ST 2712 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2712 (Hints)

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2712 (Hints)

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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Don’t forget that there is a new 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.

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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


7a Warm kind of fire that’s a contradiction in terms? (8)
When this adjective meaning warm is followed by fire it becomes a contradiction in terms

11a Close family wrapping son in fur (8)
A verb meaning to close and a three-letter word for family around (wrapping) S(on)

12a Good ensemble in dance performance, mainly in royal residence (8,6)
An adjective meaning of good behaviour and an ensemble, perhaps one performing a play, inside most of (mainly) a classical dance performance

15a Like Northern people as part of race, you might say (4)
These Northern people sound like part of a race

20a Put right about wrong I, perhaps, interpreted incorrectly (14)
A verb meaning put right or repaired around an anagram (wrong) of I PERHAPS

23a Bloomer as second doctor comes in immediately before operation (8)
S(econd} followed by the abbreviation for D(octo)R, the latter inside (comes in) a three-letter word meaning immediately and OP(eration)

28a Maiden spoke and spoke, in barely audible way (8)
M(aiden) followed by a verb meaning spoke


1d Guitar piece that makes one experience anxiety (4)
Two definitions

2d Boundaries set up by male — that’s unfair to females (6)
Some boundaries scored in cricket are reversed (set up in a down clue) and followed by M(ale)

6d Unlike readers, the writer will perform repeatedly (10)
The abbreviation for the writer will, in the first person, followed by a verb meaning to perform repeatedly

8d Movement in no hurry to follow left-winger (3-4)
A verb meaning to follow and then someone with left-wing political views

14d Unsociable type‘s side-splitting joke? (5)
This unsociable type could be built by taking a three-letter joke, as in “have you heard the (joke) about”, inside (splitting) the two sides [Thanks to Crypticsue for the improved explanation]

16d Weapon the old man has for response to challenge (8)
Split as (2’1,5) this could describe a weapon belonging to the old man

26d A border that’s said to require attention (4)
The A from the clue followed by a border

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 any ANSWERS, whether WHOLE, PARTIAL or INCORRECT, or any ALTERNATIVE CLUES in your comment.

Please read these instructions carefully. Offending comments may be redacted or deleted.

Today it’s Happy Birthday to Ricky Hatton (34) and Britt Ekland (70)

51 comments on “ST 2712 (Hints)

  1. I found this a little trickier than normal, perhaps as a consequence of last night’s revelry! Very enjoyable as always though…
    Many thanks to Virgilius, and to BD.

    1. The abbreviation for new followed by a word meaning strange and the abbreviation for editor give a word that indicates a sign of approval

  2. Found this really difficult and had to resort to Dave’s hints for a few, thanks Dave, no favourite clue today, no real complaints, just too hard for me!

  3. 3.5* for me. Last one in was 26d because I was thinking of another kind of border whose letters fitted.

  4. Too tough for me today. Managed the top half -just- but most of the bottom is a mystery. Too many complex clues for my liking and no true anagrams.
    Even with BDs clues I can’t answer 26d, 16d, 14d or 20a.
    Still at least the sun is shining and I can pick some more apples from this years bumper crop.

    1. Stop press! Mrs B got 14d and the rest then fell into place.
      Last in was 26d which was a really clever bit of misdirection.
      Still think it was tough with complex clues but Thx to BD (more thought unravelled the hints) have completed it.

      1. Well done Mrs B – had you thought of printing off her own copy of the puzzle for her and having a competition ? :)

  5. A really fabulous puzzle though I just can’t make out the second word of 8d, despite the hint !I have to go out soon but I’d love to finish this first . Help!

    1. Got it , finally. Thanks to Virgillus and BD, lots of favourites, but perhaps 9a wins out, or 19a.

  6. Apart from being completely stumped by 16d in spite of having all the checking letters, I was delighted to finish this. 26d made me laugh and I see I put a few asterisks beside other clues that I especially enjoyed – but won’t go for a plurality of faves as even tho Kath is away (we miss you Kath & hope you’re having a sp,ended break) she might be watching :-) . Thank you setter & BD. We’ve just had a huge cooked ‘breakfast’ post Harvest Festival and now need to walk it off with Poppy’s enthusiastic help. Loved the chatter yesterday, even tho couldn’t join in. Greetings to all.

  7. P.S. if anyone can give me a pointer to 16d in addition to BD’s kind hint I’d be most grateful. I’m being very slow to catch on today…..

    1. BD’s hint is very clear. Look at the defnition – put a weapon (5) after a way of saying belonging to ‘the old man’.

    2. I think the definition here Poppy i.e. the answer your looking for is a bit obscure – you are looking for a word that means response to challenge, in this case it is a verbal response, I think I am allowed to say that, although these days it is often used on computers too, you want a three letter word for ‘the old man has’ followed by a weapon

      1. Thanks so much – a real d’oh moment (yet again)! Not helped by my blunder over a wrong first letter so no wonder I was travelling nowhere at the speed of light.

  8. Thanks to Virgilius and to Big Dave for the hints. Found this very enjoyable, but quite tricky. Lots of really good clues, favourite was 6d, which was last in. Was 3*/4* for me. A lovely day in Central London, got a run in this morning. Come on the Gooners!

  9. Naughty Kath bans livid dingus for praise (6,2,3,8)

    Praise to our leader and the setter from anagram (naughty) of KATH BANS LIVID DINGUS.

  10. After struggling with a few puzzles this past week, I was right on wavelength here. It wasn’t read and write in, but got the answers with just a little thought. I wish you hadn’t put the illustration for 11a, that is my pet peeve. I did enjoy this, sorry it’s over. Thanks to Virgilius and BD.

  11. Lovely stuff. I thoroughly enjoyed this. 8D was the last one in and is an expression I’m not familiar with. Faves are 3D, 6D 16D, 26D and 17A. Thatnks to BD for the review and to Virgilius for the fun.

  12. Thank you Virgilius – got there in the end with help from Mrs SW. Found this hard compered with many Sunday puzzles and wasn’t the usual good fun with a lot of laughs ! Thanks BD for the hints – I did check them all to check my answers, ‘cos I was so unsure ! been slacking this p.m. – sitting on the beach at Cley in the sunshine instead of tramping round the reserve !

  13. We are stuck on the final two 25a and 22d, help please. Got 22d (doh).

    Thanks BD and Virgilius.

    1. 25a- Tantali – (as there are two of you) or are you Tantuluses? Anyway I digress……a three letter word for strike, as in hit, comes after a three letter word for base, to give you a word for ‘confused situation’ as in *** **** ** * ****** ******* ****** ( I think)

    1. Depends who’s on duty for the crossword police! You may have given a couple of letters away…

            1. Well done Arsenal even though they knocked us off the top, at least one of my sons and grandson no 4 will be happy

    2. You see what I mean – never can get past the crossword police! You and I will be picking up crumbs in the naughty corner Toni!!!!

  14. Now I have to grovel and ask for help with 13d please.
    I haven’t got 27a but that may fall into place if I get the down one.

    Ps not keen on cake, is there any chocolate in the naughty corner?

    1. Err…think of a wind instrument with ‘in’ in the middle – then take out the ‘in’.

      Secondary clue – ******** ********* ******!

    2. Am I allowed to suggest concentrate on the end of the clue ? 27a is obvious, especially after you’ve got it.

  15. Yet another great crossword for a Sunday! My rating is 2.5* for difficulty and 4* for enjoyment.

    As seems to have been my pattern throughout this week, one quarter (the SW today) took me longer than the other three put together. 15a was my last one in.

    Even though I got the answer for 14d quickly, I struggled for a while to understand the wordplay until I finally got the joke. 

    A long list of great clues, with special mentions for 12a, 20a, 2d and 15d.

    Many thanks to Virgilius and to BD.

      1. Sorry yes I have a couple of domains. Question is still how does 9a work though, even though I think, in fact (!) I have the answer ?

        1. You need a five letter word for ‘make a recovery’ around i.e. ‘without’ the one letter abbreviation for a certain drug to give you ‘in fact’

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