Sunday Toughie 95 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Sunday Toughie 95 (Hints)

Sunday Toughie No 95

by Robyn


Hints and Tips by Sloop John Bee


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Robyn has brought us a fine toughie today with a slightly unbalanced 16a and 13d clues and I have hinted halfish

I liked 14d as he fits into one of my four c’s (crosswords, coffee, cheese and cycling) I was fooled by his claims of innocence myself but still admire his chutzpah

I will take Mama Bee out for a scone and coffee but will return later if you need any extra nudges

Here we go…

As it is a Prize puzzle I can only hint at a few and hope that will give you the checkers and inspiration to go further. I’ll be back just after the closing date with the full blog. Don’t forget to follow BD’s instructions in RED at the bottom of the hints!

I hope I don’t have to redact any comments but I am new at this and don’t want to rock the boat. If in doubt, I’ll rub it out! I think that sentence is a bit redundant. You have all been so helpful in sorting out prior parsing failures, and I am sure I will need similar help again.

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. Don’t forget the Mine of useful information that Big Dave and his son Richard so meticulously prepared for us.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions. Some hints follow: Remember the site rules and play nicely.



1a American state? I’m not sure it’s the solution (6)
Start with one of the usual American abbreviations, then an abbreviation of a state in a different country and finish with a hesitant interjection and you have the solution

9a People like Diana having husband with a Parisian hairdo (10)
People like Diana the Goddess rather than Diana the Princess

12a Improve in French and in German I must be about right (6)
A French in and a German I about an abbreviation

15a Sinner has new lapse? It’s what’s expected, at the end of the day (8)
The original sinner and a new abbreviation, go before a lapse, when the serpent tempted her into eating the fruit from the tree of knowledge of good and evil

18a Maybe he and I whizz round, hosted by sisters (8)
A definition by example – A whizz, so good at something he could earn a living, and the sisters in a religious order around the round letter

21a Teller of tales is trouble for the head in school (6)
An abbreviation for school around the follicular trouble that a nurse (usually called Nora in my day) sought

Parents sign petition to bring back the nit nurse

26a Lead university starts calling for all-round education (10)
Start with an abbreviation then a chemical symbol, then the noise that signifies you are calling someone

28a After polite refusal, Tranmere’s wingers write down the score (6)
An informal refusal and the winging letters of the football club write down a musical score perhaps



2d Country bordered by Argentina/Uruguay (5)
A slightly obscure country lurks within (bordered by) the remainder of the clue

3d Person making Sally hot, weary-looking and taciturn (9)
Sally as a humourous remark or retort, an abbreviation and a synonym of weary-looking

6d Did that man look embarrassed, kitted out with rings? (8)
Split (3,2,3) it could be the question posed in the first five words of the clue – (8) would be kitted out with rings that help secure fastenings
M24 x Under 140mm Hex Bolt Nut Washers HT 8.8 Zinc DIN931 – Fixaball Ltd. Fixings and Fasteners UK

8d Addition to sentence of criminal bagging loot, oddly, behind house (9)
A house connected to one other, followed by one of our usual criminals bags the odd letters of loot to indicate that the sentence continues ;

14d Violently force disgraced cyclist to cycle around (9)
A disgraced cyclist whose seven victories at the Tour de France have been struck from the records for doping “cycles” three letters of his surname


24d Hemingway perhaps ignoring European artist (5)
Hemingway ignores his second E for European

      Max Ernst Paintings+, Bio, Ideas | TheArtStory     

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The 20d Band with a fine song

That’s All Folks…

13 comments on “Sunday Toughie 95 (Hints)

  1. Another brilliant puzzle by the peerless Robyn, the master of misdirection. Even by his standards I thought this was top-notch. One can only marvel at his wordplay construction.
    Where to even start on a podium? I’ll choose 18&21a plus 8&14d but that seems like an injustice to the rest.
    Many thanks to our esteemed setter and SJB.

  2. Another gem of a Sunday Toughie from one of my favourite setters. All very accessible with some nice surfaces; 5d is great.
    Learnt a new country at 2d, which apparently suffers with 92% obesity. No mixed grill then!

    Thanks Robyn & SJB

  3. Good Sunday Toughie although I wasn’t very keen on 15a (never seen it used) or 6d which looked like something of an ‘any port in a storm’!
    Top three for me were 10&21a plus 3d.

    Thanks to Robyn for the challenge and to SJB for the hints.

  4. Cracking Sunday entertainment again.

    Favourites out of many excellent clues – 10a, 28a, 6d and 14d.

    Glad that I went to a Grammar school or I might not have got a couple of answers 😉

    Thanks to Robyn and SJB for a couple of parsings.

  5. Thank you, Robyn, for another very nicely constructed crossword.
    My pick of the bunch today were 18a, 21a and 26a, with 17d placed as runner-up.
    Thanks, as always, to SJB.

  6. Lots of different choices for the podium is a sign that Robyn has given us a cracker today, It seems some of my pics didn’t get through so I have changed them.
    My 5d is not a style choice but a sign of laziness

  7. Mama Bee is warming her toes by the fire and watching Now Voyager so I will go and have a go at the Dada

  8. Another master class in clueing from Robyn. Some brilliant misdirections such as whizz round, making it my clue of the day.
    Thanks Robyn for the challenge and SJB for the review

  9. Many thanks, all, and especially to SJB for the hints. I’m glad that the puzzle was generally enjoyed. Have a great week!

  10. Had a look at this late last night & too tired to do it justice. Completed tonight 27hrs after commencement the old puzzles site tells me. Super puzzle. As is usual for me with Robyn the pennies dropped very slowly & parsing the answers took longer. 15a&17d my joint favs (no way Kath will see this) from loads of ticks, which more than excused the awful word at 23a.
    Thanks to Robyn & to John – will now read the review

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