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Protocol, Customs and Traditions Trivia: Part 3

Welcome back to part three of Protocol, Customs, and Traditions Trivia quiz. If you missed the previous posts, check out Trivia Quiz Part One and Trivia Part Two quizzes for the complete challenge.


Trivia (Part 3)


1. What are some traditional hostess gifts? 

2. When is reciprocity for a dinner party or event appropriate? 

3. What side of the place setting is the bread plate and which side are the drinks (water/wine goblets); and how do you know which utensil to use? Hint “b” and “d.”

4. The small spoon and/or fork located at the top of the place setting on a formal table is used for which course?

5. At the table, where is the appropriate place for your cellphone?

6. Where do you stand while eating at a buffet?

7. At what age can children attend a military ball?

8. Whether sitting at a formal or casual table, when is the appropriate time to sit and to begin eating?

9. What type of animal is allowed at official military events?

10. Which seat is the place of honor at a table?

11. When the Medal of Honor is bestowed on an individual, how is it stated

12. When making an introduction, do you introduce the lower or higher-ranking service member first?

13. When creating an invitation to a promotion ceremony from Captain to Major, how do you state the invitation?  Is it proper to use the word Promotable or (P) on the invitation?

Protocol,Customs, and Traditions Trivia ANSWERS:


1. Wine, flowers, chocolates, homemade items, candles, tea towels, and local coffee table books which can double as a guest book. Hostess gifts are not gifted at coffees, NY’s receptions, hail & farewells.

2. Reciprocity is appropriate for peer gatherings as a means of introducing his/her subordinates to the rest of the unit, e.g., company commander invites battalion commander over for hamburgers to introduce the battalion commander, their senior rater, to the platoon leaders.

3. Make a circle with your thumb and forefinger. Your left hand will form a “b” and your right hand will form a “d.” When looking at the place setting, bread “b” is located at the top left and drinks “d” is at your top right. Silverware is used from the outside to the inside throughout the meal.

4. The fork and spoon are laid opposite each other for coffee and dessert. When two spoons are laid opposite each other at the top of the place setting, the dessert will include something soft like ice cream.



5. Nowhere.When no one is speaking it is OK to take pictures at the table, but make sure to tuck away your phone after use. If you need to take a call, excuse yourself from the table and quickly walk out of the room. Cell phones should be silenced at the table.

6. Find a place to stand out of the buffet area; don’t graze off the buffet. Often, you are invited to return for seconds provided you take a clean plate.

7. Individuals 18 and over would be the suggested age to attend a military ball.

8. For formal events, only after the head table or host(s) are seated should guests sit. No one should start eating until the master of ceremonies welcomes everyone or the start of dinner is indicated. As a guest in someone’s home, you are welcome to sit when invited to but wait to eat until the host/hostess begins eating.

9. Only service animals should accompany guests at any military event. Dressing up your teacup chihuahua does not make them a guest!

10. The seat to the right of the host (and hostess) is reserved for the guest(s) of honor. From there, the order of precedence (rank and protocol regardless of gender) helps guide the seating plan around the table.

11. Medal of Honor“Recipient” (not winner). The Medal of Honor is the United States Armed Forces highest military decoration and is awarded to those who have distinguished themselves by acts of valor.

12. State higher ranking (or guest of honor, awardee, etc.,) name first, then lower ranking.

 “Sergeant Major Smith, I would like to introduce you to Sergeant Miller.”

13. The rank on a promotion invitation should reflect the rank held on the day the invitation is sent.  It is not appropriate to use (P) or Promotable on the addressing or wording of any invitation. Army Regulation 25-50

Our M:M Protocol and Traditions Team — Ann, Ginger, Michelle and Lynda — hope you have enjoyed these trivia games! 





*For more from the Traditions and Protocol team, check out their Author Page.





  • Protocol and Etiquette Team

    Ann Crossley and Ginger Perkins are the authors of "The Army Spouse Handbook," the go-to guide for the 21st century Army spouse. The 440-page book describes situations that you may encounter as an Army spouse, irrespective of your spouse’s rank or assignment. The book is not meant to be read from cover-to-cover, but kept handy and used as a reference book when you need to know what to expect in social situations. Michelle Hodge, a seasoned spouse, has taught protocol and customs classes and continues to be an advocate for soldiers and family members. Lynda Smith, the newest member of the Traditions and Protocol team, enjoys finding new ways to bring old Army traditions to life with fun and humorous experiences, a little old-school vibe, and a modern twist.


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