A Literary Quiz for Christmas

If you fancy yourself an expert on seasonal stories and poems and want some festive fun, try this Christmas quiz.

1. Identify the books which contain the following references to Christmas:

a. “I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. I will live in the Past, the Present, and the Future. The Spirits of all Three shall strive within me. I will not shut out the lessons that they teach!”

b. “Christmas won’t be Christmas without any presents,” grumbled Jo, lying on the rug.

c. “All the Christmases roll down toward the two-tongued sea, like a cold and headlong moon bundling down the sky that was our street; and they stop at the rim of the ice-edged, fish-freezing waves, and I plunge my hands in the snow and bring out whatever I can find.”

2. Who wrote the following seasonal poems?

a. Frost at Midnight
b. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
c. In the Bleak Midwinter

3. The following lines are from Christmas, by which poet?

The holly in the windy hedge
And round the Manor House the yew
Will soon be stripped to deck the ledge,
The altar, font and arch and pew,
So that the villagers can say
‘The church looks nice’ on Christmas Day’.

4. At the start of which children’s novel is it always winter but never Christmas?

5. Who solved the mystery of why a valuable gem was lodged in the crop of a Christmas goose?

6. Leontes, Hermione and Perdita are characters in which of Shakespeare’s plays?

7. What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store. What if Christmas…perhaps…means a little bit more!
Who has this change of heart?

8. Whose garden is being described?

So it was always Winter there, and the North Wind, and the Hail, and the Frost, and the Snow danced about through the trees.

9. What is the name of Carol Ann Duffy’s poem about the temporary ceasefire in the first winter of World War One?

10. The Long Winter is the sixth title in a series of books by which American writer?


1. a – A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
b – Little Woman by Louisa May Alcott
c – A Child’s Christmas in Wales by Dylan Thomas
2. a – Samuel Taylor Coleridge
b – Robert Frost
c – Christina Rossetti
3. Sir John Betjeman
4. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
5. Sherlock Holmes in The Blue Carbuncle
6. The Winter’s Tale
7. The Grinch in How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr Seuss
8. The Selfish Giant in the story by Oscar Wilde
9. The Christmas Truce
10. Laura Ingalls Wilder

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I have been working for Oxford Open Learning since 2010 and love helping my students with their English and History courses. As a teacher and personal tutor, I have taught pupils from all around the world, aged from three to adult. I am often to be found with my head in a book and sometimes I have four or five on the go at the same time. I love learning about History and Art and am passionate about literature.

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