Christmas Trivia Quiz - Comments, answers & winners

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On December 24, 25 and 26 we were running our Big ChessVibes Christmas 2009 Trivia Quiz. Today we give you all answers to the thirty questions. And we have three winners!

As we expected, the trivia quiz wasn't easy. In a lot of cases, the answers couldn't be found online, or only after spending quite some time surfing the internet. The winning team at René Olthof's 50th birthday party scored about 70%, but because our readers had more than three days to collect the answers, it's no surprise that some of them did better than that. According to the jury the winners are:

Prize giving

NIC Yearbook NIC Magazine ICC
The first prize, a 1-year subscription to New in Chess Yearbook, was won by Joseph Dellaposta from Australia, who scored 92.6%. The second prize: 1-year subscription to New in Chess Magazine, was won by Christian Sánchez from Argentina, who scored 91.8% The third prize, a 1-year subscription to Internet Chess Club (ICC), was won by Jurgen Looijestijn from The Netherlands, who scored 89.4%.

Congratulations to the winners!

Comments from participants

    "The quiz is challenging and time consuming."

    "Thank you and Rene Olthof for a fun contest. I am afraid I don't know much about music albums."

    "I really enjoyed the quiz, with some answers being very hard to find (and some even impossible for me, seeing that I left some blanks...). Hope you will continue this quiz for the following years to come!"

    "Great job on this one - I liked the olympiad logo question especially. Devilishly hard until you find a research strategy. Keep up the good work in 2010!"

    "What a fine quiz bringing me hours of joy. Searching the internet and looking up things in my chess library broadened my knowledge of the chess world and trivia. However you totally spoiled my wife's Christmas as I was only busy solving the quiz and not paying attention to her or our kids."

    "It was a wonderful christmas and enjoyed a great deal with such spicy tough questions."

    The Big Christmas 2009 Trivia Quiz - All questions & answers

    1. In this quiz we call Wilhelm Steinitz the first World Champion, and Viswanathan Anand the sixteenth. We don't count the FIDE World Champions Khalifman, Ponomariov and Kasimdzhanov. 1A Which number has Garry Kasparov? - Number 13 1B How many World Champions are still alive? - Seven 1C True or not true: every deceased World Champion won the last game he played? - Not true

    2. Of all chess players, Paul Keres beat the most World Champions. How many did he beat? - Nine - from Capablanca to Fischer

    3. Where were they born? - Answers:
    Pal BenköAmiens (FRA)
    Robert FischerChicago (USA)
    Emanuel LaskerBarlinek (POL)
    Alisa MaricNew York (USA)
    Cecil PurdyPort Said (EGY)
    Yasser SeirawanDamascus (SYR)
    Wilhelm SteinitzPrague (CZE)
    Jan TimmanAmsterdam (NED)
    William WatsonBagdad (IRQ)
    Natalia ZhukovaDresden (GER)

    4. This questions is about five important chess cities: Dortmund, Hastings, Linares, Reggio Emilia and Beverwijk/Wijk aan Zee. 4A The five winners of the first editions of these tournaments are mentioned, but which winner belongs to which tournament? Philip Bakker - Beverwijk/Wijk aan Zee, Jaan Eslon - Linares, Otto Marthaler - Reggio Emilia, Fritz Sämisch - Dortmund, Frederick Yates - Hastings. 4B Hastings is traditionally held in the winter, but in 1895, 1919, 1922 and 1995 there was a summer edition. Name three of the four winners. The four names are Pillsbury (1895), Capablanca (1919), Alekhine (1922), Atalik (1995)

    True or not true? 4C Boris Spassky won in Dortmund at least once - False 4D Boris Spassky won in Hastings at least once - True 4E Boris Spassky won in Linares at least once - True 4F Boris Spassky won in Reggio Emilia at least once - False 4G Boris Spassky won in Beverwijk/Wijk aan Zee at least once - True

    5. Vladimir Kramnik played a total of eight matches in different World Championship cycles. 5A Name his opponents. 1. Yudasin (Wijk aan Zee) 4.5-2.5 2. Kamsky (New York) 1.5-4.5 3. Gelfand (Sanghi Nagar) 3.5-4.5 4. Shirov (Cazorla) 3.5-5.5 5. Kasparov (London) 8.5-6.5 6. Leko (Brissago) 7-7 7. Topalov (Elista) 6-6 8. Anand (Bonn) 4.5-6.5

    5B If we count only the classical games (not rapid or blitz), what would be his score? (How many matches did he win, if only classical games would count, how many did he lose and how many ended in a tie?) Won 2 Tie 2 Lost 4

    6. Of which Chess Olympiads are the following logos?
    6A - Dubai 1986 6B - Dubrovnik 1950
    6C - Havana 1966 6D - Manila 1992
    6E - Moscow 1994 6F - Thessaloniki 1984 / 1988
    6G - Yerevan 1996 6H - Buenos Aires 1978

    7. A question about the FIDE rating list, invented by Hungarian Professor Arpad Elo. 7A Six players have occupied the number one spot. Name them all. 1: Fischer (1970) 2: Karpov (1976) 3: Kasparov (1984) 4: Kramnik (1996) ex aequo 5: Topalov (2006) 6: Anand (2007)

    (In the meantime we have a 7th player, Magnus Carlsen!)

    7B Which five players have had, at least once, a published rating of over 2800? Kasparov, Kramnik, Anand, Topalov, Carlsen 7C Which two Dutch grandmasters were ever in the top 10? Timman and Van Wely

    8. What do the following artists have in common?
    [[{"type":"media","view_mode":"media_large","fid":"199","attributes":{"class":"media-image","typeof":"foaf:Image","height":"188","width":"250","style":""}}]] [[{"type":"media","view_mode":"media_large","fid":"200","attributes":{"class":"media-image","typeof":"foaf:Image","height":"188","width":"250","style":""}}]]
    Muddy Waters Howlin' Wolf
    [[{"type":"media","view_mode":"media_large","fid":"201","attributes":{"class":"media-image","typeof":"foaf:Image","height":"188","width":"250","style":""}}]] [[{"type":"media","view_mode":"media_large","fid":"202","attributes":{"class":"media-image","typeof":"foaf:Image","height":"188","width":"250","style":""}}]]
    Chuck Berry Bo Diddley

    Chess Records / The Chess Box

    9A Two of the sixteen World Champions never played at an Olympiad. Name them. Steinitz and Lasker 9B Reigning World Champions have lost only 9 games out of a total of 23 appearances ever by a reigning World Champion at an Olympiad. Four World Champions lost two - name all four. Alekhine, Euwe, Botvinnik and Kasparov
    . 10A Openings and variations are often named after countries, cities or other geographical terms. One of the following, however, isn't. Which? Bled, Cheliabinsk, Donau, Kecskemet, Kemeri, Saragossa, Siesta, Steenwijk, Wilkes-Barre. Siesta - that's a sanatorium in Budapest 10B Another favourite source for nomenclature are the names of chess players. Which of the following names is not a chess player? Bogoljubow, Petroff, Kalashnikov, Makogonov, Panov, Smyslov, Sveshnikov, Taimanov, Urusoff, Veresov. Kalashnikov - that's a weapon 10C Some names are not well known. Which of the following variations or systems is not named after a chess player? Brentano, Canal, Cordel, Cozio, Damiano, Dilworth, Döry, Knorre, Muzio, Pin. Pin - Bb4 pins Nc3

    11. The World Junior Chess Championship has been organized since 1951. 11A Of the following ten players, five won the title once, and five never. Which of these names won the title? Aronian, Bielicki, Carlsen, Fischer, Hübner, Ivkov, Kaplan, Leko, Spassky, Timman. Aronian, Bielicki, Ivkov, Kaplan and Spassky 11B Four of the sixteen World Champions also won the World Junior title. Which four? Boris Spassky (Antwerp 1955) Anatoly Karpov (Stockholm 1969) Garry Kasparov (Dortmund 1980) Viswanathan Anand (Baguio 1987)

    12. Where do they live? - Answers:
    Viswanathan AnandCollado Mediano
    Levon AronianBerlin
    Fabiano CaruanaBudapest
    Vladimir KramnikParis
    Joel LautierMoscow
    Yasser SeirawanAmsterdam
    Alexei ShirovRiga
    Nigel ShortAthens
    Veselin TopalovSalamanca

    13. Thirteen games in the match between Anand and Kasparov in 1995 ended in a draw. How often was Kasparov the one who offered a draw? 13A zero 13B two 13C eleven 13D all thirteen

    13E There are only three players who played more than one classical game against Kasparov and have a plus score. Name all three players. Kramnik, Lautier and Gulko (Some participants mentioned Konstantin Lerner, but as far as we know he only played one game against Kasparov.)

    14 Three photos. One of them is a former World Champ, the other a former FIDE President and the third a former World Junior Champ. Name these three famous players.
    14A - Nona Gaprindashvili 14B - Fridrik Olafsson 14C - Oscar Panno

    15 Four album covers. Name the albums and artists!
    15A - Peter Hammill - Fools Mate 15B- B.Andersson, B.Ulvaeus, T.Rice -
    Chess, the musical
    15C - Van der Graaf Generator - Pawn Hearts 15D - The Enid - Six Pieces

    16 IM Christoph Wisnewski wrote a monograph about 1...Nc6, the Nimzovich Opening, for Everyman. Last year a book about opening traps was published by the same publisher, this time written by Christoph Scheerer. ‘Previously Wisnewski’, according to Everyman. This question is about players whose name was changed significantly during their chess career. Connect the old names to the correct new names. - Answers:
    KardinaalVan Laatum

    17. A question about the World Senior Chess Championship. 17A From what age are you allowed to participate in this event? 60 17B Which player won the title three times? Janis Klovans 17C Of the following names, six players won the title at least once, and six didn't. Which players won the title? Yuri Averbakh, Jacob Murey, Ewfim Geller, Jusefs Petkevich, Larry Kaufman, Lajos Portisch, Viktor Korchnoi, Vassily Smyslov, Bent Larsen, Boris Spassky, Henrique Mecking, Mark Taimanov. - Ewfim Geller, Jusefs Petkevich, Larry Kaufman, Viktor Korchnoi, Vassily Smyslov and Mark Taimanov

    18.There are many couples of two chess players in the chess world. Create the correct couples! - Answers:

    Suat AtalikEkaterina Polovnikova
    Juan Manuel Bellon LopezPia Cramling
    Pascal CharbonneauIrina Krush
    Glenn FlearChristine Leroy
    Laurent FressinetAlmira Skripchenko
    Daniel FridmanAnna Zatonskih
    Robert FontaineKateryna Lahno
    Jonathan GrantKetevan Arakhamia
    Alexander GrischukNatalia Zhukova
    Boris GulkoAnna Akhsharumova
    Gilberto HernandezClaudia Amura
    Lars Bo HansenEvgenia Peicheva
    Alexander IvanovEsther Epstein
    Sergey KarjakinKaterina Dolzhikova
    Yona KosashviliSofia Polgar
    Vadim MalakhatkoAnna Zozulia
    Mohamed al-ModiahkiZhu Chen
    Sergei MovsesianPetra Krupkova
    John NunnPetra Fink
    Georgy OrlovElena Akhmilovskaya
    Yasser SeirawanYvette Nagel
    Bartosz SockoMonika Bobrowska
    Alex YermolinskyCamilla Baginskaite

    19. For a long time Peter Svidler thought the Marshall Gambit of the Ruy Lopez to be dubious, but eventually he started playing the move 8...d5 himself. Who inspired him? 19A Michael Adams 19B John Nunn 19C Jimi Hendrix, whose full name was James Marshall Hendrix 19D Billy Joel

    20A Who are the two men in the left picture? 20B Which chess player is chosen for the sculpture on the right?
    Left: with sigaret - Emanuel Lasker; with cigar - Berthold Lasker. Right: Max Euwe

    Rider Hotel, Cambridge Springs

    21. Many of you have probably heard of the Interzonal tournament that was held in 1973 in Petropolis, but do you also know in which country that city is located? 21A Combine the following 'chess cities' with the correct countries in 2009. - Answers:
    Abazzia Croatia
    Barmen Germany
    Breslau Poland
    Bugojno Bosnia & Herzegovina
    Cambridge Springs United States
    Merano Italy
    Petropolis Brazil
    Semmering Austria

    The Luzhin DefenceA question about the above cities. True or not true? 21B Abazzia - here the famous theme tournament was held in 1912, where the Evans Gambit was the obligatory opening. False - it was the King's Gambit 21C Barmen - this tournament (1905) had an official tournament song. True 21D Breslau - birth place of Adolf Anderssen. True 21E Bugojno - the main sponsor of these five tournaments was a stitching-machine factory. False - it was a typewriter factory 21F Cambridge Springs - the Rider Hotel, where the famous 1904 tournament took place, burnt down completely during the Bay of Pigs incident in 1961. False - the hotel burnt down alright, however not in 1961 but in 1931 21G Merano - the location of Nabokov's The Luzhin Defence True 21H Petropolis - Stefan Zweig, author of Die Schachnovelle, died here in 1942. True 21I Semmering - the 1937 World Championship match between Vera Menchik and Sonja Graf took place here, in the Panhans Hotel. True

    Marcel Duchamp22. Of all chess players, Marcel Duchamp is by far the most famous for activities outside the chess world. Besides playing chess, the following persons have another career, in art, science, politics or a different kind of sports. Make the correct connections! - Answers:
    Utut Adianto member of parliament
    Simen Agdestein soccer player
    Nona Gaprindashvili chairman national Olympic committee
    Alexander Grischuk poker player
    Robert Hübner papyrologist
    Bozidar Ivanovic minister
    Cenek Kottnauer water polo player
    Kenneth Rogoff economist at the IMF
    Mark Taimanov pianist
    Sir George Thomas badminton & tennis player
    Milan Vidmar electro technician

    Grave Alekhine23. Where were they buried? - Answers:
    Alexander Alekhine Paris
    Marcel Duchamp Rouen
    Max Euwe Amsterdam
    Bobby Fischer Selfoss
    Emanuel Lasker New York
    Geza Maroczy Budapest
    Paul Morphy New Orleans
    Aaron Nimzovich Copenhagen
    Rudolf Spielmann Solna
    Wilhelm Steinitz New York

    fischer24. In January 2009, at 15 years, 7 months and 1 day Anish Giri became the youngest Grandmaster in the world. Well, on that day he scored his 3rd GM norm; he received the title officially a bit later. 24A Who was the youngest GM before Giri, and who became the youngest GM after him? Before: Hou Yifan. After: Ray Robson. 24B Traditionally the list of youngest GMs in history starts with Bobby Fischer, who became a GM in 1958, when he was 15 years, 6 months and 1 day old. However, this list of youngest grandmasters ever (so not the youngest GM at a certain moment in the world, but youngest ever) contains ten names, and one of them is Fischer. Give this list of ten names in the correct order. 1950 - 1: David Bronstein (26) 1952 - 2: Tigran Petrosian (22?) 1955 - 3: Boris Spassky (18) 1958 - 4: Robert Fischer (15-6-1) 1991 - 5: Judit Polgar (15-4-28) 1994 - 6: Peter Leko (14-4-22) 1997 - 7: Etienne Bacrot (14-2-0) 1997 - 8: Ruslan Ponomariov (14-0-17) 1999 - 9: Bu Xiangzhi (13-10-13) 2002 - 10: Sergey Karjakin (12-7-0)

    kiev 197825. The grandmaster tournament Kiev 1978 was won by Alexander Beliavsky, who, despite losses against the number 2 and 3, won the tournament with a 2-point margin. However, the tournament became famous because of something else: the tournament book. What was so special about this book? Shortly before the tournament Lev Alburt, member of the Burevestnik-Europacup team, fled to the West in West-Germany. He became a persona non grata in the USSR and therefore his name can nowhere be found in the tournament book.

    player26. We know the player in the picture as a strong grandmaster. In Iceland, however, he's mainly known as the founder and president of the only Icelandic bank that didn't collapse in 2008. What's his name (and the name of the bank)? Margeir Petursson

    ton timman27. In the picture we see Ton Timman playing against his more famous brother Jan. Below you'll find duos; eight of these duos are siblings, eight are not. Which eight duos are siblings?
    Espen/Simen Agdestein John/Paul Littlewood
    Georgy/Viacheslav Agzamov Turkan/Zeinab Mamedjarova
    Daniel/Rafael Fridman Alisa/Mirjana Maric
    Krum/Kiril Georgiev Predrag/Nebojsa Nikolic
    Ilya/Dmitry Gurevich Boris/Ruslan Ponomariov
    Mikhail/Vladimir Gurevich Nigel/Philip Short
    Csaba/Jozsef Horvath Igor/Alexander Zaitsev
    Edward/Emanuel Lasker Andrei/Sergei Zhigalko

    28. In this video you can see one of the most successful table tennis players today (red shirt). But what is his name? 28A Bu Xiangzhi 28B Ni Hua 28C Wang Hao 28D Wang Yue

    olympiad29. There are not many players who represented three different federations at Olympiads. From the following list of players, pick the two players who do not belong to this small group: Alexander Beliavsky, Erich Eliskases, Boris Gelfand, Mikhail Gurevich, Viktor Korchnoi, Zdenko Kozul, Ivan Sokolov.
    Alexander Beliavsky (URS-UKR-SLO) Erich Eliskases (AUT-GER-ARG) Boris Gelfand (URS-BLR-ISR) Mikhail Gurevich (BEL-TUR) Viktor Kortchnoi (URS-SUI) Zdenko Kozul (YUG-BIH-CRO) Ivan Sokolov (YUG-BIH-NED)

    journalism30. Chess journalism - which names belong to which media? - Answers:
    Leonard Barden Columnist The Guardian
    Frederic Friedel Editor Chessbase (English)
    Leontxo Garcia Columnist El País
    Dirk Jan ten Geuzendam Editor New in Chess Magazine
    Mark Gluhovsky Editor 64
    Dirk Poldauf Editor Schach
    John Saunders Editor British Chess Magazine
    Jennifer Shahade Editor Chess Life Online
    Yuri Vasiliev Photographer Sport-Express
    Nadja Woisin Editor Chessbase (Spanish)

Peter Doggers

Peter Doggers joined a chess club a month before turning 15 and still plays for it. He used to be an active tournament player and holds two IM norms.

Peter has a Master of Arts degree in Dutch Language & Literature. He briefly worked at New in Chess, then as a Dutch teacher and then in a project for improving safety and security in Amsterdam schools.

Between 2007 and 2013 Peter was running ChessVibes, a major source for chess news and videos acquired by in October 2013.

As our Director News & Events, Peter writes many of our news reports. In the summer of 2022, The Guardian’s Leonard Barden described him as “widely regarded as the world’s best chess journalist.”

In October, Peter's first book The Chess Revolution will be published!

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Phone: 1 (800) 318-2827
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