Big Dave's Crossword Blog – Putting the words to lights – crossword clues explained in plain English

 Welcome

Welcome to Big Dave’s Crossword Blog

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You have reached the world’s biggest and best crossword blog.  If you are looking for help with the Daily and Sunday Telegraph cryptic crosswords, a total of 11 puzzles a week, then you have come to the right place.

If this is your first time, or for more information about this site, please click on Continue reading “Welcome”

Toughie 2350

Toughie No 2350 by Elgar

Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty ****Enjoyment *****

Another amazing puzzle from Elgar. I managed to spot the theme quickly in 8a/11a and that helped enormously with the rest of the solve. It was harder to find the connection to 139 (this being Elgar’s 139th Telegraph Toughie) – I was briefly distracted by Genesis 13:9, but it turns out the link is elsewhere, as explained in Elgar’s words at the end of this blog.… Continue reading

DT 29233

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29233

Hints and tips by Deep Threat

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Good morning from South Staffs on a Friday 13th which started dark and damp, but is now brighter and blustery.

I solved today’s Giovanni last night while listening to the election coverage, but was not held up by the distraction, with nothing particular to hold me up, though the cryptic definition at 16a was my last one in,

In the hints below, the definitions are underlined.… Continue reading

DT 29228

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29228

A full review by gnomethang

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This puzzle was published on 7th December 2019

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

Morning All! Pretty standard fair for a Saturday with some nice surface readings and some good cryptic definitions.

Continue reading “DT 29228”

Toughie 2349

Toughie No 2349 by Beam

Hints and tips by Bufo

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***/****Enjoyment ***/****

I struggled with this somewhat but I think that was more down to me than to the puzzle. Still it was enjoyable though I really had to think hard to unravel some of the wordplay. Continue reading “Toughie 2349”

DT 29232

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29232

Hints and tips by pommers

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

Hola from the Vega Baja.  Well, things have moved on a bit here.  We now have new doors on the bedrooms and bathroom and a fully functional kitchen.  The master bedroom is finished so all I have to do now is redecorate the rest of the house.  Deep joy!

Anyway, on to the crossword which I’m pretty sure is a proXimal production as it’s a pangram bar an X.  I found it at the easier end of his range and I got 10 of the acrosses on first pass. A couple held me up a bit (25a for example) so we slipped into ** time.  I’ll be interested to see what you all thought of it.
Continue reading “DT 29232”

ST 3032

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 3032

A full review by gnomethang

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This puzzle was published on 1st December 2019

BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment ***

Morning All! A failry quick solve today but the review found some nice constructions that I missed when I threw the words in from checing letters and obvious definitions. Personally I think that I would have added an extra enjoyment star if the Defs had been a bit more oblique.

Continue reading “ST 3032”

Toughie 2348

Toughie No 2348 by Hudson

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty **/***Enjoyment ***

There’s nothing too demanding here with the main hold-ups being down to a few bits of GK (in 1a and 5d in my case). There are some innovative insert/contain indicators in use in the puzzle.… Continue reading

DT 29231

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29231

Hints and tips by 2Kiwis

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Kia ora from Aotearoa.

It has been quite a week here in New Zealand. The weather pattern that we mentioned in last week’s blog caused significant infrastructure damage in the South Island with many slips and areas of flooding. Huge disruption for many people, especially tourists, with the only road down the West Coast not expected to re-open before Christmas.… Continue reading

Toughie 2347

Toughie No 2347 by Serpent

Hints and tips by crypticsue

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BD Rating – Difficulty ****Enjoyment ****

BD has something nice to attend today and his stand-in blogger has a family emergency, so I’m the stand in’s stand in again. How lovely to get an actual proper (and very enjoyable) Toughie on a Tuesday, not least because it gives me a chance to tick off ‘blog a Serpent crossword’ from my cruciverbal wish list.… Continue reading

DT 29230

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29230

Hints and tips by Mr K

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BD Rating  -  Difficulty ** Enjoyment ****

Hello, everyone.  Another Tuesday brings another time zone for me and another setter for us back-page solvers.  This week’s fine puzzle was created by the setter known on the Toughie pages as Donnybrook.  I thought it was a delightful combination of smooth surfaces, clever cryptic definitions, nice misdirection, and a generous helping of humour.  In a word (or two), it’s the cat’s meow.  Continue reading "DT 29230"