Among all the buildings, flags, clocks, statues, and architectural ornaments you find around the city, two animals prevail: eagles and lions. Both animals are all around us as we walk through the city and into its historic buildings. But you may be so accustomed to seeing them that it doesn’t register where you encountered which.
March came in like a lion all over the country, so I thought it would be appropriate to focus this month’s Boston quiz on lions.
The Boston Lion Hunt
The March quiz is designed to be a lion hunt, which means picking the right location for each lion. No, I did not include the heraldic lion on top of the Old State House because it’s too obvious. I wanted the quiz to be harder than that, but also not too difficult.
This granite lion’s head, for example, was no doubt reclaimed from a building being razed. As architectural sculpture, it decorates a front garden on Beacon Street near Charlesgate, but it’s too obscure for the quiz.
Boston’s lions don’t exactly hide—many are too big for that—but they can be hard to spot. Not only do you have to look up, but also down and close up. So, these beasts will test your powers of observation as well as memory.
Cold to Sizzling
Unlike the February quiz, the Boston Lion Hunt is multiple choice. Pick the right location for each lion and you get two points. The wrong choice earns you a goose egg—and not of the golden variety. I provided some hints before you get to the photos, so you can toggle back and forth, if needed. You have five choices for each image and I did my best to provide reasonable options, so think carefully.
Here’s the scoring:
- 1 – 6 = Cold
- 8 – 10 = Lukewarm
- 12 – 14 = Hotter
- 16 – 20 = Sizzling
As before, photos have been cropped to eliminate surroundings that might provide a clue. Put on your thinking cap and jump into the Boston lion hunt.
These big guys no longer live at this location — and I remember when they lived there. In fact, that building doesn’t exist any more. Never fear, though; both lions moved to another, snazzier spot not very far away. Do you recognize them from their new home?
This snarling beast and his equally ferocious brother guard the door to their building. Fortunately, though, they have to stay where they are and can’t jump down to bother pedestrians.
I always tell you to look up, and that’s the only way you will see this lion and his brothers. Even though these beasts aren’t big compared to some of the others in this quiz, there are a lot of them — all carved out of wood and gilded.
Although they live amidst pond weeds and water lilies, these four lions never get a good drink of water. But they do keep watch on the four directions and never get sleeeeeepy….
THE GREEN LION
Lions typically don’t turn green as they age but this lion and his seven brothers have been around for a while. Maybe I should call them the verdigris lions because they are the only green pride in town — that I know of. But I find new lions almost everywhere I look.
THREE STERN LIONS
These three might be grim because they didn’t get the best location. They have a good view but most people look in the other direction. Even so, they do catch the winter sun and that’s cause for good cheer. Cats do love their sunlight.
These two brothers guard the doors but they’re mostly for show. If the doors don’t open for you, don’t blame them. When you don’t belong, you don’t belong.
This winged lion works hard at his job, holding up that flagpole and clutching his shield all day and night. Most cats aren’t that diligent about actual work but he never leaves his post. The building changes its function sometimes but the lion abides.
Once upon a time, hundreds of passers-by trusted this lion to keep them on schedule. That’s not so important these days — and he’s come down a bit in the world. But he still does his job.
This lion and his brother do what male lions do in the savannah: lie in the sun and watch the world go by. Walking past them is a step in the right direction so don’t be afraid. They’re big but they don’t bite.
THE LION HUNT’S ANSWERS
How did you do? As before, I’ll report the results in my end-of-month roundup of posts on The Next Phase Blog.
Dear Ms. Kaplan,
I love your website. I have learned so much just by taking the lion quiz (on which I’m sure I did not do well). Thanks for creating the site.