The Numpties – Big Dave's Crossword Blog

EV 1545 (Hints)

Enigmatic Variations 1545 (Hints)

Subject, Verb, Object by Gaston

Hints and tips by The Numpties

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This will be Gaston’s 25th crossword in the Enigmatic Variations series. Solvers will remember his puzzle where we drew a map of the jumps in the Grand National, then his final puzzle after the EV Ladies’ Month where he included geographic features in ‘The South American One’ and his ‘Quest’ that took us back to Pirandello’s Six Characters in Search of an Author.… Continue reading

EV 1544 (Hints)

Enigmatic Variations 1544 (Hints)

The Bounty by The Ace of Hearts

Hints and tips by The Numpties

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On the crossword database we see that The Ace of Hearts has been compiling crosswords since 2015 for The Listener, Inquisitor, Magpie, Crossword and the Enigmatic Variations series. This is his ninth EV crossword.  Continue reading “EV 1544 (Hints)”

EV 1543 (Hints)

Enigmatic Variations 1543 (Hints)

Hard Bargain by Opsimath

Hints and tips by The Numpties

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You will already have encountered Opsimath’s crosswords. He sets in the in the Magpie, Listener, Inquisitor and EV series. This is his third EV and should be welcome to new solvers as he firmly believes in fair and generous clues and doesn’t look for difficulty for its own sake in his crosswords.… Continue reading

EV 1542 (Hints)

Enigmatic Variations 1542 (Hints)

Battle by Stick Insect

Hints and tips by The Numpties

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Stick Insect has been setting EV crosswords for some years. He sets in the Toughie series and also appears annually in the Listener series and has recently set for the Magpie too. With such an experienced setter you can be confident that his clues will be well set and fair.  Continue reading “EV 1542 (Hints)”

EV 1541 (Hints)

Enigmatic Variations 1541 (Hints)

Difference by Ifor

Hints and tips by The Numpties

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Ifor’s crosswords appear in the Magpie, IQ, and Listener series and we can be sure of carefully-crafted clues that will give us a challenge. We have learned in the past how important it is to carefully read his preambles.… Continue reading

EV 1540 (Hints)

Enigmatic Variations 1540 (Hints)

Going Postal by Piccadilly

Hints and tips by The Numpties

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When we check on Dave Hennings’ crossword database, we find that Piccadilly has been setting crosswords for 33 years, most of them for the Telegraph’s EV series (but also for the Listener, Magpie and Weekend series).… Continue reading

EV 1539 (Hints)

Enigmatic Variations 1539(Hints)

Recovery by Eclogue

Hints and tips by The Numpties

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Eclogue set crosswords for all the thematic crossword outlets. This is their thirteenth in the EV series.

Preamble: This puzzle is based on a notable theft and RECOVERY (or two). 16 answers are too short for their allotted number of cells, leaving some cells empty.Continue reading

EV 1538 (Hints)

Enigmatic Variations 1538 (Hints)

Tour by Vismut

Hints and tips by The Numpties

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This is Vismut’s thirteenth EV crossword. Solvers were delighted by her ‘Pretty Lights’ last year and know that her crosswords introduce us to activities and scenes from her home area. We wonder where this TOUR will take us.… Continue reading

EV 1537 (Hints)

Enigmatic Variations 1537 (Hints)

Additive by Kcit

Hints and tips by The Numpties

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Kcit needs no introduction for EV solvers. Dave Hennings’ crossword database tells us that he has been setting them since 1993. This will be his 69th.

Preamble: When the initial grid is complete, the bottom row will be blank, and the central across entry will contain four blank cells (skipped by down entries), adjacent to four components.Continue reading

EV 1536 (Hints)

Enigmatic Variations 1536 (Hints)

Gallimaufry by proXimal

Hints and tips by The Numpties

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Solvers have already met proXimal, (also known as eXternal in his Inquisitor and Listener crosswords) the EV editor, twice in these hints, and he sets some of the Toughies.  In his last EV he reminded us (with fish) that ‘One man’s meat is another man’s poisson’.… Continue reading