Quickly now, what book appears in the Guinness World Records for being the most sold copyrighted book in the world today? The answer is the Guinness World Records. The book is a reference guide containing a collection of all the records in the world. And it has the unique distinction of having a world record entry in its own book.
The Guinness World Records used to be known as The Guinness Book of Records and The Guinness Book of World Records. It is considered the prime international authority in the catalog and verification of records around the world. To ensure the records’ authenticity and credibility, Guinness has in its employ a number of adjudicators who will check the setting of the record.
The Fastest Game Bird in Europe
It all started out quite innocuously. The managing director of Guinness Breweries at that time, a man by the name of Sir Hugh Beaver (picture above), was in a shooting party in Ireland. He got involved in an argument with another member of the party regarding the fastest game bird in the continent. One insisted on the golden plover, while the other said it was the grouse.
Beaver went to the library after the incident to find out the answer. It was then that he realized that there was no available reference book that would answer such a question. In so doing, he wondered how many more similar arguments have occurred as people debate about such things.
Beaver contacted Norris and Ross McWhirter, who were twins that had a fact-finding company based in London. He asked the twins to compile all the records that they could find into a book to be called the Guinness Book of Records. A thousand copies were ordered with the intention of giving it away to the valued clients of Guiness Breweries. Little did they know that the demand for the book would so high that it became a source of income for the company, with the book going straight to the top of the bestsellers list in Great Britain. It was also sold in the United States where it quickly became a hit. Eventually, the book became a household name synonymous with anything that has to do with a world record.
As to the fastest game bird in the European continent, it turned out to be the golden plover.
In All Forms and Sizes
The original books were rich in text and listed down in an academic fashion all the recognized world records in the Guinness database. The McWhirters, however, were out of the company by 1995, with Ross passing away in 1975 at the hands of the Provisional Irish Republican Army and Norris being ousted 20 years later. The new publishers decided to make the book an illustrated edition, which means that not all records are listed anymore.
Guinness does recognize a wide variety of records, including the out-of-this-world. Some of the records in its database include the usual longest-running television show or longest-tenured member of a drama series. It also has items that are weird, such as the following:
- Heaviest tumor
- Longest time spent playing a video game
- Most poisonous plant
- Longest underwater kiss
- Longest wedding gown train
- Largest gathering of people dressed like Mahatma Gandhi
- Largest gathering of chefs who threw their hats into the air
- Most number of spoons magnetized to the human body
- Longest line of coins
- Heaviest onion
- Most tattooed person
- Oldest pair of twins
- Heaviest plane pulled over 100 meters by people in wheelchairs
- Youngest person to visit all the countries in the world
In addition, Guinness also recognizes in its book the person with the most number of records.
Guinness has also set aside November 9 of each year as Guinness World Records Day. This started in 2005. The 2006 edition earned its own spot in the Guinness book for being the biggest international event in the world, with over 100,000 people from over 10 countries participating in the event.
World Records that were Broken in 2012
For 2012, the following records were set and duly recognized by the Guinness World Records.
- Farthest distance to pull a vehicle with meat hooks attached to the back – Burnaby Q. Orbax, 111.7 meters
- Fastest 100 meters while on all fours – Kenichi Ito, 17.47 seconds
- Fastest film to gross $1 billion in the box office – The Avengers, 10 days
- Fastest motorcycle wheelie while on top of ice – Ryan Sucjanek, 152.89 kilometers per hour
- Fastest speed skiing whlle going backwards – Anders Backe, 128.7 kilometers per hour
- Fastest time to climb The Torch Doha unassisted – Alain Robert, 1 hour 33 and minutes 47 seconds
- Fastest vehicle drift – Lars Verbraeken, 179.59 kilometers per hour
- First 1080 degrees on a skateboard – Tom Schaar, 12 years old
- Furthest slam dunk while using a trampoline – ThiloSchwarck, 7.75 meters
- Heaviest bike – Wouter van den Bosch, 750 kilograms
- Highest bungee jump into water while on fire – Yoni Roch, 65.09 meters
- Highest blob jump – Christian ‘Elvis’ Guth, 22.0 meters
- Highest parachute jump while on freefall – Felix Baumgartner
- Largest drum set – Dr. Mark Temperato, 340 pieces
- Largest loop the loop in a car – Greg Tracy and Tanner Foust, Hot Wheels Double Loop Dare, 18.29 meters
- Longest ramp jump of 720 degrees on skis – Joey Spencer, 26.95 meters
- Longest wave surfed by a dog – Abbie, 107.2 meters
- Lowest roadworthy car – Okayama Sanyo High School, 45.2 centimeters
- Most continuous loops by a paraglider – HoracioLlorens, 568 loops
- Most number of multiple circus tricks – ChayneHultgren
- Most stunts performed by a living actor – Jackie Chan
- Most watched video online – “Gangnam Style” by Psy
- Shortest living man – Chandra BahdurDangi – 54.6 centimeters
- Tightest parallel parking in reverse – Ronny Wechselberger, 35 centimeters
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