks to Virgilius and BD too.

  2. Good fun as usual. Many thanks Virgilius and to BD for your hints. What does an Englishman do this afternoon ? ! Sit in the garden in the sunshine, watch Lewis Hamilton win for England or watch Mr Happy win for Scotland – any advice ?

  3. Magic puzzle to solve on a lovely sunny day in Dover.

    Thanks to BD and of course to Virgilius.

  4. Took an age to actually get started but once I cracked 1a and several lower down, it all fell, eventually, into place.
    Very entertaining.
    Many thanks to Virgilius and to BD for the review.

  5. A slower than normal Sunday solve for me today. Perhaps mentally busy with the impending arrival of friends, for an afternoon of beer, wine, and food alfresco..
    Many thanks to Virgilius, and to BD.

  6. Oh dear a real struggle today, can’t even get 1a or 1 d with the hints, must be the heat!

    1. The underlining should probably be “reverentially treated male” since for some reason this expression only uses the male form of the noun. (any cake in the naughty corner? – In my defense, I have only reused used the words in the hint).

      1. There’s a delicious not-quite-set home-made strawberry cheesecake, if that will do as a cake substitute?

    2. Thx guys, finished it now but have to say a bit of a slog and not much fun for us.
      But there you are, you can’t please all the people etc. at least the sun is shining.
      Thx to all.

    3. Those two were my last ones in as well, along with 11a which was self-evident once I got 1d. I had to google it as had never heard of it.

  7. I found this a hard graft. Still unsure of 6d.

    I also found the quickie a hard graft too. Must be the sun. Mis-spelt clues don’t help either.

    1. I can never do the quickie, too thick to get just one word and have to think of another. I need the clues.

  8. Sorry to be picky on the hints, but so rarely can I contribute… but 22a is a device that changes the AC voltage to another AC voltage by induction across two windings. (It does not convert AC into direct current – that being done by a regulator or diode pack which is not part of 22a).

  9. Arrrrgggghhhhh Wimbledon with American commentators drives us bonkers. “Good use of the grass”, “extra serve”, “high rate of speed”… I even remember one American saying that Robinsons was one of the original tennis ball manufacturers. Maybe tennis on the screen with audio from the GP.

    1. Agreed, but listening to audio like that you miss the pop of the ball on the bat

  10. Hard work and lots of fun. 27a quite a new type of clue for me and I needed the hint , thanks! I liked 24a, even though I find these cockney clues very difficult.Thanks to all concerned.

  11. Excellent puzzle, pretty straightforward. Learned a new shrub today in 11a.

    Regardless of all the naysayers, I am rooting for Murray. Perhaps he will get a heads up and acknowledge that those thousands, more?, are mostly English and they all want him to win.

    1. Too right. He did a great job and we now have a winner. Remember, Virginia Wade won in the 25th anniversary of the Queen’s accession, and now Andy wins in the 60th anniversary of her coronation! No wonder everyone is over the moon.

  12. Late input from me as was glued all afternoon to the flat screen watching Andy at SW19!
    Well he did it at long last so congratulatory cheers!

    Faves : 24a, 3d and the four external 14-letter jobs.

    I expect the next tennis will be at Flushing Meadows.

  13. Knackered tonight! Done a stage of the Tour, driven a Grand Prix and played a tennis match – PHEW! :grin: Well done Chris Froome and Andy Murray.

    Nice puzzle today but the def in 22a is a bit weak IMHO. Transformers alter voltage, not current. I suppose that if voltage changes then so does current but that isn’t the primary function of a transformer. Not sure what BD’s on about in the hint, changing AC to DC would be a rectifier, not a transformer.

    Thanks to Virgilius and BD.

  14. Very late here today – been doing other stuff.
    I thought this was quite a tricky one but started trying to do it while waiting for the one-legged wonder to get her act together so that we could leave to take her back to London roughly at the time we’d decided to aim for last night – between 1.00 and 1.30 pm – should have known better – time keeping never was her strong point – eventually left a bit after 3.00pm. By then had done about half of the crossword. Arrived at her flat round about 5.00pm – she put the TV on just in time for us to watch the last few games of the Murray match. Well done to him.
    Got home about 8.00 pm – not much traffic in London for once – think that everyone was glued to the box or, more likely having driven past it, loafing around in the sun on Clapham Common. Finished crossword and had supper cooked by ‘his saintliness’.
    I still don’t really get 27a.
    My favourite clue was 13d. It was also my last one.
    With thanks to Virgilius and BD.

  15. Classy puzzle yet again from Virgilius .I thought 22a perfectly fair backed up by Chambers but I am a technophobe .
    After much deliberation favourite 8d closely followed by 27a .
    Thanks again Virgilius and BD .

  16. I found this difficult for a Virgilius (not that I’m complaining) & I don’t suppose quaffing several cold beers in the sun surrounded by sons & partners helped my concentration levels. (there was an awful lot of discussion as we’re trying to arrange next year’s holiday & with 2 of the party being school teachers it is proving stressful)

    Still got 11a & 16d to finish. Thanks to V & to BD for the tints & hips.

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