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Quiz about Professor Moriarty
Quiz about Professor Moriarty

Professor Moriarty Trivia Quiz


Professor Moriarty is widely known as the "arch-enemy" of Sherlock Holmes in Conan Doyle's stories. How true is this, and what do you know of this villain?

A multiple-choice quiz by Charlesw321. Estimated time: 4 mins.
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Author
Charlesw321
Time
4 mins
Type
Multiple Choice
Quiz #
352,165
Updated
Dec 03 21
# Qns
10
Difficulty
Average
Avg Score
7 / 10
Plays
360
Awards
Top 20% Quiz
Last 3 plays: magcargot (10/10), Guest 71 (9/10), Guest 46 (4/10).
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Question 1 of 10
1. What was Moriarty's first name? Hint


Question 2 of 10
2. In how many of Conan Doyle's tales (56 short stories and 4 novels) does Moriarty appear, or is he referred to? Hint


Question 3 of 10
3. Of which discipline was Moriarty a professor? Hint


Question 4 of 10
4. According to Conan Doyle, how many brothers did Moriarty have? Hint


Question 5 of 10
5. Who is Moriarty's main assistant in his criminal activities? Hint


Question 6 of 10
6. A particular weapon, made to Moriarty's order, is mentioned by Conan Doyle as being used by his main assistant to commit murder. What was it? Hint


Question 7 of 10
7. In "The Valley of Fear", during an effort to convince Inspector MacDonald of Moriarty's involvement in crime, Holmes mentions Moriarty's official annual salary which "can be ascertained in several trustworthy books of reference". How much is it? Hint


Question 8 of 10
8. How did Holmes describe Professor Moriarty? Hint


Question 9 of 10
9. At the age of twenty-one Moriarty wrote a treatise which won him European fame. What was its subject? Hint


Question 10 of 10
10. Moriarty is eventually defeated and killed. How did he ostensibly die? Hint



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Most Recent Scores
Jul 07 2024 : magcargot: 10/10
Jun 04 2024 : Guest 71: 9/10
May 21 2024 : Guest 46: 4/10

Score Distribution

quiz
Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. What was Moriarty's first name?

Answer: James

During a conversation with Watson recounted in "The Adventure of the Empty House", Holmes refers to "Professor James Moriarty". This is the only occasion on which his first name is mentioned.
2. In how many of Conan Doyle's tales (56 short stories and 4 novels) does Moriarty appear, or is he referred to?

Answer: 7

Moriarty appears in person in only one story, "The Final Problem", although his actions are described by Holmes in "The Adventure of the Empty House". He plays an important but unseen part in "The Valley of Fear", and is mentioned in four other tales ("The Adventure of the Missing Three-Quarter", "The Adventure of the Illustrious Client", "The Adventure of the Norwood Builder" and "His Last Bow"). Conan Doyle perpetrated an anachronism, for in "The Final Problem" Watson claims never to have heard of Moriarty before, whereas "The Valley of Fear" was set earlier, although published later.
3. Of which discipline was Moriarty a professor?

Answer: Mathematics

In "The Final Problem" Moriarty is described as having held a chair in mathematics at "one of our smaller universities".
4. According to Conan Doyle, how many brothers did Moriarty have?

Answer: The number is not certain

We know that Moriarty has at least one brother; in "The Valley of Fear" we are told that his elder brother is "a station master in the west of England." In "The Final Problem", however, Watson refers to "the recent letters in which Colonel James Moriarty defends the memory of his brother".

It has been suggested that Colonel Moriarty retired from the Army and became a station master, or that "stationmaster" might mean "master of a military station". Both seem unlikely. The fact that the Professor and his warlike brother share a first name is strange, and both Kim Newman (in "Professor Moriarty: The Hound of the D'Urbervilles") and W.S. Baring Gould ("The Annotated Sherlock Holmes") suggest that there were three brothers (the Professor, the Colonel and the station master) who all shared the name James.
5. Who is Moriarty's main assistant in his criminal activities?

Answer: Colonel Moran

Colonel Sebastian Moran is mentioned in "The Valley of Fear", where Holmes refers to him as Moriarty's "chief of staff", and makes an appearance in "The Adventure of the Empty House", where he commits a murder and then attempts to shoot Holmes. He is later briefly referred to in "The Illustrious Client" and "His Last Bow". He was born into a good family, attended Eton School and the University of Oxford and then entered the British Army in India. He gained a reputation for big-game hunting and personal bravery, but somehow "went wrong" (in view of his later activities, possibly through gambling) and resigned from the Army. On returning to London, he was given employment by Moriarty until the break-up of his criminal organization. Holmes attributed Moran's criminal tendencies to a hereditary defect, which Watson considered "rather fanciful".

Spring-heeled Jack is a criminal in eighteenth-century English folklore notable for his athletic prowess, particularly in jumping. Captain Morstan and Bartholomew Sholto both appear in the Sherlockian canon, the former as the deceased father of Watson's first wife Mary Morstan and the latter as a corpse; both in "The Sign of the Four".
6. A particular weapon, made to Moriarty's order, is mentioned by Conan Doyle as being used by his main assistant to commit murder. What was it?

Answer: An air-rifle which fires soft-nosed revolver bullets

In "The Final Problem" Holmes visited Watson and surprised him by closing all the window shutters. He admitted to being afraid "of air-guns". Later, in "The Adventure of the Empty House", Colonel Moran murdered a fellow-gambler with an air-gun which fired soft-nosed revolver bullets. This is an ingenious weapon, as the finding of the bullet at the scene of a crime would indicate that the shot had been fired at the short range over which a revolver is accurate, rather than at a longer range. He later uses the same gun to attempt to kill Holmes but succeeds only in ruining a wax bust which is designed to deceive the assassin. The weapon is described as an "air-gun", but was probably rifled for accuracy.

Holmes later relates that he knew of this weapon, constructed to Moriarty's order by "a blind German mechanic" called von Herder. It is interesting that in the "Adventure of the Mazarin Stone" a very similar scenario takes place; a wax dummy is placed in the window of Holmes's room to tempt a murderer.

None of the other three weapons is mentioned in the canon.
7. In "The Valley of Fear", during an effort to convince Inspector MacDonald of Moriarty's involvement in crime, Holmes mentions Moriarty's official annual salary which "can be ascertained in several trustworthy books of reference". How much is it?

Answer: Seven hundred pounds

Holmes states that Moriarty's salary is 700 per annum (equivalent to about 70,000 now). He goes on to say the Moriarty pays Colonel Moran 6,000 (over 600,000) a year, thus demonstrating that Moriarty must have a large source of undeclared income. For comparison, at that time a skilled tradesman would be earning about a hundred pounds a year.
8. How did Holmes describe Professor Moriarty?

Answer: The Napoleon of crime

"He is the Napoleon of crime, Watson. He is the organizer of half that is evil and of nearly all that is undetected in this great city" (from "The Final Problem").

The other titles are of my own invention, but note that the Italian dictator Benito Mussolini would have been less than ten years old at the time that the story was placed, so, unless his fame flourished in his earliest years, his claim is improbable.
9. At the age of twenty-one Moriarty wrote a treatise which won him European fame. What was its subject?

Answer: The binomial theorem

Holmes refers to the young Moriarty's treatise as enjoying a European vogue and winning the writer his university chair. Versions of the theorem date back over two thousand years, however, and several authors have pointed out that little or no research was possible by the late nineteenth century.

In his engaging pastiche "The Seven-Per-Cent Solution" (admittedly outside of the original canon), Nicholas Meyer depicts Moriarty as a mild-mannered schoolteacher of mathematics who is persecuted by Holmes for personal reasons and has him denying authorship of any such work, with the words "Certainly not. Who has anything new to say about the binomial theorem at this late date? At any rate, I am certainly not the man to know." Conan Doyle also has Moriarty as the author of "The Dynamics of an Asteroid", a work which "ascends to such rarefied heights of pure mathematics that it is said that there was no man in the scientific press capable of criticizing it".
10. Moriarty is eventually defeated and killed. How did he ostensibly die?

Answer: He fell into a waterfall

In "The Final Problem", Holmes engaged Moriarty in hand-to-hand combat at the Reichenbach Falls in the Bernese Oberland in Switzerland. There were no witnesses to the event and neither was later found, so it was presumed that they had both fallen to their deaths.
Source: Author Charlesw321

This quiz was reviewed by FunTrivia editor looney_tunes before going online.
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