Weekly Quiz 2014: 13

RESULTS: 4 April 2014

Four members submitted excellent analyses of the question about the ornithological “either/or” riddle.  Usually this is thought to be Dr Watson’s sighting of either a gull or a curlew in HOUN. Our member team of Margie Deck and Sheila Holtgrieve, “Gwen” and “Daisy” from Seattle, were first to submit with brilliant and very thorough textual, scientific and scholarship reviews favouring the gull.

Second in was Denny Dobry “Kirby” who submitted an equally adroit analysis offering evidence for either a city bred or a country bred goose in BLUE. This was a new theory in the extant scholarship and very clever; it hinges on the validity of the actual existence of a “crop” in a goose. Town geese, not having crops, were posited to have undergone an evolutionary change over time, thereby producing a crop due to London’s pollution.

And our third submission was from fellow member, Michele Lopez “Reggie”  president of Italy’s Uno Studio in Holmes, who offered his precise analysis of the gull/curlew hypothesis, also favouring the gull.

All were well-done and well-supported by both Canonical, scientific and scholarly evidence. Each cited the specific BSJ articles of prior years that explored the issues of birds in the Canon.

There will be a modest article in the forthcoming issue of The Watsonian at the end of this month discussing aspects of this question. Those interested are invited to read more on the topic in the journal.

This week’s quiz was a question requiring research, both Canonical and scientific.

Please download the quiz question below.
Download the Week 13 Question.

Quiz Masters “Gwen” and “Daisy” Volunteer a Quiz

Our members from Seattle’s Sound of the Baskervilles, and intrepid Quiz Team, Margie Deck “Gwen” and Sheila Holtgrieve “Daisy” have devised a fascinating quiz for our members. It is all about unpublished Canonical stories and events.

Please send your answers to “Daisy” and “Gwen” at: thepawkypuzzler@yahoo.com

Margie and Sheila will answer you and will post the correct answers next week as a comment to this post.  Thanks very much to each of you for filling the Quiz hiatus with a wonderful test of knowledge!

The Quiz

SOB TEAM/Sheila “Daisy” and Margie “Gwen”

The Untold Tales

All questions relate to the untold tales mentioned in the canon.

All answers must include the story where the mention is found.

Scoring is five points for each correct answer; bonus question #20 is worth ten points due to the dual nature of the question.

One extra point per question will be awarded for including the correct page number from Buttons’ venerable 1930 Doubleday Edition.

  1. What vessel went missing in the mist?
  2. What does Watson deprecate and what will he do if it happens again?
  3. Holmes reminds Watson about a mild man who sought Holmes’ help; who was he and why did he want help?
  4. Only a very important issue could call Holmes from London as he was busy; what are the two things which had him busy?
  5. What fashionable person came to see Holmes and stayed part of an hour?
  6. In 1894 Watson had at least six cases which would furnish a narrative but apparently did not; name the cases.
  7. Lestrade mentions, in a letter to Holmes, a case involving a large, swarthy person; who is this person and what was his affair?<
  8. Holmes saved someone’s mother’s elder brother from murder; name the someone, the intended victim, and the villain who was to commit the crime.
  9. For whom did Holmes arrange an affair, and who reminded him of it the next year?
  10. Watson states that one July was striking due to several cases, one of which concerned a captain; describe the captain.
  11. Whose terror prevented Holmes from leaving, and what kind of terror was it?
  12. Name the deceased husband of a client who was also a client of Holmes in one of the early cases.
  13. While Holmes dug in vain in his commonplace book for a name his client wished him to know, he found the familiar names of two others with the same surname; give the three names and describe the three people.
  14. A client says to Holmes that he heard of Holmes in regard to a club scandal; name the client and the club.
  15. How did Holmes run down the coiner?
  16. Sherlock did not consult Mycroft about what case involving whom?
  17. What was coming to a head resulting in Holmes’ inability to go to Lewisham?
  18. In what abstruse problem was Holmes immersed in 1895?
  19. Name a king Holmes worked for and one he worked against.

Weekly Quiz 2014: 8

Flowers, anyone?

RESULTS: Denny Dobry has done excellent research and has sent a veritable catalogue of flowers and flowering plants in the Canon.  He is 21/21 for this week’s quiz honours. Margie Deck and Sheila Holtgrieve also submitted more than was asked and had a perfect 21/21 in the Team Category.  Elinor Hickey came close and added to the solutions. Well Done, all!  Answers are below:

Download Week 8 Questions and Answers.

Weekly Quiz 2014-7

This week’s quiz has to do with Canonical character inferences. Enjoy!

RESULTS:  A high participation quiz!  Five members with 7/7 and all receive the week’s honours:

Michele Lopez “Reggie;” Michael Ellis “Lobo;” Melissa Anderson “Faith;” Denny Dobry “Kirby;” and our Team: Sheila Holtgrieve “Daisy” and Margie Deck “Gwen.”

Congratulations!  Well Done!

Answers below:

file_download.pngDownload Week 7 Questions and Answers

Weekly Quiz 2014-6

Everyone did so well on the palindromes last week, here is one more. Good Luck!

RESULTS: The honours go to Denny Dobry “Kirby” with 25 points; Melissa Anderson “Faith” with 25 points; Dean Trunbloom “Stoker;” and our Team SOBs Margie Deck “Gwen” and Sheila Holtgrieve “Daisy” with 25 points.

ANSWER: Sherlock Holmes and Nero Wolfe = e-o and o-e, a palindrome of vowels frontwards and backwards.

file_download.png Download Week 6 Question

Weekly Quiz 2014-5

The Weekly Quiz is all about palindrome forms.  You’re going to love this one!

Results:  Excellent participation this week from Denny Dobry “Kirby,” with 25 points, James O’Leary “Pippin” and Elinor Hickey “Misty” coming next, and Team SOB with Margie Deck “Gwen” and Sheila Holtdrieve “Daisy” with 25 points. Congratulations all!

Questions and answers can be downloaded below:

file_download.pngDownload Week 5 Questions and Answers

Weekly Quiz 2014-4

Here is the weekly quiz for the fourth week of 2014.  It is all about place names. Please submit solutions to buttons@johnhwatsonsociety.com by 12 N on Wednesday, 29 January 2014.

RESULTS: Great participation this week. The honours for perfect performance of 25/25 + 5 = 30 points go to Denny Dobry “Kirby,” Michael Ellis “Lobo,” Kenneth Siarkiewicz “Cooper,” and our never-to-be-stumped team of Margie Deck “Gwen,” and Sheila Holtgrieve “Daisy.” Congratulations to all!

Please download the questions and answers below.

file_download.pngDownload Week 4 Questions and Answers.

Weekly Quiz 2014-3

Results: This was a very interesting quiz with no true “right” answers. We have two sets of answers tied at 25/25 from Sheila Holtgrieve “Daisy” and Margie Deck “Gwen” and from Denny Dobry “Kirby.”  We will publish both answers and allow you to debate the merits of both responses. As far as Buttons is concerned, everybody did a superb job!

The “Daisy” and “Gwen” and “Kirby” responses are below for downloading.

This week’s quiz is interesting (I hope). It’s all about relativities. Please download your copy below and submit answers by 12 Noon, Wednesday, 22 January 2014 to: buttons@johnhwatsonsociety.com


Download Week 3 Questions.


Download Daisy & Gwen’s Response.


file_download.png Download Kirby’s Response.

Weekly Quiz 2014-1 Results

Week 1 of 2014 was contested by 8 members and one team group. Those taking the honours with perfect scores and five bonus points are:

Member Individual: Denny Dobry “Kirby” of Reading PA. Placing next was Elinor Hickey “Misty” of Baltimore MD and James O’Leary “Pippin” of Natick MA.

Member Team: Margie Deck “Gwen;”  Sheila Holtgrieve “Daisy;” of Sound of the Baskervilles, Seattle WA with 20/20 + 5 = 25 points.

Congratulations to these intrepid Quiz Masters!

Answers are posted below.

Weekly Quiz #9: 15-20 November 2013

Weekly Quiz #9
15 – 20 November 2013; 4 pm (Pacific)

RESULTS:  Weekly Quiz #9 produced the following Quiz Masters: Answers are posted below.

Member Individual Category:  Michele Lopez “Reggie” took the honours with a perfect score of 20/20 plus the 5 bonus points for 25 total. Michele was closely followed by a two-way tie between Denny Dobry “Kirby” and James O’Leary “Pippin” with 19/20.

Member Team Category:  Sheila Holtgrieve “Daisy” and Margie Deck “Gwen”
took the Team honours once again in a continuation of their unbroken run with 20/20 plus 5 bonus points for 25 total.

Congratulations to all!

This week’s quiz is a similar to the classic quizzes that were used in past years to qualify devotees as having the requisite knowledge of the Canon to be designated “Sherlockians.”  In this version, the questions are focused on Dr Watson, are worth 5 points each with an added 5 point bonus for accurate citations. Submit your answers by 4 pm Wednesday, 20 November to buttons@johnhwatsonsociety.com.


  1. When and to whom did Dr Watson recommend large doses of a poison as a sedative? What was the poison? In which story? For whom?
  2. In what story was Dr Watson’s body in one chair and his legs upon another?
  3. In what story was Dr Watson settled into a well-worn, low armchair?
  4. To whom did Dr Watson ascend to a second time with a message?
  5. What time did Dr Watson sit down beside the fire to await Holmes’s return?
  6. Where was Dr Watson when asked to recall tracks?
  7. When was it sufficient for Dr Watson to share the sport and lend his humble help?
  8. What was the event that Dr Watson asked Holmes to give him the points about?
  9. What case was Dr Watson asked to add to his annals?
  10. When did Holmes and Watson ascend followed by a doctor?
  11. When Dr Watson turned up the time-table and found the last train gone, where had they wanted to go?
  12. When and where was the glare from the brickwork painful to Dr Watson?
  13. Holmes offers Dr Watson a cigar during a trip to where?
  14. What was the case that began with hot tea prior to the train on a winter morning?
  15. Whose father did Dr Watson have the pleasure of knowing?
  16. By what statement does Dr Watson paraphrase Descartes?
  17. What was another of Dr Watson’s bulls-eyes?
  18. To whom would the Dr’s bankers determine the worth of his guarantee?
  19. Dr Watson was with whom when he observed the faces in the diffused light from the shops?
  20. Dr Watson’s guest drank what at the first lunch where?


file_download.pngDownload Week 9 Questions



file_download.pngDownload Week 9 Questions and Answers

Weekly Quiz #8; Monthly Quiz #2: 8 – 13 November 2013

Weekly Quiz  #8
Monthly Quiz #2
8 November 2013 to 13 November  2013

RESULTS: Congratulations to our members who successfully participated in the weekly and monthly quiz: Denny Dobry “Kirby” scored 22/25 to take the Weekly Quiz Master Member Individual honours, followed by James O’Leary “Pippin” and Michele Lopez “Reggie”.

Margie Deck “Gwen” and Sheila Holtgrieve “Daisy” retained the Member Team Category for the week with 25/25, as well as the Monthly Team Quiz Masters. They are invincible!

The Monthly Quiz Master goes to James O’Leary “Pippin” with 80/100 points. He was followed closely by Michele Lopez “Reggie” of Italy who is working without the benefit of most of the Sherlockian scholarship and reference books.

The answers are posted below.

The Weekly Quiz #8 is also our Monthly Quiz #2. The theme is Scholarship Easily Researched. One of the hallmarks of some Sherlockians and Watsonians is their knowledge of the scholarship of the past 80 years. The sources for the questions this week are from publications found in most enthusiasts’ libraries.

Each question (there are only five) is answered in a book of scholarship that is widely known or readily available. Identify the original scholarly writer, the book where the reference appears, the object where called for, and the story referenced. Each accurate answer is worth 5 points.


  1. Who wrote “As for us, gentlemen, we wish to have our intelligence insulted. How did Holmes know about the snuff?”
  2. Who wrote that Mendelssohn’s Auf Flugen des Gesanges “might well have been [another] favourite with” Watson?
  3. Who wrote in what book that [name it] is located about one and one-half miles to the south-west of [name where] and has on it a logan stone that can be rocked by means of a natural handle? (give the author, book name, the story, the object and location described, and the source of the scholarship).
  4. Who scoffed at Holmes’s conclusion about a single dumb-bell and suggested Watson knew better but let Holmes have his fun? (The writer, the story, and where the reference is given)
  5. Who wrote, “I myself have stood in Baker Street and surveyed a suppositious upper story, wondering whether Sherlock Holmes was standing beside the dark hangings in the windows, looking up and down for a hansom-cab with a suspicious driver”? (Name the writer and the publication or book in which it appears; no story required).




Download Week 8 Questions




Download Week 8 Questions and Answers

Results: Weekly Quiz #6

The fun has produced Weekly Quiz Masters! The Answers are posted below.

Taking the Individual Member Category this week is our intrepid Quiz Master James O’Leary “Pippin”, who once again was first in with 20/20 correct answers plus the 5 bonus points for a total of 25 points. Denny Dobry “Kirby” was in with 19/20, and our new member from Italy, Michele Lopez “Reggie” and Dean Turnbloom “Stoker” tied with 18/20, and Elinor Hickey “Misty” was next.

The Team Member Category once again was captured by Margie Deck “Gwen” and Sheila Holtgrieve “Daisy”, who maintain their Team honours for the sixth week in a row.

Congratulations to all these Quiz Masters on what was a more difficult quiz than it first appeared.  On to Week #7!

Download Week 6 Questions and Answers

Weekly Quiz #5 Quiz Masters

The honours for Weekly Quiz #5 go to: (answers posted below)

Member Individual Category:  The first to submit with 20/20 correct answers plus 5 bonus points for textual citations is James O’Leary “Pippin”, who claims the honours this week.  He was followed by Denny Dobry “Kirby”, Dean Turnbloom “Stoker”, and Elinor Hickey “Misty”, who all came within two questions.

Member Team Category: Again (for the fifth week) our intrepid team of members from Seattle, Margie Deck “Gwen” and Sheila Holtgrieve “Daisy” took the team honours with 20/20, also plus the 5 bonus points.

Congratulations to these Quiz Masters and Quizzees who continue to be difficult to stump.  They will go forward to the Monthly Quiz #2.

Results: Weekly Quiz #4 and Monthly Quiz #1 with New Schedule (see below; also Answers below)

After grueling competition, the results are in!

Weekly Quiz #4:

Member Individual Category

Denny Dobry “Kirby” took the honors and James O’Leary “Pippin,” Elinor Hickey “Misty”, Ron Lies “Chips” were all close.

Team Member Category

Margie Deck  “Gwen” and Sheila Holtgrieve “Daisy” of Seattle continued their near-perfect streak for team honors.

Non-Member Category

Dean Turnbloom, in his final appearance as a non-member (he has joined the Society) took the honors.

Congratulations to these Weekly Quizzers and Weekly Quiz Masters. This was a difficult Weekly Quiz and required determining the best case of logic, textual evidence, and association or relationship to arrive at a string of connected answers that satisfied the clue design in both inductive and deductive directions (working form the beginning or working from the end). There are several possible sets of answers to the clues, but only one has the highest quotient of logic, evidence and association; however, alternatives that were supportable were considered and accepted when the proofs could be presented.  The best score in all categories was 8/10.

Monthly Quiz #1
This week’s quiz also was Monthly Quiz #1 among those who were successful in the prior Weekly Quizzes, which partly explains the somewhat diabolical nature of the quiz structure. The Monthly Quiz honors go to:

Member Individual Category

Denny Dobry “Kirby” is our first Monthly Quiz Master with a combined score on all quizzes this month of 47/60.

Team Member Category
Margie Deck “Gwen” and Sheila Holtgrieve “Daisy” are our first Monthly Quiz Masters with a combined score on all quizzes of 47/60.

Non-Member Individual Category

Dean Turnbloom is our first Monthly Quiz Master with a combined score on all quizzes of 47/60.

Congratulations to all of our Quiz Masters. You all now go forward to the Quarterly Quiz and on to the Annual Quiz.  As we all now see, participating in every quiz is how you boost your cumulative score towards the Annual Quiz Master honor, a reality shown by the equal scores of 47/60 by all three Quiz Masters. If one misses a week, it can mean a 10 to 20 point difference; of course, if one doesn’t miss a week, it can be a 10 to 20 point advantage . . . diabolique, n’est pas?

Responding to a participant’s excellent suggestion (Dean Turnbloom), Buttons will make it a bit easier for participants to have the time to work on the quizzes by changing the schedule a bit so that a weekend is available to you on every quiz. Therefore, the Weekly Quiz will now be posted on Friday by 4 pm (Pacific) and end on Wednesday at 4 pm (Pacific) when answers have to be received.  The next Weekly Quiz will be Friday, 17 October through Wednesday 23 October 2013.  Good luck to everyone, and for all of our members who have not participated, please join in the fun. A comment from one of our participants sums up what we gain when we work on the quizzes: ” . . . these [quizzes] are certainly broadening my Canonical knowledge.” Enjoy!

Here are the Weekly #4/Monthly #1 Quiz answers:

file_download.pngDownload Week 4 Questions and Answers

Weekly Quiz #3 Results

The results are in! The Quiz Master for Week #3 is Denny Dobry, “Kirby”. He was followed by James O’Leary, “Pippin” in second place.

There were no submissions in the Member Team Category, or Non-Member categories.

Buttons learned that our Quizzees are not too sanguine about Word Scrambles. Next week’s quiz returns to Canonical references that are readable; in fact, it consists of single word clues. You’ll love this one!

Weekly Quiz #4 is also Monthly Quiz #1 for those who are competing in the Monthly Quiz Master challenge. The Monthly Quiz Master will be eligible for the Quarterly challenge as well as the Annual challenge. Monthly quizzes are:

Member Individual Category
Denny Dobry, “Kirby”
James O’Leary, “Pippin”
Elinor Hickey, “Misty”
Ron Lies, “Chips”

Member Team Category
Margie Deck, “Gwen”
Sheila Holtgrieve, “Daisy”

Non-Member Individual Category
Dean Turnbloom

Good luck to you all.  Anyone may participate in Weekly Quiz #4 and we look forward to an expanded roster of members, teams and non-members who wish to match wits with the slow boy who mostly lunches. The questions will be posted by 12 noon (Pacific) on Monday 7 October 2013 and will end at 12 Noon (Pacific) on 12 October 2013.

Results: Weekly Quiz 2; September 23-28, 2013

The results are in and the answers are posted below.  We had good participation this week, and there is always room for more!

Individual Member Category: James O’Leary “Pippin” with all 20 correct answers.

Team Member Category: Margie Deck “Gwen” and Sheila Holtgreive “Daisy” with 20 correct answers.

Individual Non-Member Category: Dean Turnbloom with 19 correct answers.

Other members doing very well included Denny Dobry “Kirby”, Ron Lies “Chips”, and Elinor Hickey “Misty” who all tied for second place in the Individual Member Category.

Tomorrow’s Weekly Quiz 3 will be posted by noon (Pacific) and will consist of 10 questions, but they are diabolique!

Congratulations to our successful Quiz Masters!  Onward to the Monthly and Quarterly Quizzes!

Weekly Quiz Masters for 16-21 September 2013

The First Weekly Quiz was successfully completed by the following participants:

Team Category: Margie Deck, JHWS “Gwen” and Sheila Holtgreive, JHWS “Daisy”. These two intrepid quizzers and members of the successful Team Category of the First JHWS Annual Canonical Treasure Hunt, had all 20 correct answers.

Individual Member Category: First to answer within hours of the quiz posting was James O’Leary, JHWS “Pippin” who scored 19 correct answers in a three-way tie with Denny Dobry, JHWS “Kirby” and Elinor Hickey, JHWS “Misty” also with 19 correct answers each.

Individual Non-Member Category: Dean Turnbloom who answered all 20 questions correctly.

These Weekly Quiz Masters may now challenge for the Monthly Quiz Master designation in their quest for the Annual Quiz Master title.

Interesting that the participants with 19 correct answers missed the same question, #11 having to do with the circa 1683 ancestral home of the Roylotts, Stoke-Moran. The answers are posted at the bottom of the original quiz notice below and may be downloaded by clicking on the icon.

Next week’s Quiz will be posted by 12 noon (Pacific) on Monday, 23 September 2013 and will end on 12 noon (Pacific) Saturday, 28 September 2013. Please join in as the more challengers we have the greater the fun!

Good luck to all and congratulations to this week’s Quiz Masters.

Treasure Hunt Winners!

The 2013 First Annual John H Watson Society Canonical Treasure Hunt was a success!

Many of our members (and many non-members) have reported that it was “fiendishly difficult,” “maddeningly hard,” and “just plain tough.” There were 100 questions, linked, requiring the solver to work from question 1 through to question 100 in order to arrive at the identification of the Ultimate Treasure. The devisers of the Treasure Hunt believe that it may be the most difficult quiz ever set in Watsonian and Sherlockian history.

Participants were given one month to complete the Treasure Hunt and the winners were determined by the number of correct answers, the date and time of submission of the answers, and the correct solution to the final Ultimate Treasure.

Were are delighted to announce that we have winners! There are members and non-members who persevered and found their way to the solution.

The 2013 winners of the First Annual John H Watson Canonical Treasure Hunt  are:

Open Team Competition:

The team consisting of Society Members from Seattle’s Sound of the Baskervilles (SOB’s) who scored a perfect 100 on the very difficult questions. Their team consists of:

Stephen Adkins, JHWS “Alfie”
Margie Deck, JHWS “Gwen”
David Haugen
Sheila Holtgrieve, JHWS “Daisy”
Allen Nelson, JHWS “tbn”
Margaret Nelson,  JHWS “tbn”

Congratulations to Team SOB’s on their scholarship, teamwork and their perseverance. They report having logged hundreds of hours during the month-long Treasure Hunt. They also competed entirely for the fun and joy and specifically requested that they be awarded no prize. Instead, the Society has awarded two-year Charter Memberships to the team non-members as a token of its respect and admiration and to joyfully obtain four new members who are dynamite quizzers. The team will defend in the 2014 Second Annual John H Watson Canonical Treasure Hunt scheduled for June 2014.

Open Individual Competition:

Working entirely alone and finally completing the Treasure Hunt just as his wife was preparing to pack his bags for him after twenty-three days of Treasure Hunt obsession, and as his grandchildren were constantly questioning “What in the world is wrong with Pop?” our intrepid Society member Denny Dobry, JHWS “Kirby,” who resides in Reading, Pennsylvania and is the  Current Gasogene of the White Rose Irregulars of York, took Open Individual honours with a score of  98 correct answers. Denny even managed to find numerous alternative, accurate answers to questions that Buttons overlooked. Congratulations to “Kirby” on a job well done. He wins the Treasure Hunt Prize, a British First Edition of The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes donated by an anonymous member.

The Open Student Competition attracted no entries. We would encourage all Society members to “adopt a student for the Canon” and encourage participation in next year’s Treasure Hunt.

The Open Team International Competition has been extended to 9 September 2013 and a winner will be announced if the correct entry is received.

The answers to the 2013 Treasure Hunt will be added to the Treasure Hunt page on 9 September 2013 when the competition is officially closed.

Congratulations to all who participated, those who tried, those who persevered, and those who achieved success. Next year, the Treasure Hunt will be revised and a focus on teams as well as inter-Canonical organization competition will be strengthened. And . . . It will be even more difficult!

Please watch for announcements of the 2014 Second Annual John H Watson Canonical Treasure Hunt over the months ahead. Also, please watch in the next month for an announcement of a major new event being sponsored by our Society that will involve the entire Watsonian/Sherlockian/Holmesian world!  This is going to be VERY exciting!

And now . . . after a long labour . . . perhaps Buttons shall have a steak and kidney pie and a pint of best bitter . . . or two . . . .