ST 2816 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2816

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2816

A full review by crypticsue

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

This puzzle was published on Sunday, 4th October 2015

This Sunday puzzle was almost but not quite a ‘start with the Downs’ but everything got sorted out in just over 2* time and a pleasurable time was had both solving the crossword and preparing the review. I especially liked 29a and 8d.

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


1a           Power up favourite tool (6)
PUPPET –   P (power) UP (from the clue) PET (favourite)

4a           Cream I ordered with an apple pie is quintessentially this (8)
AMERICAN –   As American as apple pie means quintessentially American – an anagram (ordered) of CREAM I followed by AN (from the clue).

10a         Bring debts upon oneself, without interest (9)
INCURIOUS –   INCUR  IOUS (Bring debts upon oneself).

11a         Noise, note, produced by little pig (5)
GRUNT –   G (musical note) RUNT (littlest pig in a litter).

12a         Starts off on board to attend to watch (7)
OBSERVE –   the ‘starts’ of On and Board followed by SERVE (attend to).

13a         Run a little bit in tough competition (3,4)
RAT RACE –   R (run) A (from the clue) TRACE (little bit).

14a         Going West, East, North or South to flee with partner (5)
ELOPE –   “going west” indicates the need to reverse the abbreviation for East and POLE (North or South).

15a         Bound to cover injuries as players matured (8)
BANDAGED –   BAND (players) AGED (matured).

18a         Crazy and miserable situation that Brazil is in (8)
NUTSHELL – NUTS (crazy) HELL (miserable situation)

20a         Another snake mangled boa constrictor’s head and tail (5)
COBRA –   An anagram (mangled) of BOA and C R (the head and tail of constrictor).

23a         Hearing organ one of gospel quartet set aside (7)
EARMARK –   EAR (hearing organ) MARK (one of the four (quartet)  New Testament Gospels).

25a         Spoilt brat ain’t educated? Not entirely (7)
TAINTED –   Hidden in part of (not entirely) braT AINT EDucated

26a         Was Dickens taken aback? (5)
LIVED –   The capital D in Dickens  is intended to mislead as all you need is a  reversal of DEVIL as in ‘what the dickens’/’what the devil’!

27a         Part of what one mentions is reparation (9)
ATONEMENT –   Hidden in part of whAT ONE MENTions.

28a         It’s included before end of term for joyful excitement (8)
HILARITY –   IT (from the clue) is inserted just before the ‘end’ or last letter of HILARY (the spring term at Oxford and Dublin Universities).

29a         Tight and painful, in a way? Said differently (6)
STINGY –   Depending on how you say STINGY, it can be defined as either tight/mean or painful in a sharp, stinging way.


1d           Captured soldier or sniper maltreated (8)
PRISONER –   An anagram (maltreated) of OR SNIPER.

2d           Informally photograph as accordingly famous artist (7)
PICASSO – PIC (informal term for a photograph) AS (from the clue) SO (accordingly).

3d           Perfect English kings hiding nothing? Not so (9)
ERRORLESS – E (English) R R (two lots of Rex (king) O (nothing) R (another king) and LESS (not so).

5d           Failure in interpreting poorly isn’t a mortal sin (14)
MISTRANSLATION –   An anagram (poorly) of ISNT A MORTAL SIN.

6d           Kind of punch, as opposed to port, on aeroplane (5)
RIGHT –   A kind of boxing punch, easy once you remember that port is on the left side of an aeroplane.

7d           Bravery shown by Conservative, like peers we have (7)
COURAGE – C (Conservative) OUR AGE (like peers we have).

8d           Lower number upset that womanname different kind of number (6)
NETHER –   Both parts of the wordplay lead to the same solution.   Reverse (upset in a Down clue) the number TEN and follow with HER (that woman) or alternatively, N (name) and ETHER (this ‘number’ being an anaesthetic).

9d           Round-table discussions in morning might collapse quickly (5,9)
POWER BREAKFAST –   POWER (might) BREAK  FAST (collapse quickly).

16d         Wren, for instance, seen in the Arctic, unusually (9)
ARCHITECT –   Not a bird but the famous ARCHITECT, an anagram (unusually) of THE ARCTIC.

17d         Bishop and I attempt to end gang activity (8)
BANDITRY –   B (bishop) AND I (from the clue) with TRY (attempt) at the end.

19d         Straighten out Frenchman’s article on musical compatriot (7)
UNRAVEL – UN (the French indefinite article) and RAVEL (the composer being a Frenchman, hence musical compatriot).

21d         Bird pecked another bird (7)
BITTERN –   BIT (pecked) TERN (another bird)

22d         Riches produced by breaking the law (6)
WEALTH –   An anagram (breaking) of THE LAW.

24d         Female removed from ash, elder, or other tree (5)
ALDER –   Remove SHE (female) from Ash eLDER.



3 comments on “ST 2816

  1. This was yet another delight from the Sunday supremo – thanks to him and CS. Difficult to separate in the photo-finish were 8d and 16d.

  2. Loved this Virgilius masterpiece and thanks to CS for her round-up. Favourite had to be 28a, no prizes for guessing that.

  3. Thanks for the review, CS. I always enjoy the Virgilius puzzles and this was no exception.

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