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The 'B' List

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593.  Thu Oct 23, 2003 12:18 pm Reply with quote

Frederick-you are quite right, it was the Northumberland which conveyed the little coporal to St Helena.

Frederick The Monk
594.  Thu Oct 23, 2003 12:51 pm Reply with quote

Not sure about the 'a' question Jenny. Klingon, Nadsat, Esperanto and C are all  artificial (or constructed) languages - which might be the 'a' and the only B connection I can think of for the second is that it was invented by Anthony Burgess for his book 'A Clockwork Orange".

596.  Thu Oct 23, 2003 2:57 pm Reply with quote

Right on all counts on the A question, Frederick :-)

As for Sir Bedivere (for he spells his name two different ways), his Welsh name is a double B because he was known as Bedwyr Bedrydant. This second word apparently translates as "of the Perfect Sinews" so presumably he had a pretty buff body (more Bs, see?). The Mabinogion reports him as being one-handed but nonetheless handsome and a fast and fierce fighter, and the Black Book of Carmarthen reports him as having fought in the battle of Tryfrwyd.

Malory (and later Tennyson, of course) name him as the knight who throws Excalibur back to its original owner, the Lady of the Lake, at the behest of the dying Arthur. When Arthur asked what had happened after the sword was thrown, he knew Bedivere had failed to carry out his instructions when Bedivere could report seeing nothing but the water lapping at the banks. When Bedivere finally did throw the sword, an arm (according to Tennyson 'clothed in white samite, mystic, wonderful) rose above the water and caught it, after which a boat came and carried Arthur off to the isle of Avalon, where of course he lives to this day waiting to return in triumph when England is in peril.

Did we have any A questions about Arthur and Avalon by the way?

Frederick The Monk
597.  Thu Oct 23, 2003 3:03 pm Reply with quote

It is a source of great sadness to me that I have never been referred to as 'Frederick of the perfect sinews".

598.  Thu Oct 23, 2003 3:06 pm Reply with quote

Question twelve

Oh I like this one and there are actually several Bs in it! A potted biography of this B tells us that this quiet, retiring research scientist was seriously injured when his place of work was attacked by a villain named Joshua, although he also had a more colourful alias. Merlin approached our hero and offered him a choice between the amulet of right or the sword of might. Being a thoroughly decent kind of chap, as befits the name he later adopted, he chose the former. It carried a sartorially somewhat tasteless costume, but enabled him to go around Doing Good as superheroes should.

600.  Thu Oct 23, 2003 3:26 pm Reply with quote

What B founded a Gnostic sect in the second century in Edessa, which believed that the human body was ethereal till it was imbruted [good word!] with sin?

606.  Thu Oct 23, 2003 5:03 pm Reply with quote


Some time ago, you were all right about the Bellerophon (or Billy Ruffian, as the sailors called it) - Napoleon was imprisoned on her while they figured out what to do with him, but she didn't take him to St Helena. Mea culpa. Incidentally, there's an entry in Napoleon's journal from many years before, when he happened to sail past that island; it says: "Ste Helene, petite ile".

Frederick The Monk
607.  Thu Oct 23, 2003 5:09 pm Reply with quote

Question twelve has so many B's! Brian Braddock - best buddies witht the black knight. Better known as Captain Britain alias Britannic, brother of Jamie Braddock. Beaten to buggery by that bastard Joshua Stragg a.k.a 'The Reaver' (none of which begins with b - but never mind).

I may have to sit down now.

Frederick The Monk
608.  Thu Oct 23, 2003 5:13 pm Reply with quote

I didn't know Napoleon had passed by St. Helena before he was banged up there. That is Qi - I wonder if any other to-be-prisoners had earlier comments about locations that would later prove their prisons. I shall have a look........

611.  Thu Oct 23, 2003 5:29 pm Reply with quote

Oh, and Jenny's one is Captain Britain, aka Brian Braddock., and the guy who attacked him was the Reaver. But what I want to know is, what's going on here? Women aren't supposed to know that kind of thing. Back in the 70s I could identify at sight the graphic style of every penciller working in mainstream US comics, the way some good academics can distinguish the handwriting of every monk who worked in a scriptorium in 9th century England. But I certainly never talked to any girls about it.

612.  Thu Oct 23, 2003 5:31 pm Reply with quote

Damn! My computer crashed as I was typing that last sad message and by the time I had rebooted, Fred had slipped in like the Night Crawler and stolen my five points. Oh well, I bet you don't have any original Gil Kane artwork in your downstairs dunny.

Frederick The Monk
617.  Thu Oct 23, 2003 5:43 pm Reply with quote

I don't have a downstairs dunny actually.

627.  Fri Oct 24, 2003 8:33 am Reply with quote

I have a teenage son, Flash, and mothers Know Everything. I know more than is good for me about Japanese anime too.

631.  Fri Oct 24, 2003 9:08 am Reply with quote

Bluebells is indeed the right answer to Question 4, Fred.

The bulbs were crushed to make a 'mucilage' to starch ruffs, and bind books.

The stems were similarly treating to make arrow-feather glue.

(Sorry to be hours behind everyone....been trying to catch up on all the brilliant new stuff)

Frederick The Monk
656.  Fri Oct 24, 2003 10:27 am Reply with quote

Question 14 - I think

Which one time bankrupt fur trading 'B' claimed his (now household) family name derived from an incident in which an ancestor shot a hawk and thus saved a British Queen's life?


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