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Just Ask! Posers and puzzles.

What are the roots of the term hunting tartan and does it really have any relation to hunting? S. Burns, Kirkcaldy.

The history of tartan is a very complicated subject. Many conventions regarding the wearing of tartan have more recent origins than may be assumed and the term hunting tartan falls into this category.

The term only originated in Victorian times and was used to describe a tartan in darker shades, such as blues and greens.

This is why for some surnames, there may be a modern tartan in bright colours and a hunting tartan in darker ones.

Either may be worn and it's thought that the garish appearance of early synthetic dyes might have been the cause of the hunting tartan trend.

When tennis players are serving, why do they ask for three or four balls when they only need two? Is it a superstition? P. McDaid, Paisley.

In any tennis tournament, you will see players asking ballboys or girls for more balls than they need, sticking one in their pocket for a second serve before throwing back the extra ones.

Players admit this is largely a ritual although Serbian No1 Novak Djokovic says he's convinced it is one that works for him.

But the real reason is they are looking for the balls that are the least fluffy as they will have been used less often.

Players believe that these balls will bounce and move through the aSk!

air more slowly and so select the balls that appear newer. ? How many Oscars did the actor James Stewart win and, given his name, did he have any Scottish roots? Mrs M. Templeton, Oban.

James Stewart received five Academy Award nominations for Best Actor during his career but won only one of them – in 1941 for his role as journalist Mike Connor in the romantic comedy The Philadelphia Story.

He was also nominated the year before for Mr Smith Goes To Washington, for It's A Wonderful Life in 1946, for Harvey in 1950 and for Anatomy of a Murder in 1959.

Stewart also picked up a second Oscar in 1985 for his lifetime achievement.

As his name suggests, he did have Scottish roots on his father's side. His family attended the First Presbyterian Church of Indiana and he remained a devout Christian throughout his life.


TENNIS ACE Novak Djokovic
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Sep 8, 2013
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