ST 2851

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2851

A full review by gnomethang

This puzzle was published on 5th June 2016

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

Morning! This was a tremendously enjoyable puzzle in my opinion. The surface readings were so good an dmisleading that even the clues that were constructed in a straightforward way were difficult to spot.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought. You can also add your assessment by selecting from one to five stars at the bottom of the post.


7a           Absurd probe into salary for one who delivers (8)
PAPERBOY – Place an anagram (absurd) of PROBE inside PAY or salary.

9a           Drink outside pub put back, ready for ploughperson (6)
ARABLE – Ale for drink around a reversal (put back) of BAR/pub. The definition is land that is ready for a ploughperson.

10a         A learner comes after class, according to convention (6)
FORMAL – Simply A and L(earner) after FORM or class.

11a         Steer behind modified hot rod, following usual practice (8)
ORTHODOX – Place an OX or steer after an anagram (modified ) of HOT ROD.

12a         Kind of education that’s levelling out social differences? (7,7)
EVENING CLASSES – A charade of EVENING (levelling) and CLASSES or different social stations.

15a         Realise it can be perceived as negative by audience (4)
KNOW – A homophone (by the audience/ear) of NO for negative.

17a         Poet sharing food with Keats, but with different starter (5)
YEATS – EATS is a slang word for food. Take that bit of (k)EATS and add a different starter letter.

19a         Clue recurring in puzzle, a debatable addition (4)
LEAD – The answer is twice (recurring) hidden IN puzzLE A DebatabLE ADdition.

20a         Parent is, in part, changing requirement for sweater (14)
ANTIPERSPIRANT – An anagram (changing) of A PARENT IS IN PART. The surface reading makes it very difficult to spot.

23a         Misprints in American volume too unfinished (8)
LITERALS – A formal word for a misprint. Take a LITER (an American spelling for volume) and add all but the last letter in ALS(o) or ‘too’.

25a         Backed party about vote favouring university (6)
OXFORD – Reverse a DO or party (backed) around X for a vote (on a ballot paper) and FOR meaning favouring.

27a         Cut off energy — that’s hard to endure (6)
SEVERE – A nice easy one – SEVER for cut off and E for energy.

28a         Unusually alert in court battle (8)
WATERLOO – The court here is not the usual abbreviation CT but WOO. Make an unusual anagram of ALERT and place inside.


1d           Brilliant disc for John, Paul, or George, perhaps (4)
HALO – A lovely clue. John, Paul and George are all saints (as well as members of the Beatles, hence the musical surface reading). The disc in question is not a record!.

2d           They never oppose head of state in part of Middle East (3-3)
YES-MEN – place the head letter of S(tate) inside the YEMEN (part of the Middle East.

3d           Beginner from county losing couple of points, finally (4)
TYRO – Remove N(orth) and E(ast), a couple of compass points, from County TYRO(ne).

4d           Aid to meditation used by shaman, traditionally (6)
MANTRA – A hidden word (used by) shaMAN TRAditionally.

5d           Festive drinking in clubs leading to excitement (8)
CAROUSAL – Simplt C for Clubs and then AROUSAL for excitement.

6d           Possible murder clue misrepresented in tabloids? No (10)
BLOODSTAIN – An anagram (misrepresented by) TABLOIDS NO.

8d           Single-handedly cutting through claptrap (7)
BALONEY – ALONE or single-handedly inside (cutting) BY for through.

13d         Damaged museum slide replaced (10)
VANDALISED – The museum is the V AND A (Victoria and Albert). Add an anagram (replaced) of SLIDE.

14d         Triumphantly elevate academic position (5)
CHAIR – Two definitions – to hoist up a champion upon one’s shoulders and a formal name for a Don’s position at University.

16d         Made dry red, inferior to white, oddly (8)
WITHERED – Place RED from the clue underneath (inferior to) an odd anagram of WHITE.

18d         Champion leading in golf, say (7)
SUPPORT – UP (leading) inside SPORT, of which golf is an example (say or e.g. is required to show the definition by example in crossword clues).

21d         Part of seven-piece suite‘s in flat on time (6)
PLANET – My favourite clue. The cunning definition refers to Holst’s Planet Suite. Place PLANE or flat on T for Time.

22d         Improvement coming from cure for malady (6)
REFORM – The improvement is hidden in (coming from) the last three words of the clue.

24d         How deal is cut, having spotted what’s on top of charts (4)
SAWN – Remember that deal is a type of wood. Place SAW (spotted) before N(orth), the sign that is traditionally found at the top of maps and charts.

26d         Cheat man on board initially trapped in corner (4)
ROOK – Two definitions, the latter referring to the chess piece (man on board) who starts the game unable to move in the corner of the board.      

Many thanks to Mr Greer for the puzzle and Big thanks to crypticsue for covering yet again last week.


  1. Hilary
    Posted June 16, 2016 at 9:52 am | Permalink | Reply

    Thanks Gnomey, I quite liked 11a when I spotted it but my favourite had to be 20a because it was a real penny drop moment. Sunday is a problem for favourites because you would like to pick all of them.

  2. jean-luc cheval
    Posted June 16, 2016 at 2:21 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Oh yes, I remember this one.
    Wrote IRONING CLASSES in 12a.
    Thanks to gnomethang for the review.

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