Toughie 1194 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 1194

Toughie No 1194 by Messinae

On a cold and gray Chicago mornin’

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

While this Toughie is not a candidate for the Friday slot, I found it to be a bit harder than those usually encountered on a Tuesday.

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    Poor district to reach touring Hungary (6)
{GHETTO} – a phrasal verb meaning to reach (3,2) around the IVR code for Hungary

ARVE Error: need id and provider

5a    Be more steady at sea, lacking interest (8)
{LISTLESS} – split as (4,4) this could mean to be more steady at sea

9a    Easy terms French author used in ‘Snow on Glacier River’ (5-5)
{NEVER-NEVER} – a French science-fiction author inside the granular snow, not yet compacted into ice, lying on the surface at the upper end of a glacier and followed by R(iver)

10a    Doctor with hospital procedure for delivery (4)
{DROP} – D(octo)R followed by the abbreviated form of a hospital procedure

11a    He brought traveller’s tale of standard dish from Turkey (8)
{PARDONER} – the author of one of The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer is a charade of a standard or norm, particularly a score in golf, and a Turkish dish consisting of spiced lamb cooked on a spit

12a    Keep quiet about trendy record (6)
{MINUTE} – a word meaning quiet or dumb around a two-letter word meaning trendy gives a record of a meeting

13a    Gathered in trug, light fruit (4)
{UGLI} – hidden (gathered) inside the clue

15a & 18a    Prompt Archer to collect lady’s case — it remains to be seen (4,4,4,4)
{ONLY TIME WILL TELL} – a phrase meaning prompt or punctual (2.4) and a famous swiss archer around the outer letters (case) of L[ad]Y

19a    Organised students keep Northern women in order (4)
{NUNS} – the usual students organisation around (keep) N(orthern)

21a    I’m high-flying Brit in meteorological line (6)
{ISOBAR} – a phrase meaning I’m high-flying around B(rit)

23a    Nymph in mountain — one features in The Ring (8)
{TOREADOR} – a mountain nymph inside a three-letter word for a mountain or peak gives someone who features in the bull ring

25a    Mimic returned some money (4)
{MYNA} – this bird that mimics human speech comes from the reversal (returned) of a word meaning some and M(oney)

26a    Oil producer before home country (5,5)
{PREEN GLAND} – this organ on a bird that secretes oil is a charade of a three-letter word meaning before and the home country, as long as you don’t live in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland!

27a    Trawl collects ordinary fish (8)
{DRAGONET} – a trawl of the kind used to catch fish around O(rdinary) gives a marine fish which often lies partly buried in the seabed

28a    Cautious financier has hour to cover margin (6)
{HEDGER} – H(ou)R around (to cover) a margin or border


2d    Creature with urge to break into short laugh (5)
{HYENA} – an urge inside (to break into) a two-letter word for a laugh

3d    Time to study philosopher is drudgery (9)
{TREADMILL} – T(ime) followed by a verb meaning to study and an English philosopher who is making his second appearance today

4d    Admitting drinking, losing head (6)
{OWNING} – a verb meaning drinking quickly without its initial letter

5d    Where one may train — Penny Lane perhaps (9,6)
{LIVERPOOL STREET} – or more accurately where one may catch a train – Penny Lane is an example (perhaps) of this thoroughfare in the Beatles’ home town

6d    Fellows move slowly in race over rough terrain (8)
{SCRAMBLE} – the three-letter abbreviation of senior members of a college regarded collectively, and where they might be found, followed by a verb meaning to move slowly

7d    Left Arabian port bearing burden (5)
{LADEN} – L(eft) followed by a port which is now part of the Yemen

8d    Chap aiming for game and most tricks securing rubber finally in bridge (9)
{SPORTSMAN} – this chap who hunts wild game is derived from an anagram (tricks) of MOST around (securing) the final letter of [rubbe]R all inside a bridge

14d    One denying profits to philosopher (9)
{GAINSAYER} – does anyone use this word for someone who denies a fact or statement these days? – some profits followed by another English philosopher

16d    Highly-armed irregular lent cadet (9)
{TENTACLED} – an anagram (irregular) of LENT CADET

17d    A printer working in temporary building (8)
{TERRAPIN®} – an anagram (working) of A PRINTER gives a trademarked name for a type of prefabricated one-storey building for temporary use

20d    Pull serving girl without resistance (6)
{WRENCH} – a slang word for a serving girl around (without) R(esistance)

22d    Dress up grand arty broadcaster (5)
{BRAGG} – the reversal of a dress or item of clothing followed by G(rand)

24d    Wild animalone of several in pound (5)
{OUNCE} – two definitions – a wild animal of the cat family and any of sixteen to be found in a pound in weight

I’ll be back with tomorrow’s back-page puzzle.

14 comments on “Toughie 1194

  1. Enjoyable fare today favourites 15 & 18a and 26a thanks to Messinae and to Big Dave for the comments.

  2. I enjoyed this very much, not overly difficult but great fun. Thanks to Messinae and to BD for the super review.

  3. I enjoyed this very much too.
    I liked 15/18a and 5 and 20d.
    With thanks to Messinae and BD.

  4. Odd how this happens, but I sailed through the grid. Even words new to me, like 17D and 27A, were clearly clued and readily confirmed. To be sure, I did need the review to fully unravel some of the more complex clues. Many thanks to BD for that, and to Messinae.

  5. I really enjoyed solving this whilst spending most of the day in a hospital waiting room. Thanks setter and BD.

  6. Needed to consult BRB to confirm 17d. Enjoyed the 15a/18a combination. Thought 11a was clever. Good fun.
    Thanks Messinae and BD

  7. Quite a stiff challenge but l got there without having to draw on a BD hint in the end. 17d and the nymph in 23a were new to me but the answers were pretty obvious so l needed only a peek at the dictionary to confirm my guesses. 3*/4* overall and 5d my favourite. Thanks to Messinae and Big Dave.

  8. Not being a Toughie regular I unexpectedly completed without too much of a struggle apart from a couple in the SW corner where hinting was invaluable so many thanks Messinae and BD. Possibly ***/**** for me too.

  9. Thanks to Messinae and to Big Dave for the review and hint. Q uite enjoyed what I could do, but still needed 12 hints to finish.

  10. Extremely enjoyable from start to finish – 26a .
    Thanks very much to Messinae and BD .

  11. I found this fairly straightforward but couldn’t manage 26a without the hint, so thanks to BD for that and to setter for making me feel more clever than I am. 3/*3/*

  12. I also enjoyed this a good deal. Many lovely clues. Particularly liked 5a, 11a, 23a, 14d, 16d and 20d.

    I managed to finish this without recourse to the hints. I found the west half easier than the east. At one point I was apprehensive about being able to complete the puzzle, but then the penny dropped and the remainder fell into place.

    Being able to go through the review after completing the puzzle is invaluable. Despite having the correct answer, I needed an explanation for ‘Penny Lane’. The rest were all correctly parsed.

    My thanks and appreciation to Messinae and to Big Dave.

Comments are closed.