Thursday 12 July 2012

Not Many People Know That!

Life is full of quirky little facts that are known only to those small proportion of the population that go to pub quizzes, or play Trivial Pursuits on a nightly basis. I have to admit I find them fascinating, so I thought I list a few of the ones I know that I definitely have not copied from books. It would be great if readers of this blog added their own little-known facts as a comment. Who knows, it could become the basis for a best selling book...alongside all the other best selling books on trivia!

But here goes:-
- An inch was the length of Henry VIII's thumb from tip to the middle joint
- A foot was the length of his foot (strangely enough)
- A yard was the length of his stride.
- Only 3 countries in the world are completely surrounded by one other country (Lesotho, San Mareno and, of course, the Vatican City).
- The original London Stone placed by the Romans to celebrate the city's founding can still be the Bank of China , if you ask nicely.
- Ben Jonson was buried in Westminster Abbey standing upright because he didn't consider himself worthy to take up the same amount of space as people like Chaucer.
- Nelson ceremonial tomb was in fact made for someone else who presumably didn't want it in the end.
- Allegedly only 10% of Americans have a passport and only 20% of them use theirs. On the other hand the States does have pretty well anything the rest of the world has...with the exception of a history older than a very few hundreds of years.
- A subaqua SCUBA diver spent weeks deep below Winchester Cathedral taking hundreds bags of cement into the furthest recesses to save the building from collapse into the waterlogged land.
- The Vikings actually got as far as Greece. Presumably they went for the Retsina.
- The Mona Lisa is painted on a piece of wood.
- Napoleon was actually above average height for a Frenchman in the 1800s
- Napoleon's tomb has no name on it, any indication whose tomb it is , or any inscription at all. However people have little doubt it's The Man.
- The pyramids were not built by slaves, but by skilled stone masons and the heavy work was mostly done by farmers during the "off" season. However it wouldn't have looked so good on the wide screen if the "slaves" were seen to be haggling over their hourly rate and double time on feast days!
- King Herod's wife's name was Doris (absolutely true)
- The oldest living tree in he world is a Brstlecone Pine called Old Methuselah in Eastern California. It's 4850 years old. Happy Birthday to It!
- £5 notes are made from linen, not paper.
- If you put lead shot one layer deep into a saucer and swirl it round, when the shot come to a halt they will form an exact octagonal shape...providing the shot pieces are all perfectly round.
- Water is not colourless. It is actually blue.
- Michael Caine NEVER said "and not many people know that". Peter Sellers said it for a joke and put it on his answer machine. Caine hates it!

That'll do from me. Now it's your turn!

Blog on, Dudes!

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