Toughie 1044 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 1044

Toughie No 1044 by Warbler

Watch out for 15 March!

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Good afternoon from South Staffs. I’m doing an extra shift this week to help cover for Bufo.

The top half of the puzzle went in very quickly, and though I had a little more difficulty with the bottom, it was still ** for difficulty as far as I was concerned. 20a was the last one in.

In the hints below, the definitions are underlined.

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1a           Over route limit? Could be a hidden reason (8,6)
{ ULTERIOR MOTIVE } Anagram (could be) of OVER ROUTE LIMIT.

9a           Arrested, at first the old man got in a tizz (8)
{ PANICKED } An informal word for father followed by a slang word for arrested (by the police).

10a         Doctor of Law‘s endless talk (5)
{ RABBI } The law concerned is Jewish law. Remove the final T (endless) from an informal word for talking at length.

12a         Day in Rome — departs Italy heading west (4)
{ IDES } One of the days which occurred every month in the Roman calendar. Take a word which means ‘departs’ (this life) and move the IVR code for Italy to the left.

13a         Challenger perhaps accepts fair blows if one’s knocked out (10)
{ SPACECRAFT } Anagram (blows) of ACCEPTS FA(I)R with the I removed (one’s knocked out).

15a         What a pest! Jealous and cunning (8)
{ GREENFLY } A charade of the colour associated with jealousy or envy, and a slang adjective for cunning or knowing.

16a         Gene‘s fine performance of Romeo (6)
{ FACTOR } Another charade. The abbreviation for Fine, a performance on stage, a shortened form of ‘of’ and the letter represented by Romeo in the NATO alphabet.

18a         Fruit is floating in torrent (6)
{ RAISIN } IS (from the clue) inside the stuff that may come down in torrents.

20a         Swallow’s issue falls? (8)
{ DOWNFLOW } An informal word for swallow, often used in relation to pints of beer, followed by a verb describing an issue of water, giving something of which waterfalls are an example.

23a         Send home rogue pirate trapped by renegade European (10)
{ REPATRIATE } Anagram (rogue) of PIRATE inside a word for a renegade, with European added at the end.

24a         Lacking precision, not very fit (4)
{ AGUE } Remove the initial V (not very) from a word meaning ‘lacking precision’ to get a fit or a fever.

26a         Church division is impounding booze? On the contrary (5)
{ AISLE } IS (from the clue) inside a variety of alcoholic drink, which is the reverse (on the contrary) of what the wordplay says.

27a         Disney was one such man, to air figures in a new way (8)
{ ANIMATOR } Anagram (in a new way) of MAN TO AIR.

28a         Fine little hoofer dances around hotel in fun (3,3,4,2,2)
{ FOR THE HELL OF IT } An abbreviation for Fine (for the second time in these clues) followed by an anagram (dances) of LITTLE HOOFER with the letter represented by Hotel in the NATO alphabet inside it.


2d           Swing net with no difficulty they say (7)
{ TRAPEZE } A swing found high up in a circus tent. A verb meaning ‘net’ followed by a homophone (they say) of a noun expressing ‘no difficulty’.

3d           Rule out government control (4)
{ REIN } The rule of a monarch with the G removed ( out government).

4d           Gall present in two trees (3,5)
{ OAK APPLE } The names of two types of tree give a growth found on the first of them.

5d           Student doctor cut back to front in a very short time (6)
{ MEDICO } Start with a kitchen term for cutting something into small square pieces. Move its last letter to the beginning (back to front) then put the result insidean informal term for a very short time.

6d           Broken icy earth covers heart of Kansas. These might help to get a grip (4,6)
{ TYRE CHAINS } Anagram (broken) of ICY EARTH followed by (covers, in a Down clue) the middle two letters of KaNSas.

7d           Thrilling sensation cut short by angry outburst (7)
{ VIBRANT } An informal (rather 1960s) word for sensation with the final E removed, followed by an angry outburst.

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8d           Like a lemon dessert? (11)
{ BITTERSWEET } An all-in-one clue. Divided (6,5) the first word is ‘like a lemon’ and the second a word for dessert.

11d         One may be spoiling to take the gilt off it (11)
{ GINGERBREAD } Taking the gilt off this is a well-known expression for spoiling an experience. Is this a cryptic clue?

14d         Suspicious incident involving time and money leads to accusation (10)
{ INDICTMENT } Anagram (suspicious) of INCIDENT  with Time and Money inside.

17d         Plot against American defecting is very easy initially (8)
{ CONTRIVE } The Latin word for against with the final A removed (American defecting)  followed by the first letters (initially) of Is Very Easy.

19d         Some claim pastoral style to lay it on thick (7)
{ IMPASTO } A painting term hidden (some) in the clue.

21d         Slog. Self-explanatory exits! (4,3)
{ LOGS OFF } This is a reverse anagram.  The answer, which describes what someone does when he closes a computer down, is also the anagram fodder and indicator for an anagram of which ‘slog’ is the result.

22d         Silver for one sanctimonious judge (6)
{ PIRATE } Silver here is Long John! A two-letter word for ‘sanctimonious’ and a verb meaning ‘judge’.

25d         Healthy sounding salutation (4)
{ HAIL } A greeting which is a homophone (sounding) of a word meaning healthy, as in ‘—- and hearty’.

A little heavy on the anagrams?


18 comments on “Toughie 1044

  1. I agree with the ratings but had trouble with 16a. I got the answer but still find the clue unsatisfactory. I don’t really link ‘gene’ and ‘factor’, I suppose. Thanks to Deep Threat for the explanations.

  2. A gentle one before the blood, toil, tears, and sweat of the Friday toughie!
    Thanks to Warbler, and to Deep Threat.

  3. Was disappointed by todays back page cryptic, so ,having checked the rating, thought I would have a go as it was ‘only ‘a** .Once I got into it, I found it quite logical, it helped as I quickly solved the ‘framework’, really enjoyed it’, took a while to get the Silver’ in 22d as I had my chemists head on! Thanks DT for the pics,2d looks a bit’ Art Deco-I’ve seen her somewhere before.

  4. I finished this one and so was expecting a 1* for difficulty – I was quite pleased when I found that DT had given it 2*.
    I enjoyed it very much – not sure that I’ve tried a Warbler Toughie before but will keep my eyes open for the next.
    I liked lots of these clues but I think my favourite was 15a.
    With thanks to Warbler and Deep Threat.

  5. Re . 11d, I think its sort of cryptic on the grounds that i cant imagine it being used in a “quickie”.

  6. I notice that there are no comments about today’s subtitle “Watch out for 15 March!”

    Presumably everyone understands – apart from me! :cry:

  7. Got to this late but found it very straightforward, I had at first entered Pilate into 22 then wondered what on earth it had to do with silver “duh” moment. Thanks to Warbler and Deep Threat.

  8. A slight delay, largely caused by putting in a wrong answer for 7d initially, held up the E side. Otherwise it all slotted in smoothly. A pleasant gentle stroll.
    Thanks Warbler and DT.

  9. Thanks Deep threat for the extra shift and thanks to ,Micawber whose puzzles for me are always enjoyable although I agree with Liverpool Mike re16a .
    Favourite at a pinch was 8d

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