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ST 2749

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2748

A full review by crypticsue

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BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment ****

This puzzle was published on Sunday, 22nd June 2014

The sun was shining, the sky was very blue and a lovely Virgilius puzzle to solve over breakfast – what more could anyone want?   So many great clues, even Kath allowed ‘joint favourites’!

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           Painter‘s canvas finally framed by old measure of length (6)
CUBIST –   Insert the last letter (finally) of canvaS into a CUBIT – an old measure of length I always associate with Noah’s Ark.

4a           In dunce’s cap, is mostly avoiding reality (8)
ESCAPISM is hidden in duncE S CAP IS Mostly.

10a         Real idiot transformed into leader, perhaps (9)
EDITORIAL – Known in newspaper land as a ‘leader’ – an anagram (transformed) of REAL IDIOT.

11a         With key, locks academic office (5)
CHAIR –   The musical key of C followed by HAIR (locks) – Someone awarded a Professorship is said to be given a CHAIR – originally it was the seat from which they gave their lectures.

12a         Trains and other transport (7)
COACHES –   Double definition – a verb meaning instructs (trains) or single-deck buses.

13a         Expressing    what follows a successful pitch (7)
PUTTING –   Expressing in words or hitting a golf ball towards a hole following a successful pitch – hitting the ball in such a way that it flies in a high arc and doesn’t roll much on landing, useful in the game of Pitch and Putt.

14a         Endlessly in a dire and extremely low position (5)
NADIR is obtained by removing the ends from iN ADIRe.

15a         Some dishonest lingo in flier not yet put out (8)
NESTLING –   A baby bird still in the nest (flier not yet put out) is hidden in some of dishoNEST LINGo.

18a         Cold Scandinavian city absorbing new cut (8)
CONDENSE – C (cold) followed by the Danish city of ODENSE into which is inserted N (new).

20a         Intelligent person‘s aberration, ignoring the odds (5)
BRAIN – the even (ignoring the odds)letters of aBeRrAtIoN.

23a         Quietly tell church dignitary (7)
PRELATE –   Time for an ‘old’ friend of the crossword setter/solver –   P (the musical instruction to play quietly) and RELATE (tell).

25a         Something one gets from father certainly holding chap back (7)
SURNAME –   SURE (certainly) with a reversal (back) of a MAN (chap) inserted.

26a         Over time, does, for example, discourage (5)
DETER –   DEER (does [female deer], for example) put around (over) Time.

27a         Circus performer twisted metal — iron (4-5)
LION TAMER is an anagram (twisted) of METAL IRON.

28a         Fan of John or George at various times, but never Ringo? (8)
ROYALIST –   Brilliant!!   Because there have been English kings called John or George but never one called Ringo!

29a         Awfully ribald, like one matchmaker? (6)
BRIDAL –   An anagram (awfully) of RIBALD.


1d           Concerned initially about smell in street (8)
CRESCENT –   C (concerned initially) RE (about) and SCENT (smell).

2d           Gang holding costume for robber (7)
BRIGAND –   A BAND (gang) holding RIG (costume).

3d           Son cared for by one parent, stifled (9)
SMOTHERED –   S (son) and MOTHERED (cared for by one parent).

5d           Composure left female on legal team in meeting (4-10)
SELF-POSSESSION –   Start with a SESSION (meeting) and insert L (left) F (female) and POSSE (legal ‘team’ :) )

6d           So, bit by bit, disrupting performance in English course (5)
ASCOT racecourse is obtained by inserting (disrupting), separately as indicated by the ‘bit by bit’ –  the S and O from SO into ACT (performance).

7d           Foreigner I arrested concealing article (7)
IRANIAN –   Insert A (indefinite article) into I RAN IN (I arrested).

8d           I am furious after medium produces illusion (6)
MIRAGE –   M (medium) followed by I RAGE (I am furious).

9d           Penetrating articles    as result of reduced circulation (4,3,7)
PINS AND NEEDLES – Another brilliant clue – this time a great double definition/d’oh moment.

16d         On hill, sign about European national hero (9)
LIBERATOR – Insert E (about European) into the zodiac sign of LIBRA and finish with a TOR (hill).

17d         Altering parts, rearranged to form whole (8)
INTEGRAL –   The ‘parts’ or letters of ALTERING are rearranged (such an obvious anagram indicator!) to form INTEGRAL.

19d         Excessively protecting Tory leader in public (7)
OVERTLY –   T, the leader of Tory, is inserted into or protected by, OVERLY (excessively).

21d         Flapping of wings over sea (7)
ALARMED –   An adjective meaning related to a wing – ALAR – followed by the abbreviation for the Mediterranean Sea.

22d         Web designer beginning to swell with false pride (6)
SPIDER –   And another candidate for ‘favourite clue’ –   S (the beginning to Swell) followed by an anagram (false) of PRIDE.

24d         March is followed by this pair getting into trouble (5)
APRIL –   PR (pair) inserted into AIL (trouble).

Thanks once again to Virgilius for providing the best puzzle of the week.   They are a joy to solve and when you get the pleasure of blogging one too, double the fun.   I have to let Gnomey have a go at the Sunday reviews for a couple of weeks but I’ll still have the fun of solving until my turn comes round again.

1 comment on “ST 2749

  1. Am very late commenting as I didn’t have much opportunity during the week, but I am thoroughly re-enjoying this Virgilius now.

    As ever, Crypticsue, your review is invaluable. I doubt that Kath would stretch to five favourites, but that’s what I had — 1a, 28a, 3d, 5d, 9d, and 22d. This may well have been an easier Virgilius, but I couldn’t do two of the clues (13a and 7d) and am indebted for the answers. All now beautifully clear.

    Thank you both, Virgilius and Crypticsue. Much appreciated.

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