Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Your Questions Answered?

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Your Questions Answered?

Article excerpt

Last week we asked how many bricks there were in the Great Wall of China. The straight answer is: nobody knows exactly.

The wall is around 4,000 miles long and 30ft high, but is not made entirely of brick. Also built in and added to over the centuries by various emperors, is a mixture of hardened earth, stone and brick.

The basic wall was begun in 3BC and is said to contain enough stone to build another eight-foot high wall which would circle the globe.

Incidentally, although you can see the wall from space, it's impossible to see it from the Moon. It may be long, but it's only 20ft wide, making it too narrow to be seen by the naked eye from such a great distance.

WE also asked why New York is known as the Big Apple.

Regular visitor to the States, Michael Robertson, from Gateshead, wrote in to say that native New Yorkers NEVER refer to their beloved city as the Big Apple. He reckons the phrase was coined as late as the 1970s when businesses were crashing and tourism was at an all-time low.

He writes: "In response to the crisis, the authorities launched an expensive publicity drive to boost the city's image. At the time, New York state was America's biggest apple producer and New York apples were famous across the country.

"Those in charge of the campaign used the slogan New York City: The Big Apple to sell the place to middle America."

The Big Apple was apparently a bar on 42nd Street in New York which was used by jazz musicians in the 1920s.

When touring the States the musicians would bump into each other and arrange to meet up again in the Big Apple. Because of this, the name became synonymous with New York City.

Other people believe the Big Apple was a dance which first appeared in New York in the mid-1930s.

Some believe the nickname is derived from the city's large Spanish-speaking population. …

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