Sunday Toughie No 96
Hints and Tips by Sloop John Bee
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proXimal not as devious as I usually find today, I managed to turn the light out before 1 am and the slightly less obvious parsings seemed to come in my dreams. If I have missed any parsings or clues that you need pipe up early, as I am taking Mama Bee out for her 87th birthday. We are going to try the new York Refectory that has just opened in the old Minster Choir School, I will return later this evening
We have a nice even 14a and 14d clues today and I have hinted half, the highlight for me was the great 9a but plenty of others to admire
Here we go, Folks…
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 return with the full review blog just after the closing date. 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 Play area foundation entirely covered by black stone (8,7)
A synonym of foundation, an abbreviation of the colour covers a synonym of entirely and finishes with a precious stone
9a Swaying chime on The Beatles’ Now and Then (9)
A gem of a clue, and an obvious musical interlude, but Now and Then is an instruction to take alternate letters followed by (on) a chime
13a No longer anxious priest: first woman accepted, in a way (8)
A priest who crops up often in crosswords and the first woman are inserted in an abbreviated way
18a Vessel of gold church obscured with cross (8)
To cross a bridge perhaps, contains gold and the Church of England
23a Fly high having installed new navigation system (5)
A navigation system used underwater rather than on high, from to fly high and n for new
26a Pro solver’s agreed on terms of personal methodology being top secret (3,4,4,4)
Not sure I have parsed all of this but I have enough to hint. A synonym of pro and how proXimal may address solvers, a word from the clue a term of agreement and something personal should suggest a certain top-secret term familiar to James Bond (or AgentB)
1d Comparatively tough person delighting in violence (7)
An unpleasant mental image of Klaus Barbie the Gestapo officer in Lyon, came to mind as he was known for delighting in violence. Aggressively masculine in appearance or manner adds a suffix for comparatively
3d Grouse positioned around wood to mass over large fruit (9,6)
Synonyms of grouse, positioned and a type of hardwood, add a crickety over and an abbreviation of mass, to from the clue and this large fruit added to burgers should be found
5d Brought to light, wooden boat (6)
A double definition, split (3,3) as the first, (6) for the second
8d Composed doctor? Not totally, the following day (7)
Composed of a doctor, most of (not totally) a following and an abbreviation of day
15d Criminal behaviour having one in gang shot (8)
A gang and a shot or go contain the letter that looks like one
20d Issue tenders working here? (7)
The place where those tending your young issue work
21d City home that’s stretched dough (6)
The postcode for the City of London precedes an animal home to be an elongated pastry product
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That’s All Folks!