Paul Dundon’s Weblog


A little cheese and a little whine

Pot Calling Kettle


UKTV Gold had a good laugh at the expense of the UK population when they asked them whether a series of figures was real or fictional. The most alarming outcome was that about a quarter of those polled thought Winston Churchill was fictional while half of those polled thought Sherlock Holmes was real. But take a look at the list of fictional characters most often thought to be real according to the poll:


King Arthur

Sherlock Holmes

Robin Hood

Eleanor Rigby

Mona Lisa

Dick Turpin


The Three Musketeers

Lady Godiva

Robinson Crusoe


Yes, well, quite. Holmes, Biggles, Crusoe, Ms Rigby and the Musketeers are indubitably fictional, and there is little evidence that Robin Hood is anything other than invention. But Mona Lisa (if we take that name to refer to the subject of the painting) was real, although not called Mona Lisa (to put it another way, Da Vinci didn’t invent her); Dick Turpin was also real (he was executed in York in 1739) as was Lady Godiva (she’s in the Domesday book if you want to look her up). Most of what we believe about Arthur is fiction but there is some evidence of a real person to whom some of his accomplishments can be credited.


Overall, I don’t know which is more distressing – that 65% of the population said Dick Turpin was fictional, or that the people with the money to run and publish the poll thought that this was the right answer.


Filed under: Film + TV, Humour

One Response

  1. Jim says:

    Hehe… I LMAO… serves them right, though I doubt many people will have picked up on it.

    Just a small point, wasn’t it the ‘Doomsday Book?’ LOL

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My Bookshelf

The Golden Bough
The Value of Nothing
The Fire
A Wolf at the Table
Devil Bones

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