Toughie 2772 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 2772

Toughie No 2772 by Artix

Hints and tips by Dutch

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

Some lovely clues. Took a while to get started though reasonably smooth afterwards. It took me a long time to parse 17d because I couldn’t think of a musical, hope it’s right, thoughts welcome.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought. And have a wonderful Xmas


1a    Crisp note (6)
QUAVER: Two meanings, a brand of crisp and a musical note

5a    Where to dispose of two lots of smelly stuff? (6)
LAVABO: Volcanic emission and the smell of an unwashed person

10a    Stick prize-winning pig back on trailer of truck (5)
KEBAB: A prize-winning pig in a movie is reversed (back) after the last letter (trailer) of truck

11a    Seduce maiden holding flower, sucking neck voraciously (9)
VAMPIRISM: A verb meaning to seduce (I’m more familiar with the noun describing a seductive woman) and the abbreviation for maiden contain (holding) a 4-letter flower

12a    Boss of Zara Home, perhaps, can initially deal with everything (7)
TINDALL: Nothing to do with the company. Another word for can, the first letter (initially) of deal, and another word for everything.

13a    Instrument commonly injecting energy into even pieces of funk, cello & blues (7)
UKELELE: Insert the abbreviation for energy into the even letters of ‘funk cello blues’. The answer is a commonly seen spelling.

14a    Idiot mastering how to watch TV online (9)
STREAMING: An anagram (idiot) of MASTERING

17a    Scan water beginning to jet inside car (5)
FJORD: Scan as an abbreviation for Scandinavian. The first letter (beginning) of jet goes inside a make of car

18a    One capable of beating all others at table? (5)
TRUMP: Cryptic definition – think cards

19a    Opening bit of Comaneci trickery with tilt to one side? (9)
CARTWHEEL: An all-in-one, Comaneci is a gymnast. The first letter (opening bit) of Comanceci, a 3-letter word for trickery, the abbreviation for with and a word meaning ’tilt to one side’

21a    German crew loaded gun: look out! (7)
ACHTUNG: A rowing crew number in German plus an anagram (loaded) of GUN

23a    Animation of Lion King omits one hairy humanoid (7)
KLINGON: An anagram (animation of …) LION K(i)NG omitting the letter that looks like one

25a    Gallant Turkish governor overwhelmed by welcome (9)
CHEVALIER: A Turkish governor (of a vilayet) is contained in (overwhelmed by) a 5-letter shout of approval or welcome

26a    Sentimentality to satisfy beaut (4-1)
GOOD-O: A 3-letter word for sentimentality and a 2-letter word that could mean to satisfy

27a    With elbow sticking out, cutting offbreak, I’m bowled (6)
AKIMBO: Hidden (cutting …)

28a    Toy with graduate musician (2-2,2)
YO-YO MA: A (2-2) toy and a graduate


2d    Like D_____? (5)
URBAN: The whole clue is the definition. If you put the answer on the underline, you’ll reveal a city

3d    See the setter support pointless sharp instrument (9)
VIBRAHARP: The Latin abbreviation for vide (see), a 1-letter personal pronoun that the setter would use to describe himself, a support garment, and (s)HARP from the clue without the first letter (pointless)

4d    Snarl from Frenchman who scored (5)
RAVEL: Two meanings, to snarl or tangle and a French composer

5d    It’s an army thing: egg on top of Roquefort cheese (9)
LIMBURGER: A 4-letter word for an ‘army’ or ‘leggy’ thing, a verb meaning ‘egg on’, and the first letter (top) of Roquefort

6d    Say sloth, say, eats pea, say (5)
VOICE: A weakness of which sloth could be an example, contains a letter describing a small round object, of which pea can be an example

7d    Dote appallingly, offer gifts, put on ring? She’s said yes! (5-2-2)
BRIDE-TO-BE: An anagram (appallingly) is covered by (put on) a word meaning to offer gifts for favours. I wondered if ‘put on ring’ might be the containment indicator but it didn’t feel right to me

8d    Curry successfully used these fish (6)
SKATES: Two meanings, the first referring to John Curry

9d    Hosted broadcast in December (but not 6th nor 8th) (6)
EMCEED: An anagram (broadcast) of DECEM(b)E(r) without the 6th and 8th letters

15d    Work well in the main? Yahoo! (9)
ROUGHNECK: Two meanings, to work on an oil rig and a hooligan

16d    Noticing undone zip, unbeknownst to others (9)
INCOGNITO: An anagram (undone) of NOTICING plus zero or zip

17d    Cringingly off colour in musical in auditorium (9)
FAWNINGLY: I think this is a colour (of deer, for example), IN from the clue, and a homophone of a 4-letter American musical series

18d    Top-level cover-up from PM Queen ignored (6)
THATCH: A milk-snatching PM without the abbreviation for the Queen

20d    Pound on title for Guardiola’s City (6)
LONDON: The symbol for pound, ON from the clue, and a Spanish (for Guardiola) title

22d    Remove Dag, perhaps, from either his Geneva or New York office? (5)
UNARM: Dag here is a pistol. Split (2,3) where the 2-letters are an abbreviation, the answer could indicate a main office of a large international organisation

23d    Wander within outskirts of Killarney here (5)
KERRY: To wander or deviate goes inside the outer letters (within the outskirts) of Killarney

24d    Maintain he’s met his match (5)
GROOM: Two meanings, to look after and the partner of 7d

I liked the 7d/24d combination. I also liked the Guardiola’s city mislead. My favourite was the army meal of egg on Roquefort cheese. Which clues did you like?

22 comments on “Toughie 2772

  1. An enjoyable Friday Toughie. I know the Queen is supposed to do the DT Cryptic but I bet, if she did today’s Toughie, she’d have laughed out loud at the thought of anyone being the Boss of Zara!

    10a, 12a, and 5d all featured on my favourites list. I always forget about ‘army’ things.

    Thanks and Happy Christmas to Artix and Dutch

      1. Coming in late. Thank you so much. I’m glad you introduced me to this art. A very happy Christmas and a much better New Year!

  2. Some brilliantly inventive, but totally fair clues. Just right for a festive Friday. I marked rather a lot for particular praise but my top few are: 21a [German crew] 5d [egg on] 7d [the clever definition] 29d [2 meanings of Dag].
    Many thanks to Artix and Dutch.
    Merry Christmas everyone.

  3. An excellent Toughie to finish the week and kick start the festivities. 5d was my best of the best, of which there were several in an inspired grid.

    Many thanks to Artix for the challenge and to Dutch. Seasons Greetings to all on this superb site.

  4. A very enjoyable crossword – thanks to Artix and Dutch.
    6d was my last answer to parse as I was convinced initially that the central I was a sound-alike of ai (sloth) – d’oh!
    I can’t see that ‘put on’ works as a containment indicator (especially in a down clue) in 7d. I took the containment indicator to be ‘put on ring’ where ring is the periphery.
    My ticks went to 19a, 21a and 5d.

        1. I shall: for what it’s worth, I intended “put on ring” to be the containment indicator – and the whole process to be that which might lead to the answer … (dote, gift, ring)
          Thanks for all the positive feedback – truly appreciated – and festivest bestest to one and all.

          1. Thanks for the clarification, Artix, and thanks for the enjoyable puzzle.
            Happy Christmas to you.

  5. Good puzzle to end the week which involved some head scratching and the odd look up to get the parsing sorted. I liked 19a, 21a and 8d.

    Thanks to Artix and Dutch.

  6. I loved this. Testing without being impossible at my level (Elgar). Many smiles. Nobody seems to have answered Dutch’s query about a musical in 17d. How about Glee? Thanks to Artix for a very enjoyable puzzle and Dutch for his parsing of a couple of my bung in’s.

  7. Some great misdirections made this puzzle a bit tricky for me but eventually got there.
    Thanks to the setter and to Dutch for the review.

  8. I thought this was delightful. An unusual amount of general knowledge, perhaps, but I was lucky enough to have it all – I am just old enough to remember 8d, which was one of my favourites – though there are too many to mention, really.

    Is the volcanic molten rock smelly? I’ve never been close enough to find out. I was interested to discover from Wikipedia what 15d’s do (another very clever clue). Never seen the letter ‘o’ clued as in 6d before, as far as I remember, but I suppose it’s fair. And I think Dutch must be right about the musical in 17d; most of us would not pronounce the ‘g’ hard in the answer, though I have one brother who does.

    Anyway, a lovely Christmas present from Artix, to whom along with Dutch very many thanks and best wishes for the coming festivities. May merriness abound to all.

  9. Splendid puzzle. Almost finished it but the NW is ‘wot done me in’ because I’d forgot the skater and could not remember the instrument, though I had the last 5 letters right (forgot all about ‘vide’!). Nor could I think of any city except Dallas with a D! So much to like, especially 4d, 24d, 7d, & 21a. Bunged-in the Zara boss without a clue who he was because the clue itself was so clever. Great fun throughout. Thanks and a very Happy Christmas to Dutch and Artiz.

  10. Some of the GK like the crisps and the skater were a bit of a challenge but Google helped with those. Eventually all completed with plenty of smiles and chuckles along the way.
    Thanks Artix and Dutch.

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