ST 2799 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

ST 2799

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2799

A full review by gnomethang

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

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

This puzzle was published on Sunday, 7th June 2015

Morning All! THis was a tad trickier than the previous Sunday but included some lovely consistent surface readings.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.  You can also add your assessment by selecting from one to five best!


1a           Couples initiating these risky ventures prosper (6)
THRIVE – A nice observational; clue to start with. Use the opening (initiating) two letters (couples) in TH(ese) RI(sky ) VE(natures),

4a           Bogus record of what’s outstanding in London team (8)
SPURIOUS – One for Big Dave being a fan – Place IOUS (a record of what debts are outstanding) inside SPURS for Tottenham Hotspur.

10a         Period in which one’s not well off? (4,5)
SICK LEAVE – A cryptic definition for when you are OFF work and NOT WELL.

11a         As stated, raised money (5)
BREAD – A homophone (as stated) of BRED/raised.

12a         In tournament, miss shot from short range (5-2)
CLOSE UP – Place LOSE (miss) inside the CUP tournament. Very good surface reading.

13a         Scrutinise monarch, for example, holding power (7)
INSPECT – Place P for Power inside an INSECT – of which the monarch butterfly is an example.

14a         Pen article in French manner (5)
STYLE – A STY or pig pen followed by LE – a definite article in French.

15a         Protection from blame one put on rascal (8)
IMPUNITY – UNITY (one ) placed after (on in an across clue) an IMP or rascal.

18a         Herbaceous shrub in a container like that (8)
ACANTHUS – A charade of A CAN (a container) and THUS/like that.

20a         Drums played by Indians among Dakota Blackfoot (5)
TABLA – The regional drums are hidden in (among) DakoTA BLAckfoot.

23a         A ceremony run without bishop or judge (7)
ARBITER – Place A RITE (ceremony) and R for Run outside (without) B for Bishop.

25a         Whistle-blower interrupting work in plant (7)
TREFOIL – The REF(eree) is the whistle blower in a football game. Place him inside (interrupting) TOIL for work.

26a         A page expert assembled quickly (5)
APACE – A straightforward charade of A (from the clue), P for Page and ACE for expert.

27a         One being critical about nothing, maintaining detachment? (9)
ISOLATING – I for One and SLATING (being critical) around the outside of O for Nothing.

28a         Story from Dante Eco adapted (8)
ANECDOTE – An anagram (adapted) of DANTE ECO.

29a         Husband a number size up? (6)
HEIGHT – H for Husband followed by the number EIGHT.


1d           Cassette destroyed in important legal action (4,4)
TEST CASE – A destroyed anagram of CASSETTE and another nice consistent surface reading.

2d           Accommodation for minister is concerning key party member (7)
RECTORY – A charade of RE (concerning/reference), the musical key of C and a TORY party member.

3d           In eleven pieces, reassembled check fabric (9)
VELVETEEN – My last one in. VET for check inside an anagram (the pieces reassembled) of ELEVEN.

5d           Tendency Democrat is showing in part of speech (14)
PREDISPOSITION – D for Democrat and IS from the clue inside a PREPOSITION or part of speech.

6d           Part of bizarre business that’s puzzling (5)
REBUS – Hidden in (part of ) bizarRE BUSiness.

7d           Before boarding old vessel in gorge (7)
OVEREAT – The old word ERE for before inside O for old and a VAT for a vessel – O V(ERE)AT.

8d           Composed small note to girlfriend (6)
SEDATE – A charade of S for small, the musical key of E (this time) and then DATE for girlfriend.

9d           Keyboard player that’s right in this rhapsodic setting (14)
HARPSICHORDIST – Place R for Right inside an anagram (setting) of THIS RHAPSODIC.

16d         Sight in Paris left-wing area held by someone else? (5,4)
NOTRE DAME – This was quite cute!. Place RED (left wing) and A for Area inside NOT ME i.e. someone else.

17d         What goes between storeys, including a new kind of window (8)
FANLIGHT – A and N(ew) inside (included in) a FLIGHT (of stairs) i.e. what goes between two storeys of a building.

19d         Vegetable, all of whose parts are in scale (7)
CABBAGE – To continue the musical theme we have the CABBAGE which is the only vegetable I can think of represented solely by the musical keys (A – G).

21d         Show disrespect in court? Punishment for offending player (7)
BOOKING – To show disrespect in a royal court might cryptically mean to BOO the KING.

22d         Turn up a map that includes North America and you’ll find it (6)
PANAMA – reverse A MAP and add (include) NA for North America.

24d         Put foot down on trade moving east (5)
TREAD – Move the E for East in TRADE two spaces left.

Thanks to Virgilius for the excellent puzzle. I’ll be back tomorrow for a review of last Saturday’s prize puzzle.

5 comments on “ST 2799

  1. Lovely crossword – thanks to Mr G and Gnomey. There are loads of great clues with the outstanding one for me being 22d.

  2. Thought I’d add a comment – for two reasons:

    1. It might be a bit disheartening blogging Virgilius’s Sunday prize jobs because the embargo means you don’t get a lot of responses to your efforts;

    2. He’s a superb setter who always entertains, never sets dodgy clues and writes the best surfaces of all of them.

    As well as the sublime 22d that Gazza’s already mentioned 16d is lovely and 10a is as good a cryptic def as you’re ever going to see.

    Keep em coming maestro – and keep up the good work Gnomie.

  3. We echo Halcyon’s comments. Funnily enough, we were just thinking exactly the same thing about the Sunday blog! We always absolutely love Virgilius’s puzzles, the best of the week for us, and thanks you for the entertaining blog, Gnomethang.

  4. Thank you both Halcyon and Paso Doble – I do appreciate the feedback and you are entirely correct in your appreciation of the Sunday puzzle. It is a joy to solve but unfortunately I cannot always give the review the treatment it deserves and that is a failing of mine!
    ..and a thanks to Gazza who always leaves the comment and also keeps me (nicely!) on the straight and narrow!

  5. Even later comment! (I save up Sunday puzzles for when I really need a lift). Thanks for the review, I needed to have 7d explained although the answer was obvious. A wonderful puzzle as always from Virgilius, 21d my standout. Thanks to both you and the setter.

Comments are closed.