Series D - December
- Christmas is celebrated on 25 December because it is the birthday of the Roman sun god Mithras. Some of things claimed about Mithras include him being a saviour sent to Earth to live a mortal whom it was possible for sinners to be reborn into immortal life. He died for our sins but came back the following Sunday. He was born of a virgin on 25 December in a manger (or perhaps a cave), attended by shepherds and became known as the light of the world. He had 12 disciples whom he shared a last meal before dying. His devotees symbolically consume the flesh and blood of him. Because he was a sun god he was worshipped on Sundays. He is often depicted with a halo around his head. Worshippers of Mithras gave each other gifts on 25 December. The leader of the religion was called a "Papa", and their HQ was Vatican Hill in Rome. There are lots of religions that have similar stories to the Christian Christmas story. (Forfeit: Jesus' Birthday)
- After Christmas lunch, the Queen watches herself giving her own Christmas Speech on television. (Forfeit: Goes for a walk)
- The thing that suffers the most at the office Christmas party is the photocopier. People really do photocopy their backsides. According to Canon Engineer Geoff Bush, people sometimes end up with broken glass in their posterior. Things found in photocopiers include sleeping cats, snakes, kitchen knifes, sausage rolls, condoms, stockings, vibrators and a cheque for £6,000.
- Champagne was invented by the English in the 16th century. The English had the only technology that could make bottles that did not explode. They also added sugar and molasses to make wine fizzy. In the 19th century, the French invented the myth about Dom Pérignon accidentally inventing champagne. However, Pérignon did invent the wire cage that goes over the cork and also did the blending. (Forfeit: The French)
- A true Catalonian Christmas nativity scene contains a figure called the "Caganer", who squats and defecates, normally in a corner. Famous people who have been the Caganer include George W. Bush and David Beckham. Their version of the Christmas log translates into English as a 'shit log'. Once Catalonian phrase translates as "Eat well, shit hard."
- In Norfolk, turkeys got little leather boots for Christmas, when they were driven to London and the New World.
- Note: Because it is Christmas, all the questions have a sacred theme.
- Saints who come from Ireland include St. Conleth, St. Brigid of Kildare and St. Kevin of Glendalough. St. Brigid's great miracle was that she threw a cape which grew in size, and built a convent on the land it covered. She could also turn used bath water into beer.
- The pointing fingers in "The Creation of Adam" were painted by an unknown Papal restorer because the original fingers fell off. (Forfeit: Michelangelo)
- A man called "Father Christmas" died in Dedham, Essex on 30 May 1564. Christmas is a popular name in Essex and other parts of Southern England, with 1,000 people in UK phone books called Christmas in Essex, Surry, Cambridgeshire, London and Sussex. It was normal to call old people "Father" if you did not their first name, so some people were called "Father Christmas". The earliest known person called Christmas was one Roger Christmas in the year 1200. (Forfeit: He's not dead)
This was the 50th episode of QI made.
- Friday 15th December 2006
- BBC Four
- 30 minutes
Cast & crew
|Stephen Fry||Host / Presenter|
|Alan Davies||Regular Panellist|
|Dara O Briain||Guest|
|John Mitchinson||Question Writer|
|Piers Fletcher||Question Writer|
|Lorraine Heggessey||Executive Producer|
|Katie Taylor||Executive Producer|
|Jonathan Paul Green||Production Designer|