Toughie No 1785 by Kcit
Hints and tips by Gazza
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BD Rating – Difficulty */** – Enjoyment ***
We have a pretty gentle but enjoyable Toughie today – thanks to Kcit. I noticed when writing the hints how often we had to add or subtract the first or last letter from words.
Please leave a comment telling us how you fared with the puzzle and what you thought of it.
1a Run back, getting angry, though not at first at an intense level (4-6)
DEEP-SEATED – reverse a verb to run or hurry and add an adjective meaning angry without its first letter.
6a Part of orchestra obscuring entry of ropey singer (4)
BASS – one of the sections of an orchestra without the first letter of ropey.
9a Suffer endless scramble to secure page in historic paper (7)
PAPYRUS – a verb meaning to suffer or be punished is followed by a scramble without its last letter. Finally insert the abbreviation for page.
10a Captured soldier, deprived of drink, retaining little energy — liable to crumble? (7)
POWDERY – the abbreviation for a captured soldier and an adjective meaning thirsty containing the abbreviation for energy.
12a Left University after work? Mostly stay, seizing the moment (13)
OPPORTUNISTIC – a sailor’s left and an abbreviation for university follow the usual abbreviation for work. Follow all that with a verb to stay or persist without its last letter.
14a Bird accepted bait (small piece of food) (6)
TITBIT – charade of a songbird and a verb meaning ‘took the bait’.
15a Mediterranean port, Nice, unfortunately swamped by molten lava (8)
VALENCIA – an anagram (unfortunately) of NICE inside another anagram (molten) of LAVA.
17a Mobile communicator to get sharper after quibble (8)
CARPHONE – a verb to make something sharper follows a verb to quibble or find fault.
19a Mountain’s gone over by half of visitors, causing bother (6)
PLAGUE – reverse a high mountain and add the first half of a word meaning visitors.
22a Painter’s masterpiece, else his paint misplaced around ceiling, primarily (7,6)
SISTINE CHAPEL – a clever anagram (misplaced) of ELSE HIS PAINT containing the primary letter of ceiling. The painter is Michelangelo.
24a Figure, say, included by artist omitting old man (7)
INTEGER – the abbreviation for ‘say’ goes inside an artist without the affectionate word for one’s old man.
25a Laugh coarsely about the setter eating large apple (7)
BRAMLEY – a verb to laugh like an ass contains a pronoun identifying the setter and that, in turn, contains L(arge).
26a Centrepiece of release by maverick ultimately is disclosure (4)
LEAK – the central letters of release and the ultimate letter of maverick.
27a Put off by a book about holidays, initially unwilling to travel (4-2-4)
STAY-AT-HOME – a verb to put off or suspend followed by A and a large book containing the initial letter of holidays.
1d Fool to try gym at school (4)
DOPE – split the answer 2,2 for the wordplay.
2d Former airman deferring current adventure (7)
EXPLOIT – start with a former airman but hold back the symbol for electric current by two places.
3d I pledge to fill train, providing illumination (5,8)
STRIP LIGHTING – I and a verb to pledge go inside a train or series.
4d Almost certain to replace one of first four letters? Ridiculous (6)
ABSURD – start with the first four letters of our alphabet and replace one of them with an adjective meaning certain without its last letter.
5d Love our family, say, engaged in error, turning up for adoption (8)
ESPOUSAL – the usual letter for love and a pronoun that could mean ‘our family’ go inside the reversal of an error or aberration.
7d A doubter, dismissing second item with germicidal properties (7)
ASEPTIC – A followed by a doubter or cynic without his or her second letter.
8d Startled cry sparks energy to enter building (10)
SKYSCRAPER – insert the abbreviation for energy into an anagram (startled) of CRY SPARKS.
11d Help athlete win when running, avoiding one learner’s impediment (5,8)
WHITE ELEPHANT – an anagram (when running) of HELP ATH[L]ETE WIN without one of the two abbreviations for learner.
13d Unmoved cash register company does it (5-5)
STOCK-STILL – split the answer 6,4 and it’s what a cash register company does. Shouldn’t the definition be ‘unmoving’ rather than ‘unmoved’?
16d About to be nipped by beetle, say, where you wouldn’t want people to see? (2,6)
IN SECRET – insert one of the abbreviations for ‘about’ into what a beetle is an example of.
18d Egyptian city went down in list (7)
ROSETTA – a verb meaning ‘went down’ (like the sun) goes inside a list.
20d Miss one thing studied by astrologer or astronomer (7)
GALILEO – concatenate a dialect word for a miss or young lady, the Roman numeral for one and one of the twelve “things” studied by an astrologer.
21d Hesitant about a couple of books in poor condition (6)
SHABBY – an adjective meaning hesitant or cagey contains A and two abbreviations for book.
23d Kind City people will suppress it (4)
TYPE – as is so often the case our final answer is a lurker.
I liked 2d, 4d and 20d but my favourite is 22a. Which one(s) gave you a warm feeling?
On the day that the government is triggering Article 50 to get us out of the EU I thought it would be helpful to hear Sir Humphrey’s explanation of why we joined in the first place: