ST 2879 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2879

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2879

A full review by crypticsue

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This puzzle was published on Sunday 18th December

BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment ****


Straightforward and full of things for those of us who enjoy this time of year.


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.


1 and 29: Across Consumer guide for this week — see intervening answers (3-9,8,4)

10a         Remedy for overindulgence I can’t set out in advertisement (7)
  ANTACID –  An anagram (set out) of I CANT put in AD (advertisement)

11a         Cookie ingredients old man’s mixed (7)
ALMONDS – A mixed anagram of OLD MANS

12a         Strange specimen I provided for baked goods (5,4)
MINCE PIES – Another strange anagram of SPECIMEN I

13a         Sponge, say, a piece of which isn’t hard (4)
CAKE – A type of sponge often used in the expression ‘a piece of cake’ to mean that something is easy

14a         Fare for holiday in foreign country (6)
TURKEY – The usual fare for Christmas dinner or a foreign country

15a         Sources of party hats and nuts (8)
CRACKERS – Sources of party hats, tiny gifts and bad jokes or another way of saying nuts or crazy

19a         Starts covering up blunder making fortified wines (8)
SHERRIES –  SHIES or starts aside like a horse from fear ‘covering up’ ERR (blunder)

21a         Cuban products leaders of Irish government put in vehicles (6)
  CIGARS – The ‘leaders’ of Irish Government put in CARS (vehicles)

24a         Spread put on 15 or loaf (4)
  PATE – Spread put on crackers or an old humorous term for the top of  the head (loaf)

25a         Feigned suffering, we hear, resulting in celebratory drink (9)
CHAMPAGNE –  A homophone (we hear) of SHAM PAIN (feigned suffering)

27a         Tree decorations also found in non-U things like this (7)
CANDLES –   The ‘things like this’ are CLUES, from which the U should be removed (non-U) and AND (also) inserted (but not where the U was!)

28a         Important people in Leicester and Derby, for example (7)
CHEESES – slang term for important people –  Leicester and Derby are, of course, types of cheese)

29a         See 1   Down

2d           Something needed in court, always reduced for crook (9)
RACKETEER – RACKET (something used on a tennis, squash or badminton court) and EER (a reduced way of saying ever or always)

3d           Helper on course scoundrel gets pass on (6)
CADDIE – CAD (scoundrel) DIE (pass on)

4d           In relation to benefit, including right to claim again (8)
REASSERT – RE ASSET (in relation to benefit) including R (right)

5d           Announced total, approximately (4)
SOME – A homophone (announced) of SUM (total)

6d           Give authority to soldier before scheduled meeting (7)
MANDATE – MAN (soldier) goes before DATE (scheduled meeting)

7d           Name of female appearing in revised issue (5)
SUSIE – An anagram (revised) of ISSUE

8d           Male American fliers in ancient jumbos (8)
MAMMOTHS – M (male) AM (American) MOTHS (fliers)

9d           Part of what one regrets as person making amends (6)
ATONER – Lurking in part of whATONE Regrets

16d         Quality of some snacks princess ordered second (9)
CRISPNESS – An anagram (ordered) of PRINCESS followed by the abbreviation for Second

17d         State of uncertainty that gives us power in hearing, say (8)
SUSPENSE – US (from the clue) and P (power) inserted in SENSE (hearing being one of our senses)

18d         Erects barrier around someone aiding criminal offence (6,2)
FENCES IN – FENCE (someone aiding criminal) SIN (offence)

20d         Gradually consume some treat, intoxicated (3,4)
EAT INTO – Another lurker – this time in some trEAT INTOxicated

22d         Imposing latest period to avoid oysters? (6)
AUGUST – because you are only supposed to eat oysters in months ending in an R and August is the last month in the year not to have an R at the end

23d         Gift container king put in odd place (6)
PARCEL – R (Rex, king) put in an anagram (odd) of PLACE

24d         Call for peace expressed in lots of cards (5)
PACKS –  Another homophone, this time expressed in PAX (call for peace)

26d         Fellow adding sauce in alcoholic drink with egg (4)
FLIP – F (fellow) LIP (sauce)