Big Dave's Crossword Blog – Page 1136 – Putting the words to lights – crossword clues explained in plain English

ST Cryptic No 2480 – Review

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2480 – Review

A full analysis by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ****

This was the most enjoyable Sunday puzzle in a long time.  It’s hard to explain how one relatively easy puzzle is more satisfying than another – it has a lot to do with the “smile factor” :D that you get when you have solved a particular clue. Continue reading “ST Cryptic No 2480 – Review”

DT Cryptic No 25906 – Review

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25906 – Review

A full analysis by Peter Biddlecombe

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

A mixed bag this one. The grid has a distinctive Telegraph style to it, with the longish answers at 12, 13, 18, 21 placed in the middle of the grid rather than at one side, and quite a few double unches. But it mostly comes up smelling of roses, with fair checking all round and very generous 80% checking for the 10-letter answers. The only niggle is that we get 12 four-letter words.

Continue reading “DT Cryptic No 25906 – Review”

Toughie No 134

Toughie No 134 by Excalibur

Hints and tips by Tilsit

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment **

Greetings from the hospital again!  I have quite enjoyed solving on line with the Telegraph site something I didn’t do prior to admission.  Indeed my collection of 50+ pencils in their very own kidney bowl is a constant source of amusement to the nurses and worry to the Doctors, who feel I may have a touch of OCD.  The fact that when I am admitted to hospital, the first thing I pack every time is my Chamber’s and Bradford’s is another worry for them too.

My initial solving reaction was that I quite enjoyed it, but as I have begun to look deeper, I find quite a few things that both trouble and irritate me.

Continue reading “Toughie No 134”

DT Cryptic No 25910

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25910

Today’s hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment **

It’s St. George’s Day and Shakespeare’s birthday so the puzzle will be full of allusions to celebrations, dragons and bardic quotations, won’t it? Well no, unless you count one measly mention of a flag!

Continue reading “DT Cryptic No 25910”

Toughie No 133

Toughie No 133 by KciT

Hints and tips by Gazza

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

This is a fairly tough Toughie with a few obscure words. I liked some of the clues and disliked others, but the whole thing was certainly an enjoyable challenge.

Continue reading “Toughie No 133”

DT Cryptic No 25909

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25909

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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

A very straightforward puzzle that I found quite hard, but on looking back I can’t see why.  Maybe too much vino yesterday!

Continue reading “DT Cryptic No 25909”

Toughie No 132

Toughie No 132 by Shamus

A Potpourri of a Puzzle

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

This puzzle draws on a wide variety of words – two cities, a Scottish town, a Shetland fire festival, food and drink, a lake, an American President and a type of railway.  All of the proper nouns are well-known apart from the fire festival, but I enjoyed reading about it.

Today is the big day when I am entitled to collect my pension, so it is a bit hectic here at the moment!  The hints and tips may take a litle while to complete, but I will get them done.

Continue reading “Toughie No 132”

DT Cryptic No 25908

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25908

Today’s hints and tips by Gazza

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

This is another fine Tuesday crossword, made up entirely of single-word answers. It contains some excellent and amusing clues and a number of clever attempts at misdirection. For those readers who have not read BigDave’s excellent FAQs, note that the white space between the curly brackets actually contains the answer – double-click on it and all will be revealed!

Continue reading “DT Cryptic No 25908”

DT Cryptic No 25907

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25907

Hints and tips by Tilsit

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

Greetings to everyone from my local hospital.  Unfortunately I was readmitted in the early hours of Saturday morning and am likely to be here for a few days yet.  Rather than overload Big Dave with more work, I thought I’d try a slightly different approach.

I am a bit of a night-owl at the best of times, so I thought I would sign in to the Telegraph website, Clued Up, just after midnight, solve the puzzle on line and make notes, as I have no access to a printer.  Three different browsers and 40 minutes later, I finally managed to get the crossword to load using Safari web browser.

A fairly enjoyable puzzle with a couple of superbly clever clues, but I also have one reservation in that I think you could technically make a case  for either spelling of the word required at 5ac.   As well as the usual smattering of clever cryptic definitions, I really liked 26 across as a nice neat clue, 10 across likewise. On the other hand I couldn’t see anything other than a single definition at 3 down and I’m not sure about 16 across, I have offered my interpretation below.

Thanks to our Monday Maestro for his usual challenge and I hope to see you all later in the week.  Thanks to Big Dave for his assistance with posting this.

Continue reading “DT Cryptic No 25907”

ST Cryptic No 2480 – Hints

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 2480 – Hints

Selected hints by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ****

For me,this was the most enjoyable Sunday puzzle in a long time.  It was also proof that a puzzle doesn’t have to be fiendishly difficult to give satisfaction.  Yes, it has one place name, but that place is both very well-known and uniquely defined by the wordplay.

For the weekend prize crosswords I will select a few of the better clues and provide hints for them.  A full analysis of this puzzle will be available at 12.00 next Thursday, 23rd April.

Some hints to get you started: Continue reading “ST Cryptic No 2480 – Hints”