Quiz of the Year: 52 weeks 52 questions, part one


'Tis the season to cast an eye back over the events of 2013. But how much do you remember? Test yourself with the Magazine's four-part end-of-year quiz. Part one covers January to March.

Christmas generic

1.) Multiple Choice Question

Singer Beyonce admitted miming during her rendition of the American national anthem at the inauguration of President Obama in January. Why did she say she did it?

  1. She had a throat virus
  2. She is a perfectionist
  3. She forgets the words of songs that aren't her own

2.) Multiple Choice Question

Germany's Angela Merkel and France's Francois Hollande celebrated the 50th anniversary of which pact on 21 January?

  1. Strasbourg Convention
  2. Elysee Treaty
  3. Paris Peace Treaties

3.) Multiple Choice Question

In February, a 214-year-old law in Paris was formally expunged. What did it ban women from doing?

  1. Wearing trousers
  2. Drinking alone
  3. Addressing older men as "tu"

4.) Multiple Choice Question

A little-known perk in the basement of the House of Lords was described as "anachronistic" by a lord who wanted to find out whether it was paid for by the taxpayer. What was it?

House of Lords
  1. Turkish bath
  2. Fencing piste
  3. Rifle range

5.) Multiple Choice Question

Daniel Day-Lewis became the first man to win three lead acting Oscars but he needs one more to equal the record for any person. Who holds that honour?

Daniel Day-Lewis
  1. Meryl Streep
  2. Ingrid Bergman
  3. Katharine Hepburn

6.) Multiple Choice Question

Still with the Oscars, how did an Iranian news agency edit Michelle Obama after she awarded Argo Best Picture?

Michelle Obama
  1. Deleted some of her words
  2. Digitally altered her dress
  3. Removed her altogether

7.) Multiple Choice Question

A teenager in Iceland won a court battle to use the name given to her at birth. Why did authorities reject the name Blaer?

  1. Wasn't a proper feminine name
  2. Considered bad luck
  3. Name of a god from Norse mythology

8.) Multiple Choice Question

Pope Francis became the head of the Catholic Church in March. What was one of the first things he did, which the Vatican said was a sign of his humility?

Pope francis
  1. Pay his hotel bill
  2. Pay a visit to his predecessor, Benedict
  3. Make pasta for his cardinals


Pope Francis, who had stayed at the Domus Internationalis Paulus VI hotel in Rome during the papal election, surprised hotel staff when he stopped by to pick up his luggage and settle the bill.

Pope Francis pays bill

9.) Missing Word Question

Rare whale * found on beach

  1. poo
  2. vomit
  3. tooth

10.) Multiple Choice Question

A rare egg fetched 66,675 at auction in March. Which long-extinct bird is it from?

Giant egg
  1. Thunder bird
  2. Dodo
  3. Elephant bird

11.) Multiple Choice Question

New York's Grand Central Terminal turned 100 early in the year. The famous zodiac ceiling depicts a Mediterranean winter sky with 2,500 stars. But what is wrong with the zodiac?

Grand Central Station
  1. It's missing Pisces
  2. It's backwards
  3. Pisces appears twice

12.) Multiple Choice Question

Hawaii passed an act to protect celebrities from paparazzi. What was it dubbed?

  1. Steven Tyler Act
  2. Bruce Springsteen Act
  3. Jon Bon Jovi Act


  1. In a later interview, she said it was because she was a "perfectionist" and - due to lack of rehearsal time - "did not feel comfortable taking a risk".
  2. It was the Elysee Treaty, which was signed by Charles de Gaulle of France and Germany's Konrad Adenauer on 22 January 1963.
  3. It was trousers. The law from 1800 had been modified in 1892 and 1909 to allow women to wear trousers if they were "holding a bicycle handlebar or the reins of a horse".
  4. It's a rifle range. Lord Tyler wanted to know who pays for the range and how Parliament ensured the security of weapons used there for sport.
  5. It's Katharine Hepburn, the most decorated film star with four best actress Oscars.
  6. It altered her dress. It was Photoshopped to cover up her bare shoulders and neck.
  7. Blaer was not considered a proper feminine name. Icelandic law requires names to comply with Icelandic grammar and orthography. It means light breeze.
  8. He paid his hotel bill. See next page for details.
  9. It's whale vomit - known as ambergris, which is still sometimes used to make perfume. The 6lb lump found in Morecambe, Lancashire, could be worth 100,000.
  10. It's the elephant bird. The partly fossilised egg is 30cm high, 21cm in diameter and more than 100 times the size of a chicken egg.
  11. It's apparently backwards. No-one knows for sure why this is, but the Vanderbilt family, who built and owned the station claimed it wasn't an accident and that it was intended to show the zodiac from the divine perspective.
  12. It's the Steven Tyler Act. The Aerosmith singer pressed for change after photos of him and his girlfriend were published in a magazine.

Your Score

0 - 3 : Blurred

4 - 8 : Nearly in focus

9 - 12 : Pin sharp

PLUS there's a special bonus question each day.

In addition to the 12 questions above, we also pose an extra puzzler for each of the four parts of this quiz. That's how we reached the magic total of 52 questions.

With each part of the quiz we publish photographs - the first of which is below. What is the link between the images over the four days? Part two, part three and part four can be found here.

Horse painting

For a complete archive of past quizzes and our weekly news quiz, 7 days 7 questions, visit the Magazine page and scroll down. You can follow the Magazine on Twitter and on Facebook.

The bonus question is now closed

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