Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Tuesday Trivia

  1. What did Robert Browning substitute to cure his wife, Elisabeth Barrett Browning, from her addiction to laudanum?
  2. What famous satirical writer originated the expression "raining cats and dogs"?
  3. What early American writer used the pseudonyms Geoffrey Crayon and Jonathan Oldstyle?
  4. What American entertainer wrote the best selling books The Man in Black in 1975 and Man in White in 1986?
  5. What popular childrens' book was written by Ian Fleming, creator of British secret agent James Bond?

Last Week's Answers

Who wrote the first modern ghost story in the English language?

Daniel Defoe, author of Robinson Crusoe, penned the “True Relation of the Apparition of One Mrs. Veal,” which was published in 1706.

What famous American author's grandfather was the model for Oliver Wendell Holmes' “The Last Leaf,” a poem about a survivor to the Boston Tea party?

Herman Melville's grandfather, Major Thomas Melvill, was the muse for Holmes’ 1891 poem. Holmes met Herman Melville
(along with Nathaniel Hawthorne and various other famous writers) at the famous picnic at Monument Mountain in Lenox, Massachusetts, August 5, 1850, and developed a friendship.

Tattered Tom and Ragged Dick were the heroes in two books written by what nineteenth century American author?

They were both heroes in books written by Horatio Alger. Alger wrote approximately 120 rags-to-riches success stories about hardworking and honest young men between 1883 and 1896.

Who is the cocktail Brandy Alexander named for?

Brandy Alexander, a sweet, brandy-based cocktail popular during the early 20th century was supposedly named for Alexander Woollcott, drama and literary critic and Algonquin Round Table regular. Woollcott's reviews helped to launch several big names into stardom — most notably the Marx Brothers. Woollcott’s review of their Broadway debut, I'll Say She Is, helped the group's career and forged a life-long friendship with Harpo Marx.

What famous English writer, while living in Vermont, created snow golf?

Although the origin of snow golf is the Dutch game of "Kolf" that has been played since the Middle Ages, modern snow golf is credited to Rudyard Kipling. While living in Vermont in the 1890s, Kipling relaxed by playing snow golf when he wasn’t writing his classic work, The Jungle Book. He painted the balls red so that they wouldn't be lost in the snow.

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