Sunday Toughie 19 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Sunday Toughie 19 (Hints)

Sunday Toughie No 19 by Robyn

Hints and Tips by Sloop John Bee

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This may be a bit brief today as I have to attend a speed awareness course this morning, when it is over (about 10:30) I will endeavour to come and garnish the blog. It all depends on how quickly I solved this last night (tonight as I write this) rather than how quickly I drove through Horton in Ribblesdale in April !.

Thanks to Robyn for a toughie that while still tricky didn’t delay me so long that I haven’t had time to attend my speed awareness course and even left time for me to add some pics to go along with the hints. Mustafa has pointed out that there is a nice little Nina in the four three letter answers.

I have hinted at exactly half of today’s clues and further nudges can be seen in the images. Dear reader you have always treated the hints with the respect BD asks for below, so once again I will be tolerant of some discussion about tricky parsings. I probably need the help.

As it is a Prize puzzle I can only hint at a few and hope that will give you the checkers and inspiration to go further. I’ll be back just after the closing date with the full blog. Don’t forget to follow BD’s instructions in RED at the bottom of the hints!

I hope I don’t have to redact any comments but I am new at this and don’t want to rock the boat. If in doubt, I’ll rub it out!

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: Remember the site rules and play nicely.


6a    Collapsed and woke in thong that’s tight (4,2,7)
A partial anagram to start, What happens when you arise from a collapse woke, and an anagram of in thong? That’s tight being an anagram indicator Thanks Gazza and Mustafa. loose definition of a situation that amounts to not very much.

9a    Protest one hour back inflamed complaint (8)
A protest of non-violent civil disobedience, the letter that looks like one, and an abbreviation of hour are all reversed (back) to satisfy what remains as the definition.

12a    Spy author’s losing following, without 1000 followers (8)
A very well-known author of Spy novels loses the abbreviation for following and adds a Roman numeral for 1000. That’s only 7 letters I hear you cry, the ‘s of ‘author’s’ allows you to pluralise him.

16a    Good for Pierre, say, to eat egg or mushroom (7)
I imagine Ice Hockey fans may be thinking of a well known Canadian here, but it is not he we seek, but how a typical Frenchman named Pierre may say ‘good’. This word contains (to eat) a synonym of egg as in encourage.

23a    Hike round area on sierra — hurry after losing kit (6)
To rush around without ones ‘kit’ on, A synonym of hike, around an abbreviation for area, all put on the letter that sierra represents.

Exclusive: We track down Britain's first sporting streaker - and he's planning a return to Lord's | The Independent | The Independent

Well Done England, and a fine knock from Joe Root today.

25a    Gently stuff in a kind of white meat (8)
A musical notation for gently, and a kind of Italian white wine surround a synonym of stuff.

27a    Seizing retired rugby player, international valuing tours (13)
A type of value or assessment of worth goes around (tours) an abbreviation for international and follows a retired rugby player.


1d    Dropping ball in front of goal (8)
The letter that looks like a ball goes in front of a goal or purpose for which one is sent.

4d    A bit of heart shown by American, half victorious (6)
One of our usual Americans heads the first half of a 10 letter word for victorious.

6d    Maybe outcome of freezingasylum seeker’s wish (6,2,5)
In physics matter can exist in four forms, the transition from liquid to solid is called freezing. An asylum seeker who wishes to alter his nationality desires the same.

7d    Far from dear child being attracted by silver clothes (5,3,1,4)
The phrase suggested by something that is cheap as opposed to dear. A synonym of attracted by, and one’s male child clothed in the chemical symbol for silver. I am reminded of an old BBC Antique’s programme, featuring Arthur Negas, introduced by a singing bird in a cage, but all the YT clips I can find give too much away for a prize crossword.

17d    Going against the flow, puts pants on early in the day (8)
pants here is an anagram indicator applied to the preceding word, puts. It is applied to one of our usual abouts and the abbreviation for how we refer to the part of the day that is before noon.

19d    Those who oppose polluters save lake (7)
A synonym of polluters loses the abbreviation for lake and becomes those who vehemently oppose.

22d     Endless shock about formidable female (6)
A synonym of shock loses its last letter and adds another about from the cruciverbalists’ lexicon.


Just a lovely piece of music and in no way relevant to the deer I hunted down with my car the other day.



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10 comments on “Sunday Toughie 19 (Hints)

  1. Really enjoyable with some cracking clues – thanks to Robyn and to SJB.
    The clues I liked best were 10a, 14a and the excellent 13/15d pair.

    The definition in 6a is the first word with the last bit being the anagram indicator.

  2. I thought this a great puzzle – tackled this morning while listening to TMS probably meant I paid neither the attention each deserved, but to be listening when Joe Root made his century & 10,000th run, let alone with England winning, made it worthwhile.

    Tackled clockwise from the NE, this was a good Sunday morning mental workout. With so many very good clues it seems unfair to highlight any in particular, but16a and 18d would have been sharing top spot were it not for the superb combo/Nina of the four short answers, which collectively must take the laurels. I agree with Gazza re the parsing of 6a.

    2.5* / 4*

    Many thanks indeed to the setter, and of course to SJB – hope the course was useful!

    1. The middle letter of 24a was baffling me until I read this post, so thank you for pointing out the connection.

      1. Had the same problem, but with middle letter of 10a. All clear when I read the post.
        Quite a true toughie for me

  3. A fine toughie from one of my favourite setters – and I spotted the tiny Nina too

    Many thanks to Robyn and SJB

  4. I look forward to your full review of this very challenging Toughie, SJB, as I do not understand ‘We hear you must cut bigger’ in 14a, though I think I know what the definition is. Nor do I understand the ‘retired Rugby player’ reference (actual name? generic term?) or the synonym for ‘valuing’ in 27a. Even though I failed to finish, I fared fairly well in this very fine Robyn offering. Too many favourites to cite, though I especially liked the two long vertical clues and the long one at the top. Thanks to Robyn and to SJB.

  5. Still not sure that I can gel with this setter and it did take me a fair while to get through this one.
    Agree with those who nominated the small Nina as favourite although I doubt I’d have noticed it without their input.

    Thanks to Robyn and to John for the hints.

  6. Oh dear, really behind on this – a middle of a sleepless night solve with cup of drinking chocolate. Jolly hard but immensely satisfying to solve with the exception of 14a which eludes me! Many thanks to the setter and SJB

    1. You and Robert both, it is a letter you hear when you say you in a synonym of bigger in terms of length and is something you loaf about on in the sun, not that I suspect you of doing much loafing, such a busy little Bee 🐝 like yourself.

  7. This excellent puzzle provided a fitting end to a day of enjoyable test cricket (England test cricket not having been particularly enjoyable for some time!) and neighbourhood Jubilee celebrations :smile:
    19d and 25a were put aside overnight but the penny dropped on 25a when I had a fresh look this morning. It was pleasing to see a ‘linked’ pair of clues (13/15d) having such a clear and well constructed link. Other favourites were 6a, 10a, 20a, 2d and 6d. Well done to those who spotted the clever Nina – I wasn’t clever enough!
    Thank you, Robyn, for preparing such an entertaining crossword puzzle.
    SJB – I enjoyed the mysterious manifestation of anonymous pictorial hints for 5d and 21d :wink:

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