ST 2755 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2755 (Hints)

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2755 (Hints)

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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Don’t forget there’s a very special prize for this month’s Prize puzzle.

As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, I will select a number of the more difficult clues and provide hints for them.

Don’t forget that you can give your assessment of the puzzle. Five stars if you thought it was great, one if you hated it, four, three or two if it was somewhere in between.

Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”. Where the hint describes a construct a “usual” this means that more help can be found in The Usual Suspects, which gives a number of the elements commonly used in the wordplay. Another useful page is Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing, which features words with meanings that are not always immediately obvious.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions.

Some hints follow:


1a    Motivate including piano in concert ahead of time (6)
Put P(iano) between a concert and T(ime)

4a    Fail to notice gallery, say, in error (8)
A four-letter verb meaning to fail to notice followed by a well-known London art gallery

10a    Opening words for meeting, such as his? (9)
… his being the plural of hi

14a    Period  charm (5)
A double definition – a period of time and a charm or bewitchment

18a    Want game for children in seaside area (8)
Put the three-letter name of a game for children inside a seaside area

26a    With difficulty, live in brick house (5)
A three-letter difficulty followed by a verb meaning to live

27a    They make flight safer as outlaw is cut short (9)
A three-letter verb meaning to outlaw followed by IS and most of (cut) an adjective meaning short or brief

29a    Rule that’s good concerning name (6)
G(ood) followed by a four-letter word meaning concerning and N(ame)


1d    Dog I record as boxer (8)
a three-letter word for a dog followed by the I from the clue and a verb meaning to record or catalogue

5d    Jailed Reginald wrongly for illegal financial activity (7,7)
An adjective meaning jailed or serving time followed by an anagram (wrongly) of REGINALD

6d    Workers going after queen — part of class war, maybe (5)
These workers who go after a queen bee are hidden (part of) inside the clue

7d    A lot of weapons are sent, all unfinished (7)
Drop the final letters from three words in the clue and then run them together

9d    Making sense, like an umbrella when it’s raining? (14)
It makes sense to use an umbrella when it is raining – and this sort of describes where you are when using it

17d    Abandon plane team leader’s aboard (8)
three-letter aeroplane followed by the initial letter (leader) of T[eam] and a phrase (2,2) meaning aboard

22d    Doctor has the cover for blade (6)
An anagram (doctor) of HAS THE

24d    Set up a time and place for sporting contest (5)
The indefinite article (2) followed by a long period of time, all reversed (set up in a down clue)

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Today it’s Happy Birthday to Tony Bennett (88)
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32 comments on “ST 2755 (Hints)

  1. Thank you Virgilius, another lovely puzzle. A game of two halves for me – or rather two sides. Finished the RHS first and then took a while to finish the LHS. Last in was 9d. I sort of knew that I had it right but couldn’t quite believe it ! As always, hard to get started, but once under way great fun. Thanks BD for the hints.

  2. 3*/4*. Superb as ever on a Sunday!

    Although I was able to complete this without help, I needed BD’s hint to explain the relevance of “such as his?” in 10a. 26a was a new word for me (despite being very familiar in an entirely different context).

    Lots of great clues, but my short list of superlatives is 10a, 11a, 5d & 9d.

    Many thanks to Virgilius and to BD.

  3. I think I’ll say 2* difficulty and 4* for enjoyment.
    I needed the hint to understand the his in 10a and was a bit slow with 13a and 7d – should have got that one more quickly as it’s such a trademark Virgilius clue.
    For once I didn’t have too much trouble with the hidden answers – found all three of them!
    I didn’t know the first definition in 28a although thinking about it again now I think I have probably met it before.
    I liked 14 and 27a and 5 and 16d. My favourite was 9d.
    With thanks to Virgilius and BD.
    Off to the garden now.

    1. PS The big scary red warning that jumps out and says “BOO” seems to be having a day off today.

      1. Not for me, I think it knows I’ve been in the naughty corner and is keeping an eye on me :eek:

        1. I know – he just jumped out at me again too. I think he thinks that surprise is the most effective policy and that if we all get too used to him we’ll ignore him and just go back to misbehaving again!

  4. Always my favourite day of the week and well up to standard. Probably a 2*/4* under normal conditions but last night’s cheeky Valpolicella added an extra 0.5 to the difficulty this morning! A nod to 7d and the hidden in plain sight first part of 10a but 9d is my pick of the day.

  5. Very enjoyable today. Took a while to get going, but, once started, we pretty well finished without help, except for one or two explanations. So it’s a **/*** for us. Thank you Mr. Setter and BD.

  6. Needed the hint for 18ac – was attempting to put something completely different in. But apart from that, found it fairly straightforward and definitely up to the usual high standard on Sunday. Thanks to BD and Virgilius 2.5*/4*

  7. Like others I found the right hand side easier and 28a was new.

    Liked lots, 11a is favourite.

    Thank you Virgillus and BD

    Don’t usually finish this until much later so have time to do other pursuits or just sit and stare

  8. We tried today’s upside down to provide that extra acetyl choline kick and as a Alzheimer remover! Reading the clues is much easier than writing.

    Mrs T also buttered the toast upside down…

    Anyway, v dna db ot skanhT

  9. Thoroughly enjoyable crossword today with some fairly straightforward clues to get you interested then some tricky ones to offer a challenge. Really liked 27a especially although I thought 29a a bit weak and contrived but that’s nit-picking.
    Thx to all.

  10. I have not visited crosswordland for a couple of days so this made for a very pleasant return. I needed a couple of nudges furnished by BD. My rating would be 2.5/4 A very pleasant prelude to opening a cheeky red and watching, yet again, Kenneth Branagh’s Henry V My thanks to Big Dave.

  11. The usual brilliant Sunday offering from Virgilius, loved it. I needed BD’s input to understand the “his” in 10a, nice giggle for that. Didn’t know the punch in 28a, a quick referral to the dictionary sorted that. Can’t pick a favourite, there are too many good ones. Thanks to Virgilius and to BD for the hints.

  12. A3*/4* for me. Like others the east side came easier than the west and the SW especially elusive until the cogs began to turn. 9d my favourite. Thanks to the setter and BD. My wife and I managed to feed the dogs twice at breakfast with little Sam looking very innocent and not so little now. Max is living up to his name.

  13. Very good puzzle and an enjoyable solve in the aircon in the loca over a couple of beers. Actually, it only lasted for one so we had to do yesterday’s as well

    **/**** from us.

    Thanks to Virgilius.

      1. Oh dear – how did that happen? I really only meant to say it once! However, on second thoughts . . .

        1. Large glasses warm up before they’re finished. Three small one’s always better than one large. Can’t stand warm beer.

  14. Another highly enjoyable Sunday puzzle.

    Unlike Pommers, enjoyed this one over a glass or two of wine, in the shade on the terrace but in 92 degrees sunshine. 1.5*/4* for me. 9d is almost like a kid’s joke – so that gets my vote as favourite!

    Thanks to Virgilius for your usual great blend of types of clue and BD of course.

      1. Thanks for asking. Actually, TS Bertha was quite disorganised as it passed through the Lesser Antilles – but we still got some, much needed rain – but not enough!

  15. Late input from me – I’ve been sitting in the sun and enjoying the view to St-Tropez across the Med!

    Faves : 11a, 26a. 28a, 5d, 6d, & 9d.

    Two more weeks and then we go back to Nederland.

  16. Does anyone know why the crossword is no longer accessible on the Ipad? I have written to the Daily Telegraph but have got no help.

    1. Welcome to the blog Hazel

      I am the very last person to ask about products made by Apple, but someone else may be able to help.

    2. Hello Hazel,

      Welcome to the blog. The iPad version of the crossword has been playing up for quite a while now and that might be why they’ve taken it away. We can only guess because the Telegraph is singularly absent and there is a distinct lack of communication as to what’s going on. Sorry I can’t help beyond that.

      I think someone cleverer than I had a suggestion for a workaround, I however need a noddy guide to understand such things at it was beyond me

  17. Quite gentle, but raised a few smiles. I suppose 2*/3* would be about right, and 9d my favourite. Thanks to Virgilius, and to BD for the hints.

  18. Thanks to Virgilius and to Big Dave for the hints. Another super puzzle. Favourite was 27a. Was 2* /3* for me.

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