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Andrew Alden

The 2009 Christmas Geology Quiz

By December 25, 2009

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The presents are open, the food has kicked in, the rest of the idle day awaits—now here's something more interesting: a once-a-year quiz on geology! Ready?

1. Which of these is done by water: fairing, faulting, fretting, fritting?

2. To what do these names pertain: Miller, Bravais, Michel-Levy, Snell?

3. If your candle goes out in a coal mine, do you shout "blackdamp," "firedamp," "whitedamp" or "stinkdamp"?

4. Quick, name the four agents of erosion. (No, not war, pestilence, famine and death.)

5. Where are most mountains?

6. Maria are the dark "seas" of the Moon. What two other heavenly bodies have them?

7. Which of these does not belong: gault, gannister, gyttja, geest?

8. Where must you watch out for gendarmes?

9. Fly due south from Corpus Christi. What's the next lithospheric plate?

10. What do these have in common: hessonite, tsavorite, rhodolite, demantoid?

11. Which of these does not belong: yardang, reg, karrenfeld, dune?

12. Which of these is good for nickel: kernite, kutnahorite, kullerudite, kieserite?

13. What do these have in common: breadcrust, spindle, cowpat, ribbon?

14. Which of these has no middle: Silurian, Devonian, Mississippian, Pennsylvanian?

15. Which of these does not belong: Bohemian ruby, China stone, Herkimer diamond, Scotch pebble?

16. What is it about these names: Bouma, Wilson, Hale, Milankovich?

17. What are these: mantle, sulcus, pedicle, lopophore?

18. Which impact crater is largest: Gusev, Manson, Popigai, Ries?

19. What comes next: P, S, L . . . ?

20. Which does not belong: lechatelierite, majorite, maskelynite, amber?

Answers on Monday.

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