Sunday Toughie 43 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Sunday Toughie 43

Sunday Toughie No 43 by Robyn

Review by Sloop John Bee

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This puzzle was published on the 20th of November 2022



1a High crime? Glad about Italy acting to clean up (10)

GERMICIDAL: An anagram (high) of CRIME, GLAD and the IVR code for Italy for something used to get a hygienic clean.

6a Go bananas, having flipped (4)
STAB: AN informal synonym of bananas as in mad or BATS is reversed (having flipped) to become an equally informal go or STAB.

9a Cod coming from across the pond by wet ground (5)
BOGUS: Wet ground is a BOG, across the pond is an informal phrase for the country over the Atlantic or US, BOGUS or COD being a slang phrase for a jest or hoax.

10a One’s left this area, with slender horse going around (9)
PATRIMONY: An inheritance that you are left in a will perhaps (usually from ones father but nowadays more widely used for any gift), is A for area, a synonym of slender TRIM, in a small horse PONY – P(A)[TRIM]ONY.

12a Hot cakes left, sweet food (7)
STOLLEN: Hot as in the proceeds of crime STOLEN surrounds (cakes) L for left. Is this the first Christmassy clue of the season? I had my first STOLLEN only yesterday.

13a Something staged that’s long — The Ring (5)
PANTO: To pant is to wish ardently, to long, to yearn for PANT, plus the letter that looks like a ring O. PANTO an abbreviated stage performance or PANTOmime. :O two Christmassy clues in NOVEMBER!

15a Unit of soldiers seizing English horse heartlessly (7)
OERSTED: Other ranks of soldiers OR around (seizing) E for English and a synonym of a horse without its central letter (heartlessly) STeED. Follow the instructions and get out the BRB as I doubt this word for a unit of magnetic field strength named after a Danish physicist is in common use.

16a What instigators of crime do is really by the book (7)
SOLICIT: A synonym of really SO, and by the book or lawful LICIT. SOLICIT to petition or seek after, in this instance illegally.

18a Determined banking personnel finished (7)
THROUGH: Determined or TOUGH contains (banking) the personnel department that hires people, they prefer to be known as Human Resources or H.R. these days, to be T(HR)OUGH or finished.

20a Queen, perhaps, with new place to get liquor (7)
SHEBEEN: This Queen is the female (SHE) head of a BEE(hive) to go with N for new. SHEBEEN – an illicit Irish liquor shop.

21a The best drinks Agnes put away (5)
CHAMP: Drinks or CHAMPAgnes puts away Agnes to be a CHAMP a short form of champion or the best.

23a Yet again, be unsure of defensive work (7)
REDOUBT: A prefix denoting again RE- and a synonym of unsure DOUBT. REDOUBT an inner last defensive fieldwork enclosed on all sides.

25a Watery drink picked up somewhere in Surrey (9)
RUNNYMEDE: A  watery, as in overdiluted RUNNY, and a homophone of a fermented honey-based drink MEAD becomes MEDE, combine to give a riverside location in Surrey of historical note as the place that the MAGNA CARTA was signed. There are quite a few memorials here, not only the signing of the Magna Carta, there is a memorial to John F Kennedy and the RAF has a major memorial there too.

26a Land located between delta and sierra? (5)
INDIA: Delta and Sierra are both in the NATO phonetic code for D and S respectively, between those letters only one is also a land or Country. I becomes INDIA.

27a Stone axes happening to be found towards the west (4)
ONYX: Something happening or occurring ON and the axes on a graph X,Y (their usual alphabetical order is reversed (from the west in an across clue)

28a Attractive, e.g. on posing in image? (10)
PHOTOGENIC: A temperature-based synonym of in HOT and anagrams of E.G. and ON go in an abbreviated image PIC.
Robyn came to the hints and explained this is an all-in-one or &lit (BTW, 28 across is a full & lit. so the whole clue is the definition and, simultaneously, the wordplay.) so I have altered my underlining to match.


1d Scoff huge rolls, getting energy (4)
GIBE: A verb to scoff at is a reversal (rolls) of a synonym of huge BIG becomes GIB, and E for energy.

2d A record-holder when running, I stage three runs (9)
REGISTRAR: The person who holds records of Births, Deaths and Marriages is an anagram of I STAGE and Three cricketty R’s for Runs.

3d Dressed for summer ahead, after rejecting American play hard to get (2,5,6)
IN SHORT SUPPLY: How you may describe wearing trousers suitable for the summer IN SHORTS, a synonym of ahead UP, and PLaY from the clue after A for America has been rejected. Split according to the enumeration and you get IN SHORT SUPPLY or hard to get.

4d Stuck in Denmark’s capital, I need sunshine at first (7)
IMPALED: If you need sunshine you may say I’M PALE, add the capital letter of Denmark for stuck on a fence post. I spent rather too long thinking about Krone, Euro’s and Copenhagen before the penny dropped.

5d When there’s news, policeman is present (7)
ATTENDS: Both ITV and the BBC have or do present their respective evening news bulletins AT TEN O’Clock append a policeman with the rank of Detective Sergeant or DS. ATTENDS – is present at.

7d Hotel cutting rent? One has a point (5)
THORN: Rent or TORN contains (cutting) H for hotel for a pointy THORN.

8d Spurning last of scampi in batter — no good! (10)
BOYCOTTING: The last letter of scampi I, and an abbreviated no good NG, follow an obdurate Yorkshire batsman Sir Geoffrey BOYCOTT. Boycotting To shut out or spurn, from all social and commercial intercourse, from Captain Boycott (1832-97) of County Mayo, who was so treated by his neighbours in Dec. 1880.

11d Robyn’s on seedy food, accepting such consumption isn’t wise (7,6)
IMPULSE BUYING: The seed of leguminous plants as food PULSE, goes in a phrase our setter Robyn, may use when it is his round at the bar I’M BUYING.

14d Where to find better game? Look round estate, say (5,5)
MONTE CARLO: A three-card game to be avoided as it is usually a scam MONTE, a vehicle of which an estate is an example CAR and a synonym of look LO, give us a place renowned for betters who gamble.

17d Furious to get taken in by crook and deceived (7,2)
CHEATED ON: Furious or HEATED goes in a crook or C-ON. CHEATED ON or decieved.

19d Uncovered king given check where there’s a castle (7)
HARLECH: A Welsh place where there is a castle, Our new king loses his covering letters C(HARLE)S and adds the chess notation for to place in check CH.

20d Succeeded with art including most blue (7)
SADDEST: A genealogical abbreviation for succeeded is S. and Gazza (thanks again)explains the rest as;
You have to think of the old English word for you, i.e. thou. ‘Thou art including’ or ‘thou includest’ could be ‘thou ADDEST… SADDEST or most blue.

22d Plague in Rome in the year Antony’s back (5)
ANNOY: How a Roman would refer to the year ANNO and the backmost letter of AntonY, to plague or ANNOY.

24d It’s put on after bathing in continental climate (4)
TALC: We finish with a lurker (in) the last two words of the clue, I got all the way to the last clue before I got a start today!

1 comment on “Sunday Toughie 43
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  1. Thank you John for helping me crossing the finishing line.
    Was really stuck with 23a,19d and 20d.
    Thank also to Robyn for the work out.
    Slowly catching up on my backlog.

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