96% of People Can't Answer These Easy Jeopardy Questions. Can You?

By: Torrance Grey
Estimated Completion Time
5 min
96% of People Can't Answer These Easy Jeopardy Questions. Can You?
Image: shutterstock

About This Quiz

Hey, trivia buffs! Maybe you've taken the "Jeopardy!" online test several times already. Maybe you've waited by the phone (or email inbox), but the producers have just never called (or emailed). You're losing faith that you'll ever get your chance to tell Alex Trebek a funny, charming personal anecdote right after the first commercial break. 

Take heart! We've got a Jeopardy-style quiz for you, one that you can play from the comfort of your home (or the office ... you know who you are). We've incorporated categories from sports to science to notable people. And, of course, all the answers are phrased in the form of a question. 

Do you know which planet was downgraded to a "dwarf" in 2006? (Hint: It was discovered by Clyde Tombaugh). Or which Olympian has won the most medals -- gold and otherwise -- in the history of the Games? (Another hint: This athlete competed in the Summer, not Winter, Games). These questions aren't as hard as you'd usually see on a quiz show, but you may be surprised ... some of them might stump you! (If not, you can move up to some of our other zoo.com "pub trivia" or "Jeopardy-style" quizzes. 

Good luck, and may the odds be ever in your favor! (Oh, wait, that's something else ...)

History: You probably have a portrait of this Revolutionary War hero in your wallet right now.
Who is Aaron Burr?
Who is Abraham Lincoln?
Who is Martin Luther King?
Who is George Washington?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

OK, it's possible you have a "portrait" of Lincoln, too, as he's on the five-dollar bill. But Washington, who's on the $1 note, was the leader of the Continental Army during the American Revolution.

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Geography: Visit this country's Provence region to see the fields of lavender.
What is Andorra?
What is France?
What is Greece?
What is New Zealand?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

France was once a major military and world power. Now its greatest influence on the world is probably cultural -- that of its fashion and arts.

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Books: Her first draft of "Pride and Prejudice" was called "First Impressions."
Who is Jane Austen?
Who is Hilda Doolittle?
Who is Charlotte Bronte?
Who is Aphra Behn?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Austen wrote the first draft at 21 years old. She was wise to start working early, as she died at age 41.

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History: Joseph Goebbels was minister of propaganda for this political party.
What is the Peace and Freedom Party?
What is the Sturm und Drang Party?
What is the Nazi Party?
What is the Fallist Party?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

The Nazi Party was better known as the National Socialist German Workers Party. Don't mistake it for a Communist-leaning party; Hitler feared the spread of communism.

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Notable people: This "Sherlock" lead also starred in "The Imitation Game."
Who is Benedict Cumberbatch?
Who is Colin Farrell?
Who is Johnny Depp?
Who is Richard Grieco?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Cumberbatch has been everywhere in the past ten years, in movies like "The Imitation Game" and "12 Years a Slave," as well as a stage production of "Hamlet."

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Science: This element, which has a "Valley" named after it, makes up 25 percent of the earth's crust.
What is potassium?
What is selenium?
What is hydrogen?
What is silicon?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

"Silicon Valley" got its name because the element is essential to integrated circuits. These, in turn, are what make up the guts of computers and smartphones.

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Notable people: This larger-than-life author lived in both Key West and Cuba.
Who is Willa Cather?
Who is Ernest Hemingway?
Who is Henry James?
Who is J.R.R. Tolkien?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Fun fact: There's a popular myth that Key West's stray cats are descendants of Hemingway's many cats. Though a cat lover, the author didn't have a large number of cats until he lived in Cuba, where their numbers grew rapidly because of his refusal to neuter the toms.

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Sports: This American swimmer holds the most medals of any Olympian.
Who is Natalie Coughlin?
Who is Dara Torres?
Who is Michael Phelps?
Who is Shaun White?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Phelps not only has the most Olympic medals, he has the most golds as well. Phelps is from Baltimore, giving him his nickname, "the Baltimore Bullet."

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Science: I'm still a star in Hollywood, although I was wiped out about 66 million years ago.
What is the dodo bird?
What is the dinosaur?
What is the neanderthal?
What is the Thetan?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

To be specific, dinosaurs weren't wiped out altogether -- just non-avian dinosaurs. Birds are modern-day, feathered dinosaurs. But most people associate the name with the reptilian giants of prehistory.

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Mythology: When in Rome ... you'd call me Jupiter!
Who is Apollo?
Who is Hermes?
Who is Hades?
Who is Zeus?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

"Jupiter" was the Roman name for Zeus, king of the Olympian gods. Apollo is the only god listed above who had the same name in both the Greek and Roman traditions.

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Notable people: Though Steve Jobs captured public imagination, this man created the Apple II.
Who is Alan Turing?
Who is Bill Gates?
Who is Linus Torvalds?
Who is Steve Wozniak?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Wozniak was the nuts-and-bolts half of the partnership. He doesn't take himself as seriously as Jobs did, as evidenced by his turn on "Dancing With the Stars."

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Religion: Tom Cruise might be the most widely-recognized member of this church.
What is the Methodist Church?
What is the Church of Latter-Day Saints?
What is the Eastern Orthodox Church?
What is Scientology?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Whether Scientology really qualifies as a church, or is a radical self-improvement program, is up for debate. Whichever the case, of its most famous practitioners, like Cruise, John Travolta and Giovanni Ribisi, are Hollywood celebrities.

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Notable people: Jeremy Clarkson's run on this show ended after an altercation with a producer.
What is Coronation Street?
What is The Chase?
What is Hollyoaks?
What is Top Gear?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

During the years that Clarkson hosted the show alongside James May and Richard Hammond, "Top Gear" was both wildly popular and controversial for its ethnic humor. After Clarkson got into a physical scuffle with a junior producer, the BBC was forced to replace the popular trio with a new cast.

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Movies: If you win the Palme d'Or, your visit to this film festival has been successful.
What is Cannes?
What is Sundance?
What is Telluride?
What is Venice?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

The Palme d'Or, or Golden Palm, is the top prize at this festival. It was first awarded in 1939.

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Geography: If you want to visit this city, you're likely to land at O'Hare or Midway.
What is Boston?
What is Chicago?
What is New York City?
What is Miami?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Like New York, Chicago is served by two major airports. Expect delays: winters in Illinois can wreak havoc with flight times.

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History: This group awards a highly prestigious Peace Prize with the same name.
What is the LDS church?
What is the United Nations?
What is the Nobel Foundation?
What is the Gates Foundation?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Alfred Nobel patented dynamite, among other inventions. He was moved to create the Nobel prizes after reading a premature obituary of himself, which called him "the merchant of death."

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Recent history: Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger landed a plane in this unorthodox but necessary location.
What is Central Park?
What is the Hudson River?
What is Interstate 80?
What is New Hampshire Motor Speedway?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Sullenberger became known as "the hero of the Hudson" after ditching a US Airways plane into the river, saving everyone on board. Tom Hanks played him in the movie version of his life.

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Sports: This quarterback's impressive legacy might be forever shadowed by "Deflategate."
Who is Tom Brady?
Who is Joe Montana?
Who is Eli Manning?
Who is Peyton Manning?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

The catchily-named scandal occurred when underinflated balls were in play in an AFC championship game. Brady reportedly preferred an underinflated ball, and the suspicion was that the Patriots had tampered with the game balls. Brady was suspended for several games, but can console himself with his five Super Bowl championships.

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Pop culture: Great Caesar's ghost! Superman has a byline in this paper, although as Clark Kent.
What is the Daily Planet?
What is the Gotham Post?
What is the DC Direct?
What is the Midway City Examiner?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

"Great Caesar's ghost!" was editor Perry White's trademark expression. Props to Frank Langella for pulling it off, without irony, in "Superman Returns."

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Books: Your spellcheck isn't broken ... the title of this Stephen King novel is supposed to be spelled that way!
What is It?
What is Firestarter?
What is Pet Sematary?
What is The Tommyknockers?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

The spelling comes from a crude sign in front of the pet cemetery in this chilling novel. The pets that are buried there come back "wrong," and things only get worse when a newcomer to town decides to bury a human there.

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Movies: This 1973 horror film scared people back to church -- and away from pea soup!
What is Don't Look Now?
What is The Exorcist?
What is Halloween?
What is Alice, Sweet Alice?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Child actress Linda Blair gave a great performance as Regan, the possessed girl who vomits green slime (it was pea soup, actually). Her career arc didn't exactly live up to that of peers like Jodie Foster; she later appeared in a number of low-budget horror movies of the '70s and '80s.

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History: More than 30,000 Americans died in this "forgotten war."
What is WWII?
What is the Korean Conflict?
What is the Revolutionary War?
What is the War of the Roses?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

The name "Korean Conflict" comes from the fact that it was, officially, a "UN police action," not a war. Hostilities between the North and South never actually ended -- they're just in a very long cease fire.

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Geography: Come here to take in a Braves game or visit the "World of Coca-Cola" museum.
What is Atlanta?
What is Charlotte?
What is Tallahassee?
What is Miami?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Atlanta is the unofficial capital of the American South. It gained a significant economic boost in the 1990s from the 1996 Summer Olympics.

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Science: This Swede was a giant in the field of taxonomy (the naming of species).
Who is Carl Linnaeus?
Who is Bjorn Borg?
Who is Alfred Nobel?
Who is August Strindberg?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Linnaeus created the naming system that identifies organisms by genus and species. His great work is "Systema Naturae."

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History: Serbia and Croatia, as well as the disputed territory of Kosovo, were all part of this onetime Communist nation.
What is Czechoslovakia?
What is the Sudetenland?
What is the Ukraine?
What is Yugoslavia?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Both Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia broke up after the fall of the USSR. Without the uniting factor of Communism, smaller countries based on ethnic identities re-emerged. Sometimes this was a painful process, as the civil war in Kosovo makes clear.

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Books: I started a (fictional) revolution by just trying to save my sister.
Who is Lizzie Bennett?
Who is Katniss Everdeen?
Who is Jane Eyre?
Who is Scout Finch?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Katniss Everdeen is the heroine of the "Hunger Games" novels, which turned YA fiction upside down after several years of supernatural romances. Jennifer Lawrence played her in the movies.

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Geography: In terms of square miles, I'm the smallest state in the U.S.
What is Delaware?
What is Maine?
What is New Hampshire?
What is Rhode Island?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Rhode Island was one of the original 13 colonies. It is only 1,544 square miles, compared to western states like Texas and Montana, whose area is measured in hundreds of thousands of square miles.

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Astronomy: I was reclassified as a "dwarf planet" in 2006.
What is Mercury?
What is Mars?
What is Phobos?
What is Pluto?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Pluto had only been discovered in 1930, by astronomer Clyde Tombaugh. It enjoyed more than 70 years of planethood before being downgraded.

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Geography: You'll find the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and JFK's "eternal flame" here.
What is Arlington National Cemetery?
What is Beechwood Cemetery?
What is West Point?
What is the Vietnam War memorial?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Dead from all of America's wars are buried in Arlington National Cemetery, which is across the Potomac from Washington D.C. In addition, the victims of both US space shuttle disasters are interred there.

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Recent history: This child beauty pageant competitor was one of the most famous murder victims of the 1990s.
Who is April Lacy?
Who is Rebecca Schaeffer?
Who is JonBenet Ramsey?
Who is Megan Kanka?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

JonBenet Ramsey died at six years old in Boulder, Colorado. The case remains unsolved, but fascinates America because of her family's wealth and her beauty-pageant career, engineered by her mother, a former beauty queen herself.

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Geography: This street, the financial center of America, probably got its name from a wooden barrier.
What is Colfax Avenue?
What is Bond Street?
What is Pennsylvania Avenue?
What is Wall Street?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

The theory is that Wall Street was named for a wooden barrier against native Americans and the British. In the days of "Occupy Wall Street," bankers probably wished they had that barrier back!

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Movies: This comic actress broke through as clueless Cindy Campbell in the "Scary Movie" franchise.
Who is Anna Faris?
Who is Scarlett Johansson?
Who is Amy Schumer?
Who is Mindy Kaling?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

The Cindy Campbell role was not for the faint of heart. Cindy was subjected to countless indignities and made a number of pratfalls, even as she survived four horror-movie parodies.

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Movies: This British actor was a Jedi knight onscreen and a knight in real life.
Who is Alec Guinness?
Who is John Gielgud?
Who is Hugh Laurie?
Who is John Barrymore?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Guinness played Obi-Wan Kenobi in the original "Star Wars." He had already been knighted by Queen Elizabeth in 1959.

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History: These unassuming little islands were the cause for a war in 1982.
What are the Canary Islands?
What are the Falklands?
What are the Maldives?
What are the Seychelles?
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Argentina attempted to reclaim this British holding from England, as the Falklands are just off the coast of Argentina. Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher wasn't having any of that and sent forces to protect British sovereignty.They were successful, but at the cost of nearly 1,000 lives, Argentinian and British.

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History: This Mormon leader was the first presidential candidate to be assassinated.
John Fitzgerald Kennedy
Abraham Lincoln
Gerald Ford
Joseph Smith
Correct Answer
Wrong Answer

Though we think of assassination as a loner with a gun in a crowd, Smith was killed when a mob stormed a jail where he was being held pending a trial for starting a riot. It was somewhat incidental that he'd announced himself an independent candidate for president months earlier.

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