ST 2836 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2836 (Hints)

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2836 (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 as “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    A healthy exercise, in accordance with principles of state (14)
Two definitions – the first being a walk for the benefit of one’s health

9a    Male is discarded, in part inappropriately (7)
M(ale) and IS followed by a verb meaning discarded gives an adjective meaning in the wrong part in a play

10a Clear bishop completely in court action (7)
Alternative version: Clear everyone over time in court action
A 3-letter word meaning clear (of deductions), the chess notation for Bishop and a word meaning completely – and the court in which the action appears is not a “hall of justice”
Alternative version: the first part: clear (of deductions) and everyone are OK but to have them around (over) time doesn’t work – I see another apology on its way!

15a    Bearing a load we had crew put inside (8)
The abbreviated form of “we had” around the crew of a particular type of rowing boat (the one used in the Boat Race)

17a    Run away from dog after attack (4,4)
A verb meaning to dog or follow preceded by an attack or fit of illness

22a    Female in a company with musical backing? That’s right (11)
F(emale) inside the A from the clue and a four-letter company or business followed by the reversal of a famous musical

24a    Limited flow in river accommodated by fish, in a way (7)
R(iver) inside (accommodated by) one way to fish

26a    Handlers of football teams answer with whoppers after game (7)
A(nswer) and some whoppers or untruths preceded by (after) a two-letter board game

27a    With which some Asians cover bulb for garden plant (7,7)
While this could be what these Asians use to cover a light bulb it’s usually a candle – one of my childhood favourite garden plants that my father used to grow


1d    Tory PM’s main cut upset his extreme opponents (9,5)
An anagram (upset) of TORY PM’S MAIN CUT

2d    Obtains inside information set up for savings (4,3)
A four-letter verb meaning obtains inside some information, all reversed (set up in a down clue)

3d    He orchestrates tributes to rebuilt team’s star (11)
TO from the clue followed by an anagram (rebuilt) of team’s star

5d    Piece of music I put in frantic tempo (4,4)
Put the full number represented by I in Roman numerals inside an anagram (frantic) of TEMPO

ARVE Error: need id and provider

6d    Public mouthpiece? (3)
… this one is lurking, -piece, inside the clue

13d    Trickery from cricket side remained out of order (11)
A side of the cricket pitch followed by an anagram (out of order) of REMAINED

18d    Service with angle that’s somewhat disreputable (7)
Alternative version: Somewhat disreputable service attached to school (7)
A three-letter military service followed by a verb meaning to angle with rod and line
Alternative version: A three-letter military service followed by the aquatic creatures that are known collectively as a school

21d    Watch over writing, say, for old poet (6)
A watch or period of keeping awake during the time usually spent asleep around how wRiting is represented in a common phrase

25d    Not altogether cordial relations (3)
Most of an adjective meaning cordial or good-hearted

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Today it’s Happy Birthday to Kelsey Grammer (61)

47 comments on “ST 2836 (Hints)

  1. 2*/4*. Yet another in a seemingly never-ending line of Sunday masterpieces. 5d was new to me, and 21d was my last one in and favourite. Many thanks to Virgilius and to BD.

  2. Glad to see that RD owned up first – I was ashamed to admit that 21d was my last one in! Not entirely sure whether 5d was new or simply forgotten.
    Plenty of contenders for favourite, as always with a Sunday puzzle.
    Many thanks to Virgilius and also to BD – particularly for the musical accompaniment to 5d.

  3. 22 across was my gold medallist in this excellent Virgilius puzzle. I echo RD above in my admiration for this most elegant of setters. 20 down my last entry for no good reason other than one has to be last.

    Many thanks to Virgilius for his latest high quality Sunday offering and to BD.

  4. Great stuff as usual. 5d also new to me but the clueing made it “had to be so”.

    26a and 27a very amusing. But if I have to pick a favourite it goes to 4d, for assuming the oblique reference to a trade item was intentional (I actually have one) I thought it very clever for a simple clue.

    Overall **/****

    Thanks to Virgilius, once again, and to BD.

  5. After steady rather than spectacular progress yesterday I got on a roll with this one today only to struggle somewhat with the NE corner. My limited knowledge of classical music probably hindered me. 13d was a nice reminder of of a long forgotten word.
    Thanks for the hints BD and now that Joe Root is out in SA I think my dog is demanding that we go for a good 1a on the beach?

  6. Thank you Virgilius and BD for yet another masterpiece of bliss for a dingy Sunday morning. 5d loved the music one of my favourite musical genre particularly this composer. Nearly made comment about 8d which would have definitely landed me on naughty step. Off to dish up lunch enjoy rest of weekend.

  7. I was very glad that the plant in 27a and the old poet were quite easy to get as I am always a bit cagey when it comes to GK. 8d came naturally too.
    Thanks to Virgilius for the usual Sunday pleasure and to BD for the blog.

  8. Thoroughly enjoyable, as usual from our Sunday setter. A toss up between the cleverly disguised 6D and 27A, so I’ll go with both. Thanks Virgilius, and thanks to BD for the review.

    P.S. Either I’m dreaming or today’s Quickie is a reprint of last week’s puzzle.

  9. Nice to see that the “greatest of Roman Poets” gets a mention from the “greatest of Sunday compilers”.

    Always the best puzzle of the week!

    Thanks to Mr Greer!

  10. Can’t really believe I made it almost unaided as first impressions were somewhat daunting but softly softly catchee monkey paid off and olé. Only 10a and the lurker in 6d escaped me. Thanks Virgilius for classy exercise and BD for Zarasthustra amongst other things. ****/****. :good:

    1. Have you seen this – it’s in Wikipedia so it must be true :wink: :wink:

      “In April 1945, Strauss was apprehended by American soldiers at his Garmisch estate. As he descended the staircase he announced to Lieutenant Milton Weiss of the U.S. Army, “I am Richard Strauss, the composer of Rosenkavalier and Salome.” Lt. Weiss, who was also a musician, nodded in recognition. An “Off Limits” sign was subsequently placed on the lawn to protect Strauss. The American oboist John de Lancie, who knew Strauss’s orchestral writing for oboe thoroughly, was in the army unit, and asked Strauss to compose an oboe concerto. Initially dismissive of the idea, Strauss completed this late work, his Oboe Concerto, before the end of the year.”

      1. Fascinating story. I also see that Richard Strauss wanted de Lancie (Assistant Principal Oboist with Philadelphia Orchestra) to play the première of the Oboe Concerto in Zürich in 1946 but the French Principal Oboist refused to grant that honour in spite of de Lancie’s rôle in instigating the work. :???:

    2. Way back in the dark ages, when I was planning my wedding, I very much wanted the opening of Zarathustra to be the music for my walk down the aisle. The church organist doubted that he could comply!

  11. Thanks to Virgilius and to Big Dave for the hints. Trust me not to get 21d, doh. Brilliant entertainment as usual. Favourite was 26a. Was 2*/4* for me.

  12. Very enjoyable tussle.
    Beaten by a lurker!
    Could kick myself.
    Many thanks Virgilius and BD for the review.

  13. Wotta super puzzle again! I didn’t know 5d but, as usual with Virgilius’s puzzles, easy enough to work out.
    There were so many clues that I loved, a fave poet, fave plant and fave game!
    Thanks to Virgilius and to BD for his hints and, in particular, the music at 5d.

    Guess what? My name and email address have disappeared after making a brief reappearance. That’s life!

    1. Can you or BD (from his father’s experience) tell me how to grow Physalis well? Does it cope with hot sun (tropical)? Is it the same as kumquat?

      1. I don’t think you can grow it where you are, I believe in Antigua or like climate. We could never grow it in Jamaica and I’ve never seen it here in Miami. I had friends in Somerset who had a magnificent bush, bloomed in autumn I think. Try Japanese hat, or Chinese hat as they call it here, it does well and is like a waterfall of colour in my garden right now.

  14. I didn’t finish the crossword today but I really appreciated the music to 5d, I listened to the end.

  15. I finished it, but I’m really not sure of my answer to 10a. I have a letter in the answer that doesn’t really make sense. As this is a prize puzzle I think I shall just have to admit that I shall be very unlikely to win this week…. Oh well.
    Thanks to Virgilius for another great challenge and thanks to BD for the hints.

      1. Your comment needed moderation because you got a letter of your email address wrong – I’ve corrected it for you.

    1. It’s late in the day and I guess nobody is watching – so, if you just break down the first three words, it will give you the answer.

      1. I’m watching! :cool:

        As Wahoo says, it’s a simple charade of a 3-letter word meaning clear (of deductions), the chess notation for Bishop and a word meaning completely – and the court is not a “hall of justice”.

        1. Sorry boss. Maybe time to go for a pint? Sadly, all I can do is go down to the beach for a little rum punch! :cool:

        2. Still confused here. I have the answer alright but do you mind saying why “time” is “[b]ishop” ?


            1. I was just putting my answers in the misery app to submit them and noticed a couple of the clues are different there:

              10a Clear everyone over time in court action
              18d Somewhat disreputable service attached to school

              18d is merely not as good, but surely 10a is plain wrong?

              1. Well spotted, Kitty!

                I’ve just upgraded to Windows 10 …. pleased that I can still hear you!


                1. BD, the clues in the paper are identical to those in your original hints.

                  I think Kitty is referring to a different electronic version. :wacko:

  16. Too difficult for me but a very good crossword.
    Thanks to the setter and to BD for the hints.

  17. Mmmm! I took a hard copy to bed with me last night, and very nice it was too. I was listening to music and skyping at the same time which slowed me right down and prolonged the pleasure.

    I didn’t know that 27a was a plant too, but it had to be. For some strange reason I couldn’t see 21d (even though the answer did occur to me). When I woke up it hit me clear as day.

    Many thanks to Virgilius and BD.

    1. I cant get 21d, the hint does not seem to help either, What’s with the ‘R’ in writing, is that a typo. Have all the checkers but can’t find a word to go in there.

  18. ***/****. Another enjoyable solve. 5d needed mr google’s help. Favourites were 12a & 13d. Thanks to the setter and DT for the review.

  19. ** for difficulty, ***** for enjoyment. Last in 3d and 5d, which were among the easier clues in retrospect. It’s been a long weekend…

  20. In 10a, surely it’s a synonym of clear as in profit, followed by the bishop, followed by completely. And the poet in 8d: I’ve never seen him without his middle “name”.

  21. Unfortunately we were working from the version of 10a that doesn’t work. Still enjoyed it a lot. Thought the pick of the bunch was 6d – a little gem.

    When the online and paper editions have different clues, we assume they both come from the same setter. Is this true, and why would a clue be changed after submission in any case?

    Thanks BD for the blog and Virgilius for the puzzle.

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