ST 3160 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 3160 (Hints)

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 3160 (Hints)

Hints and tips by Senf

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

A very good Sunday morning from Winnipeg – where we have had more of what we don’t need right now!

For me, one word – quirky.  I counted four anagrams (with two partials), no lurkers, and one homophone – 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.

Candidates for favourite – 22a, 8d, 13d, 18d, and 22d.

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 Member of religious body gentleman put down (8)
A synonym of gentleman and a single word synonym of put down.

9a Wicked not having cavities, did you say? (6)
The homophone, but not a very good one (did you say) of a single word for not having cavities – I suppose the quality of the homophone might depend on regional variations in pronunciation.

11a Take cut: receipt doctored, paper printed out (6,4)
An anagram (doctored) of TAKe with the last letter removed (cut) and RECEIPT.

12a Couple of beers for French trip (6)
A term for a beer, or what beer can be contained in, repeated (couple of) – we had this ‘variation’ of trip a few weeks ago.

20a Support mates after revolution, encouraging strike (8)
A synonym of support followed by a synonym of mates reversed (after revolution).

24a Children’s author had tea with Orwell, finally (4)
The last letters (finally) of four words in the clue.

26a Dull, remaining actors (8)
A synonym of remaining and the collective noun for (a group of) actors.


1d Injury caused by birch tree catching lumberjack’s head (8)
A synonym of birch, as a verb (some research might be required), and a three letter tree containing (catching) the first letter (head) of Lumberjack.

4d Unmixed, last of ginger beer stirred into dessert (4-4)
Start with the abbreviated form of a synonym of dessert and insert an anagram (stirred into) of the last letter of gingeR and BEER.

8d Dry rolls glazed with egg, superlatively enjoyable (6)
The synonym for dry (when discussing, for example, vino) reversed (rolls) contained by (glazed with) the type of egg that the school nurse used to, maybe still does, look for.

13d One’s lifted when facing two animals (7,3)
Two animals – one is an insect the other is a flying mammal.

18d Trains on time, household items transported in one? (3,5)
A synonym of trains (in non-athletic or non-travelling ways) followed by (on) the single letter for Time.

22d Top lower (6)
A double definition – an item of clothing and a farm animal.

24d Rollers died on the rocks (4)
The single letter for died and the type of rocks that are frozen.

Quick Crossword Pun:


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English actor and singer Dennis Waterman passed away, aged 74, last Sunday. Probably best known for his leading roles in The Sweeney, Minder, and New Tricks, he also sang the theme songs for the last two; here is the one for Minder:

53 comments on “ST 3160 (Hints)

  1. For me the best Dada puzzle for quite a while. I could have highlighted virtually all the down clues but will go with 1,4,5,13,18&21. Great stuff.
    Many thanks to setter and blogger.

    1. SL: Did you and MP meet up yesterday (in Totnes, was it?), and if so, did you both behave yourselves?

      1. Hi Robert, yes we did meet and I certainly behaved myself, I can’t vouch for MP😉
        We had a fun time, it was nice to see Mark again and meet “Saint” Sharon for the first time too.

      2. I’ve met MP lots of times – he’s lovely and good fun – forget the behaving himself . . .

  2. 2.5*/4*. This was great fun with 13a my favourite.

    Many thanks to Dada and to Senf.

    1. With reference to your comment on Canuckle yesterday, a pastime, including all the ‘look alikes,’ that I have not yet succumbed to and which I am not planning to succumb to, I have just e-searched for the answer, which of course is available, and I recognised it instantly. Very topical, as this year’s awards ceremony is this evening.

  3. You describe it as Quirky, personally I can think of several other terms none of which are very complimentary.
    Dada at his very worst as far as I am concerned, very very difficult.
    Def not my favourite Dada.
    Thx for the hints

    1. OK teach me to comment in haste! When I stopped being annoyed by it and gave it some constructive thought I realised that this was in the main very clever. Still cannot see where the TEA fits in18d, the French Trip is weird and the 13d is just plain awful, there are many other ways to describe how to use this equipment but this was one of the most odd.
      Still not my favourite puzzle😡

      1. Brian – try instead with 18d to split it (7-1), finishing with the usual crossword abbreviation for time (hopefully that won’t get me into trouble and on to the Naughty Step!).

        1. You will escape the naughty step as that is more or less what I said in my hint. But, perhaps, Brian is actually referring to TEA in 24a in which case he just needs to read that hint.

  4. Jean Arp described the aim of the Dada Movement as “to destroy the hoaxes of reason and to discover an unreasoned order.” The world we live in is enough of an unreasoned order without crosswords becoming so.

    ************ / ?

    Thanks for the hints for confirmation.

  5. Always with Dada, at first glance looked impenetrable.
    But steadily worked through with just 4d and 17a left.
    Took too long, put me into 3*** time.
    Amongst the many gems, 18d comes top.
    Many thanks, and also to Senf.

  6. This was an absorbing puzzle, full of unexpected twists and turns. I must admit, at first I did not know where to start but, after a few clues fell into place, I soon got into the swing of it. It was a shallenge but an enjoyable one that was very satisfying, once I had finished. I thought 11a, 1d and5d were very good, although there were so many great clues that it was hard to pick just a few. There were a few I couldn’t parse so thanks to Senf for the hints. Thanks to Dada for another fine puzzle.

  7. Great fun earlier this morning as the sun rose and the brain got moving: a swift and not overly demanding solve, all very fair and Dada in a gentle mood, I thought. On a coupe of clues the important thing was not to put in my first thought, and it fell into place swiftly with most generating a happy sufficiency of satisfied smiles. HMs to 8d, 18d and 25a; COTD 1d.

    1.5* / 3.5*

    Many thanks to Dada and to Senf

  8. A foxy but splendid Dada, with all kinds of bodily action and drama, and so much to like, especially 1d, 20a, 5d, & 18d (probably an old chestnut but still a good one), but my COTD is 11a. A special Clarkie goes to 12a because the ‘trip’ tripped me up last time. About as wily as Dada gets but very enjoyable. Thanks to Senf (especially for parsing 8d) and Dada. 3* / 4.5*

  9. Think I got more satisfaction from completion than enjoyment along the way but that’s not unusual for me with this setter. Our reviewer’s mention of ‘quirky’ fills the bill nicely.
    Top two here were 20a & 1d.

    Thanks to Dada and to Senf for the hints.

  10. Experience shows that anyone who expects a Dada Sunday puzzle to be a ‘rerun’ of what Chalicea and Cephas provide for us on a Saturday is sadly mistaken. It hasn’t happened for the last 183 Sundays and I don’t expect it to happen for the next 183 Sundays or for how long Dada continues to be our Sunday setter.

    Thank goodness I only have to solve half of the puzzle to be able to come up with some hints! :wink: :wink:

    1. Ah yes I hadn’t thought about that however it must be why I often find clues which have stumped me are unhinted 🙂.

  11. I found Dada a bit on the difficult side this morning. I had to fight with it most of the time, which is no bad thing – it does one good to be stretched and this certainly tested my grey cells. Favourite clues today are 9a, 22a and 22d but, again, I have no COTD.

    Many thanks to Dada but I just was not with you today. Thank you, Senf for helping make sense of it.

  12. i don’t understand this “quirky “ tag. Dada may be different from the others. I think Ray T is different too. Sylvanus, Giovanni, also. And all the others . Are they all quirky because they’re different from the each other? I thought that was the point, different setters, different challenges.

    Surely a range of different setters with different styles broadens one’s experience and skills in solving? That’s the way I view it. I welcome differences. It would be a bit boring if they were all the same wouldn’t it?

    1. My use of ‘quirky’ is a very subjective assessment of the puzzle, not the setter, which others might not agree with.

      In my preamble, I try to include comments that will stimulate conversation and, perhaps, irritate and annoy. I seem to succeed on most Sundays.

      1. I think Senf has his own vocabulary which we’ve all got used to now and fully understand. If this puzzle isn’t “quirky” what is?

  13. Sorry about the continuing inclement weather Senf, but it may come in as an aide memoire for the start of today’s toughie.
    I can’t remember the last time I saw an 18d or 11a.
    I did like 24a and recall a recent film where he had tea with a very different author.
    Thanks to Senf and Dada. Time for another cup of coffee and a bit of the Giro d’Italia.

  14. This took me a while and, I’m sorry, I found this quirky as well! The little 25a held me up the longest. No particular favourites. Yesterday’s main obituary in the DT was for Robert Gillmor, a fellow resident of Cley. He was a super talented and extremely modest man and we have several of his pictures. As the piece says, his name may not be familiar but his work most definitely is and he devised the avocet logo for the RSPB. The whole obit makes for a really interesting read.

  15. We didn’t find this quirky but it did require some head scratching. Favourite was 22d. Thanks to Dada and Senf.

  16. At first I thought this was going to be a hard slog but then I went on pangram alert which helped me to get 22 a/d on which I was totally stuck. It isn’t a pangram but we are only one elusive letter missing I think. I did yesterday’s puzzle in the train going up to London – and a very good workout it was too. Many thanks to the setter. It was very hot in the capital and it is a long time since I have seen so much abundant flesh and so scantily clothed. I don’t get out much. Today in Cambridge it is cold and pouring with rain which is good for my beans. Many thanks to Senf for explaining the why and how of 11a, and to the industrious /ingenious setter. 12a?

    1. When did the rain start DG? We are still waiting for some up here and I think it comes a couple of hours after Cambridge.

      1. About 2pm and now really raining hard. Sods Law because George watered the beans this morning. Our neighbours from the Gin Path have gone to Heacham for the day. Wonder if they will get wet?

  17. Sometimes I can finish a Dada, sometimes I can get most of the way. Today was just hard work, and with less than half completed I’m giving up as the day is getting away from me. Can’t win them all. But I am really enjoyed The NY Times Spelling Bee (offered on Wordle). Thanks to Dada and Senf.
    Really hoping somehow, some way, the Azov soldiers can be saved.

  18. Fully agree with Senf that this was Dada at the quirkiest he has been at for some time. Definitely some head scratching and also a few PDM’s with loud clattering as the tea tray was dropped !!
    3*/5* for me as when I did get the parsing and answers it was satisfying.
    Favourites today were many but top 5 for me were 15a, 22a, 4d, 18d & 22d with winner 22a very clever, but so were many others … like 15a too.

    Thanks for challenge Dada and Senf for the hints confirming my bung ins were correct.

    Wordle in 3 and Canuckle in 4

  19. At one point I thought I wasn’t going to be able to complete this, but perseverance and some lateral thinking got me over the line. Hard work but ultimately satisfying, a well crafted puzzle.
    My favourite was 22d, I imagine it might be an oldie, but don’t recall seeing it before.
    Thanks to Dada and Senf

  20. This was, for me, one of those puzzles where the first run through yielded very few answers, and I thought I was going to struggle; but a second, slower and more considered approach did the job. 12a was easily my favourite, with 8 and 25a being my two final entries.

    Thanks Dada and Senf.

  21. Getting better at Dada, I completed six, I think it was five last week. No worries, I have yesterday’s puzzle on hand and look forward to that. A very fraught couple of days so not surprised the tiny brain is on hold.
    Fave of the ones I did 11a, and I think I got 12a, doesn’t it have to do with those delightful Aussies?
    Thanks Dada, and huge hugs and appreciation to Senf for unravelling that lot. Wordle in 5. I think I saw where they’re going to make you pay for future Wordles, not surprised, I hope they make it cheap enough for the likes of me.

    1. Sorry, but I wouldn’t pay for Wordle. I’m on a run of 127 and almost looking forward to a failure so I can stop! I love Quordle tho.

    2. I’ve been doing their Spelling Bee too. I think the rate is $5 a month or $40 a year to access all their puzzles.

  22. Fully agree with Stephen. Top notch & certainly his best for some time. Couple of good parsing head scratches (4&8d in particular) but an otherwise straightforward solve. 4d my pick for the surface & devious wordplay & also very much liked 9&15a among a number of good clues.
    Thanks to D&S.
    Wordle in another disappointing 5 (last 4 correct at 3)

  23. Toughest Dada for quite a while fo me… usual, lots of lateral thinking required…..13d eluded me and for what it’s worth seemed a weak clue, but otherwise all good mental exercise…

  24. Too busy yesterday playing hostess (with the mostest?) so only just got around to this. I found it a curious combination of some crafty clues but also several no-nos. SW came last where a couple of stumbling blocks were unfortunately unhinted. Fav was probably 3d. Thank you Dada (still haven’t found your wavelength!) and Senf.

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