Archive for January 7, 2009


3] Which crime writers were:

a) a tank commander: Charles Willeford
c) an English, Games and History school teacher: Gladys Mitchell
d) a Gordon Highlander: Raymond Chandler
e) given a 20 year sentence for armed robbery: Chester Himes
f) a theatre director in East Africa: Henning Mankell
e) struck down by Blackwater Fever in West Africa: Richard Austin Freeman
f) born in Racamulto, Sicily: Leonardo Sciascia

4] What is the connection between a Cardboard box, and Engineer’s thumb and a Greek interpreter ?

They are all Sherlock Holmes stories by Arthur Conan Doyle.

The Adventure of the Engineer’s Thumb in Strand Magazine March 1892.
The Cardboard Box in Strand Magazine January 1893
The Greek Interpreter in Strand Magazine in September 1893.

5] What links a Swiss opium addict, a British navy commander and a fictional Swedish detective?

Friedrich Glauser, the Swiss crime writer was addicted to opium. One of Germany’s major crime fiction prizes is called the Glauser Prize.

Ian Fleming was a British naval commander. A prize the Ian Fleming Steel Dagger is awarded by the British Crime Writer’s Association for the best crime thriller of the year.

The Swedish Crime Writer’s prize for translated fiction is named the Martin Beck Prize. Martin Beck is the fictional detective who features in the ten book collection by Maj Sjowall and Per Wahloo.

[to be continued] 


I am pleased that some people had a lot of fun with the Quirky Quiz. 

The winner and runners up managed to score from 12 out of 13 to 9 1/3 out of 13.   Well done! 
The winner came from British Columbia, and the runners up from Texas and Tasmania. 
Their very well earned prizes will be on their way just as soon as the big freeze that has hit Devon thaws and I can get to a Post Office. 

Now I will start to list the answers over the next week with explanations of how you were meant to work out the connections. 

1] Who is the man in the photo and what is the connection with an English hangman?

The photo is of course the author of The Thirty Nine Steps and many other books John Buchan, who in 1935 became 1st Baron Tweedsmuir, and Governor General of Canada. Buchan established the Governor General’s Awards for literature.

‘An English hangman’ and Canada. Arthur B. English was Canada’s hangman from 1912-1935 he is said to have used the pseudonym Arthur Ellis. The Crime Writers of Canada award for the best crime fiction novel is known as the Arthur Ellis Award.

2] Arthur Ward, and a medieval order of knights. How are they linked by an 1882 Act of Congress?

Arthur Ward is better known as Arthur Henry Sarsfield Ward the crime fiction author Sax Rohmer, who created the menacing Chinese villain Fu Manchu.

In 1882 Congress passed the Chinese Exclusion Act that suspended Chinese immigration a ban than lasted 60 years. 

But a medieval order of knights……the Knights Templars

Templars…..Templar…..crime fiction….Simon Templar, the Saint

And who was the creator of The Saint?
Leslie Charteris born Leslie Charles Bowyer-Yin and whose father was Chinese and mother English. 
Charteris relocated to the USA in 1932 but was excluded from permanent residency by the Chinese Exclusion Act and had to keep renewing a six month visitor’s visa until congress personally granted him residency rights.

[To be continued]