"Arts" is the eleventh episode of the A Series of QI. It first aired on BBC Four on 13 November 2003, and was broadcast on BBC Two a week later. This episode came after "Aviation" and preceded "Advent"; it marked the first appearance of Richard E. Grant.


Numbers in brackets mark appearances - e.g. "(2)" means "(second appearance)".

  1. Richard E. Grant (1): 12 points
  2. Linda Smith (2): 5 points
  3. Bill Bailey (3): -2 points
  4. Alan Davies (11): -18 points


This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia's article "QI (A series)" (view authors here or here). Smallwikipedialogo
  • Pigeons do not like going to the movies, because they see the world ten times faster than humans. To them, a film is a slow slide show.
  • It was once believed that a pigeon's arse could be used to suck out the poison from an adder's bite, even though the last death from an adder bite was in 1977 and more people die from peanuts every year than from adder bites every century. Pigeons are the only birds that can suck. Pliny the Elder had a different solution involving tearing open a live swallow.
  • The ant[1] has the largest brain in comparison to its body size; if a human were have a have a head of the same ratio, they would have be three times bigger. There are 8,000 species of ant.
  • Soldier ants were used in Ancient India as stitches after operations.
  • In Thailand, red ants are poured into open wounds, and they secrete an acid which acts as a pain killer and an antiseptic.
  • A greasy butcher, a hog snout and Gene Pitney are all kinds of apple.
  • Apples and a game played with headless goats both originated from Kazakhstan. It never says in the Bible, what the fruit eaten in the Garden of Eden was, but it is just assumed to be an apple.
  • Both Ulysses S. Grant and John Prescott were charged for speeding. Lord Prescott was banned from driving for 21 days in 2001 after being caught doing more than 100 mph on the M1, where he was fined £200. He had previously acquired nine penalty points on his driving licence. His best excuse that he came up with was that he didn't want his constituents to catch cold waiting for him. "Three Buggy" Grant received a speeding ticket on his horse and buggy in Washington, D.C. in 1869 and was fined £20. He had to persuade the officer that he was guilty. They both also won unusual prizes. Grant won a prize for taming a pony in a circus. The Prescott family came second a competition searching for, "The most typical family in Britain", in Brighton in 1951, but he should have won because the winning family was discovered to be distantly related to the organiser of the competition.

General IgnoranceEdit

This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia's article "QI (A series)" (view authors here or here). Smallwikipedialogo
  • The largest living thing on the Earth is the honey mushroom, of which the largest specimen covers 2,200 acres and is between 2 and 8 thousand years old. It was originally thought to grow in separate clusters but is now considered one huge organism connected under the soil.[2][3]
  • The first man to claim that the Earth revolves around the Sun was Aristarchus, born in 310 BCE, and who also worked the relative distances of the Earth, Sun and Moon, and believed the universe to be, rather than a celestial sphere, a universe of almost infinite size.[4]
  • The African animal which kills more humans than any other is the hippopotamus, other than other humans or mosquitoes, despite being vegetarian. A hippo's skin weighs a ton, is an inch-and-a-half thick and is bulletproof. The whole hippo weighs 4 tons. A hippopotamus breath is so bad, they use it as part of their weaponry. George Washington had hippopotamus false teeth.
  • The telephone was invented by Antonio Meucci,[5] who perfected it by 1871 but couldn't afford the patent. When it was being assessed, it fell into the hands of Bell who decided to patent it in his own name. Meucci took Bell to court, but died before the judgement was given.


  1. Human
  2. Blue whale
  3. Giant redwood
  4. Copernicus
  5. Alexander Graham Bell