A Short History of Nearly Everything Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

Bill Bryson
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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. Halley believed that once scientists figured out the distance from the sun to the Earth, they could then calculate what?
(a) Distances to distant stars.
(b) Weight of Earth.
(c) Distances to other planets.
(d) Weight of the sun.

2. Pluto is the first planet to be discovered by an:
(a) Australian.
(b) American.
(c) Austrian.
(d) Argentine.

3. What is the average distance between asteroids found in the inner solar system between Mars and Jupiter?
(a) Ten billion miles.
(b) A million miles.
(c) Ten thousand miles.
(d) A thousand miles.

4. Our universe is at least how many light-years wide?
(a) 5 trillion.
(b) 350 trillion.
(c) 50 million trillions.
(d) 100 billion.

5. Scientists eventually figured out that certain unusual rocks near Manson, Iowa, were not because of ancient volcanic activity as they first surmised, but the result of what?
(a) A dynamite explosion.
(b) A lightning storm.
(c) A mini ice age.
(d) A huge meteor.

Short Answer Questions

1. Had the universe formed just slightly differently:

2. James Hutton believed that the natural forces forming the geology of Earth are:

3. About how many stars are visible to the naked eye from Earth?

4. Which of the following is NOT a quark "flavor?"

5. What components were central to the apparatus that Henry Cavendish used to determine the density of Earth?

Short Essay Questions

1. What happened when, in 1896, Henri Becquerel accidentally left a packet of uranium salts on top of a wrapped photographic plate?

2. How does the Superstring Theory explain quarks?

3. Describe inner solar system asteroids.

4. Describe Albert Einstein before he became well known in the scientific community.

5. Who is the Reverend Robert Evans, and what is he known for?

6. Why does Bryson consider Pluto to be an oddity?

7. Summarize what the author says about why it took so long to discover that Pluto has a moon.

8. Describe what happened when astronomer Edmond Halley asked Sir Isaac Newton for mathematical help.

9. Describe what the Archbishop James Usser and the Reverend William Buckland concluded regarding the age of Earth.

10. What happened when Max Planck was advised to study math instead of physics?

(see the answer keys)

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