ST 3094 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 3094 (Hints)

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 3094 (Hints)

Hints and tips by Senf

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

A very good Sunday morning from Winnipeg where, after yesterday’s Six Nations Matches, I am considering investigating my French ancestry further so that I may change my sporting allegiances.

Keep staying safe everyone. 

After last week’s ‘Dada Toughie,’ I think he has returned to near benevolence today.  I counted five anagrams (three partials), two lurkers (both reversed), and no homophones – all in a slightly asymmetric 27 clues, with 15 hints ‘sprinkled’ throughout the grid you should be able to get the checkers to enable the solving of the unhinted clues.

Candidates for favourite – 12a, 21a, 23a, and 15d.

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 Sino-Tibetan turn of phrase (6)
An anagram (turn) of PHRASE.

10a Range sent back, somewhat bizarre I see (6)
One of the reverse lurkers (sent back, somewhat) found in three words in the clue – the other reverse lurker, not hinted by me, is 2d.

12a Give old teacher a gun for ultimate war (10)
A single word for give . . . a gun, a synonym of old, and a (university) teacher.

13a Rogue channel out to catch me — spam! (8,4)
An anagram (rogue) of CHANNEL OUT containing (to catch) ME from the clue.

16a Nitwit, a centrist struggling to impress supporter (12)
An anagram (struggling) of A CENTRIST containing (to impress) the well known three letter supporter.

21a 25 Across, short implement knocked over (4)
A (domestic) implement with the last letter removed (short) and reversed (knocked over).

23a US lawman requiring perfect listening device (8)
The US lawman who was a Deputy Marshal in Tombstone, Arizona followed by (requiring) a verbal synonym of perfect.

25a Model remade well! (4,2)
An anagram (model) of REMADE.


1d Assault over, start (6,2)
A double definition – the second relates to music beginning.

3d Down in perfect time (7)
While this may ‘light up’ the repetition radar, we now need a nounal synonym of perfect and a synonym of time.

6d Exercise in demolishing of dessert, one going fast (9)
The two letter abbreviation for (school) exercise inserted into (in) an anagram (demolishing) of DESSERT.

7d Fish has to dry up (6)
TO from the clue and a synonym of dry (relating to wine?) all reversed (up).

15d Little bit cross, writer in stitches, oddly (8)
The single letter that can represent a cross and a three letter ‘writer’ all inserted into (in) the odd letters of StItChEs.

17d An Italian poet moving quite slowly (7)
AN from the clue and an Italian poet.

21d Different native shunning principal (5)
A synonym of native (new to me) with the first letter removed (shunning principal).

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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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Alan Lancaster, co-founder and bass guitarist of Status Quo, is 72 today.  This is the group’s only UK number one from 1974 (I am discounting the collaboration with Manchester United FC from 1994):

77 comments on “ST 3094 (Hints)

  1. Wonderful Sunday puzzle again; 3*/5* for me with favourites 23A & 24A. Thanks again to a great setter

  2. A lovely solve.
    Also, having got into cryptic crosswords during lockdown, my first hat-trick (solving Fri Sat and Sun puzzles without assistance)! Well chuffed

    1. Nice one! Until I found this site I struggled to finish one cryptic crossword per week now I’m up to three a day! In fact during the lockdown and on top of the dailies I have had to resort to old puzzles & and I am now wending my way through the DT 2006 back copies…sad but true.

      1. Three a day! Blimey, I limit myself to one, otherwise I don’t get anything done. You must be a whiz.

        1. I do the Ft, the Dt, the Toughie & the quickie pus the codeword. A whizz? No just too much time on my hands due to the lockdown ( The furthest I’ve been in the last 14 months is for a 4 night stay at the QMC hospital – deep joy). If we could see our grandchildren under normal circumstances then I would be down to the DT bp!

          1. I do the quick, the cryptic and the sudoku, 2 puzzles on my 5 puzzle app, kakuro and killer sudoku, 3 puzzles in the i, one daily jigsaw, 20 minutes of podcast Spanish. I also do Tuesday and Wednesday toughie over the whole week.
            I hope they let us out soon.

            1. Now that is impressive! If we’re let out in the spring then I look forward to sitting in the garden solving crosswords & sipping a libation of my choice while watching my 3 grandchildren going feral. bliss!

          2. Me too! Our 4 year old granddaughter decided to give us a “roller coaster ride” from the top of the house to the bottom, three stories on FaceTime. Not very pleasant! She’s easier to control in person.
            In the plus side, here in Nottingham it’s stopped snowing and
            and I,m catching up with the cricket.

  3. What a terrifically enjoyable and witty Dada, beginning with 1a and ending with 15d: one cleverly simple, the other a masterpiece of invention. Other favourites: 8, 10, 20, 23a; 7d. 21d is especially interesting–i.e., if I correctly interpreted the ‘principal’ (?). Thanks to Senf, whose hints I’ll read now, and to Dada. One of his best. ** / *****

    1. I hadn’t heard of that as a synonym of native without the land. I hope I’ve not stepped on the booby trap there.

  4. A pleasantly thought-provoking puzzle, which I very much enjoyed (3*/5*). 20a was amusing and 12a was both amusing and well constructed but the sly misdirection made15d my COTD. Thanks to Senf for the hints. My husband watched the 6 Nations Franc v England match and is investigating his Welsh ancestry! Thanks to Dada for another entertaining crossword.

      1. I stand corrected. He tells me it was England v Scotland and France v Italy. I don’t warch rugby or football but his distress at England’s performance was palpable. Apparently our latest score in the cricket didn’t meet with his approval either. Hence the muttered words about his Welsh-speaking grandparents.

        1. Possibly the worst England performance for a decade although the Scots played well. I do wish Jones would stop the kicking game, it just gives the opposition cheap ball.

          1. I fully concur, Brian. Kicking away possession has always been one of my pet hates. I don’t think Farrell had a good day as Captain, but it’s no excuse for the poor discipline, or more importantly for the poor handling of the ball. As I said yesterday, the Scots deserved to win. The scoreline didn’t reflect how well they outplayed us.

            1. Your comment went into moderation as you used a different alias, the third in three comments, all should work from now on.

  5. I would have to rate this at ***/**** solely because I needed two bites at the cherry. I pencilled in the wrong first word for 20a, which slowed my solving of the rest of the SW, but I got there in the end.

    I too had marked 21d as an “umm”, being unaware of that meaning of native, but the more I think about it, the more obvious it becomes.

    Many thanks to Dada and Senf.

  6. A nice little challenge for a Sunday morning.
    Not sure of the breakdown of 9d (any direction welcome) but the rest were fairly straightforward!
    Thanks to Dada and Senf.

    Wishing everyone a happy and relaxing Sunday!

  7. Sorry I really disliked this puzzle. Too many weird clues. Don’t understand the answer to 24a and I felt 8a and 19d were very poor clues. 10a was just plain clumsy.
    Not that difficult once you have found the definition amongst the verbiage.
    Felt this was somewhat sub-standard for a Sunday.
    Thx for the hints

    1. I was looking for a person in 8a so that completely stumped me. I had the answer for 24a, but couldn’t figure out why until later. When the penny drops, it’s fairly obvious.

  8. I could cut and paste Robert’s comment as I found the same delights. 15d was a clear fave. 16a might have joined it if the right supporter had found its way into my fodder first time (I have several circles of letters to play with before I found the right one) what a 16a I am!
    I have 7d tastes but a 13a wallet so I will probably make do with 5d to eat today.
    Thanks to Senf and Dada

  9. Had four bites at this one, but got there in the end.
    An enjoyable tussle.
    Thanks to Senf for hints, and to Dada for stretching my brain.

  10. If this was dada being benevolent, I’m having a very off day. ***/*** It certainly gave my remaining brain cells a work out. I don’t understand 9d either but I will have to wait for the full review. Rather a lot of old fashioned exclamations in here too. Favourite 3d. Thanks to all.

    1. Ditto from Boston… hints for 9d will be rewarded with our new “Crispy Mister” breakfast sandwich in the naughty corner (and maybe some red ink from our leader).

      Grateful Dead Fans

      Mr & Mrs T

    2. I understand 9d but not 24a.
      I’m going to have to be patient which does not come naturally to me.

    3. The BRB would, perhaps indirectly, suggest that the first part of the 9d answer is a synonym of great and further on-line research would suggest that it has been previously used in puzzles. But, I have to say that I do not remember seeing it before today – however with my memory that is not saying much.

        1. I looked up the first part of 9d in the Chambers Crossword Dictionary (the little brother of the BRB) and synonyms like ‘ace’ and ‘wizard’ were put forward amongst other synonyms that I was more familiar with.

  11. Had a few of those infamous ‘hmm’ moments with this one, such as the ‘I say’ in 24a and the definition of 15d – haven’t heard of it being called that before today.
    My favourite was probably 3d.

    Thanks to Dada and to Senf for the hints and music. I was surprised to learn that Status Quo only achieved one UK No.1 – thought ‘Rockin’ all over the world’ would have been another. We live and learn!

  12. Just goes to show it’s all about wavelength. Breezed through last week’s apparent tough one but made very hard work (well a complete pig’s ear really) of this one. Struggled from the outset as evidenced by the fact the 1a anagram only dawned on me near the very end of a ******time finish. The SE was the main problem largely due to bunging in the incorrect last 4 letters in 23a (fitted the definition but damn all to do with the wordplay) & then taking an age to clock the error. A little surprised nobody has mentioned 14d where I thought the synonym somewhat tenuous. Anyway an excellent crossword with 15d the comfortable winner. Today’s albums: a double dose of Van – Keep it Simple & Keep Me Singing.
    Thanks to Dada & to Senf

      1. Is it me Hoofs or has the Everyman grown teeth over the last few weeks ? Must be a new setter

        1. Hi Huntsman. I think our Everyman has a more delicious sense of humour today than he/she usually reveals. Anyway, I laughed a lot and really enjoyed it. (16a is especially funny.)

          1. Agreed. It was my pick too. I thought it was a cracker & the last couple of weeks have been pretty good too.

    1. Loved your comment in brackets concerning 23a. If I had a penny for every time I’ve done exactly the same thing, I’d be a wealthy woman!

    2. How is the earache Huntsman? I have just posted very longwinded details of an old wives remedy for earache which
      has stood me and my family and friends in good stead for many years – but I posted it on yesterday’s blog! If you want to
      try the salt bag, go back and check it out!

      1. No better no worse DG. All I’ll say is that it was a minor miracle yesterday that the contents of a bowl of Shredded Wheat & milk in the left hand & a cup of coffee in the right weren’t deposited on the living room carpet as I made my way from kitchen to dining room table & the world started spinning. Brought back memories of over indulgence in yesteryear……
        Will check out the cure. Thanks.

  13. This took some prising open, especially as I interpreted Sino-Tibetan as to do wholly with languages so put in another answer for 1 ac! So LOI is 3 down. A few Hmmm moments but all fair as far as I am concerned. The Grey Matter needs a challenge.

    Thanks Dada and Senf.

  14. Lovely, challenging puzzle. Dada has Sunday spot on.
    Took me ages to get the 11a, 1d combination.
    Loved the misdirection on 15d.
    Thanks Dada and Senf

  15. Loved it, 2*/4*. Held up by assuming 21a was a two word answer with 25a! D’oh!! Also checked google for the last 6 letters of 12a being an old teacher. Double D’oh!! Too many ggod clues to choose a favourite. Thanks to Dada and Senf.

  16. Glad so many enjoyed this. I found it difficult with what I call very unfriendly clueing. Don’t care if I got the answers right but the words all fitted in and I can make a good case for their rightness.

    After the awful England v Scotland I didn’t think things could get worse but tuning into BBC4 at 9.00 p.m. for the continental crime suspenser I found it was the Sicilian dwarf’s two hour comedy spot. The only thing left to do was to reach for the Highland Park.

    Thanks to Senf and Dada.

  17. Good fun, plenty of concise clues and nicely entertaining for a bitterly cold Shropshire morning. 1a was my top clue with 3d as a runner up. Thanks Dada and Senf.

  18. I am with the group who found this much harder than last Sunday – the reason I love cryptic puzzles is that you know, usually when you have the right answer. I can’t do the Quickie as there are too many choices of 4 letter animals, say. But today there are several answers I am not at all sure of, 24a being just one example. Anyway its kept me busy on a horrid, very windy day. Thanks to all.

    1. 24a was my last but one answer – the definition is ‘smelt bad’. You need one of the two colours of wine which contains (bottles) a short expression which I’ve never actually heard anyone say but could be seen in a cartoon if someone sees something that alarms them (I say).

      1. Thanks Kath, that is my answer too, but I think the three middle letters are a bit weird, I’ve never heard anyone say that either.

      2. Thanks for that, Kath. Manders said it perfectly, and today I found so many where I had the answer but had no idea why.

      3. My little niece many years ago when she was very young let out a yelp of horror approximating that when she saw a big spider *** croomster. She only had a limited vocabulary so we all thought it a perfect word & from that point creepy crawlies were always so called.

  19. Well I’m Dada’s biggest fan but I couldn’t do this at all. Did I he pull it out a drawer marked 1950s!
    Used the hints but haven’t finished it yet. I’ve probably got enough to finish it by Tuesday. It will certainly provide a challenge.
    Thanks to Senf and Dada.

  20. Managed to finish this (with 21a last in) just in time for the rugby and it was a real pleasure – thank you Dada and Senf. Come on Wales!

  21. On a first read through I got one answer. Then suddenly the top half fell into place but the bottom took longer to solve. I thought the native was an oyster! To much good living and not enough 13a. Anyway it all fell into place, George glued to the TV again but I am glad because his other two sports, rowing and fencing, never appear on screen. Do I go for a walk? It is so blooming cold I think I shall give it a miss. 12a, 15d and 16a caught my fancy but really Dada they were all good. Thanks to Senf for the hints which I needed to confirm 23a. Stay safe everyone.

  22. I found this puzzle on quite the quirky side for this Sunday. Unusually short clues for a Dada puzzIe as they were all, except three of them, seven words or less like a Ray T puzzle. ***/*** for me today.
    Favourites today are 16a, 20a, 7d & 15d with winner 15d

    Thanks to Dada and Senf

  23. I thought this was a good fair challenge, unlike England’s performance yesterday. 15d way out in front as my favourite, but 1a and 23 were excellent as well.
    Unless things pick up in the 2nd half of today’s game, I got most pleasure from watching Italy France. I like Italy’s style, especially when they beat Scotland a couple of times!!!

    1. As you admire Italy’s play so much (and so do I, living in Italy) when Italy beat England, and they will one day (just as they have beaten France and South Africa) there will be a wee smile on many Scottish faces as the smug English retire to their bath. England didn’t have a poor performance yesterday, it was forced upon them by the Scots. It is about one team playing another and on the day anyone can win despite the team’s budget and their player base.

      I think I mentioned above that I liked the crossword, but sometimes I am not amused by the comments.

  24. Just a little comment… Since the revamp of the puzzles page, the font size is so small it’s hard to read. With the waste of space at the top of the page and room left in the space to the left of the grid, maybe it could be made larger for us with older eyesight!

  25. I took a while to get going with this one and thought it was fairly difficult – can’t remember last Sunday’s so I can’t compare the two.
    I had trouble with 9d as some others seem to have had too – I think the first five letters here mean ‘great’ as in someone of great energy or skill – the rest of it is easy enough to work out.
    The 21/25a combination and 24a were all brilliant and they made me laugh. I also liked 12a.
    Thanks to Dada and to Senf.
    A really cold wind in Oxford and grey too – not nice at all.

  26. Thought this was actually a rather clever puzzle, but I wouldn’t call it benevolent by any means. Lots of scratching out today. I had 9d penned in, but then it didn’t work with my 16a. Then I realized I had the wrong first word in 16a, so 9d went back in. Oh dear. Never heard of 15d being called that, and needed Senf’s hint. LOL at 20a. But have to give COTD to 13a as it reminds me of my poor old Dad. When I was about 9 I was having some trouble with school lunches (a young lad kept trying to kiss me…), so I went home for lunch for a couple of weeks. My Dad cooked me my favourite, fried spam. Thing was, he was working nights then, so he would get up in the middle of the day, just to cook me lunch. Didn’t appreciate it then, but I do now.

  27. I thought I was getting Dada’s wavelength but today I was way off. Started off well, spotted the anagram at 1a, but rapidly lost my way. I had two left in the SE, 21a/d. Thanks to Kath, I now “get” 24a but it gets the gold for most obtuse clue I can remember.
    There was a lot to like, 20a was fave by a long shot, but 12a was giggle worthy too.
    Thanks Dada for the fun, and Senf for helping me out with so many hints.

  28. Not an easy solve, my mind kept wandering back to the non event of yesterday. Having mainly celtic ancestry I was happy for the Scots but, they’re a bit like their football team. Beating the English is the only thing that matters!
    I found 9a a stumbling block and I’m still not convinced about it. 1a went in quickly and made this less tough. 15d and 24a my cotd. I remembered my comics, Beano, Dandy etc so 24 was in early
    Thanks for the hints. Send

  29. Very mixed comments here today. I thought it was a little unusual but fine if you can think outside of the box. There were several we have seen before in similar guise. The ones I have circled are an assortment of those that came in a flash and others which took a little working out but gave satisfaction. 15d and 13a are top favourites along with 20 23 and 25a and 3 and 15d. 24a held fast for a while but I realise I had been trying to over complicate. Nothing wrong with 19d in my opinion but I needed the checkers to be sure. Thank you Dada and Senf particularly for confirming the parsing of 12a. The answer came but the parsing did not!

  30. Some great clues but mostly, I didn’t enjoy it.


    Of course, it could just be me having an off day. Work’s been busy, so I’m missing several days each week, so perhaps I’m out of practice.

    Lots of possible reasons, but just couldn’t appreciate. Again, ‘sorry’ to the setter.

  31. I nearly threw in the towel but ploughed on. It was a relief to come to the end of what was for me an irksome exercise. Too many hmms to mention. Thank you Dada and Senf.

  32. Spindrift,
    Me too! Our 4 year old granddaughter decided to give us a “roller coaster ride” from the top of the house to the bottom, three stories on FaceTime. Not very pleasant! She’s easier to control in person.
    In the plus side, here in Nottingham it’s stopped snowing and
    and I,m catching up with the cricket.

  33. Good puzzle. Last one in 24a, which took us ages to parse – then it clicked just before we read Kath!

  34. 3*/4*…. thought there were a few stretched synonyms though, as in 14D…
    liked 16A “Nitwit, a centrist struggling to impress supporter (12)”

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