Brain of Britain
Ultimate Quiz Book
Starting as What Do You Know? in 1953, and changing its title in 1967, BBC Radio 4's Brain of Britain is probably ‘the most venerable of general knowledge quizzes anywhere’. With this book you can challenge your own brain with 2,000 questions (50 quizzes of 40 questions each) drawn from the programme’s archives. By way of introduction, the current presenter, Russell Davies, has written a history of Brain of Britain and shares his thoughts on ‘this quiz lark’.
National Birds of the World
From Angola's Red-Crested Turaco to Zimbabwe's African Fish-Eagle, more than 90 avian species have been adopted as official symbols of national identity. Each bird is pictured and described in this comprehensive guide, which features data such as size, diet and habitat alongside an explanation of reasons for the bird's use as a national emblem, information on its conservation status and examples of its prevalence in the stamps, coats of arms and wider culture of its country. Foreword by Chris Packham.
The Unbelievable Truth
Introduced by David Mitchell as 'repentance' for Radio 4's Unbelievable Truth panel game and its 'dozens of episodes consisting of likely-sounding rubbish interspersed with accurate information rendered implausible', this book presents the true, if often rather bizarre, facts about subjects from Admiral Lord Nelson to Wool. Among all this bona fide information are Graham Garden's less than reliable lectures on a number of topics including Armadillos, Isaac Newton and Mrs Beeton.
What's in a Name?
The scientific names identifying every species of bird are used around the world, though few know how they came about. Fully illustrated with colour photographs, this alphabetical guide traces hundreds of birds’ names to their habits, appearance, and even folklore. Accipiter – for hawks – is derived from the Latin ‘to take’; the crevice-roosting wren is called Troglodytes, or cave-dweller; while the nightjar is Caprimulgus because of an old belief that it sucked goats’ milk.
The Eponym Dictionary of Birds
Written by the authors of Whose Bird, but greatly expanded to list both scientific as well as vernacular birds’ names, the Dictionary has over 4,100 entries and covers more than 10,000 genera, species and subspecies. It provides brief details of the eponymous names – including steel magnates and princes along with the explorers, scientists and ornithologists – from Aagaard (the Buffy Fish Owl, ssp Ketupa ketupa aagaardi) to Zusi (Bogota Surnangel, Helioangelus zusii).