ST 3110 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 3110 (Hints)

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 3110 (Hints)

Hints and tips by Senf

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

A very good Sunday morning from a windy Winnipeg. 

Keep staying safe everyone.

For me, compared to the last couple of weeks, Dada is somewhat benevolent today.  I counted six anagrams (three partials), two lurkers (both reversed), and two homophones (one partial) – all in a symmetric 28 clues, with 14 hints ‘sprinkled’ throughout the grid you should be able to get the checkers to enable the solving of the unhinted clues.  Be careful, the instant ‘write in’ answer for 14a may be one letter short and therefore incorrect

Candidates for favourite – you know what, no standouts for favourite this week.

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:


7a Musician obtains novel about origin of jazz (8)
An anagram (novel) of OBTAINS containing (about) the first letter (origin) of Jazz.

11a Set in stone, evil I suspect (10)
An anagram (suspect) of STONE, EVIL I.

12a Well, one takes a risk (6)
A double definition – the first could relate to being well medically after, say, surgery.

17a Rejected figure in group, bigot (6)
A three letter figure, numeral that is, reversed (rejected) and inserted into (in) a three letter type of group.

20a As fish may be served, celebrate catching one (8)
A synonym of celebrate containing (catching) ONE from the clue.

24a Top dog on the phone? (4)
The first homophone (on the phone) of the abbreviated form of a breed of dog.

26a Row of houses? (8)
A term frequently used by police for a row (pronounced appropriately) that occurs in homes (houses).


1d Chief in one way demonstrating Churchill’s reserve? (3,5)
A four letter synonym of chief contained by (in) one way (as in direction), –  and don’t ignore the ‘?’ at the end of the clue.

4d During escape, rescuer ascending fissure in glacier (8)
The reversal (ascending) of all of a five letter synonym of rescuer contained by (during) an abbreviated form of escape (especially on computer keyboards).

8d Spanish city coming up in postcode lottery (6)
One of the reversed lurkers (coming up in) found in two words in the clue – the other reversed lurker not hinted by me is 25a.

16d Catch some cricket in this location, reportedly? (8)
The ‘some cricket’ completed in turn by each bowler and the second homophone (reportedly) of a single word for in this location.

18d Simple shot catching stray reptile (8)
From cricket, we change to golf – a term for a simple shot (for the completion of a hole) containing (catching) a three letter synonym of stray.

21d Old fool grabbing tail of Siamese cat (6)
The single letter for old and a four letter type of fool containing (grabbing) the last letter (tail) of SiamesE.

24d I don’t know academic success (4)
A double definition, that must have achieved oldie but goodie status, to finish – I don’t think I need to say more than that.

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This is the Barcarolle – Belle nuit, ô nuit d’amour from Jacques Offenbach’s opera The Tales of Hoffman. It is being played and sung by what I consider is a very talented Polish school orchestra, full details in the before and after credits. One memory I have of hearing this live was during a tour of Las Cuevas de Drach on the Island of Majorca – played while being ‘boated’ across a large lake, apparently Europe’s largest underground lake, inside the caves, as far as memory serves there were only four or five musicians on that occasion.

But, because of a restriction placed by the video owner, you will have to select the Watch on YouTube button in the bottom left corner and not the Play button in the centre of the screen:

68 comments on “ST 3110 (Hints)

  1. Weather miserable down here in Puglia, so plenty of opportunity to get on with Dada. I found this reasonably straightforward with a few of Dada’s trademark clues: 26ac, 1dn and 5dn. 25ac held me up for a long time … just couldn’t see it (not helping that I had a reversal of some European mountains in my mind). A good challenge.

    Thanks Dada and Senf

    Now back to finish off Paul’s fruity prize puzzle from yesterday’s Grauniad.

  2. 2.5*/4*. An enjoyable and nicely challenging puzzle which brightened up a dull Sunday morning here in London.

    5d was my favourite.

    Many thanks to Dada and to Senf.

  3. I was up very early for a supermarket delivery and after all the disinfecting and putting away, this crossword proved to be enormous fun over the toast and orange juice with no bits in it.

    Still a little bit dazed after my Chelsea won the Champions League last night. It set me thinking of when my father carried me through the gates at Stamford Bridge when I was a baby, and thus a lifetime of devotion was born. Through thick and thin – mostly thin before Mr Abramovich arrived with his bags of loot. Ever since I cried and cried when Spurs beat us in the FA Cup Final of 1967, I have trained myself to expect the worst and hope for the best and try not to get too emotionally wrought by events, but last night was one of those rare moments of pure sporting joy. I shall cling to that feeling as long as I can, at least for today.

    Today’s crossword soundtrack: Harry J. All Stars – Liquidator.

    Thanks to Dada and Senf.

    1. All true fans know the feeling that success brings Terence. Never thought they would beat City but that’s why we follow our teams.
      I thought of you when I saw the result. Must be one of the rew occasions when a change of manager produced such reward. Feel for Frank Lamport who, I think is just as much a Chelsea man as yourself.

        1. Frank lamppost is what my predictive text made of Frank Lampard. As good a name as any

    2. Isn’t it interesting how this blog has created such a sense of closeness and amity among many of us here? I found myself cheering for Chelsea on behalf of Terence, even though I really don’t have a favourite football team over there. The only professional match I ever saw was Nottingham Forest vs a team a can’t remember in 1972 at Nottingham Stadium. And so last night, when I heard Chelsea had won, I was happy for Terence.

      1. Yes, Chelsea is prominent in the memory of Stoke fans of a certain vintage.

    3. Thank you LROK and Robert (and even Miff with your Frank Lamppost), for having me in your thoughts.

  4. Even with the splendid hints this I’m afraid is a puzzle too far for me in terms of difficulty. The clues are very obscure in the main and way too clever for me.
    Thx for the hints

  5. A puzzle of two halves, top completed and bottom only one solved. A re-visit and things slowly but surely fell into place. Needed e help for the carbs as it was too far in the back of my mind.
    Ashamed the the golfing reference took longest to emerge & 18d my LOI. Also my COTD.
    Thanks to Dada for brightening up a morning where the haar is successfully fighting off the sun’s attempts,. Thank you Senf for the hints.

  6. Plenty of fun in this once I’d accepted that there is a musician who fits the bill and also that I wasn’t looking for a strange disease in 23a. First thought for 5d was ‘lap dancing’ which fits quite well using a different definition of ‘china’ but would doubtless have been given the thumbs down as an indirect anagram! When the correct penny dropped, that became my favourite.

    Thanks to Dada for the Sunday enjoyment and to Senf for the succinct hints and the demonstration of the talent of those Polish youngsters.

    1. My face is so much worse today I rang 111 and got a really helpful man. He got me to go and see the Pharmacist at Boots in Sheringham who had never seen a reaction like it (glad I’m individual!) and has given me some tablets. My eyes are like pinpricks but the itching is dreadful. If it doesn’t improve I was told to see a doctor on Tuesday – fat chance of that!

      1. Oh dear, Manders, I do hope the tablets help. It’s good to be ‘individual’ but preferably only in a beneficial way!

      2. Oh you poor thing – and just when the weather turns decent you cannot enjoy it. Do hope it eases soon.

  7. It took me a while to get into the mind set of this one. ***/*** 25a was my last one in and I still don’t understand it. 20a was a head scratcher but it’s a great clue. Favourite 5d. Thanks to all.

  8. Enjoyed this a lot but have a question mark over13d – have an answer but can’t see why. I also was looking for a disease in 23a. Annoyed that didn’t spot 25a as I too was looking at mountains reversed. Anyway, thanks to all on this glorious summer day.

    1. Unfortunately I’m not allowed to discuss anagram indicators so cannot help. This is why I rarely post on a weekend. Like school detentions I’m not going to the naughty step

          1. With my swollen face I misread the clue I was worried about, it was 19d not 13d hence MP’s clue made no sense to me! I really do look hideous.

  9. I did manage to finish this uninspiring Dada last night, but it all seemed a bit workaday and rather 22, and I was a bit surprised to see 23a as one word. I did like 5d, 4d & 20a, however. Thanks to Senf and Dada. 2.5* / 3*

  10. I needed help with a couple so not an unaided solve today. After the first pass when I solved precisely one clue I thought this was going to be impenetrable but it is Dada so I persevered. Sure enough, answers began to reveal themselves and I got within three of an unaided finish. Like others, I was looking for an obscure disease for 23a and mountains in 25a. I liked 4d but my COTD is 5d.

    Grateful thanks to Dada and Senf.

  11. Dada did for me today so for once I agree with Brian. Managed the North but as I have chores to attend to sought help with a few in the South. 9a was my Fav for its surface. Thank you Dada and Senf.

  12. Difficult but doable with some clues requiring a deal of thinking about. So all in all about right for a prize crossword. Favourite was 18d. Thanks to Dada and Senf.

  13. The North went in very easily as did 23 across but nothing below 17 across except for 23 and even with the hints have still four left with no clue as to what they could be.

    Definitely a comedown from yesterday’s high but with birthday barbecue to come in a couple of hours with the three daughters and partners and the grandchildren need to till the legume patch and get ready.

    Thanks to Senf and Dada.

    1. Presuming it’s your celebration C. Happy birthday, enjoy a semblence of normality again.

      1. Thank you LROK and Steve. It was a very good semblance of normality with daughters, partners, and grandchildren all here on a lovely day in every respect. And it was my 74th.

  14. Unlike Senf for me the south of this sod bore about as much resemblance to benevolence as Pol Pot to democracy. I was so far off the pace that I considered pulling up 6 fences from home but my knackered steed did eventually stagger across the finishing line albeit with some assistance. I couldn’t for the life of me see either 13d or 25a so revealed the checker & it still took a while to circumnavigate the globe umpteen times to find the right place (almighty groan when realising why) which left 13d, twigged only when reading MP’s reply to Manders. Bit surprised some found it lacklustre as despite my struggles I thought it good ‘un – 4&18d would be my picks for their clever wordplay & 16d was excellent too.
    Thanks to Dada & to Senf

    1. Well, my comment on benevolence was comparative and some might say that Pol Pot was more democratic than, say, Genghis Khan.

  15. The DT puzzles clock informed me that I solved today’s Dada in my average time for a mid-week Toughie.

    My only problem is parsing 19d. There is no hint and none of the Commentariat have mentioned it, so far. Must be just me?

    18d I went for football, not golf. A “simple shot” that even Timo Werner couldn’t possibly miss … or could he?

    Thanks, all.

    1. I have no idea if my 19d is correct or even how I arrived at it, the letters just fit and I’ve got fingers crossed.

  16. After a cold breakfast again, this was a bridge too far. My aide is as much use as tits on a nun.
    North was doable and I was encouraged, but south was beyond my ken. I went for a hint to get going again and managed to finish with e-help, heaven knows if the answers are correct.
    Thanks to Dada, and plaudits and love to Senf for his help completing this.

    1. Heaven knows if the answers are correct.

      The “Submit puzzle” button helps … but I’m a cheat.

  17. A slow steady solve with some hold-ups. 26a took me along time since it was some obscure colloquialism of a particular profession — and that always makes me feel a bit cheated. But the answer had to be what it was and confirmed by BRB. 25a is ingenious and like so many I spent too long trying to fit in ‘alps’ backwards. I biffed 19d and can kind of see how it might be parsed, as GB (but not NI) is an example of this. Like many, I had most fun with 5d. ***/***

    1. 26a is a clever clue if you get what sort of row this is and Senf gives a hint about the pronunciation. I don’t know what you mean about an obscure colloquialism of a profession as this answer is not a profession. Well the answer could be a profession but not in this instance. Assuming you are in the UK it is a very common expression used for a particular type of row.

    1. Welcome to the blog, unless you are the same Katy who commented on ST3110 with a different e-mail address. If you are not that Katy and you intend to comment regularly you will need to change or ‘add something’ to your alias to avoid confusion.

      Now to your comment, which reads more like a request for a hint. It is a Sunday Prize Puzzle so hints are ‘rationed.’ But if you have solved the applicable across clues and so have obtained the checkers then you are well on tthe way. What you are looking for to fit the word play is two words (6,4) which are then split (3,7) to fit the definition.

    2. I couldn’t at first pass, but after staring at it for a while, the light bulb moment arrived. You’ll kick yourself when you get it.

  18. Found this offering from Dada to be a little quirky in spots and caused me more issues than is normal for me with his puzzles. ***/**** for today. Needed some of the hints today from Senf to keep me going and on track. No real favourites today but liked 11a, 14a, 3d & 5d.

    Thanks to Dada and Senf

  19. I found this very enjoyable, clearly helped by the fact that I finished it unlike yesterday. Just needed Senf’s hints to confirm I had 24a right, as I wasn’t sure you could abbreviate the dog like that.
    Favourites were 1, 5 & 18 down.
    Thanks to Dada and Senf

  20. That was tough today – needed Senf’s hints to complete the southern portions!
    Not sure I deserve the pen today as not an unaided completion 😔
    Thanks to Dada for the head-scratching and to Senf for the needed assistance.

  21. Well, we have had some wonderful similes that’s for sure! And smiles too, possibly. This was a beast, not helped by the fact that I did put in the wrong answer for 14a thinking I could disregard the ‘h’. Then I put the wrong version in 24a so I was in a mess. But is is too hot to get in a tizzy – surprised to hear that London does not appear to have this hot weather? 11a was a very clever disguise I thought and I liked 26a as well. Many thanks to the setter and to Senf. Cannot believe it is June next week, where has the time gone?

    1. Too hot? It seems like yesterday that everyone was complaining about arctic weather in May!!

      1. For my part it’s wonderful to have some warmth at last so am enjoying a glass of vino en plein air.

      2. No pleasing some M.
        There is still snow on the hills north of Inverness.
        16C & sunny here at LrOK Estate this morning but was 8C 4 miles away on Dornoch beach with a classic coastal haar.
        May has been pretty abysmal. Our solar panels have generated only 75% what they did last May.

        1. Not complaining about the heat LrOK just saying I’m happy to pass on the crossword and enjoy lounging in the garden! With a little alcoholic assistance of course.

  22. Late in the day but never too late to thank Dada for a fine puzzle and Senf for his hints. 25a took me almost as long to get as the rest of the grid. Loving the sunshine.

  23. Practice makes perfect I think.
    Never miss a crossword from Dada or Paul as he is known in the Guardian and agree with Senf that he was quite benevolent today.
    Didn’t know which sport the simple shot was referring to in 18d but the answer was obvious.
    20a is a sign of the times. Our customers wouldn’t have it any other way, which, I think, is a shame.
    Thanks to Dada and to Senf for the hints.

  24. I fall into the benevolent Dada camp. **/****, favourite 18d once I saw the sporting reference. Thanks everyone. Stay safe in the sunshine (if you’re n the UK).

  25. Dada is always a work out for me, but he is fair and doesn’t usually need a deep dive into obscure GK. Needed two sittings to finish and not quite sure why some of the answers didn’t jump out at me at first, e.g. 5d and 20a. An enjoyable challenge today, with 13d being last in. Thanks to Dada and Senf.

    1. That must have Jacques Offenbach spinning in his grave!

      I actually thought someone would come up with the British Airways commercial that used the music (at the correct speed).

  26. I plan to do some serious weeding in the garden tomorrow. The weeds have gone berserk! Anyone got any useful tips on how to get rid of goose grass or, as some call it, sticky willow? You know, the sticky plant that grows in a rampant fashion over ever bed and through all shrubs?

    First priority, of course, is the crossword.

    Night all.

  27. Finished a long time ago but got distracted. Managed without the hints but looked up a couple of synonyms. My hold ups we’re in the SW. did not spot one of the lurkers for a long time so wondered why my answer did not have French mountains backwards. Also was looking for a medical condition. I then thought of a medical concern with an extra letter but which led me to the answer. Biggest problem for me was misspelling the food at 13d which doesn’t seem to have troubled anyone else. Only then could I abandon all the cooking or non cooking methods for 20a. Favourites 26a and 5 16 and 21d. Thanks Dada and Senf.

  28. Just finishing off from yesterday. My only problem is 19d. There is only one sensible answer but I can’t parse it.
    A Bank Holiday so am staying in to avoid the caravans which I hear are out in force. It’ll be lovely in the garden later where I’ll join DG in spirit, if not in body, with a welcome G&T!

  29. Day late getting round to this. First asparagus outside the house this season – delicious. Thought this would make it easy. Took ages to get started and then got slower and slower, and then, lo and behold everything fell into place. So we couldn’t understand why we had been so slow. Not enough liquid inspiration obviously.

    Interested to hear Manders is from Sheringham. We have a house there but have been unable to visit the in-laws for nearly 18 months now. Wish him well by the way.

  30. Day late getting round to this. First asparagus outside the house this season – delicious. Thought this would make it easy. Took ages to get started and then got slower and slower, and then, lo and behold everything fell into place. So we couldn’t understand why we had been so slow. Not enough liquid inspiration obviously.

    Interested to hear Manders is from Sheringham. We have a house there but have been unable to visit the in-laws for nearly 18 months now. Wish him well by the way.

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