Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Tuesday Trivia

  1. Which well-known 20th century, British author held his first civilian job after WWI was at the offices of the Oxford English Dictionary as an etymologist?
  2. How many years did it take for the Guinness Book of World Records take to “get into itself” by setting a record as the fastest-selling book in the world?
  3. Who is the top-selling English-language author of all time?
  4. Which classical Roman poet left instructions to burn his masterwork when he died because he didn’t have time to polish it?
  5. Which Jerzy Kosinski novel is based on his unexpected stopover in New York on a flight from Los Angeles to Paris?

Last Week’s Answers

Who is the most successful textbook author of all time?

Elements, by Euclid, was written circa 300 B.C. and has gone through more than 1,000 editions since the invention of printing.

When was the first cookbook published?

In 62 A.D., De Re Coquinaria was published by the Roman Apicius and described the feasts enjoyed by the Emperor Claudius.

Who, according to popular opinion at the time, was the most famous and important playwright in the Elizabethian age?

Thomas Watson was one of the most popular and important playwrights in the Elizabethan age, but sadly, none of his works survive today.

The moons of all planets except for Uranus are named after Greek gods. What are the moons of Uranus named after?

The moons of Uranus named after literary characters. Ariel, Umbriel, and Belinda from Pope’s The Rape of the Lock, and a variety of Shakespeare characters including Titania, Oberon, and Puck from A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Ariel, Miranda, Caliban, Sycorax, Prospero, Setebos, Stephano, Trinculo, Francisco, and Ferdinand from The Tempest, Cordelia from King Lear, Ophelia from Hamlet, Bianca from The Taming of the Shrew, Cressida from Troilus and Cressida, Juliet and Mab from Romeo and Juliet, Portia from The Merchant of Venice, Rosalind from As You Like It, Margaret from Much Ado About Nothing, Perdita from The Winter’s Tale, and Cupid from Timon of Athens.

Where does A.A. Milne’s classic children’s character, Winnie-the-Pooh, get his name?

Winnie-the-Pooh is based on a real bear. In 1914, Harry Colebourn, a Canadian soldier and veterinarian purchased an orphaned black bear cub in White River, Ontario, which he named Winnipeg, or “Winnie” for short. During his service in World War I, Colebourn loaned Winnie to the London Zoo, where she became the zoo's top attraction.

In the 1920's, Milne often took his son, Christopher Robin, to the zoo, so it was no surprise when Christopher named his teddy bear "Winnie-the-Pooh" after Winnie. And thus, A. A. Milne went on to write several well-loved children's books about Christopher Robin and Winnie-the-Pooh.