Toughie 1104 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 1104

Toughie No 1104 by MynoT

Hints and tips by Bufo

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Not very time-consuming. I don’t care for this grid with all the black squares. I feel as though I’m being short-changed. Mynot’s puzzles often have a ‘theme’ but I haven’t spotted anything in this puzzle. Have I missed something?

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5a    We blame poor man’s prize possession (3-4)
{EWE-LAMB} An anagram (poor) of WE BLAME gives a man’s prize possession (from Nathan’s parable of the rich man and the poor man in 2 Samuel 12: 1-14)

7a    Leave to leave (5)
{EXEAT} This could be 2 meanings or it could be a cryptic definition. Chambers defines the answer as follows: formal leave of absence, esp for a student to be out of college for more than one night; permission [leave] granted by a bishop to a priest to move on to another diocese

9a    What’s decided in court? That’s secret (6)
{COVERT} ‘Decided’ in CT (court)

10a    Switch from on to off left, say, disconnection (3,5)
{LEG BREAK} A delivery in cricket that turns from the on side to the off side = L (left) + ‘say’ + a disconnection

11a    Endless comment, raving about current triumph of hope over experience? (10)
{REMARRIAGE} A comment with the last letter removed + ‘raving’ about I (the symbol for electric current) gives what Dr Johnson described as the triumph of hope over experience

13a    Bear with financial officer endlessly (4)
{URSA} Bear (i.e. a constellation) is a financial office with the first and last letters removed (endlessly)

14a    With ‘in’ footwear, entering dance joint (4-3-6)
{BALL-AND-SOCKET} ‘With’ + footwear that goes inside the shoe go inside ‘dance’ to give a type of joint, e.g. the hip

16a    Meaning in Chinese: ‘Good’ (4)
{HANG} Meaning (as in ‘get the **** of’) = Chinese + G (good)

17a    Chinese food in Gloucestershire event? (6,4)
{SPRING ROLL} The Gloucestershire event takes place at Cooper’s Hill at the end of May each year

19a    New university with sexy environment for obsessive (8)
{NEUROTIC} N (new) + U (university) inside ‘sexy’

20a    Space in shelter by road (6)
{LEEWAY} Shelter + road

22a    Pigment with singular name found in Italian city (5)
{SIENA} Take a pigment obtained from earth and replace the double-N by a single-N

23a    Means of communication is rejected by return of European gang (7)
{SIGNAGE} A reversal of IS + a reversal of E (European) GANG


1d    Black English movement (4)
{JETÉ} ‘Black’ + E (English) = a leap in ballet

2d    Old police chief retains decree for bugs (8)
{BACTERIA} The most influential of Stalin’s secret police chiefs goes round a decree to give microorganisms

3d    Fight over egg? One surely wouldn’t (6)
{VEGGIE} ‘To fight’ goes round EGG

4d    Fabric produced by forward-looking person with a soft touch (10)
{SEERSUCKER} An Indian striped or checked fabric = a person who sees into the future + a person who’s a soft touch

5d    Run off with exotic African creature leaving soldier behind (5)
{ELOPE} Remove ANT (soldier) from the name of an African creature. I’m not sure why it’s exotic

6d    Sound unit in vulnerable tabernacle’s providing double security (4,3,6)
{BELT AND BRACES} The abbreviation for decibel (sound unit) goes inside an anagram (vulnerable) of TABERNACLE’S

8d    Passage of heavenly body through island getting off public transport to pose (7)
{TRANSIT} Public transport that runs on rails with I (island) removed + ‘to pose’

12d    Symbolic narratives which Mrs Malaprop might find on the banks of the Nile (10)
{ALLEGORIES} From a speech by Mrs Malaprop in The Rivals: “She’s as headstrong as an ******** on the banks of the Nile”

14d    Pilgrimage among busy people to find appetisers (7)
{BHAJEES} The annual Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca goes inside ‘busy people’ to give an appetiser in Indian cuisine

15d    One upset by old record beginning to yellow in drinker’s study (8)
{OENOLOGY} An anagram (upset) of ONE + O (old) + record + Y (first letter of yellow) = the study of wine

17d    Books regiment to fence nasty rut (6)
{SUTRAS} Books in Hinduism or Buddism + a crack regiment in the British army round an anagram (nasty) of RUT

18d    Climber‘s one among 21 injured (5)
{LIANE} A climbing plant found in tropical forests = I 9one) inside an anagram (injured) of the answer to 21 down

21d    Impetuosity of the Spanish one (4)
{ELAN} ‘The’ in Spanish + one

A merry Christmas to one and all. If you’re going to the centenary do on Saturday I’ll see you there.

12 comments on “Toughie 1104

  1. A fairly average (non-themed) MynoT for me. Thanks to him and Bufo.

    I liked 5a because it made me think of Kath.

    See you on Saturday.

  2. My last few took this into 3* time, and I needed to check a couple of things on the internet.
    Thanks to MynoT, and to Bufo.

    I hope tomorrow’s toughie is a good one, because I doubt I will have much time to look at toughies until I am back in the office 6th Jan.

  3. Apart from checking the old police chief at 2d all pretty straightforward, favourites were 6d and 12d thanks to MynoT and to Bufo for the comments.

  4. From past experience, we spent some time studying the completed puzzle to try and pick a theme or gimmick, but without finding anything. Had the right answer for 17a without any knowledge of the event. 1d was our last in and 4d our favourite.
    Thanks MynoT and Bufo.

  5. Thanks to MynoT and to Bufo for his comments – Looking forward to Saturday’s Centenary Puzzle!

  6. Thanks Bufo and Merry Christmas to you too .I certainly needed your illumination yet again and thanks to Myno T ,in particular for 6d .

  7. How do we square the pilgrimage Hajj with the Haj in Bhajees? Am I missing something or am I just out of date?

    1. Welcome to the blog John.
      Like many words imported from languages with different alphabets there are a number of possible transliterations of the word (from Arabic) for the Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca. Chambers lists hadj, haj and hajj.

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