Can You Get More Than 29/35 on This Tricky General Knowledge Quiz?


By: Robin Tyler

6 Min Quiz

Image: Getty Images via Dizzle52

About This Quiz

Some people take pride in their general knowledge base. But what exactly is general knowledge? In a nutshell, it's about having a broad understanding over a range of subjects. It includes topics you might not deal with daily — things like history, science or geography. Nor is it just about being on top of the latest celebrity gossip, fashions and trends or what a song's current placement on the Billboard chart is because you happened to hear it yesterday.

General knowledge includes a range of time frames as well. It's not only about the present; it's also about the past and even the future.

We're going to test your general knowledge to the limit with this quiz. Even if you are a bit of a trivia buff, you can expect to be stumped by some of our questions. A score of 29/35 would be incredible. But wait — you're going for full marks? Well, that's probably not possible, but it doesn't hurt to give it a try. You just may surprise us! 

Before you are 35 questions covering a range of subjects, including wars, U.S. presidents, geography, musicians and Hollywood. Let's get started and see how well you do. Good luck. And remember, you've got this!

What's the largest city in the United States of America?

New York City is the largest city in the United States, with an estimated population of 8.4 million people. This is more than double the population of Los Angeles, which, at about 4 million residents, is the second largest city.


Which one of these cities has the highest population?

Shanghai, China has a population of roughly 24 million. By comparison, the population of New York City is about 8.4 million. It's nearly 9 million in London and about 5.6 million in Singapore.


What's the highest mountain in the world?

Mount Everest is the tallest mountain in the world, with an elevation of 29,035 feet. It is part of the Himalayas in southern Asia. The next tallest mountain is K2, which peaks at 28,251 feet and lies between China and Pakistan.


Which of these rivers is the longest?

The Amazon is the longest river on this list, measuring just under 4,000 miles or at least 4,000 miles, depending on whom you ask. The dispute over the river's length has led to a disagreement as to whether it or the Nile River (at 4,132 miles) is the longest river in the world.


Name the largest ocean on Earth.

The Pacific Ocean is by far the largest ocean, spanning some 63 million miles. It's so large that every continent on Earth could fit inside the Pacific Ocean basin. It's also the oldest ocean basin, with rocks dating back about 200 million years.


Can you name the world's largest hot desert?

The Sahara Desert is the largest hot desert in the world, spanning about 3.3 million miles in Africa. Two other deserts, in Antarctica and the Arctic, are larger, but those are considered cold deserts.


Where would you find the Sea of Tranquility?

The Sea of Tranquility is the site of the first moon-landing by humans on July 20, 1969, when U.S. astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walked on the moon as part of the Apollo 11 space mission. Despite its name, this part of the moon is dry and not filled with water.


Of all the states that make up the United States, only one begins with the letter P. What's it called?

When Pennsylvania became a state on Dec. 12, 1787, it was only the second state to join the Union. Delaware was the first to ratify the U.S. Constitution, doing so five days before Pennsylvania did.


Name the capital of Spain.

Madrid, the capital of Spain, is home to around 3.2 million people. It is considered the country's arts and financial centers and is home to several of Spain's most well-known universities.


Which actor played "Neo" in The Matrix trilogy?

Keanu Reeves was already a veteran actor in Hollywood by the time The Matrix came along in 1999. His role as Neo in The Matrix turned him into a true powerhouse superstar, however. Before that, he was known for his roles in "Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure" (1989) and in "Speed" (1994).


Name the Ukrainian nuclear powerplant that had a meltdown in 1986, spreading radioactivity across Europe.

The Chernobyl catastrophe, which occurred on April 26, 1986, was the worst nuclear disaster in history. Thousands of people suffered the longterm effects of radiation exposure, including being diagnosed with cancer, in the months and years after the meltdown.


Name the capital of Canada.

Situated along the Ottawa River in the southeastern province of Ontario, the city of Ottawa is home to the Canadian federal government. Once a logging town, the community known as Bytown was renamed Ottawa in 1855. It has since grown to become a metropolitan hub fueled in part by the tech industry.


Which European city is known for having streets comprised of canals?

Venice, known for its 26 miles of canals that connect more than 100 islands, is located in northeastern Italy. Tens of millions of tourists flock here every year. To get around Venice, people travel by foot or in boats on the canals, but not by cars.


In what year was the Berlin Wall demolished?

The Berlin Wall, which had divided East and West Germany for 28 years, came down in 1989 as the Cold War was winding down. The head of the East German Communist Party declared that November that residents could cross into West Berlin freely. Many gathered at the wall that night to celebrate.


What is an e-book?

With the advent of smartphones and handheld reading devices, e-books, or electronic books, have become a popular way to read one's favorite writers. An even faster growing trend has been the shift toward audio books, which grew from 14% in 2016 to 20% in 2019, according to the Pew Research Center.


What will you find wrapped around sushi?

Most sushi rolls are wrapped in Nori, which are paper-like dark green sheets of edible seaweed. The first sushi restaurant in the United States is said to have opened in 1966 in Los Angeles. The restaurant was called Kawafuku.


Name the inventor of the telephone.

Alexander Graham Bell is generally credited with inventing the telephone in 1876. It's believed that the first words he said over the phone were to his lab assistant: "Mr. Watson, come here. I want to see you."


Who invented penicillin?

Alexander Fleming, a Scottish physician and scientist, discovered penicillin in 1928. He won a Nobel Prize for his efforts in 1945. Interestingly, he made his discovery quite by accident!


How many U.S. territories have permanent inhabitants?

The United States has five territories with inhabitants permanently living on them. These are American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.


Who did Prince Charles marry in 1981?

Lady Diana Spencer was 20 when she married Prince Charles, the eldest son of Queen Elizabeth II. The couple had two sons together, Prince William and Prince Henry (a.k.a. "Harry"), before divorcing in 1996.


In what year did World War I start?

World War I broke out in 1914 and did not end until 1918. The war pitted the Central Powers of Germany, Austria-Hungary and the Ottoman Empire against the Allied Powers, which included Great Britain, France, Russia, Italy, Japan and the United States.


In what year did the Korean War end?

The Korean War began in June 1950 when soldiers from North Korea invaded South Korea. U.S. troops got involved the next month, allying themselves with South Korea in hopes of keeping communism from spreading. The war ended in July 1953 with the two North and South Korea still divided.


Who was the U.S. president during the Persian Gulf War in the early '90s?

President George H.W. Bush ordered the invasion of Iraq after Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein's troops occupied Kuwait in August 1990. This occupation prompted leaders in Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries to seek help from allied nations. The conflict ended in April 1991 with a cease-fire agreement.


Who was in charge of Nazi Germany during World War II?

Adolf Hitler rose to power as chancellor of Germany in 1933. He set off World War II by ordering the invasion of Poland on Sept. 1, 1939. Two days later, France and Britain declared war against Germany.


Who painted the Mona Lisa?

Italian Renaissance artist Leonardo da Vinci painted the Mona Lisa between 1503 and 1519. It's believed this famous portrait depicted the image of Lisa Gherardini, the wife of a Florentine merchant. The painting is housed in the Louvre museum in Paris.


How many zodiac signs are there?

There are 12 zodiac signs in western astrology. They are Aquarius, Pisces, Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius and Capricorn. Daily horoscopes are based on these astrological signs.


What is Graceland known for?

Graceland, in Memphis, Tennessee, was the home of Elvis Presley, the King of Rock 'n Roll. More than 500,000 people visit Graceland each year. It became a National Historic Landmark in 2006.


World War II officially ended with a U.S. victory over Japan on which date?

Germany surrendered in May 1945, but Japan continued fighting through most of the summer, stopping only after the United States dropped atomic bombs on the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August. Japan officially surrendered on Sept. 2, 1945.


The famous equation, E=mc2, was derived by whom?

Physicist Albert Einstein came up with the theory of special relativity, represented by the equation E=mc2, in 1905. The formula states that the mass of an object times the speed of light equals that object's kinetic energy. Einstein later won a Nobel Prize for explaining the photoelectric effect.


A standard chess board consists of how many squares?

There are 64 squares on a standard checkered chess board, consisting of 32 white and 32 black squares. It's generally believed that chess was first played in India around the sixth century. The most powerful piece in modern-day chess is the queen.


What do they call "soccer" in other countries?

While it's called "soccer" in the United States, most countries refer to the sport as "football" (or "futbol"). This is widely considered the most popular sport in the world, with fans across the globe tuning in every four years to watch the World Cup.


How many Ivy League schools are there in the United States?

The eight Ivy League colleges and universities are among the most selective schools in the country and world. They include Princeton, Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Brown and Cornell universities, as well as the University of Pennsylvania and Dartmouth College. They're all located in the Northeast.


Name the crooner best known for the song "My Way."

Frank Sinatra's "My Way" was released in 1969. The song was written by Paul Anka and would go on to spend 75 non-consecutive weeks — from April 1969 to September 1971 — on the UK Top 40 chart.


Who invented the light bulb?

Of his 1,093 patents, Thomas Edison's most famous is perhaps the light bulb, which he invented in 1879. Despite having very little formal education, Edison was one of America's most industrious inventors. He died on Oct. 18, 1931, at age 84.


Where does the U.S. president live?

The White House has been the official home of the U.S. president since 1800. That year, John Adams, the country's second commander-in-chief, took up residence at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW in Washington, D.C.


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