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Competitions | September Issue

Marcus Berkmann's ever-popular general knowledge quiz, sponsored by

Every four weeks, Marcus Berkmann sets a General Knowledge quiz with a prize of £50 of vouchers for for the first winner to be pulled out of the hat with all 20 questions answered correctly.

At you can mix and match from a range of over 1,200 wines, champagnes and spirits to create your own case, or why not choose one of the exclusive premixed cases? Plus they have their very own Cellar specialists who are on hand to offer guidance.

Congratulations to the winner Andrew Michael Leech!

1.  Which artist painted more than 60 studies of Mont St Victoire, near Aix-en-Provence, between 1870 and 1900?

Answer – Paul Cézanne. 

2.  Which element is the commonest in the Earth’s crust, accounting for 46.4% of the total weight?

Answer – Oxygen. 

3.  The number of MPs in the House of Commons was reduced from 707 to 615 at the 1922 General Election. The creation of what caused the drop in numbers?

Answer – The Irish Free State. 

4.  What is believed by most authorities to be the most ancient of London’s markets, founded some four hundred years before the Christian era?

Answer – Billingsgate.

5.  In English law, which one-word term can be defined as ‘the failure of a person to surrender to the custody of a court’?

Answer – Absconding. (‘Doing a runner’ is three words.)

6.  Which legendary francophone singer started life as Jean-Philippe Smet?

Answer – Johnny Hallyday.

7.  How is a hectometre better known?

Answer – 100 metres. 

8.  Who is the only trades union official ever to become Prime Minister?

Answer – James Callaghan.

9.  What is the only French-speaking independent republic in the Americas?

Answer – Haiti. 

10.  In 1921 Arthur Mailey, playing for the visiting Australians, took all ten Gloucestershire wickets for 66 runs. What did he call his autobiography, published nearly four decades later? (In the long tradition of cricketing autobiographies, the title is an agonising pun.)

Answer – 10 for 66 And All That. 

11.  Which 17th-century stately home in Sussex, owned by the National Trust, was badly damaged by fire in 1989, when only swift action by staff and visitors saved many of its valuable artworks? It was restored and re-opened to the public in 1995.

Answer – Uppark.

12.  Mr Len Martin came to this country from Australia in 1953 to see the Coronation. On the day he was to return, he was offered a job by the BBC and never went back. From 1958 to his death in 1995, he performed what vital function for the Corporation?

Answer – Read the football results on Grandstand. 

13.  Which EU country, one of the original six, was known from the 1580s until the 1790s as the United Provinces?

Answer – The Netherlands. (Accept ‘Holland’.)

14.  Which actor, now aged 86, has called all his dogs ‘Boo Radley’ after the first role he played on film, in To Kill A Mockingbird in 1962?

Answer – Robert Duvall. 

15.  Who, while editing Sportsview for BBCTV in 1954, came up with the idea of the Sports Personality of the Year award, which of course is still running some sixty years later?

Answer – Paul Fox. 

16.  The parakeets that infest south-west London with their loud cries and startling green plumage all descend from a flock that escaped when which film was being made at Shepperton Studios?

Answer – The African Queen.

17.  Which US President was the last to have served in the American Civil War? He began as a private in the Union army and ended up as a brevet major.

Answer – William McKinley.

18.  What did Arthur Ransome call the ‘ugliest and most abominable of London’s unpleasing suburbs’?

Answer - Balham. 

19.  Only one author has won both the Booker Prize for Fiction and the Carnegie medal for children’s fiction. Who?

Answer – Penelope Lively. 

20.  At Wimpy restaurants in the early 1970s, a Wimpy was a hamburger and, perhaps more memorably still, a Bender was a round sausage. What was the fishburger called?

Answer – Shanty. 

This story was from September Issue issue. Subscribe Now