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Quizzes & Puzzles 13

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Written by   645
1 month ago (Last updated: 4 weeks ago)

Some new problems with which to exercise the brain. But first a look at answers and solutions to Quizzes & Puzzles 12. New problems below the image (cartoon).

Answer to Quiz 12:1

Which is the oldest national flag still in use?

That is said to be the Danish flag, Dannebrog. According to legend, the design was seen for the first time in 1219, at the battle of Lyndanisse, but there is no documentary proof of that. The oldest document showing it is Gelre Armorial, from the middle of the 1300s.

However, the present Danish flag (image above) is not identical to the old one, which had a symmetric cross with the centre in the middle. The Nordic cross (with the centre slightly to the left) is documented from 1748.

You can read more about the Nordic Cross in Nisshōki, Taegeukgi & the Nordic Cross.

Answer to Quiz 12:2

What causes the illness schistosomiasis?

The answer is parasitic worms. This illness is also known as Bilharzia.

Answer to Quiz 12:3

Guernica” is famous, but what is it?

It is a painting by Picasso, arguably one of his most famous works. It is also the name of a Basque town. It was bombed in 1937, during the Spanish civil war, an event that inspired Picasso to create this painting as a protest against the war.

(For copyright reasons, I cannot display the painting here.)

Answer to Quiz 12:4

What is “the Pythagorean comma”?

As an answer, I quote section VI, of my article The Octave & The Music of the Spheres. This is a little technical, but should be understood by everyone who knows something about music theory and the difference between tempered an untempered scales.

Pythagoras discovered that, if a string was shortened by 2/3 he got a perfect fifth, a very consonant interval, easy for the human ear to perceive. If he then continued like that, using the new tone to create a new fifth and repeated this in twelve steps, he returned to almost the same tone as the first one. That is, he went through all the tones in the chromatic scale (of twelve tones) but spread over seven octaves. (Note here the occurrence of the numbers seven and twelve.) So when he returned to the tonic, it was seven octaves higher. He then projected these twelve tones into one and the same octave and got the chromatic scale.

This is a simplification, because his result was not exactly the same tone seven octaves higher, although it was close. There is a small difference between the 12th fifth and the 7th octave, this difference is called the Pythagorean comma. It is approximately 1/8 of a tone step (or 1/4 of the distance between two keys of a piano), and it is not without consequences. It always was a problem for tuning instruments, and it is the reason why we got the "tempered" scale. One began to divide each octave in twelve equal steps. It is a false tuning, both mathematically and perceptually, which is "only almost" right. This "almost", however, is sufficient for most people whose ability to perceive consonances is not above average, but for someone with perfect pitch this can be torture. Actually, absolute pitch is a defect for musicianship in an environment where tempered and untempered instruments are mixed. It is a situation that can become torturous, even cause health problems. One example is the combination of piano and symphony orchestra. A piano is the ultimate tempered instrument, while many of those in a symphony orchestra are not. This is unbearable for some people.”

Answer to Quiz 12:5

A great author, one of the foremost novelists of world literature, is said to have spent 12 hours per day writing, 6 hours eating, and 6 hours sleeping. While he wrote, he drank coffee all the time. Sometimes it is claimed that he died by overconsumption of coffee. That conclusion should be taken with a grain of salt, but he did indeed drink a lot of it, probably 50 cups per day or more.

He expressed his devotion to this beverage in "The Pleasures and Pains of Coffee", where he concluded:

Coffee is a great power in my life [...]”

Who was this author?

This, of course, was Honoré de Balzac (1799-1850). You can read more about him and other fanatic coffee drinkers in Do You Drink Much Coffee - I Bet You Can't Beat These Enthusiasts.

Answer to Quiz 12:6

Which sport are we talking about if we say it is...

“... a team sport, played on ice, where two teams take it in turns to slide stones made of granite towards a target – known as a House.“

We are talking about curling. The definition is quoted from

And now some new exercises for brain & memory...

Quiz 13:1

What was the name of the crocodile god of old Egypt?

Quiz 13:2

Strictly,many things are called nuts, without botanically being nuts at all. Which of the following is a genuine nut?

  • Coconut?

  • Pistachio?

  • Walnut?

  • Peanut?

  • Almond?

Quiz 13:3

There are different legends about the foundation of Rome. One of the best known stories attributes the foundation of this city to a pair of twins. What were their names?

Quiz 13:4

Who was the first ruler who used the title “Sultan”?

Quiz 13:5

What is the most common metal on Earth (in the crust)?

Quiz 13:6

Many animals have something called Jacobson's organ, what function is it involved in?

You'll find answers and solutions in the next “Quizzes & Puzzles”.

Quizzes & Puzzles has now its own label in my Index, where all issues of the series can be found.

In my INDEX, you can find all my writings on Read.Cash, sorted by topic.

Copyright © 2022 Meleonymica/Mictorrani. All Rights Reserved

(Cartoon by Christian Dorn/Pixabay, CC0/Public Domain.

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Written by   645
1 month ago (Last updated: 4 weeks ago)
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Till now i have just heared about Mona leza painting now I have read about the new one Guernica. Amazing Pythagoras comma Wahoo it's just like physics experiments. Death with more coffee it's just OMG.

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1 month ago

Whew! I was only able to answer one of the past quizzes correctly and looking at the new one, I don't think I can do much either. For quiz 13.2 I'd choose Almond Quiz 13.5 I'd say silver For the rest, I rest my case😁

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1 month ago

Well, it was a good try, but I'm sorry, both are wrong.

Are my questions too difficult? If they are, at least there is more to learn from the answers then.

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1 month ago