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Thursday, 6 January 2011

Quiz Questions (13 ): Origin of Book Titles

Name the source of these book titles, firstly two by John Steinbeck and then two by British writers:

1) East of Eden
2) The Grapes of Wrath
3) The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
4) Diamonds Are Forever

The answers are now published in the 'comments'. See how well you did (or not!)


Alicia said...

1. "East of Eden" is a biblical reference to where Cain was exiled after slaying Abel.

2. "The Grapes of Wrath" is part of a line in "The Battle Hymn of the Republic," an amazing anthem from the American Civil War. I don't know if that song took it from elsewhere.

3 and 4 I have no idea ... But "the Dog in the Nighttime" makes me think of the constellation Sirius.

I do enjoy your quizzes!

Kelly said...

Well, I have read that "East of Eden" was semi-autobiographical. The three books after that- I have no idea about their 'sources'. I've read the "Grapes of Wrath" long ago but I have no idea about it's 'source'. Wish I could give better guesses but I can't. Sorry. Take care, bazza.

bazza said...

Alicia: Happy New Year to you. I promised myself that I will say nothing about who is right or wrong until I publish all the correct answers in a few days time!

Kelly: My lips are sealed for the moment. Thanks for visiting, try not to lose any sleep!

joanne rose said...

the only one i'm familiar with is the first one... (says a lot, huh?)

I think Alicia and Kelly are both right, if I of the families in the book is supposed to be semi-autobiographical. inspired from the bible, book of Genesis, Cain and Abel, 4th chapter.

Steinbeck's novel has a lot of parallels to the Cain and Abel story, and at one point directly references it in the story. Steinbeck even gives names to many of the characters that begin with the letters C and A.

i don't know if this quiz is harder than the few recent ones or if it is just a reflection on how un-read i am... :)

kerrie said...

Good day good sir here are my guesses
1 . East of Eden was inspired by a girl named Edan (not edam) who though she came from West Ham had the look of eastern promise- she loved garlic and wore scares a lot - pretty exotic for early 19 C Amercia
2. Grapes of wrath was inspired by a pretty bad case of piles...
3 The Curious incident of the Dog in the night-time arhh now this is an interesting .It was inspired by a postman’s wife – whose man went off in the middle of the night mumbling something about that dam able red setter . He was never seen again or the red setter the only evidence found was a gas bill and a few half eaten dog chew by the mail box!
4 Diamonds are forever- never heard of that one is it something to do with Neil Diamond’s inability to give up singing about seagulls
As usual you blog is stimulating and fun- however I am in the middle of a mild detox (so the box says) which involves quite a few hallucinogenic as well as explosive herbs so if I am alittle of the mark I blame it on the herbs or erbs as an American would say
Your sitting uncomfortable

Alicia said...

Bazza may have promised not to laugh at the wrong answers, but I never did. Kerrie, I am giggling madly at your answers, especially the last one!

bazza said...

joanne rose: Hi, yes, this quiz is deliberatley harder! People kept getting the others too quickly for my liking. As stated above no comment on your answers just yet.

Kerrie: That's an hilarious response for which I thank you. I am laughing but in a caring way as Dame Edna Everage would say.

Alicia: Agreed! But I can't beleive that Kerrie has not heard of Diamonds Are Forever!

joanne fox said...

I always thought the dog in the night time was something to do with Sherlock Holmes. But I could be thinking about the dog that didn't bark.

bazza said...

Oh Joanne, that's a very interesting comment!

joanne fox said...

Is it?!

bazza said...


joanne fox said...

Now I am thinking that the dog in the night time and the dog that didn't bark are one and the same. Therefore I rest my case, Watson, that the answer to Q3 is Arthur Conan Doyle.

bazza said...

JF, you may have to be more specific!

THE SNEE said...

Hi Bazza,
It looks like Alicia, Kelly, Joanne R and F are on the track of Q1-3, but Q4 has me completely stymied. I will have to shake up a decent James Bond Martini to figure out why Ian Fleming decided that Diamonds are Forever. Hmmm... Very tricky and very fun Bazza!

bazza said...

Snee: It is interesting (to me at least!)
Don't forget that I have not said that the title sources are necessarily from literature - they could be from any source of the written word. I think there may be some self-kicking going on shortly!
Have a great weekend.

joanne rose said...

i just saw a commercial on t.v. that used the slogan, "a diamond is forever"... i don't know how old that slogan is, but i know i've heard of it for many years... and it made me think of this post :)

David said...

Dear bazza,
Now you have me truly stumped.
I always thought that the first two were biblical references. As for the third one, could it be from Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes mystery "The Hound of the Baskervilles". As for the fourth, I have no idea.
Well done, bazza, for making it harder this time. I will look forward to getting the answers, which some smart alek (this time not me) is bound to get (after looking on t'internet, maybe!)
Yours with all the best,

bazza said...

joanne rose: I am enjoying watching the way the answers are being gradually revealed like someone carving a statue from piece of rock; I am about to put an end to your wondering.

David: When I wrote these questions I had in mind that I must make it too hard for David because he always gets the answers right! Excellent!

bazza said...

Here are the definitive answers to these deliberately difficult questions. Well done to everyone who had a guess and congratulations to those who got part or all of any question correct!
Q1) And Cain went out from the presence of the Lord, and dwelt in the land of Nod, on the east of Eden. Genesis 4:16

Q2) Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord
He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored;
He hath loosed the fateful lightning of His terrible swift sword:
His truth is marching on.
From The Battle Hymn of the Republic by Julia Ward Howe

Q3) Gregory (Scotland Yard detective): "Is there any other point to which you would wish to draw my attention?"
Sherlock Holmes: "To the curious incident of the dog in the night-time."
Gregory: "The dog did nothing in the night-time."
Holmes: "That was the curious incident."
From Silver Blaze By Arthur Conan Doyle

Q4) In 2000, Advertising Age magazine named "A Diamond Is Forever" the best advertising slogan of the twentieth century. It was created for the De Beers Company and was in use by 1947 and possibly even earlier.

THE SNEE said...

Ah Ha! So it was simply the ad that inspired the title!

bazza said...

Snee: Yup, simply that!

Hira Animfefte (Xera Anymphefte) said...

I guessed 3. was Sherlock Holmes, but I thought for sure it was from "Hound of the Baskervilles." Oh well!

Mad props, Alicia.

bazza said...

Hira: Thanks for commenting anyway. Did you find this blog via 'Forever Changed'?