ST 3198 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 3198 (Hints)

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 3198 (Hints)

Hints and tips by Senf

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

A very good Sunday morning from Winnipeg where, six years ago to the very day, and 314 Sunday blogs ago, I started my Sunday blogging ‘career’ and I have never looked back.

Assisted by a Speyside Glenlivet – none of that Western Isles ‘Jeyes fluid’ for me!

For me, and I stress for me, Dada still quite friendly, with a minor anagram fest of seven (two partials), two lurkers, and two homophones (one partial), all in an asymmetric 29 clues; with 15 hints ‘sprinkled’ throughout the grid you should be able to get the checkers to enable the solving of the unhinted clues.

Candidates for favourite – 5a, 25a, 5d, 17d, and the Pun.

As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, a number of the more difficult clues have been selected and hints provided for them.

Don’t forget to follow BD’s instructions in RED at the bottom of the 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:


1a A technological subject grasped by relative, just the same (2,2,2)
A from the clue, and a two letter abbreviated form of a technological subject contained (grasped) by the abbreviated form of a (female) relative.

5a Brief affair involving Peg recalled (8)
A synonym of affair (as in relationship) containing (involving) a type of peg (as illustrated) reversed (recalled).

11a Norse god in request for feast (8)
A four letter Norse god inserted into (in) a synonym of request.

12a Get African country heard? (6)
A homophone (heard) of an African country.

21a Just behind front of fire alarm (6)
A synonym of just (as in fair) placed after (behind) the first letter (front) of Fire.

23a Extraordinary state in Texas originally most stylish (8)
An anagram (extraordinary) of STATE IN and the first letter (originally) of Texas.

26a Fruit in an ornate tray, nourishing (10)
A type of fruit inserted into (in) AN from the clue, and an anagram (ornate, move one letter in a four letter word) of TRAY.

28a One of seven characters dropping off? (6)
One of a group of seven characters in a fairy tale.


2d Hunters finally catch sluggish creature (5)
The last letter (finally) of hunterS and a synonym of catch.

3d Score also announced for every player on football field? (6-3)
The number often referred to as a score and a homophone (announced) of a synonym of also.

5d Progressive striker, fine leader (7-8)
Another term for a striker (in the round ball game) and, written as (4,4), a synonym of fine and a type of leader (of a country).

8d Cool when all transmitters removed? (9)
A single word adjective that describes the situation when all (neural) transmitters have been removed.

14d I approach home of hawk, say, with serious intent (2,7)
I from the clue, a verbal synonym of approach, and a home of a hawk for example (say).

16d Street I’ve tidied up, cleaner (9)
An anagram (tidied up) of STREET I’VE.

24d Temper raging initially in bar (5)
The first letter (initially) of Raging inserted into (in) a verbal synonym of bar.

Quick Crossword Pun:


Could new readers please read the Welcome post and the FAQ before posting comments or asking questions about the site.

As this is a Prize crossword, please don’t put any ANSWERS, whether WHOLE, PARTIAL or INCORRECT, or any ALTERNATIVE CLUES OR HINTS in your comment.

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Billy Joel performing This Night at (the old) Wembley Stadium in 1984. The Beethoven aficionados among you may notice that he is ‘borrowing’ from the second movement of one of his favourite composer’s Pathétique Sonata for the chorus:

91 comments on “ST 3198 (Hints)
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  1. Gentle for me, too, Senf – and congratulations and thanks to you on your BigDave anniversary for all your blogs and helpful explanations.

    Nothing to alarm the equines here, with delightful constructions and plenty of wit. Podium places to 12a, 2d, & 14d.

    1.5* / 3.5*

    Many thanks to Dada and to Senf

  2. I agree that this was Dada at his most gentle but he’s never less than entertaining. Thanks to him and Senf (and congratulations on the anniversary – the long-service medal is on its way!).
    Top clues for me were 2d (I loved the ‘sluggish’), 3d and 5d.

  3. 1*/4*. Possibly the lightest Sunday PP I can recall but great fun nevertheless.

    Many thanks to Dada and to Senf. Six years?! Amazing. Very well done and thank you.

  4. Nice and pleasant Dada for me today, with 5d leading the pack of winners followed by 12a and 5a. However, 12a is not at all a homophone for me. Congratulations to Senf on his six years of Sunday blogs. Great show! And thanks too to Dada. **/***

    Very pleasant Sunday Toughie too today.

  5. A rather olayful puzzle with lots of well camouflaged anagrams, which I greatly enjoyed. Favourites included 12a, 5d11a and 9a. Thanks to Dada for an entertaining SPP. Thanks to Senf for the hints and a Happy Hinting Anniversary , withappreciation for your great explanations and willingness to step into the breach if needed.

  6. A gentle Dada today with a few causing some head scratching. Just the right balance to make it thoroughly enjoyable. I pondered 27a for ages trying to work out the correct vowel and I’m still not sure. I’ll send the crossword in though because the pen, after all, is mythical! :grin:

    1a was the first in and that is always a good sign. It raised smile as well. Plenty of ticks all over my paper but my COTD is 5d because of the fine leader.

    My thanks to Dada for the fun. Huge thanks to Senf for the hints and his anniversary. Six years! I don’t know how you do it, Senf but it is greatly appreciated. In fact, I don’t know how any of the team of excellent bloggers do it and all in their spare time as well. We solvers are fortunate indeed. :good:

    1. I went for I !
      And it is not mythical, I have just filled the grid using one of mine. ( cannot resist rubbing it in that I have won more than once though admittedly it has been over the course of some 40 years. It was a pack of Bridge cards first time.

      1. I firmly believe it to be mythical, DG. After all, has anyone seen a picture of a solver holding one? There are pictures of “DT Pens” but I bet they’re planted by nefarious types. :grin: :smile:

        1. I am using the one I got for the newsletter comp but I believe the one for prize puzzles is better. Here’s hoping…

              1. I have a DT biro (ballpoint) which came with a notebook for a Saturday prize puzzle. Some years ago the prize pen was a Mont Blanc but times became hard…

              1. I’ve been lucky enough to win 5 of the fountain pens over the last few years but they sadly aren’t Montblancs. My second mug of tea is still untouched and it’s all over already. Thanks to the setter and senf for a nice end to the weekend. Don’t often comment here as I don’t get round to the crossword until a day or two after the event so it is nice to do it actually on the day for once.

                1. 5! You must be a warlock, Gingerpickles or how else could you conjure a mythical beast? 🧙🏼‍♂️🤣

                  Please comment more – it matters not when you solve the guzzle.

            1. Ok all – you are showing hands now but how do I know they are yours? :scratch: :grin:

              They just reinforce my conspiracy theory that the pen is a myth. I will not be convinced otherwise until I have one in my own hand! :smile:

              Thanks all – good fun. :good:

  7. It has all been said: light, entertaining and enjoyable, with 5d my favourite.

    Thanks to Dada. A big thank you to Senf for all his hard work over the past six years. The effort you and your fellow bloggers put in is never taken for granted.

  8. Our setter being very gentle with us again, long may it continue!
    Favourites out of a strong field were 5a plus 5&14d.

    Thanks to Dada and to Senf on his anniversary – many thanks for all your hard work and dedication to the blog which is greatly appreciated.

  9. A nice Dada that took a little bit of starting (thx for the anagrams) but everything came together nicely. We have been spoilt with two excellent puzzles this weekend.
    Thx to all

  10. Held up from completion by 8d.
    Proverbial eventually dropped putting me into ** time.
    14d brought a smile as did 24d.
    Many thanks to the setter and Senf.

  11. A pleasant fun run for a lovely sunny morning which for me makes a change with Dada. North completed ahead of a single solution in the South. Not sure about 16d cleaner. No outstanding Fav just lots of nicely tricky clues. Thank you Dada and Senf.

    1. I’m with you on 16a, despite conceding it could be nothing else. I also struggle with ‘nourishing’ at 26a, years of granimal doctoring enforcing a more anatomical meaning. Let that take nothing away from a bright gem from Dada.

      1. Yes, Granimal+Doctor, I too was doubtful about 26a but several dictionaries including Merriam Webster (USA!) give it as pertaining to nourishment.

    2. Nor me when it comes to the 16d cleaner – nearest I can get is that it keeps your clothes cleaner if you’ve spilled food onto your lap.

  12. I tend to agree with 16d – cleaner? My grandmother would tell me tartly not to us the newfangled French word introduced by the Normans but to use the good old six letter Anglo Saxon word. Anyway, clocking in early today as I am sitting in the car being driven by DD2 to visit DD1 whom I have not see since the disastrous affair of the broken gearbox mid journey. DD stand for dirty daughter, don’t ask. Great puzzle, I put a daisy by 11but then there were several more scattered about. Huge thanks to Senf the mustard man for his hinting, a puzzle is there for us every day but it is the dedication of you and your colleagues who painstakingly explain the intricacies of the clues and boost our expertise. All Hail Hinters All. And many thanks to Dada also.

  13. A pleasant solve during this mornings coffee break between the Sunday chores.


    Fav 8d LOI 11a

    Thanks to Dada & congratulations to Senf on your blogging milestone. Slàinte!

  14. Feeling very smug having finished 2 this weekend which is a triumph in my book, and credit to you training me. I thought this was great fun especially for a novice like me. I had the same dilemma with 27a.
    I don’t have a BRB which seems to be the thing to have, so I am resorting to my FUH – Fairly Useful Husband as a substitute with google as a back up.

    Thanks to the setter and congratulations to Senf on your achievement!

  15. Congratulations Senf! Thank you for your 27A service for all these years. As others have said, a gentle but fun-to-solve offering today, so thanks also to Dada. My picks are 11A, 2D and 8D.

    Recovering today from yesterday’s arctic blast that came down from up your way. I do so long for some sign of Spring!

  16. I stand with Daisy! Only the most common people would refer to 16d as a 16d. We, more refined BigDavers, would always call it a ‘family after forty winks’. I do hate to cause distress but anyone who refers to 16d as a 16d could never be a guest in this house. One must have standards. 16d people would have to come to the tradesmen’s entrance.

    It seems we are going for a lovely walk. The destination has not yet been revealed. However, I shall stride forward with gusto*

    *meander slowly

    Thanks to Dada and The Man From Manitoba (thanks for six years of valiant hinting).

  17. Great Sunday puzzle.
    (Although I had 20D totally wrong for over an hour.)
    Great to be back into crosswords after a 3 year hiatus.😎

    1. Welcome back! Your comment went into moderation because you used what I presume is your full name instead of the alias (based on your e-mail) that you used when you last commented some while ago. Both should work in the future.

          1. I also had 20d wrong for ages – I had it as a lurker which made perfect sense at the time – did you do the same?

            1. That’s a great spot, Manders, which I didn’t see. Although your answer makes perfect sense, the words “those days” would be surface padding as they are not needed for the wordplay. I’m pretty sure that Dada would not have contemplated that.

  18. As straightforward as they come but lots to like. Hard to pick a favourite but we’ll go with 5a. Thanks to Dada and Senf and add our congratulations to him as well.

  19. Firstly, congratulations to Senf in the blogging milestone, and thank you for all the assistance and insights.
    Like others, I found this to be at the gentler end of the spectrum, but very enjoyable.
    Thanks to Dada for the challenge

  20. Thanks to Dada for providing one of his gentler efforts. Lots to enjoy with only LOI 8d giving some long pause for thought.
    Biggest thanks of the day of course go to you Senf for your magnificent selfless performance over all these years. I’m sure of us here are grateful to you for sharing your solving skills and helping us raise our game!

  21. Many thanks to Senf for 6yrs of 27a service to the blog & particularly for the extra duties last year. Very much appreciated. Thought the puzzle a bit so so by Dada’s standards but as always very enjoyable. No real favourites but quite liked 5a
    Thanks to D&S

  22. This was possibly the easiest Dada puzzle that Senf has had to solve in his six year ownership of the Sunday blogging chair.

    The first one was probably the Toughest.

    Thanks to Dada & Senf.

  23. Not quite so swift as the delightful Cephas yesterday but solved without too many hitches and unaided. 8d was LOI. It worked the opposite way for me today. I got 5d and the LHS first leaving the top right till last. For 16d I was looking for a lady who does or some domestic cleaning product or tool so was surprised when I got the answer. Favourites 5 6 11 and 28a. Thanks Senf for six years’ hard Labour and Dada.

  24. Happy sixth anniversary Senf, but be careful what you say anout Western Isles Malts – one here is a huge Ard Beg fan and a ‘Committee Member’ to boot, lol ;-) :-) A nice gentle Sunday puzzle, which I solved in what was for me an odd way. Beginning with the long 5d I continued with 5a, then 27a and went through the puzzle solving one clue and it’s opposite, until I was left with 9a and 26a, if you get my pattern. No favourites as such, but 11a, 5d and 20d appealed. All good fun – thanks to Dada and Senf – here’s to your next six years and thank you for the past half dozen.

  25. I thought this was a light but great fun puzzle full of this setter’s Sunday wit.
    My winners are 11a plus 2,7&14d with perhaps 3d just edging it as favourite
    Many thanks to Dada and thanks and congratulations to Senf.

  26. A relatively friendly offer from Dada today I thought. COTD for me was 8d – I like a pure cryptic clue. Only one thing confuses me though. I see regular references on this blog to the ‘Quickie Pun’ which I assume is a combination of answers within the grid that with a bit of imagination make up a well known phrase. Senf (congrats on your 6 years – I believe that is slightly disappointingly an iron anniversary in wedding terms) hints at one in this puzzle but I have looked and looked and can see nothing. Can someone enlighten me?

    1. Hi PB, The pun isn’t in the cryptic puzzle, it’s in the Quickie that’s printed underneath in the newspaper version. I have no idea it it can be found online though, as I have never looked,

      1. Like you, I have never looked online but I am sure the Quickie is included there as those reviewers who work with the online version complain that the words forming the pun are not italicised like they are in the newspaper. This can occasionally make decrypting the pun problematic for them.

        As I’m sure you are only too well aware, in the paper version only the words for the top line pun are italicised and never the bottom line when one has been included, which seems a bit random to me.

        1. The Quickie is available on line and the clues contributing to the (top line) pun are italicised in the ‘new’ web site version.

          Last night, working from the ‘old’ web site, the design of the Quickie grid made the pun clues obvious so I did not need to confirm on the ‘new’ web site.

          1. Thanks all – so I take from the above that the Pun is nothing to do with the main cryptic crossword and as I don’t tackle the Quickie I don’t need to worry about any italics!

    2. PB, every day the setter of the cryptic crossword also sets a quick crossword (or Quickie) the first few words (usually two, occasionally more) of which form a pun. Campbell, our regular Monday setter has taken this one step further and always includes a second pun at the bottom of his Quickie. Sometimes he even adds a third pun in the middle of the puzzle for good measure!

      1. . . . and if it’s more than two words making up to the pun then however there are in italics – I don’t seem to have put this very well! Sorry!

  27. Thanks for Six wonderful years Senf, this was an easier Dada than many but still enjoyable.
    Enjoy the Glenlivet you have earned it, I like all malts be they highland, lowland, Islay or elsewhere. My first love was the smokier seaweedy end of the flavour spectrum even if they do have a hint of Jeyes about them.

      1. Like all things beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Each to their own and I would never accuse anyone of naïvety just for disagreeing with me. In the immortal words of Dave Allen as he raised his own glass. May your God go with you

  28. For me, a late start due to Six Nation viewing … but a nice Dada puzzle today with no obscurities for me.

    2*/4 for me

    Favourites include 1a, 5a, 28a, 2d, 5d & 4d with winner 5d

    Thanks to Dada for the fun and Senf for the hints

  29. Great puzzle but reading the comments I will be missing out on that mythical pen too this Sunday due to an incorrect vowel in 27a. Pure carelessness and obvious when I review but I blame half an eye on the sports… An 11a of gentle anagrams for me set the tone for a speedy solve. Favourite today was 5d.

    Thanks to Dada and Senf, congrats too for the milestone

  30. Can’t remember the last time I enjoyed a Dada this much. Started well, and just stuck on a few answers. Went off and did exercise dvd, which must have stirred up the grey cells, and just needed help with two answers to finish. So very happy here. I did solve 16d on my own, but felt it was a bung in as I have never thought of it as a cleaner. If only all Dada puzzles were like this 😊. Congratulations to Senf on the 6 year anniversary, well done!

      1. I always shudder when I see women blotting their lips (and lipstick) on xxxxx xxxxxxxxxx in nice restaurants. Paper ones, not a problem. But lipstick on linen, oh dear.

  31. Well done, Senf, has it really been that long? You’re a sweetheart to do that for us for so long.
    Well, the guzzle … I was going great guns when I reached a full stop. I had one unsolved and four very questionable answers. I’ve read your hints and I’ve got a couple of wrong ‘uns, no wonder I had so much difficulty at the home stretch. I got 5a right, oh! That peg! Thanks for the unravelling. Fave was 14d, good for a giggle, I liked 4d as well.
    Thank you Dada, I’ll master your puzzles in time, and thanks to Senf for his help.

  32. If anyone is looking for something to do before whisky o’clock the Sunday Toughie today is very approachable.

  33. Thankyou Senf for all your hard work. The puzzle today was helped by your input, especially 16d. Thankyou Dada as well. Red wine is my preferred tipple!

  34. Thanks to Dada for an enjoyable solve (yes, I solved it without help, 2 days in a row now, who’d have thought it!).

    And a very happy bloggerversary Senf, and many thanks for all your wonderful hinting.

  35. I make no apology for posting this. Do you remember The Sex Pistols and Johnny Rotten? He wanted to represent Ireland in the Eurovision Song Contest with this song. It’s about his wife, whom he has been married to for fifty years. He is devoted to her even though she has Alzheimer’s and, if you Google interviews with him about the song, he openly talks about changing her nappies and how he is worried that if he wins the competition it will take him away from her despite her having home help.

    He took months to write the song because he wanted to promote the pain and love that Alzheimer’s entails.

    It is a beautiful song and far removed from “Pretty Vacant”. Please listen to the words and tell me if you are not moved.

  36. Did not have time to complete the crossword yesterday…..Sunday chores, zooming the son, being mercilessly thrashed at online bridge again (we must be masochists…..or very slow learners) so finished it this morning.
    A great crossword which I almost completed…..inevitably the homophone did for me and needed the hint for the peg.
    Thanks to Senf for today and for all of his efforts over the last six year..and also for being a man of taste!
    Thanks to Dada too.

    1. Me, too re yesterday (church, the monthly ‘real food’ market, family reading time, the 10-year-old spending a voucher at our local friendly game store, and then playing the chosen board game — which involved cultivating bamboo to feed a panda) and also re Senf.

      But I like Dada puzzles, so chose to do this one a day late instead of Monday’s, and am glad I did. I liked 3d (“football field”), 20d (“capital invested in arsenic”). My favourite was 19a (“wine”) because it took me so long to see it and it made me laugh at my own ineptness when I finally did!

      Cheers to anybody else still reading this. Other stragglers, do comment as well!

  37. Got nothing on first pass through but then it all fell into place!

    Glenlivet is one of my favorites too but also partial to Laphroaigh and Talisker.

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