Following on from yesterday’s set of lists here are some challenges involving things that begin with the letter M (including countries, capital cities and chemical elements) or come 13th numerically (such as the 13th Pope and the 13th President of the USA). In each case you can test yourself first to see how many you can name. The answers appear at the end of this piece.
Challenge: Items beginning with M
Countries: there are 19 countries whose usual English names begin with M. [Hint: 7 in Africa, 5 in Europe, 4 in Asia, 1 in the Americas (including Caribbean island nations), 2 in Oceania.] 2021 Update: Since this piece was original published, one of the countries in Europe has changed its name, by adding a point of the compass at the start, so there are now 18 countries that begin with M, 4 of them in Europe.
[Note: this challenge once appeared as a jackpot round in the BBC1 quiz show “Who Dares Wins”. The couple who made it to the jackpot round could have won £50k for naming 15 countries beginning with M. Unfortunately, they gave Montserrat as one of their answers. Montserrat is a British Overseas Territory, not a country in its own right, so they won no money on that round.]
Capital cities: there are 20 (including administrative capitals).
Chemical Elements: there are 7 elements that begin with M; 6 of them have symbols that begin with M.
UK #1 Chart Acts: Over 60 acts beginning with M have reached #1 in the UK charts. Well done if you can name 25 of them.
Songs beginning with M that have reached #1 in the UK Chart: 70 songs beginning with M have made it to #1 in the UK. Well done if you can name 30 of them.
Challenge: 13th in a list
Can you name the following?
The 13th Pope (174AD to 189AD).
The 13th President of the USA (1850-1853).
The winner of Superbowl XIII (1979).
The host country and winner of the 13th FIFA World Cup (1986).
Answers: Items beginning with M
Countries (18): Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia, Moldova, Monaco, Mongolia, Montenegro, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar. 2021 Update: Macdeonia, which was formerly in this list, is now called North Macedonia.
Capital cities (20): Madrid, Majuro, Malabo, Malé, Managua, Manama, Manila, Maputo, Maseru, Mbabane , Melekeok, Mexico City, Minsk, Mogadishu, Monaco, Monrovia, Montevideo, Moroni, Moscow, Muscat.
[For the record, capital cities with country name in brackets: Madrid (Spain), Majuro (Marshall Islands), Malabo (Equatorial Guinea), Malé (Maldives), Managua (Nicaragua), Manama (Bahrain), Manila (Philippines), Maputo (Mozambique), Maseru (Lesotho), Mbabane (Administrative capital of Swaziland, or Eswatini as it is now called), Melekeok (Official capital of Palau), Mexico City (Mexico), Minsk (Belarus), Mogadishu (Somalia), Monaco (Monaco), Monrovia (Liberia), Montevideo (Uruguay), Moroni (Comoros), Moscow (Russia), Muscat (Oman).]
Chemical elements by name (7): magnesium (Mg), manganese (Mn), meitnerium (Mt), mendelevium (Md), mercury (Hg), molybdenum (Mo), moscovium (Mc).
UK #1 Chart Acts: Macklemore & Ryan, Madison Avenue, Madness, Madonna, Magic!, Major Lazer, Manchester United Football Squad, Manfred Mann, Manhattan Transfer, Manic Street Preachers, Mantovani & His Orchestra, Marc Almond with Gene Pitney, Marcels, Maria McKee, Mariah Carey, Mario Winans, Mark Morrison, Mark Ronson, Marmalade, Maroon 5 featuring Wiz Khalifa, MARRS, Martin Garrix, Martine McCutcheon, Marvin Gaye, Marvin Rainwater, Mary Hopkin, Mash, Matt Cardle, Matthews’ Southern Comfort, McFly, Meat Loaf, Meck featuring Leo Sayer, Meghan Trainor, Mel & Kim, Melanie B featuring Missy Elliott, Melanie C, Melanie C featuring Lisa Left Eye Lopes, Men At Work, Michael Andrews featuring Gary Jules, Michael Holliday, Michael Jackson, Michelle, Middle Of The Road, Midge Ure, Mika, Mike Posner, Mike Sarne with Wendy Richard, Miley Cyrus, Military Wives, Mint Royale, Modjo, Monkees, Moody Blues, Move, Mr Blobby, Mr Oizo, Mr Probz, Mud, Mungo Jerry, Musical Youth, My Chemical Romance.
Songs beginning with M that have reached #1 in the UK Chart: “Mack The Knife” / “Mad World” / “Maggie May” / “Magic Moments” / “Make It Easy On Yourself” / “Make Luv” / “Make Me Smile (Come Up And See Me)” / “Making Your Mind Up” / “Mama Do (Uh Oh Uh Oh)” / “Mama Weer All Crazee Now” / “Mambo Italiano” / “Mambo No 5” / “Mambo No5 (A Little Bit Of…)” / “Mamma Mia” / “The Man” / “Man From Laramie” / “Mandy” / “Maneater” / “Maria” / “Marvin Gaye” / “Mary’s Boy Child” / “Massachusetts” / “Masses Against The Classes, The “ / “Matchstalk Men & Matchstalk Cats & Dogs” / “Me and My Broken Heart” / “Meet Me Halfway” / “Memories Are Made Of This” / “Men In Black” / “Mercy” / “Merry Christmas Everyone” / “Merry Xmas Everybody” / “Message In A Bottle” / “Metal Guru” / “Mi Chico Latino” / “Michael” / “Michelle” / “Mighty Quinn” / “Millennium” / “Millennium Prayer” / “The Minute You’re Gone” / “Mirrors” / “Mississippi” / “Mistletoe & Wine” / “Mmm Bop” / “The Model” / “Money on My Mind” / “The Monster” / “Mony Mony” / “Moon River” / “More Than A Woman” / “Most Beautiful Girl In The World” / “Mouldy Old Dough” / “Moulin Rouge” / “Move Closer” / “Mr Blobby” / “Mr Tambourine Man” / “Mr Vain” / “Ms Grace” / “Mull Of Kintyre” / “Music” / “My Camera Never Lies” / “My Ding-A-Ling” / “My Heart Will Go On” / “My Life Would Suck Without You” / “My Love” / “My Old Man’s A Dustman” / “My Place” / “My Son My Son” / “My Sweet Lord” / “Mysterious Girl”.
Answers: 13th in a list
13th Pope: Eleutherius (174AD to 189AD).
13th President of the USA: Millard Fillmore (1850-1853).
The winner of Superbowl XIII: Pittsburgh Steelers (1979).
The 13th FIFA World Cup (1986): hosted by Mexico, won by Argentina.