ST 2743 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2743

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2743

A full review by gnomethang

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

This puzzle was published on Sunday, 11th May 2014

Morning All!. Some lovely clues in this puzzle which I found to be a steady solve with no real problems apart from justifying the unknown axe!.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.  You can also add your assessment by selecting from one to five stars at the bottom of the post.


1a           Like beer provided by clubs, a little rough (6)
CHOPPY – Real Ale is sometimes described as HOPPY. Place that after (is provided by) C for Clubs from the bridge card game notation.

4a           Does some groundwork for suit (6)
SPADES – Two definitions – digs or SPADES (does some ground work) and the card suit.

8a           Country in our hands after reform (8)
HONDURAS – An anagram (after reform_ of OUR HANDS.

10a         Business leader I betray, one of four beginning on board (6)
BISHOP – The leading letter of B(usiness) then I SHOP/betray.

11a         Movement in which you’ll find people with convictions (4)
STIR – Another double definition. The movement of fluid with a spoon and the colloquial term for jail (Wherein people with criminal convictions are held).

12a         Old mathematician improperly made riches (10)
ARCHIMEDES – An improper anagram of MADE RICHES.

13a         Factionalism making old weapons trendy (12)
PARTISANSHIP – I had forgotten that a PARTISAN is an old double-headed axe used as a weapon. Follow that plural with HIP for trendy.

16a         Encouraging to hold copies back as parsimonious behaviour (12)
CHEESEPARING – A lovely word!. Place the reversal of APES (copies back) into CHEERING (encouraging).

20a         Part of exam, oddly, I get right — not a real threat (5,5)
PAPER TIGER – Part of an exam section is a PAPER. Then make an anagram (oddly) of I GET and follow that with R for Right.

21a         Negative response about competing against dark blue (4)
NAVY – A NAY or vote against (appropriately today!) around/about V for Versus or competing against.

22a         Previously support European (6)
BEFORE – A charade of BE FOR (support) and the E, the abb. of European (as in European elections!)

23a         Weak ruler’s rationale (8)
THINKING – A charade of THIN (weak) and KING (ruler). The apostrophe ‘s is expanded to IS to mean <this wordplay> IS or means <this word>.

24a         Socialist’s beginning, on many occasions, to be moderate (6)
SOFTEN – S, the abb. of Socialist and then OFTEN (on many occasions).

25a         Line penned by author with difficulty (6)
HARDLY – L for Line placed inside (or penned by) Thomas HARDY the author.


1d           Altered raincoat from area in Europe (8)
CROATIAN – An anagram (altered) of RAINCOAT.

2d           It could be the usual architectural style (5)
ORDER – Two definitions again – ‘the USUAL’ order in one’s local style (Carlsberg) and a term denoting a Greek architectural style.

3d           Conceivably tape rhapsody, in part (7)
PERHAPS – Hidden in (in part) of taPE RHAPSody.

5d           Left in bar, is hard to get out (7)
PUBLISH – Place L for Left iside a PUB (or bar) then add IS from the clue and H for Hard (the abbreviation coming from pencil classifications as in HB).

6d           Kind of paint that’s bad for kennels (9)
DISTEMPER – A definition and cryptic definition, the latter being a disease found in dogs hence bad for kennels.

7d           Demonstrator in rain not sounding the same (6)
SHOWER – Lovely! An anti-homophone!. Someone who shows is written the same as a splash of rain but is pronounced differently. If only I could remember what this type of word is called technically!)

9d           Prophetic vision assistant’s seen on location, we hear (6,5)
SECOND SIGHT – A SECOND (an assistant in a duella) followed by SIGHT (a homophone, indicated by ‘we hear’, of site/location.

14d         Marked as present and reprimanded (6,3)
TICKED OFF – Two definitions again – the first meaning ticked off in a register at school for example.

15d         Not following uniform style, oddly? (8)
UNEVENLY – The first definition is not being even, the second meaning that an odd number is un-even.

17d         Taken out of context, remedy is drastic (7)
EXTREME – The hallmark of a good hidden word is that you miss it the second time you look at the clue!. Take some letters out of contEXT REMedy.

18d         Skill in place for orchestra with a set of musical compositions (7)
PARTITA – I dragged this word from somewhere in the back of my head. Place ART (skill) inside the PIT (where the orchestra sits in a theatre) and follow that with the A from the clue.

19d         Gentle touch making worries subside, initially (6)
CARESS – CARES (worries) and the initial letter of S(ubside).

21d         Churchman or academic upset about king that’s defenceless (5)
NAKED – reverse (upset in a down clue) a DEAN (churchman or University academic) around/about K for King from chess notation.

Thanks to Mr Greer for the edifying puzzle – I’ll see you all tomorrow for a review of last Saturday’s prize cryptic.


3 comments on “ST 2743

  1. Super puzzle and a super review! Much appreciation to Virgilius and Gnomethang.

    As always, I have found going through the full review very helpful. I didn’t know that ‘hoppy’ is another word for Real Ale. (I guessed the answer from relating ‘hops’ to beer.) I missed the double definition in 4a. At the time of solving this puzzle, I used one of Big Dave’s hints to explain ‘partisan’. Haven’t come across this double-headed axe. It sounds lethal! These apart, I fared all right. 18d always makes me think of J S Bach!

    1. Hi and thanks Catnap – just to clarify, ‘Hoppy’ is an adjective that can be applied to the taste (i.e. tastes of hops = hoppy) – its not a word FOR Real Ale

      1. Thank you very much for the clarification, Gnomethang. I haven’t come across the usage. (‘Hoppy’ usually makes me think of rabbits!)

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