The most difficult quiz

by Chris Bertram on December 24, 2004

With it being Christmas, the Guardian has again published “the world’s more difficult quiz”:,3604,1379479,00.html as given to the pupils of King William’s College. A first scan leaves me with a single-figure score, but I bet Kieran would do much better….

UPDATE: Mark D. Lew has posted “an annotated list of answers”: (179/180).



Frank O'Connor 12.24.04 at 9:30 am

I got one!

(“Under bare Ben Bulben’s head/
In Drumcliff churchyard Yeats is laid”)


fyreflye 12.24.04 at 4:18 pm

No questions about NASCAR winners? Just what you’d expect from elitist snobs with bad teeth.


Jeremy 12.24.04 at 5:19 pm

That thing is unreal…


Walt Pohl 12.24.04 at 5:24 pm

I am an ignorant savage.


Tom 12.24.04 at 6:05 pm

Older history quizzes don’t get easier as time passes; they get harder and less relevant. At first glance, it seems only 10 out of 180 questions pertain to this century, but with a closer inspection I noticed that they snuck in some more modern ones. I would be much more amused to see an old math or science quiz, which in theory should be just as hard today.


Thlayli 12.24.04 at 6:44 pm

I got two!!

1.8: St. Louis, the Olympic host city in 1904.

14.10: The Sturmabteilung, or “SA”, were the rioting-and-brawling arm of the Nazi Party in its early days. Also known as “stormtroopers” and “brownshirts”.


Jasper Milvain 12.24.04 at 8:27 pm

If you’re trying to do it, it may help to know that some of the sections are themed. There seem to be fruit names in the answers to section 15, for example. Saying any more would (a) be spoiling it and (b) imply I know any more, which I don’t.


ProfWombatq 12.24.04 at 8:28 pm

Albert Einstein was the Berne patent clerk.
Roger Bannister ran the under 4-minute mile.
The Chicago fire began in O’Leary’s barn.


backword dave 12.24.04 at 10:34 pm

FWIW, presaltation inspection is “looking before you leap” but I can’t remember the fable. The answer to 2:15:25 is Paula Radcliffe; and 18.28 is Bob Beamon (USA) Long jump record 1968 Mexico Olympics. The tearooms suggest Charles Rennie Macintosh, but that’s a wild guess. Captain Gundal, I hazard, may have been to the South Pole with Amundsen. As Kevin Drum knows, Orson Welles made the greatest film of all time, and Einstein worked in the patent office in Berne.
Wild guess, I think a Pius was Pope around JFK’s time; so I’d guess a Pius + a random Roman Numeral. The nudes might be Lucien Freud, but again that’s a guess.
Did Engels own a “grand factory”? Rakes’s Progress must be The Great Fire of 1666. Checking Kevin’s answers 12.7 is Borg beating McEnroe. (McEnroe won the fourth set after 34 tie-breaks.) The condiment is sauce (HP or Daddies).
I think that’s the most I’ve ever got.


Cryptic Ned 12.25.04 at 1:33 am

The man who was hanged after Harpers Ferry was John Brown, a white man who tried to incite slave revolts.

That being the extent of American content (except for sports), that’s all I know.

Google tells me that the “president who overlapped” must have been in Zambia, so it must have been Kenneth Kaunda.


dave heasman 12.25.04 at 2:11 am

“68 – 27 – 90 – 19? ”

is Jim Laker at the 1956 Oval Test.


dave heasman 12.25.04 at 2:16 am

and ” 1,315 – 61,237 – 106 – 316* – 50.65? ”

I thought was Jack Hobbs’ lifetme batting record, certainly the run total & average are, but he got 197 centuries, not 106.


dave heasman 12.25.04 at 2:18 am

which “Condiment can be parliamentary or paternal?”

HP Sauce & Daddies sauce.

Goodnight & merry christmas.


Kieran Healy 12.25.04 at 3:41 am

I’m a bit tired, but here are my answers/guesses: I promise I didn’t look at anyone else’s, or use Google. (I think the quiz is designed with non-Googlable answers in mind, if memory of last year’s version serves.)

1.8: St Louis.

[Um, big gap here.]

8.1 William Tell, I think.

8.3 Maryland? Virginia?

8.4 Sellar and Yeatman?

9.1 Um, the Answer? Actually, looking ahead, all the answers in this section seem to be about hills or mountains. So I have no idea.

9.2 Loch Lomond. (The Bonny, Bonny banks thereof.)

9.3 Dunno. Mt Doom? Actually, this doesn’t sound like Tolkien at all.

9.4 Mt Bredon. (Housman.)

9.5 The navigator Saint is St Brendan, and I think Brendan’s Oratory is on one of the Blasket Islands.

9.9 Ben Bulben’s head.

10.3 Estee Lauder?

10.6 Albert Einstein.

10.7 Orson Welles? (Some AFI Top 100 list or other this year.)

11.3 Rome?

11.10 Great fire of Chicago.

12.1 Jonathan Edwards triple jump?

12.7 John MacEnroe (vs Borg?)

12.9 Roger Bannister (mile record)

12.10 (Guess): An Isle of Man TT record speed round the island. Only cos I used to watch that each year to see who’d die from hitting a telephone pole.

13. “What on 198” …? Isn’t 198 the BBC Long Wave frequency for Radio Four? If so:

13.1 This is a shipping area forecast checkpoint somewhere — like Finisterre or something.

Hang on, they’re all shipping area forecast checkpoints:

13.2 The Irish Sea. (haha.)

13.3 Hebrides. (Hebrides Overture).

13.4 Trafalgar?

13.9 “Puffin Island” is Lundy.

13.10 Dogger?

The others should be easy for Shipping Forecast nerds (bigger ones than me, I mean.)

14.1 Some kind of plant, sounds like. Or animal.

14.4 Brown Sauce. (HP, Daddies.) Ah! Looks like the theme of this section is “Brown.”

14.5 Swift was the Dean of Christ Church, famously horrified and fascinated by poop.

14.7 John Brown.

14.9 Capability Brown?

14.10 The Brownshirts, I guess.

15. Looks like fruit is the theme there.

15.1 Georgia is a peach. (I’m staying just down the road from it right now.)

15.3 The Raspberry.

17.5 Look before you leap? But what’s the fable?

17.10 Sounds Maori.


Kieran Healy 12.25.04 at 3:45 am

Gahh. 14.9 is not of course Capability Brown, who designed gardens in England. Maybe the unsinkable Molly Brown, but I doubt it.


Wendy 12.25.04 at 4:09 am

Section 10 must be “Steins.” 10.4 is Victor Frankenstein. 10.9 seems to be Sir John Rothenstein, thanks to Google. That makes 10.7 Sergei Eisenstein (Battleship Potemkin).

And that’s as far as I can go. Anyone else?


cleek 12.25.04 at 5:01 am

Patent clerk is Al Einstein. that, the sub-4 minute mile, and John Brown were all i could get.

damn tough test for a Yankee like me.


raj 12.25.04 at 5:09 am

This quiz suggests to me something like Trivial Pursuit. Other than trying to impress someone at a cocktail party, of what use is the minutiae in the quiz?


Dr. Squid 12.25.04 at 6:42 am

18.29 m is in fact not Bob Beamon’s old and since broken world record in the long jump – it translates to 59 feet, 11 inches in English system units. That’s more indicative of the triple jump, which was set at 18.29m by Jonathan Edwards of the UK in 1995.


Dr. Squid 12.25.04 at 7:05 am

Like I’d know these off the top of my head…

1.5 Chekhov died in 1904 in Badenweiler.

14.1 Thecla betulae is a European species of butterfly known as a brown hairstreak.

Section 15, if Georgia is a peach, then the section is about fruit.

15.2 The moon stood still on Blueberry Hill, where I founf my thrill.

15.10 Jardine’s bodyliners? A cricket team. Manager? Plum Warner.


backword dave 12.25.04 at 11:38 am

Dr Squid, you’re soo right about it being Jonathan Edwards not Bob Beamon. It was late. I think I added around 10m to Beamon’s effort.


Backword Dave 12.25.04 at 11:59 am

Oh Dur: 15.3 Gooseberry.
17.1 Foxtrot.
18.8 Eurostat Statistical Compendium.


andy 12.25.04 at 1:30 pm

15.6 overlapping president: The Rev Canaan Banana of Zimbabwe


Emmanuel 12.25.04 at 2:32 pm

Two more :

8.7 : Alternative Current.
8.10 : a variety of carnation.

And 12.4 is obviously about golf (4 rounds and total).


Andy 12.25.04 at 3:37 pm

12.5: 38 – 26 – 12 – 0 – 73 – 26 – 90?

Arsenal’s unbeaten run 2003/4 season.


Kieran Healy 12.25.04 at 5:09 pm

Gaaah Pt 2. I said I was tired. Gooseberry, not Raspberry of course!

Playing the Goosah is an expression I’ve not heard in years.

Blueberry Hill, yes. So all fruit.


John Quiggin 12.25.04 at 7:51 pm

This quiz has an error! The perpetual curate of Hogglestock (not Hoggleswick) was Josiah Crawley, the central character in The Last Chronicle of Barset. Can I go home with full marks now?


Dr. Squid 12.25.04 at 11:55 pm

15.8 Knowing the fruit theme, it’s a cherry picker.


dave heasman 12.26.04 at 12:11 am

The quiz has another error. It’s Gene Autry, not Autrey.


Michael Kremer 12.26.04 at 12:38 am

Others have gotten the few I could get on my own (Fires: Rome, Chicago; hanged: John Brown.) But I do know that the Pope at the time of JFK’s death was no Pius, but John XXIII. Don’t know if he said a mass for JFK, though.


mv 12.26.04 at 2:26 am

6.2 I believe the connection betwen Zermatt and St. Moritz is the Glacier Express.
8.7 Old Father William. I’m sensing a “William” theme in the 8’s; maybe Middle Plantation was Williamsburg.
17.4 Quick brown fox.
18.9 Hurricane Charley. The Peninsula in question being Florida.

Whoo. I’m going to go read something simple with very short words for a while now.


Maureen 12.26.04 at 4:26 pm

Section 10 must be “Steins.”

Then 10.3 must be Helena Rubenstein, not Maybelline (as I originally guessed). If the theme of 10 is “Steins”, then John XXIII can’t be the answer to 10.1–it would have to be a priest named Stein or a variation thereof.

18.9 is Charlie (hurricanes)

Would 2.9 be Desmond Tutu?


Maureen 12.26.04 at 4:49 pm

10.8 may be Grotrian-Steinweg, the predecessor to Steinway & Sons. (“Grand” factory?)


anon 12.26.04 at 9:29 pm

10.1 Leonard Bernstein wrote a mass commemorating JFK’s death,commissioned by Jacqualine Kennedy Onassis


Tom Slee 12.26.04 at 10:57 pm

I didn’t think I’d be able to add any at the end of this, given that I only got a few. It would be even better if I had got the answers myself:

2.4 Mr. Collins (Pride & Prejudics), thanks to Lynne

3.6 Some railway tunnel in Liverpool (thanks to Liz)

6.3 Offa’s Dyke (thanks to Jeff)

6.4 Pennine Way (I actually knew that one)

6.8 Hadrian’s Wall (Liz & Jeff)

6.9 Chunnel (Jeff)

7.3 Q. Mary? (Liz)

8.5 Rainbow Warrior? (Lynne) though it doesn’t fit with any Williams.

12.6 Liz says Steve Waugh. Someone above says Jack Hobbs. I say, I have no clue.

15.7 Harry Lime (Liz again, or Mum)

18.7 Princess Alice (oldest Royal)? Liz yet again.


Lynsey 12.27.04 at 1:33 am

Section 4 are either all doctors or people with a medical background. out of the 7 i have 4 i have found to be doctors.
4.2 Dr Crippen
4.3 Dr Edward Pritchard
I help my parents and I have found all my answers on
Section 3 i think the link is liverpool.
Section 6 6.10 L5 Barcelona Metro
in section 5 i think all the questions are names of boats.
5.2 tayjack? ans Cromer Pier
5.6 Foudroyant? ans Blackpool sands (i think)


Lynsey 12.27.04 at 1:34 am

Section 4 are either all doctors or people with a medical background. out of the 7 i have 4 i have found to be doctors.
4.2 Dr Crippen
4.3 Dr Edward Pritchard
I help my parents and I have found all my answers on
Section 3 i think the link is liverpool.
Section 6 6.10 L5 Barcelona Metro
in section 5 i think all the questions are names of boats.
5.2 tayjack? ans Cromer Pier
5.6 Foudroyant? ans Blackpool sands (i think)


snorbans 12.27.04 at 2:39 am

Round 1: Q1: Rockall was hit on 28 June by the Norge under Captain Waldemar Gundal. Q3: Charles Rennie Mackintosh; Q4: Sisavang Vong, 12th king of Laos; Q5: Anton Chekhov; Q6: Madame Butterfly; Q7: The Royal Horticultural Society; Q8: St Louis; Q9: its boat, the General Slocum, caught fire on the East River. Q10: First suburban electrified train journey.


snorbans 12.27.04 at 2:46 am

Round 2: Q1: Frances Davey in Jamaica Inn; Q2: The Vicar of Bray; Q3: Sam Weech, the vicar in The Titfield Thunderbolt; Q4: Mr Collins in Pride and Prejudice; Q5: Mr Chadband in Bleak house; Q6: Mr Roundhay in The Devil’s Foot (a Sherlock Holmes story); Q7: Mr Brocklehurst in Jane Eyre; Q8: Mr Daly in The Sorcerer by Gilbert & Sullivan; Q9: John Buchn’s Prester John; Q10: Josiah Crawley in The Last Chronicle of Barset.


snorbans 12.27.04 at 2:56 am

Round 3 is about Liverpool: Q1: I think this might be Lime Street; Q2: The Boswell family in Bread; Q5 Aubrey Thomas, architect of the Royal Liver Building with its twin statues of Liver birds; Q6: Merseyrail Link; Q7: Nathaniel Hawthorne; Q8: is probably Turmeau’s in Water Street (the second oldest cigar shop in England); Q9: I’d guess refers to the Hillsborough stadium disaster of 1989.


snorbans 12.27.04 at 3:07 am

Round 4 poisoners: Q1: Mary Wilson 1957; Q2: Dr Crippen 1910; Q3: William Pritchard 1865; Q4: Thomas Neill Cream 1891; Q6: an apothecary named Weston, at the behest of the Countess of Essex in 1615; Q7: I’d guess is The Wimbledon Poisoner whose name escapes me; Q8: Graham Frederick Young 1971; Q10: Herbert Armstrong poisoned his wife at Hay in 1921 but used arsenic, not morphine.


snorbans 12.27.04 at 3:26 am

Round 5 is about ship collisions to piers: Q1: Deal 1873; Q2: Cromer 1993; Q3: Bangor 1914; Q4: Southend 1908; Q6: Penarth 1947; Q7: Yarmouth 1876; Q8: Blackpool 1897; Q9: Saltburn 1900; Q10: Skegness 1919.


snorbans 12.27.04 at 3:34 am

Round 6: Q1: The Vasaloppet cross-country ski race; Q2: The Glacier Express train; Q3: Offa’s Dyke Trail; Q4: The Pennine (walking) Way; Q5: Leighton Buzzard Railway; Q6: The Kaiserwagen cable car railway; Q7: Pulkovo Airlines from St Petersburg in Florida; Q8 The Roman Heritage Way; Q9: The Channel Tunnel; Q10: The Barcelona Metro blue line.


snorbans 12.27.04 at 3:43 am

Round 7: Q1: Edward II to Margaret, The Maid of Norway; Q3: Henry VI to Margaret of Anjou; Q4: Edward IV to Elizabeth Wydeville; Q5: Henry VIII to Catherine Parr; Q6: Edward I to Eleanor of Castile; Q7: Richard I (The Lionheart) to Berengaria of Navarre; Q8: Charles II to Catherine of Braganza; Q9: George III to Princess Charlotte; Q10: Edward III to Philipa of Hainault.


snorbans 12.27.04 at 3:50 am

Round 8 is all about Williams: Q1: William Tell; Q2: William IV; Q3: Williamsburg; Q4: Williamanmary the orange in 1066 and All That; Q5: The Sir William Hardy which became The Rainbow Warrior; Q6: Prince William Sound; Q7: Father William in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland; Q8: Richmal Crompton’s last book was William the Superman; Q9: William Rufus; Q10: Sweet William.


snorbans 12.27.04 at 3:58 am

Round 9 is about hills: Q2: Ben Lomond in On The Bonny, Bonny Banks of Loch Lomond; Q3: Snowdon in A Bay in Anglesey by John Betjeman; Q4: On Bredon in the poem by AE Housman; Q5: Gallerus on the Dingle Peninsula is for St Brendan; Q6: From high Plynlimmon’s (shaggy side) by George Borrow; Q9: Ben Bulben’s in County Sligo; Q10: In Lord Macaulsy’s poem The Armada, describing the warning fire lit on the highest point of the Malvern Hills, The Worcestershire Beacon.


snorbans 12.27.04 at 4:09 am

Round 10 has ‘stein’ in all the answers: Q1: Leonard Bernstein composed a Mass for the opening of the JFK Centre in 1971; Q3: Helena Rubinstein; Q4: Victor Frankenstein; Q5: Albrecht von Wallenstein; Q6: Albert Einstein; Q7: Sergei Eisenstein; Q8: Karl Bechstein; Q9: Sir John (Knewstub) Maurice Rothenstein.


snorbans 12.27.04 at 4:24 am

Round 11: Q1: The Great Fire of London 1666 portayed in Hogarth’s episode in the gambling house; Q2: The burning down of the Temple of Diana at Ephesus occurred while Alexander of Macedonia was being born in 356BCE; Q3: Nero has been accused of causing Rome to burn in 64CE; Q4: He was condemned to death for his part in starting the Reichstag fire of 1933; Q5: Matilda’s house, in Hilaire Belloc’s poem, while her aunt watched The Second Mrs Tanqueray; Q6: Harrods in December 1883; Q7: Helsinki in 1808; Q9: seems to be the Great Fire of London again because Hubert confessed to having caused it and was hanged; Q10: The Great Chicago Fire of October 1871.


Bob 12.27.04 at 4:31 am

2.1 is Francis Davie in Jamaica Inn (changed to a Squire in the film)
2.3 is the Vicar of Titfield in The Titfield Thunderbolt
2.7 is BrockleHurst in Jane Eyre
2.8 is Dr Daly in G & S’s The Sorcerer
Section 10 is Steins
There’s a wonderful family Stein,
There’s Gert and there’s Ep and there’s Ein,
Ep hammers,
Gert stammers
And no-one can understand Ein
Section 12 is British (and world)records as they stood then.
1 Jonathan Edwards
5 Arsenal’s last season results
9 Roger Bannister the world’s first sub 4 minute mile (the first 4 min mile was Jim Peters and that came afterwards.
10 Mallard steam train speed record (1930’s)
Section 13 is shipping forecast areas
Section 14 is Browns
Section 15 is Fruit
6 is Banana
7 is Harry Lime
Section 16 is English Villages:
Lillingstone Lovell & Dayrell
Carew Cheriton & Newton
(I was born not too far from the Lillingstones
Section 17 is Foxes
1 Foxtrot
2 Edward Fox
3 The Red Fox cf RLS’s Kidnapped
and so on
There is usually no theme for section 1 nor for 18
Got 27 without google help –
but then I have been doing it for 45 years since my late father started taking the Manchester Guardian as it was then!


snorbans 12.27.04 at 4:36 am

Round 12 is about sporting achievements: Q1: Jonathan Edwards’ triple jump in 2002; Q2: Cambridge University’s winning time in the Boat Race of 1998; Q3: Jim Laker’s innings at the Oval in 1956; Q4: Greg Norman at the British Open in 1993; Q7: Bjorn Borg’s winning score against John McEnroe in 1980; Q8: Paula Radcliffe’s London marathon in 2003; Q9: Roger Bannister’s sub-four minute mile in 1954; Q10: John McGuinness in the TT Formula 1 race on the Isle of Man in 2004.


snorbans 12.27.04 at 4:59 am

Round 13 needs knowledge of the BBC’s weather forecast for shipping broadcast on Radio 4: Q1: North Utsire; Q2: The Irish Sea (which includes the Isle of Man); Q3: Hebrides; Q4: Trafalgar; Q5: I think is German Bight because the island of Heligoland, seized from Denmark in 1807, was ceded to Germany in 1890 in exchange for Zanzibar; Q6: Dogger; Q7: Bailey (and Love’s Short Practice of Surgery); Q8: Fisher because Harry Conway ‘Bud’ Fisher drew the cartoon; Q9: Lundy; Q10: Fitz Roy (the captain of Charles Darwin’s ship).


snorbans 12.27.04 at 5:00 am

Round 13 needs knowledge of the BBC’s weather forecast for shipping which is broadcast on Radio 4: Q1: North Utsire; Q2: The Irish Sea (which includes the Isle of Man); Q3: Hebrides; Q4: Trafalgar; Q5: I think is German Bight because the island of Heligoland, seized from Denmark in 1807, was ceded to Germany in 1890 in exchange for Zanzibar; Q6: Dogger; Q7: Bailey (and Love’s Short Practice of Surgery); Q8: Fisher because Harry Conway ‘Bud’ Fisher drew the cartoon; Q9: Lundy; Q10: Fitz Roy (the captain of Charles Darwin’s ship).


snorbans 12.27.04 at 5:03 am

Round 13 needs knowledge of the BBC’s weather forecast for shipping which is broadcast on 198 long wave (Radio 4): Q1: North Utsire; Q2: The Irish Sea (which includes the Isle of Man); Q3: Hebrides; Q4: Trafalgar; Q5: I think is German Bight because the island of Heligoland, seized from Denmark in 1807, was ceded to Germany in 1890 in exchange for Zanzibar; Q6: Dogger; Q7: Bailey (and Love’s Short Practice of Surgery); Q8: Fisher because Harry Conway ‘Bud’ Fisher drew the cartoon; Q9: Lundy; Q10: Fitz Roy (the captain of Charles Darwin’s ship).


snorbans 12.27.04 at 5:11 am

Round 14 has brown as its theme: Q1: The Brown Hairstreak butterfly; Q2: Brown Clee Hill; Q3: GK Chesterton’s Father Brown; Q4: Brown sauce, which can be HP or Daddy’s; Q5: Tom Brown; Q6: Brown’s Hotel in 1837, London’s first public dining room; Q7: John Brown in 1859; Q8 I am guessing here that it might be Picasso’s Brown Period; Q9 CS Forester’s story Brown On Resolution was renamed this when released as a movie in the USA; Q10: Hitler’s Brownshirts.


snorbans 12.27.04 at 5:18 am

Round 15 has a fruit theme: Q1: The Peach State; Q2: Blueberry Hill; Q3: Gooseberry; Q4: The International Date Line (in 1994); Q5: (Andrew) Pear’s soap; Q6: Canaan Banana of Zimbabwe; Q7: Harry Lime; Q8: A cherrypicker; Q9: Mark Lemon (Punch editor); Q10: Plum Warner, the MCC’s manager in Australia during the so-called ‘Bodyline Tour’ of 1932/33.


snorbans 12.27.04 at 5:23 am

Round 16 requires a knowledge of place-names as follows: Q1: Duntisbourne; Q2: Hemingford; Q3: Manningford; Q4: Lillingstone; Q5: Ashford; Q6: Kibworth; Q7: Carew; Q8: Cropwell; Q9: Pillerton; Q10: Itchen.


snorbans 12.27.04 at 5:36 am

Round 17 has fox in all answers: Q1: Foxtrot (from the international letter recognition sequence); Q2: Edward Fox; Q3: The Red Fox; Q4: The quick brown fox (jumped over the lazy dog); Q5: The Fox and The Goat; Q6: An Account of the Foxglove by William Withering; Q7: George Fox who founded The Society of Friends; Q8: Could be either Biography of A Silver Fox or Biography of An Antarctic Fox, both written by ET Seton; Q10: The Fox Glacier.


snorbans 12.27.04 at 5:49 am

Round 18: Q7: Princess Alice as the oldest member of the British Royal Family; Q8: Eurostat (the statistical compendium of the EC) managed to miss Wales out entirely; Q9: Hurricane Charlie hit Florida; Q10: I’m guessing it’s Sandra Howard, when her husband followed Ian Duncan Smith as leader of the Conservative Party.


Backword Dave 12.27.04 at 9:34 pm

I don’t know who ‘Snorbans’ is, but I hate him/her.


Rodney Lea 12.27.04 at 10:03 pm

17.8 Foxfire (A. Seton)


dave heasman 12.28.04 at 12:52 am

Hey Dave –
“I don’t know who ‘Snorbans’ is, but I hate him/her.”

Me too, except he thinks Jim Laker is famous as a batsman..

“Q3: Jim Laker’s innings at the Oval in 1956;”

Anyone have an explanation for Jack Hobbs? The 61237 is him, but the 106? Is this the number of centuries after he turned 40?


snorbans 12.28.04 at 7:16 am

‘Snorbans’ is what we locals call our city and if you lived here you, too, could have hours on your hands to try a challenge such as this! Incidentally, you might have guessed that I’m female because I didn’t know the Jim Laker thing. Happy New Year to one and all.


atp 12.29.04 at 1:46 am

18.3 Calayan Rail
18.5 Welsh rugby union


atp 12.29.04 at 2:02 am

3.3 Sir John Moores and Cecil Moores


atp 12.29.04 at 2:31 am

3.10 Detective Fix was struck by Phileas Fogg at the Liverpool Custom House (Around the World in Eighty Days)


atp 12.29.04 at 2:50 am

18.1 Kelly Holmes won gold medals for Great Britain in the 800m and 1500m races at the Athens Olympics, matching Albert Hill’s medals in the 1920 Antwerp Olympics.


tony summers 12.29.04 at 9:18 am

13.1isWight(Antifer is Le Havre’s
oil port & France is abit posessive about the channel(sorry
La Manche)
11.1 I think it’s the Fleet Prison.
18.4 The King William College Quiz.


Soulskimp 12.29.04 at 3:47 pm

Many thanks to Snorbans. One correction – 3.1 is the Walker art gallery.


anne 12.29.04 at 3:53 pm

9.1 Yes Tor?


robertg 12.29.04 at 7:20 pm

11.1 was White’s gaming house , not Great fire of London which is 11.9


Ray Minovi 12.30.04 at 1:47 pm

I’ve got 160 so far. Stuck on 9.7, but 1000 ft is the line at which a hill becomes a mountain (in UK, anyway); 9.8, it’s in a poem but I can’t remember it; 11.8, ought to be easy to find; 17.9 an airborne rugby team? must be joking; 18.2, think it’s a commemorative peal of bells; 3.4, Liverpool memorial.
Some alternatives to suggestions: 17.8 Anya Seton wrote Fox Fire.
2.9 It was the rev John Laputa who preached at Kirkcaple
3.1 There’s a Stubbs pic of a racehorse called Molly Longlegs in the Walker Art Gallery
3.9 In 1810 the tower of St Nicholas’ Church fell, killing 24 children and 3 adults, which is near enough to 25 to allow for some inaccuracy in reporting etc
3.5 The man who sculpted the Liver Birds was a German, Carl Bartels, who was interned during WWII


Ray Minovi 12.30.04 at 1:57 pm

the look before you leap fable is the Fox and the Goat. Fox persuaded Goat to jump into well so he could stand on his back and get out
Thanks to Anne for Yes Tor
The Theatre Royal Glasgow which burned when The Second Mrs Tanqueray was on the bill; but it’s in Belloc too.
Still stuck on 10.10, who launched Winter Gale? I can’t find anything at all which helps.


ross 12.30.04 at 6:11 pm

Still badly stuck on 1.2, 3.4, 9.8, 11.8

A few comments:

3.8 was the Adelphi hotel
5.5 was Great Yarmouth

and,all those who jumped on poor Snorbans for Laker’s “innings” forgot to mention that it was at Old Trafford, not the Oval!


des 12.30.04 at 9:59 pm

106 for Hobbs is number of not out career innings
Laker is combined total bowling in both innings at 1956 Old Trafford test
17.9 is All Black Grant Fox
18.6 is NZ rugby journaistTerry McLean


Ray Minovi 12.30.04 at 10:26 pm

OK Ross.
1.2 is the Oseberg Ship burial.
11.8 Braithwaite’s fire engine was first used in the fire at the Argyle Rooms, London
3.4 ?
9.8 ?


Bridget 12.30.04 at 10:33 pm

In answer to Raj’s question:
‘Other than trying to impress someone at a cocktail party, of what use is the minutiae in the quiz?’
the pupils at the school sit the quiz twice – once before the Christmas holidays and once after the Christmas holidays. The objective is not so much to score highly at first as to increase your score by research. Not so much to know the answers as to learn how to research and find things out – a skill much neglected in many educational systems. Hence the Latin tag at the top of it ‘If you can know where to find something, that in itself is the greater part of erudition.’ Or something like that – it’s a long time since I did Latin.

…so while snorbans is loathsome for having so many of the answers, she is also much to be praised for knowing how to find them! Congratulations, snorbans.

(BTW the only reason I have to explain this is because you amongst you have already got all the answers I ever stood a chance at and many many more. So it’s my only remaining chance to shine…)


Mike Bath 12.30.04 at 11:38 pm

17.9 Uffa Fox designed a boat called the flying fifteen


Mike Bath 12.30.04 at 11:40 pm

17.9 Uffa Fox designed a boat called the Flying Fifteen


Mike Bath 12.31.04 at 12:00 am

10.2 Sir Jacob Epstein sculpted some nude figures for the front of the BMA’s HQ in London


des 12.31.04 at 1:08 am

As Mike Bath proved my Grant Fox answer( guess!) wrong I am going off in a Uffa.


mdl 12.31.04 at 4:23 am

9.8 is Black Comb, from Wordsworth’s poem. It’s confusing because the quiz says “church and storms” instead of “clouds and storms”.

18.6 is Geoffrey Rees-Jones, former principal of King William’s College who, on the Welsh team, scored the winning try against the All Blacks in the 1935 championship.

As of tonight, I’ve got 167 answered and presumed correct, a reasonably good guess on seven more, a dubious guess on four (9.5, 10.10, 11.1, 17.9), and no idea on two (3.4, 4.5).

By the way, I’ve seen several answers on this forum which I think are incorrect, including many of Snorbans’s. My answers are posted here, if you want to take a look.

What time do the real answers come out tomorrow?


mdl 12.31.04 at 4:35 am

Make that 168. I just got 10.10.

And people keep telling me that “flying fifteen” really does mean “aerial rugby”, so I guess Uffa is correct.


Elke 12.31.04 at 7:51 am

Not sure whether answers for these are already out there:

11.4 – Marinus von der Lubbe was executed by the Nazis for setting fire to the Reichstag (allegedly)

15.1 – Georgia is all peaches

17.7 – Amiable association are the Quakers (founded by George Fox)


Elke 12.31.04 at 8:08 am

Another one
11.7 – Alesund in Norway – burned down in 1904 – the then German Kaiser Wilhelm quickly sent ships with supplies to help the city – there is a monument to him in the city

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