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Poetry Rivals 2016

Taking poetry from the page to the stage!

Poetry Quiz

Date Posted: 03-10-2014 10:33:54

By Ana Sampson, author of the poetry anthologies I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud, Tyger Tyger Burning Bright, Poems to Learn by Heart and Green and Pleasant Land.


1. Which much-loved poem was inspired by the disastrous ‘Jameson Raid’ that contributed to the outbreak of the Boer War in 1899?


A: The Battle-Hymn of the Republic by Julia Ward Howe

B: If– by Rudyard Kipling

C: In Time of ‘The Breaking of Nations’ by Thomas Hardy

D: For the Fallen by Laurence Binyon


2.  From which poem are these famous lines taken: ‘Their’s not to reason why, / Their’s but to do and die’?


A: Elegy Written in a Country Church Yard by Thomas Gray

B: O Captain! My Captain! by Walt Whitman

C: Vitaï Lampada by Henry Newbolt

D: The Charge of the Light Brigade by Alfred, Lord Tennyson


3.  Which of these poets turned down the position of Laureate?


A: Thomas Gray

B: William Wordsworth

C: Alfred Lord Tennyson

D: John Masefield


4.  Which poet was so scatterbrained that his wife Frances occasionally had to redirect him by telegram when he misjudged public transport and arrived at the wrong town?


A: Robert Louis Stevenson

B: G. K. Chesterton

C: T. S. Eliot

D: Dylan Thomas


5.  Which poet was tried for sedition after a spat with a soldier?


A: W. B. Yeats

B: Christopher Marlowe

C: William Blake

D: Ben Jonson


6.  Which month links the General Prologue to Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, T. S. Eliot’s The Waste Land and Robert Browning’s Home-Thoughts, from Abroad?


A: May

B: April

C: November

D: August


7. Which poem includes these famous lines: ‘One may lead a horse to water, / Twenty cannot make him drink’?


A: Goblin Market by Christina Rossetti

B: The Song of Hiawatha by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

C: The Deserted Village by Oliver Goldsmith

D: Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening by Robert Frost


8.  Which poet did W. B. Yeats describe as ‘the most handsome young man in England’?


A: Siegfried Sassoon

B: Wilfred Owen

C: Rupert Brooke

D: Edward Thomas


9.  To which poet is Shelley’s Adonais a tribute?


A: George Gordon, Lord Byron

B: Leigh Hunt

C: Charles Lamb

D: John Keats


10.  Which poet was described as ‘mad, bad and dangerous to know’?


A: Percy Bysshe Shelley

B: Christopher Marlowe

C: George Gordon, Lord Byron

D: William Blake


Compete Ana's quiz and send it to and you could win all four copies of Ana's poetry anthologies!

Winner announced on our blog Friday 17th October 2014.

To find out more please visit

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