Toughie 1463 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 1463

Toughie No 1463 by Kcit

A piece of cake

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Another fairly easy puzzle from Kcit that would be much better suited to the back-page slot.

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1a    Company colleague blocked by penny-pincher — show sympathy (11)
COMMISERATE: CO(mpany) and a colleague around a penny-pincher like Scrooge

9a    Swimsuit showing letters and large number (7)
MAILLOT: this one-piece close-fitting swimsuit is a charade of some letters or post and a large number

10a    About to receive inspiration when going over CV (6)
RÉSUMÉ: the two-letter word meaning about around (to receive) the reversal (when going over) of an inspiration like Calliope, Clio, Erato, Euterpe, Melpomene, Polyhymnia, Terpsichore, Thalia, or Urania

12a    Come across several performances — very keen on following them (3,4)
RUN INTO: several performances of a show followed by a preposition meaning very keen on

13a    Snoop capturing one blemish in school (7)
PRIMARY: a verb meaning to snoop around (capturing) I (one) and a verb meaning to blemish

14a    Chamber group’s core instrument (5)
CELLO: a chamber or cubicle followed by the middle letter (core) of [gr]O[up]

15a    Fashionable company attempt to keep fool’s name unknown (9)
INCOGNITO: the two-letter word for fashionable or current followed by CO(mpany) and an attempt, the latter around a fool

17a    I will follow argument about good mix of ingredients for the food (9)
SPAGHETTI: the I from the clue follows an argument, with the latter around G(ood) and an anagram (mix of ingredients) of THE

20a    Patch left from discoloration (5)
BOTCH: this verb meaning to patch make a mess of is derived by dropping (from) the L(eft) from an irregular discoloration

22a    An unspecified number giving support to politician in international body (7)
UMPTEEN: a support for a golf ball is preceded by our usual politician and then all inserted into an international peacekeeping body

24a    British author to tell stories about King and knight (7)
TOLKIEN: the TO from the clue and a three-letter verb meaning to tell stories around K(ing) and then finally the chess notation for knight

25a    Not supporting wicked chat (6)
CONFAB: A word meaning not supporting or against followed by an adjective meaning wicked or excellent

26a    Resentful and unscrupulous, seizing note daughter dropped (7)
ENVIOUS: start with an adjective meaning unscrupulous, insert (seizing) N(ote) and then drop the initial D(aughter)

27a    Sucker’s drawn to this by a regular’s fooling (6,5)
BARLEY SUGAR: an anagram (fooling) of BY A REGULAR’S


2d    American resort region occupying golden ring (7)
ORLANDO: a region or territory inside (occupying) the heraldic term for golden and the letter shaped like a ring

3d    Religious follower encountered lots of people around day one (9)
METHODIST: a three-letter verb meaning encountered and lots of people around D(ay) and I (one)

4d    Sweet stuff, surely without content, and not entirely wholesome on reflection (5)
SYRUP: S[urel]Y without its inner letters (content) followed by the reversal (on reflection) of most of (not entirely) an adjective meaning wholesome or virtuous

5d    French is adopted by group not in a show? (7)
RESTING: the French for “is” inside (adopted by) a group gives an adjective describing an actor who is not currently in a show

6d    A good deal alarmed about hollow drums (7)
TIMPANI: most (a good deal) of an adjective meaning inclined to fear or alarm around a hollow in the ground in which water collects in the rainy season, leaving a salt deposit on evaporation

7d    Sports event for everyone to see in remarkable camera pics (8,3)
AMERICA’S CUP: the letter denoting that a film is suitable for everyone to see inside an anagram (remarkable) of remarkable CAMERA PICS

8d    Free up new length to secure daughter’s skirt (6)
DIRNDL: the reversal (up in a down clue) of a verb meaning to free or purge followed by N(ew) and L(ength) around D(aughter)

11d    One’s measures are derived from wood (axes cut this on being swung) (11)
XYLOPHONIST: This person who uses an instrument to measure the elastic properties of wood (yes, I thought he played a musical instrument!) is derived from the axes on a graph, a verb meaning to cut and an anagram (being swung) of THISON

16d    Alcohol money mostly to pay for university (9)
COINTREAU: some money followed by most of a verb meaning to pay for and U(niversity)

18d    A measure of speed or a measure of liquid (7)
AMPHORA: the A from the clue followed by an abbreviation a measure of speed, the OR and A from the clue

19d    That chap haplessly led around following United should be paying attention (7)
HEEDFUL: The third person masculine pronoun (that chap) followed by an anagram (haplessly) of LED around F(ollowing) and U(nited)

20d    Country‘s reduced propensity to consume a lot of fruit (7)
BOLIVIA: most (reduced) of a propensity or tendency around most (a lot) of a Mediterranean fruit

21d    Stand up to perform after stumble (6)
TRIPOD: the reversal (up in a down clue) of a two-letter verb meaning to perform preceded by a stumble

23d    Impressively turned on by embracing lady at the outset (5)
NOBLY: The reversal (turned) of ON then BY around (embracing) the initial letter (at the outset) of L[ady]

Bufo should be back here next week.

29 comments on “Toughie 1463

  1. Impossible to get 11d.
    Even though I understood the parsing, I just couldn’t see which word would fit the def.
    Another unlikely one was 8d for which I had to google.
    Great surface all round.
    Thanks to Kcit and BD for the review.

  2. An enjoyable way to pass the early afternoon in sunny Shropshire I thought. Some really well-constructed clues with a lot of laughs although I did think 25a had an ‘L’ in it (such a long time since I’ve heard the term). 11a was my last one in and I was trying so hard to make ‘hypothenuse’ fit – so eventually had to resort to some electronic help, D’oh!

    I think I’ll go with 22a as my favourite.

    Thanks to Kcit for the puzzle and to BD for the review and parsing of 11d.

    1. That’s a relief, SL – thought I was going to be the only one constructing triangles at 11d! Actually, with a bit of effort, the parsing was ALMOST there.

  3. Ho hum – now I understand why I couldn’t parse my answer for 11d – hypothenuse.
    9a was a new word for me and I always forget about that particular hollow in the ground at 6d so came a little unstuck with the parsing for that one.
    Also, briefly flirted with hobnob for 25a!

    Many thanks to Kcit – enjoyed this one – and to BD for the review. I just knew you’d say it was easy.

    1. Never flirt with a hobnob – especially a chocolate one- just eat it! (Sorry but I couldn’t resist).

      1. Haven’t seen the choc. ones about for years – must investigate!
        By the way, did you know that the manufacturers say that the chocolate is at the BOTTOM – silly people.

          1. Thanks for that reminder, Spindrift – wonderful stuff!
            Only beaten by his depiction of people dancing at wedding receptions.

            1. …which would have been me & our kid (55yrs old) at my son’s wedding the other week. I cringe when I think about it but it’s marvellous what one does after a few sherbets!

  4. I was enjoying this, especially not having to use a dictionary, until i got to my last two in: 25a (not supporting wicked chat) and the already famous 11d. I could parse them (axes!!) but didn’t understand the definition for 11d, it seemed a pretty weird way to describe a musician. Thanks Big Dave for highlighting the second definition, which is right there in brb. Thanks also for the parsing of 6d.

    I enjoyed the semi-all-in-one nature of 14a, but that assumes this instrument is the core of a string quartet, which may not be what people think. I guess 4d also has a semi-all-in-one flavour.

    Also like 18d ( a measure of speed..) and 27a (Sucker’s..)

    Thanks BD and Kcit

  5. Why do I still fail to understand 6d? More help required, please!

    Most probably because I spelt it with a “Y”? Hmmm?

  6. Less Toughie more back page. Enjoyable nonetheless.

    Had to double check 8d . 11d was a different matter altogether. I bunged it in then couldn’t figure out why. Cheers BD!

    Liked 22a, favourite is the lovely 14a.

    Many thanks to Kcit and to BD for blogging.

  7. So Kcit’s lovely puzzle was really a misfiled backpager. No wonder I could do it.
    My favourite is 22a and I also liked 18d,5d, 15a and many others.
    With thanks to BD and Kcit.

  8. We enjoyed this muchly – thanks Kcit – and considered it more stretching than a back pager – except we’ve been having trouble with our backlog of those lately – not to mention the pile of nearly finished toughies which we refuse to give up on. Re 11d, given the various musical meanings of the word ‘measure’ we were quite happy with our answer being a musician.

  9. I was in the hypothenuse camp too. Thought “axes” as in X and Y might have something to do with it! Otherwise fairly straightforward with admiration for any setter who can clue 17a elegantly.

    Thanks to Kcit and BD.

      1. I agree but who cares – the Italians don’t! You just need to make sure that you’re not wearing a white T shirt at the time . . . they lose their appeal when splattered with tomato sauce – oh dear!

  10. It was not until I realised that axes were not cutting tools that I started to make any sense of 11d. At the time I did not see the answer as anything but a musician so a new piece of trivia to be filed away. This was the only clue which caused much delay in what was a pretty straightforward but enjoyable solve.
    Thanks Kcit and BD.

  11. A bit off the pace today (a breezy day afloat followed by a couple of much-needed bottles of Tribute!) so l didn’t find this particularly easy. 3*/3*, l think. 22d was my pick of the clues, but l still don’t get 11d! Thanks to Kcit, and to BD.

  12. Well I didn’t find this a piece of cake at all – maybe the little grey cells have had enough for today.
    I failed completely with 11d and still don’t really understand it – my problem – just being dim – will read the hint again tomorrow.
    I also failed to get 16d and that really was just me being dim.
    I did get 18d but I thought it was a container so why is it a measure of liquid? Oh dear, again.
    I did get, but didn’t know before, 9a – one to put into the memory, such as it is.
    I enjoyed this one – I liked 17 and 27a. My favourite was the hobnob that wasn’t but, like Shropshirelad, I thought it had an L in it.
    Thanks to Kcit and to BD for all the hard work.

  13. We are late in again (having finished it after a trip to the cinema to see the Kray film, Legend – v disappointing) ….but didn’t find it too tricky although 11d was a bung-in and only found out that it was right after consulting the blog. We really enjoyed this puzzle so thanks to Kcit and to Big Dave for the hints. Always a pleasure to finish the Toughie.

  14. Good Morning from Wiltshire. I’m going to be a day or so late for the next couple of weeks, I expect. Anyway, despite far too little sleep, and probably too many celebratory libations last evening, I still completed this one without recourse to the internet. Took some thought, though. I thoroughly enjoyed it, but it’s strange to be solving a newspaper version again. Thanks Kcit and BD.

  15. I was quite happy using the more usual meaning for 11d, since, in musical terms, ‘measure’ is a synonym for ‘bar’.

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