ST 2969 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 2969

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2969

A full review by gnomethang

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This puzzle was published on 16th September 2018

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

Morning All! I seem to recall struggling with this on the flight to Portugal but that might have been the early start. It looked much less mysterious upon review!

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a           In ruling over nation, do this (6)
GOVERN – A hidden word IN rulin G OVER N ation.

4a           Phlegmatic as trading’s beginning in firm (6)
STOLID – The beginning of the word T(rade) inside SOLID for firm.

8a           Help going after profits that’s formally denied (8)
GAINSAID – A charade of GAINS (profits) and AID (help).

10a         Some Londoners, chaps that pull strings or are involved in rows (6)
BOWMEN  – A  triple definition – people form the BOW/East End of London, archers who pull bow strings and the oarsman rowing (in a row!) that is nearest the bows of the boat.

11a         Fancy women’s objective for that man (4)
WHIM – W for Women’s (As in WI for Women’s Institute) and then HIM – the accusative or objective case for that man.

12a         Unimportant false alarm I emit (10)
IMMATERIAL – An anagram (false) of ALARM I EMIT.

13a         Numerical superiority compared with nine, oddly (12)
PREDOMINANCE – Another anagram, this one indicated by ‘oddly’, of COMPARED and/with NINE

16a         What’s smashing about that reorganised spectacular (12)
BREATHTAKING – BREAKING for smashing around/about a reorganised anagram of THAT.

20a         Political skill, say, with naval requirements (10)
STATECRAFT – A charade of STATE/say and a CRAFT which is an obvious requirement for a naval fleet!

21a         Unfriendly complaint (4)
COLD – Two definitions, one emotional and the other medical.

22a         Good scope for adventurous opening (6)
GAMBIT – G for Good and an AMBIT or scope/range/purview.

23a         Issue about elderly relative being someone in altered state (8)
EMIGRANT – The state here is a country. Place EMIT/issue around your GRAN.

24a         Influenced by fashion or objective in taste (6)
TRENDY – END for aim/objective inside TRY/taste food.

25a         Ancient European cutting a metal (3-3)
AGE-OLD – Place E for European inside A GOLD (a metal).


1d           Caught her daughter hugging a farmworker (8)
GOATHERD – GOT for caught, HER form the clue and D for Daughter containing (hugging) A from the clue.

2d           Have no mercy, harbouring such spitefulness (5)
VENOM – Another hidden word which is harboured inside ‘ha VE NO M ercy’.

3d           Practical attitude is required in field of study (7)
REALISM – Place IS from the clue inside REALM/field of study/range/scope q.v. ambit!

5d           Live in grip of strongman from part of Asia (7)
TIBETAN – Another insertion: BE/live is inside/in the grip of a TITAN/strongman.

6d           Part of ship, see, wrecked at sea (5,4)
LOWER DECK – LO !for see and then an anagram (at sea) of WRECKED. Nice clue with two possible anagram indicators.

7d           Person in charge of records put together initially (6)
DEEJAY – The initials DJ are commonly used for a Disc Jockey and these are the phonetic spellings.

9d           Fiendish types are reportedly in gallery for show (11)
DEMONSTRATE – The fiendish types are DEMONS, then place R (a homophone reportedly of ‘are’), inside the TATE gallery.

14d         Not certain one piece of furniture turned up with another (9)
DEBATABLE – Reverse (turn up in a down clue) a BED for the first piece of furniture and then follow with a TABLE for the second.

15d         Prone but not flat (8)
INCLINED – Two definitions; the first means leaning towards a choice and the second refers to a hill/incline which is not flat ground.

17d         Agog with Conservative splitting left (7)
EXCITED – C for Conservative inside/splitting the word EXITED for left (a room).

18d         Faithfully donating — write article about it (7)
TITHING – The instruction from the setter is to write a THING/article around/about IT from the clue.

19d         View from Gibraltar, say, artist represented (6)
STRAIT – An anagram (represented) of ARTIST.

21d         What’s loaded aboard vehicle before journey (5)
CARGO – A CAR or vehicle before GO/journey/make a trip.           
Thanks to the setter and for crypticsue covering me whilst on my hols. I’ll see you all tomorrow.