Geology Trivia

100+ Best Geology Trivia Questions & Answers

Mike Oberman

Updated: July 14th, 2023

Discover fascinating facts about geology with over 100+ trivia questions and answers! From the colors of gemstones to the composition of rocks, this collection will take you on a journey through Earth's rocky wonders.

General Geology Trivia

Question: In maritime navigation, what name is given to an area of rocks just below the surface of the sea?

Answer: Reef

Question: Petrology is the study of rocks from which perspective?

Answer: Chemical

Question: Which of these planets is made up of gas rather than rocks?

Answer: Jupiter

Question: Rocks are broken down by the elements by what gradual process?

Answer: Weathering

Question: The word geology orginates from which language?

Answer: Greek

Question: What is the name given to the ancient remains of living things preserved in rocks?

Answer: Fossils

Question: What element makes up most of the weight of water and about half the weight of most rocks?

Answer: Oxygen

Question: Columbia is the capital of which American state?

Answer: South Carolina

Question: Columbus is the state capital of which U.S.A. state?

Answer: Texas

Question: What name is given to molten rocks thrown out by a volcano?

Answer: Lava

Question: When studying rocks and soils, which of these could you use to separate small particles from bigger ones?

Answer: Sieve

Question: What term is used for the part of the soil that is always frozen in cold climates?

Answer: Permafrost

Question: What piece of equipment is used to break up clods of soil and to cover seeds after sowing?

Answer: Harrow

Question: Moonstone is a pearly variety of which of these rocks?

Answer: Feldspar

Question: In geology, what are the distinct layers into which sedimentary rocks are divided?

Answer: Strata

Question: Which of these increases the nitrogen compounds in soil?

Answer: Lightening

Question: What is the name of the study of rocks and the earth's crust?

Answer: Geology

Question: Which color indicates that soil is rich in organic matter?

Answer: Black

Question: Which country in the North Atlantic ocean is built entirely of volcanic rocks?

Answer: Iceland

Question: A break in the sequence of sedimentary rocks, usually seen as an eroded surface, is called... what?

Answer: Unconformity

Gemstones Trivia

Question: What color is the gemstone 'peridot'?

Answer: Green

Question: Which two colors make up the naturally occurring gemstone known as 'watermelon tourmaline'?

Answer: Green and pink

Question: What color is the gemstone 'jet'?

Answer: Black

Question: What color is the peridot stone?

Answer: Green

Question: Sapphire is usually which color?

Answer: Blue

Question: Which of these is a precious stone?

Answer: Diamond

Question: Which gemstone can be blue, orange, yellow or colorless?

Answer: Topaz

Question: The gemstones rhodochrosite and almandine are always shades of which color?

Answer: Pink

Question: What color is the distinctive lapis lazuli gemstone?

Answer: Blue

Question: The mineral 'cubic zirconium' can be cut and polished to look like which precious stone?

Answer: Diamond

Rocks Trivia

Question: Which of these soil types does NOT contain any rock particles?

Answer: Peat

Question: The mineral 'galena' is the most important source of which metal?

Answer: Lead

Question: What is the name of the molten rock that is found deep inside volcanoes?

Answer: Magma

Question: What is the name for dark volcanic glass?

Answer: Obsidian

Question: Which rock forms the greater part of the White Cliffs of Dover?

Answer: Chalk

Question: Which of these rocks is hard and impermeable?

Answer: Marble

Question: Which tectonic plate lies between the Pacific Plate and the South American Plate?

Answer: Nazca Plate

Question: Which of these rocks is the hardest?

Answer: Granite

Question: What type of rock is cooled lava from a volcano?

Answer: Igneous

Question: Which is the only type of rock that floats?

Answer: Pumice

Question: What name is given to the semi-molten rock found in the Earth's mantle?

Answer: Magma

Question: In what sort of rock do most caves occur?

Answer: Limestone

Question: Which rock consists of quartz, feldspar, and mica crystals?

Answer: Granite

Soil & Erosion Trivia

Question: What name is given to the wearing away of rocks and soil?

Answer: Erosion

Question: Earthworms in the soil help to do what?

Answer: Mix the nutrient

Question: Soil below the surface of a tundra that remains frozen permanently is called what?

Answer: Permafrost

Question: In science, what 'L' is a type of fertile soil consisting of sand, silt, clay, and organic material?

Answer: Loam

Question: The soil type in deciduous woodlands is what?

Answer: Brown soil

Question: Growing plants without soil is called what?

Answer: Hydroponics

Question: Which of these does not drain as well as the others?

Answer: Clay soil

Question: Which of these is the name of a type of soil?

Answer: Loam

Question: Which of these processes is responsible for America's Monument Valley?

Answer: Erosion

Question: Which name is given to a form of rich soil?

Answer: Loam

Question: Which of these is NOT a cause of erosion of rocks and soil?

Answer: Fire

Question: Which of these is a taiga soil?

Answer: Podsol

Geology History Trivia

Question: After two defeats, which European Ryder Cup captain bounced back in 1995 with a memorable victory on US soil?

Answer: Bernard Gallacher

Question: In 1587, who was the first child born to English parents on American soil?

Answer: Virginia Dare

Question: Who is considered the "Father of Geology" for his contributions to the field in the 18th century?

Answer: James Hutton

Question: In what year was the theory of plate tectonics widely accepted by the scientific community?

Answer: 1960s

Question: Who proposed the concept of continental drift in 1912, which laid the foundation for the theory of plate tectonics?

Answer: Alfred Wegener

Question: Which geologist developed the principle of uniformitarianism, stating that the geological processes occurring today have operated throughout Earth's history?

Answer: Charles Lyell

Question: What famous geological landmark in the United States was formed by the erosion of the Colorado River over millions of years?

Answer: Grand Canyon

Question: Who discovered and named the first dinosaur fossils in the early 19th century?

Answer: William Buckland

Question: Which scientist developed the concept of the geologic time scale, dividing Earth's history into different time periods based on rock layers and fossil records?

Answer: Georges Cuvier

Question: In what year did the devastating eruption of Mount Vesuvius bury the Roman cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum?

Answer: 79 AD

Question: Who is credited with the discovery of radioactivity and was the first to use radioisotopes for age dating in geology?

Answer: Marie Curie

Question: Which geologist proposed the theory of seafloor spreading in the 1960s, providing evidence for plate tectonics?

Answer: Harry Hess

Geological Phenomenon Trivia

Question: By mass, which element makes up 26 per cent of the Earth's crust?

Answer: Silicon

Question: What stone is only mined in Mount Kilimanjaro?

Answer: Tanzanite

Question: What name is given to the useless stony minerals that occur with a metallic ore?

Answer: Gangue

Question: What abrasive rock is produced by gases frothing in volcanic lava?

Answer: Pumice

Question: Which sort of stone is the Derbyshire gorge, Dovedale, formed out of?

Answer: Limestone

Question: What name is given to a volcano that is made up of layers of volcanic ash and that has a steep, conical shape?

Answer: Cinder volcano

Question: What do biostratigraphers do?

Answer: Analyze rock samples

Question: What word is used to describe the energy obtained from the Earth's interior?

Answer: Geothermal energy

Question: What do you call a person who studies rocks?

Answer: Geologist

Question: What sort of rock makes up the walls of the Grand Canyon?

Answer: Sedimentary

Question: What type of rocks form when hot, liquid rock from deep in the earth cools and becomes solid?

Answer: Igneous

Question: Rocks emit which kind of radiation?

Answer: Gamma

Question: On which continent is the Great Rift Valley?

Answer: Africa

Question: What name is given to any naturally occurring chemical found in the Earth?

Answer: Mineral

Question: How many times have Brazil won the World Cup on European soil?

Answer: Once

Question: By mass, what percentage of the Earth's crust is made up of just 8 elements?

Answer: 98%

Miscellaneous Geology Trivia

Question: How much more powerful is an earthquake that measures 6 on the Richter scale than one that measures 5?

Answer: x 10

Question: After oxygen and silicon, by mass, what is the most abundant element in the Earth's Crust?

Answer: Aluminum

Question: Which country produced almost all known diamonds until 1725?

Answer: India

Question: By mass, which gas is most common in the compounds that make up the Earth's Crust?

Answer: Oxygen

Question: What name is given to the scale of hardness of minerals on which Talc registers 1 and Diamond registers 10?

Answer: Moh's Scale

Question: By mass, which of these elements is the second most common element on Earth?

Answer: Silicon

Question: In the Earth's structure, what is the name for the sharp boundary between the crust and the mantle?

Answer: Moho

Question: Where would you find the extinct volcano, Olympus Mons?

Answer: Mars

Question: Which two elements make up the greater part of the Earth's inner core?

Answer: Iron and nickel