More quizzes

Three of a kind

If you are sure of the answer, write it down.
If you are not sure, discuss the question with someone else.
If you need to search for an answer, use dictionaries and reference books first,
and then suitable websites.
If you really have to ‘make a guess’, write your answer plus the reason you
chose that answer.


Trendy trousers

1 Denim is a popular material used for clothing. Where does its name come from?
a) The person who invented it in 1913,
b) Something to do with a town in France,
c) An anagram of idem, a Latin word meaning ‘the same’, ‘likewise’, because
denim always looks the same.

2 Jeans are usually made of denim but why are they called jeans?
a) Something to do with a town in Italy,
b) The woman who first made them called them ‘Jean’s trousers’,
c) The first name of the mayor of the town in France (above) was Jean-Claude

3 Zip fasteners are essential in jeans. Why are they called zips?
a) Because they are very easy to use,
b) They were invented by the person who devised the USA postal code system,
the zip code, meaning Zone Improvement Plan,
c) It’s an imitative word first used in the 19th century.


Fascinating food

4 Many people spread butter on their bread and toast. Many others use margarine.
Where did the name ‘margarine’ come from?
a) It was named after the first person to take out a patent on the new
product, Margaret Reno (1843–1902).
b) It is an invented word based on an acrostic Meals Are Really Good + -arine,
c) It comes from a Greek word which describes its pearly appearance.

5 In colder climates or in cooler weather, some of us eat a sweet pudding after
the main course of our meal. The best pudding of all is Christmas pudding!
‘Pudding’ comes from:
a) The old word for an animal’s stomach,
b) Another spelling of ‘puddling’,
c) An old Scottish word which originally meant ‘paddock’, because the first
puddings were made by farmers in Scotland.

6 Blancmange is a delicious jelly-like sweet dessert stiffened with cornflour.
What was it originally?
a) White meat,
b) White fish,
c) White sauce.


Elp help

7 I can find only five words in English which end with –elp. We all know what
‘help’ means, but what about kelp?
a) It is a sort of Australian sheepdog,
b) It is a type of seaweed,
c) In Scottish folklore it is a water-spirit in the form of a horse.

8 A whelp is:
a) A cam on the camshaft in certain types of rotary engines,
b) A short version of ‘with help’ used in abbreviated written messages,
c) A puppy or cub of an animal such as a wolf.

9 A yelp is:
a) A cry or bark of pain,
b) A fictitious creature said to roam in the mountains of Tibet,
c) An acrostic for Youth Education Liberal Party, a political party in South
Africa.


Odd ends

10 Almost sure is an anagram of the word for something you can probably do but
which I definitely cannot do, because I am the wrong shape and too old. What is
it?

11 A Welsh rabbit, also known as a Welsh rarebit, is:
a) A marsupial mammal found only in South America,
b) A particular type of rabbit which is so rare it is found only in the
mountains of Wales,
c) A dish which some people enjoy at supper-time.

12 Here are the names of three parts of your eye:
1) iris
2) retina
3) pupil
They come from very old words with other meanings. Which is which, and why?
A. A Latin word meaning ‘net’
B. The colours of the rainbow
C. A little doll.

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The answers are below, in small print to make them difficult to read, of course. Please have a go at answering the questions first. You won’t learn much if you cheat!






 

 

 

 

 

 






1 Denim is a popular material used for clothing. Where does its name come from?
Something to do with a town in France. 300 years ago, the material was called serge de Nimes, serge from Nimes, a town in France.
2 Jeans are usually made of denim but why are they called jeans?
Something to do with a town in Italy. Almost 600 years ago, the word jene meant Genoese, meaning from the town of Genoa, where the original strong cloth was made.
3 Zip fasteners are essential in jeans. Why are they called zips?
It’s an imitative word first used in the 19th century. (Imitative means that it sounds like the noise made by something.)


4 Many people spread butter on their bread and toast. Many others use margarine. Where did the name ‘margarine’ come from?
It comes from a Greek word which describes its pearly appearance. The word was adapted from margarique, a French word for margaric acid, which has a pearly appearance. That came from Greek margarites which means pearl.
5 In colder climates or in cooler weather, some of us eat a sweet pudding after the main course of our meal. The best pudding of all is Christmas pudding!
‘Pudding’ comes from: The old word for an animal’s stomach. Sorry, but it’s true! About 900 years ago, a puding or poding was an animal’s stomach filled with meat, like a sausage.
6 Blancmange is a delicious jelly-like sweet dessert stiffened with cornflour. What was it originally?
White meat, white fish, white sauce. All three! It’s from French blanc manger, meaning ‘white food’. About 500 years ago it was also applied to the sweet white dessert.

7 I can find only five words in English which end with –elp. We all know what  ‘help’ means, but what about kelp?
It is a type of seaweed.
8 A whelp is: A puppy or cub of an animal such as a wolf.
9 A yelp is: A cry or bark of pain,


10 Almost sure is an anagram of the word for something you can probably do but which I definitely cannot do, because I am the wrong shape and too old. What is it? somersault
11 A Welsh rabbit, also known as a Welsh rarebit, is: A dish which some people enjoy at supper-time. It’s a savoury dish made of  melted cheese mixed with other ingredients, sometimes including beer, and served on hot buttered toast.
12 Here are the names of three parts of your eye:iris The colours of the rainbow and also the name of a flower, originally the
name of the Greek female messenger of the gods who appeared in a rainbow. retina A Latin word meaning ‘net’ because early physicians thought the retina looks a bit like a net. pupil A little doll, from Latin pupilla which means a little doll or little
person, because that’s what you see when you look at the image of your face reflected in someone else’s eye.


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