Toughie No 2937 by Donnybrook
Hints and tips by StephenL
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ****
Hello everyone from a beautifully sunny South Devon where we seem to be enjoying a bit of an Indian Summer. Long may it continue, it’s certainly extending my sea swimming year.
Donnybrook kicks off the Toughie week with a puzzle that was typically quirky and as usual with this setter, a lot of fun, giving me a couple of real LOL moments.
I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did.
Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.
1a Gulag has thirty guards filled with terror (6)
AGHAST: Hidden in the clue (guards)
4a Analysis of rhythm in second musical round is revolutionary (8)
SCANSION: The abbreviation for Second and a compositional music technique into which is inserted a reversal (revolutionary) of IS from the clue.
10a Dives right in with mog chasing animated mutt? (9)
PLUTOCRAT: Append a mog(gy) into which is inserted the abbreviation for Right, to a Disney cartoon dog, giving someone who obtains power through wealth. Definitely one to get from checkers and wordplay rather than the definition!
11a Water coming down on good farm crop (5)
GRAIN: The abbreviation for Good us followed by some water “coming down” from the sky.
12a & 6 Down Its wheels fit — thinking that regularly makes work? (7,5)
TWELFTH: For this and 6d take the regular or alternate letters from the first five words of the clue, giving a works of Shakespeare. Very clever.
13a East German prosperous one unable to face truth (7)
OSTRICH: The German word for East is followed by a synonym of prosperous or well-off.
14a On the counter, a cook’s last supplies of meat that’s marinated (5)
TIKKA: Start with A from the clue, add the final letter of cooK and some (military say) supplies. Reverse the result (on the counter)
15a Worthy Scottish town given mention (8)
STERLING: This synonym of worthy sounds like (given mention) a Scottish town 26 miles to the east of Glasgow.
18a Division in corporation to receive one billion for old land (8)
HIBERNIA: Insert the letter that looks like the number one and the abbreviation for Billion into a “division in corporation”, the corporation being a (distended) tummy! Brilliant clue.
20a Starter for ten coming into 12 is unacceptable (3,2)
NOT ON: Insert the initial letter of Ten into the time of day that twelve represents.
23a Gear soldiers packed in dismay (7)
APPAREL: Another insertion, this time the abbreviation for Royal Engineers inside a synonym of dismay as a verb
25a Double spread turned into substantial publication (7)
TWOSOME:. Reverse (turned) a synonym of spread as a verb (as one might some seeds) and insert the result into a lengthy or heavy publication
26a 12 6 character abused wants old rocker thrown out (5)
VIOLA: A synonym of abused loses an abbreviated fifties (I think!) rocker.
27a Brother to 26 stirred beans, adding in wine (9)
SEBASTIAN: Insert one of crosswordland’s favourite (Italian sparkling) wines into an anagram (stirred) of beans.
28a Muscle in on government’s watch (8)
SPECTATE: Insert a chest muscle, much loved by bodybuilders into a synonym of government or administration.
29a Mountain storm curtailed in former province (6)
BENGAL: The first name of a Scottish mountain and a storm with its final letter removed.
1d Primate harbouring little lust? (8)
APPETITE: A three letter primate goes around (harbouring) a synonym of small or slender.
2d Long mail I see written up by upper-class idiot (7)
HAUBERK: Start with a reversal (written up) of an exclamation that could mean “I see”. Add the letter representing upper-class and a dated synonym of idiot or fool, giving a full length coat of chain mail. Tenuous link but I like this.
3d One easily upset, female stops bird getting eaten by reptile (9)
SNOWFLAKE: Insert the abbreviation for Female into (stops) a “wise” bird and Insert the result into a very unappealing reptile.
5d Renovated Art Deco adorns hotel — beauty represented in set piece (7-3,4)
CATHODE-RAY TUBE: Anagram (renovated) of ART DECO, and the abbreviation for Hotel plus an anagram (represented) of BEAUTY.
6d See 12a
NIGHT: See hint at 12a
7d Garibaldi perhaps secure at island in revolution (7)
ITALIAN: Start with a synonym of secure as a verb, add AT from the clue and the abbreviation for Island. Reverse the lot (in revolution)
8d Intervals at home: time to visit our doctors and nurses? (6)
NINTHS: Start with the usual 2-letter word meaning at home. Add the abbreviation for Time and insert the result (to visit) into the body for which the vast majority of doctors and nurses work.
9d Two composers slaughtered? (6,3,5)
BRAHMS AND LISZT: The slaughtered here is “drunk” or another word, for which the solution is Cockney rhyming slang.
16d Spiny lobster, tuna and sole? Finally choosing flounders! (9)
LANGOUSTE: A clever anagram (flounders) of TUNA, SOLE and the final letter of choosinG.
17d Wicked inside where tango gives way to foxtrot (8)
INFERNAL: A synonym of inside loses the letter for Tango in the NATO phonetic alphabet for that of Foxtrot.
19d Cave in Spain is base for one male tramp (7)
IMPLODE: The IVR code for Spain is below (base for in a down clue) the letter that looks like the number one, the abbreviation for Male and a synonym of tramp as a verb.
21d Showing impatience as cabbie might in London district? (7)
TOOTING: A mildly cryptic definition, how a cabbie may express impatience is also a district of London.
22d No Scots against us? Here’s red mole! (6)
NAEVUS: Start with how a Scotsman may say “no”. Add the abbreviation for Versus (against) and US from the clue. Another one from wordplay and checkers!
24d Respond disapprovingly in connection with law passed (5)
REACT: The usual preposition meaning in connection with and a parliamentary law.
Great stuff, my winners are 2&3d with top spot going to 18a.
I hope the setter calls in as I know he’ll appreciate the drumming by the late great Keith Moon in this Who classic.