Toughie 2719 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 2719

Toughie No 2719 by Hudson

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

This puzzle is great fun without being too tricky. Thanks to Hudson.

Please leave a comment telling us how you fared and what you thought of the puzzle.

Across Clues

1a Surprisingly lucid, Arteta spoke coherently (11)
ARTICULATED: an anagram (surprisingly) of LUCID ARTETA.

9a Parrots 1 10 22 (9)
LORIKEETS: homophones (indicated by 1a) of 10a and 22d.

10a Vehicle returning two birthday presents unwrapped? (5)
LORRY: strip the outer letters from two of the three birthday presents reportedly brought from the Orient more than 2,000 years ago and reverse what you have left.

11a First-born daughter detained by Spain, in order to prevent … (6)
ELDEST: the genealogical abbreviation for daughter is contained in the IVR code for Spain and a conjunction meaning ‘in order to prevent’.

12a … heartlessviolent reaction (8)
BACKLASH: the clue from the online Puzzles site is as I’ve shown it and it doesn’t make a great deal of sense. In the paper however there is a “\” between heartless and violent – so we have to remove the central letter from what that symbol is called.

13a One having fought Jerry perfectly fittingly awarded Military Cross (6)
TOMCAT: a phrase (2,1,1) meaning ‘perfectly fittingly’ contains the abbreviation for Military Cross.

15a See? Innit funny, clever clogs! (8)
EINSTEIN: an anagram (funny) of SEE INNIT.

18a Mercenary beginning to bleed fleeing Edinburgh shot (5,3)
HIRED GUN: an anagram (shot) of EDIN[b]URGH once the first letter of bleed has scarpered.

19a Flaccid alien creature with suckers (6)
LIMPET: a synonym of flaccid and the alien that’s so useful to crossword compilers.

21a An unseen hazard to 1 10, perhaps British need reserve (5,3)
BLACK ICE: string together an abbreviation for British, a verb meaning need and a synonym of reserve.

23a See 25d

26a Scent of occasionally hairy woman, undressed (5)
AROMA: regular letters from hairy and ‘woman’ without her outer letters. Perhaps the occasionally hairy woman is not totally in love with her Brazilian?

27a Medium hot sauce stewing, dressing for chops (9)
MOUSTACHE: the clothing size abbreviation for medium followed by an anagram (stewing) of HOT SAUCE.

28a Take some parmesan, chop a NZ aubergine, squire! (6,5)
SANCHO PANZA: hidden in the clue is Don Quixote’s squire.

Down Clues

1d Mantel novel about current disorder (7)
AILMENT: an anagram (novel) of MANTEL contains the symbol for electric current.

2d Exhausted Irish parliamentarian suppressing anger (5)
TIRED: the letters used to signify a member of the Dáil contain another word for anger.

3d Caught 22 working together with Dundee supporter? (4,5)
CAKE STAND: assemble the cricket abbreviation for caught, an anagram (working) of 22d and a conjunction meaning ‘together with’.

4d Shelter King, a favourite of the Welsh (4)
LEEK: a word meaning shelter and the chess abbreviation for king.

5d Punching QANTAS man, I appal an island state (8)
TASMANIA: hidden in the clue.

6d Who doesn’t like this beer when visiting Denmark? (5)
DALEK: insert a type of beer into the IVR code for Denmark.

7d King George pub yard packed (old name The Eagle & Lion) (7)
GRYPHON: the imperial abbreviation for yard is packed between the regnal cipher of King George and the abbreviation for pub. Finally append abbreviations for old and name.

8d Caretaker on vacation — relax, and laugh like a drain! (6,2)
CREASE UP: the outer letters of caretaker and a phrasal verb to relax.

14d German car firm’s timetable upset designer of navigation system (8)
MERCATOR: glue together the short name of a German car and the reversal of a company’s timetable. There’s more information on this chap here.

16d Instal app streaming surgical procedure (6,3)
SPINAL TAP: an anagram (streaming) of INSTAL APP.

17d East End wife and mother with new bloke from The Hague? (8)
DUTCHMAN: knit together an informal Cockney term for wife, the affectionate word for one’s mother and the abbreviation for new.

18d End of match with Albion, ruined part of boot (7)
HOBNAIL: the last letter of match precedes an anagram (ruined) of ALBION.

20d May possibly have taken a pew at this spot when cycling (7)
THERESA: start with a phrase meaning ‘have taken a pew at this spot’ (3,4) and cycle the last letter round to the front.

22d Regularly featured pieces from UK web artist and poet (5)
KEATS: regular letters from ‘UK web artist’.

24d US army survey estimate 1000 missing (5)
RECON: a verb to estimate without an abbreviation for 1000.

25/23a House husband that’s horrible 1 10 (4,6)
HUGH LAURIE: collate the genealogical abbreviation for husband, an exclamation of disgust and a homophone of 10a. House here is a surname.

I ticked 13a, 28a, 3d and 25/23 but my favourite clue was 10a. Which one(s) did the business for you?


23 comments on “Toughie 2719

  1. Another great crossword which shows exactly why Hudson is very high on the list of my favourite setters. Every clue was a delight although the surface reading of 26a might put you off your breakfast. I’m glad that someone has said what is missing from the online clue for 12a as I was a bit confused. Such a good crossword that I don’t mind that it was definitely not in the right place in the paper

    Thanks to Hudson for the joy and Gazza for the blog

  2. Hudson always seems able to provide some laughs along with lovely clues and this was great fun -even tho’ I couldn’t parse 10a [thanks Gazza] and some Googling was required to make sense of 25/23. Particular favourites amongst many were 10d [Dundee supporter] 14d and 20d.
    Thanks to Hudson and again to Gazza.

  3. I found 7d and 10a impossible to parse and was not very keen on the cross clueing.
    Dr House was a bit sneaky wasn’t it and 6d was a doh moment.
    COTD was 5d as a few years ago I enjoyed my trip down under.

  4. All completed at a reasonable pace although I gave up trying to parse 10a. Not usually a fan of cross references but they helped today. Thanks to Gazza and Hudson.

  5. Pretty straightforward apart from needing the hint to parse 10a and never having heard of the character played by 25d/23a or the survey in 24d but both fairly clued. All Good clean fun. Favourite was 6d. Thanks to Hudson and Gazza.

  6. With a minimum of electronic support, I finished this delightful Hudson gem and found myself chuckling throughout, especially when the homophonic cross-references began to click with me. I did need Gazza’s help parsing 10a and was mystified by the presence of Dundee in 3d and so I just bunged that one in. On the whole, though, I think that this is the puzzle of the week for me–at least in the sense of refreshing enjoyability. Nice too to see the great Romantic poet make his presence known on the first day of autumn. Thanks to Gazza as always for the assist and to Hudson for the amusement.

  7. Generally not a fan of linked clues, but this was so well constructed that it was fun to solve.
    Thanks to Hudson for an enjoyable solve, and to Gazza for clearing up some of my parsing difficulties.

  8. Echoing Colin, I’m not a fan of cross-referenced and inter-dependent cluing, but I absolutely loved this puzzle, the most fun I’ve had solving a crossword for quite some time, chuckles and laughter throughout. Having been so far off Silvanus’s wavelength yesterday that I thought the comments here referred to a different puzzle, today’s has quite restored my confidence, so thank you, Hudson!

    My first four clues solved were, in order and quite swiftly, 1a, 6d, 10a and 22d, which helped no end. Could not parse 12a (online puzzle, the lack of a / making the clue nonsensical – why can the online site not process this character? Equally, why can’t it show the required answer as having an apostrophe, should one be needed, eg 3,1’5 ?) so that was a bung in, but otherwise it was scrupulously fairly clued, witty and wonderful.

    Ticks to 26a (loud laugh!), 28a (best lurker in ages), 5d (close runner up for “best lurker in ages” award) & 6d; my COTD was 13a.

    1.5* / 5* – this puzzle deserved a (much) wider audience!

    Many thanks indeed to Hudson, and to Gazza for the review and explaining why 12a made no sense.

  9. I really enjoyed this, making steady progress until I fell approaching the finishing line by failing with 25d/23a and 24d. The former became obvious as soon as I saw the photo but I needed to “click here” for 24d.

    There are plenty of excellent clues to pick from but I think 3d & 6d are my top two.

    Many thanks to Hudson for the fun and to Gazza for the review.

  10. Lots of fun with a bit of lateral thinking required from time to time and help from our blogger to parse 10a. Failed on the 25d/23a combo as I don’t know the series but managed OK otherwise.
    Top two here were 13a & 6d.

    Thanks to Hudson and to Gazza for the review.

  11. A mix of straight forward and almost impossible clues, thanks to Gazza for the 10a parsing which eludid me.
    Last in was the 25 and 23 combo which took ages until 1 and 10 came to my rescue.
    At least a three star difficulty with a four star enjoyment, favourite was 20d.
    Thanks to Gazza for the 16a pic- the volume goes up to eleven!

  12. As I have said before, any day that I finish a Toughie unaided is a good day for me. And a Thursday to boot.

    I was missing the parsing of 12a, even though I was using the paper version. 7d had me scratching my head too, but the COTD has to be the quite exquisite 10a.

    Many thanks to Hudson and Gazza.

  13. Well that was good fun though I gave up and looked at the hint for the 25/23 combo.
    Amongst many fine clues my ticks go to 13,15&26a along with3,5&6d.
    Many thanks to Hudson and Gazza.

  14. Thanks to Gazza for explaining 10a.

    The HGV drivers are very important to our economy … I’m right behind them … normally on the M25!

    1. We’re limited to 56 mph mostly, supermarket trucks usually 52 mph. Irish can do 60! Please overtake us!

  15. I completed this fine puzzle before going to Birmingham for a concert at Symphony Hall, so late in thanking Hudson for a superb crossword with some very neat clues. Thanks , too, to Gazza.

  16. Good to have our big question mark beside 12a explained.
    A delightful chuckle-filled puzzle.
    Biggest hold-up was the 25/23 combo.
    Thanks Hudson and Gazza.

  17. Got all of this apart from 24d. Sorry to be thick but still don’t get it. What is the verb ‘ to estimate’?

  18. Very enjoyable. Perhaps too many anagrams. I couldn’t get 25 down 23 across through a lack of TV knowledge, but now I know the answer, I like the clue a lot. My first Hudson and I look forward to the next.

  19. Thanks to Hudson and to Gazza for the review and hints. What a super puzzle, not too tricky, and I loved the theme of 1&10. LOI was 20d, but my favourite was 25d&23a. Just needed the hints to parse 10a. Can’t wait for the next Hudson puzzle.

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