Thursday, 23 August 2018

Through History with the Monday Quiz in Exile: The 1490's

It's been a fortnight, and that means that it's time for the latest installment of our weekly quiz feature here at the Leaflocker. This week we're looking at the 1490's a decade that was kind of a big deal for Europeans in the exploration game, so we're confident that there's some answers to some of these questions lurking in your head this week. Share them with us in the comments below.

Last week was a very hard quiz indeed, not that that stopped John, who somehow managed to eke out 7 points, and was only bettered by the M Cats superior knowledge of Bavarian legislature.

1) There's a famous poem that our Usonian readers will undoubtedly have had thrust at them at some point in their schooling and that has been passed through the joys of Hollywood to the rest of us. I'd say that it's not a particularly good poem, but perhaps as a doggerelist myself I shouldn't be casting stones? Anyway, what year was immortalised in the poem whose opening couplet finishes with "....Columbus sailed the ocean blue"?

2) After sailing the ocean blue for a while, the star of that poem established an ill-fated European colony on the island he discovered and named Hispaniola. The colonists fought among themselves over the riches of the island, and were then killed by the Taíno natives, who Columbus had described in his journal as "without arms and very cowardly". In modern times, which two nations share the island?

3) Just a few years after Columbus was claiming to have discovered a sea route to India, having missed by a narrow margin of some 18,000 kilometers, which Portugese explorer, having sailed around the southern tip of Africa, first successfully managed the feat?

4) On his travels, he stopped in at many cities of the Kilwa sultanate based in modern-day Tanzania, which after a 500 years as an important trading confederation would soon enter a rapid decline in the face of growing European intervention. Kilwa's wide influence led to the spread of which trade language, the most commonly spoken African tongue today?

5) In 1492, Martin Behaim, a cartographer from Nuremberg who'd been working for the Portugese, created a vellum map that he called the 'Erdapfel', which is represented above. The Erdapfel is now housed in the German National Museum where work to digitise it has been underway since 2011. What makes this map special?

6) Somewhere between India and the Caribbean, the Hồng Đức Era was ending with the death of the fourth Lê emperor. Over the course of nearly four decades on the throne he promulgated a new code of laws, encouraged the spread of Confucianism and pursued a number of wars, most notably capturing Champa capital and annexing most of Cham territory to become a new southern province, where many Cham still live as a minority group today. Where were the Lê enthroned?

7) While the Portugese were busy exploring finding new places to try to spread Christianity, their Spanish neighbours were doing the same at home. In 1492 when the Catholic monarchs gave an ultimatum for Jews in Spain to leave or convert, who sent their navy to collect the Jews and bring them to a new home?

8) On 7th of February 1497, Shrove Tuesday, followers of friar Girolama Savonarola, de facto ruler of Florence, destroyed thousands of sculptures, paintings, books, musical instruments, mirrors or anything that they considered could lead to temptation, including many precious and irreplaceable works of art. How is this event (which gives its name to a fabulous flop of a movie made in 1990 which gives me an excuse to post yet another picture of a young Tom Hanks) commonly known?

9) Meanwhile in England, Henry Tudor spent most of the 1490's fighting off a series of small but dangerous challenges to his reign by Perkin Warbeck, who claimed to be Richard of Shrewsbury, the son of Edward IV, and who raised support and/or armies in Burgundy, then France, then Ireland, then Burgundy again, then York, then Scotland and finally among the nobles of which perennially rebellious English duchy before finally being captured and hanged in 1499?

10) While we're vaguely on the the topic,  in 1494 James IV of Scotland ordered 380 litres of what, the first record of production in the country? Today, the Scottish industry exports this volume every 15 seconds.

Happy quizzing! Remember, those that fail to learn from history are condemned to repeat it, and all those long sea voyages aren't good for you.


John said...

Yeah, last week was tough. Let's see how this one goes!

1) 1492.

2) Hispaniola is shared between Haiti and the Dominican Republic (not to be confused with Dominica!)

3) Vasco da Gama?

4) Hm. Swahili?

5) Given the name sounds like it would transliterate to "earth apple", I'm going to guess that it was the first (known) map to be represented on a globe.

6) Let's guess modern Vietnam.

7) Not the english, at any rate! I'm going to go out on a limb and actually guess the pope.

8) Shrove Tuesday is mostly associated these days with preparation for fasting in Lent - and the "use up all of the rich foods that will spoil while we're fasting" attitude that led to the cooking of pancakes and the modern epithet of "pancake day".

9) Hm, somewhere a bit removed. Cornwall, perhaps?

10) Surely it's whisky!

The M Cats said...

0) Still hard
1) 1492 (it rhymes, so it must be true)
2) Netherlands and France (they like boats back in the day)
3) Magellan (we have heard of him)
4) Swahili (its a thing that probably exists)
5) Africa is shown as larger than europe (a guess was needed, and so is given)
6) Malaysia (it is a real place that exists and is near vietnam we think and Vietnam seemed like the obvious answer so, tricked you I guess)
7) the Pope (because we know things like that) Its probably Urban VII or something like that if we have to be specific but it would be a lousy quiz adjudicator who expected specifics like that
8) Easter Burning (look, we got nothing)
9) Lancaster (like the planes)
10) Whiskey (surely)

We wish ourselves luck. Incidentally, EG vs OG game 3 (and the series as a whole really) was really exciting, down to the wire stuff, well worth a watch)

UnwiseOwl said...

I mean, the commentators seemed very excited about it, anyway.