ST 3191 (full review) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 3191 (full review)

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 3191

A full review by Rahmat Ali

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This puzzle was published on 18th Dec 2022

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

Greetings from Kolkata. A bit tougher Sunday puzzle of Dada that I overall enjoyed solving and now have the pleasure of presenting to you a full review of the same for your kind perusal and valuable feedback.

I became interested in knowing the finer points of ‘temple’, the answer to the clue of 3d, and hence visited the net. It is the flattened region on either side of the forehead in human beings. The pterion is the area where four skull bones, viz., the frontal, parietal, temporal and sphenoid meet in the skull. It is located on the side of the skull, just behind the temple. Hence, the temple serves as a latch to the pterion. The temporal muscle covers this area and is used during mastication. The temporal bone, made up of five smaller parts, fuses together before birth. Though thin, the four skull bones are relatively strong, but the point at which they meet, the pterion area, is the weakest one and highly vulnerable due to absence of any solid bone beneath. A temporal bone fracture may cause facial paralysis, hearing loss, bruising behind the ear as also bleeding from the ear. The Maori warriors of the first nations tribes of New Zealand and Australia used to carry with them to their battlefield, inter alia, the patu onewa, a flat, heavy club carved from stones such as basalt, and sometimes jade, for the specific purpose of delivering a fatal, crushing blow to the temple.

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7a    Maestro adding last of paint to drunken cherubs (8)
SCHUBERT: The definition of the Austrian composer of the late Classical and Romantic eras, known for his compositions for voice and piano is arrived at by adding (placed afterwards) the final or terminal letter (last) of [PAIN]T to an anagram (drunken) of CHERUBS

9a    Eye  someone gorgeous (6)
LOOKER: Double definition; the first being the cryptic construction of the organ of sight or vision whose function is to look on or observe narrowly that leads to the second a colloquial term for a person who has good look or is very attractive or seductive, especially a woman

10a    Direction taken into Lowestoft (4)
WEST: Part of or hidden inside (taken into) [LO]WEST[OFT] takes to the definition of the direction towards the point of the horizon where the sun sets at the equinoxes, on the left-hand side of a person facing north or the part of the horizon lying in this direction

11a    Super coins forged, items struck (10)
PERCUSSION: An anagram (forged) of SUPER COINS guides to the definition of musical instruments played by striking with the hand or with a stick or beater, or by shaking, including drums, cymbals, xylophones, gongs, bells and rattles

12a    Basic article in magazine, say (6)
STAPLE: Double definition; the first being an adjective meaning leading, main or basic, especially in terms of production, trade or consumption and the second a noun referring to a thin bit of wire with right-angled end pieces used to fasten pages of a magazine together

14a    Vulnerable writer after extra opportunities, initially (4,4)
WIDE OPEN: PEN (writer) as an instrument used for writing preceded by or coming after (after) a combo of WIDE (extra) as a ball that is judged to be too wide of the stumps for the batter to play, for which an extra is awarded to the batting side as in cricket and the first or initial letter (initially) of O[PPORTUNITIES], arriving at the definition of a phrase meaning very vulnerable or unprotected

15a    Stealing some company car, I promptly retired (6)
PIRACY: Part of or hidden inside (some) companY CAR, I Promptly that has retreated (retired) as a reversal in the across clue, guiding to the definition of the practice of attacking and robbing ships at sea or the unauthorised use or reproduction of another’s work

17a    Hollow weapon, it getting loaded with first of pellets (6)
ARMPIT: A combo of ARM (weapon) as a weapon or a means of offence and defence and IT from the clue taking inside (loaded) as getting filled up with the first or initial letter (first) of P[ELLETS], arriving at the definition of the hollow under the arm at the shoulder

20a    Physician, American senior in TV programme (8)
DOCUSOAP: A charade of DOC (physician) as a familiar contraction of doctor, US (American) as the adjectival abbreviation for the United States or belonging to the United States and OAP (senior) as the abbreviation for old-age pensioner who is a senior or senior citizen guides to the definition of a television serial programme in which the real-life activities of a group of people are presented in soap-opera style

22a    Leave single thread (6)
STRAND: Double definition; the second being a noun referring to a single thin length of thread, fibre or wire twisted or plaited with others to form a rope, cord or the like that leads to the first a verb meaning to leave in a strange or an unfavourable place, especially without funds or means to depart

23a    Cowgirl: she trained dog (5,5)
WELSH CORGI: An anagram (trained) of COWGIRL SHE guides to the definition of a short-legged long-backed dog with erect ears and a foxlike head of either of two breeds of Welsh origin, viz., Pembroke Welsh Corgi and Cardigan Welsh Corgi

24a    Chest in smithereens (4)
BUST: Double definition; the first referring to a woman’s chest as measured around her breast that takes to the second an adjective meaning damaged or broken

25a    Dust and rock on the beach? (6)
ASHORE: A charade of ASH (dust) as the dust or remains of anything burnt and ORE (rock) as a rock that contains minerals like iron, gold or lead leads to the definition of an adverb meaning to or on the shore, beach or land from the direction of the sea

26a    Hot current circling capital of Rwanda (8)
TROPICAL: TOPICAL (current) as of a subject of immediate relevance, interest or importance owing to its relation to current events embracing (circling) the capital letter (capital) from (of) R[wanda], taking to the definition of an adjective meaning fervidly hot


1d    Railway staff in station, closer? (8)
SCREWTOP: CREW (railway staff) as a group or team of people with individual duties in charge of a bus, train or aeroplane is placed inside (in) STOP (station) as a place designated for a bus or train to halt and pick up or set down passengers, leading to the definition of a lid with a threaded rim that is turned on the corresponding thread on the neck of a bottle or container to close it securely

2d    Bet it’s a flat-bottomed boat! (4)
PUNT: Double definition; the second being a noun denoting a flat-bottomed boat with square ends, especially one propelled by means of a long pole pushed against the bottom of a river etc that leads to the first an informal verb meaning to bet or speculate on something

3d    Delicate area, place of worship (6)
TEMPLE: Double definition; the second being a building dedicated to, or regarded as the house or used for the worship of a god or gods in some religions that leads to the first referring to the flat, tender and delicate portion of either side of the head above the cheekbone and between the forehead and the ear

4d    Fish: fifty caught by father (8)
FLOUNDER: L (fifty) as the Roman numeral for 50 is taken in (caught) by FOUNDER (father) as a person who establishes an institution or settlement, arriving at the definition of a small flatfish that typically occurs in shallow coastal water

5d    Sweet gag? (10)
GOBSTOPPER: Double definition; the second being a cryptic definition of something used to gag someone by blocking their gob or mouth that leads to the first a very large hard round sweet for prolonged sucking

6d    Indicate economy originally in good health going the other way (6)
DENOTE: A combo of the original or first letter (originally) of E[CONOMY] and TONED (in good health) as having firm and well-defined muscles returning (going the other way) as a reversal in the down clue guides to the definition of a verb meaning to indicate or be a sign of

8d    From the audience, seat chucked out (6)
THROWN: THRONE (seat) as the ceremonial chair or seat for a sovereign, bishop or similar figure heard as a homophone (from the audience) guides to the definition of a verb in the past participle form meaning propelled something with force through the air by a movement of the arm and hand

13d    Novel aprons I use for cooking (10)
PERSUASION: An anagram (for cooking) of APRONS I USE guides to the definition of the last novel written by Jane Austen that was published on December 20, 1817, along with ‘Northanger Abbey’, six months after her death, although the title page is dated 1818

16d    Decorative work bagging point, finally — mark on score (8)
CROTCHET: CROCHET (decorative work) as a decorative work consisting of intertwined loops, executed in wool or thread with a small hooked needle taking inside (bagging) the final or last letter (finally) of [POIN]T leads to the definition of a note in music having the time value of a quarter of a semibreve or half a minim, represented by a large solid dot with a plain stem

18d    Short jacket on Welsh girl from North Africa (8)
TUNISIAN: TUNI[C] (jacket) as a jacket worn by police officers, soldiers etc shortened with the removal of the last letter (short) is placed on (on) SIAN (Welsh girl) as a Welsh feminine given name, equivalent to the English Jane, arriving at the definition of an adjective meaning relating to or characteristic of Tunisia that is in North Africa

19d    Backbone in apparition? (6)
SPIRIT: Double nounal definition; the first being the quality of courage, energy and determination and the second the non-physical part of a person manifested as an apparition after their death

21d    Threatening words when loser upset over conclusion of referee (2,4)
OR ELSE: The definition of a phrase used as a warning or threat occurs when an anagram (upset) of LOSER is placed upon (over) the concluding or last letter (conclusion) of [REFERE]E in the down clue

22d    Sweetheart wanting gold after diamonds, say (6)
SUITOR: OR (gold) as the tincture gold in heraldry preceded by or coming after (after) SUIT (diamonds) as any of the sets into which a pack of playing cards is divided in conventional packs comprising spades, hearts, diamonds and clubs, arriving at the definition of a man who pursues a relationship with a particular woman, with a view to marriage

24d    Lure, a bit fishy! (4)
BAIT: An anagram (fishy) of A BIT guides to the definition of food placed on a hook or in a net, trap or fishing area to entice fish or other animals as prey

There were several clues that I liked in this puzzle such as 12a, 17a, 20a, 22a, 23a, 25a, 1d, 5d, 8d, 16d, 18d and 24d; the topper being 18d. Thanks again to BD for the encouragement, to Dada for the entertainment and to Gazza for the assistance. Looking forward to being here again. Have a pleasant day.

4 comments on “ST 3191 (full review)
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    1. Thank you so much, Sudipta, for liking my review and your congrats. However, apropos of my write-ups in Big Dave’s Crossword Blog, this was my 100th happiness as I am part of the family of the world’s biggest and best crossword blog. I have always wished that more and more people from all parts of the globe get involved with this extremely entertaining pastime and aspired to write comprehensive and lucid reviews so that even the beginners are in a position to easily and clearly understand my annotations of the clues that form part of the reviews.

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