Friday’s answers

Andrei and Teletext posed the questions for which they get my thanks.

Should they have stumped us all they can claim a virtual batch of chocolate rough by leaving the answers below.


2 Responses to Friday’s answers

  1. Andrei says:

    My Rosamond , my only Rose,
    that pleasest best mine eye,
    The fairest flower in all the world,
    to feed my fantasie:
    The flower of my affected heart,
    whose sweetness doth excell,
    My Royal Rose a hundred times,
    I bid thee now farewell.

    A verse from a very old ballad

    (1) Who was the Rosamund referred to in this ballad?

    Her name was Rosamund Clifford, a noted beauty and mistress to King Henry II of England

    (2) What does her name Rosamund mean?

    I have always heard it was from Latin “Rose of the World” Teletext thought it Germanic meaning Gentle Horse or Horse protector – looking it up both are given

    The Latin derivation seems more romantic and appropriate

    (3) What was the fate of this Rosamund according to legend and the ballad?

    The real Rosamund died young before she was thirty

    The legend has it she was murdered by the King’s wife, queen Eleanor of Aquitaine in a maze

    (4) Rosmonda d’Inghilterra is a 19th century Italian opera covering these matters – what does the title translate to in English?

    Rosamund of England – listening to a recording of this inspired the questions

    (5) Whose voice is uttering the words farewelling Rosamund in the excerpt above?

    King Henry himself as he is about to leave for France

  2. Teletext says:

    Ghengis Khan ruled a large Khanate. When he died, the area was split into 4 Khanates with the largest and most important being present day Mongolia and China.

    1. Who was Ghengis Khan’s grandson who ruled as Khan of all Khan’s (Khakhan) for many years and under his rule the empire grew even more?

    Kublai Khan who became the first ruler of the Yuan Dynasty which he set up about 8 years after becoming the Khakhan

    2. Who succeeded him as Khan and what was the relationship between the two?

    His grandson Temur (Temir) who was the son of Zhenjin (Chingkim) who was Crown Prince but who died from an illness some 8 years before Kublai. It is believed that Zhenjin and Marco Polo were close friends. Also, Zhenjin was Kublai’s second born son. His first born died at an early age.

    3. What was the name of the City where this person ruled from and what is it’s current name?

    Khanbaliq or Beijing was the Capital City whilst Xanadu or Shangdu was the summer capital

    4. At it’s peak, what percentage of the earth’s inhabitable land did the Mongol Empire cover?

    About 20%. This is probably the most amount of inhabitable land that any nation has ever controlled. It included all of China and Russia through to Poland and Hungary and virtually all of the Middle East. They never ventured south of the Himalayas.

    5. The Mongol’s unsuccessfully tried twice to invade what modern day country?

    Japan. They also tried 3 times to invade Vietnam. With virtually all of SE Asia, the Mongols ended up not invading but used a tribute system of leaving rulers in place so long as they kept paying tributes to Khanbaliq. It is interesting that they never tried to take power in India.

    6. Which large European city did the Mongol Horde come very close to invading before withdrawing and retreating due to the death of their Ilkhan (local Khanate ruler)?

    Vienna. At the time the Mongol Empire also stretched as far as Hungary in southern Europe

    7. Who was the Venetian who traveled to China and became an “adviser” to the Khakhan?

    Marco Polo

    8. Who traveled with this person to China and returned with him 24 years later?

    His father Niccolo and uncle Maffeo. Another uncle (Marco) had established himself as a trader in Constantinople. Both Niccolo and Maffeo had journeyed to China (Kithai) earlier and were there when Marco was born back in Venice. Marco did not meet his father or uncle until they returned to Venice when Marco was about 12 years old.

    If you have an interest in Marco Polo, an excellent book to read is “The Journeyer” by Gary Jennings. It is a fictional book but very much based on fact. Jennings also wrote excellent historical novels “Aztec”, on the invasion of the Spanish, “Spangle”, about a circus that starts at the end of the American Civil War and ends with the Franco Prussian war and “Raptor” which was about a person in the time of Theoderic the Great in the late 400’s and early 500’s.

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