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12 March 2012

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Latest Questions: 12 March 2012

Commonly known as a germ, what is the scientific term for an infectious agent (such as a virus or a bacterium) that causes disease in its animal or plant host? Pathogen
What is the record time for a transatlantic flight (from Heathrow to JFK) - set by Concorde in February 1996? 2 hours, 52 minutes, 59 seconds
Who left Tomorrow's World in 1977 after being described by the programme's new editor, Michael Blakstad, as a "dinosaur"? Raymond Baxter
What is the familiar name for the science of matter? Chemistry
How many times is the water jump encountered in a 3,000 metre steeplechase? 7
How many teams have contested the Rugby League Super League each season, since 2009? 14
Who has been BBC Radio's racing correspondent, since taking over from Peter Bromley in 2001? Cornelius Lysaght
Don Murray-Henderson (1962-72), Jim Pope (1972-2001) and Roger Tilling (since 2001) have successively been the announcers on which long-running TV programme? University Challenge
Which distinctively-shaped mountain in Wyoming features in the climactic scenes of the 1977 film Close Encounters of the Third Kind? Devil's Tower
In which city was the writer Anthony Burgess born? Manchester
Running Bear, in 1959, was the first hit and only No. 1 for which US singer? Johnny Preston
On which British canal are the Bingley Five Rise Locks? Leeds & Liverpool
In which US state are the Bonneville Salt Flats? Utah
Which hugely successful and highly acclaimed 1989 miniseries, starred Robert Duvall and Tommy Lee Jones as former Texas Rangers Gus McCrae and Woodrow Call? Lonesome Dove

It was based on a Pulitzer-prizewinning novel by Larry McMurtry - a fictionalised account of a real-life (1868) cattle drive by Charles Goodnight and Oliver Loving.

Who commanded the Texian (sic) forces that defended the Alamo against Santa Anna's Mexican force in 1836? William B. Travis
Which eccentric Texan saloon-keeper and Justice of the Peace, of the 1880s, styled himself "the Law West of the Pecos"? Roy Bean
In 1965, which racecourse became the first in the UK to use starting stalls? Newmarket
Who played the title role in the Bridget Jones films (Bridget Jones' Diary 2001, and Bridget Jones: the Edge of Reason 2004)? Renée Zellweger
Who died of dysentry off Portobelo, Panama, in 1596, aged 55 and was buried at sea in a lead coffin? Sir Francis Drake
Which modern European country seceded from the Netherlands in 1830? Belgium
Which island in the Thames at Twickenham, accessible only by a footbridge (or by boat), was known in the 1960s as a music venue? Eel Pie Island
Who is the presenter and choirmaster in the BBC TV series The Choir (from 2006 - including The Choir: Military Wives, 2011)? Gareth Malone
Which Anglesey town has a name that comes from the French for "beautiful marshes"? Beaumaris
Who sang with The Pogues on Fairytale of New York, in 1987? Kirsty MacColl

The credit was simply to The Pogues.

Whose third wife was (and still is) Wilnelia Merced, the 1975 Miss World, whom he met while they were both judging the 1980 competition? Bruce Forsyth

The third Mrs. Forsyth is from Puerto Rico.  She is almost 30 years younger than her husband.

What is the title of the poem, written in 1927, whose first line is "Go placidly amidst the noise and haste"? Desiderata

Desiderata became famous after being found near the deathbed of Adlai Stevenson in 1965; long thought to date from 1692 (which was in fact the foundation date of a church in Maryland whose rector included it in a compilation), it later proved to have been written as recently as 1927 by one Max Ehrmann, whose heirs were able to cash in on its belated popularity and claim royalties.

What's the surname of the astronaut played by Charlton Heston in the 1968 film Planet of the Apes? Taylor

Roddy McDowell played an ape called Cornelius.

"Los descamidos" (the shirtless) was a term, originally derogatory but later used with pride, for the followers of which national leader? Juan Peron
Which Shakespeare play contains the line, "Neither a borrower nor a lender be"; and also (three lines later) "This above all: to thine own self be true"? Hamlet
Which historic Spanish coin was worth two escudos? Doubloon
Which dance originated in New York around 1927 and is named after a famous aviator? The Lindy Hop
Which mythical character is depicted in a famous weathervane at Lord's Cricket Ground? Old Father Time
What is the famous nickname of Nick Freeman, an English solicitor born in 1956? Mr. Loophole

© Haydn Thompson 2012