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Difficult Trivia Quiz Questions (2024 update)

Below you’ll find a selection of difficult trivia quiz questions. At least we think they are. Maybe they’re easy for you…. Let’s find out! Test your knowledge or use them for a Quiz. In fact, use them however you want ;-).

This page was last updated on: January 10, 2024

Difficult quiz questions

Click on the question to see the answer.

Question: What do you call the study of the meaning of words, phrases and texts?

Answer: Semantics

Question: Which figure from Greek mythology do we know from the twelve works?

Answer: Heracles (or: Hercules)

Question: Who was the first American to receive the Nobel Peace Prize in 1906?

Answer: Theodore Roosevelt

Question: What do you call the worldview that placed the Earth at the center of the solar system, and of the entire universe?

Answer: Geocentrism

Question: What do you call the first five books of the Tanakh (Hebrew Bible)?

Answer: Torah

Question: Which Frenchman refused the Nobel Prize for literature in 1964?

Answer: Jean-Paul Sartre

Question: What is another word for the art of decorative handwriting?

Answer: Calligraphy

Question: What does a speleologist study?

Answer: The exploration and study of caves and underground spaces

Question: Who wrote the book Anna Karenina?

Answer: Lev Tolstoy

Question: Who was Napoleon Bonaparte's first wife?

Answer: Joséphine de Beauharnais

Question: What architectural principle, described in 1791 by English liberal philosopher Jeremy Bentham, allows groups to be controlled, disciplined, monitored, studied, compared and improved?

Answer: The panopticon

Question: Which philosopher do we know from the Allegory of the Cave?

Answer: Plato

Question: What was the name of the project in which the first nuclear weapons were developed during World War II?

Answer: The Manhattan Project

Question: What has been the motto of the United States Marine Corps since 1883?

Answer: Semper fidelis

Question: Which planet in our solar system has the highest average surface temperature?

Answer: Venus

Question: What is the name of the ethical principle that states that the moral rightness of an action depends on its consequences, and that the goal is to achieve the greatest happiness for the greatest number of people?

Answer: Utilitarianism

Question: Which element is named after the Greek goddess of the rainbow?

Answer: Iridium

Question: Which author wrote the novella "The Stranger"?

Answer: Albert Camus

Question: What is the smallest bone in the human body?

Answer: The stapes (it is in your ear)

Question: Who composed the musical piece "The Planets"?

Answer: Gustav Holst

Question: Which substance is produced by the pituitary gland and stimulates the growth of cells and tissues in the body?

Answer: Somatotropin or growth hormone

Question: In what unit is radioactivity expressed?

Answer: Becquerel (Bq)

Question: What is the study of fingerprints called?

Answer: Dactyloscopy or dactylography

Question: What is another name for a song of praise on a particular subject?

Answer: A hymn

Question: Which book begins with the sentence, "I am a broker in coffee, and live at Lauriergracht, No 37."?

Answer: Max Havelaar by Multatuli

Question: In 1975, which French philosopher published the book Surveiller et punir: Naissance de la prison?

Answer: Michel Foucault

Question: What is the element with the highest atomic mass that occurs naturally on Earth?

Answer: Uranium

Question: On whom was a ban imposed in 1521 by the Roman Catholic Church?

Answer: Martin Luther

Question: By what word is the science of war and peace referred to?

Answer: Polemology

Question: Who is considered the founder of parliamentarianism in the Netherlands?

Answer: Johan Rudolph Thorbecke

Question: From which religion is Mahayana a movement?

Answer: Buddhism

Question: What is the most common blood group among people worldwide?

Answer: Blood type O

Question: Which animal has the largest brain relative to its body size?

Answer: The sperm whale

Question: What is the process called in which plants use light to make food?

Answer: Photosynthesis

Question: Which physical constant is denoted by h?

Answer: Planck’s constant

Question: What famous painting was stolen from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in 1990 and still has not been recovered?

Answer: “The Concert” by Johannes Vermeer

Question: What is the transition from the German Empire to the Weimar Republic in 1918/1919 called?

Answer: November Revolution

Question: Which composer wrote the "Symphonie Fantastique"?

Answer: Hector Berlioz

Question: What do you call a traditional folk tale that takes place in a known place and at a known moment in time and is often grown around a historical core?

Answer: A saga

Question: In Greek mythology, who was goddess of controlled warfare and peace?

Answer: Pallas Athena

Question: What is the conductor called that allows electric current to flow only in one direction?

Answer: A diode

Question: What do you call it when someone graduates with the highest distinction?

Answer: Summa cum laude or maxima cum laude

Question: What are the first names of The Brothers Grimm?

Answer: Jacob Ludwig Karl and Wilhelm Karl

Question: Which novel by Gabriel García Márquez tells the story of seven generations of the Buendía family?

Answer: One hundred years of solitude (Cien años de soledad)

Question: Who developed the first vaccination against polio?

Answer: Jonas Salk

Question: Which humanist wrote the satirical work Praise of Folly?

Answer: Desiderius Erasmus

Question: What is the name of the subfield of mathematics in which algorithms for problems in continuous mathematics or mathematical analysis are studied?

Answer: Numerical mathematics

Question: On the geological time scale, what is the name of the period from 2.58 million (Ma) to 11.7 thousand years (ka) ago?

Answer: The Pleistocene

Question: Which Dane who received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1922 is widely regarded as one of the founders of atomic physics?

Answer: Niels Bohr

Question: Which book introduced the term "Big Brother" and the concept of a totalitarian state?

Answer: 1984 by George Orwell

Question: What does the Latin maxim Beati pauperes spiritu mean?

Answer: Blessed are the poor in spirit

Question: What do you call the philosophical concept that states that every event or state of affairs is not just random, but has a cause?

Answer: Determinism

Question: Which U.S. president addressed The Gettysburg Address in 1863?

Answer: Abraham Lincoln

Question: What do you call the subfield of linguistics that studies the origin of words?

Answer: Etymology

Question: In what century did Delft receive city rights?

Answer: In the 13th century (1246).

Question: In what war was the Battle of Thermopylae fought?

Answer: The second Persian War

Question: What are the Islamic lore recorded in large collections about Muhammad's doings and sayings called?

Answer: Hadith

Question: What do you call a mathematical figure that has two equal and parallel planes, and other planes?

Answer: Prism

Question: In The Divine Comedy, by whom is Dante accompanied in his imaginary journey through the three realms of the afterlife?

Answer: Vergil

Question: What is the name of the natural law of optics that indicates how light rays are refracted at the transition from one medium to another, for example, from air to glass?

Answer: Snellius’ law or law of refraction

Question: Which famous author wrote the book One Hundred Years of Solitude?

Answer: Gabriel García Márquez

Question: What is Calcium(di)hydroxide also called?

Answer: Slaked lime

Question: What is the largest river in Poland?

Answer: The Wisła

Question: By what treaty did the colony of New Netherland (which included New Amsterdam) officially come under English rule?

Answer: Peace of Westminster (1674)

Question: Who wrote the famous Dutch poem "Iemand stelt de vraag"?

Answer: Remco Campert

Question: How is Bruxism better known?

Answer: Teeth grinding and/or teeth clenching

Question: What do you call the cooking technique that involves first browning food (usually meat) in fat and then slowly cooking it in a covered pot with a small amount of liquid, such as broth or wine, at low heat?

Answer: Braising

Question: What is the name usually given to the main, greatest or most important work of, say, an author, scientist or artist?

Answer: Magnum opus

Question: Which Dutchman received the 2016 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for the development of molecular machines?

Answer: Ben Feringa

Question: What do you call a forced payment to the government for a service rendered?

Answer: Retribution

Question: Which Latin expression means as much as "love of (fate)", loving that which is inevitable?

Answer: Amor Fati

Question: What is the name of the patron saint of travelers, motorists and of the city of Roermond?

Answer: Christopher

Question: What well-known hypothesis states that the specific language we speak affects the way we think about reality?

Answer: Sapir-Whorf hypothesis

Bonus difficult questions cool

Question: What is the opposite of albinism?

Answer: Melanism

Question: Which writer is known for the novels The Trial, The Castle and the novella The Metamorphosis?

Answer: Franz Kafka

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