Sunday Toughie 28 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Sunday Toughie 28 (Hints)

Sunday Toughie No 28 by Zandio

Hints and Tips by Sloop John Bee

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A definite Toughie today with a lot of the parsings following the solutions by a country mile. My usual dilemma is restricting the hints to about half, as there are tricky bits to most of them. There are not many pure anagrams but I have left the lurkers unhinted, save that they are both reversed.
Anyway, here we go with an evenly split 14/28 hints.

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! – I think that sentence is a bit redundant. You have all been so helpful in sorting out prior parsing failures, and I am sure I will need similar help again. Don’t go too far though as the village elders have been exercising the RED pencil on the Saturday 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: Remember the site rules and play nicely.



1a One’s pencilled in as reserve to go by second vessel (10)
S for second and a small sea-going vessel are followed by reserve in the sense of securing a table at a restaurant perhaps.

10a Opposed to party faction’s twisted solutions (9)
A synonym of opposed to, crosswordland’s usual party and a reversal of a faction make up these solutions to a poisoning perhaps.

12a Pine props put down by old man, wiggly things (5-4-4)
To pine as in yearn for and the props that keep your bum from the floor, go after your old man.

15a Out of a black tower (6)
A from the clue, B for black and a synonym of tower over.

21a When prices jump or vault, it’s said makers will be twitchy and tense (7,6)
A homophone of a vault underneath your floor, an anagram of makers and t for tense. When vendors get the upper hand.

24a Goat fruitcake? It could be edible (9)
What goats do to get your attention and a slightly crazy fruitcake, I wouldn’t, but many do eat them.

27a The old retiring teacher sadly consuming cold dish (3-7)
An archaic spelling of the is reversed, followed by an anagram of teacher with a c for cold.


1d Heard cracks when cycling and turned round (4)
A synonym of cracks or witticisms cycles the last letter to the beginning to become a synonym of turned around.

3d Revolutionary sadder about eating the same English food (7,6)
Two copies of one of our usual revolutionaries ( Revolutionary… the same) contain an anagram of sadder followed by E for English.
I have just been eating a very tasty welsh example of this foodstuff from the Hafod Dairy.

7d Botched data read upside down, oddly lacking style (3,4)
Reverse the first three words (read upside down in a down clue) and remove the odd letters. (oddly lacking)

Art deco: The opulent style that still inspires our imaginations
11d Maybe setter’s tight after time off — it’s a mess (4,9)
We are not seeking Zandio here but Maybe setter implies that setter is an example of the animal we seek. Followed by some time off work and a synonym of tight, for a right mess.

Chef Dog Makes Breakfast - I Can Has Cheezburger?

13d Sense head will go on strike — there’s much swearing here (7,3)
A singular of your senses, a headland and to strike with a fist combine. To swear to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

16d Jumbo seen in show with an act that’s often repeated (8)
A show or performance, an from the clue and a facial mannerism that is often repeated.

23d Leader’s talent’s giving second half priority (4)
Practical skills or talents reverse the last two letters to the front for a leader of the Russian empire.

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20 comments on “Sunday Toughie 28 (Hints)

  1. I nearly gave up with only about half of the clues solved, but took a break (watched some baseball) and returned, and with a bit of electronic help (two letters, serendipitously chosen) managed a very satisfying ‘finish’. So even though it’s technically a DNF, it’s almost the best I have done lately on one of these Sunday Toughies, which seem in the same league with our Thursday & Friday ones. 27 is my COTD because it made me laugh and got me going again when I faltered. Thanks to SJB, especially for helping me parse a couple, and to Zandio.

    1. I thought that 27a would have amused you but tried to refrain from referring to retired teachers as archaic.

  2. Self-inflicted problem with 16d for which I had a very different ‘show’ in mind but that was resolved once a few checkers fell into place.
    Podium places went to 1,12&27a all of which made me smile.

    Thanks to Zandio and to SJB for the hints and the chance to watch those excellent performers giving their rendition of a famous piece from Bach.

  3. An enjoyable if not overly tough puzzle – thanks to Zandio and SJB.
    On my podium are 15a, 1d and 13d.

  4. Hello, compiler here. Thanks for taking the time to solve, analyse and discuss. Enjoy the rest of this sunny Sunday.

  5. Ha ha ha you seem to have an oft repeated facial mannerism and the answer for 22d in your comment. If you were not our esteemed setter you may be redacted.
    Joking apart thanks for popping in.

  6. A fun-filled crossword enjoyed in our very 22d garden this afternoon. I thought it contained some particularly clever ‘misleads’. No single favourite so I’ll award top podium medals as if it were an Olympic rugby event: 1a, 21a, 1d, 2d, 4d, 20d and 22d. Thank you, Zandio, and my thanks also to SJB for his nicely-illustrated hints. Now back to the 22d garden and a nice glass of something chilled… :bye:

    1. I have already joined you with a rather pleasant local gin from about 3 or 4 miles upstream.

  7. I have already joined you with a rather pleasant local gin from about 3 or 4 miles upstream.

    Oops better make mine a double

  8. Well I am on my second gin & tonic – much needed after coping with that! Thanks for the tips, SJB – I would never have completed it without you and I am still not too sure about 6a – I had put in a well known Swedish group but it became obvious that I was wrong. So I messed up which means I cannot submit my offering and possibly win a fourth pen (which would really make Steve cross). Thanks to Zandio, I agree with Jane’s selection. What a glorious day it has been – although I would have liked a good downpour for my garden.

    1. I think I may have to send Mama Bee on an old persons holiday…. Send All Grannies Away

    2. You have won four pens, Daisygirl? I’m not cross – just full of admiration. 😎

  9. Had a quick look at this earlier & could make neither head nor tail of it – only 4 answers.
    Back from a nice day out & a lovely Sunday lunch at The Cock Inn at Sarratt & this time the pennies slowly began to drop. Still 3 to go – 6&25a plus23d – which can wait for later.
    Gazza might not have found it overly tough but plenty tricky enough for me though perhaps not quite as impenetrable as it first appeared to be. Very enjoyable.
    Thanks to Zandio & SJB – will read your review later

  10. Super Sunday Toughie, tackled from the S to the N. Much pleasure and enjoyment throughout, thank you Zandio, and SJB for the blog.

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