Toughie 1802 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 1802

Toughie No 1802 by Samuel

Hints and tips by Bufo

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

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

This was another straightforward puzzle by Samuel that caused me no problems at all. After getting 15 across and 3 down I started looking for other Beatles-related answers but couldn’t find any. I was in Liverpool last week (while Big Dave was doing the blog for me) where I visited the Beatles Story exhibition. This left me completely Beatled out and made me glad that I had volunteered to look after the dog while the rest of the family went on the Magical Mystery coach tour.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a    Get frustrated as former partner repeats a failing (10)
EXASPERATE: A former partner + an anagram (failing) of REPEATS A

6a    Tired defeat (4)
BEAT: 2 meanings: tired or exhausted/to defeat

9a    Island nation reflected after chap discovered Japanese writing (5)
HAIKU: The middle two letters of CHAP (discovered = without the covers) + a reversal of our nation and I (island) = a Japanese poem

10a    Game for better wine, drunkenly get barrel (5-2-2)
VINGT-ET-UN: A card game played in casinos = wine + an anagram (drunkenly) of GET + a barrel

12a    Often in TT? (4,5,4)
TIME AFTER TIME: Think what T is an abbreviation for and one of the T’s follows the other

14a    Improved journalist employs Republican during recess (8)
ENRICHED: A senior journalist goes round R (republican) inside a recess in a wall

15a    Beware sailors in underground place (6)
CAVERN: ‘Beware!’ + the branch of the armed services that sailors belong to

17a    Pass on the setter’s role (6)
IMPART: ‘The setter is’ + a role

19a    Dad’s here, freaking out people with loud shocks? (8)
REDHEADS: An anagram (freaking out) of DAD’S HERE

21a    Playing modern studios is ill-judged (13)

24a    Expert emptied tray with inadequate-sounding fuel for torch (9)
ACETYLENE: An expert (3) + the first and last letters of TRAY + a homophone of ‘inadequate’ (4)

25a    Landlord, not husband, returns carrying gold trunk (5)
TORSO: A reversal of a landlord (e.g. of a pub) with the letter H (husband) removed goes round ‘gold’ to give a trunk of the human body

26a    Criminal hit with this point could become atheist (4)
EAST: ATHEIST is an anagram of HIT and this point of the compass

27a    Black tree died, and another — that’s rubbish (10)
BALDERDASH: B (black) + a tree + D (died) + another tree


1d    Imitate speech opposing covers (4)

2d    One flying player gets through instead of 100 (7)
AVIATOR: Someone who flies a plane = a player (on the stage) with C (100) replaced by ‘through’

3d    Rework my rap with clean-cut singer (4,9)
PAUL MCCARTNEY: An anagram (rework) of MY RAP CLEAN-CUT

4d    Grass about flesh that’s exposed (8)
REVEALED: A marsh grass round the flesh of a calf

5d    Doctrine that’s the same from Northern and Southern viewpoints (5)
TENET: A palindrome

7d    Knit one of a pair given to 5 topped and tailed (7)
ENTWINE: One of a pair goes inside the middle three letters of the answer to 5 down

8d    Offer head warmth (10)
TENDERNESS: An offer to provide a particular service at a particular price + a headland

11d    More passionate about English supporting ship in rubbish novel (5,3,5)
TARKA THE OTTER: A biblical ship (3) inside ‘rubbish’ (3) + ‘more passionate’ (6) round E (English) = a novel by Henry Williamson

13d    Average signal — on this? (6,4)
MEDIUM WAVE: The first word means ‘average’ and the whole is a radio frequency band

16d    Democrat enters debates about support for person retiring (8)
BEDSTEAD: D (Democrat) inside an anagram (about) of DEBATES

18d    Have gangs set upon son? (7)
POSSESS: Gangs + S (son)

20d    Road ran around state (7)
ANDORRA: An anagram (around) of ROAD RAN = a European state

22d    Swelling fame delays turning up in part (5)
EDEMA: Hidden in reverse in FAME DELAYS

23d    Old German won hearts (4)
GOTH: A member of an ancient Germanic people (or someone who may have been in Whitby last weekend) = ‘possessed’ + H (hearts)

I hope for more of a challenge next week

23 comments on “Toughie 1802

  1. At the fluffy end of both the Samuel and Toughie spectra but an enjoyable time was had while it lasted

    Thanks to Samuel and Bufo too

  2. Gentle and fun.

    I liked 12a (TT), 19a (loud shocks) and the semi-all-in-one in 13d

    Many thanks Bufo & Samuel

  3. Needless to say this was right up my street – gentle, fun and fluffy suits me fine!
    Like Bufo, I went looking for more Beatles references after getting 15a, 3d and even 6a. Although I didn’t find any more, the pop scene did seem to continue with Cyndi Lauper at 12a and The Animals at 21a.
    That cunning device in 26a didn’t fool me today – probably just lucky!
    10a was the last to fall – penny only dropped when the initial letter went in.

    I think 8d was my top of the pops but a mention must be given to 27a – one of my favourite words.
    Interesting that there is a back-page/Toughie cross over again today with 28a on the back page and 2d on this side.

    Many thanks to Samuel (hope you pop in later) and to Bufo, who obviously suffered for his family’s sake in Liverpool – well done that man!

    PS If anyone’s around – the answers for 25a & 8d need a tweak.

  4. Only a * for the usual Toughie audience, for the rest of us it about a 2.5 but whatever a damn sight easier than today’s BP. At least this one was fun.
    However, the setter has missed out the O in 22d unless they are American who can’t cope with diphthongs.
    Thx to all

  5. Like others I found this one less tricky than the back-pager – I was held up only by inability to spell the musician’s surname. My favourite was 12a. Thanks to Samuel and Bufo.

  6. After a slow start until I got on the correct wavelength, this proved to be not that tough but it was certainly very enjoyable.

    27a is such a lovely word, and 9a was a new one on me.

    I’m wondering if the tense for the definition and the answer match in 1a? It doesn’t seem quite right.

    12a & 26a are fighting it out for favourite status.

    Many thanks to Samuel and to Bufo.

  7. I’m all for fluffy today. I checked 10A, 12A, 24A and 27A, but 12A comes out tops for me/ thanks Samuel and Bufo.

    Neighbors had to go away suddenly for a couple of days so we are enjoying the company of their pretty black lab. She’s settled right in. We might not give her back.

  8. I really enjoyed this and I didn’t find it that easy , it was still a Toughie.
    My favourite is probably 24a or perhaps 12a.
    Thanks to Samuel and Bufo.

  9. Fluffy perhaps but an awful lot of answers were not words in common usage were they? In my dictionary, 13d was hyphenated.
    . I loved 19a. I hope Harry did!

  10. Samuel always seems to be able to inject a level of fun into his puzzles that make them a delight to solve. The level of difficulty becomes somewhat irrelevant in comparison for me. Heaps to enjoy in this one that all went together smoothly.
    Thanks Samuel and Bufo.

  11. Well, I found it harder then the last Samuel Toughie … :)

    Still, definitely Tuesday level. My brain, however, appears to be somewhere in the middle of next week.

    Having particular trouble unscrambling anagrams of place names today.

    All very enjoyable indeed. As KiwiColin says, Samuel does always seem to come up with the fun factor. Smiles at 6a 8d and 10a. Liked the loud shocks in 19a and loved 12a, which is my favourite today.

    Thanks to Samuel and Bufo.

  12. Very enjoyable and much easier (and more enjoyable) than the BP.
    I needed a couple of hints to break the tape, many thanks Bufo, also to Samuel.

  13. Well, this took marginally longer than the back pager, but it was only just, and it is much later now and I’m beginning to flag. 13d and 14ac gave a little pause for thought at the close. For the former I really wanted PAR to be part of the answer when of course it couldn’t be. Enjoyable while it lasted.

  14. Thanks as always to bufo for the blog, and for the (mostly) positive comments. I must confess that the two Beatles-related answers were purely coincidence; if I’d realised the connection when filling the grid, I’d have added some more.

    Sorry to those who found it a tad on the easier side, but hopefully it was still entertaining.

    To pick up on a couple of points, Chambers gives 13dn as hyphenated only as an adjective, not as a noun. It also makes no reference to the five-letter form of 22dn being an American version of the word, hence the lack of a “US” indicator. Hopefully that makes sense!

    Thanks again to all.

    1. Thank you for popping in, Samuel. It’s always good to hear from our setters and to get your take on any questions that have been raised.
      Please don’t take TOO much notice of those who thought it should have been tougher…………..

          1. CS, I’ve always used ‘hear,hear’ myself, But was never certain I was correct. Your assertion has made me feel better about it, thanks.

  15. I got within a couple of this one, good attempt from me, though I see this wasn’t a tough toughie !

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