Toughie 1838 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 1838

Toughie No 1838 by Kcit

Hints and tips by Bufo

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

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

The gentle Toughie week continues though this was probably more of a challenge than those of the last two days. I had no real problems with it though I can see that the Swedish physicist might trouble some people

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a    What’s provided in iron pipe? (4)
FIFE: ‘Provided’ inside the chemical symbol for iron

3a    Plastered on vacation, so I’m in AA, getting sorted out for this? (10)
DIPSOMANIA: An anagram (getting sorted out) of PD SO IM IN AA (PD = the first and last letters of PLASTERED) = an intermittent pathological craving for alcohol

9a    Way of working to fill a second book (4)
AMOS: An abbreviation denoting ‘a way of working’ inside A S (second) = a book of the Old Testament

10a    Wrong to collapse, hanging on with most of soccer team sent off (10)
FALLACIOUS: ‘To collapse’ (4) + ‘hanging on’ (9) with the letters TEN (most of soccer team) removed

11a    I refuse to accept the modern deadlock (7)
IMPASSE: When split (1’1,5) it could mean ‘I refuse to accept the modern’

13a    Low source of luminance one found in extremes of night — like this? (7)
MOONLIT: ‘To low (like cattle)’ + L (first letter of LUMINANCE) and I (one) inside the first and last letters of NIGHT

14a    Neglected child, say, returning to snatch absolute bargain (11)
GUTTERSNIPE: A reversal of an abbreviation denoting ‘say’ or ‘for example’ goes round ‘absolute’ (5) and ‘bargain’ (4)

18a    Lots to spend for toasted bread? (5,2,4)
MONEY TO BURN: The first word is bread of the sort that we spend

21a    Gratitude expressed during functions in Surrey town (7)
STAINES: A 2-letter word expressing gratitude inside trigonometrical functions

22a    Talk with a daughter that’s ahead of fashion? (7)
ADDRESS: A + D (daughter) + fashion

23a    Review in English very much leading to anger where the writer works (10)
ESCRITOIRE: A 4-letter abbreviated form of a word meaning a review inside E (English), ‘very much’ (2) and anger (3) = a writing desk

24a    Origin of hippie melody? (4)
HAIR: The first letter of HIPPIE + a melody = the name of a rock musical which was a product of hippie counterculture

25a    Sweet style captured by pen-tip at work (10)
PEPPERMINT: A hairstyle inside an anagram (at work) of PENTIP

26a    Instructive period crucial to betterment (4)


1d    Trick in board game gets the bird (8)
FLAMINGO: A trick (4) + IN + a board game of Japanese origin (2) = a large pink wading bird

2d    Pay for power at hotel? Here’s a way (8)
FOOTPATH: ‘To pay (the bill)’ + P (power) + AT + H (hotel)

4d    Angry couple, not married, laying siege to artist (5)
IRATE: A couple (two people in a relationship) with the letter M (married) removed goes round a 2-letter abbreviation denoting an artist

5d    Single idiot interrupting my serious mood (9)
SOLEMNITY: ‘Single’ (4) + an idiot (3) inside MY

6d    Cosmic order, endlessly renewed, framing new moment of time (11)
MICROSECOND: An anagram (renewed) of COSMIC ORDE round N (new)

7d    Fool about, elevating line in verse (6)
NOODLE: A reversal (elevating) of ‘about’ (2) + L (line) in ‘verse’ (3)

8d    Idiot’s houses and French property (6)
ASSETS: An idiot (3) and the possessive ‘S round the French word for ‘and’

12d    Offend boxing squad, English and European, coming to train (5,6)
STEAM ENGINE: ‘To offend’ (3) goes round (boxes) a squad (4) and an abbreviated form of ‘English’ (3). Putting an E (European) on the end then gives something that pulls a train

15d    Limits of seriousness to marine weather event (9)
SANDSTORM: The first and last letters of SERIOUSNESS are * *** *. This is followed by TO and a marine to give a weather event caused by the wind

16d    Tuesday’s gathering wind up after time for Guardian’s business (8)
TUTELAGE: The abbreviated form of Tuesday goes round T (time) and a reversal of a strong wind

17d    Swedish physicist‘s deep uncertainty over computer storage (8)
ANGSTROM: This Swedish physicist is best remembered for having a unit of length (10-10 metres) named after him. The wordplay is ‘deep uncertainty’ or ‘a general feeling of anxiety’ (5) + computer memory (3)

19d    A litre, in leak, gets out (6)
ASLEEP: A + L (litre) inside ‘to leak’ = ‘out’ or ‘unconscious’

20d    Wild animal’s mother rising on top (6)
MADCAP: A reversal of a mother (e.g. of a horse) + the uppermost part of anything

22d    Protective clothing in operation after a month (5)
APRON: ‘In operation’ (2) follows the abbreviated form of one of the months of the year

Perhaps tomorrow we’ll have the stinker that Gazza’s forecasting

15 comments on “Toughie 1838

  1. The swedish physicist was no problem for me, I’ve spent my life dealing with his unit.

    A gentle puzzle. Fun trying to remember the word for writing desk. I liked the toasted ‘bread’ (18a), the hippie melody (24a), the instructive period critical to betterment (26a), and the idiot interrupting my serious mood (5d)

    Many thanks Bufo and Kcit

  2. I found this a very enjoyable puzzle. No real hold ups. The Swedish physicist came easily enough with the computer memory and the other checkers. Many thanks to Kcit and Bufo.

  3. Enjoyable but yet another escapee from the inside back page

    I knew the physicist

    Thanks to Bufo and Kcit

  4. I trekked up and down all sorts of misleading clues. Tough toughie for me.
    I agree with Dutch’s choices and add 19d.
    Thanks to Bufo and Kcit.

  5. Thoroughly enjoyed and finished in good time again.
    This evening we will be able to give our full attention to the drivel that passes for conversation in the pub.
    Thanks Kcit and bufo.
    Janet is a left-hander who ticks backwards.

  6. Couldn’t get stuck into this, too much like hard work exacerbated by lots of long words with complicated compositions.
    Seem to remember I couldn’t get on board with Kcit’s last one, either. Ne’er mind. I’m with you, Una esp. 19d.
    Many thanks to Kcit and to Bufo for the enlightenment.

    I’m left handed and also reverse-tick.

  7. I found this fine for the most part but then came to a halt with four to go, and eventually gave up staring at it blankly and got out the solving aids. Not quite sure why now. As a physics person 17d was, at least, not a problem.

    All in all, enjoyable, with my favourites aligned with those of the previous commenters.

    Thanks to Kcit and to Bufo.

  8. With most of the rest of you, I have completed three days running. I did need the hints to parse 9a, 10a, 11a and 1d. Have never met this word for trick. Nervous about what Friday may have in store. Thanks guys.

  9. I found that filling the grid came easier than unraveling the details of some of the parsing. I did enjoy it, with 10, 18A and 19D getting ticks from me. thanks Kcit and Bufo.

  10. The trick in 1d needed confirmation in BRB but it all slotted together smoothly enough with a brief hold up in the NE. Enjoyable to solve.
    Thanks Kcit and Bufo.

  11. I found this one quite tough enough, thank you and – having followed Kitty’s link – I think it could well be my final hurrah for this week!

    Had to check with the BRB for the trick in 1d and needed Bufo’s help for the complete parsing of 10a (dim!) plus 7&15d.

    Thanks to Kcit and to Bufo for the explanations.

  12. 10a and, for reasons I can’t explain, 7d held me up. Struggled to explain 12d to myself as I couldn’t see beyond E, rather than ENG, for “English”

  13. We finished this before lunch but due to a funeral could not post comment until now, so will be brief. 3*/3*, good all-round fare.

    Mr Sheffieldsy knew the physicist.

    Thanks to Bufo and Kcit. Goodnight all.

  14. Thanks to Kcit and to Bufo for the review and hints. Way too difficult for me. Only managed to solve a dozen clues. Couldn’t get much from the hints either.

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