ST 2927 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2927 (Hints)


Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2927 (Hints)

Hints and tips by Senf

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A very good Sunday morning from Winnipeg – where we had a heatwave on Friday – plus 3 degrees!

Virgilius in a very benevolent frame of mind this week with a total of only 28 clues – the usual handful of anagrams, including partials, some double definitions, a homophone, and a couple of lurkers.

My joint-favourites – 20a (14 letter non-anagram just has to be a favourite) and 5d.

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 Liking quiet entrance (8)
The musical symbol for quiet followed by a synonym for entrance (as in fill with rapturous delight).

9a Assertion I, for one, heard (6)
The homophone (heard) of the type of letter that ‘I’ is.

11a Fee includes something done in medical business (8)
A synonym for fee containing (includes) a single word for something done.

17a Fish from middle of jetty beside Waterloo (5)
The middle letter of jeTty followed by (beside) the type of defeat suffered by Napoleon Bonaparte at his last battle.

20a Labour didn’t produce such funding (8,6)
The type of funding that, for example, may result from investatments.

25a As such, including university study (6)
A two word expression, from Latin, that is synonymic of as such containing the single letter for university.

28a Man in charge of section of the body (8)
Double definition – the first is a member of the armed forces.


1d Almost put out of service for protest (4)
A term for leaving military service minus its last letter (almost).

2d Reflecting sound selection after last goes top (6)
A synonym for selection with its last letter transposed to become the first.

5d Difference in new paintings going up in price (8)
The single letter for new, and a generic term for paintings reversed (going up) in a synonym for price.

8d JFK, for instance, as screened in fair portrayal (7)
The first lurker – a type of travel facility contained in (as screened in) the last two words of the clue.

13d Telling act that follows political no-win situation (10)
Double definition – the second is what happens when an electoral outcome cannot be determined.

18d Holidaymaker runs into popular person in bar? (7)
A single letter used in cricket scoring inserted (into) in a term for a person who might be popular in a bar or restaurant or . . .

21d Cure part of extreme dyslexia (6)
The second lurker found in (part of) the last two words of the clue.

26d Top performer that represents state in standard array (4)
Double definition – the second is one of fifty on the flag of the USA.

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After its London premiere on November 13, 1945 this film went on general release on November 26, 1945, 72 years ago today, so here is the trailer for it complete with snippets of  Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto Number 2:


30 comments on “ST 2927 (Hints)

  1. 3* / 5*. Another joy to solve on a Sunday – nicely challenging, with the NE holding out the longest, and great fun as always.

    I was perplexed by “three” in 12a as there are definitely more than three of them. However the BRB specifically mentions the three most common ones with a bit of a woolly catch-all in brackets covering less common ones, so I’ll forgive Virgilius (especially as the rest of the puzzle was so good!)

    16d is my favourite. It is a wonderful combination of accurate wordplay combined with a 100% relevant smooth surface. 9a also deserves a special mention, but once again most of the rest came under consideration for the top spot.

    Many thanks to Virgilius and to Senf.

  2. Senf is early on parade today (or late to bed considering the time difference).
    I needed more hints today than usual but I got there in the end with Senf’s help.
    14d and 22d fave clues today. Off to cry into my breakfast over how fast a promising start to the creekit has turned into what is probably a rout.

  3. Hard to look any further than 16d for the COTD despite there being so many to choose from. As ever, Virgilius has created another Sunday masterpiece for us to enjoy,. I agree with RD at #1 that this was a 3* /5* puzzle.

    Man thanks to Virgilius and to Senf.

  4. I had the same concern as RD for 12A. 9A gets my top spot today. Thanks Virgilius and Senf (please keep those chilly temps up there!)

  5. I agree with RD’s comments. This was very enjoyable for me and taxing. I took a long time over the last few. Lots of lovely clues and many penny-drop moments. Thanks v much to the setter and to Senf.

  6. No problems today although I was grateful to have the checkers in place before having to commit to the spelling of 6d.
    16d was very clever and earns a place on the podium along with 9a & 18d – the latter because we’ve all met him!

    Thanks to the Sunday maestro for another excellent puzzle and to Senf for another excellent blog – I do hope Brief Encounter gets another outing on TV over Christmas.

  7. Great questioning made for a satisfying indoor workout on this chilly morning. Once again a couple of littluns delayed completion – 18a and parsing of 26d. 9a gets my prize vote. Thank you Virgilius and Senf.

  8. An enjoyable little tussle. Favourite 8d for smooth surface.
    Came here to check parsing of 17a as I believe Wellington said it was the nearest run thing – so hardly the last four letters.

    1. However, the last four letters occur frequently in the account of the battle available on Wikipedia (along with what Wellington is reputed to have said); so . . . ?

  9. First in were 1d and 10a. Just the kind of clue construction that I dislike the most.
    Thankfully there were no others to be found.
    Had to check 19a which was new to me and 22d which did ring a bell.
    20a had a strange sound to it so did Senf explanation but I think I receive statements of my investments also.
    Favourite 9a.
    Thanks to Virgilius and to Senf for the hints.

  10. Thanks to Senf who nearly got me over the line. Still stumped on 19a and I don’t understand the 4d so I probably have it wrong.

    1. 19a – initial letters (heads off) of third to sixth words of the clue.

      4d – single letter for miles and a two word term for a very long time (the answer, or variations of it, is becoming a ‘frequent flier’).

  11. Don’t normally do the Sunday puzzle but found the time today and thought it was excellent. Used the blog after completion to confirm a couple of answers, but agree with comments about “three” in 12a, even having the answer still couldn’t see it?. Understand it a bit more having seen RD comments? So pleased I made the effort today.

    Clue of the day 16d followed by quite a few more.

    Rating *** / ****

    Thanks to Senf and the setter.

  12. Made heavy weather of this excellent puzzle. Failure to parse 22d after putting carafe made me see the error of my ways and my bunged in answer was correct but a mere fluke. So another new word learnt. Difficult to choose a favourite clue amongst so many wonderful ones. I thought 9a, 18d were outstanding clues.

  13. I agree, Senf, about the benevolence if Virgilius, but for the bottom half only! I sweated bullets for the top half. I think I’m having a touch of the mushy brain syndrome right now.
    With such a plethora of great clues, choosing a fave is impossible.
    Thanks to Virgilius and to Senf, great start to my Sunday.

  14. A lot tougher than recent Sunday puzzles I thought, but an immensely enjoyable challenge.

    My ticked clues were 9a, 12a, 6d and 18d.

    Many thanks to Virgilius and to Senf.

  15. Another superb Sunday crossword! Slow start, but eventually I got going working upwards from the bottom of the grid. 20a was my favourite of many. Yes, I’ll go with Senf’s 3/5* rating.
    Thank you Virgilius, and also to Senf for the hints.

  16. I found this crossword easier than yesterday’s…which surprises me greatly as I normally need lots of hints for the Sunday puzzle. Wavelength thing I suppose.

    Had answers for 2d and 5d but needed the hints to reassure me that I was right.

    Many thanks to Virgilus for a very pleasant crossword and to Senf for his hints.

  17. Didn’t do so well today, many I could not parse, I didn’t understand the hints, I was far too dim.
    I had to resort to internet websites.
    Thanks all.

      1. Don’t. ** minutes of my life that are shall never get back. Absolute rubbish, can’t score, can’t defend.
        My inability the crossword was more to do with too much beer after the annual pre Christmas Texas scramble.

  18. I found this to be on the tricky side, especially in the SW corner. That said, my last one in was 28ac in the SE corner. The “three” in 12ac left me a little bemused, but never mind… Enjoyable as always from Virgilius.

  19. Took a while to get going because l wasn’t really concentrating, but **/**** seems about right to me. 16d was my favourite. Thanks to Virgilius, and of course Senf.

  20. Pretty quick although I did not parse 26d.
    Last two in were 9a and 4d. Needed to look up synonyms to get the former after which the latter quickly followed. No other hold ups. 20a 2 and 16d were favourites. Thanks to Virgilius and Senf for shedding light on the parsing of 26d.

  21. Arrived at this great crossword a day late. Found it a tad trickier than par for Virgenius. 16d probably clue of the month. Thanks for the fun and thanks Senf for the guidance on 9a which I needed.

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