ST 3070 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 3070 (Hints)


Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 3070 (Hints)

Hints and tips by Senf

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

A very good Sunday morning from Winnipeg, where, with my 186th Sunday blog, I have something of a milestone today – equal numbers of Virgilius and Dada puzzles blogged, 93 of each.

Keep staying safe everyone. 

Dada somewhat quirky this week generating some Hmms but no Groans – I counted seven anagrams (five of which were partials), two lurkers (one reversed, not hinted but it’s an oldie but goodie), and no homophones – all in a symmetric 28 clues, with 16 hints ‘sprinkled’ throughout the grid you should be able to get the checkers to enable the solving of the unhinted clues.

Candidates for favourite – 1a, 7d, 9d, and 21d.

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

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

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:


1a It helps manoeuvres in crazy naval game (11)
An anagram (manoeuvres) of IT HELPS contained by (in) a synonym of crazy.

11a Country manor as elaborate, in parts (3,6)
IN from the clue inserted into (parts) an anagram (elaborate) of MANOR AS.

12a Many lads initially captivated by lady (9)
The first letter (initially) of Lads contained (captivated) by a (titled) lady (such as the one illustrated below).

14a Only a little relief for terrorist, shot (6)
The (forward) lurker (only a little) found in the rest of the clue.

16a Queen in frenzy having lost lead — charge! (8)
HM’s regnal cypher inserted into (in) a synonym of frenzy with its first letter removed (having lost lead).

20a Capital seemed unpleasantly cold, looking westward (6)
A three letter synonym of seemed and a three letter term for unpleasantly cold all reversed (looking westward).

24a Resolve to hug new head (9)
An anagram (new) of TO HUG and one of the geographical types of head.

28a Yellow flower existing with cherry (4-7)
A four letter flower, an adjectival synonym of existing, and (with) a generic term for cherry as a colour.


2d Something rolled in gold for so long (5)
An item which is rolled (in games) contained by (in) the chemical symbol for gold.

5d Big fine (8)
A double definition – the second describes appearance.

7d Insect main issue when bats come out? (7,6)
An insect, what is sometimes referred to as the main, and a male issue (offspring).

8d Vehicles requiring some time to catch terrible Russian (8)
An abbreviated form of some time (but less than an hour) containing the name of the first Tsar of Russia who had the nickname of Terrible.

15d Steering mechanism rates extraordinarily beautiful work (4,4)
A three letter steering mechanism and an anagram (extraordinarily) of RATES.

19d Show two under bottom of gravestone in old burial site? (7)
A synonym of show followed by the Latin numeral for two placed after (under) the last letter (bottom) of gravestonE.

21d Might one be going for gold teeth, almost all being rotten? (7)
An anagram (being rotten) of TEETH and ALl with the last letter removed (almost).

25d Best books in central Greece (5)
The abbreviated form of a collective term for books inserted into (in) the central letters of GrEEce.

Could new readers please read the Welcome post and the FAQ before posting comments or asking questions about the site.

As this is a Prize crossword, please don’t put any ANSWERS, whether WHOLE, PARTIAL or INCORRECT, or any ALTERNATIVE CLUES in your comment.

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Something different this week, written in 1956 by Renato Carosene, Tu vuo’ fa’ l’americano (You want to be an American) – only the music here, a combination of jazz and swing, but the song is generally considered to be a satire of the Americanization that occurred in the early years after World War II, when southern Italy was still a rural, traditional society.  The lyrics are about an Italian who affects a contemporary American lifestyle, drinking whisky and soda, dancing to rock ‘n roll, playing baseball and smoking Camel cigarettes, but who still depends on his parents for money!  Played by Nuova Orchestra Scarlatti conducted by Beatrice Venezi, with a very good clarinet solo:


120 comments on “ST 3070 (Hints)

  1. Found this one quite a tricky little number, my last one in being 16a where I hadn’t thought of that sort of charge! I think we’ve debated 26a on a previous occasion but I still say that I wouldn’t use it to imply ‘immediately’.
    The image conjured up by 8d made me laugh and I rather liked the ‘terrifying blow’ in 9d but my favourite was 1a which took me back to schooldays. Have to say it was then just a case of drawing out a grid on a scrap of paper – that’s a very ‘posh’ one shown in today’s illustration!

    Thanks to Senf for the hints and the quite unusual choice of music – congratulations on reaching another milestone.

        1. I don’t personally like the definition at all but still suspect you may have the wrong final word in 26a.

          1. Thank you Jane – penny has just dropped. I had 3 possibilities in mind, none of which were right but see it now & agree – don’t care for it either. Fully worthy of a Senfian hmmn in my book.

      1. There are circles where 26a is a well known expression for doing something immediately. Hopefully that avoids the naughty stair, further elaboration might not.

        1. Worry not, LROK, some of us are still there from yesterday so it’s still a bit crowded on the stair.

          1. Surely you only get one day on there or is the tariff higher for repeat offenders?
            In answer to your question of yesterday hopefully there isn’t a 3 strikes & out rule.

      2. We’ve had this one recently and I looked it up then in a few online Thesauruses ( Thesauri?). I had previously heard the term used in paying one’s dues promptly but not in the sense of 26a in this puzzle nor in the sense of the clue a few months ago. You are obviously right, Huntsman and it was interesting to read Cryptic Sue’s remark about finding it in Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase and Fable also. Maybe it’s a regional thing. They often catch me out. Perhaps I should invest in the same dictionary or try to find it online, since I’m running out of bookshelf!

        1. I don’t understand the problem people have had with it and I don’t think it is a regional expression. If you Google it, it comes up in idioms from the Free Dictionary with this (correct in my opinion) definition. It is often used in connection with paying ones debts on time.

  2. A nicely challenging puzzle with the usual wily and quirky clues from Dada. The SW corner held me up a bit but I managed to finish in 2.5* time and with a great deal of enjoyment (4*). Both 28a and 7d were really good clues but I am still at a loss about the parsing of 26a. Many thanks to Senf for the hints and to Dada for an entertaining puzzle.

    1. Chriscross
      For me 26a is a double definition. A three word expression in UK for doing something immediately (US it is different but as it’s Sunday can’t say what) and where one might hang a picture.

        1. Quite right. I have just realised that whilst not regional it may not be used over the Pond.

  3. I thought this fairly gentle puzzle lacked some of Dada’s usual sparkle. 1.5/2.5*. There seemed to me to be quite a bit of deja vu (e.g. 2d, 4d, 5d 10a, 23a and 26a all seem to have appeared recently with similar clues) . Not sure about the synonym for one of the words in 18a if that how it is constructed. Can’t say anymore here.

    I did like 28a.

    Thanks to Dada and Senf.

    1. I am glad someone else paused over 18a because although I have an answer I cannot really reconcile it!

      1. You will have the right answer I’m sure. Nothing wrong with the word but it sounds odd as a plural.

  4. 3*/4*. I found this challenging in parts. I had a couple of minor hmms but overall this was good fun with 7d my favourite and 1a in second place.

    Many thanks to Dada and to Senf.

  5. Prior to a “Full English” this was looking a tad hard, but clearly the bacon, black pudding, egg, mushrooms and tomato rejuvenated jaded brain cells and the remaining three-quarters was completed in reasonable time.

  6. Tough but fun. However, not helped by the iPad version showing a different clue for 5d (big and hot) which was much more difficult than the paper clue (I’m assuming the one in the hints is from the paper). Needed the excellent hints for finish the puzzle and explain some of the more esoteric clues such as 16a. Thankful for the surfeit of anagrams!
    Thx to all

  7. Hard but just possible with electronic help and plenty of checkers. Parsing was easier but hitting on the word was much more difficult, for instance 19d.

    Thanks to Dada and Senf.

  8. The clue for 7 down on digital is ” Insect main issue – over time? (7,6)” whereas you are showing “Insect main issue when bats come out” which is easier.

    1. You’re not kidding Richard – the second bit took me a while to twig. The digital clue is the better one in my view.

      1. Now 7d was a s——y one I DID get ! (I am terrified of the naughty step but you know what I mean)

    2. That’s two clues changed from the electronic, both made easier in my view.
      I seem to recall the other week that clues from the electronic were changed to be harder in the dead wood edition.
      I took both for a long time & my view was six of one & half a dozen of the other.

  9. Pretty tricky but thankfully for me an absence of his pesky 4 letter homophones that I struggle with so an unaided, fully parsed finish in a respectable time. Thought 16&18a plus 17d were the 3 tough ones in a thoroughly enjoyable challenge. Admired the smooth surface of 2d but like RD 1a & 7d were my favourites.
    With thanks both to Dada & Senf.

  10. Took a while to get started but once underway (or is it under weigh?) enjoyed fathoming it all. West yielded first. Hmm to 26a and to truncation in 25d. Several natty clues with 20a, 23a and 28a outstanding. Thank you Dada and Senf.

    1. Angellov, I understand “under weigh” was the correct form years ago. It came from the nautical term to weigh anchor and get a ship moving. Today, it is definitely “under way”.

  11. Some good clues today but i would have never got 7d from the digital version – made no sense at all. The rest wasn’t too bad though. I too used to play 1a in my youth, good fun. Thanks to Dada and Senf.

  12. I liked this one – kept giving bit-by-bit. Just right for a lazy Sunday morning. Fav was 7d.

  13. Completed in the early hours, with the doors wide open on what promises to be another beautiful day. 16A was my last one in and became top of my picks when I parsed it. 23A and 28A also made my list. Thanks Dada and Senf.

  14. To respond primarily to Brian and Richard Morris, I use the DT Puzzle Web Site and experience has shown that there may or may not be clue variations between the DT Puzzle Web Site and the dead tree version and there may not or may be clue variations between the DT Puzzle Web Site and other electronic platforms. So, when I am solving and blogging between 00:01 and 03:00 hours (approximately) UK time on a Sunday morning I have only one source to work with. Then, like other bloggers, I rely on commenters to politely point out the clue variations if and when they arise. When, as sometimes occurs, there are two (completely) different clues I will amend the blog but with today’s ‘variations’ I don’t consider that to be necessary.

    1. Senf,
      I think the differing clues interesting & know CL has commented in the past as to why it occurs. I presume the electronic version the elements that can be prepared well in advance, like the puzzles are. Subsequent editing / improvement may then occur.
      However I would be interested what your hint would have been if the electronic version for 7d:
      “Big and hot.” hadn’t been changed.

      1. 5d (not your Oops of 7d) – still a double definition with an indication that the second part is a slang term.

      2. Senf, don’t trouble yourself thanks its OK I see it now, not for the first time today I was barking up the wrong tree

  15. Middle difficulty Dada for me. Very enjoyable challenge. 16a LOI as I just couldn’t see the frenzy synonym for ages.
    19d COTD as it brought back memories of visits in happier times where when you got back, rather than going into quarantine, you bored the pants off everybody with 35mm slides.
    Thank you Dada for the pleasure and Senf for the hints.

  16. This was tricky and it took me a long time to break into it. I managed to finish but I found it a struggle all the way. Of course, it would be a dull world if all puzzles were straight forward and solvable. Having said all that, it was a fun puzzle with some clever clues that needed thought. I liked 8d and my COTD is 7d.

    Thank you for the challenge, Dada and of course many thanks to Senf for the hints.

    Hudson did something last night he hasn’t before. I put his lead on to bring him home from the field after his walk and he gently reached up and took the other end of the lead. He then trotted by my side all the way home with the lead in his mouth.

    1. Steve
      You ought to be pleased, shows he trusts you to find your own way home without his help.

    2. “Just going for a walk, Master!

      When I work out how to post a picture I will do so. :sad:

        1. I’ve never discovered how to use any of my own pics either but I’m sure someone will tell us. CS does (her photo in the NTSPP review today are her own flowers – not being specific as others may not have finished yet (and I should think they could be a while!) and the 2K’s do sometimes as well.

          1. The museum picture is mine too – an amazing table made of iron at the Coalbrookdale Museum of Iron

            I just copy photos saved on my computer to the Word draft of my blog in the same way as I use images from Google Images. I have no idea how you insert photographs into blog comments, far too technical for me

          2. I change my pics from time to time but I really have no idea how I do it! I struggle to put them in, then all of a sudden I find I’ve pressed the right button and it worked. Problem is, I never know how I’ve done it and go through it all again the next time!

  17. I found this a mixture of some very good clues and others which were quite difficult to parse. My favourite was 7d but I think 16a is technically wrong and therefore misleading. The first part of the clue is clever, parses correctly and gives the answer. The definition, however, does not equate to that answer if my memory serves me correctly. Thanks to Dada and to Senf for the blog – 186 not out!

    1. I agree, the answer to 16a does not accord with the last part of the clue … that is measured in another unit, named after an 18th century French physicist.

  18. Have just watched the Nuova Orchestra/Beatrice Venezi video which is great. (Feel BV’s dress might be a bit precarious if she were too energetic!). By the way perhaps you know, Senf, there is another fun video of the Renato Carozene US whisky & soda piece performed by Hetty and the Jazzato Band.

  19. I was very gung ho going into this and Then came to a grinding halt over the last half a dozen. Read the hints (do you really do them at silly o’clock in the morning – what dedication) and managed to finish sitting with a glass of sherry in my Cambridgeshire garden with spitfires from Duxford performing over my head. Takes me back to dancing on top of the chicken shed in Banstead in 1940s. Dull and cloudy but not cold, late up after a bad night, had a cooked breakfast but without the yummy black pudding mentioned earlier. But I digress congratulations Senf, and thanks to Dada for making the grey cells work. Huntsman – one all, sporty and flowery.

    1. Solving and hinting at six in the evening my time accompanied by a single malt or a Mouton Cadet.

      1. I take it whatever you had for this one, Senf it had to be a good one to celebrate your milestone.

      1. Dang blats, you’re right. I hope Huntsman is keeping a tally for me. Although to be fair even I could get 21d there is no specialised inside knowledge there like knowing about wedges and slips and so on.

    2. Daisygirl, the truly “yummy” black puddings were those I ate on the number 35 bus going home on a Wednesday evening after Rugby practice. My route to the bus-stop took me through the bi-weekly market and the last vendor was the Bury Black Pudding stall which had outside two large cauldrons with the horseshoe-shaped puddings churning like frolicking otters in the boiling water (‘elf-n-safety, wozzat?). Two, slit open with lashings of English mustard, laid on greaseproof paper and wrapped in newsprint, were greedily eaten on the top deck of the bus, using fingers and the supplied wooden spoon. The remains went into the waste bin by the boarding platform at the rear when I disembarked.

      1. Oh delicious. I was introduced to black pudding in Maastricht at carnival time – fried slices of apple with BP on top for breakfast after a night on the town. But top of the bus sounds great as well!

      2. Grandad Emm (mother’s side of the family) was a butcher in Ashington back in the 60’s I used to help him in the shop both with sweeping up and distributing sawdust on the floor also making Black Puddings in a large zinc tub.
        Don’t tell Elf and Safety as they didn’t exist then but the same zinc tub came home at the end of the day to bath the bairns (Sister and I)

    3. Think we’ll have to start a weekly tally Daisy. Hope the knee is a wee bit better – my poorly back has put paid to any golf this weekend so am grumpier than usual.

      1. Try just going for a walk without being saddled with a great big heavy bag of sticks and swinging your back in an unnatural way. Fresh air and exercise just as the Good Lord intended. You can still drop into the 19th hole for a drink at the end. See how my sporting knowledge is expanding. 19th hole! Where did that come from. (Try rubbing in some embarkation!)

          1. Yes I know. It’s actually a family joke. The clerk to our parish council (appointed in 1934 mind you I am going back some years) was full of Malapropisms. He once announced that sadly an ex councillor had died of an emblemism, told us we had to think of our ancestors who came after us and regularly advised embarkation for painful joints! I could go on – I used to note them all! Lovely man known as Tadpole.

              1. I do like a good Malapropism although Spoonerisms still defeat me more often than not.

  20. A powerful electrical storm knocked everything out here, including the internet, just as I was about to comment, but my mind was already blown, alas. I did not fare well with Dada today: couldn’t solve 1a (never heard of the gizmo), nor could I complete the top parts of the puzzle. I thought the rest of the grid quite good, though, especially the whole SE corner and 28a. I also enjoyed the two long vertical clues on the sides. This is probably the worst I’ve ever done with a Dada–it must be the pandemic finally getting the best of me. With electronic aid, I did manage to finish, with thanks to Senf (and congratulations on his milestone) and to Dada. 4*/4*

    1. Oh dear, you missed out on a quite enchanting schooldays form of entertainment – although never done on a gizmo as pictured, just a pencil and paper sketch. I think the actual game had rather more words than those given in the answer to1a but it was certainly fun, especially when it came to sinking the little ones!

      1. A variant on normal 1a involved a pencil which could move around the field of play by making a series of dashes – – – – – – – – – until a new firing point was established. The “shot” was made by putting finger on the rubber end of the pencil and pressing down until the pencil made a streak across the paper. There were strict rules about trying to steer the pencil and much poring over how far the resultant marks went and whether they intersected the target.

      2. I remember so well playing the game at school, but I can’t remember the game at all! Strange that as we played it by the hour.

      3. Chacun a son gout, eh, Jane? We benighted Americans…sorry I missed out on 1a. And thanks, John, for adding to my storehouse of knowledge.

      1. Great to read. Hasn’t the site grown in popularity judging by the volume of comments typically posted on an average day. I’m sure there are DT readers who try their hand at the crosswords who are unaware of the site and have always thought the paper could maybe give it a plug. If only the Guardian had something similar.

          1. It’s nowhere near as good as BD though Sue because it just gives you answer & explains the wordplay. Friday’s Notabilis Toughie for example was fun to complete (& still no gimme for the likes of me) with the aid of Dutch’s hints.

        1. I wonder if the site has grown so much because people have had more time in their hands during lockdown. As you say it is very noticeable how many new names we are seeing.

          1. I think you are correct, Daisygirl. This blog grew because of lockdown. Folk had more time to spend on the DT backpager. In fact, some new members have said as much. They only took up cryptic crosswords to pass the time during lockdown. Personally, I welcome it but I do agree with an earlier post that the DT could give a little help to this blog by giving us a mention every now and then.
            All the more the merrier! 👍

  21. I think this is the hardest I’ve ever completed. 17d and 16a needed a lot of electronic help. Still good workout I suppose. Thanks to Dada and Senf for excellent hints.

  22. ****/***. I found this difficult to finish without help. I liked the 4 long perimeter clues but couldn’t see 18a and 19d. Thanks to the setter and Senf for the hints.

  23. Tricky enough for me today.
    I had the wrong frenzy in 16a – dim – but it made working out the ‘why’ bit pretty much impossible.
    Even thought it’s to do with the game I don’t understand (and daren’t mention as it’s in the answer) I really liked 7d.
    Spent far too long trying to fit a ‘B’ into 25d somehow but eventually saw the light.
    I liked 23a – my “should-have-been-son-in-law by now” but for the blasted pandemic was a Royal Marine Commando – he says that it’s an acronym. M[uscles] A[re] R[equired] I[ntelligence] N[ot] E[ssential].
    Enough – I’m rambling now, just for a change.
    My favourite was 28a as it was one of my Dad’s much used expressions.
    Thanks to Dada and to Senf.

  24. did this in two halves Pre and post a trip out with Mama Bee to visit the patisserie for macarons. Top half largely done before the trip with bottomhalf showing quite a few gaps. 26a LOI as I had made the same mistake with the last word but discussions above put me on the right lines.
    Thanks to Senf and Dada and also congrats on your anniversary.
    I have been showing up at a few of Paul/Dada’s zoom chats about his guardian puzzles but my antediluvian laptop doesn’t zoom well. I wonder why his Dada offerings are not mentioned Has CL banned discussion of his Telegraph offerings because they are prize puzzles? although he has discussed Guardian prize puzzles in the past or was that back in the no prize lockdown?
    Probably answered my own question there

    1. His Guardian crosswords are normally very tough I find. I spent 3 days on & off on his Prize puzzle of last week & didn’t get much beyond halfway. Much prefer him as Dada whether Toughie or back page.

      1. Me too, they do seem to be another level and I rarely have time to devote to them after all the fine puzzles here. As well as the setters style there is a publishers style too. I am getting on top of Telegraph and Indy but Guardian and Times and FT are still a bit too hard for me.

        1. Paul in the Guardian is way above my solving levels, often I don’t even understand the hints on 225!

  25. Tough little number today with Dada in a much more quirky mood for this puzzle. ***/*** for me today. Found the bottom part of the puzzle the most troublesome and time consuming. Easiest clues were 1a and 26a for me as they were first in and then things slowed right down.
    COTD candidates 1a, 16a, 26a, 7d & 9d winner 7d

    Thanks to Dada and to Senf for the much needed hints today

  26. I agree with comments concerning different wording of clues in paper and electronic versions. I find this difference unforgivable. However, the hints from Senf alerted me to these variations – thank goodness! For once I managed to complete 90% of the puzzle without reference to the ever useful hints. Thanks to Senf and all bloggers.

  27. I feel rather smug as I found this pretty straightforwardand lacking I worked
    Quirkiness. Favourite amongst many was 26a. Many thanks to Dada and Senf. I’ll try Saturday’s now as I didn’t have time yesterday.

    1. Taylor,
      I hope your predication last Monday about the dog was pessimistic. My fingers have been crossed for you.

          1. Taylor
            So sorry isn’t adequate. At least the good times will be with you for ever to look back on.

        1. So sorry to hear that, Taylor. They give us so much love and it is hard when they leave.
          I also lost two dogs in one year and the loss of two pals is hard.

          1. I’ve still got the young boys 5 and 3, but of course they’re not the young boys any more.

        2. Taylor, so sorry to hear that. I’m totally focused on our furry friends, it’s such a shame that we have them for such a short time. Godspeed pal!

  28. I can’t remember ever finishing a Dada puzzle, today is no different, I had three or four unsolved. I confess I had to use e-help copiously, so it wasn’t all my own work. The most difficult was the SW corner. I solved the first word of 7d and missed the second. I bunged in 26a, have no idea if it’s right. A long time since we saw the old priest. 18a what?? And so on.
    I don’t think I’ll ever get on Dada’s wavelength, I just try to solve as many as I can and disembark before reaching my destination.
    Thanks to Dada, endless thanks to Senf for taking me to the final leg of my journey. I’m off to the pool as I believer we may get a bit wet in the next few days.

  29. That was tricky, but enjoyable. Lots of the usual misdirection, though I thought 16a was a measurement of current, is that the same as charge??
    Thanks all.

  30. V late getting round to Saturday and Sunday’s crossword. Saturday went in like grease lightning. Sunday, after a quick start ground to a halt in the SW corner, but got there in the end. V happy to find the Toughie available on the iPad app weekdays.

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