Toughie 3063 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Toughie 3063

Toughie No 3063 by proXimal
Hints and tips by Gazza

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

An enjoyable puzzle, not one of this setter’s trickiest – many thanks to proXimal.

Please leave a comment telling us how you fared and what you thought of the puzzle.

Across Clues

1a Barrier snaps, broken by large winged creatures (11)
DAMSELFLIES: stick together a barrier and snaps (a noun, not a verb) containing the clothing abbreviation for large.

10a Already arranged April work, requiring no outsiders (5)
PRIOR: strip the outside letters from two words in the clue.

11a Turn on plough, worried after it backfired (9)
TITILLATE: verbs meaning plough and worried follow the reversal of IT.

12a Prompt search after losing case in Venice (9)
INSTIGATE: start with a verb to search or scrutinise and remove the outer letters of Venice.

13a Pained expression after five testify (5)
VOUCH: an utterance denoting pain follows the Roman numeral for five.

14a Bore cut (6)
HACKED: double definition, the first an informal verb meaning bore or coped with.

16a Drew back bolted clamps a short distance (8)
FLINCHED: a verb meaning bolted or legged it contains a short imperial distance.

18a Artist with picture in both hands (8)
LANDSEER: the letters used for both hands contain a conjunction meaning with and a verb to picture or visualise.

20a Column‘s put favourable slant on the French revolutionary (6)
SPINAL: a favourable slant (especially applied by politicians) is followed by the reversal of ‘the’ in France.

23a Move gingerly around old snare (5)
NOOSE: a verb to move gingerly or proceed one step at a time contains the abbreviation for old.

24a Hiding from abuse of human rights I’m not sure should be overlooked (9)
THRASHING: remove an expression of doubt or hesitation from HUMAN RIGHTS and make an anagram (abuse) of what’s left.

26a Headline about Prime Minister you’re primarily finding unmoving (9)
SEDENTARY: a verb to headline or top the bill contains a UK Prime Minister from the 1950s. Finish with the primary letter of you’re.

27a Generous anagram pleasantly entertains (5)
AMPLE: hidden.

28a Decent clean around small desk (11)
PRESENTABLE: a verb to clean (with a beak perhaps) contains the clothing abbreviation for small. Finish with a rudimentary desk.

Down Clues

2d I compile using such a sheet to reflect (5)
ALIAS: start with A then reverse what sheet is a poetic word for.

3d Controlled address to knight heard before offensive (7)
SERVILE: what sounds like how you might address a knight is followed by an adjective meaning offensive or foul.

4d Mortal left alien chamber diminished (6)
LETHAL: assemble the abbreviation for left, our usual Spielberg alien and a room without its last letter.

5d Ground really staying dry in recent times (8)
LATTERLY: an anagram (ground) of REALLY containing the abbreviation for dry or on the wagon.

6d Rouse some men evil nemesis upset (7)
ENLIVEN: hidden in reverse.

7d Power correct cables aboard ship to produce energy (13)
SPRIGHTLINESS: the physics abbreviation for power, an adjective meaning correct and a synonym for cables or wires all go inside our usual abbreviation for ship.

8d Monkey for all to see in uppermost part on projection (8)
CAPUCHIN: the letter used to identify a film that all may see goes between a word for the uppermost part of something and a facial projection.

9d He lit some explosive with good techniques (13)
METHODOLOGIES: an anagram (explosive) of HE LIT SOME and GOOD.

15d Verbal agreement that’s no longer up in the air (8)
CONCORDE: a homophone of a word meaning agreement or harmony.

17d Doctor runs late — they’re indifferent (8)
NEUTRALS: an anagram (doctor) of RUNS LATE.

19d We must abandon one of our people becoming more cruel (7)
STERNER: start with someone living in our part of the world and remove its WE.

21d Sauce and juice over most of Malaysian dish (7)
PASSATA: reverse a word meaning juice and add a spicy Malaysian dish without its last letter.

22d Costumier’s opening fabric drawer (6)
CRAYON: the opening letter of costumier and an artificial fabric.

25d Force is mile at sea outside Portugal (5)
IMPEL: an anagram (at sea) of MILE containing the IVR code for Portugal.

Top of the pile for me were 1a, 15d and 22d. Which one(s) gained your approbation?

8 comments on “Toughie 3063
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  1. Spot-on level for me and I very much enjoyed the solve. The parsing of 2d held out for a while due to my placing the stress in the wrong place when reading the clue but everything else slotted in very neatly.
    Podium places went to 1&11a plus 2,15&22d.

    Many thanks to proXimal and to Gazza for the review and cartoons – still chuckling over the gender neutral toilet!

  2. This was a very pleasant Toughie for a Thursday afternoon, not too difficult but very nicely clued with some inventive and witty misdirection. 11a was excellent, and is joined on my podium by 22d and 28a, my final entry.

    My thanks to proXimal and Gazza. I join Jane in her chuckling over the toilet cartoon.

  3. Really enjoyable puzzle, thank you Proximal.

    Three-quarters went in reasonably swiftly, and – correctly – I was sure it was not going to last. Indeed I slowed down with some of the clues in the W, just not “seeing” 19d for ages, or being able to parse the answers I wanted to put in for 2d, 14a & 15d. But got there in the end, with a distinct feeling of satisfaction for a good grid solved.

    Thanks also to Gazza for the blog & the cartoons!

  4. What a super puzzle from the consistently good X-man. Plenty tough enough for me but may have been tired due to doing most of it after painting the garden fence.
    Primary amongst the clues gaining my approbation were 11&16a plus 7d.
    Many thanks to ProXimal and Gazza.

  5. I completed the east before I got any in the west, but they slowly revealed themselves after a lot of head scratching. Most enjoyable with lots to like. Favourite was 2d as it made me smile when the penny finally dropped. Thanks to ProXimal and Gazza.

  6. Bet we weren’t the only ones to question the use of ‘sheet’ in 2d as they are usually ‘ropes’ but guess that as Gazza says in his hint, it can be a poetic use of the term.
    We found this one quite challenging so not a quick solve for us. Lots of fun though.
    Thanks proXimal and Gazza.

  7. A day late to this. Solved the east this morning on the phone then stalled in the west. 2 letter checker reveals this evening enabled a stagger over the line so clearly not as easy for me as others. Though can’t recall if I’ve ever had occasion to spell it my inclination for 7d would instinctively have been spriteliness whichI now see is an archaic variant. Enjoyed his much easier Friday back-pager rather more but much to enjoy here.
    Thanks to proXimal & Gazza

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