"Cat's Eyes" is the fifth episode of the C Series of QI and the 29th episode overall. It was first broadcast on BBC Two on 28 October 2005. It featured no new panellists. The episode was preceded by "Cheating" and followed by "Cockneys".


Numbers in brackets mark appearances - e.g. "(2)" means "(second appearance)".

  1. Sean Lock (7): 12 points
  2. Rich Hall (11): 3 points
  3. Alan Davies (29): -18 points
  4. Jo Brand (9): -28 points


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  • Women have been shown to be able to "smell fear". Animals can smell the fear of each other but not of another species.
  • "Cats Eyes" Cunningham shot down the very first plane by night in 1940 because he had airborne radar.[1] Alan initially mistook Cunningham for the inventor of the cat's eyes, Percy Shaw.
  • Marco Polo first heard the curious sounds that were created in the desert by sand dunes, which he claimed were the spirits of the desert. There are more molecules in a glass of water than there are grains of sand in the entire world.
  • Pliny the Elder and others believed that a giraffe was the result of a cross between a camel and a leopard. This creature was originally called a "camelopard".
  • Since 1982, a centenarian in the UK receives a 'telemessage' from the Queen, but only on application from the Anniversaries' Secretary at Buckingham Palace.
  • There is no word for a Roman who was in charge of 100 men.[2] Strictly speaking, centurions were in charge of 83 men, although it was normally between 60 and 80.
  • It is suggested that Nero played the kithara while Rome burned down.[3] It was impossible for him to have played the violin as it didn't exist until the 14th century. He blamed the Christians for the Great Fire of Rome.
  • Elephants used to be caught by Ethiopian elephant catchers who would capture one, disable it and use it as a breeding animal. Methods used to frighten elephants included setting fire to oil-covered pigs and setting them at the elephants.
  • No animals are mentioned that have short memories.[4]

General IgnoranceEdit

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  • A Myoclonic jerk is a sensation of falling during the prestages of sleep used in early stages of evolution to prevent gravity from removing the creature from trees.
  • The largest lake entirely within Canada is the Great Bear Lake.[5] None of the Great Lakes are entirely in Canada, so none of them count. The deepest lake in Canada is Lake Manitou, which has an island inside it, and in that island there is a lake. That makes it the largest lake that's in an island that's in a lake in the world.
  • Botts' dots is the name for "cat's eyes" in California. They were created by Dr. Elbert Botts. Unlike Percy Shaw, he received no money because he was working for the California Department of Transportation at the time.


  1. Carrots
  2. Centurion
  3. Fiddled while Rome burned
  4. Goldfish
  5. Who cares?
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