Monday, July 21, 2014

Quiz with Chamara Sumanapala. Part 06: Dr. RL Spittel

Dr. Richard Lionel Spittel was an acclaimed Ceylonese physician and author from the Burgher Community the country. He was one of the foremost experts on the Veddhas of Sri Lanka. Born on December 9, 1881, he died on September 3, 1969.
Dr. RL Spittel (Image from:

1. Dr. RL Spittel was an excellent surgeon and also traveled far and wide through the wilderness of Ceylon. Therefore, he was given an epithet by which he is widely known. What is this famous epithet?

2. Dr Spittel published his first book in 1915. It was a medical book named “A Basis of Surgical Ward Work.” In 1924, he published his first book on Ceylon. He dedicated the book to his father, Dr. Frederick George Spittel. What was his first book on Ceylon?

3. Dr. Spittel’s books won critical acclaim both within Ceylon and overseas. They were based on his knowledge about the history of the island, his travels in the jungle areas and the interactions with the Veddha people. One of the books written in 1951 and published in London was acclaimed by the reviewer on BBC Home Service who said, “The whole story has been beautifully written. It is the best jungle book I've read since the 'Jungle Book' itself.” What was this book?

4. In 1966, the last book of Dr Spittel published before his death came out in Colombo. It could also be said that this was his first purely historical novel. It was co-authored by his daughter Christine. Based on the last days of the Portuguese rule in the island of Ceylon, what is this book?

5. Some years after his death, an international school was started in the house of Dr. Spittel in Colombo 7. The school however, retained the name of the house. What was the name of the house owned by Dr RL Spittel?

Answers to Quiz 05

1. San Diego
2. 1899
3. Chuichi Nagumo
4. Kazuo Sakamaki
5. USS Arizona

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