Thursday, September 10, 2009

Second Quiz; for the other half

To my British readers: I hope you don't take this the wrong way, but you did pretty crappy on the American part of this quiz. Just sayin'. If I can learn, YOU can learn. A lot of those were the same questions from before. Oh, well.

Here is the British part of the quiz. I'm betting the American readers do much better about you than you did about us. How could they not? This is more fun than Lady Guinevere riding naked through the streets of Coventry.

There are a few gifts for non-Americans, just so Americans can get a few. All are pretty hard for Americans.

1. After all my studying and researching the United Kingdom, I find I still don’t know squat about their police. I do know that Northern Ireland has its own police, and that the London area has at least three police forces - The Met(ropolitan) police, of New Scotland Yard; the City of London Police, who police the Square Mile; and the queen has her own police. Called the Royal Police, probably. I don’t have a clue if police in Scotland are the same as England's: I don’t know if it is a national (Great Britain) police force or not. But I DO know why Met police are called Bobbies. Do you? Let me rephrase the question - otherwise Soubriquet and A. will simply say “yes.” Ahem. WHY are the police called Bobbies?

2. We call her the Queen of England, but she isn’t really - she’s the Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. And probably more. But at one time there were kings and queens of England. Who was the last real Queen of (only) England?

3. Who was the longest reigning king?

4. Who was the longest reigning queen?

5. Anyone know who the first Prince of Wales was? I thought not.

6. What is the longest river in Scotland?

7. In what county was King Arthur’s legendary Camelot located?

8. Extra points if you can tell where King Arthur was (supposedly) born.

9. (A gift) What’s a quid?

10. (A gift) What does it mean to spend a penny?

11. (More gifts) What is a spotted dick? A toad in the hole? Marmite? Parson's nose? A chip butty? Bangers and mash?

12. The southernmost settlement in England, not counting islands, is Lizard. What is the northernmost point? (Again, not counting islands)

13. The "Profumo Affair" starring Christine Keeler and Mandy Rice-Davies, discredited the government of what conservative PM in 1963?

14. What creature is on the flag of Wales?

15. What is the national landmark affectionately known as The Old Lady of Threadneedle Street?

16. St. Patrick, according to legend, banished what from Ireland?

17. On what cathedral is England's tallest spire? (Actually in all the UK)

18. Sassenach is a word used by what part of the UK about what other part of the UK?

19. What is the greatest distance you can get from the sea in the UK?

20. What county is famous for it's pasties?

21. The Southernmost point in the UK to the Northernmost point is over a thousand miles. True or false?

22. What is Eisteddfod?

23. What does GMT stand for?

24. Where is the Giant's Causeway?

25. What is the royal family's surname?


  1. 1. Originally known as Peeler's after Robert Peel.. they later became Bobbie's
    2. Elizabeth I
    3. King George III
    4. Elizabeth I
    5. Edward Prince of Wales - Later Edward II
    6. River Tay (Not the Spey as some might think)
    7. Camelot is supposedly Tintagel in Cornwall, but support is given for it actually being Glastonbury
    8. King Arthur's place of birth not really known, but many people think Caerleon in Wales
    9. A Quid is a british unit of currency The Pound
    10. To go to the toilet used to cost one old penny.. hence the name stuck to spend a penny
    11. Spotted dick - steamed sponge pudding with raisins; Toad in the Hole - sausages cooked in a yorkshire pudding; Marmite - A yeast spread.. yummy; Parson's Nose - the butt of a turkey or chicken; Chip Butty - a portion of french fries in between two slices of bread; Bangers and Mash - sausages with mashed potatoes.. nice with onion gravy.
    12. Skartskerry in Caithness is the northermost settlement in Scotland.
    13. John Profumo was the MP and it brought down Harold Macmillan's government.
    14. Dragon
    15. Bank of England
    16. Snakes
    17. Salisbury
    18. Scottish use it to describe the English
    19. 230 miles - I know I am there!
    20. Cornwall
    21. True
    22. A Gathering of dance, music and storytelling of the Welsh
    23. Greenwich Mean Time
    24 Northern Ireland believed to have reached the shores of scotland originally in pre-historic times before the seas rose
    25. Windsor - changed from Saxe-Coburg-Gotha in 1917 when anti-german feelings grew.

  2. If you're trying to prove that Americans know more about the UK than British know about the USA, you don't think you've introduced an enormous bias in your results by being an American setting the questions on Britain?

  3. We'll have to see how this goes.

    1. I don't know. I could guess and say it refers to the silly roundish hats or their nightsticks, but it's pure speculation.

    2. I think this is a trick question. One could say Elizabeth I, as Scotland wasn't folded back in until her successor, but Wales had already been incorporated by Elizabeth's father. It's further complicated by the fact that many English kings (in case we want to pull out a queen who didn't rule in her own right) prior to Elizabeth still had claims to French lands (or even the whole country of France) and had various conquered Scotland and Ireland for bits of time (and portions of them all the time). In fact, to the best of my knowledge, England pretty much had a lock on Calais since Edward III. If we went with Edward I's first wife (prior to conquering Wales or Scotland), it could be Eleanor, but queens didn't much rule in their own right. I'm just saying I don't know that there is an answer unless we go back to the Anglo-Saxons (and even then...). My guess, though, is you intended for it to be Elizabeth I.

    3. Probably someone ineffective or forgettable because I've forgotten. Most of the effective kings got themselves killed in battle and stuff.

    4. Victoria, the longest reigning monarch or Queen in British history.

    5. One of the Edwards most likely since Edward I was one of those that conquered Wales - probably his ineffectual son Edward II who was so pathetic his (French) wife and her boyfriend overthrew him in the name of her son, Edward III. Edward I was Edward Longshanks, the bad guy in the Braveheart movie since he conquered and then relost Scotland as well. But the joke was on William Wallace and Robert the Bruce since Scotland joined back up with England later.
    Sorry, got distracted. I'm actually descended from Edward I (NOT Edward II).

    6. Hell, I can't tell you the longest river in Europe, let alone Scotland. I only know the big players on the WORLD scale.

    7. Do we even KNOW this or is it conjecture? Either way, I sure as heck don't know.

    8. Damn, lost more extra points.

    9. A pound? British money confuses me. I think they should go with the Euro for MY convenience :).

    10. Um, no clue. I guess this wasn't covered in the James Herriot books.

    I'm going to limit these to 10 per and I won't read anyone else's answers in case you were wondering.

  4. Got a question, why did most of the US questions involve political history of the US and most of the ones about the Brits include cultural references or geography? If we'd gone with US cultural references, your British readers might have done better. Just sayin'.

    11. Most of these are names for foods, like spotted dick and bangers and mash, but I can never remember what foods they are. I've never had most of them, I'm guessing, but then I've never been to Great Britain.

    12. Don't know.

    13. Unless they did something clever, I don't keep track of Prime Ministers, so, I don't know. Admittedly, most of my interest in history is pre-1800's and that's even more true of history outside the US. I'm afraid I'm going to be a disappointment.

    14. A bear? I have no idea why I think that. It's probably wrong.

    15. Statue of Queen Victoria? (Ironically, I was just reading about Threadneedle street in this novel I'm reading - carbook - but I don't remember mention of a statue.)

    16. Snakes! Yay, one I knew.

    17. St. Paul's?

    18. I'm pretty sure it's used to describe the English by either the Scottish or the Irish (I think the Scottish) but I picked up that recollection from novels I've read in the past and I couldn't say for sure.

    19. No idea, though it should be expressed in kilometers. It's not far. Likely, it's a shorter distance than the extents of Los Angeles.

    20. I'm afraid to touch this one.

    21. Are we including islands?

    22. I don't know.

    23. Greenwich Mean Time

    24. I don't know.

    25. It's the house of Windsor, but I don't know if that's the surname. And did the Queen change her last name to match her husband's? I don't know that either.

  5. Sage, you expert. I feel so ignorant.

  6. I refuse to take any of these tests! I hated tests when I was getting graded on them.

    I luff you, Max. But I'm NOT DOING THIS!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. Stephanie, I don't think you need to feel ignorant. For British people, those questions weren't very difficult which is why I questioned the bias. I may be wrong, but the US questions seemed more difficult, but of course I'm looking at them from a long way away. For instance, how many cabinet positions are there in the UK? But I do object to your calling our British bobbies' hats silly. Can't cope with that at all. :)

    Regarding the first queen of England, I'm afraid Wales didn't join England on an equal footing but was absorbed.

    I've been away so I came to this quiz half way, through with the answers to the US version already published. I can't therefore join in but I can't resist adding my penny's worth.

  8. I also think the focus makes a big difference. A poli-sci person would likely have done swimmingly on the US one (which I'm not), but founder completely on the British one. I knew some of the history, but the nuts and bolts of geography or current cultural stuff left me high and dry. But a Brit might not even bat an eye answering. The cultural things for the US, however, might be quite familiar to those outside the US given the spread of US movies and stuff, but I speculate. That might not be the case.

    What I did know I learned from reading English and British novels, which I enjoy greatly, but mostly older novels so it isn't up to date.

    As for the question about the Queen of England, I used Relax Max' visual aid (which clearly shows England sans Wales). I blame Relax Max for ambiguity.

    As for the Bobbies' hats, I guess to each their own.

  9. No time to address it in full, but Sage is mostly saying what I might, However.... King Arthur's mother was Ygraine, wife of Gorlois, Duke of Cornwall, and I've always thought the legend placed her at the time of Arthur's birth, at the castle of Tintagel, on the north coast of Cornwall.
    Camelot? Well, it was mythical, so it might have been anywhere. There's a strong contention that Arthur was based on a real figure, who united the Celtic tribes on the withdrawal of the romans, and the evidence points to his stronghold as being in Carlisle, on the north western corner of England, near the Scottish border.
    The town the Romans knew as Camulodunum, is Colchester, in Essex, (south-east England)
    Number 10, the spend a penny... To clarify, doors in public toilets had a coin-operated lock. Insertion, in the coin-slot, of an old, non-decimal penny opened the door.
    The Scots call the English Sassenachs, the Welsh word for English is 'Saesneg'.
    12. The southernmost settlement in England, not counting islands, is Lizard. What is the northernmost point? (Again, not counting islands)
    Northernmost point of england? The coast, somewhere just north of Berwick upon Tweed. Northernmost bit of mainland BRITAIN, is Cape Wrath in Scotland.

    No time for more, got to be up at an unrealistically early hour tomorrow.

  10. @Sage - You sound pretty sure of yourself. We'll see. :)

    @A. - No.

    @Stephanie B - Hmmmmm. You bluff a good game. Much of what you say may be true. We'll find out tomorrow. :)

    @Angelika - Go to the office young lady!

    @A. - Well, maybe not very hard for them from the Pom Islands. :) But where were you when we were looking for Calvin Coolidge? Now, this isn't over yet. Let's here your answers. Sage doesn't HAVE to be 100% correct. :) :)

    @Stephanie B - Would you stop belly aching about my choice of questions??????? Holy Mackeral! You are doing okay so far. Just keep thinking! :)

    Wales is sort of special. We will have Soubriquet explain that to us again. Principality. Ruled by a prince. Prince of Wales. Not really. Best we wait for Soubriquet. Or A. A. could tell us. But we would still be confused. Sage. I don't know...

    Let me start over. Wales is indeed a country. Yessiree. Sort of special though. Oh, I already said that...

    Too bad Catherine doesn't come around anymore. If anyone would know...

    @Soubriquet - Wait!

  11. The first prince of Wales, according to my mother's books, was Owain of Gwynnedd, who proclaimed himself King of Wales in the twelfth century. On my mother's side, (she was a Griffith), I'm (allegedly), a descendent of Llewellyn ap Grufydd, the LAST prince of Wales.
    Wales is a mountainous country to the west of England. The Romans traded with Wales:- there were goldmines and other riches, but they never significantly settled Wales, the celtic tribes retreated from England in the face of immigration from saxons, angles, danes, jutes, oh, scads of foreigners moved here. The Celts moved to the mountains of wales and fought anybody who ventured in.
    When William the Conqueror defeated King Harold of England at the battle of Hastings, he rapidly asserted control over all of England. Wales, however was too prickly for him, so he established a chain of great castles along the border with Wales to try keep Welsh raiders out of his kingdom.
    From the fifth century a.d. wales had been considered a nation, albeit one composed of a coalition of disparate celtish tribes. These tribes united against outsiders, and were brought together by princes,.the last of these to hold sway over all wales being Llewellyn , son of Gruffyd. His banner was the red dragon, Yddraig Goch,- (that same dragon was the banner of Uther Pendragon, and his son, King Arthur, leader of the knights of the round table.
    Llewellyn's hold over wales was not easy, he battled and defeated his own brothers.
    Llewellyn himself was defeated by Edward 1st....
    Edward then claimed sovereignty over Wales, but the welsh said they'd refuse to bow their knee to any english speaking prince. The story goes that when Edward's wife was pregnant, he sent her to Caernavon Castle, in Wales, where his first born son was born, Edward, it is said, took the babe onto the castle walls, raised him aloft, and cried "Behold, I give you a prince, born in Wales, who speaks not a word of English!"
    That prince eventually became King Henry the second of England.

  12. You mean King Edward II of England, don't you, soubriquet?

  13. Argh.
    Stabbed by mine own hand, Stephanie B you are so right. Edward 2. Edward 2 edward toooooo
    Don't know where Henry II crept in. Maybe it was just the fact that EdwardII was such an eejit.
    A rubbish king, a prince imposed on the welsh by a foreigner, prince of Wales he might have been in name, but he did nothing much of note for Wales.

    Murdered at the behest of his own wife, Queen Isabella, and her dastardly lover, Roger Mortimer....
    In a horror story sort of way too.
    or not, some historians think.. some think he was simply forced to flee the country.


  14. Some of the tales I've heard of his murder were particularly gruesome.

  15. Do I get a spanking if I go to the office???



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