ST 2852 (Hints)

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2852 (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.

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    Professional model, the toast of Berlin (6)
PRO(fessional) followed by a verb meaning to model or pose

4a    European surrounded by throng was exultant (6)
E(uropean) inside (surrounded by) a throng or multitude gives a verb meaning was exultant

11a    Very easy clue, for example, provided in good time (4)
Our usual preposition meaning provided inside G(ood) and T(ime)

13a    New money to encourage specialist in theatre (12)
… this theatre can be found in a hospital

16a    Military establishment at Waterloo, say, with everyone inside (12)
A phrase meaning at a place of which waterloo is an example (2,7) around a word meaning everyone

21a    It’s engaged setter and solver in past (4)
In Crosswordland the setter can be I and the solver can be you, so put the pronoun which represents both inside a preposition meaning past or beyond

22a    Break through, with knight or bishop, say, capturing rook or queen (6)
A five-letter word for a chessman like a knight or bishop around (capturing) the abbreviation that can represent a rook or queen

23a    Rescue craft with no shortage of mates (5,3)
A cryptic definition of our usual rescue craft, whose passengers where in pairs (mates)

25a    Some may come late to this meeting, possibly creating a scene (6)
This meeting at which the late or recently deceased allegedly turn up is an anagram (creating) of A SCENE


1d    Careless about energy and power to begin with in building (8)
An adjective meaning careless around E(nergy) and preceded by (to begin with) P(ower)

3d    Knock pub sign askew (7)
A “knock” in cricket comes from a pub followed by an anagram (askew) of SIGN

5d    Determination of tragic lovers, what Romeo and Juliet have in common (7)
An anagram (tragic) of LOVERS followed by the letter that is common to Romeo and Juliet

9d    African imprisoning sailor who’s opposed to oppressive government? (11)
A native of a particular African country around (imprisoning) our usual three-letter sailor

14d    Buttress supporting church — it’s under control (9)
This verb meaning to buttress comes from a word meaning supporting followed by the Church of England and preceded by (it’s under) a noun, or verb, meaning control

15d    Study to be a fighter, and keep in good shape (8)
A verb meaning to study followed by a verb meaning to be a fighter in the armed forces

17d    Realise achievement you see replicated, we hear, in offspring (7)
The letter that sounds like (we hear) you followed by the letters that sounds like C and the same letter again (replicated) inside a word meaning offspring

19d    Great intelligence information on one world power, initially (6)
Some information followed by I (one) and the abbreviation (initially) of the country regarded as a world power

21d    Vessel in dock (5)
Two definitions – a vessel or container used for preparing food and an enclosed area of water where boats can be moored

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  Today I have something a bit different for you – The Twang’s the Thang with Duane Eddy  


  1. Posted June 12, 2016 at 11:29 am | Permalink | Reply

    Another lovely Sunday puzzle. As usual it’s hard to single out a sensible number of clues, but I will do it anyway:

    11a was, and I liked 20a, 21a, 6d and 17d. If I had to choose a favourite I would be happy enough with any of those and would probably take one of the acrosses. The 3d definition required a check.

    Many thanks to Virgilius and BD.

  2. Rabbit Dave
    Posted June 12, 2016 at 11:42 am | Permalink | Reply

    [ack. to Kitty]
    Another lovely Sunday puzzle. As usual it’s hard to single out a sensible number of clues, but I will do it anyway:

    11a was, and I liked 21a, 22a, 23a, 24a and 5d. If I had to choose a favourite I would be happy enough with any of those but would probably take 5d. I did not need to check the 3d definition.

    Many thanks to Virgilius and BD.

    • ShropshireLad
      Posted June 12, 2016 at 2:39 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Just for you RD

      ‘I’m fussy, angry and in a bad mood’ (6)

      Right, off to the naughty step for me :whistle:

      • Rabbit Dave
        Posted June 12, 2016 at 3:03 pm | Permalink | Reply

        Thank you, SL. It’s nice to have my very own clue. :smile:

        As it happens, I am in a bit of a bad mood this afternoon as I have no chance of a 3d today due to the foul weather.

  3. Young Salopian
    Posted June 12, 2016 at 12:15 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Not a bad way to spend part of a somewhat damp and dreary Sunday morning. 5 and 6 down my co-favourites from this elegant and enjoyable Virgilius offering. The SE corner held me up for a while, but otherwise fairly plain sailing.

    Many thanks as always to the Sunday maestro and BD. 2.5*\4*.

    • Stone Lee
      Posted June 12, 2016 at 12:35 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Couldn’t agree more with your first sentence. Thought you might have had 3d as a favourite – was one of mine. Like you I struggled with the SE corner – needed a hint or two from BD. Thanks to Virgilius and BD.

      • Young Salopian
        Posted June 12, 2016 at 12:50 pm | Permalink | Reply

        I get your drift. I confess I spent too long thinking it was an anagram of pub sign at first.

  4. Expat Chris
    Posted June 12, 2016 at 1:07 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Held up for a bit on 21A, even though I was fairly confident I had 21D correct. I liked 6D and 25A the most today. Thanks Virgilius and BD.

    I wouldn’t mind getting some of your rain for my poor plants. We are in for another 91 F (32 C) day today, with no precipitation in sight until Thursday.

  5. Florence
    Posted June 12, 2016 at 2:27 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Delicious. Loved every bit of this one. How many favourites can I have? 3,5,6,9 and 19 down, 11,16, 23 and 24across. Pleasant way to spend time after Sunday lunch. 3D is probably my absolute favourite for obvious reasons to some but not others. Thank you BD for the review, although not needed today, but I do like looking at the pics, and checking. 19d reminds me of a ride in a certain theme park. Thank you too setter for a great puzzle. So much fun.

  6. Brian
    Posted June 12, 2016 at 2:53 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Dear me, that was tough! Even for a Sunday that took some real effort. Needed the hints for top left and bottom right but loved 23a which I thought was a brilliant clue. Even the anagrams were very difficult! Real sense of satisfaction to complete it albeit taking two sittings.
    Thx to all

  7. Hilary
    Posted June 12, 2016 at 3:37 pm | Permalink | Reply

    The word struggle springs to mind. Enormous amount of electronic help plus big thanks to BD for sorting one or two of my sillier sillies. Thanks to Virgilius, shall I have a rest or attempt GK from yesterday? Just started raining Suffolk.

  8. Merusa
    Posted June 12, 2016 at 3:46 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Another great puzzle today, the whole thing was my fave!
    I needed the hint for 1d, stupid, I know, as it’s so obvious when you have the answer.
    Like Chris, I was held up with 21a, and when I did get it, had no idea why.
    Thanks to Virgilius for the fun and to BD for help with 1d.

    Awful what has happened in Orlando, these tragedies never seem to end. I am now waiting for the NRA to make a statement that we need more guns, that if everyone in the club had been armed, then someone could have popped the gunman off before he could do any harm. Forgive the rant, but I can’t wait for someone to have the balls to try to suggest gun control before we are all annihilated.

  9. Vancouverbc
    Posted June 12, 2016 at 4:31 pm | Permalink | Reply

    ****/***. This was the toughest Sunday puzzle for a long time – at least for me. Very enjoyable though even though I needed lots of electronic help. As I’m a bit of Lego fan 13a was my favourite as it fell in to place as I read it. Thanks to the setter and BD. A contributor to this blog also sent me a picture of the golf course I used to play in England. It looked like a lake which is pretty strange on a moorland course. Stay dry everyone.

  10. Gwizz
    Posted June 12, 2016 at 5:05 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Yet another delightful offering from the great man! Thank you Virgilius.
    Lots of excellent clues; 21a was my fave. Very clever.
    3/4* overall.
    Thanks again, and also to BD for the hints.

  11. Kath
    Posted June 12, 2016 at 6:08 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I thought this one was good fun but quite difficult and was slow with some of the easier clues – don’t know why.
    I know I don’t know much about cricket but I’ve learnt some of the terms used from this blog – 3d is one I haven’t heard before – at least I don’t think I have.
    12a was obviously an anagram but I made a wrong assumption about the ending so took ages.
    I liked 23 and 25a. My favourite was 6d.
    With thanks to Virgilius and to BD.
    Beastly weather but garden has at least had a thorough watering which was much needed – very busy moles. :sad:

  12. Salty Dog
    Posted June 12, 2016 at 8:58 pm | Permalink | Reply

    After a couple of days without my usual source of mental exercise, I started this puzzle rather slowly. Once I had gained a foothold, however, it proved “doable”. My watch says it was 2* in difficulty, and my residual enjoyment level says 4* on that front. Contenders for favourite clue are 1a and 13a, and I marginally prefer the former. Thanks to Virgilius and DT.

  13. Jon_S
    Posted June 12, 2016 at 10:10 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Solved while at the tail end of the other half’s birthday celebrations, ie while suitably exhausted. So either I was sluggish tonight, or this was a little tricky. Looking back now at the ones I struggled with, I suspect the former. Thoroughly enjoyable as ever from Virgilius. :-)

  14. jean-luc cheval
    Posted June 12, 2016 at 11:53 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Had to watch the news before posting, having read Merusa’s comment.
    I do live a sheltered life in my little restaurant and spent all day there.
    Virgilius was on good form today or maybe it was me who was in good form to solve this extremely pleasant crossword.
    Thanks for the puzzle and to BD for the blog.

    • Hanni
      Posted June 12, 2016 at 11:57 pm | Permalink | Reply

      I couldn’t watch the whole news report…too sad. But I do like the avatar.

      • Merusa
        Posted June 13, 2016 at 12:02 am | Permalink | Reply

        Just popped in to see if any comments, and I agree, a most evocative avatar. Guns, how are these people allowed to get them.

        • ShropshireLad
          Posted June 13, 2016 at 12:23 am | Permalink | Reply

          I could tell you how, but this is not a forum to put forward my views on how easy it is to ‘shop’ for weapons in the US :cool:


          • Merusa
            Posted June 13, 2016 at 12:35 am | Permalink | Reply

            Oh, I can tell you how. The NRA owns the US, and people like me are so in the minority. I don’t think this will ever be solved, so expect more carnage.

  15. hoofityoudonkey
    Posted June 13, 2016 at 1:37 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Late on parade, so more of an exercise to learn as I rushed through this in my lunch hour via BD’s hints.
    Many thanks BD – top man, and to the setter, I though 13a was an excellent clue and my fav…
    Off to France early on Wednesday with tickets for Russia v Slovakia and England v Wales, just hope I can come back in one piece to do Friday’s crossword!!

  16. Graham
    Posted June 17, 2016 at 2:15 pm | Permalink | Reply

    After 5 days gave up and looked for the hints for 21a and 15d. Thanks to all on the blog for getting me this far.

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