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Friday, 25 August 2017


Here are the answers to my literature quiz:
The kudos goes to David but others did well too! He was the only one who spotted that the answer to Q2 could be found in the header of this blog.
Q1. Which famous words follow these "...any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind, and therefore...."?
A1. "....never send to know for whom the bells tolls; it tolls for thee."  This is often misquoted as "...ask not for whom the bell tolls...". It's the closing line of Meditation 17 by John Donne commonly known as 'No Man is an Island'. Donne was contemplating his own demise.

Q2. Which 1967 novel that tells the multi-generational story of the Buendía family?
A2. One Hundred years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. See the quote at the start of this Blog!

Q3. For which scientist did Broca's Brain win a Pulitzer Prize in 1978?
A3. Carl Sagan, the populariser of science who made the great TV series Cosmos: A personal Voyage. Broca's Brian was a collection of essays, the title being from an essay about the Frenchman Paul Broca who was the first person to assign different functions to various parts of the human brain.

Q4. What do the titles of John Updike's In the Beauty of the Lillies and John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath have in common?
A4. They are both taken from abolitionist Battle Hymn of the Republic ("Mine eyes have seen the coming of the glory of the Lord....." etc). Julia Ward Howe added new lyrics to the tune John Brown's Body. All Americans should get that one.

Q5. Who, after asking “why is a raven like a writing-desk?”, admitted that he "hadn't the slightest idea" when the person he asked gave up?
A5. The Mad Hatter in Lewis Carrol's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

Q6. What book is the first in the series A Song of Ice and Fire?
A6. A Game of Thrones by George R.R.Martin, now one of the most successful TV series of all time. I've never seen it but I'm sure it's very nice....A Song of Ice and Fire is also redolent of the quote at the head of this Blog, which contrasts ice and fire.

Q7. What was the name of Holden Caulfield's younger sister in Catcher in the Rye?
A7. Phoebe, who Holden loves dearly and who represents the innocence and youth that Holden is trying to preserve. Jim (Parnassus) and Sherry got that one.

Q8. Which author's breakthrough book was described by Salman Rushdie as a 'book so bad it makes bad books look good'? And I agree with him!
A8. Dan Brown, author of the execrable The Da Vinci Code.
I'm listening to Michael Nesmith and the First National Band singing Joanne
Listen HERE.
Funnily enough, I also like a song of the same title by Lady Gaga.
You can listen to it HERE.


Parnassus said...

Hello Bazza, I should have also gotten the Alice in Wonderland reference. Perhaps so many of your titles were of more recent books that my mind was wandering in that direction.

David said...

Hi bazza,
I don't get much kudos these days, so I'll gratefully accept the plaudit of having given the most correct answers to your little quiz!
I'm quite surprised that I got the last answer right. I was in two minds as to whether to put E. L. James's "50 Shades of Grey", an equally execrable exercise in literary misadventure, but it seems I chose correctly.
Finally, I'd just like to thank my mum, dad and God for creating such an intelligent and talented person as my good self, and I'm already looking forward to your next quiz when I can further display my infinite wisdom.
Very Best Wishes,

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Bazza - Well .. I have much learning to do. A while ago I did check your header quote out ... but obviously forgotten and certainly not remembered.

Good heavens above ... David is encouraging more - well that would start educating me ... perhaps I'd better start doing crosswords ...

But well done - a really good educational quiz ... enjoyable - and now I can pick up some more information ... cheers Hilary

bazza said...

Jim: My quizzes are always tricky! I'd go so far as to say sneaky. Next time you'll be aware.....although you did well with 'Phoebe'.

bazza said...

David: Thanks for your comment; it really gave me a good laugh! And congratulations. I have not read Fifty Shades of Grey but my instincts told me I would not like it.

bazza said...

Hilary: There will be more. Maybe I will choose a different subject next time. I was thinking molecular biology or medieval Japanese ;-)

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

I'm a trivia buff, and fairly well-read, but methinks I wouldn't have done very well on your quiz. Thanks for expanding my mind a bit. :)

bazza said...

Hi Susan. My quizzes seem to be either far to east or far too hard. I prefer them to be hard!

klahanie said...

Hey Bazza!

Ah, my fine fellow, a little late for the quiz. Of course, if I did a quiz it would be a pub quiz. Then again, I don't know much about pubs.

David gets kudos from me on a regular basis. Well done to David, all round, great, amazing dude and a double of the dart player, Andy Fordham!

Cheers, old chap.


bazza said...

Gary (Klahanie): What a shame you got here too late. You could have nicked the kudos from David. Does David have the same lithe figure as Andy Fordham, I wonder.
It's good to hear from you Gary.