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560513.  Wed May 27, 2009 5:06 pm Reply with quote

(This thread contains the content of the various completed QQ games that there have been; the original games having been removed for reasons for space. Please do not post to this thread; if anyone wishes to start a new QQ game, please do so in a new thread.)

General QQ - TOG

31680. Wed Nov 16, 2005 6:52 pm Reply with quote
Human adults breathe about 23,000 times a day

31840. Wed Nov 16, 2005 11:41 pm Reply with quote
Bombs and explosions are often described in kilotons, for example the Hiroshima bomb let off an explosion of 10 kilotons.

A kiloton is equal to the explosive power of 1000 metric tons of Trinitrotoluene, or TNT.

The bomb over hiroshima therefore had the explosive power of 10,000 tons of TNT, while the 2004 earthquake which caused the boxing day tsunami was another 23,000 times stronger than that. (est)

That is an amount of TNT equal in weight to the cereal harvest of the entire world in any one year.

32021. Thu Nov 17, 2005 5:07 pm Reply with quote
Every photograph of the first American atomic bomb detonation was taken by Harold Edgerton

Last edited by wgboy on Thu Nov 17, 2005 5:24 pm; edited 2 times in total

32027. Thu Nov 17, 2005 5:16 pm Reply with quote
The photograph came about in consequence of an idea William Henry Fox Talbot (1800-1877) had whilst on holiday at Lake Como in Italy, using the Camera obscura and the Camera Lucida as aids to drawing.

Talbot reflected: ‘on the immutable beauty of the pictures of nature's painting which the glass lens of the camera throws on the paper in its focus...fairy pictures, creations of a moment and destined as rapidly to fade away.

‘It was during these thoughts that the idea occurred to me - how charming it would be if it were possible to cause these natural images to imprint themselves durably and remain fixed upon the paper.’

In Britain, Talbot made the earliest known surviving photographic negative on paper in the late summer of 1835, a small photogenic drawing of the oriel window in the south gallery of his home, Lacock Abbey: this rare item is now in the photographic collection of the Science Museum at the National Museum of Photography, Film and Television at Bradford.

Before this he had been experimenting with photogenic drawings: by coating drawing paper with salt solution and after it dried, adding a solution of silver nitrate, and by placing a leaf, or fern, or a piece of lace, on the paper's surface and exposing it to the sun, he obtained an image.

32107. Thu Nov 17, 2005 7:14 pm Reply with quote
Robert Boyle was the first to construct a small, portable, box-type camera obscura in about 1665.

In 1665 Boyle published the first account in England of the use of a hydrometer for measuring the density of liquids. The instrument he described is essentially the same as those in use today. Hydrometers consist of a sealed capsule of lead or mercury inside a glass tube into which the liquid being measured is placed. The height at which the capsule floats represents the density of the liquid.

Boyle is also credited with the invention of the match. In 1680 he found that he could produce fire by drawing a sulfur-tipped splint through a fold in a piece of paper that was coated with phosphorous.

Boyle experimented in animal physiology, although he disliked performing actual dissections. He also carried out experiments in the hope of changing one metal into another.

32804. Sun Nov 20, 2005 9:19 am Reply with quote
In 1654, Robert Boyle joined a small group of the most influential English scientists, mathematicians, philosophers and physicians who had been meeting weekly in London and in Oxford since 1645. In 1662 the group was chartered as the Royal Society which exists today as the oldest continuous scientific society in the world. The motto of this prestigious organization, "Nullius in Verba" means "nothing in words", i.e., all science should be experimentally based. In 1680, Robert Boyle was elected president of the Royal Society, but declined the honor because the required oath violated his religious principles.

32827. Sun Nov 20, 2005 11:02 am Reply with quote
Nullius in verba is taken from Horace and is a partial re-iteration of

Nullius addictus iurare in verba magistri
Quo me cumque rapit tempestas, deferor hospes

Not bound to swear allegiance to any master
Wherever the wind takes me I travel as a visitor

Epistles I

Other bits of Horace that lurk at the edge of actual familiarity are

Carpe diem

Grab the fish, er, no, er...Seize the day

Odes I

Undeservedly you will atone for the sins of your fathers.

Odes III


Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori

It is a sweet and seemly thing to die for ones' country

(Your father has an estimate for the soft furnishings)

Odes III

but ultimately most likely known as a result of being quoted by Wilfred Owen (1893-1918) in his poem Dulce et decorum est and presented in that instance as

The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori

33089. Mon Nov 21, 2005 2:41 am Reply with quote
Wilfred Owen was born in Plas Wilmot, near Oswestry, on 18th March 1893. In October 1915 he enlisted in the Artists' Rifles, though he previously considered himself to be a pacifist. He first saw action with the Manchester Regiment in January 1917. In the summer of that year, he was badly concussed at the Somme when a shell landed just yards from him. He spent several days stranded in a crater with a mangled corpse, and was diagnosed with shell-shock. While receiving treatment for this at Craiglockhart War Hospital, he met and received encouragement from fellow poets Siegfried Sassoon and Robert Graves. In August 1918 he was declared fit to return to the front. He fought at Beaurevoir-Fonsomme, where he won the Military Cross. While leading his men across the Sambre Canal on 4th November 1918 Owen was fatally wounded by machine-gun fire. A week later the Armistice was signed. Only five of his poems were published during his lifetime, but in 1920 Sassoon arranged for the publication of his Collected Poems.

33119. Mon Nov 21, 2005 10:50 am Reply with quote
The Artists Rifles have a curious history: the unit was raised in 1860 as the 38th Middlesex Rifle Volunteer Corps, and all its members were professional painters, sculptors, architects, musicians, actors, etc. They eventually became a territorial SAS unit, the 21st Special Air Service Regiment. Their cap badge was very well-designed, as you would expect, and featured the heads of Mars and Minerva as an indication of the dual nature of their interests, warlike and artistic.

Amongst their commanding officers was John Buchan.

33127. Mon Nov 21, 2005 11:33 am Reply with quote
What we in the UK know as a Mars Bar is called a Milky Way in the USA as a result of a family dispute which caused Frank Mars's son Forrest Mars to leave for the Tobler and Nestle companies in Switzerland after a $50,000 buyout from his father. Eventually after setting up in the UK and then consolidating by taking over his fathers company in the states in 1964.

Snickers, Mars, Milky Way, M&Ms and Uncle Ben's Rice are all Mars products although Forrest snr caused many private and personal problems by his volatile perfectionism, eg each Snickers (Marathon) had to have exactly 15 peanuts on it.

M&Ms are the most popular candy in the world. The origins of M&Ms are in dispute – did Mars steal the idea from Rowntree, whose Smarties were similar to and preceded M&Ms?

M&Ms had their genesis in the search for chocolate that, as the ad says, “melts in your mouth and not in your hand.” The chocolate that tastes the best is chocolate with a melting point slightly below body temperature.

33336. Tue Nov 22, 2005 7:53 am Reply with quote
Peanuts are not in facts nuts but a legume related (as the name suggests) to peas. The peanut plant flowers overground, but the nut itself is found beneath the surface and is the budding ovary (called the 'peg') of the plant. The plant is originally from Africa, where it was being ground into stews as early as the 15th century.

Some interesting facts about peanuts:

The number one use for the peanut in the USA is the production of peanut butter.
Worldwide, two thirds of the crop is processed for peanut oil.
20% of the world's peanut production is used in confectionary.
The USA produces about 1.5 million tons of peanuts each year, and Americans annually consume enough peanut butter to cover the floor of the Grand Canyon.
George Washington Carver discovered more than 300 uses for the peanut.
Peanuts have been found in excavations of Incan burial sites.
Peanut allergies are increasing year on year, but are as yet unexplained.

33339. Tue Nov 22, 2005 9:10 am Reply with quote
Legumes fix atmospheric nitrogen gas into ammonium by addition of hydrogen (as protons) across the triazo bond of diatomic nitrogen. They are able to perform this function as a result of the presence of symbiotic bacteria of the genus Rhizobium which reside in specialised root nodules of the leguminous plant. Rhizobium species are host-specific. Rhizobium japonicum lives in symbiosis with soy beans, Rhizobium trifolii with clover, Rhizobium meliloti with lucerne.

Biological Nitrogen Fixation is of upmost importance in The Nitrogen Cycle but not all of it is due to the symbiotants of legumes. Free-living nitrogen fixing soil organisms include such species as Klebsiella pneumoniae, Azotobacter vinelandii, Clostridridium pasteurianum and Plectonema boryanum. This last of these examples is a Cyanobacterium or blue-green alga, much vaunted in Science-Fiction as the space explorers friend since they are both photosynthetic and nitrogen fixing. The combination of the two processes simultaneously in one organism despite biochemical contra-indications is accomplished by the differentiation of certain cells into structures known as heterocysts.
If all things are comparitive and comparisons are odious where does that leave us?

I know what was meant by the term forest in the 13th century - honestly I do.

post 100067 etc.

33358. Tue Nov 22, 2005 10:43 am Reply with quote
Put on a rubber surgical glove with a hot dog sausage stuck in one of the fingers. Put your gloved hand in liquid nitrogen and then, to the amazement of your friends, smash your "finger" with a hammer.

Be careful to remember which finger...

33378. Tue Nov 22, 2005 11:17 am Reply with quote
In the United States, 8.5 million cosmetic surgical and non-surgical procedures were done in the year 2001

Every year, surgical tools are left in approximately 1,500 patients in the USA. Fatter patients are more prone to having a surgical tool left inside of them due to the additional amount of space in their bodies

33381. Tue Nov 22, 2005 11:34 am Reply with quote
Sleep deprivation is believed to work in interrogation because the brain requires Rapid Eye Movement sleep to transfer information from short-term to long-term memory. If the subject is deprived of REM sleep the storage capacity of the brain is about two weeks and in order to remember anything else or think clearly rest is required.

This is a form of mental torture that it is necessarily difficult to enforce a meaningful ban on. Whilst its use has been confirmed against terrorist suspects the allegation that it is contrary to the Geneva convention has been repudiated.

33525. Tue Nov 22, 2005 5:46 pm Reply with quote
Dolphins can swim and sleep at the same time

Some species of dolphin sleep with one eye open

How does a dolphin sleep if it lives underwater but has to breathe air? The solution is a series of short naps. The dolphin's brain divides itself in two, that is, one half is asleep while the other half stays awake to get the dolphin to the surface for air

33536. Tue Nov 22, 2005 6:40 pm Reply with quote

The sexual antics of dolphins are something of a legend, but not it seems a myth. Whilst I was told at university that female dolphins have a system of locks or valves on their vagina to prevent salt water contamination of semen I cannot specifically confirm this. What information is available is rather more, er, gripping however.

Q10: Does the vagina of a dolphin always contract after penetration?

A10: Yes, for the most part, but sometimes they like to let you do all the work. That goes for pleasuring as well as mating. I was reminded by another zoo that if a female doesn't want to participate, they can contract their vaginal muscles tight enough that nothing could penetrate them. The other zoo also pointed out, that a female can do a lot more than just contract their vaginal muscles. By expanding their upper vaginal muscles they can emulate sucking and blowing. They can also ripple the muscles vaginal canal both upwards and downwards, in a milking motion.

Consider the female dolphin, whose vagina is a two-chambered orifice. The first chamber is for fun and games. The second, inner chamber is something she can open at will if she desires to procreate.

By comparison all the male dolphin has to offer is a 14 inch (35.56cm) penis. Poor thing.

<Edit>Eeek! When I posted these links I assumed, rather naively, that the 'zoo' refered to in the first one was a zoological garden not, as it seems a bestialist type "zoophile"! Aaaaanyway, back to my initial reason for this editing visit. I've just been watching a wildlife doc. on C5 and the bottlenose dolphin at least clearly does not have such a prodigious penis. The lecture I attended also referenced the bifurcation of the kangaroo penis, a fact which has been noted on QI but net knowledge as yet seems sadly "limited".</Edit>

Last edited by Celebaelin on Wed Nov 30, 2005 8:56 pm; edited 4 times in total

33555. Tue Nov 22, 2005 7:12 pm Reply with quote
During World War II, condoms were used to cover rifle barrels from being damaged by salt water as the soldiers swam to shore.

French soldiers during World War I had the nickname "poilu" which translates to "hairy one."

The U.S. army packs Tabasco pepper sauce in every ration kit that they give to soldiers.

33558. Tue Nov 22, 2005 7:19 pm Reply with quote
In World War II, the D-Day landings on 6th June 1944 took place on five Normandy beaches, codenamed Gold, Juno, Omaha, Sword and Utah. On Utah beach 23,000 US troops were landed.

Does that count?

33560. Tue Nov 22, 2005 7:21 pm Reply with quote
Even if your last name is Tabasco and you produce a sauce containing Tabasco peppers grown in Tabasco, Mexico, you cannot legally use the word “Tabasco” in your product’s name. The name was trademarked by Edmund McIlhenny, son-in-law of the orginator of Tabasco sauce, Daniel Avery.

From 1868 until the 1970s, Tabasco sauce was entirely produced on Avery Island Louisiana, but nowadays, 98% of the peppers used for Tabasco sauce are actually grown in Honduras, Venezuela, Mexico, and Columbia, though the seeds for these plants all come from peppers grown on Avery Island.

The peppers were a variety of Capsicum frutescens, originally from Panama but cultivated commercially in the Mexican state of Tabasco (and thus referred to as Tabasco peppers). McIlhenny eventually came upon a simple formula: pick the peppers at their very peak of redness, then crush them immediately and add Avery Island salt. The resulting mash was left to ferment, and after sufficient time had passed, it was blended with vinegar, strained, and bottled.

On the Scoville scale of chile hotness (a measurement of the level of capsaicin, the compound that gives peppers their bite), Tabasco sauce rates about 5,000 heat units. For comparison, Cayenne scores about 50,000; a Habañero can go as high as 350,000; and police-grade pepper spray is 5,300,000.

33563. Tue Nov 22, 2005 7:22 pm Reply with quote
<<polite ripple of applause>>

Actually that was for samivel, Jenny, you interposed yourself.

33564. Tue Nov 22, 2005 7:25 pm Reply with quote
The Whitfield rifle barrel was hexagonal. The Whitfield was supplied by the British to the Confederacy during the American Civil War and had superior range and accuracy. It was this rifle which was responsible for the death of Major General John 'Uncle John' Sedgwick who was in charge of the 23,000 man 6th Corps.

Sedgwick retained command when the five Union corps were reduced to three in March 1864. On May 9, 1864, while placing his artillery at Spotsylvania, he was hit by a sharpshooter's bullet just under the left eye and killed instantly, just after telling his gunners "They couldn't hit an elephant at this distance."

Last edited by Celebaelin on Tue Nov 22, 2005 7:28 pm; edited 1 time in total

33566. Tue Nov 22, 2005 7:25 pm Reply with quote
Rats! Pipped at the post! I'll take my Tabasco post and go and put it on the Qwiki - no research should go to waste.

33567. Tue Nov 22, 2005 7:26 pm Reply with quote

Although fewer Allied ground troops went ashore on D-Day than on the first day of the earlier invasion of Sicily, the invasion of Normandy was in total history's greatest water to land operation, involving on the first day 5,000 ships, the largest "armada" ever assembled; 11,000 aircraft (following months of preliminary bombardment); and approximately 154,000 British, Canadian and American soldiers, including 23,000 arriving by parachute and glider. The invasion also involved a long-range deception plan on a scale the world had never before seen and the clandestine operations of tens of thousands of Allied resistance fighters in Nazi-occupied countries of western Europe.
"History is made by stupid people. Clever people wouldn’t even try. If you want your name in the history books then do something dumb before you die."

Last edited by wgboy on Tue Nov 22, 2005 7:29 pm; edited 1 time in total

33568. Tue Nov 22, 2005 7:26 pm Reply with quote
Could have had this one:

The state of Tabasco, along Mexico's southern border with Guatemala, has become the hub of illegal immigration for Central Americans seeking to cross Mexico and illegally enter the U.S. Since 1995, Mexican authorities have detained more than 23,000 illegal immigrants in Tabasco, which shares only 167 miles of border with Guatemala.

33569. Tue Nov 22, 2005 7:29 pm Reply with quote
Now what happens?

33570. Tue Nov 22, 2005 7:30 pm Reply with quote
Oh that would have been a nice shot - if only I'd have thought of it...

I can't get into the Qwiki however - it won't let me edit the page I made or add topics. I've emailed Kieran - not sure if he's the right person but he's still linked as the administrator.

33573. Tue Nov 22, 2005 7:36 pm Reply with quote
My vote's as follows:

In Missouri it is illegal for four women to rent an apartment together, hard objects may not be thrown by hand and in Excelsior Springs Missouri worrying squirrels is not tolerated.

33576. Tue Nov 22, 2005 7:42 pm Reply with quote
St. Louis, Missouri was the first U.S. city to host the summer Olympics in 1904

The most popular American city for Kool-Aid sales is St. Louis, Missouri

There is a dog museum in St. Louis, Missouri

The oldest documented footwear found was a 8,000 year-old sandal found in a cave located in Missouri, USA

33604. Tue Nov 22, 2005 9:06 pm Reply with quote
Celebaelin, just a polite call over your Missouri illegality.

There are dozens and dozens of these "wacky law" stories on the net, some of which are true and some of which are total nonsense.

We generally like to have a more reliable source than it appearing on a "dumb law" website. Just to keep things 100% unimpeachable, you understand.

33609. Tue Nov 22, 2005 9:31 pm Reply with quote
OK, I'll see what I can find. I'd heard something about squirrels and went looking for it, although I thought it was about not impersonating squirrels...that may be somewhere else. On the other hand where, except in a full listing of the applicable laws, are you going to find out definitively that it is NOT the case that worrying squirrels is not tolerated (legally or otherwise).

33613. Tue Nov 22, 2005 9:54 pm Reply with quote
If you think I’m going to wade through this…

…think again.

Poisoning squirrels is against the law in Missouri.

In Marquette and University City the law regarding four (women) sharing an apartment still applies.

In Perryville it is illegal to throw stones at birds in the city limits.


33614. Tue Nov 22, 2005 10:34 pm Reply with quote
Excellent work Celebaelin, above and beyond the call of duty.

I wasn't meaning to be excessively pedantic, just that my "urban myth" detector goes into overdrive whenever I hear the word "law" with the word "wacky", "zany" or "dumb".

33617. Tue Nov 22, 2005 11:02 pm Reply with quote

I think samivel won the game fair and square, actually – the rule being that if you link the previous post back to the very first one it's all over.

Anyway, he rather seems to think so, because he's gone off and started a new game – so we'd all better run after him.

33655. Wed Nov 23, 2005 1:14 am Reply with quote
I only thought so because you applauded :)

33727. Wed Nov 23, 2005 2:16 pm Reply with quote
Absolutely, samivel.

That was my intention. It's possible that Celebailin diden't know the rules – we shall find out in due course, I dare say.

General QQ Round 2

27523. Thu Oct 20, 2005 12:53 pm Reply with quote
The Queensberry Rules were written by John Graham Chambers in 1865 and published in 1867 as "the Queensberry rules for the sport of boxing", although the first prize fight under held under the rules didn't take place until August 29, 1885, when John L. Sullivan defeated his opponent, Dominick McCaffery, in Cincinnati, Ohio. Rule 11 is that no shoes or boots with springs are allowed.


27525. Thu Oct 20, 2005 1:11 pm Reply with quote
John Sullivan writer and producer of Only Fools and Horses ended up with what was his third choice for the role of Del Boy, David Jason. The first choice was Enn Reitel, who among other things worked as a voice artist for Spitting Image and Tim Burton's latest Corpse Bride. Second was Jim Broadbent, who featured in the Black Adder series.
Both were too busy to take the part leaving the door open for David Jason in what was probabley his most popular role.

27696. Fri Oct 21, 2005 5:47 pm Reply with quote
The Death Adder (Acanthophis antarcticus) can deliver enough venom in one bite to kill 18 men.

27700. Fri Oct 21, 2005 6:31 pm Reply with quote
Venom was the original name of the bedtime drink that The Goodies had to market in the second episode of the first series, entitled Snooze.

27703. Fri Oct 21, 2005 7:24 pm Reply with quote
This year's IgNobel prize for Economics was won by an inventor who'd managed to dramatically increase working hours by making an alarm clock that, once it goes off, scoots away and hides somewhere under a chair, thus making the owner get up instead of repeatedly hitting the snooze button.

27715. Fri Oct 21, 2005 8:57 pm Reply with quote
Just around the corner from the QI building in the High Street stands Fitrite shoe shop, a grade 2 listed building, throughout it's history it has had many guises including 2 other shoe shops/cobblers, an antique dealers 3 times and a confectioners. However the most relevant occupier in it's history for the purposes of the game is Theophilus Carter (1875-1883) an upholsterer and cabinet maker. He had an exhibit at the Great Exhibition of 1851, the brainchild of Henry Cole and backed by Prince Albert against the wishes initially of parliament for fear of it losing too much money. That exhibit was the Alarm clock bed that ejected the sleeper from the bed, ensuring that the subject woke on time.

Lucy Morales
27765. Sat Oct 22, 2005 12:27 am Reply with quote
Boot and shoemakers are often commonly called "cobblers." But the word cobbler is more properly applied to shoe repairmen. Those who actually make footwear are known as "cordwainers." This term has its antecedents in the word "cordovan" which was a reddish leather produced in Spain. Hence, one who worked in cordovan was a cordwainer. Shoemakers who made custom, made-to-order shoes were known as "bespoke" makers.

27768. Sat Oct 22, 2005 12:39 am Reply with quote
Hans Christian Andersen, Stalin, Christopher Marlowe, Gerard Mercator and Louis Braille were all the sons of cobblers.

Lucy Morales
27773. Sat Oct 22, 2005 1:03 am Reply with quote
Danish fairy tale writer Hans Christian Andersen was probably bisexual in orientation, if not necessarily so in action. He fell in love with both men and women, though he may well have remained a virgin.
I'm sure Mr. Fry would know for sure ;-)

27780. Sat Oct 22, 2005 10:08 am Reply with quote
The Virgin Birth isn't referred to at any point by St Paul the Evangelist, even when referring specifically to Jesus's birth in his letters.

Liberal theologians posit that the idea became current after Paul's execution in about 64AD.

27787. Sat Oct 22, 2005 11:29 am Reply with quote
One of the lesser remembered members of the Liberal party during Campbell Bannermans government of 1905-1908 was the Under Secretary for the Colonies. A post he served until CB's death in 1908 when under Asquith's leadership he became the youngest Cabinet member as President of the Board of Trade. Initially Member fo Manchester NorthWest he lost his seat in a byelection but quickly returned to parliament as the Member for Dundee. He was married in September 1908 and later was voted as the Greatest Briton. He was Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill , initially honourable member of the Liberal Party.

Quaint Idiot
27806. Sat Oct 22, 2005 1:28 pm Reply with quote
Campbell Bannerman's predecessor as First Lord of the Treasury (and Winston Churchill's successor as First Lord of the Admiralty) was Arthur James Balfour, of the Balfour Declaration, which declared a home state for the Jews. Earlier in his career he was Secretary for Scotland and then for Ireland, but some considered him to be too inexperienced for these posts and suggested favouritism on the part of by his uncle, Robert Gascoyne-Cecil the third Marquess of Salisbury who was then 'Prime Minister'. This led to the expression 'Bob's your uncle', indicating (for any non-Brits who may not be familiar with it) an easy achievement.

27824. Sat Oct 22, 2005 3:23 pm Reply with quote
The Balfour Declaration is the popular name for a letter written by Arthur James Balfour in 1917 to Lord Rothschild in which he promised the British Government's support for a national homeland for the Jews in Palestine.

But Palestine, surprisingly, was only one of several sites considered for a Jewish state in a list originally drawn up by Zionist activists in the late 19th century.

Another was Uganda and a third was Al Hasa, the name for the south eastern corner of the Arabian Peninsula.

Al Hasa was on the short list because it is, according to legend, the birthplace of Abraham. Zionists have been kicking themselves for rejecting it ever since because (although this was not known at the time) it is also the part of Saudi Arabia where all the oil is...

Last edited by JumpingJack on Sat Oct 22, 2005 6:06 pm; edited 1 time in total

27828. Sat Oct 22, 2005 5:32 pm Reply with quote
The first Rothschild was Mayer Amschel Bauer, born in Frankfurt in 1743. Above the door of his father's shop was a red shield, chosen as an emblem from the red flag adopted by revolutionary-minded Jews in Eastern Europe.

Bauer changed his name to what we now know as Rothschild, though the Middle High German for "red shield" is rotschilt.

Lucy Morales
27830. Sat Oct 22, 2005 5:42 pm Reply with quote
Traditional wisdom states that the predecessor to the modern-day hotdog, the frankfurter sausage, was invented in Frankfurt-am-Main, Germany. However, others point to the word "wiener" as proof that Vienna (Wien), Austria, is the birthplace of the hot dog. There's not even agreement on who first came up with the idea of placing the sausage in a roll or bun. However, we do know that Charles Feltman opened the first hotdog stand on Coney Island in 1871.

27838. Sat Oct 22, 2005 6:15 pm Reply with quote
Charles Feltman (1841-1910) was an exact contemporary of King Edward VII (1841-1910) and of George Clunies-Ross (1841-1910).

In 1886, Britain granted all of the Cocos Islands "to have and to hold unto George Clunies-Ross and his heirs for ever". In all, the Clunies-Ross family ruled the Cocos Islands for more than 150 years.

27841. Sat Oct 22, 2005 7:55 pm Reply with quote
King Edwards are the most popular kind of potato sold in Britain, as a floury spud they are extremely versatile and because of their popularity they are grown on a large scale keeping the price down so there are no suprises in the results of the market figures. Or so you'd beleive, it turns out in a recent investigation by the food standards agency, 43% were in fact a differant variety all together. I transpires that this is an industry wide problem, 33% of all varieties were incorrectly labelled.

The most likely potato you would be buying marked incorrectly as a King Edward is a lesser known variety "Ambo" The reason, King Edwards are £30 - £40 per tonne more expensive than the lesser variety.

So next time you pick up your humble spud, are you sure you know what you're buying.
Cynical? Me.........Never

Lucy Morales
27843. Sat Oct 22, 2005 8:18 pm Reply with quote
In churches where there is only one speaker's stand in the center of the front of the church, it serves the functions of both lectern and pulpit. It is called the ambo. The word ambo comes from a Greek word meaning "both". In common usage, however, ambos are incorrectly called pulpits.

27855. Sat Oct 22, 2005 9:43 pm Reply with quote
The Greek root ambo also gives us 'ambidextrous'. It is thought that no-one is truly ambidextrous (ie equally adept at everything with either hand), although quite a lot of people are mixed (eg they write left-handed but throw a ball right-handed).

Mostly Harmless
27857. Sat Oct 22, 2005 9:47 pm Reply with quote

Last edited by Mostly Harmless on Sun Jan 08, 2006 11:12 pm; edited 1 time in total

27876. Sun Oct 23, 2005 12:35 am Reply with quote
The word sinister derives from the latin sinistre, or left: it was previously believe that left-handers were somehow in league with the devil.

27884. Sun Oct 23, 2005 3:19 am Reply with quote
A short story by Anton Chekhov is entitled The Shoemaker and the Devil.

Lucy Morales
27894. Sun Oct 23, 2005 10:02 am Reply with quote
Devil's food cake is named for its reddish-brown color, which comes from the reaction of the baking soda with the cocoa.

27901. Sun Oct 23, 2005 11:58 am Reply with quote
The pigment used to create a red-brown colour is ochre, which is naturally-occurring iron oxide, and it has been used on every inhabited continent for thousands of years; in Swaziland there are ochre pits which were excavated at least forty thousand years ago. The term covers a range of earth colours from yellow-brown to red-brown.

The use of the prefix "Red" to distinguish American Indians from inhabitants of India does not appear in writing before 1831, and is not a common usage in America itself. So it may be hard to make a definitive statement as to its origin, but we're told that it was a reference, not to skin colour at all, but to the ochre skin dyes worn by the first native Americans who were encountered by white settlers. (Actually I'm not altogether happy with this assertion; it does come from a responsible source but it doesn't sound very likely to me - if anyone can expand on it, please do so in the discussion thread).

Sorry, back to the game.

27904. Sun Oct 23, 2005 12:06 pm Reply with quote
The Kingdom of Swaziland is one of three remaining monarchies in Africa. The other two are Lesotho and Morocco.

27906. Sun Oct 23, 2005 12:11 pm Reply with quote
Lesotho is one of the poorest countries in the world. With a per capita income in 1999 of US$ 415, the country is grouped among the 49 Least Developed Countries and is ranked 120 out of 162 countries on the United Nations Development Programme Human Development Index.

It is twinned with Wales.

27910. Sun Oct 23, 2005 1:38 pm Reply with quote
Arguably the worst football team in Britain is Tregarth FC of North Wales. In just three games in the 2002 season, they conceded 79 goals and scored only one.

27918. Sun Oct 23, 2005 2:18 pm Reply with quote
In 1979 the Pittsburgh Steelers won the National Football League Superbowl. In Pittsburgh the official hours for 'Trick or Treating' are 5:30 - 7:30 pm.


27925. Sun Oct 23, 2005 3:01 pm Reply with quote
The "Original Most Haunted House in America" was Congelier Hall in Pittsburgh. Following many grisly occurrences there, Thomas Edison himself investigated the place, which was eventually destroyed by a gas explosion - the only building in the whole area of which no trace was left. Wooohoooo.

27929. Sun Oct 23, 2005 3:21 pm Reply with quote
Before Christopher Trace landed the role as one of the original presenters of Blue Peter he had been an actor.

The highlight of his acting career was as the body double for Charlton Heston in Ben Hur.

27943. Sun Oct 23, 2005 5:13 pm Reply with quote
Charlton Heston is suffering from Alzheimer's disease, which also killed among others former middle-weight champion boxer Sugar-Ray Robinson.

Boxing is governed by the Queensberry rules.

Hooray! I think I win!

General QQ: Round 2 discussion thread

27723. Fri Oct 21, 2005 9:59 pm Reply with quote
One important thing missing from the forum, somewhere to discuss and raise fishing challenges to the validity of the strokes played so here we are.

27770. Sat Oct 22, 2005 12:51 am Reply with quote
This must be the place to point out that I nicked my serve off eggshaped, in case anyone didn't notice.

27775. Sat Oct 22, 2005 7:57 am Reply with quote
post 27773As a "probabley", I think we need a source for this information, All of the HCA sites tend to lean towards him being a bit of a ladies man, indeed his final "conquest" was Jenny Lind, the Swedish Nightingale (who happened to have stayed not far from my house).

27820. Sat Oct 22, 2005 2:43 pm Reply with quote
I have always been suspicious of the "bob's your uncle" etymology. I had thought the "bob" part of the phrase just came from a general name for a person, rather than an real-life politician.

27842. Sat Oct 22, 2005 8:01 pm Reply with quote
I'm quite enjoying this game now, I've found there's some quite good links around if you pick out individual words and change the context in which they have been used.

I was a bit concerned that I would be left behind a bit, however It shows that with a bit of imagination the game is actually quite easy.

27920. Sun Oct 23, 2005 2:29 pm Reply with quote
Buggerbuggerbugger... I just missed what I thought was a good shot - the fact that Ozzy Osbourne was taught in class 2B of of Birchfield Secondary Modern School, Perry Barr, Birmingham, by Wil Parry Williams, of Tregarth.

Could we have a thread for just-too-late shots?

27922. Sun Oct 23, 2005 2:40 pm Reply with quote
Outside Courts perhaps?

27923. Sun Oct 23, 2005 2:40 pm Reply with quote
Fraid not Gaazy.

That's the rule for General Qing-Qong.

And that's why I suggested we could also have several two-handed qing-qong 'courts' or 'tables' running at once, where just two people would elect to challenge one another and everyone else would just watch.

I would take you on but we're going away for a few days for half term and I'm unlikely to have a decent internet connection.

You could throw your glove in front of someone else in the meantime and start a thread. I'm sure there are plenty of people who'd be honoured to play the game's namer!

27924. Sun Oct 23, 2005 2:46 pm Reply with quote

This is the joy of QI in general and qing-qong in particular.

None of it need be 'difficult' in an academic sense – because QI Theory says that 'interestingness' (in the way that we mean it at least) is a universal commodity. Like music, laughter or friendliness the good stuff appeals to everyone.

QI research is only 'difficult' in the sense that most people can't be bothered to do even the simplest thing diligently, clearly and persistently. They undervalue themselves and give up too soon.

I'm glad you're a qing-qong convert, and, if I may say so, it shows in the confident and stylish quality of your posts.

27935. Sun Oct 23, 2005 4:29 pm Reply with quote
Gaazy, sorry for beating you to the shot. Your factlet seems more interesting than mine and could also have given us Ozzy Osbourne links. C'est la vie

27947. Sun Oct 23, 2005 5:39 pm Reply with quote
C'est, as you say, la vie. I had a thunderous down-the-liner in response to JJ's Heston shot, but Jenny beat me to it - and won, to boot.

Good one, Jenny!

Is it Jenny to serve, under the rules?

27950. Sun Oct 23, 2005 6:54 pm Reply with quote
I think the initial fear was coming up against such educated people, it was then I recalled what Flash said to me once about the Qi ethos and decided that out of a paragraph or two writing about anything, there must be at least one word that leads to something interesting somewhere hence the south paw approach to the game.

All we need now is to get a Sunday newspaper interested and someone to do the commentary each week and I'm sure someone will find their long lost Uncle Robert

27957. Sun Oct 23, 2005 8:26 pm Reply with quote
Ha ha.

27960. Sun Oct 23, 2005 8:46 pm Reply with quote
On your other points, Flash is quite right, of course.

It's much more question of alertness and curiosity and seeing connections than it is of being 'knowledgeable'.

I doubt that anyone could play factoid tennis to this standard without Google to hand – no one is that knowledgeable!

Besides, the point of QI is that you learn lots of new things every day, the way all small children do.

Extremely few adults, however, have this experience. Most of us are going round and round with the same knowledge we had years and years ago.

As Abraham Lincoln said:

Most people who say they have thirty years experience usually mean they have one year's experience, thirty times over

In this sense, 'educated people' are often at a disadvantage in QI territory because they don't know how little they know.

28029. Mon Oct 24, 2005 11:00 am Reply with quote
Hi all,

Unfortunately my car has died so I've had to take a day off work, <sob>

If anyone's around for the next hour/half-hour and would like a game then I should be around.
Just to see how a one on one game would work.

28036. Mon Oct 24, 2005 11:22 am Reply with quote
I'm up for it. You serve. (it's now 11:22 in the real world)

28048. Mon Oct 24, 2005 12:23 pm Reply with quote
A point of query on QQ3,

If a let is called then who serves up the new rally and where does the winning link need to relate to?

28049. Mon Oct 24, 2005 12:47 pm Reply with quote
Would it be possible to have two balls in play simultaneously? Both balls would be played on the same thread, but in different coloured fonts - then you can earn a bonus point by reuniting the red ball with the blue ball by posting a piece of information which links to both of them - then the next shot carries on the reunited thread.

One can envisage a thread splitting into eight colours, and then someone plays an absolutely blinding masterstroke which ties all eight together at once. I think this should be encouraged by an escalating points system - if you reunite two balls, that's 2 points, three balls is 4, four balls is 8, five balls is 16 points, etc.

You'd get threads which were known to be gravid with scope for huge bonuses, like a lottery rollover.

28051. Mon Oct 24, 2005 12:59 pm Reply with quote
A brilliant, if potentially very confusing, idea.

28053. Mon Oct 24, 2005 1:48 pm Reply with quote
Excellent. Some kind of graphical representation of the colour-thread relationships in a play-by-play slo-mo, with optional player commentary. I see... I see... yes... podcasts.

There's that 'gravid' word again. Is this talkboard hitting puberty?

Frederick The Monk
28056. Mon Oct 24, 2005 1:54 pm Reply with quote
Gray wrote:

There's that 'gravid' word again. Is this talkboard hitting puberty?


Frederick The Monk
28057. Mon Oct 24, 2005 1:55 pm Reply with quote
Sorry, that should be:


28066. Mon Oct 24, 2005 2:36 pm Reply with quote
Actually I think it's "wo'eva". And very often there's a little jibe thrown in with it, like this:

"Wo'eva. Minger."

28084. Mon Oct 24, 2005 4:52 pm Reply with quote
"Woëvarr", surely. Then "Hand" or "Mubboverd?", possibly.

Zaphod Beeblebrox
28090. Mon Oct 24, 2005 5:08 pm Reply with quote
"Wo'eva. Minger."

Complete with handsigns and all

28150. Mon Oct 24, 2005 10:18 pm Reply with quote
Do we have another case of 2 balls being in play during round 4?

28233. Tue Oct 25, 2005 12:14 pm Reply with quote
I have a slightly unrelated question.

How do you pronounce Qing Qong?

Instinctively I seem to be saying Ching-Chong or King-Kong, but maybe it should be Kwing-kwong or even queue-ing queue-ong.

Anyone have an opinion? Gaazy, you invented the name. What did you have in mind?

28271. Tue Oct 25, 2005 4:16 pm Reply with quote
I say it King-Kong, like ping-pong.

Frederick The Monk
28276. Tue Oct 25, 2005 4:42 pm Reply with quote
I say 'Kwing-kwong'.

28278. Tue Oct 25, 2005 5:25 pm Reply with quote
I have to admit that I was thinking kwing-kwong, so that it would still rhyme with ping-pong but be distinct from King Kong.

The lack of a letter u after the initial letters Q (in order to maintain the QI brand, natch) of course makes it ambiguous, and also makes it look like the Chinese transliteration system which would make it jing-jong.

But I suppose the pronunciation won't be crucial until the radio series of Qing-Qong, closely followed by the BBC Four version and subsequent prime-time slots on BBC1..................

28379. Wed Oct 26, 2005 6:26 am Reply with quote
does the entry into OED not come first?

28395. Wed Oct 26, 2005 11:03 am Reply with quote
Would it be possible to credit a source for shots as some appear less likely than others. I do enjoy a very tenuous link but i would like to verify some factlets before i quote them in the pub and get shot down in flames ;-)

28397. Wed Oct 26, 2005 11:11 am Reply with quote
Good point - we should absolutely do that.

28727. Sat Oct 29, 2005 11:25 am Reply with quote
and so to confusion, is the winning shot when the game goes full circle and links back to a word in the serve? if so isn't post 28721 a winning post in game 7?

28731. Sat Oct 29, 2005 11:37 am Reply with quote
Sorry, missed that. I've noted it on the thread.

29191. Tue Nov 01, 2005 3:36 pm Reply with quote
post 29159 I cant help thinking that in a few weeks there will be another retraction special thread

29397. Thu Nov 03, 2005 1:47 pm Reply with quote

A bit late on this one. I was too quick with my weak Ford post, but anyone who is interested in cars may like the above link,

...that is apparently one of the most expensive cars in the world, and could be the future of driving.

The FCX is powered by hydrogen fuel cells, the futuristic technology that many automakers see as an eventual solution to the world's energy woes

Fuel cells have been around since the 1800's; they were used to provide internal power for the Apollo spacecraft, as well as drinkable water for the astronauts. Cars powered by fuel cells are electric cars that do not rely on batteries, but instead generate their own electricity. Fuel cells combine hydrogen and oxygen from the air in a chemical reaction, with water vapor as their only emission, at least from the tailpipe.

Me, I flipping-well hate cars, having just had one die an excrutiatingly expensive death on me. Grrrrrrrrrrr.

29411. Thu Nov 03, 2005 3:26 pm Reply with quote
That's really interesting, eggshaped. I think the big difficulty over here will be making the fuel available widely. Very few people even drive diesel cars over here because many garages don't sell it unless they regularly have trucks visiting. It would be a real bummer if you ran out of hydrogen in the middle of nowhere.

Last edited by QI Moderator on Thu May 28, 2009 7:18 pm; edited 1 time in total

QI Moderator
560515.  Wed May 27, 2009 5:12 pm Reply with quote

General QQ Round 3

Gaazy 27956. Sun Oct 23, 2005 8:26 pm

The Reichenbach Falls are situated in Meiringen, the administrative capital of the Oberhasli district of the canton of Bern. It is the place that claims to have invented meringue.

laidbacklazyman 27961. Sun Oct 23, 2005 8:55 pm

Oberhasli goats are native to Switzerland, although there are herds in Austria, Canada and the United States. They are know for their black markings on the face and the low slung ears giving the impression of alertness.

The milk is quite sweet and they are among the top 6 breeds of Dairy goat for milk production

Jenny 27965. Sun Oct 23, 2005 9:08 pm

Other breeds of goats include

Goats' milk contains more calcium than cows' milk.

Lucy Morales 27970. Sun Oct 23, 2005 10:01 pm

Called the land of snakes, India is steeped in tradition regarding snakes. Snakes are worshipped as gods even today with many women pouring milk on snake pits (despite snakes' aversion for milk). The cobra is seen on the neck of Shiva and Vishnu is depicted often as sleeping only on a 7 headed snake. There are also several temples in India solely for cobras sometimes called Nagraj (King of Snakes) and it is believed that snakes are symbols of fertility.

Flash 27979. Sun Oct 23, 2005 10:48 pm

When cobras appear to dance in time with a snake charmer's flute, they are actually responding to the movement of the flute rather than the sound of the music. Physiologically, snakes do have a sense of hearing but no ears - so their hearing is attuned to picking up the things that matter to them (such as approaching elephants), rather than to airborne sound.

simonp 28017. Mon Oct 24, 2005 8:50 am

Legionnaires' disease is an airbourne disease. It was first recorded in 1976 after an outbreak at the Bellvue-Stratford hotel. 34 people died.
The bacterium that causes legionnares disease wasn't isolated untill January 18th 1977, six months later. Before it was discovered as a determined to be a new disease it was thought to be the start of a Swine Flu epidemic.

laidbacklazyman 28032. Mon Oct 24, 2005 11:07 am

On August 5th 1976 for nine months London was without the familiar sound of Big Ben chiming out the hours. It seemed metal fatigue was the reason for the breakdown of the mechanism. The bell was forged at the whitechapel foundary and a crack in the bell means it no longer rings the true "E" that was intended.

eggshaped 28033. Mon Oct 24, 2005 11:08 am

Cole Porter's first effort at broadway was called See America First, but was a complete flop, closing after only two weeks.

In despair, he moved away, living it up in Paris and enjoying a real playboy lifestyle, however he told his friends back in America that he had joined the French Foreign Legion.

laidbacklazyman 28034. Mon Oct 24, 2005 11:15 am

I think a let is in order here there appears to be a double answer

eggshaped 28038. Mon Oct 24, 2005 11:25 am


Belle and Sebastian won the best newcomer award at the 1999 Brit awards.

The award was one of the first to allow on-line voting, a fact which was seriously exploited by the Glaswegian Indie Group. A concerted internet campaign, including many many multiple votes, led them to beat the odds on favourites Steps.

Flash 28041. Mon Oct 24, 2005 11:35 am

Q: How did Saint Sebastian die?
F: Full of arrows.
A: Although he was shot full of arrows on the order of Diocletian he was nursed back to health by Irene. He then went to remonstrate with Diocletian, who had him clubbed to death.

The whole story's a crock, of course - invented 2 centuries after his death.

Nobbler 28042. Mon Oct 24, 2005 11:47 am

Sebastian Moran was the second in command to Professor James Moriarty. Moriarty was the apparent cause of Holmes death at the Reisanbach Falls.

Nobbler 28043. Mon Oct 24, 2005 11:48 am

Sorry - Reichenbach falls

Do I win?

Gray 28046. Mon Oct 24, 2005 11:58 am

Oh! Brilliant! I think you do.

Flash 28047. Mon Oct 24, 2005 12:06 pm

Very good. Just to wrap it up, here's what Wikipedia has to say about Sebastian Moran:
Colonel Sebastian Moran is the villain of the Sherlock Holmes short story "The Adventure of the Empty House." He was born in London, 1840, and formerly served in the 1st Bangalore Pioneeers. He is self-employed but has worked for the late unlamented Professor James Moriarty. He plays cards at several high-ranking clubs to make money. He is also responsible for the death of Mrs. Stewart of Lauder in 1887. He has written the books: Heavy game of the Western Himalayas in 1881, and Three Months in the Jungle in 1884. He is the son of the late Sir Augustus Moran, former Minister to Persia. He was educated at Eton and Oxford. His address is Conduit Street, his clubs are The Anglo-Indian, the Tankerville and the Bagatelle Card Club.

Holmes has remarked that Moran is "the second most dangerous man in London".

QI Moderator
560519.  Wed May 27, 2009 5:16 pm Reply with quote

General QQ Round 4

28113. Mon Oct 24, 2005 6:58 pm Reply with quote
The title Fidei Defensor or 'defender of the faith' was granted to Henry VIII in 1521 by pope Leo X. Fidei Defensor still appears on pound coins even though Britain is no longer a Catholic country

28117. Mon Oct 24, 2005 8:50 pm Reply with quote
Seven popes resided in Avignon in France, not Rome, from 1305 to 1378:

Pope Clement V: 1305–1314
Pope John XXII: 1316–1334
Pope Benedict XII: 1334–1342
Pope Clement VI: 1342–1352
Pope Innocent VI: 1352–1362
Pope Urban V: 1362–1370
Pope Gregory XI: 1370–1378

In 1378, Gregory XI moved the papal residence back to Rome and died there. Due to a dispute over the subsequent election, a faction of cardinals set up an antipope back in Avignon, leading to the 40-year Western Schism during which there were as many as three "popes" in existence at any one time.

Lucy Morales
28118. Mon Oct 24, 2005 9:12 pm Reply with quote
There are at least two stories about the original eggs Benedict, though both date to 1890’s New York City.
One story names Delmonico’s as the point of origin, in 1893. A Mrs LeGrand Benedict were tired of the usual fare at the restaurant, and negotiated the new dish with the help of the maître d’hôtel.
The more interesting story credits Mr Lemuel Benedict, who requested toast, bacon, poached eggs, and a small pitcher of hollandaise to help treat a hangover one morning in 1894 at the Waldorf-Astoria. If true, Mr Benedict also appears to have been the first to recognize the therapeutic effects of eggs Benedict.

28124. Mon Oct 24, 2005 9:34 pm Reply with quote
Lemuel Haynes was the first black pastor to have a white congregation in America. He gained his licence to preach in 1780 and ministered to Rutland parish for 30 years from 1783 onwards.
He died in 1856 aged 80, having fathered ten children.

28144. Mon Oct 24, 2005 10:13 pm Reply with quote
Queen Victoria instituted the Victoria Cross on 29th of January 1856

28148. Mon Oct 24, 2005 10:16 pm Reply with quote
Queen Victoria was a british monach as was Henry VIII who is in the first fact. Don't think its really a win but its a link anyway.

28149. Mon Oct 24, 2005 10:17 pm Reply with quote
Rutland was first recognised as an official Shire County in the 12th Century, although its history goes back much further. Many of the town and village names date back to the early Anglo Saxon period, around the 7th Century.

Archaeologists from the University of Leicester found hyaena droppings, flint tools and more than 100 animal bones (including those of the woolly rhino) on a ridge-top at Glaston near Oakham. They also found a three-inch long “leaf point” flint tool (probably used to tip a spear) of a type similar to examples from southern Poland, dated to 38,000 years ago and possibly used by Neanderthals.

28162. Mon Oct 24, 2005 10:30 pm Reply with quote
In Jan 2002 research by a team at the John Radcliffe Institute of Molecular Medicine in Oxford led to the suggestion that the gene for red-headedness might have originated in neanderthals (Homo sapiens neanderthalis) who lived in Europe for 200,000 years before the Homo sapiens sapiens, ancestors of modern man, arrived from Africa about 40,000 years ago. The two species overlapped for a period of time and the Oxford research appears to suggest that they must have successfully interbred for the "ginger gene" to survive. Neanderthals became extinct about 28,000 years ago. However: Jonathan Rees, Professor of Dermatology at Edinburgh University, says "We don't know with certainty when the first redheads walked the earth but we believe these changes arose in less time than we thought, maybe 20,000 to 40,000 years ago." If this idea is right it contradicts the Neanderthal theory which assumes a gene at least 100,000 years old and possibly present before modern man left Africa. The whole idea of our ancestors interbreeding with Neanderthals is resisted by many experts.

Lucy Morales
28189. Mon Oct 24, 2005 11:19 pm Reply with quote
Henry VIII is known to have been an avid gambler and dice player. He excelled at sport, especially royal tennis, during his youth. He was also an accomplished musician, author, and poet; according to legend, he wrote the popular folk song Greensleeves. He was also involved in the construction and improvement of several buildings, including King's College Chapel, Christ Church, Oxford, Hampton Court Palace, Nonsuch Palace and Westminster Abbey.

28270. Tue Oct 25, 2005 4:15 pm Reply with quote
Whoa - we seem to have two balls going here, and I'm not sure Lucy didn't win with her first post.

QI Moderator
560523.  Wed May 27, 2009 5:20 pm Reply with quote

General QQ Round 5

Frederick The Monk
28275. Tue Oct 25, 2005 4:41 pm Reply with quote
Tecumseh was a Shawnee native American who took part in the war of retaliation in 1780, waged because of the murder of Chief Cornstalk as he was attempting to negotiate with white men.

When the Shawnee were caught between the British and American forces at the outbreak of the War of 1812 Tecumseh and many others allied with the British. The British commissioned him as a brigadier general.

He was killed at the Battle of the Thames on Oct. 5, 1813.

28277. Tue Oct 25, 2005 5:01 pm Reply with quote
The title "Brigadier General" was replaced by "Colonel Commandant" in 1922 and then by "Brigadier" in 1928. In the British army a Brigadier is a rather senior officer, just short of a General, but in French-speaking armies and police forces the rank is equivalent to "Corporal".

28279. Tue Oct 25, 2005 5:38 pm Reply with quote
Corporal punishment wasn't formally abolished in the Isle of Man until 1993, 17 years after the last birching, in January 1976, when a youth from Northern Ireland received six strokes for assault. He was the 60th young man to be birched on the island since 1960.

When taken before the European Court of Human Rights, the Manx authorities tried to head the appeal off by suggesting that future birchees could keep their trousers on.

28280. Tue Oct 25, 2005 5:40 pm Reply with quote
beaten to it, bugger

28281. Tue Oct 25, 2005 5:50 pm Reply with quote
Eeee, it's a cruel old game.

Lucy Morales
28290. Tue Oct 25, 2005 6:40 pm Reply with quote
The Welsh lay claim to the Manx cat in their legends and the people considered them sacred animals in early times.

Lucy Morales
28293. Tue Oct 25, 2005 6:50 pm Reply with quote
Despite its small size, only a fraction over 8,000 sq. miles, and with a population just under 3,000,000, Wales raises more sheep than any other area in Europe. Its 11,000,000 sheep represent about 15 percent of the sheep in the European Community. Because of the relatively poor soil of much of the land and high rainfall, about 80 percent of Wales is designated as "less favored areas" by the European Community. The conditions, however, are ideal for the raising of sheep. Especially famous is Berwyn Lamb, a succulent delicacy raised on the lush, green pastures of the Berwyn Mountains.

28295. Tue Oct 25, 2005 6:56 pm Reply with quote
Wow, you ran so fast along the court there, Lucy, you were able to hit your own ball back....

Lucy Morales
28307. Tue Oct 25, 2005 9:09 pm Reply with quote
Gaazy wrote:
Wow, you ran so fast along the court there, Lucy, you were able to hit your own ball back....

Apologies - when I realised I'd entered a 'Welsh' entry for the Manx cat, I couldn't resist a Wales/sheep entry. The devil took over in me. To acknowledge my misdemeanour, I'll bow out of this round ashamedly :'-(
... but will return ;-)

28308. Tue Oct 25, 2005 9:17 pm Reply with quote
The total rainfall for widecombe in the moor in August was 40mm. Widecombe is also the site of one of britains earliest recorded tornados in 1638, 4 people were killed and 60 were injured when St Pancras church was struck by lightening during the storm.

S:Widecombe parish link, October 2005

Last edited by simonp on Wed Oct 26, 2005 12:04 pm; edited 1 time in total

28324. Tue Oct 25, 2005 10:04 pm Reply with quote
St Pancras was martyred in 304AD at the age of 14. His head is still in the Lateran Basilica, but other bits of him were sent to England by Pope Vitalian so that the new English converts would have some relics to work with; this is why there are so many churches called after this rather obscure saint in this country.

He takes particular interest in cramps, children, headaches, oaths, treaties, false witness and perjury, and is the patron saint of train spotters except that I made that last one up.

28329. Tue Oct 25, 2005 10:14 pm Reply with quote
wonders if he will get away with this

Hmm Hmm - As any trainspotter will know, the original Intercity 125 high speed train in Britain was nicknamed the Flying Banana due to the yellow frontage which continued down the side of the power cars.

A later variant replaced the yellow livery with light grey and also featured an Intercity logo which was known as Roderick.

28331. Tue Oct 25, 2005 10:17 pm Reply with quote
Nobbler wrote:
wonders if he will get away with this

anyone who can get banana and trainspotter in the same link must be working pretty damn hard!

28332. Tue Oct 25, 2005 10:19 pm Reply with quote
I think that works OK, and it arose from something which would have to be characterised as an unforced error on my part (trying to be funny, always a mistake).

Nobbler to serve.

28373. Wed Oct 26, 2005 3:23 am Reply with quote
Nobbler wrote:
wonders if he will get away with this

Hmm Hmm - As any trainspotter will know, the original Intercity 125 high speed train in Britain was nicknamed the Flying Banana due to the yellow frontage which continued down the side of the power cars.

A later variant replaced the yellow livery with light grey and also featured an Intercity logo which was known as Roderick.

I had the pleasure of riding the first 125 out of Swansea, the first from Paddington was the big one, but the return journey was ignored, we had an entire compartment to ourselves.

QI Moderator
560526.  Wed May 27, 2009 5:25 pm Reply with quote

General QQ Round 6

28338. Tue Oct 25, 2005 10:31 pm Reply with quote
The current population of the Earth is around 6,450,000,000.

According to estimates approximately one fifth of all humans in the last six thousand years are currently alive.

28342. Tue Oct 25, 2005 10:37 pm Reply with quote
In An Essay on the Principle of Population (1798), Thomas Malthus predicted population would outrun food supply. This prediction was based on the idea that population increases at a geometric rate (i.e. 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, 64, 128, etc.) whereas the food supply grows at an arithmetic rate (i.e. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, etc.) Malthus favoured "moral restraint" (ie sexual abstinence) as a check on population growth - but only for the lower classes.

Lucy Morales
28347. Tue Oct 25, 2005 11:49 pm Reply with quote
Sexually active teens are less likely to be happy, more likely to be depressed, and more likely to attempt suicide. Teenage girls who are sexually active are three times more likely to be depressed and three times more likely to attempt suicide than girls who are not active. Teenage boys who are sexually active are more than twice as likely to be depressed and are almost ten times more likely to attempt suicide than boys who are not active.

28350. Wed Oct 26, 2005 12:01 am Reply with quote
The word 'teenager' is unattested before 1941, although 'teener' was used in America as early as 1894. 'Teen' as an adjective (eg 'teen idol') is from 1951. (according to Etymonline)

Incidentally, you could take the statistics quoted as evidence either that sex makes teenagers depressed or that depression makes teenagers have sex, presumably in order to cheer themselves up - although it may be that there is other evidence which favours one of these conclusions over the other for all I know.

Or, of course, that both sex and depression are caused by something else, such as the music of Kurt Cobain.

28359. Wed Oct 26, 2005 1:03 am Reply with quote
Kurt Cobain's best known song, Smells Like Teen Spirit, was eventually awarded "anthem-of-a-generation" status by the music media.

28386. Wed Oct 26, 2005 9:19 am Reply with quote
The tune that we know as "God Save the Queen" has been used as the National Anthem of Denmark, Russia, Sweden, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, and (unofficially) Germany.

Often credited to Henry Carey, this extremely ponderous dirge is thought to be an old folk tune. It was the first national anthem, and holds the record for the longest performance of a national anthem in a formal setting: on 9th Feb 1909 King Edward VII’s train arrived at Rathenau station in Brandenburg while he was on a visit to Germany. He held the honorary rank of Field-Marshal in the German army, and it took him so long to get into the uniform that the waiting band had to play the national anthem seventeen times.

28393. Wed Oct 26, 2005 10:17 am Reply with quote
The Grand National is one of only 10 sports events which must be available to be shown on free to air terrestrial channels. the others are;

Olympic games
FIFA World cup finals
FA cup final
Scottish cup final (applies to Scotland only)
Epsom Derby
Wimbledon finals
European football championships
Rugby League Challenge cup final
Rugby Union World cup final

This is regulated by the ITC Code on Sports and other listed events.

28399. Wed Oct 26, 2005 12:11 pm Reply with quote
Tranmere Rovers have square corner flags, while on the other side of the Mersey Liverpool and Everton have triangular ones. The reason is that only teams who have won the FA Cup are allowed to use the triangular design.

And a little bit of Bonus footy trivia. Which is the closest league football ground to the River Mersey?

A. Surprisingly enough it's Stockport County's Edgely Park.

Lucy Morales
28478. Wed Oct 26, 2005 10:25 pm Reply with quote
A plaice, a large European flounder, can lie on a checkerboard and reproduce on its upper surface the same pattern of squares, for camouflage.

28479. Wed Oct 26, 2005 10:35 pm Reply with quote
During the 18th century, the term Triangular trade was used to describe the trade between Europe, the west coast of Africa and the Caribbean.

Ships from Europe would sail to the west African coast to buy slaves. From here they would go to the Caribbean to trade slaves for agricultural products such as cane sugar.

The cane sugar would then be distilled into rum which was used to purchase slaves in west Africa. The ships would then sail on to trade the slaves in the Caribbean and the cycle would go on.

Any slaves that were not traded in the Caribbean would be taken to the Amerian deep south and traded for cotton on the platations. The cotton was sold to the textile mills in Britain and contributed heavily to the start of the industrial revolution.

Last edited by Nobbler on Wed Oct 26, 2005 10:42 pm; edited 1 time in total

28480. Wed Oct 26, 2005 10:40 pm Reply with quote
OK, two balls. Lucy, please edit your post so that it's in red, Nobbler put yours in blue. Next player, follow the colour of the shot you are returning.

Carry on.

28481. Wed Oct 26, 2005 10:47 pm Reply with quote
The zebra's black-and-white stripes are, on the face of it, counterproductive if he's grazing open grassland hoping not to be spotted by a lion. Possible explanations include:

1) the stripes make the herd merge into one from the lion's POV, so it's more difficult for her to pick out one individual to chase
2) the stripes make it more difficult for the lion to judge distance when leaping (like when you're trying to slash a Bridget Riley painting)
3) the stripes assist in thermoregulation in some unspecified way

but the theory that's getting the attention is that stripes repel the tsetse fly. This is the only one which has been tested experimentally, by putting up dummies soaked in essence of zebra but without stripes, and counting the number of flies which land on them. The pattern the flies like least seems to be horizontal stripes, and this is just the pattern the zebra has where it needs the protection the most (the belly and legs and also the neck when it's grazing - ie when the head is down).

So the stripes are, probably, nothing to do with camouflage at all. Why the tsetse don't like stripes is another question.

I should add that Gray, who is a zoologist in the sense that he has worked in a zoo, doesn't buy this idea.

28482. Wed Oct 26, 2005 11:01 pm Reply with quote
The largest slave trading state in North America was Rhode Island, in New England, which transported more slaves than any of the other 13 American colonies - north or south. It competed against European powers in the trade. Slave trader John Brown of Rhode Island was one of the brothers who founded the Ivy League university in Providence that bears their name.

Lucy Morales
28483. Wed Oct 26, 2005 11:09 pm Reply with quote
Plains zebras establish harmonious harems. Harem masters have exclusive mating rights with up to six mares. Zebra harems are so stable that the mares remain associated with each other for life. Their foals have the added protection from the family stallion's readiness to defend his wives and offspring against all threats to their survival.
And from the Knock Knock setction
Q. What's balck and white and eats like a horse?
A. A Zebra :-S

Lucy Morales
28484. Wed Oct 26, 2005 11:14 pm Reply with quote
Poison ivy is not really poisonous. It contains highly allergenic oil called urushoil. Coming in contact with it causes contact dermatitis (itchy, painful skin). The oil travels well in smoke and can cause serious medical problems if it gets in the throat and lungs. Also worth noting, poison oak is not oak and poison ivy is not ivy. Both are members of the cashew family (Anacardiaceae).

28497. Thu Oct 27, 2005 4:36 am Reply with quote
HEDERA HELIX ZEBRA Stout stems hold thick textured glaucous green cupped leaves liberally streaked with cream. Although a bit reluctant to self-branch, this ivy is still a dramatic cascading very variegated choice for a hanging basket indoors; furthermore, this dramatic heavily textured showoff has been quite winter tolerant outdoors for us for the last dozen years, being the only clone with this much white on the leaf surface not seriously affected by winter burn.

Yay - back down to one ball again!

28508. Thu Oct 27, 2005 9:13 am Reply with quote
Roman Snails, or Helix pomatia Linnaeus live in vineyards and hedges. Although they eat a large amount of vegetation, they are not considered a pest because of dwindling numbers, mainly due to eating them.

Indeed the Roman snail is a protected species in some parts of Europe.

Like all snails, they are hermaphrodites, they usually live for around 5 years although the oldest recorded is around 30 years


28521. Thu Oct 27, 2005 10:25 am Reply with quote
(Aside: we'll figure out the scoring when the rally ends, but Jenny's on a bonus)

Lucy Morales
28525. Thu Oct 27, 2005 11:10 am Reply with quote
Scientists examining frogs have discovered that the number of hermaphrodite frogs has greatly increased with the use of DDT and other organochlorine pesticides. These scientists think that the pesticides are either mimicking or blocking testosterone or estrogen, causing the frogs to grow reproductive organs for both sexes. Unfortunately, these changes are causing frog populations to die out in many areas.

Is this good enough for a win!?!
If 'yes', then I think Jenny should kick off the next round for such cunning ball consolidation.

Last edited by Lucy Morales on Thu Oct 27, 2005 11:12 am; edited 1 time in total

28526. Thu Oct 27, 2005 11:12 am Reply with quote
On the line, I'd say. Anyone see chalk?

28528. Thu Oct 27, 2005 11:24 am Reply with quote
without sources, I think we need to call for the third umpire

Lucy Morales
28529. Thu Oct 27, 2005 12:01 pm Reply with quote
laidbacklazyman wrote:
without sources, I think we need to call for the third umpire


28599. Thu Oct 27, 2005 11:50 pm Reply with quote
It's OK - Lucy can kick off the next one. I'll just revel in general smugness :-)

QI Moderator
560529.  Wed May 27, 2009 5:28 pm Reply with quote

General QQ Round 7

Lucy Morales
28625. Fri Oct 28, 2005 10:04 am Reply with quote
In Hinduism, Ardhanari or Ardhanareshvara, is an androgynous deity composed of Shiva and his consort Shakti, representing the synthesis of masculine and feminine energies. The Ardhanari form also illustrates how the female principle of God, Shakti is inseperable from the male principle of God, Shiva. Ardhanari in iconography is depicted as half-male and half-female, split down the middle. The best sculptural depictions of Shiva as ardhanari are to be seen in the sensuous Chola bronzes and the sculptures at Ellora and Elephanta.

Image for illustration purposes only.

28640. Fri Oct 28, 2005 1:07 pm Reply with quote
The term "tree hugger" used to describe environmentalists is thought to have originated from the Chipko movement who were aginst commercial logging in India.

The movement had many prominant members, mainly women, one os which was writer and activist Dr Vandana Shiva

Lucy Morales
28644. Fri Oct 28, 2005 1:16 pm Reply with quote
Papua New Guinea is home to several types of kangaroos that live in the top layers of trees. The animals have strong arms and non-slip feet to help them climb.

28659. Fri Oct 28, 2005 3:20 pm Reply with quote
A kangaroo is a marsupial mammal. It is a macropod which means "big foot".

A male kangaroo is called a boomer
A female kangaroo is called a flyer
A baby kangaroo is called a joey

28688. Fri Oct 28, 2005 5:50 pm Reply with quote
One of the very few contributions made by Rolf Harris to anyone anywhere was the writing of one of Australia's few Christmas songs - Six White Boomers. It was written in 1960 and was fairly popular for the next twenty years or so, after which it seemed to fall out of favour. It's hardly heard at all these days.

Here are the lyrics.

Quaint Idiot
28691. Fri Oct 28, 2005 6:03 pm Reply with quote
(aside: This song was on an album I was given by my uncle when I was a child. I couldn't help thinking of it (as hard as I tried) as soon as I read 'boomer' in Jenny's post.)

28693. Fri Oct 28, 2005 6:25 pm Reply with quote
non-evergreen and non-Christmas shrubs and trees include:

* Flowering Dogwood
* Black Alder (Winterberry)
* Inkberry
* Sea Lavender
* Mountain Laurel
* Great Rhododendron

28697. Fri Oct 28, 2005 7:17 pm Reply with quote
Mount Everest is generally considered to be the tallest mountain on Earth. However, this is only because mountains are measured from sea level. If they were measured from their bases, Mauna Kea is technically the tallest mountain.

However, Mauna Kea's mass is nothing compared to that of Mauna Loa, so even though Mauna Kea is about 350 ft taller than Mauna Loa, Mauna Loa is considered the tallest mountain on Earth (56,000 ft altogether, compared to Mount Everest - 29,035 ft).

Lucy Morales
28699. Fri Oct 28, 2005 9:52 pm Reply with quote
The largest volcano known isn't on Earth, but on Mars: Olympus Mons is 370 miles wide and 79,000 feet high, nearly three times higher than Mount Everest.

28701. Fri Oct 28, 2005 10:48 pm Reply with quote
Mars's moons are shaped roughly like potatoes.

28711. Sat Oct 29, 2005 3:33 am Reply with quote
Potatoes and tomatoes are both members of the same family of plants as deadly nightshade.

28721. Sat Oct 29, 2005 9:47 am Reply with quote
The mature Indian Nightshade berries or Solanum khasianum contain glycoalkaloid and solasodine, which is widely used for synthesis of antinflammatory, anabolic and antifertility drugs



28723. Sat Oct 29, 2005 10:37 am Reply with quote
95% of restaurants which we might call "Indian" are actually run by Bangladeshis.

The curry boom started in the UK after the WWII with the first Bangladeshi immigrants who often worked their passage in ships' gallies, then started basic curry houses here to cater for their communities.

28725. Sat Oct 29, 2005 11:12 am Reply with quote
The term "curry favour" relates to a medieval French association of chestnut-coloured horses with treachery; the expression "he's grooming the chestnut horse" may have sounded like a euphemism for a bizarre and indecent activity but actually meant "he's being hypocritical".

Curry-comb: c.1290, "to rub down a horse," from Anglo-Fr. curreier "to curry-comb a horse," from O.Fr. correier "put in order, prepare, curry," from con- intens. prefix + reier "arrange," from a Gmc. source. The surviving sense of curry favor is c.1510, altered by folk etymology from curry favel (c.1400) from O.Fr. correier fauvel "to be false, hypocritical," lit. "to curry the chestnut ('fawn-colored') horse," which in medieval Fr. allegories was a symbol of cunning and deceit.

Curry: "spice," 1681, from Tamil kari "sauce, relish for rice."


28730. Sat Oct 29, 2005 11:36 am Reply with quote
LaidBackLazyMan has pointed out that he has already won this game, so let's take it that eggshaped took a quick throw-in (? mixed metaphor) and we're on to the next game with LBLM 1 game to the good.

28734. Sat Oct 29, 2005 12:32 pm Reply with quote
Is there a mininum number of houses to go round? The game could theoretically be won on the server's second shot.

28735. Sat Oct 29, 2005 12:36 pm Reply with quote
True. At least 4 shots, say?

Lucy Morales
28775. Sat Oct 29, 2005 7:11 pm Reply with quote
Flash wrote:
True. At least 4 shots, say?

I would have thought 10 to be a better target, as that fills a page nicely and gives the players a better opportunity to get further a field. But will go with the majority - just happy to be playing :-)

28788. Sat Oct 29, 2005 8:52 pm Reply with quote
Let's see how it goes.

29003. Mon Oct 31, 2005 11:09 am Reply with quote
Point of order here but Britains first curry house was actually opened in 1926, pre dating WWII by quite a few years

29006. Mon Oct 31, 2005 11:42 am Reply with quote
According to Wikipedia it was earlier than that LBLM

The BBC reckons the year to be 1773

29013. Mon Oct 31, 2005 1:15 pm Reply with quote
Point of order here but Britains first curry house was actually opened in 1926, pre dating WWII by quite a few years

Maybe I should have made the post a bit more clear. I was claiming that the "curry boom" was post WWII, not that there were no curry houses prior to the war.

Here is my source

As far as the first curry house (the hindustani as mentioned by Nobbler above) this source (observer) has its date of opening as 1809:,9950,711834,00.html

This government website agrees:

As does the Telegraph:

That's not to say that the date is correct. Just a conflicting source.

However, it's good to see that people are not taking posts for granted and are checking facts. Here's a final story which I am unable to verify, maybe someone can come up with a confirmation/refutement.

The origins of lager-drinking with Indian food are mysterious.

Namita Panjabi has been told that in the early days of Veeraswamy in London's West End, which was founded in 1927, the King of Denmark came whenever he was in the country. Frustrated at not being able to drink Carlsberg - which wasn't then available here - he shipped over a barrel, so that when he came to eat it would be available for him. And so began a great, or not so great, tradition.,9950,711834,00.html

Sounds unlikely, don't y' think?

29020. Mon Oct 31, 2005 1:41 pm Reply with quote
I suppose if I had thought about it.

Sake Dean Mahomet was born in 1759. The BBC source has him opening the restaurant when he was 14. 1809 sounds more credible when you consider he was 50 according to eggshapeds source.

The thing I find QI is that he was appointed Shampooing Surgeon to both George IV and William IV. Nice work if you can get it.

29118. Mon Oct 31, 2005 10:34 pm Reply with quote
Some forms of artheritis and other degenerative joint conditions are aggrevated by a build up of acids in the body, most chemical drugs are acidic. Acidic sweets and sweeteners include all candy, honey, maple syrup, saccharin, sugar, and most alcoholic beverages are acidic, including beer, sake, vodka, whiskey, and some wines will make any condition worse.

Western drug treatment, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) such as aspirin and Ibuprofin treat the symptoms of joint pain and degenerative joint conditions, however, they do not slow the progression of the disease. In fact, long-term use of NSAID's can cause further joint damage (decrease bone repair, increase micro-fractures) and accelerate the progression of osteoarthritis by inhibiting synthesis of proteoglycans.

Can I win now please?

29124. Mon Oct 31, 2005 11:40 pm Reply with quote
I think you just won the previous game again, didn't you?

I'm afraid this may be getting a bit random. Let's check with Natalie.


29128. Tue Nov 01, 2005 12:03 am Reply with quote
Definitely Flash.

Glad you mastered the lingo. Flash wins.

29171. Tue Nov 01, 2005 1:36 pm Reply with quote
LBLM, does that mean that all the old dears who suck boiled sweets are actually doing themselves physical harm?!

HA HA Love it!

29177. Tue Nov 01, 2005 2:08 pm Reply with quote
It wasn't easy trying to link Sake with the original winning link word I can tell you. Sometimes I amaze even myself with the stuff I find.

QI Moderator
560532.  Wed May 27, 2009 5:31 pm Reply with quote

General QQ Round 8

29159. Tue Nov 01, 2005 11:00 am Reply with quote
The Dollar, recognised as the currency of America is of Germanic origin, used in Germany until 1873 it had a value of 3 marks.

Colonists in America used it in reference to Spanish peices of eight , Congress adopted the dollar in 1785 when U.S currency was established under Thomas Jefferson because the term was widely used and, possibley, more importantly not Brittish. Even though the dollar was adopted in 1785 the currency didn't go into circulation until 9 years later.

Incidentally the only decimal currency used today is in Vietnam and Sudan, all of the others are centimal with the exception of Iraq, Oman, Tunisia and Kuwait (millenial) and Mauritania which has a heptal currency

29170. Tue Nov 01, 2005 1:34 pm Reply with quote
The UK went decimal not in 1971, but in 1849.

...and it was true decimal as well.

The need for a decimal currency system was discussed in Parliament in the early nineteenth century and as far back as 1849 a florin was introduced - inscribed 'one tenth of a pound' with the intention that it should be the first step towards the adoption of a decimal system.

29188. Tue Nov 01, 2005 3:16 pm Reply with quote
On July 1 1999 The Queen presented a mace to the Scottish Parliament which was accepted by the then first minister of Scotland the late Donald Dewar, inscribed on the mace were the words 'Wisdom. Justice. Compassion. Integrity'

29212. Tue Nov 01, 2005 6:00 pm Reply with quote
Mace is the outer coat of the nutmeg, with a subtly different flavour.

Botanically known as Myristica fragrans, the nutmeg tree originates in Banda, the largest of the Molucca spice islands of Indonesia. The English word nutmeg comes from the latin nux, meaning nut, and muscat, meaning musky.

In the first century A.D., Roman author Pliny speaks of a tree bearing nuts with two flavors. Emperor Henry VI had the streets of Rome fumigated with nutmegs before his coronation. In the the sixth century, nutmegs were brought by Arab merchants to Constantinople.

In the fourteenth century, half a kilogram of nutmeg cost as much as three sheep or a cow. The Dutch waged a bloody war, including the massacre and enslavement of the inhabitants of the island of Banda, just to control nutmeg production in the East Indies.

In 1760, the price of nutmeg in London was 85-90 shillings per pound, a price kept artificially high by the Dutch voluntarily burning full warehouses of nutmegs in Amsterdam.

29246. Tue Nov 01, 2005 10:16 pm Reply with quote
Resists the initial urge to do the if Constantinople is the original name of Istanbul then what was the original name for Iceland? gag instead shares with you all the Constantinople was indeed the most influential city in the Eastern Roman Empire and then the Byzantine Empire for almost a millenium.

The hippodrome became over time increasingly a place of political significance. It was where (as a shadow of the popular elections of old Rome) the people by acclamation showed their approval of a new emperor; and also where they openly criticised the government, or clamoured for the removal of unpopular ministers. In the time of Justinian, public order in Constantinople became a critical political issue. The entire late Roman and early Byzantine period was one where Christianity was resolving fundamental questions of identity, and the dispute between the orthodox and the monophysites became the cause of serious disorder, expressed through allegiance to the horse-racing parties of the Blues and the Greens, and in the form of a major rebellion in the capital of 532 AD, known as the "Nika" riots (from the battle-cry of "Victory!" of those involved).src wikipedia

29375. Thu Nov 03, 2005 2:06 am Reply with quote
In Greek art, a Nike is a winged statue representing Nike, the goddess of victory. She is represented in a short tunic, with wings, and usually carries a palm. She is also represented writing on a shield, and frequently sacrificing a bull.

29381. Thu Nov 03, 2005 2:11 am Reply with quote
The word for a sacrifice of 100 bulls is a hecatomb.

29382. Thu Nov 03, 2005 2:16 am Reply with quote
Human sacrifice was practiced all over the ancient world.

Most sacrificial victims were slaughtered under the knife; some were burned; some were drowned; some were buried alive, some were pushed down the stairs of a massive pyramid temple.

An inscription discovered near ancient Babylon contained an offer of Nebuchadnezzer allowing his son to be burned to death to assure his nation's protection.

29388. Thu Nov 03, 2005 10:32 am Reply with quote
Those biblical names for outsized bottles of Champagne seem to date from the 1940s, except for Jeroboam:
according to the Champagne expert François Bonal, winemakers in Bordeaux had been using the name Jeroboam for the four-bottle size since 1725. (It's presumed they selected Jeroboam, the biblical founder of Israel, who ruled from 931-910 BC because he is referred to as "a man of great worth," as were the larger size bottles).Bonal also explains that a Champenois poet of the middle ages, Eugene Destuche, mentioned several of these names in his poetry.

The Champenois adopted the Jeroboam and followed suit with larger format bottles developed in the 1940s, continuing the practice of selecting biblical kings and patriarchs.

The Nebuchadnezzer is the biggest, a 20-bottle bottle.

Lucy Morales
29407. Thu Nov 03, 2005 2:42 pm Reply with quote
Table tennis was originally played with balls made from champagne corks and paddles made from cigar-box lids. It was created in the 1880s by James Gibb, a British engineer who wanted an invigorating game he could play indoors when it was raining. Named "Gossima," the game was first marketed with celluloid balls, which replaced Gibb's corks. After the equipment manufacturer renamed the game "Ping-Pong" in 1901, it became a hot seller.

29413. Thu Nov 03, 2005 3:36 pm Reply with quote
Cork is the outer bark of the cork oak tree Quercus suber L, which is native to the west Mediterranean basin. If performed properly, the stripping of cork from cork oaks is nondestructive to the trees, making cork a renewable resource.

Cork consists of 14-sided, vacuous polyhedral cells (nonliving) arranged in a hexagonal pattern. The cells are filled with atmospheric gas (minus carbon dioxide). The cork cells are composed mainly of suberin, a complex compound of fatty acids and organic alcohols, impermeable to gases and liquids and resistant to fire and insects. These factors contribute to the evolutionary benefit of cork bark to the cork oak tree.

The gaseous cells make cork very low-density. Therefore cork is lightweight and buoyant, and useful in buoys, lifejackets, etc.

Stress on a chunk of cork causes only local compression of trapped gases, and not overall shape deformation. This property and cork's impermeability are the reasons for its use in the wine industry.

Cork is a very poor thermal/acoustic conductor. These properties make it useful in the construction industry. Cork flooring is one prominent application of cork's low acoustic conductivity.

Sacred Lion
29506. Fri Nov 04, 2005 7:06 pm Reply with quote
Aerogel is the lightest and lowest-density solid known to exist. In addition to being ultra-lightweight, it is also a superinsulator and has extremely low accoustic conductivity

It is typically 50-99.5% air, yet can hold (theoretically) 500 to 4,000 times its weight in applied force. Aerogel can have surface areas ranging from 250 to 3,000 square meters per gram, meaning that a cubic inch (2.5 cm x 2.5 cm x 2.5 cm) of aerogel flattened-out (again theoretically) would have more surface area than an entire football field!

Silica aerogel is transparent. It appears blue for the same reason that the sky appears blue: selective scattering of light waves off of particles smaller than the wavelengths of the reflected light.

29516. Fri Nov 04, 2005 9:27 pm Reply with quote
Dang, that's very quite interesting, the aerogel thing.

The sky may appear blue but actually it isn't. It's violet. The sky appears blue because the shorter wavelengths (blue is shorter than red) are what get mainly reflected at us. Since violet light has a shorter wavelength than blue, the sky should be violet, but it so hppens that our eyes are less capable of registering that colour. Or so they claim.

29589. Sat Nov 05, 2005 3:31 pm Reply with quote
Violets are small perennial plants often with large heart-shaped leaves, which flower profusely in spring. The genus includes the Sweet Violet (Viola odorata, the common violet of the English countryside) and Dog Violet, and many other species whose common name includes the word "violet".
The young leaves are edible raw or cooked as a somewhat bland leaf vegetable. They are rich in vitamins A and C. Flowers, leaves and roots are used for medical purposes. The plants are used as food plants by the larvae of some Lepidoptera species including Lesser Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing.

29594. Sat Nov 05, 2005 4:02 pm Reply with quote
On the island of Madagascar (and only there) exists a mysterious animal called a fossa, related to the mongoose. Until recently, scientists knew very little about this endangered species, because the fossa is very good at hiding itself.

American scientist Luke Dollar carried out research on it there. "Imagine a short, stocky mountain lion," Dollar said. The animal "has many cat-like qualities, including claws and a set of fearsome teeth. It has a nose like a dog, a long tail it uses like a trapeze artists' pole, and the ability to 'fly' through trees like a squirrel."

Dollar's research shows that the fossa hunts everything from lemurs and mice to wild pigs. It is not overly dangerous to people.

Only 3000 fossa remain. They are endangered because only 8 percent of Madagascar's forest remains today. In fact, many of Madagascar's animals have already gone extinct since people first came to the island 2,000 years ago.

One of those animals may have been a larger type of fossa. Dollar has found bones and other remains of a fossa-like animal the size of a tiger. It would have weighed more than 225 pounds (100 kilograms)! He said it "could definitely have taken people."

And I think that may be a winning shot, unless you think the dog link is a bit tenuous! If so, please ignore this post, as I'm about to go out for the day and won't see the forum again until this evening. If somebody else wants to start another match, that's fine by me.

QI Moderator
560533.  Wed May 27, 2009 5:34 pm Reply with quote

General QQ Round 9

29600. Sat Nov 05, 2005 7:07 pm Reply with quote
I'll start off:
Ganymede is the only moon in the Solar system that projects a magnetic field or magnetosphere, like Earth. This was discovered by the NASA Galileo probe during its first flyby. Scientists believe this could be due to a magnetic core or even a high concentration of salt in liquid water underneath the crust

Last edited by Kevino7 on Sun Nov 06, 2005 2:03 pm; edited 2 times in total

29608. Sat Nov 05, 2005 11:20 pm Reply with quote
Galileo was wrong about about the proof he offered for his proposition that the Earth revolves on its own axis. He pointed out that the Mediterranean is more tidal than the Red Sea, and attributed this to the water being sloshed about by the Earth's spin (which, he said, acted more strongly on the Med because it's aligned East-West). This argument was refuted by the eye-witness testimony of seafarers, who testified that there were two tides a day, not one as Galileo had assumed. Galileo refused to believe them.

29629. Sun Nov 06, 2005 4:44 am Reply with quote
Most people believe (and some Bible translations say) that Moses led the Israelites over the Red Sea after parting the waters.

The problem is that the biblical account never refers to the Red Sea by name. In fact, nowhere in the entire Old Testament Hebrew text is the body of water associated with the exodus ever called the "Red Sea." Instead in the Hebrew text the reference is to the yam suph. The word yam in Hebrew is the ordinary word for "sea," although in Hebrew it is used for any large body of water whether fresh or salt. The word suph is the word for "reeds" or "rushes," the word used in Ex. 2:3, 5 to describe where Moses' basket was placed in the Nile. So, the biblical reference throughout the Old Testament is to the "sea of reeds" (e.g., Num 14:25, Deut 1:40, Josh 4:23, Psa 106:7. etc.).

Now the simple fact is, we do not know exactly what body of water is referenced by yam suph in Scripture, which is the origin of much of the debate. The translation "Red Sea" is simply a traditional translation introduced into English by the King James Version through the second century BC Greek Septuagint and the later Latin Vulgate. It then became a traditional translation of the Hebrew terms. However, many modern translations either translate yam suph as "Sea of Reeds" or use the traditional translation and add a footnote for the Hebrew meaning.

29633. Sun Nov 06, 2005 5:13 am Reply with quote
The Septuagint is the name given to the Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible (known to Jews as the Torah and to Christians as the Old Testament) produced in Alexandria between the third and first centuries BC.

According to legend it was written by 72 Jewish scholars (six from each of the 12 tribes of Israel) so the name Septuagint is actually a misnomer, deriving as it does from 'septuaginta', the Latin for 70.

In a later version of the legend, relayed by the great Philo of Alexandria (about whom by a strange coincidence I had a very long conversation with an expert on the subject in the QI Club this evening) although the 72 scholars were kept in separate rooms, they each produced an identical translation in 72 days.

29644. Sun Nov 06, 2005 9:43 am Reply with quote
The Septuagint was translated into English by Sir Lancelot C.L. Brenton, whose father Sir Jahleel Brenton was created a Baronet in December 1812 for his successful action in the Bay of Naples. The family crest is now used as the crest for HMS Spartan.

29692. Sun Nov 06, 2005 5:13 pm Reply with quote
Vesuvius faces the Bay of Naples. Vesuvius is a composite volcano, made up of alternate layers of ash and lava. Composite volcanoes normally have two different kinds of eruptions. One kind produces mostly ash and cinders. The other kind produces lava. In Vesuvius these two types of eruption have not been seen to happen together.

The eruption that buried Pompeii was ash, but the 1944 eruption (the last time Vesuvius erupted, although it was quite active in the 1930s) was lava.

29693. Sun Nov 06, 2005 5:29 pm Reply with quote
The volcano Mt. Etna, was believed to be the foundry of Roman smith god Vulcan. He was lame after his angered Jupiter, who broke Vulcan's legs. As a result, Sicily had many temples to Vulcan to protect the inhabitants from eruptions.[/b]

29697. Sun Nov 06, 2005 5:42 pm Reply with quote
Inhabitants is a puzzle game created by S+F Software, based loosely on the concepts from SameGame. Inhabitants is available on Windows and Sega Dreamcast.

Unlike SameGame, adjoining tiles may only be cleared. This means that only a total of up to five blocks can be cleared at a time.

29702. Sun Nov 06, 2005 5:54 pm Reply with quote
The Sega Dreamcast was sega's last console and the first console to include internet gaming. Poor sales and a lack of third party companies (including EA) supplying games however made the console a large failure forcing Sega to become a game-only company. - plus my knowlegde on gaming[/b]

29705. Sun Nov 06, 2005 6:01 pm Reply with quote
Various Video Games include a famous Final Fantasy Series, in which the game FF: Tactics Advance has a powerful creature called Gilgamesh. Which just happens to be the name of a crater on Ganymede.

29711. Sun Nov 06, 2005 6:09 pm Reply with quote
Full Circle is a documentary series by Michael Palin in which he goes around the world. This followed the series Around the World in 80 days, a series inspired by the famous novel.

Last edited by Kevino7 on Sun Nov 06, 2005 6:12 pm; edited 1 time in total

29712. Sun Nov 06, 2005 6:09 pm Reply with quote
Erm...have you won, thetwig?

The umpire seems to have gorn orf for a sherry or something...

Last edited by JumpingJack on Mon Nov 07, 2005 12:42 am; edited 1 time in total

29713. Sun Nov 06, 2005 6:12 pm Reply with quote
JumpingJack wrote:
Erm...have you won, thetwig?

The umpire seems to have gorf orf for a sherry or something...

Yep, he's won. Off to Round 10 then.

29717. Sun Nov 06, 2005 6:31 pm Reply with quote
I believe that I 'ave, ya ol' matey.

YAY! I will celebrate:

I have won the Qing
Qong Round, Champagne all around,

29791. Mon Nov 07, 2005 12:42 am Reply with quote
I think you have to initiate the thread, twigster.

29910. Mon Nov 07, 2005 6:43 pm Reply with quote

Let me think then.

*Thinks Quickly*

QI Moderator
560536.  Wed May 27, 2009 5:40 pm Reply with quote

General QQ Round 10

30256. Wed Nov 09, 2005 10:10 am Reply with quote
Inspired by this coming weeks QI on bbc2, I'd like to serve with Joe Kittinger.

Joe was an avid aviator and began flying fixed wing aircraft in 1949, Gas balloons in 1955, an Hot air balloons in 1964.

Jeremy Clarkson mentioned his 62 mile parachute jump on the show, this is of course a record in itself but during that jump two other records were broken: The longest freefall at 4 mins 36 secs and he is also the fastest unpropelled man alive reaching speeds of 714mph bearing in mind at the altitude he jumped speed of sound is only +629mph that is some speed he was travelling.

He also retired the then covetted Gordon Bennet trophy in 1985 after his third consecutive victory.

He is still flying today in Florida as a Barnstormer a veteran from the Vietnam war having flown 483 missions with a stay at the Hanoi Hilton to go with it.

Surely a very interesting man

30281. Wed Nov 09, 2005 3:40 pm Reply with quote
James Gordon Bennett Jr, after whom the Gordon Bennett trophy was named after he inaugurated his International balloon race from the Tuileries Gardens in Paris in 1906, was the son of the confusingly named James Gordon Bennett who published the first issue of the New York Herald in May 1835, allegedly the first American newspaper to use telegraphy extensively in reporting.

James Gordon Bennett Jr took over the management of the New York Herald from his father and was known as a progressive force in newspaper publishing. He even invited Marconi over to the US so that his new "wireless" invention would enable him to be able to receive reports of the Sandy Hook yacht races before other newspapers who had to rely on normal telegraphy.

As well as being the youngest Commodore ever of the New York Yacht Club, and winner of the first trans-oceanic boat race in 1866, James Gordon Bennett Jr was also famous for sponsoring Henry Morton Stanley's expedition into Africa to find Livingstone. A keen sportsman, he provided funds to set up several trophy races in many different sports.

Opinion is divided whether and how this man gave rise to the term "Gordon Bennett" as an exclamation of surprise or disbelief. One suggestion relates to a scandal which ended his engagement to socialite Caroline May and is listed in the Guiness Book of Records as the "Greatest Engagement Faux Pas". According to this story, Bennett arrived late and drunk to a party at the May family's New York mansion, and urinated in the living room fireplace in full view of his hosts.

30304. Wed Nov 09, 2005 6:21 pm Reply with quote
The Phrase "Gordon Bennett" is the catchphrase, of a sort, of the computer Holly in the TV show Red Dwarf. Red Dwarf started in the 80s and ran for 8 series until the 1990s. Red Dwarf was famous for using made-up insults such as "Smeg" and "Goit", with one of the famous lines being: "What the smegging smeg has the smegger smegging done? He's smegging killed me!"

(I feel Fridgey facts coming up)

30334. Wed Nov 09, 2005 11:15 pm Reply with quote
On Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of The Were-Rabbit, instead of Smeg there was Smug written on the front of the fridge..
That isn't really a fact so ignore that and carry on..

30422. Thu Nov 10, 2005 2:32 pm Reply with quote
NASA Astronomers have stumbled onto a previously unknown star in Earth's stellar neighborhood, a red dwarf that appears to be the third-closest star system to our own. The dim red dwarf shines about 300,000 times fainter than the Sun. It's faintness has veiled it from astronomers until now, researchers said.

The astronomers estimate the newly discovered star to sit about 7.8 light years from Earth towards the constellation Aries. The closest star to Earth is Alpha Centauri, which is actually a set of triplets burning brightly about four light years away. Barnard's Star, the next-nearest neighbor is a slightly further hop at about six light years form Earth. One light year is about six trillion miles (9.5 trillion kilometers).

30431. Thu Nov 10, 2005 3:59 pm Reply with quote
Sir Joseph Norman Lockyer was an English astronomer at the end of the 19th century who worked on analysing spectra from the Sun measured by French scientist Pierre-Jules-César Janssen. Lockyer discovered a new yellow line at 587.49 nm which he recognised belonged to no known element at the time.

Lockyer predicted that this must be a completely new element and named it Helium, after Helios the greek sun god. At the time, Lockyer was generally regarded as being wholly mistaken and it was only later in 1895 that Sir William Ramsay was able to produce Helium in the lab and prove Lockyer's discovery.

Lockyer remained an important figure in the scientific establishment throughout his life and, in 1869, founded a publication for spreading new scientific ideas and encouraging debate. He called this publication "Nature", and it remains one of the most influential scientific periodicals to date.

30443. Thu Nov 10, 2005 4:27 pm Reply with quote
Janssen's Temptation

A Swedish classic that belongs to the smorgasbord. 10 servings


* 10 large potatoes - peeled and sliced thin
* 2 onion, peeled and sliced
* 20 anchovy fillets, drained and brine reserved
* 1 1/4 cups cream
* 2 tablespoons bread crumbs
* 2 tablespoons butter


1. Preheat the oven to 475 degrees (225 degrees C).
2. Place a layer of sliced potatoes onto the bottom of a large baking dish. Top the potatoes with a layer of sliced onions, and then a layer of anchovy fillets. Repeat layers up to the top of the dish, ending with a layer of potatoes on top. Drizzle about 2/3 of the cream over the dish, and the reserved liquid from the anchovies. Sprinkle the breadcrumbs over the top, and dot with pieces of butter.
3. Bake for 30 minutes on the middle rack of the oven. Add the remaining cream, and continue baking for another 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender.

30462. Thu Nov 10, 2005 6:52 pm Reply with quote
Anchovies, preserved by salting in brine, matured, then packed in oil, are an important food fish.

In Roman times, they were the base for the fermented fish sauce called garum.

They are a key ingredient in Worcestershire sauce.

Anchovies don't have a strong taste - that is due to the curing process. Fresh anchovies, known in Italy as alici, have a much softer and gentler flavour. In English-speaking countries, alici are sometimes called "white anchovies", but they're really just, er, anchovies.

Last edited by Gaazy on Sat Nov 12, 2005 7:25 pm; edited 1 time in total

30523. Fri Nov 11, 2005 5:43 am Reply with quote
The Worcestershire Regiment's official Regimental Colour is the brightest green worn by any regiment in the army.

30602. Fri Nov 11, 2005 6:31 pm Reply with quote
Paul Verlaine's poem Green (from his Romances sans Paroles) has no English references, geographical or cultural, and it's not known why he chose the English language for this particular title.

The only green things referred to in the poem are leaves, one of the many items from nature mentioned in the first line, most of which aren't particularly green, so even Vert would have been a puzzling title.

30666. Fri Nov 11, 2005 10:53 pm Reply with quote
Paul Verlaine spent two years in prison after a lovers' tiff with Rimbaud.

The two met in 1871 when Verlaine was a published poet aged 27 and Rimbaud a teenager who wrote him a fan letter and sent him some poems. Although Verlaine was married with a young son, he fell madly in love with Rimbaud and the two poets travelled together for a while. Verlaine helped Rimbaud become a literary celebrity in his own right in Paris.

However, when it became clear that Rimbaud was going to move on and leave Verlaine behind, the older poet could not stand the loss. A series of bitter fights ensued, and Verlaine ended up firing a gun at Rimbaud, injuring his wrist. Rimbaud pressed charges, sending Verlaine to prison for two years, before fleeing the world of literary fame in disgust.

30724. Sat Nov 12, 2005 4:49 am Reply with quote
Philosopher and founder of Utilitarianism Jeremy Bentham (1748-1832) was the designer of what is thought to be the first modern prison, the Panopticon. The idea of the design was to allow the authorities to monitor the activities of prisoners at all moments of the day, keeping the wings of the prison under constant surveillance from a central viewing post.

Approved for construction by Parliament in 1794, competing interests and worries about the cost meant that Bentham and his brother became disillusioned and were given compensation when the plan was shelved in 1813. Parliament revived the scheme, however, and in 1821 opened Millbank Penitentiary, which at the time was one of the largest prisons in the world, containing over three miles of passageways. The prison was closed in 1890 and demolished; the site is now occupied by Tate Britain.


30727. Sat Nov 12, 2005 5:01 am Reply with quote
Colonel John Paul Stapp was one of the pioneers in the "rocket sled" experiment designed to see how the body reacted to high speeds along with Joe Kittinger who joined the Airforce aged 21 and earned his "wings"with the 86th Fighter-Bomber Wing at Ramstein Air Force Base

30730. Sat Nov 12, 2005 5:19 am Reply with quote
Mutterings from the bleachers

I think that's a bit cheeky that one.

30731. Sat Nov 12, 2005 5:26 am Reply with quote

30736. Sat Nov 12, 2005 5:44 am Reply with quote
I think that was rather a clever shot, actually. Raised the dust, but inside the line I think.

30776. Sat Nov 12, 2005 12:26 pm Reply with quote
Entirely agree, Jenny. It was very neat.

dignified applause, murmurings of 'good shot sir' etc

On the other hand, if we get into semantic links, taking any word from any post linking it back to the first one, the games will be very short.

As ever, I was really enjoying the match and then suddenly it was over.

I think these general threads ought to have more of a 'knock up' feel to them, trying to keep the rallies going, rather than trying to finish them.

30819. Sat Nov 12, 2005 4:44 pm Reply with quote
Mornington Crescent.

30829. Sat Nov 12, 2005 5:32 pm Reply with quote
*giggles* =D

<riotous applause from studio audience>

30874. Sat Nov 12, 2005 9:32 pm Reply with quote
I do apologise for intimidating the line judge into that decision I'm afraid as soon as I saw the lob in the form of "wings" in a thread about a flying legend the only response was apply a little top spin and play for the drop volley.

I could have played the shot six posts earlier actually. Kittinger was a bit of a regular high flyer in ballons and the following the year of his jump , he went up to 81,500 feet with an astronmer and telescope, allowing them to observe outer space without the pollution* of the atmosphere I was just lulling you all into a false sense of security

I am, of course, quite proud of jumping on the chance given.

*pollution includes light and atmospheric distortions

30911. Sat Nov 12, 2005 11:25 pm Reply with quote
New balls, please!

Start another one, Andy, let's be having you.

General QQ Round 10 Discussion

30461. Thu Nov 10, 2005 6:44 pm Reply with quote
Matters arising:

In post 30304, we read:

Red Dwarf was famous for using made-up insults such as "Smeg" and "Goit"

Made-up they may have been, but I had assumed they were derived from
smegma and goitre respectively.

Right o. Carry on.

30469. Thu Nov 10, 2005 7:36 pm Reply with quote
Doug Naylor and Rob Grant have always denied any link between the word 'smeg' and 'smegma'.

But please continue... =D

30483. Thu Nov 10, 2005 9:01 pm Reply with quote
Hmmm. Well, it looks a bit like inventing an insult "antidisest" while denying a link with "antidisestablishmentarianism", but thanks all the same for the info.

31007. Sun Nov 13, 2005 3:05 pm Reply with quote
The word Goit derived from Git.

31014. Sun Nov 13, 2005 3:33 pm Reply with quote

I've known Rob Grant and Doug Naylor for 20 years and my rejoinder is 'well, they would say that, wouldn't they?'

31018. Sun Nov 13, 2005 3:54 pm Reply with quote
*giggles* =D

Well, I'm only going on what people have said on the Red Dwarf Webboard, where the question comes up occasionally. Having never met the gents, I bow to your superior knowledge. =)

31023. Sun Nov 13, 2005 4:49 pm Reply with quote
Anna wrote:
Doug Naylor and Rob Grant have always denied any link between the word 'smeg' and 'smegma'.

But please continue... =D

There is a clip that turns up on these out-take programmes from time to time of a Red Dwarf convention in America. Craig Charles and Chris Barrie are taking questions from the audience and a boy of about 10 gets up and asks 'what does smeg mean?". Much mirth and embarassment ensues.

31029. Sun Nov 13, 2005 5:22 pm Reply with quote
I've heard about it, but I don't have the dvds so I haven't seen it. =D

32087. Thu Nov 17, 2005 6:44 pm Reply with quote
Yeah, that's on one of the DVDs... I can't remember which one though...

QI Moderator
560538.  Wed May 27, 2009 5:46 pm Reply with quote

General QQ Round 11

30917. Sat Nov 12, 2005 11:46 pm Reply with quote
Here we go with a new and again trying to be topical.

Today saw the start of a new year in the City of London with the introduction of David Brewer as the Lord Mayor.

One of the first duties in his new role was to take part the procession of floats through the streets of London known as the Lord Mayors Parade he joins at his home for a year, the Mansion House and travels to the Royal Courts of Justice in a golden carraige for his investiture(sp?). It's a show he pays for himself along with all of his other duties throughout his one year in service. One benefit from the job that dates back to the signing of the Magna Carta, should he chose to he can tell the monarch of the day that London is a local city for local people so get orf moi larnd. He also has the choice to sit at the head of the table at functions in the City regardless of who attends so in effect in his own square mile of England he holds precedence over the monarch, a privilage he choses not to utilise. However when the monarch travels to the City she/he always asks his permission to enter and he meets him/her at the site of the temple bar at the start of Fleet Street (the old one was in St Pauls Churchyard)

So there we go with the serve, remember I've been practicing the drop volley, the googly, the wrong 'un and the step over dummy so a word of advise avoid the word dick, money and road. Good luck

30923. Sun Nov 13, 2005 12:06 am Reply with quote
Of the original 60 clauses in the Magna Carta signed by King John at Runnymede in 1215, only three are still in force.

The last three remaining clauses guarantee: (1) the freedom of the Church of England (9) the ancient freedoms of the City of London, the Cinque Ports and all other cities, towns, and ports (29) no imprisonment without fair trial.

One could argue that Clause 29, with the new terrorism measures in force, is hanging by a thread and that only two (rather vague) clauses remain.

s: SLO

30959. Sun Nov 13, 2005 2:53 am Reply with quote
Established by Royal Charter in 1155, the Cinque Ports were granted:
Exemption from tax and tallage, right of soc and sac, tol and team, blodwit and fledwit, pillory and tumbril, infrangentheof and outfrangentheof, mundbryce, waives and strays, flotsam and jetsam and ligan.

(Exemption from tax and tolls; self-government; permission to levy tolls, punish those who shed blood or flee justice, punish minor offences, detain and execute criminals both inside and outside the port's jurisdiction, and punish breaches of the peace; and possession of lost goods that remain unclaimed after a year, goods thrown overboard, and floating wreckage.)

The position of Lord Warden and Admiral of the Cinque Ports is the most ancient military honour available in England. There have been 158 of them, including Henry VIII before his succession, Pitt the Younger, the Duke of Wellington, Winston Churchill and the Queen Mum.

31012. Sun Nov 13, 2005 3:30 pm Reply with quote
When the Queen Mother visits Hastings tomorrow for the 700th anniversary of a Grand Charter to the Confederation of the Cinque Ports, she will also visit the Hastings Winkle Club. But she will be unable to join this famous club as membership, including Prince Philip, Churchill and Montgomery, is confined to males. However, she will be given a gold replica of a winkle, mounted on a brooch, as was the Queen , who as Princess Elizabeth, visited the club in 1951. Every member of the club has a winkle, which he is required to carry at all times, and , if he is without it, on being challenged with the cry of "winkle up",he has to pay a fine of sixpence.

s: Daily Telegraph

31017. Sun Nov 13, 2005 3:50 pm Reply with quote
Should a winkle get infected by the Microphallus fluke-worm (whose name comes from the greek for "tiny-penis"), it is manipulated into moving upwards in the water.

This manipulation makes the periwinkle more likely to be eaten by herring-gulls after which the Microphallus infects the bird, laying its eggs in the bird's feces to infect new periwinkles.

Examples of other Microphalli influencing organisms’ behaviour are Microphallus pseudopygmaeus, which chemically castrates a host snail and causes it to grow larger than normal, and Microphallus papillorobustus, which also causes its host, the lagoon sand shrimp, to swim upwards, making it more vulnerable to predation

Frederick The Monk
31027. Sun Nov 13, 2005 5:16 pm Reply with quote
The Dick Whittington story is an old one, told under other names throughout Europe, of a poor boy who sends a cat he had bought for a penny as his stake in a trading voyage; the captain sells it on his behalf for a fortune to a foreign king whose palace is overrun by rats. The hero devotes part of his windfall to charity, which may be why the legend attached in England since 16c. to Sir Richard Whittington (d.1423), three times Lord Mayor of London, who died childless and devoted large sums in his will to churches, almshouses, and St. Bartholomew's Hospital.

31031. Sun Nov 13, 2005 5:44 pm Reply with quote

A quite brilliant, if slightly premature winning stroke Fred.

Frederick The Monk
31033. Sun Nov 13, 2005 5:53 pm Reply with quote
Couldn't resist, sorry - it's been a very long night.

31040. Sun Nov 13, 2005 6:16 pm Reply with quote
JumpingJack wrote:
Of the original 60 clauses in the Magna Carta signed by King John at Runnymede in 1215, only three are still in force.

I'm not actually joining in with this game, but I have to say.....

Magna Carta? Signed? Surely not.

Frederick The Monk
31044. Sun Nov 13, 2005 6:43 pm Reply with quote
In fact, King John did sign the draft of the Charter that the negotiating parties hammered out at Runnymede on 15–18 June 1215, but the four suriving documents we now call Magna Carta are the formal documents drawn up by the King's writing office after the meeting which gain their legal identity from the Great Seal attached to them (rather than a signature).

John was a highly literate man, and the proud possessor of a large library. Some of the books the records show he read included: De Sacramentis Christianae Fidei by Hugh of St. Victor, Sentences by Peter Lombard, The Treatise of Origen, and a history of England—potentially Wace's Roman de Brut, based on Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia Regum Britanniae.

s:Warren, W.L. King John

31049. Sun Nov 13, 2005 7:03 pm Reply with quote
There is no mention of the Magna Carta in Shakespeare's King John. You probably knew that, but I don't care. ;)

Last edited by samivel on Mon Nov 14, 2005 1:56 pm; edited 1 time in total

Frederick The Monk
31155. Mon Nov 14, 2005 1:51 pm Reply with quote
In didn't know that actually - splendid. I must admit it's one of those plays I've never got round to reading. It looks like I should put that right.

Frederick The Monk
31172. Mon Nov 14, 2005 3:20 pm Reply with quote
I shall go and post this nugget on 'Brand New Information' if I may.

31255. Mon Nov 14, 2005 11:47 pm Reply with quote
Go ahead, Fred.

And it's your turn to serve.

Seconds out. Round Twelve.

ding ding

General QQ Round 11 Commentary

30961. Sun Nov 13, 2005 3:54 am Reply with quote
Magna Carta signed by King John at Runnymede in 1215 ... The last three remaining clauses guarantee: (1) the freedom of the Church of England...

but wasn't the Church of England established (i.e. 'made up') later than this, by Henry VIII ?

(I remember once being aghast that an intelligent American friend was active in this rather bespoke religion: like, where's my church Dude?)

31011. Sun Nov 13, 2005 3:24 pm Reply with quote

Eek. I feel your hot breath at my heels once more.

For once I have an authoritative reference to hand: The Strange Laws of Old England by Nigel Cawthorne (BCA, 2004).

It's quite a 'fun' book but has clearly been dligently and seriously researched to find the rare QI nuggets inside the miles of tedious legal verbiage.

The author quotes Clause 1 of Magna Carta in full. Here it is:

First, We have granted to God, and by this our present Charter have confirmed, for Us and our Heirs forever, that the Church of England shall be free, and shall have her whole rights and liberties inviolable. We have granted also, and given to all the Freemen of our Realm, for Us and our Heirs forever, these liberties under-written, to have and to hold to them and their Heirs, of Us and our Heirs, for ever.

Clearly, the expression 'the Church of England' predates the Reformation and means simply the Catholic Church in England as opposed to any of the ones elsewhere...

31019. Sun Nov 13, 2005 3:55 pm Reply with quote
Strange Jack, this site (and all others I have found) refers to the "English Church" rather than the "church of england" which would clear up your little semantic problem.

31133. Mon Nov 14, 2005 3:28 am Reply with quote
Eek. I feel your hot breath at my heels once more.

I must stop eating those chilli pepper seeds, oh, and cure that foot fetish.
Sorry for my merciless hounding - next week is Be nice To Jack Week, I promise!


31150. Mon Nov 14, 2005 1:13 pm Reply with quote
BlahBlah, you may be interested (or not) to know that the hottest part of a chilli is not the seeds, but the membrane which attaches the seeds to the flesh

This area has the highest concentration of capsaicin (pronounced cap-SAY-a-sin), the compound giving peppers their pungent flavour. The reason the seeds have such a reputation for heat is because they are in such close contact with the white membrane, especially while the chile is being picked and transported.

31262. Tue Nov 15, 2005 12:24 am Reply with quote

The Magna Carta was written in Latin.

All your sites (and my book) are translations of the original into English.

I'm not trying to be clever. I didn't know this (though we all should perhaps have guessed) before you threw petrol onto BlahBlah's smouldering tongue and I went and checked the document in facsimile.

The disputed phrase is "quod Anglicana ecclesia libera sit" – which I guess could be equally reasonably translated as "the English church" or 'the Church of England' – or, for that matter, 'the Anglican church'.

It was presumptive of me, therefore (and however), to write

Clearly, the expression 'the Church of England' predates the Reformation and means simply the Catholic Church in England as opposed to any of the ones elsewhere...

because I was only guessing at the time.

However, last night Mrs Jumping and I were invited to High Table at Exeter College, Oxford – the QI Building's across-the-street neighbour.

I sat opposite the Rev Dr Barry Orford, who is the Priest Librarian and Archivist of Pusey House Chapel and Library.

Pusey House was founded in 1884 by proponents of the Oxford Movement ( a Catholic revival within the Church of England) and they continue that tradition today

through teaching and instruction in the Catholic Faith as the Church of England has received it, and by providing, in the Library and archive, a major resource for scholars and theologians at home and abroad.

I asked the Rev. Dr. Orford (or 'Barry' as I know him) for his opinion on the pre-Reformation use of the phrase 'the Church of England'...and I have to say he agreed with me.

smirk preen

31460. Tue Nov 15, 2005 8:23 pm Reply with quote

I guess the only way I can trump that source is to go all the way to the big man, but I think he's busy being omnipotent or something.

31489. Tue Nov 15, 2005 10:49 pm Reply with quote
What, Flash, you mean?

No, I think he's probably just playing the guitar...

QI Moderator
560541.  Wed May 27, 2009 5:51 pm Reply with quote

General QQ Round 12

33607. Tue Nov 22, 2005 9:20 pm Reply with quote
I'm not sure if I'm allowed to do this, but I thought I'd start a new game anyway, you can always ignore it if you want.

Today is the birthday of two former tennis greats.

Billie-Jean Moffat was born in 1943 and first played at Wimbledon in 1961. As Billie-Jean King, she amassed a record 39 Grand Slam titles, comprising singles, women's doubles and mixed doubles crowns. She was the last person to win the 'Triple Crown' at Wimbledon, when in 1973 she was Singles champion, Women's Doubles champion (with Rosie Casals) and Mixed Doubles champion (with Owen Davidson). In the same year, her 'Battle of the Sexes' match against Bobby Riggs attracted a crowd of 30,492, the largest crowd ever for a tennis match.

Boris Becker was born in 1968, the same year that the Wimbledon championships was Open for the first time. In 1985, he wrote his name in tennis history by becoming the youngest man ever to win the Wimbledon title, defeating Kevin Curren. He was also the first unseeded player to take the crown, as well as the first German. He went on to play in five of the next six finals, winning again in 1986 and 1989. Over his whole career, his total prize money earnings were just short of $25 million.

33615. Tue Nov 22, 2005 10:52 pm Reply with quote
The BJK "battle of the sexes" match was hosted in the Houston Astrodome, Texas. Home of the Houston Astros (baseball); Houston Oilers (American Football).

This stadium was also the first sports stadium to have a roof over a playing field, but is often thought of as a "pitchers" pitch in baseball, which apparently means it is difficult for batters to hit many home runs.

Hitters blame the air conditioning or poor visibility for their inability to score in this stadium, although on June 10, 1974, the Philadelphia Phillies’ Mike Schmidt, probably had more reason than most to be unhappy. A cracking shot flew 117ft up and 329ft distant from his bat, only to collide with a PA system suspended from the ceiling and to bounce back only yards from his feet. A guarenteed home run gained him no more than a single run.

33620. Tue Nov 22, 2005 11:15 pm Reply with quote
Just a short one, During the 2001 regular season Barry Bonds hit a record 73 home runs, led to an unusual record by the same player in the 2002 season. He was "walked" the most times in a season, a technique used by pitchers in the modern game to prevent the "big hitters" from scoring during a match.

33832. Wed Nov 23, 2005 7:38 pm Reply with quote
Some claim that there is a country even smaller than the world's smallest country, Vatican City. They claim that world's actual smallest country, is an organization headquartered in Rome called the Sovereign Military Order Of Malta (SMOM for short but also known as the Knights of Malta and also officially the Sovereign Military Hopsitaller Order Of St. John Of Jerusalem, Of Rhodes And Of Malta).

It is located in the city of Rome, Italy, has an area of two tennis courts, and as of 2001 has a population of 80, 20 less people than the Vatican. It is a sovereign entity under international law, just as the Vatican is.

34036. Thu Nov 24, 2005 1:35 pm Reply with quote
Yes, it's your favourite time again it's polearm time and from the Bumper Book of Big Blades on Sticks this episode we have The Partisan. The Officers of the Swiss Guard, or the Vatican Guard as they are sometimes known use The Partisan, a three bladed affair somewhat resembling a fleurs-de-lys, the 'ordinary' members of the Swiss Guard all use the Halberd. In pike regiments such as those from which the Swiss Guard were originally formed the sergeants were routinely equipped with Halberds and the officers with Partisans. Swiss and other mercenary companies such as the landsknecht adopted similar, and highly successful tactics of four deep ranks, effectively a Phalanx.

They participated prominantly in the Italian Renaissance Wars and thus came about the Swiss Guard. The wars were largely a matter of sieges and manouvering with no significant named actions.

The Swiss Guard, the world's smallest and perhaps most colorful army, has been the chief protectors of the pontiff. Clad in Renaissance helmets and blue, red and yellow tunics (the colors of the Medici family) that are said to have been designed by Michelangelo. For routine work, the guards wear blue uniforms and berets.

The Swiss Guard was founded in 1505 by Pope Julius II as a stable and disciplined corps of regular Swiss soldiers depending directly on the Holy See, for the guarding of the person of the Roman Pontiff and the Apostolic Palaces. January 21, 1506, is considered the official founding when 150 Swiss soldiers arrived in Rome and received the solemn blessing of Pope Julius II upon their arrival in St. Peter's Square.

In the early years, the corps was disbanded several times, and the guards had to retire, especially during the imprisonment or exile of the Popes.

During the Sack of Rome on May 6, 1527, when heroically fighting against the troops of Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, 147 Swiss Guards died alongside then-commander Kaspar Roist, while 42 were saved with Clement Vll (Giulio de' Medici) in Castle San Angelo.

34081. Thu Nov 24, 2005 5:04 pm Reply with quote
Mickey Mouse is known as "Topolino" in Italy

The most reproduced image in the world is Mickey Mouse, which can be found on over 7,500 different items

Walt Disney had originally suggested using the name Mortimer Mouse instead of Mickey Mouse

In 1933, Mickey Mouse is believed to have received 800,000 fan letters

34095. Thu Nov 24, 2005 5:22 pm Reply with quote
Sir Walter Raleigh and his son of the same name, known as Master Walt were once invited to dinner at a friends' house. Before arriving at their destination Raleigh snr. warned his son against brutish behaviour 'for thou art such a beare'.

All went well until, in the quiet bliss of replete satisfaction Master Walt recounted a story from his day. It seems that Master Walt had gone earlier to lay with a whore but that she had refused him since she had recently lain with his father. Outraged, Sir Walter 'dealt his sonne a damned blow' at which Master Walt said to the assembled company 'box about' "It will come to my father anon".

36263. Wed Nov 30, 2005 10:08 pm Reply with quote
Sir Walter Raleigh was arrested after the death of Elizabeth I and put on trial for treason, allegedly as part of the Main Plot. He was sent to the Tower of London, where he remained until 1616, during which time he wrote a book about ancient history called A Historie of the World. He was released in order to conduct a second expedition to the Orinoco in search of El Dorado. During the trip his men attacked the Spanish outpost of San Thome, where his son Walt was killed. Outraged at the attack, the Spanish Ambassador in London demanded that King James reinstate Raleigh's death sentence, and he was beheaded at Whitehall on October 29, 1618.

36265. Wed Nov 30, 2005 11:01 pm Reply with quote
During the Peasants Revolt (1381), lead by Wat Tyler and John Ball, the Tower of London was captured for the first and only time in its 1000 year plus history. The Tower fell on 14th June 1381, taken by 400 rebels led by John Starling . Amongst those who had taken refuge there were the Lord Chancellor (Simon of Sudbury, the Archbishop of Canterbury, who was particularly associated with the poll tax), the Lord Treasurer (Robert de Hales, the Grand Prior of the Knights Hospitallers of England) and John Legge. These three were summarily executed by the mob, King Richard II meanwhile spent the night in hiding, fearing for his life. The next day Richard met Wat Tyler and his hardcore of Kentish rebels at Smithfield, just outside of the city’s walls. It is thought that this was the idea of the Lord Mayor of London, Sir William Walworth, who wanted the rebels out of his city, perhaps fearing the damage that they could cause within its cramped medieval streets lined with tinder dry wooden houses. At this tense and highly charged meeting the Lord Mayor, apparently angered by Wat Tyler’s arrogant attitude to the king and his even more radical demands, drew his dagger and slashed at Tyler. Badly injured with a knife wound in his neck, Tyler was taken to nearby St Bartholomew’s Hospital but was later apprehended and executed.

Terry Jones of Monty Python fame claimed in his BBC series Medieval Lives ‘The Peasant’ that the King’s Mother (Joan the Fair) was also in residence but was left unharmed (but not it seems unaffected by the experience according to accounts of her life). I have not been able to confirm this interpretation however in the course of my brief research.

Terry Jones gained a degree in English from St. Edmund Hall College, Oxford University.'_Revolt

Last edited by Celebaelin on Sun Dec 04, 2005 2:58 pm; edited 1 time in total

36339. Thu Dec 01, 2005 1:30 pm Reply with quote
John Tyler was the 10th president of the US (if you start counting at Washington), and was the first to rise to office from the job of Vice-President, after the death of William Henry Harrison.

Tyler had been used as a vice-presidential candidate by the Whigs probably due to the fact that this Virginian might appeal to the Southern States, they had not really considered the fact that he may become president, but of course after 30 days Old Tippencoe was dead, and Tyler found himself in the White House.

At first the Whigs didn’t mind too much, assuming that the new president would be happy to go along with their reforms and program, but then one veto after another, and the Whigs were not happy. Tyler, you see had been brought up as a strict believer that the Constitution should be stuck to, and he never changed his opinion, much to the chagrin of his party.

Tyler was soon expelled from the party, and became the subject of the first impeachment resolution against a President. He left office in 1845, the year that the US first annexed Texas.

36394. Thu Dec 01, 2005 7:09 pm Reply with quote
Harry Truman was the man about which was once said "proved anyone can become president"
He was born in Lamar Missouri in 1884 he was Franklin Delano Rosevelt's Vice president for just 82 days when, upon FDR's death became President of the United States on April 12, 1945.
Rosevelts condition was kept secret from everybody and Truman, not prepared for his quick promotion was thrust into one of the most important jobs in the world.

Shortly after he acsended the presidency he had to make two of the hardest decisions possible, each led to a massive loss of life. The first, to drop two atomic bombs on Japan costing in excess of 200,000 lives.
The other was to lead the US into the Korean War. A war which ultimately led to Congress threatening impeachment. He chose not to stand for re-election and in 1952 returned to his hometown of Kansas City Missouri where he remained until his death, Boxing day 1972.

Truman was a studious child,having read all the books in the library in Independance Missouri by the age of 14, and his middle name is "S" owing to his parents John Anderson Truman and Martha Ellen Young Truman being unable to agree an actual name but they both suggest names begining in "S".

36501. Fri Dec 02, 2005 1:31 pm Reply with quote
The Japanese surrender at the end of World War II was signed aboard the USS Missouri. USS Missouri, a 45,000 ton Iowa class battleship built by the New York Navy Yard, was commissioned on 11 June 1944. She spent the remainder of that year preparing for combat, transiting to the Pacific in November. Arriving in the war zone in January 1945, Missouri supported the Iwo Jima invasion, the Ryukyus campaign and raids on Japan's home islands during the following months. In May, she became Third Fleet flagship and was the site of the 2 September 1945 Japanese surrender ceremony that ended World War II.

Missouri was the only U.S. battleship on active duty in June 1950, when the Korean War began, and made two combat deployments to the Western Pacific. Following that action, and several training cruises to Europe, she decommissioned in February 1955. For the next three decades, she was in reserve at Bremerton, Washington, and became an important tourist attraction.

All four Iowa class battleships were reactivated in the 1980s, with Missouri recommissioning in May 1986. Her next six years were busy ones, including, among other activities, a cruise around the World and a combat role in the 1991 Persian Gulf War. She decommissioned for the last time in March 1992. Stricken from the Naval Vessel Register in 1995, Missouri was transferred to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, in June 1998 to become a memorial.

Last edited by Celebaelin on Sun Dec 04, 2005 2:59 pm; edited 1 time in total

36625. Fri Dec 02, 2005 10:35 pm Reply with quote
Iwo Jima is an 8 sq. mile volcanic island in Japan, part of the Volcano Islands, approximately 650 nautical miles south of Tokyo.

Its name means sulphur island (iwo=sulphur and jima=island) and its major industry is a sulphur mine.

Iwo Jima has undergone dramatic uplift over the last 700 years, probably because of an expanding magma chamber underneath. A shoreline surveyed by Captain Cook in 1779 is now over 131 feet above sea level.

36898. Sun Dec 04, 2005 3:13 pm Reply with quote
Cook, James, 1728–79, English explorer and navigator. The son of a Yorkshire agricultural labourer, he had little formal education. After an apprenticeship to a firm of ship-owners at Whitby, he joined (1755) the royal navy and surveyed the St. Lawrence Channel (1760) and the coasts of Newfoundland and Labrador (1763–67). Cook was then given command of the Endeavour and sailed (1768) on an expedition to chart the transit of Venus; he returned to England in 1771, having also circumnavigated the globe and explored the coasts of New Zealand, which he accurately charted for the first time, and E Australia.

Cook next commanded (1772–75) an expedition to the South Pacific of two ships, the Resolution and the Adventure. On this voyage he disproved the rumour of a great southern continent, explored the Antarctic Ocean and the New Hebrides, visited New Caledonia, and by the observance of strict diet and hygiene prevented scurvy, heretofore the scourge of long voyages. Cook sailed again in 1776; in 1778 he visited and named the Sandwich Islands (Hawaii) and unsuccessfully searched the coast of NW North America for a Northwest Passage. On the return voyage he was killed by natives on the island of Hawaii. During the course of his journeys Cook visited about ten major Pacific island groups and more than 40 individual islands, also making first European contact with a wide variety of indigenous peoples.

Other significant explorers of the Australian coastline include Baudin, Flinders and Bass

Nicolas-Thomas Baudin (February 17, 1754 - September 16, 1803) was a French explorer.

Baudin was born on the Ile de Ré. At the age of fifteen he joined the merchant navy, and at twenty joined the French East India Company. He then joined the French navy and served in the Caribbean during the American War of Independence. After the war he captained ships transporting Austrian botanists to the Indian Ocean and the Pacific. During this time Baudin learnt about botany and how to keep plants and animals alive on board ship.

In 1792 France declared war on Austria and Baudin tried unsuccessfully to rejoin the French navy. He returned to France in 1795 and visited Antoine de Jussieu at the Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle to suggest a botanical voyage to the Caribbean. This voyage was a success, and Baudin returned to France with a large collection of plants, birds and insects.

In October 1800 he was selected to lead an expedition to map the coast of Australia. He had two ships, Le Géographe and Le Naturaliste, and was accompanied by nine zoologists and botanists, including Jean Baptiste Leschenault de la Tour. He reached Australia in May 1801, and in April 1802 met Matthew Flinders, also engaged in charting the coastline, in Encounter Bay. Baudin then stopped at the British colony at Sydney for supplies, then in Tasmania, before continuing north to Timor.
Baudin then sailed for home, stopping at Mauritius, where he died of tuberculosis.

Matthew Flinders (1774-1814) was born in Lincolnshire in England. Flinders joined the navy where he trained as a navigator. Flinders wanted to become a sailor and explorer after reading the book Robinson Crusoe. He met George Bass, a ship's doctor, when they were both sailing to Australia on the Reliance. They became very good friends and were to go on many journeys of exploration together. Flinders was to first man to circumnavigate Australia. It was Flinders who suggested the name "Australia" and it was adopted in 1824. Several places have been named after him such as Flinders Island.

In 1796 Bass and Flinders explored the coastline south of Sydney using a tiny open boat about 2.5 metres long. It was called the Tom Thumb. As they were sailing along the southern coast of New South Wales, they were met by a party of fierce-looking aborigines. They decided to calm things down by trying to amuse the aborigines. Flinders pulled out a pair of scissors and started cutting the aborigines hair, while Bass and a servant boy called Martin made the boat ready. Then Flinders leapt aboard the flimsy boat and the three companions sailed away, leaving the aborigines on the shore.

Flinders had been doing some exploring on his own and believed that he could prove that Van Diemen's Land (Tasmania) was an island. Bass and Flinders convinced Governor Hunter that another expedition should be set up with a bigger boat and more men. In 1798, Bass and Flinders sailed the Norfolk through Bass Strait and round Van Diemen's Land (Tasmania), proving that it was an island. This was to be their last voyage together as Bass disappeared mysteriously in the Pacific Ocean.

Flinders returned to England in 1800. While he was here, he became married. The British government asked him to make an even bigger voyage - right around Australia. Leaving his wife, Anne, behind in England, he sailed back to Australia in the Investigator. In 1802, Flinders sailed north from Sydney, passing through Torres Strait and across the Gulf of Carpentaria. He went right round Australia, becoming the first man to circumnavigate Australia. He called in at Timor on the way, arriving back in Sydney in June, 1803.

Flinders was captured by the French on the island of Mauritius in 1803 until 1810. They claimed that he was a spy. He was later allowed to return to England. When he reached London, he was 39. but looked much older. His health began to fail and he died young, like Bass. Although very ill, he completed a book on his travels called A Voyage to Terra Australis. He died on the day that his book was published. Flinders proved that Australia was not a series of islands, but one island. His charts were so accurate, that they were used for many years after his death.

With apologies, I’ve lost track of the source of the Cook and Baudin information which I cut and pasted to a word file yesterday. The Flinders info is quoted from

37310. Tue Dec 06, 2005 6:28 pm Reply with quote
In 1792 France declared war on Austria on 20th April, despite the French army lacking organization, discipline, and many of its noble officers. The allied Austrian and Prussian forces under Charles William Ferdinand, duke of Brunswick, quickly crossed the frontier and began to march on Paris. The duke issued a manifesto threatening to raze Paris should the royal family be harmed. This manifesto angered the French and contributed to the suspension of the king (Aug., 1792). The comte de Rochambeau, commanding the northern sector, and the marquis de Lafayette, commanding the center, resigned. Their able successors, the generals Dumouriez and Kellermann, turned the tide when they repulsed the invaders at Valmy (Sept. 20). Dumouriez advanced on the Austrian Netherlands (Belgium), and he seized it after the battle of Jemappes (Nov. 6), while Custine captured Mainz and advanced on Frankfurt.

Late in 1792 the Convention issued a decree offering assistance to all peoples wishing to recover their liberty. This decree, the execution of Louis XVI (Jan., 1793), and the opening of the Scheldt estuary (contrary to the Peace of Westphalia) provoked Great Britain, Holland, and Spain to join Austria and Prussia in the First Coalition against France. Sardinia had already declared war after France had occupied Savoy and Nice (Sept., 1792).

All of this marked the beginning of the French Revolutionary Wars, which continued until 1802, and were soon followed by the Napoleonic Wars, until the Battle of Waterloo in 1815.

37332. Tue Dec 06, 2005 8:15 pm Reply with quote
The word 'duke' descends from the Roman dux, deriving from the verb ducere, meaning "to lead", a title given in the early second century AD by the Romans to a general commanding a single military expedition and holding no other power than that which he exercised over his soldiers. When civil and military functions became separated in the fourth century the dux became commander of all the troops in a single province.

In Germany, by the 7th century, the duces (plural of dux) developed into hereditary clan-duchies. After Charlemagne crushed the Germanic tribes in 788, the younger sons of the monarchs were appointed as military governors (royal dukes) of the important border provinces, which however also soon developed into hereditary duchies and a source of intrigues against the monarch. The medieval dukes had a strong position in the realms they belonged to. They were responsible for the military defence of an important region, and had strong arguments for retaining the Crown's tax incomes of their duchy to fund their military force.

There were no Anglo-Saxon dukes. The Black Prince was created Duke of Cornwall in 1337. He was the first Duke in England.

In the United Kingdom, the inherited office of a duke along with its dignities, privileges, and rights is a dukedom. However, the title of duke has never been associated with independent rule in the British Isles. Dukes in the United Kingdom are addressed as 'Your Grace' and referred to as 'His Grace'. Currently, there are twenty-seven dukedoms in the peerages of England, Scotland, Great Britain, and the United Kingdom, held by twenty-four different people.

37362. Tue Dec 06, 2005 11:50 pm Reply with quote
The 15th Century was a highly concentrated time of Church building in Cornubia - The Land of the Saint as it was known. The area is what we know as Cornwall and 5 centuries later a large number of the village churches remain mostly unchanged over much resoration. One such church in St Blazey was first constructed in 1440 then underwent a thorough restoration by William Moffat in 1839. Few original 15th Century churches remain following the Spanish attacks although there is definately one at Paul, even though the area was heavily attacked by the Spanish forces in the late 16th Century (July/August 1597)

Ta daaaaaaaa

37389. Wed Dec 07, 2005 2:06 am Reply with quote
Good shot, sir!


37410. Wed Dec 07, 2005 3:19 am Reply with quote
lblm is the winner!

You to start the next round, Andy :-)

37417. Wed Dec 07, 2005 8:28 am Reply with quote
I'm working till 9pm today so I doubt I'll actually get time till tomorrow.

I promise I won't be embaressed if someone else starts for me.

Zaphod Beeblebrox
37498. Wed Dec 07, 2005 6:30 pm Reply with quote
I'm sure you won't be too embarrassed either... :)

64153. Thu Apr 06, 2006 10:37 pm Reply with quote
In 1792 France declared war on Austria and Baudin tried unsuccessfully to rejoin the French navy

So your country attacks a land-locked country, and you try to join the navy?
0/10 for mindless courage there, methinks!

64178. Fri Apr 07, 2006 9:41 am Reply with quote
There's nothing cushy about life in The Womens' Auxilliary Baloon Corps.

Incidentally whatever happened to QQ15? It appears to have joined the choir invisibule - perhaps QQ16 should make an appearance.

QI Moderator
560545.  Wed May 27, 2009 5:55 pm Reply with quote

General QQ Round 13

38026. Sat Dec 10, 2005 4:22 am Reply with quote
Well I don't know about you but I've waited quite long enough for someone to start a new Qing Qong so I'm going to do it. To get the ball rolling on this 10th day of December lets have the well known wierdness of December being the 12th month but still bearing the Roman name for the 10th month.

The Julian calendar was introduced in 46 BC by Julius Caesar and took force in 45 BC (709 ab urbe condita). It was chosen after consultation with the Alexandrian astronomer Sosigenes and was probably designed to approximate the tropical year, known at least since Hipparchus. It has a regular year of 365 days divided into 12 months, and a leap day is added to February every four years.
According to the 13th century scholar Sacrobosco, the original scheme for the months in the Julian Calendar was very regular, alternately long and short. From January through December, the month lengths according to Sacrobosco for the Roman Republican calendar were:

30, 29, 30, 29, 30, 29, 30, 29, 30, 29, 30, and 29, totaling 354 days.
He then thought that Julius Caesar added one day to every month except February, a total of 11 more days, giving the year 365 days. A leap day could now be added to the extra short February:

31, 29 (30), 31, 30, 31, 30, 31, 30, 31, 30, 31, and 30
He then said Augustus changed this to:

31, 28 (29), 31, 30, 31, 30, 31, 31, 30, 31, 30, and 31
giving us the irregular month lengths which we still use today, so that the length of Augustus would not be shorter than (and therefore inferior to) the length of Iulius.

Named after the Roman god of beginnings and endings Janus (the month Januarius).

The name comes either from the old-Italian god Februus or else from februa, signifying the festivals of purification celebrated in Rome during this month. (februare, Latin: to purify CB)

This is the first month of the Roman year. It is named after the Roman god of war, Mars.

Called Aprilis, from aperire, "to open". Possible because it is the month in which the buds begin to open.

The third month of the Roman calendar. The name probably comes from Maiesta, the Roman goddess of honor and reverence.

The fourth month was named in honor of Juno. However, the name might also come from iuniores (young men; juniors) as opposed to maiores (grown men; majors) for May, the two months being dedicated to young and old men.

It was the month in which Julius Caesar was born, and named Julius in his honor in 44 BCE, the year of his assassination. Also called Quintilis (fifth month).

Originally this month was called Sextilis (from sextus, "six"), but the name was later changed in honor of the first of the Roman emperors, Augustus (because several fortunate events of his life occurred during this month).

The name comes from septem, "seven".

The name comes from octo, "eight"

The name comes from novem, "nine".

The name comes from decem, "ten".

The Gregorian Calendar was devised because the mean year in the Julian Calendar was a little too long, causing the vernal equinox to slowly drift backwards in the calendar year.

38032. Sat Dec 10, 2005 4:59 am Reply with quote
A vernal pool is a contained basin depression lacking a permanent above ground outlet. In the Northeast, it fills with water with the rising water table of fall and winter or with the meltwater and runoff of winter and spring snow and rain. Many vernal pools in the Northeast are covered with ice in the winter months. They contain water for a few months in the spring and early summer. By late summer, a vernal pool is generally (but not always) dry. Below are views of the same pool at three different times of the year.

Vernal pools form habitats for fairy shrimps here & salamanders

38033. Sat Dec 10, 2005 5:47 am Reply with quote
Axolotls may be metamorphosed into Salamanders by injections of Thyroxine but generally remain in the juvenile state, displaying a phenomenon known as neoteny.

The Axolotl is also unique because it exhibits neoteny, meaning that rather than undergoing metamorphosis from egg to larva to adult, the Axolotl halts its development in the larval stage. This means that it retains its gills and fins, although it grows much larger than most salamanders do in their larval stage. Many scientists believe that this neoteny is a "backward" step in evolution, as the Axolotl is descended from the Tiger Salamander, and can interbreed with this species, that does not exhibit neoteny. When other amphibians exhibit neoteny, it is usually caused by low levels of iodine. In the case of the Axolotl, it is entirely genetic.

Confusion over the word "axolotl"

A lot of people seem to think that "axolotl" is a word for the larval form of any salamander rather than the name of a certain species. This confusion probably has to do with the fact that young tiger salamanders look a whole lot like young axolotls. But they are not the same. When properly used, the word axolotl refers only to creatures belonging to the species Ambystoma mexicanum, that originated in the lakes of Mexico. The tiger salamander (Ambystoma tigrinum) is a closely related, but different, species.

I understand that some scientific types like to refer to larval salamanders as axolotls, simply because its quicker than saying "juvenile tiger salamander." While people who do this are normally aware that they are lumping different species together, this over-application of the term trickles down into mass confusion among the pet-owning public.

Acceleration of Ambystoma tigrinum Metamorphosis by Corticotrophin-Releasing Hormone Graham C. Boorse and Robert J. Denver Journal of Experimental Zoology 293: 94-98 (2002)

38572. Mon Dec 12, 2005 12:16 am Reply with quote
Thyroxine is secreted by the thyroid gland, excess production of thyroxine is known hyperthyroidism & is often manifested by an increase in metabolic rates & a swolen thyroid gland called a goitre.

Diffuse toxic goitre

This is the most common type and is also known as Grave's disease. This is mostly seen among young people but can also affect the elderly.

The whole thyroid gland will normally be slightly swollen. Most people who have this type of hyperthyroidism have different types of eye problems.

These can range from irritated eyes and feelings of dryness to a distinct type of protruding eyes and difficulty closing the eyelids sometimes with additional double vision. The eye problems are more commonly seen in smokers.

Toxic nodular goitre

This is mostly seen among elderly people. The thyroid gland is often non-uniform in shape and rough. In some cases, an increased metabolic rate is caused by a tumour, usually benign, in the thyroid gland. This illness is not generally associated with eye problems.

Subacute thyroiditis

This condition, also known as De Quervain's thyroiditis, is caused by an inflammation of the thyroid gland which is probably due to a viral infection. The inflammation causes an increase in the release of hormones that have been stored in the thyroid gland. This causes temporary symptoms of hyperthyroidism along with some tenderness and swelling of the thyroid.

After the initial illness there may be a period in which the thyroid becomes underactive, but most people recover normal activity within six months.

Insufficient production is known as hypothyroidism, often caused by a deficiency of Iodine.


Hypothyroidism, or underactivity of the thyroid gland, may cause a variety of symptoms and may affect all body functions. The body's normal rate of functioning slows, causing mental and physical sluggishness. The symptoms may vary from mild to severe, with the most severe form called myxedema, which is a medical emergency.

The most common cause of hypothyroidism is Hashimoto's thyroiditis, a disease of the thyroid gland where the body's immune system attacks the gland. Failure of the pituitary gland to secrete a hormone to stimulate the thyroid gland (secondary hypothyroidism) is a less common cause of hypothyroidism. Other causes include congenital defects, surgical removal of the thyroid gland, irradiation of the gland, or inflammatory conditions.

Risk factors include age over 50 years, female gender, obesity, thyroid surgery, and exposure of the neck to X-ray or radiation treat

38586. Mon Dec 12, 2005 1:05 am Reply with quote
The reason why table salt has added iodine is that iodine deficiency causes exophthalmic goitre; this was known in the UK as Derbyshire neck as the local rock strata in the area lack iodine. Exophthalmia gives the eyes a bulging appearance.

Graves Disease is an endocrine disorder caused by oversecretion of thyroid hormone (hyperthyroidism) from overactive and enlarged thyroid gland (goiter); symptoms include rapid and irregular heartbeat, shortness of breath, weight loss, restlessness, muscular weakness, and bulging eyeballs; classified as autoimmune disease (immune system attacks body's own tissue)

In many countries, goitre has been largely eliminated by the widespread use of iodised salt, but at one time it was common in areas where the soil and rocks lack iodine, as in Derbyshire, where the disease was called 'Derbyshire Neck'. Hypothyroidism can also result from a glandular malfunction known as myxoedema in adults and cretinism in infancy and childhood.

Goitre can be caused by a range of factors, including:
- Insufficient iodine in the diet.
- High consumption of certain foods that neutralise iodine, such as cabbage, broccoli and cauliflower. Other foods, like soy, may also induce goitres.
- Certain drugs, such as lithium and phenylbutazone.
- Thyroid cancer.
- Nodules growing on the thyroid gland.
- Hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid gland).
- Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid gland).

38598. Mon Dec 12, 2005 2:07 am Reply with quote
Table salt (Sodium Cloride, NaCl) is only one form of refined salt available for domestic use, pickling salt being coarser & popcorn salt finer. There are of course less refined salts available, rock & sea being two examples.

Salt has been found on meteorites from Mars, which lends some weight to arguments in favour of life being found on Mars as salt loving bacteria have survived for over 250 million years.

Salt crystal are cubic in appearance. There is an online salt museum here.

39472. Thu Dec 15, 2005 10:47 am Reply with quote
Sodium chloride crystals are face centred cubic (fcc) in configuration. Roughly 20% of the elements crystallize with face centred cubic structures.

Sodium chloride forms crystals with cubic symmetry. In these, the larger chloride ions are arranged in a cubic close-packing, while the smaller sodium ions fill the octahedral gaps between them. Each ion is surrounded by six of the other kind. This same basic structure is found in many other minerals, and is known as the halite structure.

The ionic radius of the sodium ion is 1.16 angstroms and that of the chloride ion is 1.67 angstroms. The ratio of radii for the cation and anion is thus r+/r- = 1.16/1.67 = 0.695.

With a radius ratio of 0.695, the cubic holes are too large (rhole/r = 0.732) to be suitable. The sodium ions will prefer to occupy octahedral holes in a closest-packed structure. As it happens, the chloride ions in NaCl pack in a cubic closest-packed structure.

The structure is normally drawn in an "exploded" version which exaggerates the distance between the ions.

At 298K (25oC) sodium metal is most stable as body centred cubic (bcc) crystals.

Another common form of crystal lattice is hexagonal closest packing (hcp).

39996. Sat Dec 17, 2005 10:00 am Reply with quote
There is a common urban myth about the element Aluminium which claims that the Americans call it Aluminum because of a spelling error on the first crate of aluminium sent to America. This is of course total poppycock.

Sir Humphry made a bit of a mess of naming this new element, at first spelling it alumium (this was in 1807) then changing it to aluminum, and finally settling on aluminium in 1812. His classically educated scientific colleagues preferred aluminium right from the start, because it had more of a classical ring, and chimed harmoniously with many other elements whose names ended in –ium, like potassium, sodium, and magnesium, all of which had been named by Davy.

The official change in the US to the –um spelling happened quite late: the American Chemical Society only adopted it in 1925. The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) officially standardised on aluminium in 1990, though this has done nothing, of course, to change the way people in the US spell it for day to day purposes.

40012. Sat Dec 17, 2005 11:52 am Reply with quote
The Relative Atomic Mass (RAM) of Aluminium (Al) is 27 (26.98154), its name is derived from a Latinisation of Alum, which in turn is an anglicisation of the Latin alumen.

The word "alumen," which we translate "alum," occurs in Pliny's Natural History. In the 15th chapter of his 35th book he gives a detailed description of it. By comparing this with the account of stupteria given by Dioscorides in the 123rd chapter of his 5th book, it is obvious that the two are identical. Pliny informs us that alumen was found naturally in the earth. He calls it salsugoterrae. Different substances were distinguished by the name of "alumen"; but they were all characterized by a certain degree of astringency.

al·um1 (ăl'əm) n.

Any of various double sulfates of a trivalent metal such as aluminum, chromium, or iron and a univalent metal such as potassium or sodium, especially aluminum potassium sulfate, AlK(SO4)2·12H2O, widely used in industry as clarifiers, hardeners, and purifiers and medicinally as topical astringents and styptics.
[Middle English, from Old French, from Latin alūmen.]

Re: Aluminium

Discoverer: Hans Christian Oersted
Discovery Location: Denmark
Discovery Year: 1825
Name Origin: Latin: alumen (alun)

Most plentiful metal in earth's crust (8%), but never occurs in free form. Obtained by electrolysis from bauxite (Al2O2).
Kitchen utensils, building decorations, electrical transmission (not nearly as conductive as copper, but cheaper). Alloys containing copper, magnesium, silicon, manganese and other metals are much stronger and more durable than aluminum, making aluminum useful in the manufacture of aircraft and rockets.
Additional Notes:
While aluminum was discovered by Hans Christian Oersted, Denmark, 1825 (impure form); most credit Wohler with isolating it in1827. Actually the ancient Greeks and Romans used alum (aluminum sulfate with potassium) in medicine and in dying. de Morveau recognized the base in alum in1761 and proposed it be called alumine. Lavoisier thought that alum was an oxide of this undiscovered metal. In 1807 Davy proposed the name alumium for this undiscovered metal, but it wasn't until 1827 that Wohler actually isolated aluminum, though an impure form was isolated by Oersted two years earlier. The new metal was called aluminum. Two years later it was changed to aluminium to conform with the "ium" in most other elements. American Chemical Society changed the spelling back to aluminum in 1925, which we still use. England and elsewhere in the world they still spell it aluminium. So if you hear someone say "al-u-min'-i-um foil" instead of aluminum foil, you'll know where it came from.

40959. Tue Dec 20, 2005 11:17 pm Reply with quote
The American Chemical Society is the guardian of Chemical knowledge in America, producing many renowned publications. One of the daftest articles I noticed concerned the standardisation of dust. The standard is known as Arizona Road Dust and is literally fine dust from the Salt River Valley in Arizona.
INTRODUCTION : Arizona sand has been used for testing filtration, automotive, and heavy equipment components for decades. A variety of names have been applied to Arizona sand including Arizona Road Dust, Arizona Silica, AC Fine and AC Coarse Test Dusts, SAE Fine and Coarse Test Dusts, J726 Test Dusts, and most recently ISO Ultrafine, ISO Fine, ISO Medium and ISO Coarse Test Dusts. Many military and industrial specifications require use of Arizona Test Dust and refer to one or more of the above names. This report will attempt to describe particle size differences and provide a brief history of Arizona Test Dust use dating back to 1940.

Use of Arizona sand as a test contaminant dates back prior to 1940. The proposed Air Cleaner Test Code, SAE Journal, Volume 47, July 1940 pages 294 to 299 provides an early examination of particle shape, particle size, and accepted analysis methods used at that time. SAE Handbook, 1943 Edition, Page 716, Air Cleaner Test Code-Preparation of Air Cleaner Test Dust reads as follows: Due to the absence of definite information and the almost unanimous lack of agreement on the part of those concerned, it has not been possible to set up a standard test dust although there is probably no single element affecting to so great a degree the efficiency of an air cleaner as the fineness of the dust used for testing. Satisfactory results in the development of air cleaners having a high degree of field efficiency have been obtained by preparing dust as follows:

Raw Material : The material shall be dust that settles out of the air behind or around tractors or implements operating in the Salt River Valley, Arizona. It is recommended that this dust be caught on a canvas cloth.

Method of Manufacture :
1-Dry raw dust in oven
2-Sift dust through 200 mesh screen (0.0029 in. width of openings).
3-Discard dust retained on 200 mesh screen
4-Sift dust obtained in section 2 through a 270 mesh screen (0.0021 in. width opening) until no more will go through.

Quaintly Ignorant
42552. Mon Jan 02, 2006 7:27 pm Reply with quote
I hope I have understood the rules properly and I am not stepping on toes here by posting.

Dust shows its presence in our universe by blocking out light emitted from stars or nebulae behind it as viewed from Earth. By studying how dust absorbs, emits, and reflects light, astronomers do know that interstellar dust is much different than the dust found around a typical house. The nature of the origins of inter-stellar dust grains is somewhat mysterious but it is supposed to do with the formation of stars. Reflection nebulae shine, as the name suggests, by the reflection of the light of nearby stars upon vast 'clouds' of inter-stellar dust. The size of the dust grains invariably cause blue light to reflected more than red giving the typical blue hue associated with these phenomena, although this is by no means a rule. For example:

Horsehead Nebula
One of the most identifiable nebulae in the sky, the Horsehead Nebula in Orion, is part of a large, dark, molecular cloud. Also known as Barnard 33, the unusual shape was first discovered on a photographic plate in the late 1800s. The red glow originates from hydrogen gas predominantly behind the nebula, ionized by the nearby bright star Sigma Orionis. The darkness of the Horsehead is caused mostly by thick dust, although the lower part of the Horsehead's neck casts a shadow to the left. Streams of gas leaving the nebula are funneled by a strong magnetic field. Bright spots in the Horsehead Nebula's base are young stars just in the process of forming. Light takes about 1500 years to reach us from the Horsehead Nebula.
noli nothis permittere te terere.

42593. Mon Jan 02, 2006 9:10 pm Reply with quote
I hope I have understood the rules properly and I am not stepping on toes here by posting.

Not at all, welcome - and thanks for breaking the silence.

The Heraldic terminology for a star is complicated by the fact that there are three different words used to describe the same basic idea.

Firstly there is the etoile (or estoile or etoyle) from the French étoile which primarily signifies a six pointed, wavy (rayant) armed version of the star but is used interchangeably with mullet which more properly indicates a straight armed star of five points in English heraldry and six points in French. Etoile of more than six points are described by giving the number of points and depicted as having alternately straight and wavy arms. The numbering system of description also applies to the mullet and a virtually identical device, the rowel but the arms of both of these devices are all straight. One minor point of difference between the mullet and the rowel is that the latter may be pierced centrally (its name comes from the ‘wheel’ portion of a spur, hence the more modern term spur-rowel).

The confusion that exists is quite ably illustrated by the following:

Argent, on a chief gules, two mullets of eleven points or, pierced vert--John de SAINT JOHN[glass at Dorchester, Oxfordshire].
John de PLESCY, dargent a treis molettes de goules perces--Another Roll, temp. HEN. III.
Sire Hue de PLECY, de argent a vj rouwels de goules--Roll, temp. ED. II.
Sire Hugh de CULY, de argent a un cheveron e iij rouwels de goules--Ibid.
Ermine, on a canton sable a five-pointed estoile argent--Sir William de STROUD, Somerset.
Argent, a chevron between three estoiles of eight points wavy or--WISEMAN, Scotland.
Sable, an estoile argent--INGILBY, Yorkshire. [other branches of the same family bear the estoile with eight and sixteen points.]
If all things are comparitive and comparisons are odious where does that leave us?

I know what was meant by the term forest in the 13th century - honestly I do.

post 100067 etc.

Last edited by Celebaelin on Sun Jan 08, 2006 3:44 pm; edited 1 time in total

44025. Sun Jan 08, 2006 3:10 am Reply with quote
there is quite a large difference between dust and Dust.

The dust which collects in houses is composed of atmospheric dust combined with dust generated by the inhabitants, mostly from sloughed skin cells and fibers from clothing and coverings. It can be removed with a broom, dusting cloth, or vacuum cleaner.

House dust mites, often found in fibers like carpets and beds, feed on the organic components of house dust. Their feces, in turn, become part of house dust and can provoke allergic reactions in humans.

A variety of technology has been developed for the purpose of removing accumulated dust in the house. The air filter is frequently used on inlet of the air ducts to trap dust. These can be supplemented by air purifiers, including devices that employ ionization to trap dust particles. Accumulated dust is collected by means of dusters and vacuum cleaners.

Dust is also widely present in outer space, where gas and dust clouds are primary precursors for planetary systems. The zodiacal light, seen in the sky at night, is produced by sunlight reflecting off particles of dust in orbit around the Sun. The tails of comets are produced by emissions of dust and ionized gas from the body of the comet. Dust also covers planetary bodies, and great dust storms are produced on Mars that can cover nearly the entire planet. Interstellar dust is found between the stars, producing diffuse nebula and reflection nebula.

It is thought that dust samples returned from outer space could tell scientists much about the early conditions in the solar system. Several spacecraft have been launched in an attempt to gather samples of dust and other materials. Among these was Stardust which flew past the comet Wild 2 in 2004. The Japanese Hayabusa spacecraft is attempting a sample return of dust collected from the surface of an asteroid.

44095. Sun Jan 08, 2006 3:42 pm Reply with quote
rko: Not that I have a problem with this particularly as long as another reply arrives soon but it took nearly a fortnight to get from dust to star dust (and thence to heraldic star) and the idea is to follow on from the previous post, cross-posting permitting. It seems that dust does not inspire many of us to QIness. Previously in such circumstances two colours have been used to distinguish the different 'balls'. May I suggest blue for dust balls and red for star balls!

I will amended my post accordingly, if you do the same we can return to black if and when the two balls are both returned with one shot.

Quaintly Ignorant
44118. Sun Jan 08, 2006 5:41 pm Reply with quote
St John the baptist is believed by many to be an indication that reincarnation is accepted within Christianity but not actively taught. St John the baptist is thought to be a fulfillment of Malachi 4:5
Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD

Elijah has one of the greates exits within the bible
2Kings 2:11 And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.

Elijah is rendered as Elias in the New Testament and Jesus confirms that the spirit of Elijah is within John the Baptist.
Matthew 11:7 And as they departed, Jesus began to say unto the multitudes concerning John, What went ye out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken with the wind?
8 But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in soft raiment? behold, they that wear soft clothing are in kings' houses.
9 But what went ye out for to see? A prophet? yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet.
10 For this is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.
11 Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
12 And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.
13 For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John.
14 And if ye will receive it, this is Elias, which was for to come.

Some traditional stories of John the Baptist:

Emperor Dometian had him brought to Rome, beaten, poisoned, and thrown into a cauldron of boiling oil, but he stepped out unharmed and was banished to Patmos instead.

When John was en route to preach in Asia, his ship was wrecked in a storm; all but John were cast ashore. John was assumed dead, but two weeks later the waves cast him ashore alive at the feet of his disciple Prochoros.

When John denounced idol worship as demonic, followers of Artemis stoned him; the rocks turned and hit the throwers.

He prayed in a temple of Artemis; fire from heaven killed 200 men who worshipped the idol. When the remaining group begged for mercy, he raised the 200 from the dead; they all converted and were baptized.

Drove out a demon who had lived in a pagan temple for 249 years.

Aboard ship, he purified vessels of sea water for drinking.

Ceonops, a magician, pretended to bring three dead people come to life; the "people" were actually demons who mimicked people so the magician could turn people away from Christ. Through prayer, John caused the magician to drown and the demons to vanish.

Once a year his grave gave off a fragrant dust that cured the sick.

I believe that reuturns Celebaelin's red shot with information on St John and RKO's blue shot with a further spurious reference to dust ;-). Which should allow us to return to black.

44227. Mon Jan 09, 2006 5:14 am Reply with quote
According to the Catholic Encyclopedia there are 27 Saint Johns, these are listed as:

John I, Pope Saint
John and Cyrus, Saints
John and Paul, Saints
John Baptist de la Salle, Saint
John Baptist de Rossi, Saint
John Berchmans, Saint
John Bosco, Saint
John Boste, Saint
John Cantius, Saint
John Capistran, Saint
John Chrysostom, Saint
John Climacus, Saint
John Damascene, Saint
John Fisher, Saint
John Francis Regis, Saint
John Joseph of the Cross, Saint
John Nepomucene, Saint
John of Beverley, Saint
John of God, Saint
John of Sahagun, Saint
John of the Cross, Saint
John Rigby, Saint
John Roberts, Saint
John the Almsgiver, Saint
John the Baptist, Saint
John the Evangelist, Saint
John the Silent, Saint
John Twenge, Saint

The length of time taken in the process of beatification is quite extensive, from his execution on 10 December 1610, the introduction of the cause of beatification being approved by Leo XIII in his Decree of 4 December, 1886 and his canonisation as one of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales in 1970 by Pope Paul VI, John Roberts waited in all a mere 360 years. His feast-day, as one of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales, is 25 October. John of Beverley on the other hand had a trifling 316 year wait between his death (721) and his canonisation (1037).

45001. Thu Jan 12, 2006 2:41 am Reply with quote
St John of Beverley died of natural causes in 721 and his relics placed in Beverley Cathedral. His tomb was a place of pilgrimage after his death, despite the church being almost destroyed by the Danes. Sometime during the tenth century it was rebuilt and received a visit from King Athelstan before a great battle with the Vikings. The shrine recieved a boost in 1037 with John's canonization and his saint's banner was carried at the 1138 Battle of the Standard. Although the church was reworked by the Normans after the conquest, in 1188 the new building was destroyed by fire. In around 1220 work began on rebuilding a new minster church, which was finally completed circa 1420.

See here for a great 360 degree view of the interior of Beverley Minster

45009. Thu Jan 12, 2006 3:07 am Reply with quote
One interesting thing about Beverley is that a whole fleet of East Yorkshire double decker buses was built with specially shaped roofs in order to be able to pass through Beverley's North Bar - the original gateway when the town had walls. Here's a picture of the gateway:

45013. Thu Jan 12, 2006 4:45 am Reply with quote
Have you got a picture of the buses?

45038. Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:00 am Reply with quote
Visitors enter the temple complex of Dendara through the immense Roman gateway. Dendara is one of several temples in Egypt that was built by the Ptolemies and Romans in an effort to show their dedication to the main Egyptian gods.

The tempel of Dendara was know as the 'Castle of the Sistrum' or 'Pr Hathor' - House of Hathor.

In the Hypostyle Hall, you can observe the remarkable astronomical ceiling.

45074. Thu Jan 12, 2006 1:31 pm Reply with quote
That's a winning shot I think iluphade.

You to serve for General QQ 14

45079. Thu Jan 12, 2006 1:38 pm Reply with quote
My mestake, I had actually forgotten to read the serve, I figured it was quite unlikely for me to be anywhere near.

45083. Thu Jan 12, 2006 1:51 pm Reply with quote
Well your post contains the word Roman (see the first post in this thread) and is about gateways and entrances which ties in with Jenny's post. There's no strict requirement to contain a word that was in Jenny's post and the subjects are obviously connected so I'd say it was a dashed fine shot; I definitely saw chalk fly up.

45120. Thu Jan 12, 2006 3:19 pm Reply with quote
Yep - good shot, sir :)

45177. Thu Jan 12, 2006 5:37 pm Reply with quote
Samivel - I can only find one picture on the net but this is as I remember it:

45256. Thu Jan 12, 2006 8:50 pm Reply with quote
Thanks :)

QI Moderator
560546.  Wed May 27, 2009 5:58 pm Reply with quote

General QQ Round 14

45082. Thu Jan 12, 2006 1:51 pm Reply with quote
Well, my first serve:

Christian Matthias Theodor Mommsen (30 November 1817 - 1 November 1903) was a famous German scholar, specialising in law.
He studied jurisprudence, and consequently received a grant to visit France and Italy, to study classical history. His study of roman law didn't go unnoticed, and he received much recognition. He was a honorary citizen of rome, and he received the nobelprize for literature (as one of the few non-fiction writers) in 1902 for his work Römische Geschichte (Roman History).
He published many works (according to one 1905 biography over a thousand) he was one of the pioneers of epigraphy (the study of inscriptions on stone and wood), he published a version of the corpus iuris civiles and the corpus theodosianus, which are very important for students of law in this day and age.
He was even a family man, having 16 children, allthough some died at a very young age.

(A very very broad opener, enjoy)

45585. Sat Jan 14, 2006 2:46 am Reply with quote
Under English law the maximum penalty for possession with intent to supply ecstasy is merely life imprisonment and an unlimited fine.

At best estimate there were 614,000 ecstasy users in the UK in 2005 (posession is punishable by up to seven years in jail and an unlimited fine).

MDMA (3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine) is sold as 'ecstasy' in a tragically rather successful marketing ploy, this is evidenced by the drugs' rather lengthy history prior to its eventual rise to notoriety.

Ecstasy was first produced in 1913 by a German company possibly to be used as an appetite suppressant. MDMA has no approved medical use in the U.S. It was originally intended as a weight-loss (anorectic) drug, but because of its side-effects MDMA was never marketed. Chemically, it is an analogue of MDA, a drug that was popular in the 1960s.

In the late 1970s, MDMA was used to facilitate psychotherapy by a small group of therapists in the United States. Illicit use of the drug did not become popular until the late 1980s and early 1990s.

In summary, MDMA effects 5-HT similarly to the way that amphetamines effect dopamine, by inhibiting the reuptake and causing the release of 5-HT. This effect is somewhat similar to the effect that SSRI anti-depressant drugs have. It also effects the 5-HT2 (psychedelic) and alpha-2 adrenergic (cardiovascular) receptor sites. Also, its effects on dopamine appear, at this point, to be involved both with its neurotoxicity and psychological effects.

An account of the health risks of ecstasy may be found here

Suffice it to say that they can include death.

Total recorded drugs offences in 2004/5 numbered 142,338 with a 95% detection rate.

£3.50 is not all you might have to pay for an ecstasy tablet.

Written Source: Schott's Almanac 2006 Ben Schott Bloomsbury pg 101-105

Sorry about the huge picture but I was so excited to finally find an image of something I wanted to illustrate that I got carried away. (image removed, link provided)

MDMA ball and stick structure

45600. Sat Jan 14, 2006 12:37 pm Reply with quote
The Ecstacy of Saint Theresa is a large statue commissioned by Cardinal PatriarchFederico Conaro. The scuptor was Giovanno Lorenzo Bernini. The statue depicts a spiritual experience* which is described by Saint Theresa as follows:

"Beside me on the left appeared an angel in bodily form . . . He was not tall but short, and very beautiful; and his face was so aflame that he appeared to be one of the highest ranks of angels, who seem to be all on fire . . . In his hands I saw a great golden spear, and at the iron tip there appeared to be a point of fire. This he plunged into my heart several times so that it penetrated my entrails. When he pulled it out I felt that he took them with it, and left me utterly consumed by the great love of God. The pain was so severe that it made me utter several moans. The sweetness caused by this intense pain is so extreme that one can not possibly wish it to cease, nor is one's soul content with anything but God. This is not a physical but a spiritual pain, though the body has some share in it -- even a considerable share."

*Despite the fact that, from her description, you may be forgiven for thinking that she was actually having a good shag.

45606. Sat Jan 14, 2006 1:41 pm Reply with quote
It is well known that there are Seven Deadly Sins, the sins and their punishments are given below:

Lust: Smothered in brimstone and fire
Gluttony: Force-fed rats, toads, and snakes
Greed: Boiled in oil
Sloth: Thrown into a snake pit
Wrath: Dismembered alive
Envy: Put in freezing water
Pride: Broken on the wheel

What is less well known is that there are in total seven virtues as well. There are the four Cardinal (or philosophical) virtues

The four classic Western "cardinal" virtues are:


The four classic Islamic "cardinal" virtues are:

Shiddiq : prudence/wisdom/truthful
Tabligh : communicative
Amanah : trustworthy
Fathanah : intelligent or smart

Temperence does not mean 'abstinence from alcohol' incidentally (as the temperence movement connotations implies) but, in rather moderation in all regards.

There are also the three Christian virtues of faith hope and charity.

In Christianity, the theological virtues are faith, hope and charity, a list which comes from 1 Corinthians 13:13. These are said to perfect one's love of God and Man and therefore (since God is super-rational) to harmonize and partake of prudence.

There is an official version of the Sin vs Virtue comparison:

The Seven Virtues were derived from the Psychomachia, an epic poem written by Prudentius (c. 410). Practicing these virtues is alleged to protect one against temptation toward the Seven Deadly Sins.
The Seven Sins, with the greatest sins listed last (according to Dante's The Divine Comedy) and their opposite Seven Virtues.

Lust (undesired love) vs Chastity (purity)
Gluttony (overindulgence) vs Moderation (self-restraint)
Avarice (greed) vs Charity (giving)
Sloth (laziness) vs Zeal (enthusiasm)
Wrath (anger) vs Meekness (docility)
Envy (jealousy) vs Generosity (sharing)
Pride (vanity) vs Humility (modesty)

45616. Sat Jan 14, 2006 3:32 pm Reply with quote
Why should docility be a virtue? I don't read 'meek' as necessarily meaning 'docile'. Maybe I've just misunderstood it, but I see it as being closer to 'unassuming' or 'modest'. Similarly, I don't see humility as being the same as modesty. I'm very doubtful about chastity in the sense of purity (in the sense of complete sexual abstinence) necessarily being a virtue, though I certainly see fidelity to a partner as a virtue.

Sorry - this isn't a shot in the match, just a comment from the sidelines!

45620. Sat Jan 14, 2006 4:28 pm Reply with quote
Quiet please!

Only joshing, no problem really.

Since I'm not the author of this list (see Wiki) I'm not sure I can defend it to the hilt in the face of any criticism but I'll have a go at explaining it - what in other circumstances might be termed a 'fanwank' (interesting term that, on boards which are often prudish about any form of obscenity/profanity 'fanwank' seems to pass muster quite easily).

I can certainly think of many other forms of personal philosophy and behaviour which I would consider virtuous, but that wasn’t what I was posting about.

If you're arguing with the terminology rather than the sentiment then presumably for the opposite of 'wrath' you would prefer something like tenderness or gentility/gentleness? The list was written with Jesus in mind and I think it could be reasonably said that Jesus was meek, docile, tender and gentle. There was that one time with the money-lenders in the temple but I think it was an off-day.

If you mean that you do not accept that the opposite of wrath is necessarily a virtue would you then say that controlled aggression was?

Modesty is used alongside humility in opposition to pride and again this is probably intended as humility before God. I would agree that modesty and humility are not synonymous as humility is an acceptance of unworthiness and modesty is a deflection of praise and a rejection of self-aggrandisement.

Speaking as a male I’m sure that chastity is the opposite (or the counter anyway) to lust; this is set out as undesired love (unwanted/improper sex in other words, sex outside marriage no-doubt would formerly always have been considered a sin in these terms, but probably never sex within marriage – check out the brimstone and fire punishment for ‘sins of the flesh’).

Charity incidentally is used in the above post in two different senses. Charity as in faith, hope and charity as a theological virtue is an Old English word for love for ones’ fellow man whereas charity as used opposite avarice has the more modern meaning of fiancial giving or generosity.

45638. Sat Jan 14, 2006 6:12 pm Reply with quote
Having provided a distraction, I'd better get the game back on course.

The late Jaime, Cardinal Sin, who died on June 21st 2005, was a leading spiritual leader in the Phillipines.

The Philippines is the world's twelfth most populous country, with a population of 86,241,697 as of 2005. Roughly two-thirds reside in the island of Luzon. Manila, the capital, is the eleventh most populous metropolitan area in the world.

The Philippines is the fourth largest Roman Catholic country, the thirteenth largest Protestant country, the fortieth largest Islamic country, the seventh largest Hindu country, and the seventeenth largest Buddhist country.


45668. Sat Jan 14, 2006 8:20 pm Reply with quote
Cardinal Sin, that's even better than Bishop Spong. Where do they get these names? :D

45677. Sat Jan 14, 2006 8:58 pm Reply with quote
The cardinal bird is the official state bird of Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, North Carolina,Ohio, Virginia and West Virginia. A member of the finch family, it is also known as the red bird, the virginia nightingale and the cardinal grosbeak. Males are bright red with a black throat whilst females are buff brown with red on the crest, wing and tail.

45693. Sat Jan 14, 2006 10:26 pm Reply with quote
One of the most famous birds must be the archeopteryx (from the greek archaio= ancient en Pteryx=wing).
The first fossil of this ancient bird was found in 1961, a mere two years after Darwin published "The origin of species". The discovery sparked the debate about evolution. It was as recently as 1990 that the debate came to a conclusion when a number of well-preserved feathered dinosaurs solidified the link between dinosaurs and birds.

To this day 10 fossils of the archeopteryx have been found, all in a limestone deposit near Solnhofen, Germany.

There is a model of an archeopteryx in the Oxford university museum of natural history:


main source: wikipedia

45696. Sat Jan 14, 2006 10:47 pm Reply with quote
The cover photo of 'Band on the Run' by Paul McCartney and Wings features:

Paul McCartney, Linda McCartney, Denny Laine, Michael Parkinson, John Conteh, James Coburn, Christopher Lee, Kenny Lynch and Clement Freud.

The album was recorded in Lagos and utilised Ginger Baker's studio. Whilst there the McCartneys were threatened at knife point by Fela Kuti who was concerned that they were copying African music.

45766. Sun Jan 15, 2006 4:38 am Reply with quote
Actor James Coburn, star of The Magnificent Seven died aged 74 on Tuesday, 19 November, 2002,

James Coburn, gravel-voiced and craggy-faced, made his name playing tough guys and villains in a Hollywood career spanning more than 40 years.

The silver-haired actor first sprang to public attention in 1960 for his role as knife-throwing Britt in the epic Western The Magnificent Seven. Although he had few lines compared with co-stars like Yul Brynner and Steve McQueen, Coburn's mere screen presence grabbed the public's attention.

But it was not until much later in his career and life that his widely-acclaimed talents were finally rewarded with an Oscar. Coburn's anguished portrayal of an abusive father in Affliction earned him an Academy award for best supporting actor in 1998. It was all the more remarkable because he had overcome a 10-year struggle with arthritis that left one hand crippled.

Prior to the Magnificent Seven Coburn’s film and TV appearance credits were Face of a Fugitive (1959) Purdy, Ride Lonesome (1959) Whit and "The Nine Lives of Elfego Baca" (1958) TV Series Jack, gang leader.

After it he made a further 100 films and 1 more TV series. The films include The Great Escape, In Like Flint, Our Man Flint, Charade, Hell is for Heroes, Major Dundee, Cross of Iron, Hudson Hawk (a personal favourite), Maverick and Affliction.

45767. Sun Jan 15, 2006 8:29 am Reply with quote
The Magnificent Seven is a classic example of the way in which Hollywood can adapt an already-successful foreign film into a new movie. The film is based on the acclaimed Seven Samurai, directed by one of the most highly-regarded film directors of all time, Akira Kurosawa. His original idea was to make a film about a day in the life of a samurai, but after researching for this, he decided that he did not have enough factual information for this idea. Kurosawa then read an account of a village who had hired samurai to protect them, and decided to make a film of this instead. He wrote a complete dossier for each speaking character, detailing their clothing, speech mannerisms, biographies, what they liked to eat and any other detail he could think of for them. When the film run over budget, the production company wanted to stop the project, fearing they were making a flop, but Kurosawa went to the board of directors to convince them to carry on with the film.
One odd fact about the film: Heihachi is the first of the Seven Samurai to die in the film, but the actor who played the role, Minoru Chiaki, was the last of the actors to die, in 1999. The three samurai who survived at the end of the film, Shichiroji, Katsushiro and Kambei, were played by the first three of the actors to die in real life: Daisuke Katô (Shichiroji) died in 1975, Isao Kimura (Katsushiro) in 1981, and Takashi Shimura (Kambei) the following year.

Source: IMDb

45788. Sun Jan 15, 2006 2:50 pm Reply with quote
Akira is a Japanese Manga story by Katsuhiro Otomo that first appeared in Young Magazine in 1982. It was originally in black and white but was later issued as a 2000 page full colour comic series.

The action is set in Neo-Tokyo, a sprawling metropolis (metropolises always seem to sprawl) that arose from the ashes of the original Tokyo that had been destroyed by a super-bomb of unknown origin in WWIII. The year is 2019.

Akira is a boy who is part of a secret project dealing with people who have supernatural powers. Akira is a very powerful individual and he is kept in an isolated chamber at 0.0005 Kelvin. The project is discovered when a motorcycle gang lead by Kaneda have an accident with a little boy whose face is wrinkled as though he is an old man. The little boy is unhurt but simply vanishes from the scene. When one of the gang, Tetsuo, is taken to hospital, it is discovered that he too has supernatural powers and becomes of interest to the secret project.

A simplified version of the story was released as an Anime in 1988, directed by the author.

45793. Sun Jan 15, 2006 4:39 pm Reply with quote
Metropolis is a fictional city, home to Superman and widely believed to be based on New York. This does not mesh particularly well with another fictional comic-book city based on New York, Gotham - the older-looking home of Batman. A generic view of New York would not look like either fictional city however.

Metropolis is a fictional city that appears in comic books published by DC Comics, and is the home of Superman. Metropolis first appeared by name in Action Comics #16, in 1939.

The co-creator and original artist of Superman, Joe Shuster, modeled the Metropolis skyline after both Toronto, Ontario (where he was born), and Cleveland, Ohio (where he later lived and met co-creator Jerry Siegel in high school). Since then, however, it has become a fictional analogue of New York City.

The real town of Metropolis, Illinois, has proclaimed itself the "hometown of Superman," and celebrates its "local hero" in every possible way that it can. Among the ways it celebrates the character include a large Superman statue in the city, a small Superman museum, an annual Superman festival, and its local newspaper The Metropolis Planet, a name inspired by the major newspaper in fictional Metropolis, The Daily Planet.

Like many of DC's other fictional cities, the location of Metropolis has varied greatly over the years. Metropolis, however, is usually portrayed as a major city on the east coast of the United States.

It has been said that, metaphorically, Metropolis is New York during the day, and Gotham City (home to Batman) is New York at night; this comparison is usually attributed to Frank Miller. Longtime Batman writer and editor Dennis O'Neil also said figuratively that Metropolis is New York above 14th St., and that Gotham City is New York below 14th St. However, New York City does exist as a separate city from Metropolis and Gotham City within the comics.

A role playing game DC Universe atlas guide published by Mayfair Games claimed that Metropolis was in the state of Delaware, which DC itself has also cited on occasion.

45794. Sun Jan 15, 2006 5:19 pm Reply with quote
Gotham is a nick name for New York, first applied by Washington Irving in his work of 1807 entitled the Salmagundi Papers. The name was referenced from the Wise Men of Gotham tales.

Gotham is a town in Nottinghamshire. The story of the Wise Men is said to originate from the time of King John. The king was due to pass through the area with a view to purchasing a castle and grounds. As the expense would have fallen on the townspeople they began to behave like idiots whenever the king's representatives were about. One of their acts was to join hands around a thornbush in order to shut in a cuckoo. Not wishing to be in the company of fools the king abandoned his plan. This caused to townsfolk to remark that "We ween there are more fools pass through Gotham than remain in it."

It is noted that the inhabitants of the village of London were not wise enough to adopt this strategy to prevent themselves from being saddled with the expense of the Olympic Games.

45844. Mon Jan 16, 2006 12:06 am Reply with quote
Maybe they couldn't find a thornbush ;)

45870. Mon Jan 16, 2006 1:02 am Reply with quote
Washington Irving’s most famous tale is The Legend of Sleepy Hollow which tells of a schoolteacher (one Ichabold Crane by name) and his encounter with a ghostly horseman. The story was first published in The Sketch Book (1819-20 as Geoffrey Crayon) which also contains Irving’s Rip Van Winkle. Irving lived in Dresden, Saxony from 1822-23 and it is presumably during this period that he read Volksmärchen der Deutschen (1782-86) by Johann Karl August Musäus (b. Jena 1735; d. Weimar 1787) which served as a source of inspiration for his stories.

Irving also used [the] folktales in his short stories, among them The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. "The headless horseman was often seen here. An old man who did not believe in ghosts told of meeting the headless horseman coming from his trip into the Hollow. The horseman made him climb up behind. They rode over bushes, hills, and swamps. When they reached the bridge, the horseman suddenly turned into a skeleton. He threw the old man into the brook and sprang away over the treetops with a clap of thunder." The story was probably based on a story by Karl Musäus (1735-1787), a[n] academic writer, who was among the first to collect local folktales.

45906. Mon Jan 16, 2006 11:43 am Reply with quote
It seems a bit early for a smash, but I'll try to get a winning shot in anyways:

The tales of the brothers Grimm are surely folktales. Their main inspiration were the tales of the older population of germany they had to listnen to. I say had, since it was an order from their professor of (roman) law, Friedrich Karl Von Savigny.

Savigny is a very important figure for those who want to study the history of law. He was the one who sparked the reinterpretation of roman law. It was only with him that universities started the critical research of their roman sources again.
I won't list his accomplishments, but one might say that without him, people like Mommsen would never be involved in roman law.

I think that's the winning shot, could a referee confirm?

45917. Mon Jan 16, 2006 2:08 pm Reply with quote
Without doubt a winner iluphade, you to serve again.

QI Moderator
560549.  Wed May 27, 2009 6:04 pm Reply with quote

General QQ Round 15

45926. Mon Jan 16, 2006 2:58 pm Reply with quote
Túpac Amaru II was the hero of the peruvian struggle for independance. He was the grandson of the last true leader of the inca's, Tupac Amaru, and was born under the name of José Gabriel Condorcanqui.

At first he was, like his brother, a pawn of the spanish colonists. However, as his struggle for the rights of his people had no avail, he started organizing a rebellion. He started dressing in the old incan ways, and took his grandfather's name. He killed the governor Antonio de Arriaga of Tinta in 1780.
The rebellion was supressed, and Amaru was forced to watch the execution of most of his family, after which he himself was executed by being drawn and quartered on the main plaza of Cuzco. This was the same place his grandfather was beheaded. Only his 11 year old son Fernando survived. He had been convicted to die alongside his father, but was taken to spain instead. The revolt continued, and as a result the spaniards outlawed everything that could be associated with Incan culture.

45941. Mon Jan 16, 2006 3:33 pm Reply with quote
Tupac Amaru Shakur (born June 16, 1971 in Brooklyn, New York City, New York as Lesane Parish Crooks – died September 13, 1996 in Las Vegas, Nevada) was an American hip hop artist, poet, and actor. He is considered by many to be one of the most revolutionary, popular and legendary rappers of all time.

"Tupac Amaru" was not his original given name, nor one he chose himself; his mother re-named him shortly after birth, and had his birth certificate changed to reflect it.

More of Shakur recordings have been released posthumously than while he was alive, although there are doubts as to whether he would have considered many of them to be worthy of release. Rights to his music are now owned by Amaru Entertainment, which is controlled by his mother Afeni, and artist royalties are assigned to the Tupac Foundation, which has used the revenue to build the Tupac Amaru Shakur Center for the Arts in Stone Mountain, Georgia. His mother has said that getting Tupac into a Harlem arts program as a teenager saved him from drugs, and the new center will have a similar philosophy.

45944. Mon Jan 16, 2006 3:36 pm Reply with quote
Tupac Shakur (also known as 2Pac) was born Lesane Parish Crooks on 16th June 1971 in Brooklyn New York. His mother, Afeni Shakur changed his name to Tupac Shakur. 'Tupac' means 'shining serpent' and is taken from the Native American tribe whilst 'Shakur' means 'thankful to God'.

Tupac studied acting and ballet at the Baltimore School of Performing Arts before becoming a rapper. His 1996 album 'All Eyes On Me' has sold over 9 million copies and spawned the singles 'California Love' and 'How Do U Want It'.

2Pac was the victim of a drive-by shooting on Sep 7th 1996 after attending a boxing match in Las Vegas. It is believed (though with no firm evidence) that Tupac was the victim of a gang war between the Bloods and the Crips and that one of the people that had a hand in his murder was Christopher Wallace aka Biggie Smalls aka the Notorious B.I.G. Tupac had claimed to have had an affair with Small's wife Faith Evans.

The Notorious B.I.G. was also murdered in similar circumstances on March 9th 1997 in Los Angeles.

2Pac's death hasn't hurt his recording career as he has had more albums released since he died than he ever did before hand.

Last edited by djgordy on Mon Jan 16, 2006 3:39 pm; edited 1 time in total

45945. Mon Jan 16, 2006 3:38 pm Reply with quote
Drat! Beat me to it. I shouldn't have taken time out to check the date of Biggie Small's death.

Quaintly Ignorant
49617. Tue Feb 07, 2006 3:34 am Reply with quote
Looks like we're stuck again. OK...

People who enjoyed more success posthumously:

Emily Dickinson – poet
In her adult life, she was a recluse who only rarely ventured out of her house. However, during her lifetime, only seven of her short, haunting, innovative poems were published. It was only after her death that volumes of her writings were discovered, and it was not until 1890, four years after she died, that the first collection of her work was published.

Vincent (Willem) van Gogh – artist
Van Gogh sold only one painting, Red Vineyard at Arles, during his lifetime. He was little known to the art world at the time of his death, but his paintings became famous after he died. He had a significant impact on Expressionism, Fauvism and early abstraction, as well as other aspects of 20th-century art. He only started painting in the last 10 years of his life, and that he was so upset by his condition of epilepsy, that he took his own life at 47.

Christopher Columbus – explorer
Columbus did not really discover America. People were living in America before Columbus arrived, but he was the first explorer in recorded history to cross the Atlantic Ocean. He did not know he had found a new continent and thought he had reached the Indies. He didn't enjoy fame during his lifetime.

Johann Sebastian Bach – composer
He composed for the glory of God and his own pleasure. Bach was more famous for his harpsichord and organ playing than his composing. He was not famous as a compositor during his life, only further generations discovered his genius.

King “Tut” Tutankhamun – The boy king
Thirty centuries after his death, the boy-king, Tut, became a far greater legend than he had been in his own time.

Everyone from the holy books
Well, considering the bible/torah/koran is the best selling book of all time mentions should go to Jesus/Mohammed/Moses and their crowds.

Of course there are many more, too many to mention:

Joan of Arc
Anne Frank
Robert Louis Stevenson
John Steinbeck
George Bernard Shaw
Marilyn Monroe
Martin Luther King, Jr.
Malcolm X
John Lennon
Jimi Hendrix
Janis Joplin
Buddy Holly
Bruce Lee
Brandon Lee
John F Kennedy

Plenty there for the next player to sink their teeth into.

49619. Tue Feb 07, 2006 6:18 am Reply with quote
Quite a lot of people on that list also enjoyed considerable success prehumously as well :)

49623. Tue Feb 07, 2006 11:24 am Reply with quote
Who'd ever heard of John Doe before his untimely death?

50029. Thu Feb 09, 2006 7:30 pm Reply with quote
Jyllands-Posten, the newspaper that printed the infamous Mohammed cartoons supported the Conservative party in 1938 and has not been afraid of controversy. Like many European papers in 1920s and 1930s., the paper openly supported the rise of Fascism. They supported both Benito Mussolini's rise to power and Denmark's introduction of dictatorship.
Ironically the paper was reluctant to publish cartoons of Jesus some years before the Muhammad cartoons.

50044. Thu Feb 09, 2006 8:26 pm Reply with quote
Off subject but how can a book be considered Posthumous?

50047. Thu Feb 09, 2006 8:33 pm Reply with quote
If I wrote a boook now, had it accepted for publication, but then died just before the launch party... I'd be furious

50187. Fri Feb 10, 2006 3:19 pm Reply with quote
If it's ghost-written?

50358. Fri Feb 10, 2006 9:10 pm Reply with quote
Kevino7 wrote:
Off subject but how can a book be considered Posthumous?

If it's published after the author has died

50360. Fri Feb 10, 2006 9:41 pm Reply with quote
Then the author is Posthumous, not the book itself.

Quaintly Ignorant
50377. Fri Feb 10, 2006 10:05 pm Reply with quote
But the author may still fall under the category:

People who enjoyed more success posthumously:

51242. Tue Feb 14, 2006 7:39 pm Reply with quote
No one carrying this thing on?

51254. Tue Feb 14, 2006 7:54 pm Reply with quote
Feel free, Kevino...

51260. Tue Feb 14, 2006 7:59 pm Reply with quote
I can't hit my own shot back. Is there a limit before a hgme is ended.

51265. Tue Feb 14, 2006 8:03 pm Reply with quote
Good point - I'd lost track of the fact that you made the last shot. The game ends when somebody links (after ten shots) the previous post to the first post in the game. I'd have to scroll back to find out what that was...

51266. Tue Feb 14, 2006 8:05 pm Reply with quote
A indian called Tupac

51272. Tue Feb 14, 2006 8:08 pm Reply with quote
Also anything to do with Peru and a struggle for independence.

Any links with Denmark there? If not, somebody needs to make another shot linked with the post about the Jyllands Posten and the Muhammad cartoons.

51308. Tue Feb 14, 2006 9:21 pm Reply with quote
Jezus has been a favourite amongst satirists all over the world for quite a while now. Some people go further however. Saramago, the great nobelprize-winning Portuguese author, wrote a book called: "O EVANGELHO SEGUNDO JESUS CHRISTO". The book was nominated for the European Union literary contest. However, Sousa Lara then Under-Secretary of the State of Portugal, had it scrapped from the list of contenders. However, after wide international protest it was put back on the list.
sidenote: indirect connection with censorship
In the book Saramago tells the story of Jezus, from his birth untill his death. The focus of the book however lays on the struggle of this Jezus with God, the strategy of this God, and it's special relationship with the devil.
This book has been called "the bible of atheïsts"; however, as an athest myself¨I strongly disagree. But that doesn't change the fact that it is a must-read. It proposes a clear view on humanity, on the strength of certain inalienable instincts; and as a surprise, it even mentions the saint of the very small town I was raised in. (Along with a list of many other saints, and their respective deaths. To those who wanted that part to remain a surprise, I apologise.)

I think there is more than plenty of information to warrant a decent volley

52104. Thu Feb 16, 2006 10:00 pm Reply with quote
American Athiests is a civil rights group in the United States that aims to protect the aims of Athiests and supports the seperation of Church and State.

Interestingly they advocated John Kerry, a Catholic in the 2004 Presidental Election.

52107. Thu Feb 16, 2006 10:01 pm Reply with quote
Well, look at the alternative ;)

56995. Sun Mar 05, 2006 12:24 am Reply with quote
In Germany the Church of Scientology is classified as a business enterprise subject to taxation, rather than a religious community entitled to tax exemptions.

57073. Sun Mar 05, 2006 2:06 pm Reply with quote
In Germany, for tax purposes you can either be a resident or a non-resident. If you have been present in Germany for over 183 days in the last year, you are generally considered to be a resident for tax purposes. The 183 day rule is not the only consideration for tax residence - see your embassy's website or talk to a tax consultant or accountant.

If you are a non-resident for tax purposes (for instance a short term contractor), you will generally still be liable to pay tax on German-sourced income. The rate may vary; tax and double taxation agreements may alter it.

There are 6 tax classes that you may fall into, each one with varying rates:

Those single or separated, but not falling into either categories 2 or 3.
Single and separated, with a child, entitling them to a child's allowance.
Married, or widowed employees who are within the first year of a spouse's death.
Married employees both receiving income.
Married persons who would normally fall into category 4, but whose spouse is in tax class 3.
Employees who receive income from other employment on one or more different tax cards.
On top of this, you may either be a salaried employee (as most people are) or a Freiberufler (free professional, for instance doctors, architects, or contractors). For salaried employees, tax and social insurance are withheld by the employer. Contractors must pay the tax department their tax obligations regularly throughout the year.

72623. Sun Jun 04, 2006 3:51 am Reply with quote
Fernando Morientes the Spanish Striker recently (May 25) signed for Valencia, due to his poor form for Liverpool he has not been included in the Spanish Squad for the 2006 World Cup in Germany. In the last World Cup in Japan and Korea he scored four goals for Spain.

This is the 10th 'shot' post in the thread and that is, I believe, a winning shot. My first in fact. I'm going to start QQ16 anyway so there.

General QQ Round 15 Commentary

46144. Tue Jan 17, 2006 9:44 am Reply with quote
May a lowly unseeded tyro enquire whether the sound of one doorway filling (while steel grinds slowly into shellac) does not require an intervention by the Qumpire? Qong Qong is tricky enough but surely Qong Qong Doh should not be left for players to resolve by themselves?

54206. Wed Feb 22, 2006 1:23 am Reply with quote
I agree (but I don't know what on Quingly Heck you're talking about!) LOL.

QI Moderator
560550.  Wed May 27, 2009 6:10 pm Reply with quote

General QQ Round 16

72625. Sun Jun 04, 2006 5:12 am Reply with quote
Today is Angelina Jolie's Birthday (June 4 1975).

Exactly a week ago on May 27, 2006, Jolie gave birth to the couple's third child, a daughter named Shiloh Nouvel Jolie-Pitt, at night at the Cottage Medi-Clinic Hospital in Swakopmund, Namibia.

Born in Los Angeles, California, Jolie is the daughter of actors Jon Voight and Marcheline Bertrand. She is the niece of Chip Taylor and the goddaughter of Jacqueline Bisset and Maximilian Schell. She has been estranged from her father for some time and has said she is uninterested in any reconciliation.

Her tattoos include:

* the letter H (for her brother James Haven) on the inside of her left wrist.
* "A prayer for the wild at heart, kept in cages" (Tennessee Williams) on her left forearm.
* a large prayer for her son Maddox on her left shoulder which covers up the Chinese "death" tattoo.
* two pointy black tribals on the lower parts of her back.
* Quod me nutrit me destruit (Latin for "What nourishes me also destroys me") several inches below her navel, became prominent after her pregnancy announcement.
* a tilted Latin cross on the lower left of her abdomen.
* a large Asian tiger on her back.
* a dragon under the tiger.
* XIII (number 13 in Roman numerals) on her left forearm.
* Arabic for "strength of will." (العزيمة) on her right forearm.
* "know your rights" just under her neck between her shoulders.


* a dragon on her left arm (she has been lasering it for some months now but it can still be faintly seen).
* "Billy Bob", the name of her former husband Billy Bob Thornton, on her left arm (like the dragon, it is still somewhat visible despite having been in the process of removal for a long time).
* a Chinese character for courage now covered by the Tennessee Williams quote.
* a Chinese character for death (死) now covered by the prayer for her son.
* a tattoo both Billy Bob Thornton and Angelina had a copy of. It was on her right forearm, now covered by the "strength of will" tattoo.
* a dragon she got in Amsterdam while drunk, now covered by the Latin cross.
* a window on her lower back. On 'Inside the Actors Studio', she explained that she covered this tattoo, because, while she used to spend all of her time staring through windows wishing to be outside, she now lives there all of the time.

72626. Sun Jun 04, 2006 8:32 am Reply with quote
Shiloh near Tenessee was the site of the first major Battle of the American Civil War on April 6th and 7th 1862.

With the Confederate run railway system in nearby Corinth it was a battle they really needed to win and 44,000 of their troops tried to keep out the 65,000 Union troops in vain.

The Union troops eventually took Siloh and seized control of the railway at Corinth with a heavy losses to both sides, over 24,000 men missing or killed in 2 days.

Dr. Know
72644. Sun Jun 04, 2006 10:55 am Reply with quote
it may interest you to know (if you dont already as im sure alot of you are quite intelligent) that the great escape wasn't really that great. only 3 made it to safety. most of them were rounded up or killed. one man escaped by train, and the other two escaped in the same way but i dont remeber what it was.

72660. Sun Jun 04, 2006 2:42 pm Reply with quote
The events of the film are quite accurate (the plane stolen by James Garner and Donald Pleasance and Steve McQueen's motorbike chase are inventions) but the identities of the people are not their true ones.

Of 76 men, only three were able to evade capture, Norwegians Per Bergsland and Jens Mûller, and the Dutchman Bram van der Stok. Mûller and Bergsland made it to neutral Sweden while van der Stok travelled the European countryside before finding safety in the British consulate in Spain.

There are two notable stories concerning escape from Stalag Luft III. One is depicted in the film The Wooden Horse and the other in The Great Escape. The sandy subsoil and the use of seismographic microphones made tunnels easily detectable unless suitable precautions were taken. Up to 1943 there had been 30 failed tunneling attempts.

74597. Wed Jun 14, 2006 6:15 pm Reply with quote
History of the Channel Tunnel
The Channel Tunnel project had one of the longest gestation periods in history - its ideas, plans, and efforts span well over two centuries. And, it may be the best example and most complex one where technology issues were integrated with those related to quality of life. Its challenges included overcoming the technological issues, gaining consensus among the politicians, overcoming the concerns of the British military, and obtaining finance.

The following is a brief summary of this history:

Concept of a first, all weather Channel crossing first suggested, when the Amiens Academy held a competition to find a new means of crossing the Channel.
A tunnel for horse-drawn traffic was proposed by Albert Mathieu, a mining engineer in the Department du Nord following the signing of the Treaty of Amiens.
The first systematic geological and hydrographic survey of the Channel was undertaken by Thome du Gamond.
Du Gamond produced 8 major tube, bridge and tunnel designs.
Du Gamond's last scheme for a tunnel.
W.Low and J. Brunlees proposed a scheme for twin tunnels linked by cross-passages.
Low and Du Gamond worked on a revised scheme which was submitted before a British Channel Tunnel Committee.
The committee gave the go-ahead for two pilot tunnels.
The English Channel Tunnel Company was formed to promote a scheme designed by J.C. Hawkshaw. It was only at this time that the schemes began to be designed considering the available technology of the time.
An Anglo-French commission signed a protocol on the Channel Tunnel.
E.W. Watkin promoted Low's scheme and work began at Abbot's Cliff with the excavation of a 7 foot diameter tunnel under the direction of F. Brady, using an early (Beaumont) tunnelling machine, which completed 840 yards. It was the moved to Shakespeare Cliff where it completed a tunnel of 2020 yards under the sea towards Dover harbour.
Military opposition in England to the construction of the Channel Tunnel became very vocal and construction stopped in 1883.
The first mineable coal in Kent was proven from the Shakespeare cliff site.
The Channel Tunnel Company and l'Association du Chemin le Fer Sous-Marin entre La France et l'Angleterre proposed a new scheme consisting of two 20 foot diameter tunnels for electrical rail traffic following Brady's tunnel alignment.
The Channel Tunnel Company published a new report on the geology and propose that a pilot tunnel be driven. Under the supervision of P. C. Tempest a new experimental heading using a 12 foot diameter Whitaker tunnelling machine drove a 490 foot long trial heading in the Folkestone Warren.
A British Royal commission was set up to study the matter. Two tunnel schemes from the Channel Tunnel Company and a rival bid from the London and Paris Railway were discussed. The latter included a new rail route from London to Paris via the Channel tunnel. The Channel Tunnel Company proposed a smaller pilot tunnel and two 18 foot 6 inch, 36 mile long tunnels, of which 24 miles would be beneath the sea. Half would be constructed by British and half by French companies, taking an estimated 6.5 years.
The Imperial Defence Committee declared against the project.
All of the previous schemes had essentially been halted by British military opposition, however, by 1956 military opposition to the tunnel was minimal.
The Channel Tunnel Study Group was formed.
The first comprehensive geological site investigation was undertaken.
A White Paper was published which supported a scheme with twin rail tunnels.
Further marine surveys were carried out.
A further site investigation was undertaken.
The Channel Tunnel project began at the Shakespeare Cliff site with the excavation of two inclined headings and an erection chamber for a Priestley tunnelling machine. A 250m test section was completed.
The project was again cancelled.
Margaret Thatcher and Francois Mitterrand announced their support for the project.
A Channel Tunnel Bill was given Royal Assent.
Further marine and land site investigations were undertaken.
The first tunnelling machine in the marine Service Tunnel began excavation in December and this broke through to the equivalent French tunnel on December 1st 1990.
Breakthrough of the two Running Tunnels.
Opened for passenger traffic.

QI Individual
74621. Wed Jun 14, 2006 7:55 pm Reply with quote
Is there anything left of these earlier pilot tunnels?

74636. Wed Jun 14, 2006 9:30 pm Reply with quote
Whilst it is not accessible, the 1880 tunnel still exists:

74877. Thu Jun 15, 2006 5:57 pm Reply with quote
The Seikan Tunnel (青函トンネル Seikan Tonneru or 青函隧道 Seikan Zuidō) is a 53.85 km (33.49 mile) railway tunnel in Japan, with a 23.3 km (14.5 mile) portion under the seabed. It travels beneath the Tsugaru Strait — connecting Aomori Prefecture on the Japanese island of Honshu and the island of Hokkaido — as part of the Japan Railways Kaikyo Line.

The high speed and low cost of air travel has however meant the Seikan Tunnel is underexploited. This is currently the longest railway tunnel in the world and indeed the longest tunnel of any kind but the Gotthard Base Tunnel in Switzerland, currently under construction with a planned completion date of 2012, will then be the world's longest tunnel at a length of 35 miles (57 km). The Channel Tunnel is currently the world's second longest but has the longest section under the seabed.

74931. Thu Jun 15, 2006 11:23 pm Reply with quote
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle thought that he had gotten rid of Sherlock Holmes. He killed him off in The Final Problem, in The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes. Doyle was tired of Holmes, and wanted to get on to serious writing. So, at Reichenbach Falls, Switzerland, Holmes had a final confrontation with Moriarty, they wrestled at the edge of the cliff, and they both fell to their deaths into the falls. Watson deduces that, since neither Holmes nor Moriarty came back down the only path from the falls, then both must have died. The end.

But, the public, and Doyle's publishers, had not had enough of Sherlock Holmes. And Doyle reluctantly brought him back to life. In The Return of Sherlock Holmes: The Adventure of the Empty House, we find that Holmes had survived the fight at Reichenbach Falls. He had rock-climbed up the cliff, and that is why he didn't come back down the path from the falls.

74959. Fri Jun 16, 2006 12:59 am Reply with quote
Baron Dr. Carl (Karl) Ludwig von Reichenbach (full name: Baron Karl Ludwig Freiherr von Reichenbach) (February 12, 1788 - January 19, 1869) was a recognized chemist, metallurgist, naturalist and philosopher, a member of the prestigious Prussian Academy of Sciences. He is best known for his discoveries of kerosene (essential to rocket fuels), paraffin (a waxy solid added to many foods), and phenol (an antiseptic and anesthetic, used against sore throats).

Baron von Reichenbach developed the concept of Odic force during the 1850s in his Researches on Magnetism, Electricity, Heat and Light in their relations to Vital Forces. His claims included that his Odic force had a positive and negative flux, and a light and dark side. Individuals could supposedly "emanate" it, particularly from the hands, mouth, and forehead. He believed it had other uses, and that for example crystals could store it within themselves as "crystalod". Von Reichenbach hoped to develop a scientific proof for a universal life force, but since his experiments relied on allegedly psychically sensitive and psycho-kinetically adept individuals, it never acquired currency in the general scientific community.

Is it just me or does this picture make him look like Stephen Fry?

74985. Fri Jun 16, 2006 8:34 am Reply with quote
It's just you.

74995. Fri Jun 16, 2006 9:53 am Reply with quote
Yep. Doesn't look much like Stephen Fry to me, either.

74999. Fri Jun 16, 2006 10:20 am Reply with quote
OK then, glad we've sorted that out.

75653. Tue Jun 20, 2006 9:51 am Reply with quote
Constantin Carathéodory (Greek: Κωνσταντίνος Καραθεοδωρή) (September 13, 1873 – February 2, 1950) was a Greek mathematician of the Modern Era. He made significant contributions to the theory of functions of a real variable, the calculus of variations, and measure theory. His work also includes important results in conformal representations and in the theory of boundary correspondence.

In 1920 Carathéodory accepted a post in the University of Smyrna, invited by Prime Minister Eleftherios Venizelos. He took a major part in establishing the institution, but his efforts ended in 1922 when the Greek population was expelled from the city during the Greco-Turkish War.

Having been forced to move to Athens, Carathéodory brought along with him some of the university library, thus saving it from destruction. He stayed at Athens and taught at the university and technical school until 1924.

In 1924 Carathéodory was appointed professor of mathematics at the University of Munich, and he held this position until his death in 1950.

Carathéodory formulated the axiomatic principle of irreversibility in thermodynamics in 1909, stating that inaccessibility of states is related to the existence of entropy, where temperature is the integration function.

1926 he gave a strict and general proof, that no system of lenses and mirrors can avoid aberration, except for the trivial case of plane mirrors.

Among other accomplishments, one should mention Carathéodory's remarkable talent for languages. In addition to Greek and French as native languages, he published most of his works in German and also fluently spoke English, Italian and Turkish. Such an impressive linguistic arsenal enabled him to communicate and exchange ideas directly with other mathematicians during his numerous travels, and greatly extend his fields of knowledge.

He is credited with the theories of outer measure, and prime ends, amongst other mathematical results.

More recently, on December 19, 2005 Israeli officials along with Israel' ambassador to Athens, Ram Aviram presented to the Greek foreign ministry with copies of 10 letters between Albert Einstein and Constantin Carathéodory [Karatheodoris] that suggest that the work of Carathéodory help shape some of Albert Einstein's theories. The letters were part of a long correspondence which lasted from 1916 to 1930. Aviram said that according to experts at the National Archives of Israel - custodians of the original letters - the mathematical side of Einstein's physics theory was partly substantiated through the work of Carathéodory. He was accepted into the Prussian Academy of Sciences in Berlin in 1919.

75708. Tue Jun 20, 2006 2:19 pm Reply with quote
You little tinker! There I was reading through the above post thinking 'this is interesting but what's the link' only to find it right at the end.

Nice one.

Groucho and Harpo Marx both conducted extensive correspondence with President Harry Truman. Groucho in fact was a prolific letter writer and reader, some have said that this was because of his lack of formal education but I prefer to say that it was in spite of it.

Groucho is famous for, amongst other things, quotes commenting on literacy

From the moment I picked your script up to the moment I set it down I was convulsed with laughter. Some-day I intend on reading it.

and one regarding a performance of the Mikado which I've already posted on these boards.

Harpo, despite writing much of the Marx brothers material (even the good stuff potentially) was not, it seems, renowned for his wit

Alexander Woollcott was amused by Harpo Marx's battered car.
"This is my town car," said Harpo.
"And the town is Pompeii," replied Woollcott.

Last edited by Celebaelin on Sun Aug 26, 2007 1:39 pm; edited 2 times in total

75713. Tue Jun 20, 2006 2:54 pm Reply with quote
Truman Capote the writer was a friend of his Monroeville neighbour Harper Lee. He based the character of Idabel in his book Other Voices Other Rooms on Lee, and Lee in turn used Capote as the template for her character Dill Harris in To kill a Mockingbird

75718. Tue Jun 20, 2006 3:26 pm Reply with quote
Philip Seymour Hoffman played Truman Capote in the 2005 film Capote. He gained great recognition for the role receiving the Los Angeles Film Critics Award as Best Actor in 2005. In 2006 he was awarded the Best Actor Oscar for the same role. He has appeared in many popular films, the first time I recall seeing him was in Scent of a Woman with Al Pacino and Chris O'Donnell.

75896. Tue Jun 20, 2006 11:22 pm Reply with quote
Philip II (Spanish: Felipe II de Habsburgo; Portuguese: Filipe I) (May 21, 1527 – September 13, 1598) was the first official King of Spain from 1556 until 1598, king of Naples and Sicily from 1554 until 1598, King of England (co-regent with Mary I) from 1554 to 1558, King of Portugal and the Algarves (as Philip I) from 1580 until 1598 and King of Chile from 1554 until 1556. He was born at Valladolid and was the only legitimate son of Holy Roman Emperor Charles V and Isabella, the daughter of king Manuel I of Portugal, to survive childhood.

75996. Wed Jun 21, 2006 3:59 pm Reply with quote
When he became Pope John XXI, Pedro Giuliano, often known as Peter of Spain became the first and so far only Portuguese pope. He was killed nine months after his election when the ceiling of his library at Viterbo fell on him.

76000. Wed Jun 21, 2006 4:10 pm Reply with quote
Salvatore Giuliano (November 16, 1922 – July 5/6, 1950) was a Sicilian bandit, black marketeer, and right-wing nationalist, who has been mythologized after his death.

On September 2, 1943, he killed a Sicilian carabiniere at a checkpoint near Quattro Molini while transporting stolen grain. He left his identity papers at the scene and was wounded when another officer shot him as he was running away. His family sent him to Palermo to have the bullet removed. In late December, a number of residents of Montelepre, including Giuliano's father, were arrested during a police raid. Giuliano helped some of them escape from prison in Monreale, and a number of the freed men stayed with him.

In the Sagana mountains, Giuliano collected a gang of bandits, criminals, deserters, homeless, and outlaws under his leadership. He gave the approximately fifty men military-style training in marksmanship. The gang took to robbery and burglary for the money they needed for food and weapons. When carabinieri came to look for them, they were met with accurate submachinegun fire.

He also joined a Sicilian nationalist group, the MIS, with close ties to the Mafia and led small-scale attacks on government and police targets in the name of this movement. His actions continued post-war, and he supported the MIS and the similar MASCA with funds for the 1946 elections, in which both groups did poorly.

Reputedly, Giuliano himself would have liked to have seen Sicily become a state within the United States of America. He sent president Harry S. Truman a letter where he urged him to annex Sicily.

Giuliano also fostered a number of myths around himself. One tale tells how he found out that a postal worker was stealing letters that contained money that Sicilian families had sent to their relatives in the USA; he killed the postal worker and assured that the letters continued to their correct destination. When he robbed the duchess of Pratameno, he left her with her wedding ring and borrowed a book she was reading; he returned it later with compliments. He fostered cooperation of poor tenant farmers by sending them money and food.

In 1947 with his group steadily shrinking he turned to kidnapping for ransom and turned regular profits. Also in that year there were more elections, following a limited victory for socialist-communist groups. On May 1 Giuliano led his remaining men on a raid to Portella Della Ginestra, intending to capture prominent communist Girolamo Li Causi. However, the event turned into a massacre when he and his men opened fire on the labor parade. Eleven civilians, including woman and three children, were killed and over thirty wounded. Historians are unsure as to whether the massacre was deliberate.

76020. Wed Jun 21, 2006 5:27 pm Reply with quote
Robert Anthony Salvatore (born January 20, 1959) is a science-fiction and fantasy author best known for his Forgotten Realms and Star Wars novels.

Robert Salvatore was born in Leominster, Massachusetts. During his time at Fitchburg State College, he became interested in literature, particularly fantasy, after reading J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings, given to him by a friend while in high school. He earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Communications from his university, and later returned to receive a Bachelor of Arts in English.

In 1982 he started writing more seriously, developing a manuscript he titled Echoes of the Fourth Magic. He went on to publish several series of books in the Forgotten Realms campaign world, while lately his popularity surged due to his Demon Wars sagas and his two Star Wars books.

One of his most popular characters is Drizzt Do'Urden, a drow, or dark elf, portrayed against the stereotypes of his race, who fights for what he believes is right.

In addition to his novels, Salvatore wrote the story for the PS2 and Xbox video game Forgotten Realms: Demon Stone (2004), working with the design team at Stormfront Studios. The game was published by Atari and was nominated for awards by the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences and BAFTA.

Salvatore is a New York Times bestselling author.




76048. Wed Jun 21, 2006 6:51 pm Reply with quote
Leominster lies in the heart of the Marches, the beautiful and historic borderlands of England and Wales. The town dates from the 7th Century, and its name (pronounced Lemster) may derive from Leofric, Earl of Hereford and husband to Lady Godiva.The town's strategic position has made it vulnerable to attack, and it was held by both the Welsh and the Danes before being taken for Edward the Confessor by Harold Godwinson (later King Harold). In 1461 the decisive battle of the Wars of the Roses, the battle of Mortimers Cross, took place a few miles from the town.

Despite the area's turbulent history, Leominster prospered in the medieval period. The town's wealth arose primarily from the wool trade, owing to the superlative quality of the wool of its local Ryeland sheep. The fleeces came to be known as 'Lempster Ore' (Leominster Gold).

Dr. Know
76071. Wed Jun 21, 2006 8:25 pm Reply with quote
i remeber glancing at a history channel programme about a theoretical "submerged floating tunnel" that with trillions of pounds of funds could potentially get from london to newyork in 50 minutes. it floats, but is tethered to the sea floor so it stays underwater. it reduces friction because it runs on magnets, and if a leak shoud occur, the train will have passed it in a nanosecond. i think it would be cool, but a monumentous waste of money.

76114. Thu Jun 22, 2006 4:11 am Reply with quote
Leofric and Godiva (or Godgifu gift of God) were certainly historical characters, he was Earl of Mercia (title awarded 1017 by Canute) and he relocated from Shropshire to Coventry according to some accounts although Wiki says he was born in Staffordshire. There's loads of tedious stuff about building churches and the such like but we all know what the really QI thing about Leofric was - his tasty second wife who invented the equestrian-assisted streak for tax purposes.

There is, as you might imagine, some doubt as to whether this actually happened, and if it did whether it was Leofric's Godiva who was involved. The tale might have arisen as a result of an act of penitence on the part of Godiva.

It was customary at that time for penitents to make a public procession in only their shift—a sleeveless white garment similar to a slip today, and one which was certainly considered "underwear". Godiva may have repented of her harshness, traveled through town as a penitent, her people witnessing their feared landlady humilated in her shift. Thus, scholars speculate, Godiva's story may have passed into folk history to be recorded in a rather, but not substantially, romanticized version.

The bit about the long hair and the Peeping Tom are almost certainly later embelishments.

That said there are two pubs in and around Coventry called the Peeping Tom to my certain knowledge and Lady Godiva is commemorated by a statue and a very slightly naughty clock to name but two.

She is mentioned in the Domesday survey of 1085, as one of the few Anglo-Saxons to retain land after the conquest, and the only woman mentioned as a landholder. She probably died a few years later and was buried in one of the porches of the abbey church. Dugdale (1656) says that a window, with representations of Leofric and Godiva, was placed in Trinity Church, Coventry, about the time of Richard II.

Coventry being the centre of sophistication that it is does not allow nude women to ride horses around the streets anymore so the Godiva procession must make do as best it can.,_Earl_of_Mercia

Last edited by Celebaelin on Sun Jun 25, 2006 4:53 am; edited 1 time in total

76393. Fri Jun 23, 2006 3:28 pm Reply with quote
Rather unbelievingly but still quite interestingly St George was perhaps Coventry born.
In particular the legend of The Seven Champions of Christendom went into print, recounting the valiant deeds of St George and six other saints. By the seventeenth and eighteenth century, versions of the story are appearing as scenes in plays or chapters in Chap books. In many of these stories St George's birthplace is no longer Cappadocia, but Coventry. George's father is Lord Albert, an English peer and George's birth takes place at Caludan Castle in Wyken, Coventry. As a young man George travels to Egypt and slaughters a dragon whilst rescuing a princess. In some versions he marries the princess and they return to Coventry. They have three sons, one of whom becomes Guy of Warwick.
George's dragon slaying days continue after his wife dies. He journeys to Jerusalem and on his return slays another dragon. This particular slaying takes place on Dunsmore Heath in Warwickshire. The adventure however proved fatal. One eighteenth century chapbook indicates that the vast amount of poison thrown upon him by the beast "so infected his vital spitals that............he died".
A second story has George coming back from his travels to save the people of Coventry from a great Dragon which was residing in a cavern under present day, Hill Top. In this battle George sustained severe injuries, whilst routing the beast. He later died and was buried in state in Coventry.

There used to be a procession to celebrate his life, until the good people of Coventry decided they would rather have a nude woman (or at least a pretending to be nude woman) atop a horse parading their streets. The figure of St George is usually still present though.

76595. Sun Jun 25, 2006 12:12 am Reply with quote
Well I'm going to have to talk about Nestor of Cappadocia again, largely because previously I've left out the bit about the confusion over the identity of the historical St. George the Victorious. A previouly listed web source which seems to be unavailable now mentioned this confusion IIRC but the gist of it seems to be that elements of the stories of two related martyrs St. Demetrios and St. Nestor appear to perhaps be present as part of the legend of St George and also in the story of his martyrdom.

If for 'Dragon' you read pagan 'wrestler' (?gladiator?), and don't tell me they're different unless you believe in dragons, and then look at the descriptions of the deaths of first Demetrios and then Nestor the following day there do seem to be commonalities with certain other gruesome details thrown in for good measure.

The piercing of St. Demetrios with the spear releasing blood and water is also in the story of St. George.

The final decapitation of St. Nestor is St. George's ultimate fate.

St. Demetrios along with St. George are the two brave lads of Christianity. These two are below on earth, and the two Archangels Michael and Gabriel are above in heaven.

In ancient times there were painted without armor, but in later years they were depicted armored with swords and spears and dressed in metal breastplates. On one shoulder they have their helmet hanging, and on the other their shield. At the waist they are girded with the straps which hold the sheath of the sword and the quiver which has in the arrows and the bow. In recent years, after the conquest of Constantinople, these two saints, and many times other soldier satins also, are painted as riding horses, St. George on a white horse, St. Demetrios on a red one.

This armor which these Saints wear, depicts spiritual weapons, like those of which the holy Apostle Paul speaks saying, "Put on the armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For our wrestling is not against flesh and blood, but against the Principalities and the Powers, against the world rulers of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness on high. Therefore take up the armor of God that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and stand in all things perfect.

This from the account of St. Demetrios
In those days, there reigned in Rome Diocletian, and he had appointed as caesar in the parts of Macedonia and the East a hard-hearted and bloodthirsty general who was called Maximian, a beast in human form as were all those military rulers (polemarchs) who then ruled the world with the sword: Diocletian, Maxentius, Maximian, Galerius, Licinius -- hard headed, fierce-faced, strong-jawed, grim-mouthed, with short thick necks like barrels, ruthless, and terrifying. He in turn appointed Demetrios ruler of Thessalonica and all Thesaalia. When Maximian returned from a certain war, he gathered the officers of Thessalonica in order to offer sacrifice to the idols. Then Demetrios revealed that he was a Christian, and did not accept hewn stones as gods.

and this from that of St. George
Glorious, wonderful and great martyr of Christ George lived during the reign of emperor Diocletian in 296. He came from Cappadocia and descended from a glorious and well-known family. He first shone in the order of Tribunes and then, when he was about to suffer martyrdom, he became a count (i.e. a prefect or a governor or even a victorious general). Then impious Diocletian started a persecution against Christians. He issued a royal order so that all the Christians who denied Christ should be worthy of royal honours while all those who would not be convinced to do so would be punished with death.

St. George happened to be present when these orders were issued. He declared himself to be a Christian, and he criticized the delusion of the idols mocking those who believed in them. The saint was convinced neither by the flatteries and the many promises of the tyrant nor by his threats and intimidation. Instead, he scorned all of this. So, they first hit him on his belly with a spear which pierced the saint's flesh so much that a lot of blood poured out from the wound but the head of the spear turned back and, thus, the saint was kept unharmed. Then, they tied him on a wheel which had sharp knives embedded in it. They let it roll down a slope and, so, the martyr's body was cut to many pieces. However, he was again made healthy with the help of a divine angel. Then, the saint was presented to Diocletian and his co-emperor Magnentius, who were offering sacrifices to the idols at the time.

23 April - * St. George the great martyr, 303 A.D.

26 October - *St. Demetrios the great martyr, 306 A.D.
27October - St. Nestor the martyr, 306 A.D.

Of course there may have been three separate historical martyrs at or around this time, but I find it QI that there may not and that St. George may in fact be an amalgam of two people or indeed that he may be Nestor in another guise.

76691. Mon Jun 26, 2006 11:06 am Reply with quote
The genus Nestor consists of just three parrot species from New Zealand, the only genus of the Nestorinae subfamily. One species, the Norfolk Island Kaka, has become extinct

76708. Mon Jun 26, 2006 12:29 pm Reply with quote
Kaka plays number 8 for the Brazilian national football team.

Date of birth: 22 April 1982
Height: 183 cm
Weight: 73 kg
Position: Midfielder
Current Club: AC Milan (ITA)
Int'l Goals: 14 (as of 22-Jun-2006)
Int'l Caps: 41 (as of 22-Jun-2006)
First Int'l Cap: Brazil v. Bolivia (31-Jan-2002)

Budweiser Man of the Match
13 Jun Brazil 1:0 (1:0) Croatia

Brazil midfielder Kaka edged out several other worthy candidates for the Budweiser Man of the Match honours as the world champions opened their Germany 2006 campaign with a 1-0 win over Croatia.

Kaka's dangerous dribbling and passing were on display throughout the 90 minutes, but it was his 44th-minute curling strike past Croatia goalkeeper Stipe Pletikosa that separated him from the other impressive players on the pitch.

"It was really hard to choose the Budweiser Man of the Match because it was an even game," said FIFA Technical Study Group member Jozef Venglos. "Both teams played tactically very well, but Kaka got the decisive touch of the match.

"In the first half, Ronaldinho also played well. The Croatians put up a good fight, pushing the Brazilians in the second half. Igor Tudor also did very well, but the game was decided by Kaka."

Club History
2000-2003 São Paulo FC
Since 2003 AC Milan (ITA)

Kaka is a focused and aggressive attacking midfielder, with good ball skills and stamina, who can move into a striking role when required.

Kaka moved from Sao Paulo to AC Milan in 2003 after collecting the award for best player in the 2002 Brazilian championship and subsequently won the Serie A title in his first season in Italy.

He played in Brazil’s 2002 FIFA World Cup™ finals campaign, albeit not the Final, and scored five goals in their qualifiers for Germany 2006.

Topical AND relevant. Yay me.

76717. Mon Jun 26, 2006 2:26 pm Reply with quote
Some facts about the number 8

Eight (八, formal writing 捌, pinyin bā) is considered a lucky number in Chinese culture because it sounds like the word "prosper" or "wealth" (發 Pinyin: fā).
The Dharmacakra has eight spokes.
The Noble Eightfold Path in the Buddhist faith has eight steps.
In Astrology, Scorpio is the 8th astrological sign of the Zodiac.
Several groups of "Eight Immortals"
Mormons (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) believe that humankind are responsible for their actions by the age of 8. Before that age children are not able to sin and are therefore exempt from judgement for their actions. Mormons believe that if a person dies before the age of 8 that they will automatically inherit the Celestial Kingdom.
In numerology, 8 is the number of building, and in some theories, also the number of destruction.
In Scientology, there are 8 dynamics of life. Also in Scientology, the eighth dynamic represents the Infinity, or God.
Hanukkah is an eight day Jewish holiday that starts on the 25th day of December

76720. Mon Jun 26, 2006 3:09 pm Reply with quote
Beloved of cop/mob-speak in the movies we have the delightful image of the eight-ball hemorrhage

This is an extreme form of hyphemia* in which the bleeding in the eye is so bad that the entire eyeball turns black or dark brown from blood clots. Thus, the eye resembles a miniature black billiard ball. This condition is generally caused by a severe blow to the head or a direct blow to the eye (such as by being struck by a baseball or racquetball, two common ways people end up with this condition).

This condition almost always requires surgery to correct.

* Hyphemia is the medical name for bleeding in the eyeball. It is caused by the rupture of blood vessels in the eye. This is usually due to a blow to face or head. However, people whose blood has stopped clotting properly due to their taking certain medications (like coumadin or heparin) or who have diseases like diabetes or hemophilia that can weaken the eye's vessels can spontaneously develop eyeball bleeds.

Symptoms of hyphemia include watery eyes, pain, sensitivity to light (photophobia), and/or blurred vision. Most people who get hyphemias are under the age of 20. If the bleeding is bad, it can cause glaucoma (which can rapidly lead to damage to the optic nerve) or an 8-ball hemorrhage.

Treatment includes keeping the eye covered, limiting the patients' activity, having them sleep with their head elevated, and giving them medication to control increased pressure in the eye. In severe cases, surgery may be necessary.

There are two suggested mechanisms of hyphema formation. Either direct, contusive forces cause mechanical tearing of the fragile blood vasculature of the iris and/or angle, or concussive trauma creates rapidly rising intravascular pressure within these vessels, resulting in rupture.

Blood in the AC (anterior chamber) is not by itself necessarily harmful. However if quantities are sufficient it may obstruct the outflow of aqueous humor, resulting in glaucoma. Hemolytic glaucoma results from direct obstruction of the trabecular meshwork by fresh blood. Hemosiderosic glaucoma results from trabecular meshwork obstruction from degrading hemoglobin. Ghost cell glaucoma results from trabecular meshwork obstruction by the skeletons of the disintegrating red blood cells. Finally, any external force strong enough to produce internal bleeding is also sufficiently strong to produce direct damage to the adjacent trabecular meshwork, resulting in sluggish aqueous drainage (late glaucoma).

You know, I have this recurring dream.
I'm sitting at this big banquet table and...
...all of victims of all the murders I ever worked are sitting there...
...and they're staring at me with these black eyeballs...
...because they got eight-ball hemorrhages from the head wounds.
And there they are, these big balloon people...
...because I found them two weeks after they'd been under the bed.
The neighbors reported the smell...
...and there they are...
...all just sitting there.

Lt. Vincent Hanna (Al Pacino) Heat

76726. Mon Jun 26, 2006 3:51 pm Reply with quote
Alfredo James Pacino was born in the South Bronx on April 25th 1940.

One of the greatest actors in all of film history, Al Pacino established himself during one of film's greatest decades, the 70s, and has become an enduring and iconic figure in the world of American movies. Pacino's parents (Salvatore and Rose) divorced when he was young. His mother moved them into his grandparents' house. Pacino found himself often repeating the plots and voices of characters who he had seen in the movies, one of his favorite activities. Bored and unmotivated in school, the young Al Pacino found a haven in school plays, and his interest soon blossomed into a full-time career. Starting on the stage, Pacino went through a lengthy period of depression and poverty, sometimes having to borrow bus fare to make it to auditions. He made it into the prestigious Actors Studio in 1966, studying under the legendary acting coach Lee Strasberg, creator of the Method Approach that would become the trademark of many 70s era actors. Making appearances in various plays, Pacino finally hit it big with "The Indian Wants the Bronx", winning an Obie award for the 1966-67 season. Gaining notoriety on the theater scene, Pacino then won the Tony Award for "Does the Tiger Wear a Necktie?". His first feature films made little departure from the gritty realistic stage performances that earned him respect: he played a junkie in The Panic in Needle Park (1971) after his film debut in Me, Natalie (1969). What came next would change his life forever. The part of Michael Corleone in The Godfather (1972) was one of the most sought- after roles in film history. Robert Redford, Warren Beatty, Jack Nicholson, Ryan O'Neal, Robert De Niro, and a host of others were bandied about for the role, but director Francis Ford Coppola had his heart set on the unknown Italian Pacino. From the studio, to the producers, to the cast on down, nobody else wanted Al Pacino. Though Coppola won out through slick persuasion, Pacino was in constant fear of being fired and replaced at any minute during the hellish shoot. But the role was a career- making hit, and earned him his first Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor. Instead of taking on easier projects for money, Pacino threw his support behind tough important films, such as the true life crime drama Serpico (1973) and the tragic real life bank robbery film Dog Day Afternoon (1975). Pacino opened eyes around the film world for his brave choice of roles; and he was nominated three consecutive years for the "Best Actor" Academy Award. He faltered slightly with Bobby Deerfield (1977), but regained his stride with the law film ...And Justice for All (1979), for which he received another Academy Award nomination for Best Actor. This would unfortunately signal one of the only bad points in his career, one that produced the flops Cruising (1980) and Author! Author! (1982). He took on another vicious gangster role and cemented his legendary status in the ultra-violent Scarface (1983), but a monumental mistake was about to follow. Revolution (1985) endured an endless and seemingly cursed shoot in which equipment was destroyed, weather was terrible, and Pacino became terribly ill with pneumonia. Constant changes in the script also further derailed an already terrible project. The Revolutionary War film is considered one of the worst films ever, gained Pacino his first truly awful reviews, and kept him out of movies for the next four years. Returning to the stage, Pacino has done much to give back and contribute to the theatre, which he considers his first love. He directed a film _Local Stigmatic, The (1989)_ but it remains unreleased to the public. His self-imposed exile lifted, he returned in striking form in Sea of Love (1989) as a hard-drinking cop. The film marks the second phase of Pacino's career, the first film to feature his now famous dark, owl eyes and hoarse, gravelly voice. Making a return to the Corleones, he made The Godfather: Part III (1990), and earned raves for his first comedic role in the colorful Dick Tracy (1990). This earned him another Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor, and, two years later, he was nominated for Glengarry Glen Ross (1992). He went into romantic mode for Frankie and Johnny (1991). In 1992, he finally won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his amazing performance in Scent of a Woman (1992). A mix of technical perfection (he plays a blind man) and charisma, the role was tailor-made for him, and remains a classic. The next few years would see Pacino becoming more comfortable with acting and movies as a business, turning out great roles in great films with more frequency and less of the demanding personal involvement of his wilder days. Carlito's Way (1993) proved another gangster classic, as did the epic crime drama Heat (1995) directed by Michael Mann. He returned to the director's chair for the highly acclaimed and quirky Shakespeare adaptation Looking for Richard (1996). City Hall (1996), Donnie Brasco (1997), and The Devil's Advocate (1997) all came out in this period. Reteaming with Mann and then Oliver Stone, he gave two commanding performances in The Insider (1999) and Any Given Sunday (1999). In his personal life, Pacino is one of Hollywood's most enduring and notorious bachelors, having never been married. He has a daughter, Julie Marie, with acting teacher Jan Tarrant, and a new set of twins with long-time girlfriend Beverly D'Angelo. His romantic history includes a long-time romance with Godfather co-star Diane Keaton. With his intense and gritty performances, Pacino was an original in the acting profession. His Method approach would become the process of many actors throughout time, and his unbeatable number of classic roles has already made him a legend among film buffs and all aspiring actors and directors. His commitment to acting as a profession and his constant screen dominance has established him as one of movies' legends.

Source: IMDb

In 2007, he is slated to star in Ocean's Thirteen, alongside Brad Pitt, who is the boyfriend of Angelina Jolie

76735. Mon Jun 26, 2006 4:35 pm Reply with quote
Now that's style! I await QQ17 with anticipation

76854. Tue Jun 27, 2006 12:26 am Reply with quote
Yes yes, bring it on!

Whilst Wimbledon may be unable to provide any decent volleys at the moment QQ17 will, I have no doubt. samivel to serve.


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