ST 2810 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2810 (Hints)

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2810 (Hints)

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, a number of the more difficult clues have been selected and hints provided 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 Angelic creature‘s unusual turn of phrase (6)
An anagram (unusual turn) of PHRASE

10a Criticise inside cover that’s not bound by social conventions (9)
A six-letter verb meaning to criticise inside a cover for a box or jar gives an adjective meaning not bound by social conventions

13a Ringleader in English resort tries hard (7)
The initial letter (leader) of R[ing] inside an English resort (2,4)

14a Heard pronouncement of so-called college and scoffed (5)

15a Blood group, in short, I have that’s aiding recovery (8)
A blood group inside an adjective meaning short and followed by the abbreviated form of I have gives an adjective meaning aiding recovery

23a Readable arrangement of lines, apart from chapter and verse (3,4)
A three-letter word meaning apart from followed by C(hapter) and a verse

26a Conviction when Ecstasy’s found in part of camp (5)
A conviction or belief is derived by putting E(cstasy) inside something that forms part of a camp

28a Portray as evil happening, surrounded by death (8)
A two-letter word meaning happening inside a word meaning death or passing

29a Work of art, say, placed outside university (6)
A verb meaning to say around (placed outside) U(niversity)


1d Males dispersed in various directions as travellers? (8)
An anagram (dispersed) of MALES inside some compass directions

3d Craziness of incendiary extremes in party leading EU country (9)
The outer letters of (extremes) in P[art]Y before (leading) an EU country

5d Daughter is framed by charge chosen at random (14)
D(aughter) and IS inside (framed by) a verb meaning to charge with an offence

8d Far from vigilant as unknown weapon turned up (6)
A mathematical unknown and a weapon, all reversed (turned up in a down clue)

17d Part of team game in which a couple of universities combine (8)
Part of a team used to pull a plough followed by a card game gives a word used to collectively refer to our two most prestigious universities

19d A friend appearing on motorway radar, for example (7)
The A from the clue followed by a colloquial word for a friend and M(otorway) – radar is an example of this type of word (and palindrome doesn’t fit!)

22d Became more moderate in a short time when retired? (6)
Start with the A from the clue and the abbreviation for T(ime) and then follow the instructions given by a phrase meaning retired for the night (2,1,3)

24d How marks may be given out a lot (5)
Split as (2,3) this describes how marks may be given out

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Today it’s Happy Birthday to Willy Russell (68)
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19 comments on “ST 2810 (Hints)

  1. Lovely puzzle – I particularly liked 6d.

    Thanks to Virgilius and BD

    That’s my crossword fun done for the day – now to make bramble jelly, ratatouille, tomato chutney and lemon drizzle cake (not for the NC but for work tomorrow).

    1. Wish I worked with you I adore lemon drizzle cake and because OH is diabetic we never have cake.

  2. Excellent puzzle that held me up in the lower half after breezing through the top half. Thanks to BD and Virgilius **/****

  3. Good puzzle which had me puzzling for ages, eventually got there. Lots of penny drops like 19d, 9d. Lots of favourites but 19d was best.

    Felt good when I finished it.

    Thanks to setter and BD


  4. All good fun today with 19d last in . Favourite was 13a which made me smile! Thanks to Virgilius and BD.

  5. Found the SW corner quite difficult but got there eventually.
    Great surface reading again and favourite is 12a.
    Thanks to Virgilius and to BD.
    Ps: Remember Blood Brothers. Willy Russell and Bill Kenwright. Go Everton go!

  6. 3*/5*. The SW corner of this excellent puzzle held me up the longest.

    I needed BD to explain the wordplay for my answers for 13a & 22d. I wrote the six letters for the resort in 13a at the top of my page and, even after staring at it for a long time, it simply never occurred to me to split it (2,4) – d’oh!.

    I could pick almost any clue to be my favourite, but I particularly liked 13a, 6d, 19d, 22d & 24d.

    Many thanks to Virgilius and to BD.

  7. Thanks to Virgilius and to Big Dave for the hints. A very enjoyable and exquisitely crafted puzzle as usual. I seemed to be on the right wavelength today, no major holdups. Favourite was 19d. Last in was 21d. Was 2*/4* for me.

  8. Very enjoyable. I liked 11a and 19d. I agree with Jean-Luc Cheval about 12a
    Thanks Virgilius and BD.

  9. Top puzzle from one of my favourite setters. Good to see our old friend 19d making a rare appearance. Too many good clues to be selective, so I will just mark it 3/4 with thanks all round. Still painting the outside of the house between rain showers…………the Forth Bridge may have been quicker.

  10. Lovely Sunday treat, slightly stuck in bottom left hand corner until a blinding flash brought 19d and all was revealed. 5d came to me as an inspired guess and proved to be right but the rest of it had to be gently teased out. As usual too many favourites to pick one (Kath’s rules apply) but for some twisted reason 28a and 13a amused me. Thanks to Virgilius and BD.

  11. Phew this took some solving but it was none the less enjoyable for that. Bottom left-hand corner was last to slot into place mainly due to trying to use wrong kinds of friend in 19d. I liked 13a, 7d and 24d. Thanks Virgilius and BD whom I just managed not to consult before completing. ****/***.

  12. I’ve had quite a bit of trouble with this one – I thought it was trickier than recent Sundays have been.
    I managed to miss the anagram indicators in 1a and 9d but did find the lurkers without too many problems.
    I liked 11 and 12a and 19 and 24d.
    With thanks to Virgilius and to BD.

  13. I, too, had a problem with the SW corner. I put the wrong second word in for 23a, I thought the answer was chapter and verse and bunged an answer in without thinking.
    There were so many clever and amusing clues, but I think 13a wins, how clever is that!
    Thanks to Virgilius and to Big Dave for his review.

  14. As usual, a nice test from the Sunday maestro. I made this one 2*/4* and like some others was held up a bit by the SW corner. Both of my contenders for favourite clue come from that corner – 19d and 23a. My thanks to Virgilius, and to BD.

  15. A less taxing crossword than we are used to on a Sunday but very enjoyable. Best one for me was 19d, clever I thought.
    Thx to all

  16. The elegance of Virgilius is, as always, very striking. Combined with simplicity this leads to great clues like 19 & 24d.

    Many thanks to my favourte setter,

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