Total Quiz XIII

Archived questions and answers to AE's history contest
Total Quiz XIII was held on October 26, 2007. Almost 40 participants took part, the largest amount of Total Quiz. The number of questions was extended to 20, which became the standard for subsequent quizzes.

-- Summary --
Quiz moderators: Imperator Invictus, Poirot
Winner: Decebal

Total Quiz questions viewing options: Click here to hide answers

Total Quiz XII

1. Who is widely acknowledged as the founder of Islam?
Answer: Muhammad, The Prophet
2. What chief of the Ottawa led a rebellion against the British in North America in 1763?
Answer: Pontiac
3. Upon what existing city did Constantine build a new city in 330 A.D. which he called "New Rome"?
Answer: Byzantium
4. What ancient city, founded by a great conqueror, was known for a lighthouse and a library?
Answer: Alexandria
5. What King of the Mali Empire was known for incorporating Timbuktu into his empire and his famed pilgramage to Mecca?
Answer: Mansa Musa
6. What is the name of a famous literary piece, commonly accepted as the work of a noblewoman during the Heian Period in Japan, is also arguably claimed by many to be the first novel in the world?
Answer: The Tale of Genji
7. What civilization overthrew Hammurabi's Dynasty?
Answer: Hittites. While Kassites rule Babylon shortly afterward, the dynasty was already deposed by the Hittites. There are no known Babylonian Kings of the same dynasty after Samsu-Ditana was overthrown in the Hittite Invasion. Since the question was about the overthrow of the dynasy, Hittites is the clear answer. The Kassites did not rule Babylon until 24 years after Samsu-Ditana, the last King of Hammurabi's dynasty, was overthrown. During the gap period, the rule of Babylon may have passed to another foreign dynasty known as the "Sea-Land" Dynasty. (Source: Journal of Cuneiform Studies, 1957)
8. As the important statesmen gathered in Versailles to end the Great War and reorganize the balance of power, an unknown young nationalist who worked in various odd jobs and spoke multiple languages tried to voice his disapproval, but to no avail. The likes of Woodrew Wilson, David Lloyd George, and Georges Clemenceau never knew that the young nationalist would one day rise up and become an important statesman himself. Embracing a leftist ideology and embraced as his nation's idol, he led an independence movement against one foreign power and a major conflict against another. Today, an important city is named after him and a national currency bears his picture. Who is he?
Answer: Ho Chi Minh, father of the independence and communist movements in Vietnam
9. With the help of a military genius, my armies terriorized an entire continent, and were only stopped by the news of my uncle's death. Later, I set up my capital close to a 'sea.' Though questions about my father's bloodline and legitmacy circulated among my extended family, I was quite influential and helped one of my cousins ascend to power. After my death, one of my brothers eventually took my place and waged wars against another cousin of mine. Who am I?
Answer: I am Batu Khan, son of Jochi and grandson of Genghis Khan. Jochi's parentage was questioned because Genghis' wife Borte may have conceived Jochi while she was a captive of the Merekids. With the command of Subotai, Batu's Mongol invasion of Europe devastated much of the continent, only to be stopped by the news of Ogedei Khan's decease. Upon return, Batu consolidated his power and built his capital at Sarai, close to the Caspian Sea. Batu helped his cousin Mongke ascend to the Great Khan, at the expense of Ogedei's clan. After Batu's death, his brother Berke eventually became Khan and waged wars with Hulegu Khan, who established the Il-Khanate.
10. Mother and daughter. Both mother and daughter shared the same name, and both married famous husbands whose ideals were radical for their times. The mother was herself a radical, was best known for a radical and influential piece of writing, and died soon after giving birth to the daughter. The daughter grew up and later produced a very well known piece of writing of her own. 1. Name the mother and her most influential piece of writing. 2. Name the daughter and her most famous piece of writing.
Answer: The mother is Mary Wollstonecraft, author of A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, who married radical atheist philosopher William Godwin. 2. The daughter is Mary Shelley (also known as Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin), author of Frankenstein, who married romantic poet Percy Bysshe Shelley.
11. In the 15th century, I rose from a very religious upbringing to become leader of a powerful tribe whose name begins with the letter "Z." We conquered a major city with a name similar to the surrounding landscape. Other famous warriors have come from the country this city is now capital of, though not many have been honorable. Who am I?
Answer: Sharifa Fatima
12. I was extremely wealthy and well known for defeating a famous rebel. For a while, I essentially ruled a great power with two other powerful men, until one day I got ambitious and decided to attack a powerful empire. Needless to say, I suffered defeat in a decisive battle, as my heavy infantry proved no match for the enemy's cavalry tactics. As a result, both my son and I were killed. Some captive soldiers from my shattered army were exiled, by the enemy empire, to remote regions, where they were believed to have encountered forces from another powerful empire. Who am I?
Answer: I am Marcus Licinius Crassus, one of the richest men in Rome, known to have defeated Spartacus, and formed the First Triumviate with Pompey and Caesar. Crassus' campaign against the Parthian Empire ended in disaster and his own beheading by the Parthians. After the decisive Battle of Carrhae, some of the captive soldiers in Crassus' army were exiled to the eastern frontier of Parthia, where they most possibly encountered forces from the Han Empire.
13. Though of humble origins, her beauty elevated her to imperial ranks. Her husband died young and consequently, as mother of the youthful heir, she began to taste the nectar of power. Her thirst for power was so great that she eventually mercilessly deposed her discontent son and ruled alone. As a result of her actions, a new emperor was crowned in the west. After relishing in power for years, she was brought down to earth by a coup, and died in exile. Who was she?
Answer: Empress Irene, the beautiful Athenian who later became ruler of the Byzantine Empire. She blinded her own son, Constantine VI, to secure her position as sole ruler of Byzantium. Seizing upon the lack of a male Roman Emperor, Pope Leo III crowned Charlemagne as the new Roman Emperor. Irene was eventually brought down by conspirators and exiled. Note, the answer is not Empress Wu, because Empress Wu never died in exile.
14. I was a king of two countries. Before I became King, I participated in the killing of a lot of innocent people. Some time later, I was chosen as king of a great country. I literally escaped a few months after my coronation to claim the throne of another country. Who am I and of which two countries was I king?
Answer: I was known as Henry III of Valois in Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth or Henry III in France
15. A Tale of Two Generals. One general was famously featured in a painting, while the other, in a novel. The two commanders led two opposing armies in a decisive battle of a much bigger war that has more than one name. Both generals led brilliant military careers prior to the battle, but both suffered wounds from the battle and died as a result. The outcome of the battle eventually led to the end of one country's dominance over a certain region that was, at the time, very large in area but with very little population. Name the two generals.
Answer: 1. James Wolfe, who commanded the British troops 2. Louis-Joseph, Marquis de Montcalm, who commanded the French troops. Wolfe and Montcalm met at the Plains of Abraham, near Quebec City, where Wolfe's British troops had the better day. Yet, both generals died as a result of fatal wounds. As a result of the battle, the British were able to secure the St. Lawrence River and force the surrendering of Quebec City and later Montreal from the French. The confrontation between Wolfe and Montcalm marked a significant point in the North American theatre of the Seven Years' War (known as the French and Indian War in the United States, as the Pomeranian War, and as the Third Silesian War, etc). In the treaty following the war, the French gave up much of its claims in North America to the British, including Canada. Wolfe was famously featured in The Death of General Wolfe, by Benjamin West, while Montcalm was portrayed in James Fenimore Cooper's The Last of the Mohicans.
16. The despot and the reformer. The despot had a famous nickname, ruled a certain region for decades, and was known for excessive cruelty against his enemies; his cruelties were even noted by a famous poet. Though nominally serving under the reformer, the despot ruled with virtual independence, thriving in an age of constant conflict between foreign powers, forming various alliances to advance his interests. Nevertheless, the reformer had the last laugh and orchestrated the despot's ultimate demise. Struggling in an era of change and conflict, the reformer tried to bring vitality back into his stagnant country, resulting in some notable accomplishments. Yet, despite his efforts, his country lost one important region to an independence movement, suffered major defeat at the hands of a foreign power, and was on the verge of losing another major region by his death. Name the despot and the reformer.
Answer: The despot is Ali Pasha, known as the Lion of Janina/Yanya. Ali Pasha took advantage of a weak Ottoman court and formed alliances with the French and British. His cruelties were well noted, even by Lord Byron, who visited his court. Ali Pasha was romantically portrayed in Dumas' The Count of Monte Cristo. The reformer is Sultan Mahmud II, who carried out various reforms, such as destruction of the janissaries, aimed at revitalizing the decaying Ottoman Empire. Nevertheless, during his reign, Greece gained independence and the Turks lost to Russia in the Russo-Turkish War of 1828�29. Just before Mahmud�s death, the Turks were on the verge of losing a war against Muhammed Ali, viceroy of Egypt.
17. I lived in a dark century of conflicts and wars around Europe. I still managed to do many impressive things to ensure my security. A composer and artist died in the year in which I was born, both of whom have also made their name famous enough to be known amongst the wise and unknown amongst all others. During my time of rule, I had to fight and was soon defeated by my enemy. Then I surrendered to another of my enemies whom I had fought previously and whom my state had fought many times previously. The enemy was also an enemy of my enemy so I became one of the most loyal servants of my previous enemy. I later on became a great prince and served my former enemy loyally and my successors governed the same territories until my successors were defeated by our common enemy that I had fought before. Who am I?
Answer: I am Gotthard Kettler, the last Grand Master of the Livonian Order. Elsewhere, the name may be spelt as Goddart. The territory he governed was the Duchy of Courland"
18. Prince, assassin, and king. The prince sent the assassin to kill a rival king. The assassin was disguised as an ambassador, pretending to make an offering to the rival king, carrying the map of a region in the prince's realm and the head of someone whom the king wanted dead. The assassin almost succeeded in killing the rival king, but still ended up as sword fodder, partly because of a court doctor. The king went on to assume a very prestigious title. Name the prince, the assassin, the king, and the king's prestigious title.
Answer: The trick is to make everyone think it is a European question. But it is not! The prince is Prince Dan of the state of Yan, during the Warring States Period in China. The assassin is Jing Ke, famously portrayed in later literature as a great hero. The king is King Ying Zheng of the state of Qin, who later became Qin Shi Huang Di, the First Emperor of China. During the assassination, a court doctor flung a bag of medicine at the assassin, giving King Ying Zheng time to run and draw his sword.
19. This is a story of three brothers and a foreign conqueror: The first brother was the heir apparent of the realm for a long time, but at the time the father of the three died in an epidemic, the father had a change of heart and named the second brother as successor. However, the second brother soon died in the same epidemic that killed the father. Since there was no heir apparent, the first brother believed himself to be the ruler, but many people supported a third brother, which led to civil war. Initially, the third brother was captured by the first brother, but he escaped with the aid of a girl. Then, the third brother defeated the first brother, and seemed to be on his way to ruling the realm until an outside invader captured him. In the end, the first brother was killed by his own supporters and the outside invader conquered the realm. Give the names of the three brothers as well as the name of the leader of the outside invaders.
Answer: A: Huascar, B: Ninan Cuyochi, C: Atahualpa; leader of the invaders: Francisco Pizarro.
20. I am considered a legendary hero by many, and though of lowly birth, my heroic actions against a great empire and its powerful emperor are still recounted today. I was defeated and held captive by the powerful rival emperor, but managed to escape and then carve out a realm of my own. After my death, my son was captured, blinded, and executed by the rival emperor. After my grandson, power in my realm passed on to a certain group of influential men; then, many years afterwards, the territories I initially carved out were absorbed by forces from another great empire. Who am I?
Answer: Shivaji, founder of the Maratha Empire/Confederacy. Though of a lower caste, Shivaji led the Marathas in heroic battles against the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb. Though once defeated and held captive at Agra by Aurangzeb, Shivaji managed to escape and continue to fight the Mughals. After his death, his son Sambhaji was captured and executed by Aurangzeb. After his grandson Shahuji, power of the Marathas passed to a group of ministers called the Peshwas. In the end, the Marathas, like the Mughal Empire, fell into the clutches of the East India Company and the British Empire.
Question Authors: (user who contributed the question) 1. poirot; 2. Imperator Invictus; 3. Imeprator Invictus; 4. poirot; 5. Imperator Invictus; 6. by poirot; 7. Imperator Invictus; 8. poirot; 9. poirot; 10. poirot; 11. Mila; 12. poirot; 13. poirot; 14. cavalry4ever; 15. poirot; 16. poirot; 17. Rider; 18. poirot; 19. Decebal; 20. poirot;

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