Monday, March 22, 2010

Tuesday Trivia Tie-in #5

Welcome to Tuesday Trivia Tie-in. Thank you for joining me today. Each Tuesday readers are invited to share a blog post about one of their treasures and a bit of related trivia.

This feature was inspired by a great deal I got on an entire rack of ties at an indoor flea market. Added to the ties I already had, I realized I had quite a collection of neat ties.

This week, I will also joining:

2nd Time Around

at A Picture Is Worth 1,000 Words

Where Diane invites readers to share their secondhand finds. Stop by there when you are done here, and see all the fun treasures people are finding.

My tie this week is a Christian Giorgiou Design. It is untitled, but I call it my Question Mark Tie. Perhaps you can see why:

I couldn't find a lot of information about Christian Giorgiou, so if anyone knows anything please feel free to let me know. All I turned up was a bunch of golf themed ties.

This tie had me fascinated though. The question marks, what could they mean? Who is asking the question, and what do they want to know? I am always asking questions myself, always wondering, always looking for just a few more facts.

For example, I knew that the mark on the tie was a question mark, but did you know that it is also know as an interrogation point, a query, or an erotome?

Officially defined as the punctuation mark that signifies a full stop at the end of a sentence, it can also be used mid-sentence to mark an interrogative phrase. ie: What does that mean? and why would we use it that way? This usage is becoming more and more rare.

There is some mixed data regarding the history of the question mark.

Some believe it originated from the punctus interrogativus from the 700's which was kind of like a lightning bolt:

Others believe that it evolved from the latin questio which was abreviated as an uppercase "Q" over a lowercase "o".

While that explanation seems the most logical, it is supported by the least amount of documentation.

Whatever the history, the mark that we use now in English, to end a question, is sometimes used in other languages a little differently, for example, in Spanish, one may write "¿QuĂ© hora es?" ; While in French it is considered proper to add a space before the question mark: "Que voulez-vous boire ?".

The mark itself appears a little different as well. In Armenian it looks like this and appears above the last vowel in the question word.

While in Persian and some of the other languages where they write from right to left instead of from left to right, it looks just like ours only mirrored.

Finally, and I am including this only because I find it fascinating, in 1962, Martin K. Speckter, an American advertising executive, decided that his ads would look better if there were a single mark that indicated both a question and an exclamation. He therefore held a contest, both for the design of the mark, and the name, thus the Interrogbang was born. (Interro for the Latin question and Bang, the printers slang for an exclamation point.)

In 1966 the interrobang was included in some styles of typeface sold to printers. In 1968 it was available on some Remington Typewriters, and during the 1970's some Smith Corona Typewriters has it as an available replacement option.

Although it was something of a fad and never quite caught on, it can still be found today in some versions of Wingdings 2.

And for the real trivia buffs, an inverted and reversed Interobang, suitable for beginning Spanish sentences, is called a Gnaborretni (interrobang backwards).

An interrobang would be useful to say "How much did you pay for that tie?!?

This tie, like many of my ties, came from a thrift store for less than what it costs to have a tie dry cleaned these days.

Ok, Now it's your turn. Enter your link below. Make sure you link to your post and not just your main blog.

Be sure and join me each Tuesday for Tuesday Trivia Tie-in, where readers are invited to share trivia and show off their treasures.

For a complete list of the rules, click here.


  1. 2nd attempt at a comment! Love the tie and the Question Mark is so very cool!!!

  2. That's a lot of cool info on the question mark.A very questionable tie. Peace, Stephanie

  3. Hi Troy...

    Hehe...I'm still laughing at Stephanie's comment..."a very questionable tie"! Too cute! Well my friend, the first thing that came to my mind when seeing your tie...was the "Riddler" from Batman and Robin! Didn't they always show question marks when the Riddler came on the scene? I don't know...I equated the two together for some reason.

    I must do have a fabulous tie collection! Now...I have a question for you...have you ever wore that tie? Just curious! I found the trivia on the question mark, etc...very interesting! I learned alot of new stuff! I guess you can teach an old dog new tricks! Hehe! Thanks so much for sharing another one of your handsome ties with us and the interesting facts about question marks! And...thank you so much for hosting Trivia Tuesday...I enjoyed participating today!!!

    Have a fabulous day, Troy!
    Chari @Happy To Design

  4. Ha!

    I haven't worn that tie yet, because I just got it recently, and it hasn't been dry cleaned yet. But I do enjoy wearing ties, and wear a different one every chance I get.

    This is one that I would, and will wear, once it gets dry cleaned.

    Thanks for asking!