Mastermind Club
   Mastermind Club 








Which Ray Bradbury novel opens “It was a pleasure to burn”? Fahrenheit 451

In which television programme was “I don’t believe it” a catchphrase?

One Foot in the Grave

The chef Rick Stein has a restaurant, bistro, café, fish and chip shop, cookery school, pub and three shops in and around which town in Cornwall? Padstow

In which country do 100 Stotinki make a Lev? Bulgaria

The Olympian Lord Burghley succeeded to which Marquessate in 1956?

Marquess of Exeter

Whilst living in Eastbourne in the 1950s, which notorious medical practitioner was Burghley’s Doctor? John Bodkin Adams

Which artistic movement was founded by Georges Braque and Pablo Picasso? Cubism

Who owned Devon Loch, which agonisingly failed to win the 1956 Grand National? Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother

Which former cabinet minister was nicknamed Tarzan? Michael Hesletine

According to W H Auden, what was “bringing the cheque and the postal order”?

The Night Mail

What was the forename of Mrs Beeton, of household management fame? Isabella

What term for a military chaplain comes from the Spanish, Italian and Portuguese for Father? Padre

Which grain is used to make Polenta? Maize

What was the name given to five boats owned by Edward Heath from 1969-79?

Morning Cloud

What instrument was played by the bandleader Ted Heath? Trombone

Of what is phobophobia an irrational fear? The fear of fear itself

Who famously told his audience in 1981 “go back to your constituencies and prepare for government”? Sir David Steele, at the Liberal Party Conference

What title is shared by novels by Arthur Conan Doyle and Michael Crichton, both featuring dinosaurs?

The Lost World

What number is the European standard number for calling emergency services? 112

The Widener is the library of which American university? Harvard

Which sweet sparkling wine takes its name from the town in Piedmont around which it is made? Asti Spumante

William III landed at which Devon port en route to deposing James VII and II in 1688?


Who is the Patron Saint of dancers? St,Vitus

Which philosopher’s works include A Treatise of Human Nature and Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding ? David Hume

In the classification system of organisms, which level comes between Kingdom and Class? Phylum

Which athlete won a unique distance treble in the 1952 Olympic Games to add to a gold medal won at 10,000 metres 4 years earlier? Emil Zatopek

What did Sir Peter Viggers notoriously try to claim for using his Additional Costs Allowance, causing sales of them to subsequently collapse? A (Stockholm) Duck House

Who was the Bohemian religious reformer burned at the stake for heresy in 1415, leading to religious conflict in the country for several decades? Jan Hus

Which part of the human body is divided into the Duodenum, Jejunum and Ileum?

The small intestine

Which eponymous literary heroine had the surname Harlowe? Clarissa

Fed up with her name being mispronounced, who told Jean Harlow “the t is silent, as in Harlow”? Margot Asquith

"Trio Juncta in Uno" is the motto of which Order of Chivalry?

The (Most Honourable) Order of the Bath

What is the largest desert in South America? Patagonian Desert

Which publisher founded Penguin Books in 1935? Allan Lane

Who is the former Home Office pathologist whose Crowner John series of novels were based in 12th century Exeter? Bernard Knight

37) Edwin Jones was a driver on the Merioneth and Llantisilly Railway in which television series?

What distinguishes Sculls racing from other forms of rowing racing?

Sculling uses 2 oars per person, rowing only 1

Which man of letters once observed “no man but a blockhead ever wrote, except for money”? Samuel Johnson

John Tomlinson in 1840 is the first man credited to partake of which hobby?

Stamp Collecting

Which popular dance was denounced by the Daily Mail in 1922 as “reminiscent only of Negro orgies”? The Charleston

In 2009, what were banned by Captain Wayne Keble of HMS Bulwark on the grounds they were “the devil’s vegetable”? Brussels Sprouts

To what did Hilaire Belloc reputedly suggest should be appended “Candidates should not attempt more than six of these”? The Ten Commandments

In mathematics what does Σ stand for? A Summation

Mary de Bohun was the mother of which King of England? Henry V

Which Roman road ran from Exeter to Lincoln? The Fosse Way

The Swan of Tuonela is part of which Sibelius composition? Lemminkäinen Suite

If in music a piece is to be played very fast, what is the instruction? Presto

What sport is overseen by the Fédération Internationale des Quilleurs?

Ten & Nine Pin Bowling

Speedbird is the call sign used when contacting Air Traffic Control by aircraft from which airline? British Airways

The Anglo-Saxon poems The Wanderer, The Seafarer, The Husband’s Message, The Wife’s Lament and Resignation are to be found in which book? The Book of Exeter

On a map, what are joined by an isotach line? Places of equal wind speed

Rod Evans, Ian Gillan, David Coverdale and Joe Lynn Turner have all been vocalists for which rock band over the last 42 years? Deep Purple

Which Danish city is home to a Viking Ship Museum and a cathedral that has been the main burial site for their monarchs since the 15th century? Roskilde

The Dartmoor Brewery in Princetown brews two beers. One is Dartmoor IPA (Inmate’s Pale ale). What is the two word rhyming name of the other? Gaol Ale

Which 1956 John Wayne film had the tagline “He had to find her... he had to find her...”?

The Searchers

The “Game, Set and Match” trilogy, comprising Berlin Game, Mexico Set and London Match, is amongst the works of which writer? Len Deighton

What name was given to chapels established with an endowment for the saying or singing of masses for certain of the dead, usually the donor, his family or friends?


Opening in June 2009, which Welsh racecourse is the first new National Hunt racecourse to open in Britain for over 80 years? Ffos Las

Which two cheeses are layered together to make a Huntsman cheese?

Double Gloucester and Blue Stilton

According to weather lore, what will happen if sheep turn their backs to the wind, rats are more restless than usual or moles throw up more earth than usual? It will rain

Which African mammal gets its name due to the fact Dutch settlers thought it looked like a deer? Hartebeest

Which famous rally was first held in January 1911 and won by Henri Rougier?

Monte Carlo Rally

Of which republic are English, Malay, Mandarin Chinese and Tamil the four official languages? Singapore

Which was the first Mr Man book to be published, the character being an orange person with a small blue hat whose extraordinarily long arms were good for things such as making breakfast without getting out of bed, but he preferred another use for them?


Coming in various shades thereof, what colour is a Kumquat? Orange

What theatrical malpractice is referred to by the term “papering the house”?

Purchasing tickets for one’s own show to boost apparent box office receipts

What is the televisual connection between Annette Crosbie, Dorothy Tutin, Anne Stallybrass, Elvi Hale, Angela Pleasance and Rosalie Crutchley?

They played the Six Wives of Henry VIII in the BBC series of that name

The piano cycle Iberia, composed from 1906-9, was the work of whom?

Isaac Albéniz

Claire Clairmont, mother of Lord Byron’s daughter Allegra, was the half-sister of which writer? Mary Shelley

In which famous novel is Grimpen Mire to be found?

The Hound of the Baskervilles by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

In which sport has the World Championships been held on eight occasions since 1978, the Netherlands beating Belgium in the final every time except 1991, when Belgium beat the Netherlands? Korfball

Which acclaimed Devon-based band is comprised of Steve Knightley and Phil Beer?

Show of Hands

Abu Bakr in 632AD was the first man to hold which title? Caliph

75ft is the standard stopping distance for a car travelling at what speed? 30 mph

What would you use VOIP for? Making telephone calls over the internet (it stands for Voice Over Internet Protocol)

To which city did Sir Francis Younghusband lead an expedition in 1904? Lhasa

In a building, what name is given to the holes in walls left behind when scaffolding is removed? Putlog Holes

Bluebeard, Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood and Puss in Boots were tales first collated by which Frenchman? Charles Perrault

What part of the human body is officially registered as being 2.5 on the Mohs scale?


Of which island were the Hauteville dynasty kings from 1130 to 1194? Sicily

Hartley Hare, Topov the Monkey and Octavia the Ostrich were characters in which children’s television series of the 1970s? Pipkins

In a Borodin opera, of whom is Jaroslavna the wife? Prince Igor

Which are constructed using the science of gnomonics? Sundials

At approximately 20% of total Malt sales worldwide, what is the world’s best-selling Malt Whisky? Glenfiddich

Valkyrie II & III, Shamrock I-V and Endeavour I-II were nine successive losing British entries in which sporting competition? The America's Cup

What is the English name for the constellation Columba? The Dove

Tendai Shū was a 6th century academic school of which religion? Buddhism

Which 1970s drama series was based around a haulage business owned by the Hammond family? The Brothers

What was the outcome of the law case taken by Meletus Meletou of Putthus against Socrates Sophroniscou of Alopece?

Socrates was sentenced to death, killed by drinking hemlock

The largest painting in The Louvre, measuring 22’ by 32.5’, is The Wedding Feast at Cana, painted in 1562-3 by whom? Veronese

Nicholas Liverpool is the president and Roosevelt Skerrit the Prime Minister of which Caribbean island, the second largest town of which is Portsmouth? Dominica

Chemical compounds that have the same molecular formulae but different arrangements of atoms in their molecules are known as what? Isomers

Monsieur Clergé in 1740 is held to be the first world champion in any sport. In which sport did he hold this title? Real Tennis

What are Cruls, first seen in 1882, De Chéseaux, first seen in 1744 and Lexell, first seen in 1770, amongst others? Comets

What expanded from 10 digits to 13 digits in 2007?

International Standard Book Numbers (ISBNs)

The Sanson family were a notable family in France for performing what role?


White, Black, Lombardy and Balsam are types of which tree? Poplar

Which writer observed in a letter in 1940 “Old age is a tangle of Disappointment, Despair, Doubt, Dereliction, Drooping, Debt and Damnable Deficiency and anything else that begins with a D”? Hilare Beloc

Which verse drama opens “To begin at the beginning; It is spring, moonless night in the

small town, starless and bible black”? Under Milk Wood by Dylan Thomas

Which sport starts with a Face Off? Ice Hockey

Quito is the capital of which country? Equador

What is a tarn? A small mountain lake

Which capital city has a name that translates as Blackpool? Dublin

Who designed the famous K2 and K6 Telephone Boxes? Giles Gilbert Scott

What colour is the rock Azurite? Blue

What name is given to fear of the number 8? Octophobi

What instrument was played by the jazz musicians Count Basie, Thelonius Monk and

Jelly Roll Morton? Piano

The historian Hugh Trevor Roper fell foul of which historical hoax? The Hitler Diaries

Which Swedish botanist laid the foundations of the binomial system of classification of

fauna and fauna? Carl von Linnaeus

Speaking of which, which butterfly under this system has the name Pieris Brassicae?

Cabbage White

Which Coronation Street character was run over by a Blackpool tram? Alan Bradley

Who at the age of 14 won the Wimbledon Girls’ title in 2008, the first British winner for 24

years? Laura Robson

Who is the father of Viscount Severn? The Earl of Wessex

In the term ro-ro ferry, what is ro-ro short for? Roll on - Roll off

Which infamous artwork was signed “R. Mutt 1917”? Fountain by Marcel Duchamp

Which of the services is nicknamed “The Andrew”?

The Royal navy (after Andrew Miller, a particularly effective press-ganger)

What is the primary home ground of Lancashire County Cricket Club? Old Trafford

Which comedian has adopted the personal of The Pub Landlord? Al Murray

Launched in 2004 and played on a 21x21 square board, how many tiles are used in

the board game Super Scrabble? 200

Which hymn has been banned by Southwark Cathedral due to it being “not in the glory of

God”? Jerusalem

In Mathematics, if the average is the sum of a group of numbers divided by the quantity

of them, what is the term for the middle number of this group if lined up in numerical

order? Median

Which artist can be seen in the mirror in the painting best known as

The Arnolfini Wedding? Jan Van Eyck

According to Mohammed, which heavenly personage dictated the Koran to him?

The Archangel Gabrial

Which marine mammal has a distinctive single tusk that can reach lengths of up to 3 metres?


Which soup has a name derived from the Tamil for pepper-water? Mulligiawny

Which radioisotope is used by archaeologists for dating organic objects? Carbon-14

The first public library in Britain was constructed by the Guildhall in London by the

executors of which famous Lord Mayor? Richard (Dick) Whittington

In Greek mythology, where did the nymphs called oreads live? In Mountains

Which mammal has the Latin name Lepus europaeus? (Brown) Hare

Which musical instrument was invented by Bartolomeo Cristofori in 1709 by substituting

a hammer action for the plucking action of the harpsichord? The Piano

Which famous menthol lozenges are made by Lofthouse of Fleetwood?

Fishermans Friend

Ken Russell's acclaimed documentary A Song of Summer was about which composer?

Frederick Delius

David Tennant took time off from saving the universe to appear in two Shakespeare

plays in 2008. Which two? Hamlet & Loves Labours Lost

What is the stage name of the double act formed by Ian and Janette Tough?

The Krankies

What would you use SD or XD cards for?

Data Storage (in digital cameras, mobile phones, computers etc)

An informal price list against which MP’s Additional Costs Allowances can be claimed has

been nicknamed after which department store? John Lewis

What is the name of Gaudí’s unfinished cathedral in Barcelona? Sagrada Familia

What are Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw and Slytherin?

The four houses at Hogwarts School in the Harry Potter series of books

Which word comes from the German for substitute; although common usage has this

substitute as somewhat second-rate? Ersatz

In which periodical did Cartoon No. 1by John Leech appear in 1843? Punch

According to Robert Burns, what “gang aft agley”? The best-laid plans of Mice and Men

Who played Mark Antony in the 1953 film version of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar?

Marlon Brando

What does Brontomancy use to tell the future? Thunder

In the world of medicine, what does CPR stand for? Cardiopulmonary resuscitation

The Oud is an Arab version of which musical instrument? The Lute

What would you do with feuilles de brick? Cook with it (its a type of pastry)

Who, on seeing a commemorative stone for one of his predecessors engraved "Laid by

the Poet Laureate", remarked "Every nice girl's ambition"? John Betjamin

What was Filippo Brunelleschi’s most famous work of architecture?

The Dome of Florence Cathedral

Triggered by the playing of the country’s song in the 1974 Eurovision Song Contest, in

which country did the Carnation Revolution take place? Portugal

Where are the National Archives based? Kew

Which motorway links Ross-on-Wye and the M5? M50

What is the name of the famous castle in South Ayrshire built by Robert Adam in

1777-90 for the Earl of Cassilis? Culzien Castle

Which significant post in the Channel Islands is held by Michael Beaumont?

Seigneur of Sark Seigneur of Sark

The Ptarmigan is a member of which family of birds? Grouse (Lagopus)

Which football club won its first major trophy for 58 years in 2008?

Portsmouth, when they won the FA Cup (their last major trophy being the League

Championship in 1950)Portsmouth, when they won the FA Cup (their last major trophy

being the League Championship in 1950)

Which band had Top Ten hits in 1969-70 with Living in the past, Sweet Dream and

Teacher/The Witch’s Promise? Jethro Tull

Which is the smallest of the Great Lakes? Lake Ontario

Which company makes the Aquos series of televisions? Sharp

In which sport did E Morse play for Oxford from 2005-2008?

Cricket (he’s actually Ed J Morse)

Theodora, a former actress, was the wife of which Byzantine Emperor? Justinian

Who fought a duel with Ivan Skavinsky Skavar, leading to the death of both of them

Abdul Abulbul Amir

What colour are the flowers of the poisonous plant Lily-of-the-Valley? White

The appellation Entre-Deux-Mers is something of a misnomer as it actually lies between

two rivers. Which rivers? The Dordogne and Garonne

Which 2008 film, derived from a stage musical, became the biggest-grossing of all time in

the UK? Mama Mia

Which Marriott Edgar monologue, made famous by Stanley Holloway, is set in

Blackpool? The Lion and Albert

Christy Moore, Donal Lunny, Liam O’Flynn and Andy Irvine were the original members of

which legendary Irish folk group? Planxty

Which Italian Duchy was ruled by the Farnese from 1545-1731 and then the Bourbons

to 1799 and again from 1847-59 Parma

The loss of water vapour from the surface of a plant is known as what? Transpiration

With reference to the 2008 Olympics, what is the significance of 9.69 seconds and 19.30

seconds? They were the world record times run by Usain Bolt when he won the Men’s

100m and 200m titles

What is the name of the Roman soldier who is traditionally said to have smote Jesus with

his spear at the Crucifixion? Longinus

In what sort of films did the cartoon couple Joe and Petunia appear in the 1970s?

Public Information films

What was the name of Jane Seymour’s character when she became a “Bond Girl”, and in

which film in the series did she appear? Solitaire in Live and Let Die

When Henry VIII was looking for a new wife after the death of Jane Seymour, which

newly-widowed Princess of Denmark, famously painted by Holbein, was a candidate, but

declined to marry him on the grounds she would only do so if she had two heads, one of

which would be at his disposal? Christina

Which metal is used to denote a 10th wedding anniversary? Tin

Based in New York, what is the full name of the press agency AP? Associiated Press

As a rule, how many turrets were there between each milecastle on Hadrian’s Wall? Two

Which composer is best remembered for his “Roman Trilogy” of Fountains of Rome

(1916), Pines of Rome (1924) and Roman Festivals (1928) along with the ballet

la Boutique Fantastique? Ottorino Respighi

In the Old Testament Book of Judges, who is the only female Judge? Deborah

Which country is the primary home of Garifuna music? Belize

In which month do the Leonid meteor showers occur? November

Which football club fell foul of Victoria Beckham when it tried to trademark its nickname?

Peterborough United (their nickname being The Posh which Beckham claimed was hers by right

despite Peterborough having used it long before she unfortunately became famous)

John Part, who rejoices in the nickname Darth Maple, has been a world champion in

which sport? Darts

In photography, what term is given to the ratio of the diameter of the aperture to the

length of the lens? F-Number (or Focal ratio)

The whisky Old Pulteney is distilled in Scotland’s most Northerly mainland whisky

distillery. In which fishing town is this? Wick

The Cassowary is native to which continent? Oceania

The British Lawnmower Museum can be found in which Lancashire seaside town?


Kupi Luwak, harvested from the faeces of Indonesian jungle cats, is a type of what?

Coffee Bean

What is someone suffering from if they have galactorrhoea?

Excessive secretion of breast milk

What was founded by A C Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada in 1965?

The International Society for Krishna Consciousness (more popularly called Hare


In medieval times, what did Sumptuary Laws regulate?

What people could buy (particularly dress) based on their income and/or social status

Which Terry Nation drama series was “reimagined” for the worse by the BBC in 2008?


The BBC is also pointlessly remaking The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin. Who is

stepping into Leonard Rossiter’s shoes as the title character? Martin Clunes

What connects Ecce Homo, Regardless of History, Monument, Alison Lapper Pregnant

and Model for a Hotel? They are the sculptures that have appeared on the fourth plinth

in Trafalgar Square rather than putting some proper statuary on there

From which Norfolk town do The Gavin Fuller Experience come from? Kings Lynn

What is the penultimate letter of the Greek alphabet? Ψ (Psi)

Which actor, when asked for a suggested epitaph for himself in 1925, replied "I would

rather be in Philadelphia"? W.C.Fields
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