297 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog

Toughie 297

Toughie No 297 by Firefly

A bit of 6a but no 27a

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BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

This was one of those puzzles where about four-fifths of the answers dragged ink from the biro almost before the nib touched the paper, but there were a handful that really caused some head-scratching.

Post-solve, it became apparent just how much difference there can be between Ximenean and Libertarian clueing. If I wanted to wear my purist’s hat I could say there were all sorts of wordplay indicators here that were questionable, but the comment would be irrelevant. Telegraph solvers are used to having things a certain way, and what’s dodgy in some circles is perfectly acceptable here.

When Dave sends me the template for doing the write-up there are default Difficulty/Enjoyment levels of 3 stars each, and in this case I think that’s about right – it’s very much a straight-down-the-middle sort of puzzle.

My favourite clues are shown in blue – how do they compare with yours?

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