December 25, 2013 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog

Double Toughie 100005

Double Toughie No 100005 by Elgar

Just lovely!

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

Season’s Greetings from the Calder Valley! One of the joys of Christmas is that the Telegraph continues to treat its subscribers with top-class puzzles throughout the festive season and we are spoiled this year with a Dada Toughie and the usual Rufus Cryptic and Elgar’s Double Toughie.

If you haven’t seen it. Stop now and go and print it off from here.

Quite simply, this is a breath-taking puzzle and one that may have you reaching for a hanky. Don’t let the preamble spoil things for you, this is a most amazingly clever grid construct by Elgar and is a fine tribute to one of the events that affected the crossword community towards the end of the year.

Basically with the exception of the clues to 1 ac / 13 ac which is a definition of the two entries at 24 ac and 47 ac, either of the two words at 1 ac / 13 ac may provide a definition for each half of each double across clue. So as you can imagine this is a brilliant grid construct and it does mean a couple of the down answers are a little more obscure, but those clues are fairly straightforward to get. In each across clue – I’ll define the across answers as either 1 ac or 13ac. I have shown the divide in each clue with a red slash.

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Toughie 100005

Toughie No 100005 by Dada

A Cracker at Christmas

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

There’s nothing too taxing in this enjoyable puzzle by Dada. If you can find a moment between the mince pies a comment would be appreciated.
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DT 100005

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 100005

Hints and tips by scchua

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BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment ***

Season’s Greetings and A Happy New Year to all.  A typical Rufus with his trademark cryptic and double defns. anagrams and the odd nautical reference.  An easy one, even for him, which should leave plenty of time for your Christmas lunch.  A 1* or less for difficulty, and just about 3* for enjoyment.  Thanks to Rufus.

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Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to all our readers

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Big Dave and the team of bloggers would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

A special thank you to all the crossword setters, especially to those who have taken the time to leave comments on the blog, and to Phil McNeill and his team at Telegraph Puzzles.

If you are one of several thousand lurkers that visit the site every day – why not break cover and say hello!

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