Toughie 2202 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

Toughie 2202

Toughie No 2202 by proXimal

Hints and tips by Dutch

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

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

I enjoyed this – I much prefer proXimal when he is not as his most devious.

Definitions underlined as usual. The hints are intended to explain how the wordplay works, and you can reveal the answers by clicking on the ANSWER buttons. Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a    Global conspiracy theorists? (4-8)
FLAT-EARTHERS: Cryptic definition of people who perhaps are not thinking about the world in global terms

8a    Employing figures in modern ‘Elephant Man’ broadcast (7)
NUMERIC: A homophone (broadcast) of another word for modern or recent plus the surname of the person known as Elephant Man

9a    Deceit that French Resistance overcome (7)
CONQUER: A word for deceit or trick, the French word for that, and the abbreviation for resistance

11a    Free stable, presumably (7)
UNLOOSE: a verb paradoxically meaning to set free, and a word that would whimsically mean stable

12a    As Spooner says, spray split fruit (7)
ROSEHIP: Spoonerism of a word meaning to spray or to water plus a word meaning to split or to tear

13a    Thoroughly beat food preparation (5)
PASTE: Two meanings, the first to thrash, the second a smooth thick blended food

14a    Twice this writer’s discontented clientele after new approach (9)
IMMINENCE: Two ways of saying this writer’s (where the ‘S cleverly changes meaning), then the outer letters (dis-contented) of clientele following (after) the abbreviation for new

16a    Reported troubles after mechanical part pushes (9)
CAMPAIGNS: A homophone (reported) of troubles or sufferings comes after a mechanical part e.g. on a rotating shaft in a car engine

19a    Glut of gold in mine to the west (5)
GORGE: The heraldic name for the colour gold goes inside a reversal (to the west) of a slang word for mine or bomb

21a    Note male in milky white top (7)
OPTIMAL: A note on the sol-fa scale plus the abbreviation for male go inside (in) the name of a milky white colour derived from a gemstone

23a    Minor player starts to celebrate the draw (7)
EXTRACT: A minor player or actor, perhaps in a crowd scene, plus the first letters of (starts to) celebrate and the

24a    Find new steakhouse bar has rum (4,3)
SEEK OUT: An anagram (new) of STE(a)K(h)OU(s)E without the jumbled (rum) letters of HAS

25a    Strange men affect nurses (7)
FOREIGN: The abbreviation for some military men is contained within (nurses) a word meaning to affect or pretend

26a    Interested parties assume hospital mends girdles (12)
STAKEHOLDERS: A verb meaning mends by joining metal contains (girdles) a verb that can mean assume plus the abbreviation for hospital


1d    From up close, lame footballer misses, perhaps (7)
FEMALES: Reverse hidden (From up …)

2d    Aussie truck leaving Haute-Loire damaged vent (7)
AIRHOLE: An anagram (damaged) of HA(ute)-LOIRE without an informal word for an aussie pick-up truck

3d    Shunning Dutch artist that’s cut off appendage (9)
ESCHEWING: A Dutch graphic artist who liked impossible geometries without the last letter (that’s cut off) plus an appendage or limb that birds have

4d    Speedway competitor, perhaps, mounted on vehicle (5)
RACER: A reversal (mounted, in a down clue) of a short word meaning on or concerning plus a common vehicle

5d    Practical issue overseen by worker (5,2)
HANDS ON: An issue or offspring has above it (overseen by) a worker

6d    Mercury rising in French city makes you rasp (7)
ROUGHEN: The reversal (rising) of the chemical symbol for mercury goes inside (in) a French city

7d    Sinister in area, wary heading off (12)
INAUSPICIOUS: IN from the clue, the abbreviation for area, then a 10-letter word meaning wary without the first letter (heading off)

10d    Speaking for European, tense within group (12)
REPRESENTING: The abbreviation for European plus a verb tense go inside (within) a group or gang

15d    Expert fusses over dividing batter (9)
MASTERFUL: A reversal (over) of a word meaning fusses or worries goes inside (dividing) a word meaning batter or beat

17d    Pole keeps relationship most amicable (7)
MATIEST: A long wooden pole on a ship contains (keeps) a relationship or link

18d    Hold weapon close (7)
ARMLOCK: A generic 3-letter word for weapon plus a verb meaning to close with a key

19d    So, this musician might be construed as righteous (7)
GUTHRIE: An anagram of SO plus the answer (a folk musician) gives RIGHTEOUS

20d    Note expires after introduction of alternative cash (7)
READIES: A note on the sol-fa scale, plus a verb meaning expires following (after) the first letter (introduction of) alternative

22d    Fastening about to stop endlessly turning machine (5)
LATCH: The 1-lette r Latin abbreviation for about goes inside (to stop) a turning machine for shaping wood without the last letter (endlessly)

I enjoyed 3d, possibly because it involved one of my favourite artists, as well as 1d and 7d. Which were your favourite clues?

16 comments on “Toughie 2202

  1. I think 19d is more appropriate to Guthrie Senior – considered extremely righteous by certain types of people back in the day.

    Thanks for the blog and thanks to proX for an entertaining puzzle.

      1. No, it’s something of a cliche now but it’s good to give Woody a name-check and I hope that was proXimal’s intention.

  2. Re:1a Good to see Great A’Tuin again. I do miss the annual treat of a new Discworld novel from the late TP.
    Thanks to proXimal & Dutch.

  3. I had ‘flat-earthmen’ for 1a amongst a scant handful of entries after a long time trying to get established. In frustration I turned to Dutch’s review to discover the ‘correct’ ending which was sufficient to give me 6d which was enough to get me launched. Then, as I was nearing completion, I had ‘baste’ for 13a (which I think satisfies the double definition) and which, of course, rendered 7d impossible. At the moment my frustration is eclipsing my enjoyment of this, which for the most part, I thought was a very well crafted puzzle. Thanks to proXimal and Dutch.

  4. Sorry, finished all the puzzles this week but this was totally beyond me with only seven solved in the NE corner in way beyond (for me) 5* time. Disappointing end to the week as it gave no real enjoyment at all. Apologies because I know that a lot of thought must have gone into putting it together but wasted on me. Still, there is always next week!!

  5. Enjoyable puzzle – thanks to proXimal and Dutch. The clues I liked best were 25a and 1d.

  6. We also started off with BASTE for 13a which gave us all sorts of problems with 7d until we had a second look. Two interesting coincidences that we noted, 16a here and 1a in the Giovanni puzzle, and 21a here with 17a in yesterday’s Hudson.
    A nice level of challenge and good fun to solve.
    Thanks proXimal and Dutch.

  7. Back up and running after two days of no access to the blog.
    Found this one a tricky little number and can’t say with hand on heart that I really enjoyed it as a result.

    16a raised a smile as did Dutch’s portrayal of 26a.

    Thanks to proXimal and to Dutch for the blog.

  8. Great blog as always.
    The pics are entertaining.
    Always a sucker for a spoonerism. Once made hose rip wine. Was very nice. Sure Dutch would have approved.
    Keep it up.

  9. Is there a problem with Internet Explorer? Using that, I have got nothing but the bouncing balls since Thursday. Switched to Firefox today and was able to catch up without difficulty.

    1. I see from the comments on yesterday’s Toughie that others have had trouble accessing the site. I am having the same difficulties as before. Does anyone have an answer to this?

      1. Hi Mac,
        If you take a look at ‘Site Access’ in the ‘Recent Posts’ column you will see that you are not alone!

        1. Thank you. It now seems to have been sorted out, so thanks to Big Dave and anyone else who brought that about. Will I ever be able to understand these things?

Comments are closed.