Toughie 1045

Toughie No 1045 by Osmosis

Pointing the way

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ****

Cleo is helping me with today’s typical Osmosis puzzle. A few bits of tricky wordplay, but enjoyable nonetheless.

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Across hints by Antony

1a    Old vehicle number occupying Russian car for all to see (6)
{LANDAU} – N(umber) inside a much-maligned make of Russian car and followed by the letter that indicates that a film is suitable for all to see

5a    Stolen case? Outside, five principal characters suspect (8)
{CABBAGED} – a verb meaning stolen, allegedly derived from the practise of tailors who took small pieces of a customer’s cloth as a perquisite, is derived by putting a case inside an anagram (suspect) of the first five characters of the alphabet –

9a    Doing a turn say, Hispanic type bends like rubber? (10)
{GELATINOUS} – reverse (doing a turn) the Latin abbreviation of say/for example and follow it with a six-letter Hispanic type and the plural of a type of bend used as an air-trap in a pipe

10a    Leave surgeon in theatre area (4)
{GODS} – a two-letter verb meaning to leave followed by the qualification achieved by a surgeon

11a    News updates about remains, at half-nine, showing indiscretion (8)
{RASHNESS} – a three-letter abbreviation for a system that allows computer users to view the news content of many web pages in a single screen around the remains of a fire and the second half of niNE

12a    Type of map acquired with foreign currency’s used for archipelago (6)
{AZORES} – a type of street map followed by a foreign currency and the S from ‘S

13a    Learner in Lincoln practised (4)
{ABLE} – L(earner) inside the first name of President Lincoln

15a    Unionist contrived to eradicate parking that’s exorbitant (8)
{USURIOUS} – U(nionist) followed by an adjective meaning contrived or bogus without (to eradicate) P(arking)

18a    European city that’s less urban, somewhat regressive (8)
{BRUSSELS} – hidden (somewhat) and reversed (regressive) inside the clue

19a    Track comprises mass of dung heaps primarily (4)
{PATH} – a mass of dung from a cow followed by the initial letter (primarily) of Heaps

21a    London area curtailed crush — film later showing? (6)
{SEQUEL} – a two-letter area of London followed by most of (curtailed) a verb meaning to crush

23a    One asks scamp to hide mineral in both hands (8)
{IMPLORER} – a scamp followed by a mineral inside (to hide … in) the abbreviation for both hands or sides

25a    Common name, reflecting one from Madrid (3-1)
{NON-U} – N(ame) followed by the reversal (reflecting) of the Spanish (from Madrid) for one

26a    Pointer having to play with mail (10)
{FINGERPOST} – a verb meaning to play or meddle with followed by some mail or letters

27a    Church can be so extreme — watch display (8)
{STEEPLED} – an adjective meaning extreme or exorbitant followed by a type of display that was popular on wristwatches back in the seventies

28a    Returned the empty onto float? Sure (3,3)
{YOU BET} – ThE without its middle letter (empty) and an anchored float serving as a navigation mark, all reversed (returned)

Down hints by Cleo

2d    The Gunners start to struggle and 50 leave stadium (5)
{ARENA} Remove the ‘start’ of struggle and the Roman numeral for fifty from the football team known informally as the Gunners. I’m not getting involved in any football team related discussions here!

3d    The deal for cruising on liner is everlasting (9)
{DEATHLESS} An adjective meaning immortal is obtained from an anagram (cruising) of THE DEAL followed by the abbreviation used for a ship such as a liner.

4d    Type of clothing seen in college congress (6)
{UNISEX} Follow the abbreviation for an institution of higher education (college)with congress in the sense of intercourse.

5d    Challenged short search on island done carelessly (5-10)
{CROSS-QUESTIONED} A word meaning ill-humoured or vexed (short) followed by a search to accomplish a task, the single-letter abbreviation for island, and an anagram (carelessly) of DONE.

6d    Toiled to create a section of body by sculpture (4,1,3)
{BUST A GUT} A sculpture of the chest of a human being, A (from the clue) and the lower part of the alimentary canal (section of body).

7d    Nag heard disturbing regulars in taproom, causing bother (5)
{AGGRO} Insert the two letters which sound like the way a child might refer to a horse into the regular letters of tApRoOm.

8d    Scotch addict upset officer — getting the consequences? (3,6)
{END RESULT} A noun meaning to stop (scotch can be a verb meaning to put a stop to) a reversal (upset) of an addict and finally the abbreviation for lieutenant (officer).

14d    Kindle, due to being mishandled, ineffective (6,3)
{BURNED OUT} A verb meaning to set fire to (kindle) followed by an anagram (being mishandled) of DUE TO.

16d    Spontaneous monkey frolicking with workers (9)
{IMPROMPTU} A monkey or mischievous child, a boisterous prank and the abbreviation for an association of workers formed to improve their working conditions.

17d    Bread basket starts to fill up — loaf makes excess (8)
{BELLYFUL} Bread basket is, like the first five letters of the solution, an informal way of referring to ones stomach area. This should be followed with the ‘starts’ to Fill Up and Loaf.

20d    Swift retracing river snapped by watcher? (6)
Swift retracing English river snapped by watcher? (6) (paper version)
{SPEEDY} I presume the English has been moved from the online version of this clue because this particular river flows in both England and Wales. Either way, it should be reversed (retracing) and inserted into a person who keeps a secret watch on others.

22d    Scientific apparatus website declaimed (1-4)
{U-TUBE} Interestingly if you investigoogle this particular piece of apparatus, the search only brings up details of the video-sharing website which is a homophone (declaimed) of the solution. An image search is much more useful!.

24d    Follow varying directions on outskirts in Ukraine (5)
{ENSUE} Three compass directions are followed by the ‘outskirts’ of UkrainE.

Cleo really enjoyed this Friday Toughie. It had the right amount of toughness and the most wonderful surface readings, so thanks as ever to Osmosis.


  1. the dodger
    Posted September 6, 2013 at 2:29 pm | Permalink

    My thanks to A+C for the two explanations I needed- 5 + 11 ac. Never heard of 5ac, but tailoring is not my strong suit. as for 11ac- Grrrrr- another darned computer term- my pet peeve. Otherwise it all slotted in nicely,not the toughest of friday toughies,but enjoyably do-able.Thanks to Osmosis and A+C.

    • Posted September 6, 2013 at 2:36 pm | Permalink

      If you scroll down the sidebar you will see that you can select these feeds.

  2. Pegasus
    Posted September 6, 2013 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

    Most enjoyable puzzle N-E last to yield especially 5a, favourites were 4d 15a and 28a thanks to Osmosis and to the Duo for the comments.

  3. BigBoab
    Posted September 6, 2013 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

    Super crossword, super setter and super review. Thanks to all concerned.

  4. halcyon
    Posted September 6, 2013 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

    Have to agree with BigBoab.
    Particular favourites 11a and 5d.

  5. Only fools
    Posted September 6, 2013 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

    Owing to incessant heavy rain and a 13C drop in temperature from yesterday had plenty of time and needed a fair bit for the NE corner ! Last in 12a and favourite 4d .
    Thanks to the twosome and Osmosis for a smashing but for me a testing puzzles.

  6. 2Kiwis
    Posted September 6, 2013 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

    Challenging, but we got there. All good fun. Bit rushed this morning as we are off to be marshalls for an endurance run in the mountains. Thanks Osmosis and the team.