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Toughie 1880

Toughie No 1880 by Warbler

Hints and tips by Kitty

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BD Rating  –  Difficulty * –  Enjoyment ***


Warm greetings to you all from London.  Warbler today eases us into a new week of middle-of-the-paper puzzles with this enjoyable romp.

The definitions are underlined in the clues below, and you’ll find the answers inside the   buttons.  The exclamation mark is not an imperative – click only if you wish to reveal all.



1a    Having a feeling of foreboding now one starts to experience nasty tremors (11)
PRESENTIENT:  Start with now (6) and add the Roman numeral one and the initial letters of (starts to) the final words of the clue

7a    Summing up in chat about European Commission (5)
RECAP:  An informal talk around the abbreviated form of the institution named

8a    Stopped deep river swirling round outlet (9)
PREVENTED:  This is an anagram (swirling) of DEEP R(iver) round an opening or airhole

10a   After third of November intern trained as a wine-seller (7)
VINTNER:  After the third letter of November goes an anagram (trained) of INTERN

11a   Small glittery fish with black eyes (7)
SHINERS:  A definition with a second definition: some small silvery fish and an informal term for black eyes

12a   Pillage about half of street (5)
REAVE:  About or concerning and half of a six-letter street

13a   One voids last of wagers from run with fillies going wild (9)
NULLIFIER:  An anagram (going wild) of RUN with FILLIEs, having had the last (letter) of wagers taken from it

16a   Strangely gloomy yet it describes word derivation (9)
ETYMOLOGY:  An anagram (strangely) of GLOOMY YET

18a   Short article by Greek character? Yet another one! (5)
THETA:  A grammatical article missing its last letter (short) plus a Greek letter gives you another one – another Greek letter, that is

19a   Excessively attentive to a Latin paramour (3,4)
ALL OVER:  A charade of the A from the clue, an abbreviation for Latin, and a significant other

22a   Hesitation when returning heart-throb gets rebuff (7)
REPULSE:  The reversal (when returning) of a short word of hesitation followed by the beat of the heart and arteries

23a   Tragic heroine seen originally wearing green article (9)
ESMERALDA:  The first letter (originally) of seen inside (wearing) a shade of green and a grammatical article.  As this Victor Hugo heroine was named for the green pendant she wore, this is a semi-all-in-one clue

24a   A singular collection that’s worth having (5)
ASSET:  A (from the clue), the abbreviation for singular, and a group

25a   Time restrictions initially stop me for instance becoming a fashion icon (11)
TRENDSETTER:  Put together the first letters (initially) of the first words of the clue, a word meaning cease, and what the writer of the clue is an example of



1d    Year after college involved in crazy caper to do with money (9)
PECUNIARY:  Y(ear) goes after a higher education establishment (abbreviated) inside an anagram (crazy) of CAPER

2d    Former writer ultimately queries expensive outlay (7)
EXPENSE:  Former (2), writer (3) and the last letters (ultimately) of queries and expensive.  The answer is almost completely there in the clue

3d    Ten operas rewritten in international language (9)
ESPERANTO:  An anagram (rewritten) of TEN OPERAS

4d    Draw boundaries of ruins in rows (5)
TIERS:  A draw in competition and the outside letters (boundaries) of ruins

5d    English value current and former profs (7)
EMERITI:  String together an abbreviation for English, value or worth and the symbol for electric current

6d    One being coached in statute examination (5)
TUTEE:  This student is to be found lurking in the last couple of words of the clue

7d    Echo coming from beaver tangled with tree by river (11)
REVERBERATE:  After R(iver) comes BEAVER with TREE, anagrammed (tangled)

9d    Mandate is rewritten to include Royal Marines laying down weapons (11)
DISARMAMENT:  An anagram (rewritten) of MANDATE IS includes the abbreviation for the Royal Marines

14d   Perhaps hen’s crackle regularly provides teatime treat (5,4)
LAYER CAKE:  Something which describes a hen as a producer of eggs followed by alternate letters (regularly) of crackle

15d   I realised, unfortunately, I’m an impractical person (9)
IDEALISER:  An anagram (unfortunately) of I REALISED

17d   Old British rhyme written on this side of coin? (7)
OBVERSE:  Abbreviations for old and British, then some poetry.  Here is the other side of the coin

18d   Wilson, for one, gets brown around this part of sailing vessel (7)
TOPMAST:  What Harold Wilson was an example of is surrounded by (gets … around) a verb to brown

20d   It follows fifty-one miles to reach border (5)
LIMIT:  The It from the clue follows fifty-one in Roman numerals and the abbreviation for miles

21d   Irritated as gun, though not loud, finally exploded (5)
RILED:  A type of gun without the musical indication meaning loud followed by the last letter (finally) of exploded


Thanks to Warbler.  My favourite is 14d because it went down a treat.  What did you find tasty?




21 comments on “Toughie 1880

  1. Mostly very straightforward so I wouldn’t quibble with one star. The spelling of 12 was unfamiliar and 1a needed a bit of thought. All very pleasant.

    Thanks to Kitty and Warbler.

  2. Not very often that I do a Toughie, but, Hoofityoudonkey recommended this puzzle in the backpager blog so I took that recommendation and completed it faster than today’s backpager – 60-70% R&W, could almost have been a ‘wrong envelope’ – */****.

    12a was a new word for me that required BRB verification, and there seemed to be a few oldies but goodies and one certain backpager recent repeat.

    Very enjoyable. Thanks to Warbler and Kitty.

  3. How could I possibly think the PM in 18d was Wilson Churchill? I need a rest.
    Very much a write in today.
    Thanks to Excalibur, Warbler and Kitty.

  4. Thank you to everyone for your speedy pointing out of a slip of the brain in the intro. Meant Warbler, fingers typed Excalibur. No idea why. I’ve corrected it now.

  5. Easy and all as it was , I managed to make mistakes. 1a for example.
    19a is my favourite.
    Thanks to Kitty and Warbler.

  6. An enjoyable puzzle and easier than the back page. I’m glad SENF took Hoofityoudonkey(??)’s advice. Many people who did the back pager were defeated by an American author called Lemony Snicket – yes, me too!
    Here I love the clever illustration to 14d. I’m sure it’s as delicious as it looks. Is Kitty another Mary Berry?

  7. Perhaps not difficult enough for hardened toughiers, but for me, the first Toughie i have completed. So I am well pleased.
    There were a few I struggled to parse, so i will enjoy learning from Kitty’s hints.
    Thanks all.

  8. Enjoyable though very quick puzzle – the back pager took me longer.

    A pity about 2d. At first I didn’t believe my answer could be right, but sure enough.

    Last one in was the little fish – had to look them up.

    many thanks Warbler and thanks Kitty

  9. Had to give this a go as as several on ‘the other side’ recommended it. Like Dutch, I couldn’t quite believe 2d, and thought that I must have 1a wrong as well, so needed to check the review. Also needed to check 13a, as I had an ‘s’ at the end, which then didn’t fit with the ‘r’ I wanted to put into 9d. I couldn’t work out where the ‘s’ had gone until I read the review. Thank you Kitty and Warbler. It didn’t scare me too much, and I would give a toughie another go.

  10. Was this an easy back-pager posing as a Toughie bymistake? Either that or I’m suddenly brilliant!! (not likely – before you lot say so). I enjoyed it of course, but only */***. I think I solved this quicker that today’s back-pager.

  11. This was a sheep in wolf’s clothing. Took me only as long as the backpager did. 12a was a new word but the wordplay enabled me to get it.

  12. Not much to say about this one, one star difficulty for sure and mostly surfaces that just exist instead of having a joke or a story to tell. My favourite was 18d though, quite nice. Thanks setter and Kitty!

  13. The fish in 11a were new to us but a quick check in Mrs B soon sorted that one out. We thought it was a pity that the answer was almost in the clue for 2d. We thought that if something like ‘bizarre’ had been used as the penultimate word the clue would still work and it could mislead solvers towards an anagram.
    Did not take long but enjoyable as ever.
    Thanks Warbler and Kitty.

  14. 1* is probably right, but l still have my problem with printing so spend most of my time squinting through a magnifying glass so it took me longer than it should. It did come across as rather a “wrong envelope” job, but l quite liked 18d. Thanks to Warbler, and to Kitty.

  15. Probably the easiest Toughie to grace these pages. 11ac and 18d were the only two to cause any real issues. Fun while it lasted!

  16. Thanks to Warbler and to Kitty for the review and hints. A very enjoyable puzzle, but hardly a Toughie, as I managed to complete it unaided.

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