Clued In (Blogs)

Clued In #217 | A purpose in every sense

Mihir Balantrapu  |  08 January 2021

Hey there, and welcome back to Clued In!

Most words in a cryptic clue’s wordplay look useless, and just part of the surface grammar. They all have a purpose. A cryptic setter is honour-bound to give them all a purpose in the cryptic reading.


The Hindu Cryptic #13139 | Dr. X | 10 Down

CLUE: Developing hot legs and tush, silly (11)

Clue types: anagram

Definition: silly


Clue explained:

We need an 11-letter word here that means ‘silly’.

When the length of the answer is long-ish, anticipate an anagram to be involved in the clue’s wordplay. Here the anagram indicator is ‘developing’.

If you anagram ‘hot legs’ as well as ‘tush’ (the word ‘and’ is not part of the anagram fodder; it is simply a connector between the two fodder components ‘hot legs’ and ‘tush’), you get THOUGHTLESS, another word for ‘silly’.


Was the above clue fun to solve? Did you get a kick out of understanding how to work out the answer to a cryptic crossword clue? Did you enjoy being given a random sentence that ultimately leads to a completely unexpected but totally decipherable answer? Do you feel like you could use some help to guide you towards the answer for each of the 20-30 clues that usually bamboozle you in each puzzle? Well, look no further!

Ok, look just a little further. Because, every Sunday, The Hindu Crossword Plus will be posting a new The Hindu Cryptic puzzle with annotations for each clue! Go ahead and bookmark that link and play the latest puzzle.

Each annotation will give you helping hints and hold your hand as we work out the answer together. If you liked the long-winded explanation to the above clue, then you will surely enjoy the crisper versions we give you in The Hindu Cryptic on Sunday puzzles, when you click the button ‘Reveal’ and then ‘Show a hint’.

And guess what, The Hindu Cryptic on Sunday is absolutely free! All you have to do is sign up to play.

To become better at solving cryptic crosswords, you should just do one simple thing. Just subscribe to The Hindu Crossword Plus. That’s the place where you can solve cryptics live to your heart’s content. Come over to Clued In to get your doubts cleared and your craft honed.

Click right here to subscribe to the interactive THCrosswordPlus, so you can solve on your mobile phone, get hints, and even check your answers on the go!