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Last Updated: Friday, 24 October 2003, 14:22 GMT 15:22 UK
10 things we didn't know this time last week
10 windfalls - by Carol Hill

It's easy to lose track of the news. So at the end of the week, it's good to keep an eye on some of those things which shouldn't go unnoticed.

If you spot something you think should be included next week, send it to us using the form at the bottom of the page.


1. Let's start with Concorde. So many things to say, so little time. But how about this: it was the world's fastest and highest flying aircraft - and yet it had frosted toilet windows. Why?

2. The Romans - even those living in Pompeii - had no word for volcano. When Vesuvius erupted, they may well have thought it was a message from the gods - which in turn might explain the eventual word volcano. It comes from Vulcan, the Roman god of fire.

3. Three new species of fish have been discovered every week over the past three years, scientists have announced. By 2010, they estimate that they might have found as many as 25,000 new species. And there could be more to come - it is thought that no more than one tenth of 1% of the ocean has been studied closely.

4. If everyone in Britain swapped three of their ordinary light bulbs for low-energy ones, it would save enough energy to light all the street lights in the country, according to the Environment Agency

5. There is no mention of lesbianism in the Old Testament.

6. The third largest employer in the world, after the Chinese army and Indian railways, is the NHS. (Thanks to Nice Work on Radio 4.)

7. Sales of Marmite grew by more than two million jars a year, after it switched its advertising approach to highlight the fact that loads of people loathe it.

If you're in the UK, you can see 10 Things at the weekend on Ceefax, page 129

8. You own the copyright in letters you have written even after you have sent them to someone. And this copyright will exist for 70 years after you have died. Although it doesn't appear to have been tested by the courts in the UK, this should equally apply to e-mails.

9. One third of Americans believe hell is "an actual place of torment and suffering where people's souls go after death", according to a poll of views on the afterlife (see Internet links for details). Half of one per cent of Americans think they will go to hell themselves. Sixty-four percent think they will go to heaven.

10. One last thing about Concorde. The world record for putting a golf ball is held by Suggs, the former Madness singer. In the time it took his putt to go from one end of the plane to the other, the plane had travelled five miles.

If you see something you think should be included next week, let us know using the form below. Thanks this week to Mick Harvey, and Neil Aust.

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