Toughie 2830 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 2830

Toughie No 2830 by Kcit

Hints and tips by crypticsue

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BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment ***

There were several things in this Kcit crossword that made me smile,although they didn’t do anything to disguise the fact that this crossword was more like a friendly mid-week backpager than one of “the most fiendishly difficult daily puzzles emanating from Fleet Street”

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


8a    Insist son should reside in Bury (though not very much) (3,4,4,4)
PUT ONES FOOT DOWN The abbreviation for Son should be put in (reside) an expression meaning to bury, not very much being a smile-inducing instruction to only use a single extremity rather than two

9a    Sample I put in further comments for review (3)
SIP I (from the clue) inserted into a reversal (for review) of the abbreviation used when adding further comments to a letter perhaps

10d    One used to fly about, sorting out cradle and potty (11)
PTERODACTYL An anagram (sorting out) of CRADLE and POTTY

11a    Could possibly be American native, originally (5)
MAYAN A member of an original American civilisation – a simple way of saying could possible be, the abbreviation for American and the original letter of Native

12a    One making outcry about closure of derelict part of church? (4,5)
BELL TOWER Someone making a loud outcry goes ‘about’ the closure of derelict.

15a    Name remains used in nationalist area (7)
NATASHA Some remains (of a fire) ‘used’ or inserted between an abbreviation for nationalist and the abbreviation for Area

17a    Not regular district hospital room (7)
WAYWARD A synonym for district and a hospital room

19a    Nobleman keeping up with favourite show producer (9)
PUPPETEER A nobleman ‘keeping’ UP (from the clue) and a synonym for favourite

20a    Attitude to morals and other things limiting greeting (5)
ETHIC An abbreviation for the Latin term meaning ‘and other things’ limiting an interjection of greeting

21a    Possibly sow hint of discord in various circuits? (11)
MOTHERBOARD A description of a sow as the parent of a male piglet and the first letter ‘hint’ of Discord

24a    It adds strength to ridicule (3)
RIB Something adding strength or a verb meaning to ridicule

25a    Scientist negotiated a starry moon role? (10,5)
ASTRONOMER ROYAL An anagram (negotiated) of A STARRY MOON ROLE. The wordplay reads like it might be an all-in-one clue apart from the fact that this particular role is an honour granted by the monarch rather than a negotiated position!


1d    Gradually reversing major components of animal selfies? (4,2,4)
STEP BY STEP Reversing a possible description of some selfies taking by household animals

2d    Fun run tops scrubbed, picked up without issue, not tumble-dried (6)
UNSPUN ‘Scrub’ the tops of fUN and rUN and insert (picked up) the Latin abbreviation meaning ‘without issue’. Most of the Latin I know comes from solving crosswords, and fortunately this was one abbreviation I’d seen before

3d    Gathering fool put silver in most of symbol… (10)
ASSEMBLAGE A fool and the chemical symbol for silver put in most of a symbolic device or badge

4d    …a symbol head of League displayed before ordinary game (4)
LOGO The ‘head’ of League goes before (in a Down solution) the abbreviation for Ordinary and a game of skill for two players

5d    Furtive and diffident about drink with officer (8)
STEALTHY An adjective meaning diffident goes ‘about’ a type of drink and an abbreviated officer

6d    Kind? There’s a limit to sentiment (4)
SORT If you were asked about a limit to the word SentimenT, you might reply x xx x

7d    Who’ll take a position on river? (6)
ANGLER A cryptic definition of someone perhaps taking part in a competition on a river bank or as several others have pointed out a position followed by (on) the abbreviation for River

8d    Supporter of corresponding job a lot of people cut (7)
POSTMAN A job and a truncated word meaning a lot of people

13d    Bishop, in effect, is in possession of genuine, upstanding crook? (10)
LAWBREAKER Insert the chess abbreviation for Bishop into a verb meaning to effect (damage or harm), then insert the result into a reversal (upstanding) synonym for genuine

14d    We certainly will keep that place in a state of watchfulness (7,3)
WEATHER EYE WE (from the clue) and a word of affirmation (certainly) will ‘keep’ a noun meaning ‘that place’

16d    Left inside shooting Oscar winners essentially with few crew members (8)
SKELETON The abbreviation for L goes inside a form of clay-pigeon shooting, followed by the NATO Phonetic Alphabet letter represented by Oscar and the ‘essential’ letter of winNers

18d    Measure of volume in alarm curtailed after start of month? (7)
DECIBEL A curtailed alarm goes after an abbreviated way of referring to the start of the last month of the year

19d    Pressure on current measures to secure a region of South America (6)
PAMPAS The abbreviation for Pressure goes on some measures of current, into which is inserted (to secure) A (from the clue)

20d    Last target certain to be topped (6)
ENDURE A target and a synonym for certain without (to be topped) its first letter

22d    Carry on with the evidence initially after start of trial (4)
TOTE A shortened form of one and the initial letters of The and Evidence go after the ‘start’ of Trial

23d    John pens line in observations shared widely (4)
BLOG A slang term for a lavatory (john) ‘pens’ the abbreviation for Line

Lots of insertions and several ‘chop a letter off’ clues, but the chance to use a photo of my favourite 12a, home of six of the best-sounding bells in the country (and that’s not just my opinion!)


22 comments on “Toughie 2830

  1. I found kciT’s clues in this one somewhat more entertaining than usual, especially 8a and 1d. I don’t know how much laundry he does but he needs to learn the difference between a tumble dryer and the other sort [2d].
    Thanks to kciT and to CS for the blog.

  2. This was a slow start but then the pace picked up although a bit of head scratching along the way. Enjoyable throughout once I got going. Thanks to Kcit and CS.

  3. I thought this was great fun and not overly difficult though the parsing of 1a took a while to see and elicited a big smile when the penny dropped.
    I liked several but I’ll mention 1&19a, the clever 7d along with 16d and of course 23d.
    Many thanks to Kcit and Cryptic Sue for a top puzzle and review.

  4. May I join the club of those who enjoyed 1a. Almost my first one in, and it set a very fun tone. Definitely only one star for difficulty, but then yesterday’s was no floughie, so I’m not complaining.

  5. I’ll follow the trend and pick 8a as my favourite.
    Thanks to Kcit and CS for the review.
    I presume that ‘major components’ in 1d is telling us to reverse only the two longer words in the animal selfies.

  6. Mercifully easier than yesterday & good fun. Agree that it was on the gentle side but reckon parsing one or two of the answers merited an additional * on the difficulty rating. Latin is all Greek to me so hadn’t a clue at 2d that the SP abbreviation related to without issue (starting price all I knew). I bunged in 16d also & forgot to go back & parse & if I’d remembered to I would have had to look up skeet. Top 2 for me the witty 1d & 8a.
    Thanks to Kcit & to CS.
    Now for those 4 stubborn blighters holding out from yesterday.

  7. I couldn’t separate 8a and 1d so they became my co-favourites from this fairly tricky (I thought) Toughie. It took me a while to get going, but once underway I went through it in good time. Top entertainment, so thanks very much to Kcit and CS.

  8. Google informs me that SP is British English for ‘without issue’ (for ‘sine prole’), but even after all the Latin I’ve had and all the Latin abbreviations I’ve learned and used, that’s a first for me. 2d therefore was my only problem with this otherwise very enjoyable toughie. But even had I twigged all of the parts of that clue, I still would not know a thing about the definition since I have not the faintest idea what ‘not tumble-dried’ means. Do I need to know about British washing machines or launderettes? My goodness gracious. Thanks to CS and Kcit.

    1. Finally gave up & admitted defeat 1 letter shy of a finish in yesterday’s Serpent & sought Stephen’s learned guidance. Immediately thought of Terence & his frequent remarks on obscurities – that supernatural creature in early pre-Islamic religious systems was the tumble drier wot dun me in…..
      Nice Picaroon puzzle in the Graun. Looking forward to the Masters – reckon you’d have had your sanity questioned if you’d predicted Tiger playing & Phil not (aka banned) a few months ago.

      1. Tomorrow 1) I see the professionals who ‘do’ my income taxes; 2) Major League Baseball finally begins its long season (Opening Day!); 3) The Masters begins, with–as you so rightly put it–Phil persona non grata & Tiger the Second (or 3rd) Coming. The azaleas are apparently in high bloom (mine already have mostly come and gone) and the forecast is for clear, sunny days.

        Funny, isn’t it, when little things like that pre-Islamic creature suddenly swims into one’s orbit out of nowhere (as it did so surprisingly into mine). I just happened to remember it. Stephen is doing a bang-up job as Toughie blogger, isn’t he? And Sloop John Bee too. Such prodigies!

    2. Completely agree Robert. I managed to finish which is very unusual for me, but although I came up with the answer I had no idea at all about ‘without issue’. Thanks as always to CS and friends for the very helpful explanations.

  9. The Latin abbreviation in 2d was new to us but we had guessed correctly.
    Pleasant solve.
    Thanks Kcit and CS.

  10. I got there but as is fair it was a bit harder than yesterday. 23a made me think about female wild boar? and I wonder why men for a lot of people is not the right answer for 8d. I thought that the church must be one of CS’s favourites and google lens identifies it as St Mary the Virgin in Chislet Kent. A very unusual 12a for sure.
    Thanks to Kcit and CS.

  11. 12a was my favourite clue among so many. I arrived at the sp in 2d via a different route, but for the life of me cannot remember what it was now! Thankyous to Kcit and CS, especially for the excellent picture at 1d.

  12. I thought 7d was more subtle than just a cryptic definition. Another word for position could give the first 5 letters followed by the normal abbreviation for river. Don’t often do the Toughie but enjoyed this and agree * rating for difficulty. Thanks to Kcit and CS.

  13. Enjoyable with some amusing clues. Definitely a mild Toughie if I can finish it unaided! 1d and 14d were my picks..

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