Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Take this quiz to enter the drawing for a free book


To celebrate this blog's second anniversary, I've decided to give away one copy of my novel, A Thing Done, to someone who is  brave enough to take this little quiz.  It can be the winner's choice of a Kindle edition, a Nook edition, or a paperback (unless you live somewhere other than the US, in which case I don't want to fork over the money to ship a paperback, so it will have to be Kindle or Nook).  If you want it sent to somebody else as a holiday gift, no problem.  I will let this contest run until December 10 before choosing a winner.

If you're not sure of all the answers, try anyway.  You've got nothing to lose.  And since some answers may be debatable, or the questions a bit sneaky, winners will be determined by use of a complex algorithm.  (No, I have no idea what I mean by that either, but you can get away with just about anything if you use a complex algorithm.  Just ask Amazon.  Or Goodreads.)  Comments count.  Creativity counts.  Flattery counts.   Becoming a blog follower counts.  Give me your answers in the Comments section, or send them to me privately if you prefer.  (And try not to look at any previous comments containing the answers!  Honor system applies.)

Ready?  Okay.  Think hard about the 13th century, about Florence, about Dante.  Once you've projected yourself back to then and there, you're all set to proceed.  It's short - only three questions.  Good luck! 

Question the First:  

I'm going to give you two lists, each describing an individual in late 13th century Florence.  Then I'm going to give you a list of political parties.  See if you can figure out which political party each individual belongs to.

If you are the First Individual:
  • You think the Pope is a really great guy.
  • You're a fan of Count Guido Guerra, who's the cousin of Guido Novello (who you don't like very much).
  • You think Emperor Frederick II was the Antichrist.
  • Your fortress has square crenellations.
  • You fight under a banner that sports a fleur-de-lys.
  • You're from Florence, or from Lucca.
  • When you look back on the 1216 fracas that was the subject of A Thing Done, your sympathies are with Buondelmonte and the Donati.
  • You really respect Charles of Anjou.  Or at least you'd like to keep him on your side.
  • You'd love to exile your opponents and tear down their towers, houses, and businesses.

If you are the Second Individual:
  • You think the Emperor is a really great guy.  When there is an emperor, at least.
  • You're a fan of Count Guido Novello, who's the cousin of Guido Guerra (who you don't like very much).
  • You think Emperor Frederick II was the Wonder of the World.
  • Your fortress has swallowtail crenellations.
  • You fight under a banner that has an eagle on it (even though it looks like a scrawny chicken about to be plucked)
  • You're from Pisa, Siena, or Arezzo.
  • When you look back on the 1216 fracas mentioned above, your sympathies lie with Oddo Arrigo dei Fifanti, the Lamberti, and the Amidei.
  • You hold Farinata degli Uberti in high regard. 
  • You'd love to exile your opponents and tear down their towers, houses, and businesses.

If you are the Third Individual:  
  • You'd rather the Pope didn't put your city under interdict, and you wish the Emperor would just occupy himself elsewhere and stop appointing vicars.
  • You don't really care much about any of the Conti Guidi.
  • You suspect Fred II was a heretic, but he was also pretty cool in a lot of ways.
  • You don't have a fortress.  You have a perfectly good house, thank you.
  • You prefer not to fight.  Somebody's got to keep the shops open.
  • You're Florentine.  You're not nobility, and you're not a mere laborer, either.  You might even have a surname, or be about to acquire one.
  • When you look back on 1216, you think, "What were they thinking?!?"
  • You respect anybody who can hold his own against the magnates.
  • You wish you could exile all the big shots at once, rent out their towers and houses, and take over their businesses. 

And here are the political parties (only three will apply, but I like to provide lots of choices):
  1. Primo Popolo
  2. Whigs
  3. The Silly Party
  4. Guelfs
  5. Tories
  6. Christian Democrats
  7. Libertarians
  8. Ghibellines
  9. The Tea Party
  10. Communists
Assign one party to each of the three individuals.  Easy-peasy, eh?  Try the next one:

Question the Second:

All you Dante scholars, here's your chance.  Dante's Commedia is divided into three parts:  the Inferno, the Purgatorio, and the Paradiso.   Tell me to which of those three regions of the afterlife Dante assigned each of the following: 
  1. Brunetto Latini, philosopher, civil servant, and Dante's mentor
  2. Alexander the Great, world conqueror
  3. Ciacco, notorious glutton
  4. Paolo and Francesca, famous lovers
  5. Mosca, whose comment provided the title for A Thing Done
  6. Jason of the Argonauts, adventurer and fleece fancier
  7. Pope Celestine V, who abdicated
  8. Brutus, Roman patriot who killed Julius Caesar
  9. Helen of Troy, problematic beauty
  10. Ulysses, extremely clever Greek guy
  11. Filippo Argenti, Dante's neighbor
  12. Frederick II, either Antichrist or Wonder of the World
Helen, Celestine, Alexander, Frederick
 So far, so good.  Now, for our last question of the day, an easy one:

Question the Third:

I'm going to list eleven women who were important in Dante's life in one way or another.  Then I will list several possible roles for these women.  Match each name with the role she played in Dante's life.  (It is possible for an answer to be used more than once.  In fact, it's downright necessary.)

Here are the women, in alphabetical order:
  1. Antonia
  2. Beatrice
  3. Bella
  4. Fioretta
  5. Gemma
  6. Gentucca
  7. Lapa
  8. Lisetta
  9. Lucia
  10. Tana
  11. Violetta
And here are the possible roles:
  • Muse and inspiration
  • Mysterious woman mentioned in Dante's writing (and scholars would just love to know more about her)
  • Stepmother
  • Mother
  • Half-sister
  • Wife
  • Daughter
  • Favorite saint

That's all there is to it.  Have fun, send me your answers, and we'll see who takes the prize.  Good luck!

Images in this post are in the public domain, except for the photo of the bust of Helen of Troy, which is licensed to Yair Haklai, and the photo with the swallowtail crenellations, which is licensed to Chfono.  Both are under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license, Wikimedia Commons.


Monique Liddle said...

1st Person is a Guelfs.
2nd Person is a Ghibellines.
3rd Person is a Primo Popolo.

All 12 were in Dante's Inferno.
Brunetto Latini - Inferno
Alexander the Great - Inferno
Ciacco - Inferno
Mosca - Inferno
Jason of the Argonauts - Inferno
Pope Celestine V - Inferno
Brutus - Inferno
Helen of Troy - Inferno
Ulysses - Inferno
Filippo Argenti - Inferno
Frederick II - Inferno

Antonia - daughter
Beatrice - Muse & inspiration
Bella - Mother
Fioretta - mysterious woman in writings
Gemma - Wife
Gentucca - Mysterious woman in Dante's writings
Lapa - Wife
Lisetta - Mysterious woman in Dante's writings
Lucia - Favorite saint
Tana - daughter
Violetta - Mysterious woman in Dante's writings

I hope I win. I learned a lot doing this quiz, but it also was a lot of work. I just found your website while looking for information on how to do historical fiction research!!! I look forward to reading more of your past posts.


Monique Liddle said...

Also, Happy Anniversary!!! Keep Going!

Tinney Heath said...

Monique - wow, that was quick! Thanks for your kind words. I obviously didn't think this through very well, since now everybody else can see your answers. Oh, well... we'll let it run its course anyway, and just see what happens. Welcome to the blog!

Monique Liddle said...

I guess you could look at what other blogs do for contests because lots of bloggers have them.

The other thing I was wondering is if you have thought to add a section where people can sign up for your blog by email. I rarely check my blogger reader, so I would have to keep your blog open all the time to catch when you have a new post. Most blogger blogs do both "Join this site" and "Follow by email" so that we can get your new posts in our email accts. Just a thought! :)