The Inspector General and the District Recorder send all the Princes and their families their sincere wishes for a safe time during these unprecedented and ever changing times.........

A half-century of these weekly missives then – how times flies.  The lockdown is expected to ease at the end of the month and life will begin to improve as we are allowed to move around more freely.  No masonic meetings still for a while but at least we can mix with family and friends physically instead of just by Zoom or Skype.  Many of us have had the first injection, the second won’t be far behind and the medical researchers seem very pleased with the level of protection we should all be acquiring.


I am somewhat bored with seeing repeated pictures on television of someone getting their vaccination; not only are we well aware by now what such a scene looks like, there are some people who find such pictures very distressing.  We do need as many as possible to get their jabs of course, to ensure we reach a safe level of ‘herd immunity’ for the future.  Just imagine the brouhaha if one of our candidates should fall ill just after joining.  Let us pray for a safe resumption before too much longer.


Here are my answers to week 49’s questions:

  1. The difference in circumferences resulting from an increased radius of an object depends only upon the increase in radius and is completely independent of the original size.  So, an increase of 6 inches in the radius of the earth would result in exactly the same increased circumference were the radius of an orange expanded by the same 6 inches – about 37.7 inches in each case.

  2. Because the Earth is an oblate spheroid, the summit of Mount Chimborazo in Ecuador is actually some 6,800 feet further from the centre of the Earth than the summit of Everest.  The tallest mountain, from its “base” under the sea to its peak is actually Mauna Kea on Hawaii.

  3. Trygvie Halvdan Lie resigned from the Secretary-General post during his second term and Dag Hammarskjold was killed in an aircraft crash in the Congo after 8 years in post.  The next 6 SGs all served out two 5-year terms. 

  4. The first pyramid was built in about 2780BC at Saqqara in Egypt by Imhotep as a memorial/shrine to King Djoser.

  5. Depending on your source there were either 166 or 168 female pilots who delivered aircraft from factories to the RAF during the Second World War.

  6. Tottenham Hotspur are the only team outside the Football League to have won the FA Cup since the League was formed in 1888.  They joined the League in 1908.  The FA Cup is older than the League and 7 teams won the Cup before 1888.

  7. Robin Dunbar is a social anthropologist who believes that a person can only really have a maximum of about 150 meaningful contacts with whom a relationship can be maintained.  I suspect many of us would claim more in Buckinghamshire Freemasonry.

  8. Like most substances, water contracts and gets denser as it cools.  However, water is densest at about 4°C and when cooled below that temperature it starts to expand again.  Water which is at 4°C is therefore denser than water which is both above or below its own temperature and therefore sinks - deep pools therefore very frequently don’t freeze in the UK.

  9. George Harrison had died 2 months before “My Sweet Lord” reached number 1 and his arrival at the top was the first time in the history of number one singles charts that one posthumous artist (George) had replaced another (“More Than a Woman” by Aaliyah was also posthumous).

  10. Mr. John Hatfield, who died in 1770 aged one hundred and two, was a soldier in the reign of William and Mary (so before 1702).  He was tried and condemned by a court-martial for falling asleep on his duty, upon Windsor Terrace.  He absolutely denied the charge against him, and solemnly declared that he heard St. Paul's clock strike thirteen, the truth of which was doubted, because of the great distance.  But whilst he was under sentence of death, an affidavit was made by several persons that the clock did actually strike thirteen instead of twelve, whereupon he received His Majesty's pardon.


Here are this week’s posers:

  1. Who was the first person to travel round the world in less than 80 days?

  2. What is the longest word which can be made from the letters of the roman numerals?

  3. How was Gideon told to select his troops?

  4. What is wrong, botanically, with the common name for Bertholletia Excelsa?

  5. What is the link between a number 78 bus and Hawker Hunter number XF442?

  6. What is the half-life of the most common radioactive element in many foods?

  7. Where were the Elgin Marbles stored during the Second World War?

  8. Which station was the furthest north on the Metropolitan line until 1935?

  9. Who, during the early 19th century, served as President of four separate countries?

  10. What is the difference between the flash point and the autoignition point of a fluid?


Happy Researching.

Maintain the mantra - Hands, Face, Space, Stay Safe and Stay Cheerful.  Shouldn’t be too long before we can meet up again even if it is only in small numbers.

Peter Harborne 33°


Inspector General


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