The Stickler Weekly 220 Clue Hints

(click on the clue number to see the hint)

Click on underlined text for explanation of terms.

Need more hints for these or other clues? Just leave a reply below.

















The answer is found by butting together parts defined in the wordplay. There may be some positional indicators that change the order of these parts.
The clue has two parts, each one defining the answer without using cryptic devices. Ideally each definition should have no etymological relationship.
Either a mixture of letters is placed inside or outside other letters, or letters are placed inside or outside a mixture of letters. An anagram indicator and containment indicator will be present.
The answer is found by removing a letter, letters, or a word (either found directly in the clue or derived) from a word or words (or their synonyms). Subtractions involving synonyms must be done with contiguous letters, that is, a word will subtract directly unless specifically indicated. A subtraction indicator is present to initiate the action.
A type of clue that involves the mixing up of letters without the inclusion of a letter or letters. This clue will have an anagram indicator to signify jumbling and a subtraction indicator to signify the removal of a letter or letters.

A removed letter may be as seen in the clue, an abbreviation for a word in the clue, or the result of another cryptic device like taking the initial letter from a word. Removed letters may be a whole word as seen in a clue, the synonym of a word in the clue (if that synonym is contiguous within the anagram fodder), or the result of another cryptic device like taking the middle two letters from a word.

A pointer that signifies the placing of one or more parts of a clue (or their equivalents) around the OUTSIDE of one or more parts of a clue (or their equivalents).

Examples: holding, keeping, embracing - anything that creates the image of containment.

The structure of the answer involves either letters placed outside other letters, or letters placed inside other letters. Which type of container clue is determined by an appropriate container indicator.
The entire answer is found by reversing part of the clue, or a synonym for part of the clue. A suitable reversal indicator will be present.
Either a mixture of letters is placed inside or outside other letters, or letters are placed inside or outside a mixture of letters. An anagram indicator and containment indicator will be present.
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28 Responses to The Stickler Weekly 220 Clue Hints

  1. Michael Kaiser says:

    Think I have it all right but no solve. 5D is rising “false witness” beginning with r. I have 7D as axtxmxt. Beyond those everything else seems pretty straightforward.

    • Steve Clarke says:

      Hi Michael,
      You have 5d right so far, witness is a noun and the answer is a verb not often used.
      7d is right so far as well. It is a very clever clue, you just have to read it carefully, and take notice of the word “in”. Sorry if that doesn’t help much, but I don’t want to get into trouble for giving it away.
      Cheers Steve

  2. Steve Clarke says:

    Welcome back David, a great grid to return with.
    22a was my last in and gets the gold this week, had me scratching my head for ages, it’ll cause many light globe moments today. Other notables are 15a, 28a, 3d, 6d and 7d.
    Thank you 😃

  3. Steve Ball says:

    I managed to knock this off over lunch with no aids and, like other Steve,
    22-ac was the last penny to drop. Lots of excellent clues. 👍

    Steve = : ^ )

  4. Arthur Maynard says:

    After much scratching of head I got the congrats. Add my plaudits for 22a, just a little bit sneaky and last in. I needed the clue hint for 18d. I was in the right direction and might have got it if I had 22a first. All the mightabeens.
    Otheree of note
    1a, 11a (not the kind of people I know), 12a so easy, and yet so elusive. 14a and 16a for the short words well clued, 28a mentioned above, 1d verrry clever, 3d and 6d, I used the crosses and analysed the result to parse the clues. 8d a great clue – simple but teasing. and finally 16d which puzzled me almost to the end.
    David, They did not take away your setting talent in the operation. Thanks for this great resumption of service.

  5. Christine Hulley says:

    Hmmm … thought I had finished but no congrats. Not sure about 17a and 18d.

    • Christine Hulley says:

      I think 22a might be wrong as well.

      • Christine Hulley says:

        Think it’s down to 22a …

        • Arthur Maynard says:

          You need to think laterally about this double definition. It is not necessarily one who lives there. The fishing equipment is not used to catch the fish.

          • Christine Hulley says:

            Thought it might be a word that means climbing mountains as well as weighing fish. Obviously not.

          • Patrick Lewis says:

            Hi Christine,
            22a – looks like you’re on the right track. Re. the fish, interestingly there are two possible uses of the same word, one for measuring and the other for cleaning. I suppose you could even use it for weighing, but it doesn’t sound so good!

        • Arthur Maynard says:

          By the comments below, I think you are on the money with 22a. That leaves 17a (and you are pretty smart so I think you are this) and 18d (the clue hint is pretty clear here and the crosses support the hint). If you are not getting the congrats it is more likely that there is another error – in my case, usually hitting the wrong key while inputting in the online version.

          • Christine Hulley says:

            I don’t like the answer I have for 18d but it seems to fit?

          • Arthur Maynard says:

            It is a 4,3 which becomes a 5,2. David’s clue hint almost gives it away. Race is Dart (+word play), and time is a long time. This time can be spelt with three or four letters. In this case it is the three letter version, and it is a regular in crosswords. When you take advantage of my generosity, you —– — my goodwill.

          • Christine Hulley says:

            Yes, I have that as well so need to go back to he drawing board and check each answer.

  6. Patrick Lewis says:

    I bet Richard enjoys the 3d soup! Thought 28a was very clever clue too. Altogether very nice, clear but nifty puzzle.
    Meanwhile I’m finding the early #100s in the archives quite a battle.

  7. Richard Sternes says:

    Yes Patrick loved 3d, one of my few successes thus far. Totally bereft on ideas in North East corner. Blame it on wandering cyclone off the coast.

    • Richard Sternes says:

      All Done. Needed Solver if Last Resort for 12a.
      Given developments in recent years is IT still really part of THAT?

      • Arthur Maynard says:

        Wikipaedia (not always reliable) has this to say towards the end of the discussion.
        Update: National Geographic will recognize the area as disputed, according to a statement published Wednesday on the National Geographic site. The statement notes that disputed areas “receive special treatment and are shaded gray as ‘Areas of Special Status.’ with accompanying explanatory text.”
        The Wikipedians, meanwhile, continue their deliberation. They finally agreed on Wednesday to shade Crimea light green to reflect its disputed status. Though this hasn’t happened yet with Ukraine’s Wikipedia map
        Both Russia and Ukraine claim it. The Ukranian position is that the area is occupied by an An issue discussed in the text is whether the territory has bee claimed by an occupying force, and who has the authority to declare it part of one country or another. The jury and World opinion is still out. It really doesn’t matter whether it is previously or currently part of Ukraine apart form the exactitude demanded by the setter and the solver, where opinion is probably divided.

        • Richard Sternes says:

          Aaaah!!! Thank You Arthur, I think. Would not have got it without resort to Last Resort in any case. That Answer raised the further question.

          • Arthur Maynard says:

            It is hard enough deciphering crossword clues without having to keep abreast of current historical events.

      • Wendy Simpson says:

        Yes, I wasn’t sure if it was, either!

  8. Christine Hulley says:

    Got it at last! I had an S in one word that should have been D! Tut tut.

    • Arthur Maynard says:

      My computer cannot spell either. It seems to put adjacent letters in wrong places.

  9. Greg Mansell says:

    There were a few clues that I really puzzled over this week – mainly in the SW corner.
    28a: Clever definition
    4d: I liked “rising uncertainty”
    5d: I liked “false witness”
    18d: Last in. I got the answer, and then it took me ages to work out the wordplay – which ended up being fairly simple.
    Welcome back, David.