ST 2919 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2919 (Hints)


Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2919 (Hints)

Hints and tips by Senf

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

A very good Sunday morning from Winnipeg where it is beginning to be quite autumnal, the wind blowing the leaves off the trees and zero degrees to start the day on Friday.

Virgilius in a benevolently tricky frame of mind today, there were two clues that were holding out on me, with some misdirection and obfuscation giving us another very enjoyable puzzle, the usual handful of anagrams, a homophone (we haven’t had one of those for a while), and a lurker – all in 28 clues.

My joint-favourites – 11a and 13d.

Don’t forget to follow BD’s instructions in red at the bottom of the hints!

As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, a number of the more difficult clues have been selected and hints provided for them.

Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”. Where the hint describes a construct as “usual” this means that more help can be found in The Usual Suspects, which gives a number of the elements commonly used in the wordplay. Another useful page is Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing, which features words with meanings that are not always immediately obvious.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions.

Some hints follow:


7a Performing relatively well on course, or rather poorly (5,3)
On a golf course it’s good, elsewhere it isn’t.

9a Part of what one does is made up (6)
The lurker (part of) found in the third to fifth words of the clue.

11a Saint subject to criticism? That’s child’s play (5,3)
An important saint and a three letter term for criticise gives a children’s book and dramatic performance.

19a Part of act heard and understood (4)
The homophone (heard) of part of an act in a play.

20a Total unity as Asian country cut requirement for sight-seeing (14)
An Asian country minus its last letter (cut) and a term that is a requirement for something to be seen.

27a Pulse is one fifty, following fast time (6)
The period of fasting in the Christian church followed by the letter that can represent one and the Roman numeral for fifty.

28a Began again after page is taken as read (8)
The single letter for page followed by a single word for began again.


1d Charge over line — that makes sense (4)
A type of charge followed by (over) the single letter for line.

3d Horse-drawn vehicle, something one aims to avoid when driving (4)
A double definition, the second relates to speeding.

4d Computer on which option from menu shouldn’t be dropped? (6)
A type of computer or one of the places where one should not drop food.

6d Doctor chatted about soldiers in separate unit (10)
An anagram (doctor) of CHATTED containing (about) one of a favourite term for soldiers.

13d Out? I’m not, and very happy about it (10)
A single word for being very happy containing (about it) the opposite of I’m out.

16d Reasonable manner and pace (8)
Synonyms of manner and pace.

21d Class of sounds, all used in audiometry (6)
A class of speech sounds that all appear in audiometry.

26d Rebel following master in preparation of courses (4)
The favourite revolutionary and the single letter for following.

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Mungo Jerry’s first single (released as a 33rpm Dawn Maxi Single (whatever that is/was)) which made it to Number One the second week after its release in 1970:

34 comments on “ST 2919 (Hints)

  1. 2*/5*. Same old, same old …
    … brilliance!

    Great fun as ever, although I had a false start by instantly writing in the wrong synonym for the first word of the answer to 7a, the first clue I looked at. This rendered 1d & 2d impossible until I realised the error of my ways. Thereafter this was plain sailing.

    Picking one clue as a favourite is unfair on all the others so I won’t even try.

    Many thanks to Virgilius and to Senf.

    1. I did exactly the same with 7a RD until I looked at 1d and saw the obvious answer. Confused me for a second as I was confident of them both. Brilliant crossword as ever on a Sunday. Thanks to all involved

  2. Definitely had to wait for a couple of penny-drop moments to complete this one but, with the exception of one synonym which I thought was a bit ‘iffy’, this was another gem from the Sunday maestro.

    Top three for me were 25a along with 13&24d. Made me laugh to envisage 24d appearing on a school report! Hope that’s sufficiently vague to avoid relegation to the naughty step?

    Thanks to Virgilius and to ‘Senf on Sunday’.

    BTW – for those who like to follow ‘our gang’ – both Vigo and Snape (Eccles) have puzzles appearing in the Indy next week.

  3. I found this fairly straightforward to complete but a bit longer to parse to completion, so 2.5*/5* overall. Several outstanding clues, with 21d getting an honourable mention behind 13d. Magnificently enjoyable from start to finish, and a surefire way to cheer up a dank Sunday morning in the Marches.

    Thank you Virgilius for another sparkling crossword, and to Senf.

  4. Correction fluid needed for the first part of 7a; apart from that, no other problems.

    Many thanks to Virgilius, and to Senf.

  5. Thanks to Virgilius for the normal Sunday morning fun.

    My interpretation of 3d differs from that given by Senf – I thought the “driving” was on the golf course rather than on the road.

        1. Chambers gives the definition: a bunker (golf)

          No mention of it being an Americanism!

          But is Chambers always right?

    1. I know Virgilius seems to like golfing clues and I assumed the golf clue of the week was (obviously) 7a. It also seemed logical that 3d was based on driving vehicles so the potential for a second golf clue never registered with me even though I had been watching a lot of golf on TV yesterday. But, it wasn’t real golf, it was The Presidents Cup.

    2. Golf never crossed my mind in relation to that clue – it was definitely road for me. Would be interesting to know how Virgilius intended it.

      1. Me neither, assumed it was Formula One related. Maybe because I know nothing about golf anyway.
        Thanks to setter and Senf

      2. I’m in favour of the golf explanation, since “one aims” seems more relevant for someone using a driver.

      3. 3d. It could be either golf or driving, but for me the former is right – as explained by Gazza above. I reckon the trap here is a sand trap. Another clue that is tantalizingly subjective!

  6. Definitely a notch or two up in the difficulty stakes this week, but as entertaining as usual. My top of the pops are 27A and 13D. Thanks Virgilius and Senf.

  7. Yup, I’m another who got the first half of 7a wrong. Apart from that, all quite straight-forward. I also agree with the golfing reference in 3d.

    I would always spell 24d with an E, but it appears that both spellings are acceptable.

    Many thanks to all.

  8. I agree with Senf about the obfuscation and misdirection. This creates the enjoyment. A few easy reads, and enough anagrams to make it possible for amateurs (like me). A bit unhappy about parsing of 2d and 24d, but I suppose they work. Wide smile from 25a (diplomacy) , and grin from 27a. (pulse)
    All looks so obvious when it’s done.
    Thanks to V &S, but also to the bloggers who bring life to this venerable institution.
    And a mention to Xword Solver for iPad, when I need eHelp.

  9. Quite tricky and took me ages to really get going – lights out was delayed last night!

    Went to see West Ham v Swansea yesterday – a terrible game but 3 badly needed points, and the inevitable sacking of Bilic put off for a bit longer.

    Settling down for Wasps v Bath – should be good!

  10. Another superbly clued Sunday treat, as others have said it’s never easy to pick favourites from Virgilius’s goody bag, but I’ll go for 4d, 6d, 18d and my LOI, 9a.

    Many thanks to Mr Greer and to Senf.

  11. Enjoyable with just enough bite particularly in the NE. Thought 4d a bit clumsy. I also would have gone for wrong first word for 7a (eventually my Fav) had I not already solved 1d and 2d. Golfing version of 3d didn’t occur to me. Thank you Virgilius and Senf. Grey and drizzly in West Sussex so more than usual of the jumbo weekend newspapers may get read.

  12. More Sunday fun from Virgilius, but I agree, a little trickier.
    Unusually, I couldn’t parse 4d, I find his clues so cut and dried there’s no doubting the answers, but I knew it couldn’t be anything else.
    Liked so much, but I smiled at 11a, so that’s my fave.
    Thanks to Virgilius and to Senf, particularly for the 4d enlightenment.

  13. I thought it was a bit trickier than usual.
    I didn’t fall into the 3d of the first word of 7a because I’d already got 1d – no naughty corner for me today!
    The golfing interpretation of 3d didn’t occur to me – all my ‘golfy’ little grey cells had been used up with 7a.
    18d was my last answer and I was slow with 20a.
    I was ‘had’ yet again by the abbreviation in 26d – dim, and forgetful – one day I’ll remember that one.
    It took me ages to see how ‘audiometry’ got into 21d.
    I liked 8 and 13d. My favourite was either 4 or 24d.
    Thanks to Virgilius and to Senf, specially for the Mungo Jerry which was No 1 on my 21st birthday.
    Now on to Prolixic’s NTSPP – didn’t have time to do it yesterday.

  14. Lovely stuff as usual from Mr Greer. I started well, avoided the pitfall at 7a only to grind to a halt soon after. Luckily the Sheffield Wednesday result reinvigorated my energy levels and everything subsequently fell into place. 27a and 21d were both good but my favourite was 13d. 2.5/4* overall.
    Thanks to Virgilius and to Senf for the hints.

  15. Still 4 clues stopping me from finishing, but otherwise an enjoyable challenge today.

  16. Not so enoyable today, many I could not parse, even with the hihts.
    Thanks all.

  17. Many smiles here. Among the acrosses I very much liked 11a, 25a, and 27a. On the downs I ticked the clever &lit 8d, 13d, and 24d. I was with those thinking road on 3d (although I now see that the BRB gives the golf interpretation as the only one that stands alone). The cryptic part of 4d didn’t work for me. Thanks to Virgilius and to Senf.

  18. A little trickier than usual for a Sunday, I thought, though as enjoyable as always. Last in 1d, which seemed to take an absolute age.

  19. Wonderful! 2*/5*, and my favourite was the charmingly simple 19a. My thanks to Virgilius, and to Senf for the hints.

  20. The top LH corner has got this roockie stumped – is the obvious golfing answer to 7a not correct?
    can someone answer me out of the group

    1. There are two synonymic words that can be used for the first element of 7a. One might be more common than the other. It is probably the less common one that you should be looking for.

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