ST 3187 (full review) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 3187 (full review)

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 3187

A full review by Rahmat Ali

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This puzzle was published on 20th Nov 2022

BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ****

Greetings from Kolkata. A slightly tougher Sunday puzzle of Dada that I enjoyed solving and thereafter writing a full review for your kind perusal and valuable feedback.

I was familiar with the biblical king most famous for his wisdom – Solomon, the answer to the clue of 12a, even before the age of ten. I read about him in various books including The Pictorial History and the Bible. He was a king of ancient Israel and the son and successor of David, according to the Hebrew Bible and the Old Testament. He built the First Temple in Jerusalem, dedicating the temple to Yahweh, the word for God in Judaism. Pleased with his sacrifice, God appeared to him in a dream and asked what Solomon wanted from Him. Solomon asked for wisdom so as to better rule and guide his people. His wish was granted. In course of time, he became famous for his wisdom. In the New Testament, he is portrayed as a teacher of wisdom excelled by Jesus of Nazareth. In the Quran, he is considered to be a major Islamic prophet and referred to in Arabic as Sulaiman.

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1a    Flock is going to race madly round back of pen (12)
CONGREGATION: An anagram (madly) of GOING TO RACE placed around (round) the back or last letter of [PE]N takes to the definition of a group of worshippers attending a specific place of Christian worship

8a    Just finished, eh? (7)
UPRIGHT: A charade of UP (finished) as ended, especially of time and RIGHT (eh) as an informal exclamation used to indicate agreement or to acknowledge a statement or order guides to the definition of an adjective meaning honest, just or habitually honourable or righteous

9a    Sum up about problematic situation that’s paid much respect (7)
ADMIRED: ADD (sum up) as to put together two or more numbers or amounts to calculate their total value placed around (about) MIRE (problematic situation) as a complicated or unpleasant situation from which it is difficult to extricate oneself, arriving at the definition of a verb in the past tense meaning regarded with respected or warm approval

11a    Needle in canine? (7)
POINTER: Double nounal definition; the first being a long, thin piece of metal on a scale or dial which moves to indicate a figure or position and the second referring to a dog of a breed that on scenting game stands rigid looking towards it

12a    Old king with day on his own? (7)
SOLOMON: The definition of the biblical king known in the ancient world for his wisdom and the glory of his kingdom is arrived at from MON (day) as the day of the week before Tuesday and following Sunday placed after (on) SOLO (his own) as all by himself

13a    School where girls initially dressed in red (5)
RUGBY: The first or initial letter (initially) of G[IRLS] covered (dressed) in RUBY (red) as an intense purplish-red colour leads to the definition of an English independent boarding school for pupils aged 13-18 in Rugby, Warwickshire, England that started as a free grammar school for local boys when founded in 1567

14a    Cover damaged urn in case (9)
INSURANCE: An anagram (damaged) of URN IN CASE guides to the definition of a means of protection from financial loss in which, in exchange for a fee, a party agrees to guarantee another party compensation in the event of a certain loss, damage or injury

16a    Ball: fast player has passed one, nearly scoring initially (9)
INSWINGER: WINGER (fast player) as an attacking player on the wing in football, hockey etc coming after (has passed) a combo of I (one) as the Roman numeral for one and the first or initial letters (initially) of N[EARLY] and S[CORING], arriving at the definition of a ball bowled so as to swerve to leg, as in cricket or a ball kicked so as to swing in towards the goal or the centre of the pitch, as in football

19a    Hole where star is being pulled back (5)
SINUS: A combo of SUN (star) as the star round which the earth orbits and IS from the clue being made to return (pulled back) as a reversal in the across clue, taking to the definition of a cavity within a bone or other tissue, especially one in the bones of the face or skull connecting with the nasal cavities

21a    Person who criticises a door-to-door salesman, perhaps? (7)
KNOCKER: Double nounal definition; the second being a person who buys or sells from door to door, especially with intent to deceive that leads to the first referring to a person who continually finds fault

23a    Certainly beyond yours truly, a limit (7)
MEASURE: SURE (certainly) as certainly or without doubt or question, used for emphasis placed after (beyond) a combo of ME (yours truly) as used by a speaker to refer to himself or herself as the object of a verb or preposition and A from the clue, taking to the definition of a noun meaning a fixed or suitable limit

24a    Cosmetic liquids, not oils for massaging (7)
LOTIONS: An anagram (for massaging) of NOT OILS guides to the definition of thick, smooth liquid preparations designed to be applied to the skin for medicinal or cosmetic purposes

25a    A staggering dog? (7)
LURCHER: A cryptic definition of a cross-bred dog who is trained to hunt silently

26a    Small creature in scary West Sussex town, did you say? (6-6)
CREEPY-CRAWLY: CREEPY (scary) as causing an unpleasant feeling of fear or unease and CRAWLEY (West Sussex town) as a large town and borough in West Sussex, England serving as a homophone heard by the audience (did you say?) take to the definition of a spider, worm or other small flightless creature, especially when considered unpleasant or frightening


1d    Wonderful family rescued by dog, shortly (7)
CORKING: KIN (family) as one’s family and relations saved and welcomed in (rescued) by CORG[I] (dog) as a dog of a short-legged breed with a foxlike head that has been shortened with the removal of its last letter (shortly), taking to the definition of an adjective denoting very good or excellent

2d    Very often gallant, by the sound of it? (7)
NIGHTLY: KNIGHTLY (gallant) as chivalrous, gallant and courtly as befitting a knight or a man who served his sovereign or lord as a mounted soldier in armour serving as a homophone heard by the audience (by the sound of it), arriving at the definition of an adjective meaning repeatedly happening by night or every night

3d    Runner hampered with it, good on the way back (9)
RETURNING: An anagram (hampered) of a combo of RUNNER and (with) IT guides to the definition of a present participle verb meaning coming back to the previous place

4d    Some colossal galleon taking reciprocal course, vessel … (5)
GLASS: Part of or hidden inside (some) of coloSSAL Galleon taking a way back (reciprocal course) as a reversal in the down clue takes to the definition of a drinking container made from glass

5d    … one of those for circus performer (7)
TUMBLER: Double nounal definition; the second being an acrobat or one who performs tumbling feats that leads to the first referring to a drinking glass without foot or stem and originally with pointed or convex base

6d    Those in boat twisting one’s arm (7)
OARSMEN: An anagram (twisting) of ONE’S ARM guides to the definition of rowers, especially as members of a racing team

7d    Use force getting sovereign and five cents for bread (12)
PUMPERNICKEL: PUMP (use force) as to force liquid or gas to move by or as if by means of a pump followed by (getting) ER (sovereign) as the abbreviation for Edwardus Rex in New Latin meaning King Edward and NICKEL (five cents) as a US or Canadian coin worth five cents, taking to the definition of a dark, dense German bread made from coarsely ground wholemeal rye

10d    Long time in awful dry season: important to plant in it (7,5)
DONKEY’S YEARS: An anagram (awful) of DRY SEASON having KEY (important) as vital, essential or crucial to insert (plant) in it, leading to the definition of an informal term for a very long time

15d    Bike, confusing device (9)
SCRAMBLER: Double nounal definition; the second being an electronic device that mixes and confuses telecommunications signals in order to make them unintelligible through certain circuits that leads to the first referring to a motorcycle for racing over rough and hilly ground

17d    Beauty, one taking snuff? (7)
SNORTER: Double nounal definition; the second being a person who snorts or inhales cocaine or a powdered preparation of tobacco through the nose that takes to the first denoting a thing that is an extreme or remarkable example of its kind, especially for its strength or severity

18d    Terrible risk on ‘ouse, infuriating (7)
IRKSOME: An anagram (terrible) of RISK followed by ‘OME (‘ouse) as the Cockney sound in word for home that is the ‘ouse or the house where one lives permanently, especially as a member of a family or household, arriving at the definition of an adjective meaning irritating or annoying

19d    Pole on line for bird (7)
SPARROW: SPAR (pole) as a thick, strong pole such as is used for a mast or yard on a ship placed upon (on) ROW (line) as a horizontal line of entries in a table or a line of seats in a theatre in the down clue takes to the definition of a small Old-World bird related to the weaver birds, typically with brown and grey plumage

20d    X-certificate, like nothing one’s heard? (7)
NAUGHTY: The definition of an adjective meaning a film classification indicating a film that may not be publicly shown to anyone under 18, usually because they contained violence, sex or bad language is arrived at from a homophone heard by the audience (heard) of NOUGHT-Y (like nothing)

22d    Out of practice, easily relied upon to lose lead (5)
RUSTY: [T]RUSTY (easily relied upon) as used for describing a person or thing that one has known or had for a long time and can easily rely on that has its head or leading letter (head) to be removed (lose), arriving at the definition of an adjective meaning impaired by lack of recent practice, especially of a skill or knowledge

There were several clues that I liked in this puzzle such as 1a, 12a, 16a, 19a, 21a, 23a, 25a, 26a, 1d, 2d, 4/5d, 7d, 10d and 20d; the best of the lot being 26a. Thanks to BD for the encouragement, to Dada for the entertainment and to Gazza for the assistance. Looking forward to being here again. Have a gorgeous day.

3 comments on “ST 3187 (full review)
Leave your own comment 

  1. One advantage of being so far in arrears is being able to come straight to the full review when confounded by an answer.

    When we got the ‘not all correct’ type message we assumed the culprit to be our last one in, 17d, but we just couldn’t come up with another answer. Turned out I don’t know how to spell ‘Solomon’ – and funnily enough, the parsing made much more sense once that was corrected.

    Thank you Rahmat for this, and all you Full Reviews.

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