Saved by an inch

1. In 1912, a former US president was shot twice in the chest just before a speech and survived just because his speaking notes were in his breast pocket. He even went on to make his speech. Which president?

2. In one of the most famous escapes in cinematic history, whose likeness was replaced by a poster of Raquel Welch from the film One Million Years BC ?

3. While on tour in 1959, Waylon Jennings gave up his seat on a flight to another musician and instead went on the tour bus. To whom did he surrender his seat?

4. Which other renowned actor was supposed to visit Sharon Tate’s home the night she was killed by the Manson gang, but bailed out at the very last minute for another engagement?

5. Who famously escaped from Agra in 1666 by bribing prison guards and having Niraji Raoji dress up as him, though legend has him escaping in large fruit and sweet baskets?

6. Which bestselling book and well-received film described Henri Charriere’s incarceration and subsequent escape from Devil’s Island, a penal colony in French Guiana?

7. Which famous actress had a cold and was running high temperature and just missed being on a flight with her husband in 1958. The plane, named after her, crashed and killed everyone on board?

8. Who escaped from 38/2 Elgin Road in the wee hours of January 17, 1941 dressed as a Pathan?

9. Which British PM became a celebrity after escaping from a prison camp in 1899 while he was reporting on the Boer war?

10. Fiction. In which work does the protagonist take the place of his friend, the Abbe Faria in the burial sack and escape when the sack is thrown into the sea?


1. Theodore Roosevelt.

2. Rita Hayworth, in The Shawshank Redemption .

3. JP Richardson, the Big Bopper. The plane crashed and killed Buddy Holly, the Big Bopper and Ritchie Valens — ‘the day the music died’.

4. Steve McQueen, he was also on the list of people targeted by Charles Manson.

5. Shivaji, Aurangzeb had him under house arrest.

6. Papillon , the 1973 film starred Steve MQueen and Dustin Hoffman.

7. Elizabeth Taylor. The plane was named ‘The Liz’ by her husband Mike Todd.

8. Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, on his way to the Soviet Union.

9. Winston Churchill.

10. Edmund Dantes in The Count of Monte Cristo.

Joy Bhattacharjya is a quizmaster; Twitter: @joybhattacharj