10 most difficult etymology riddles A list of ten (out of 27) etymology related questions that are the most often answered incorrectly Etymology quiz What nationality was Martin Van Buren?American. Martin Van Buren was the eighth president of the United States. 'Van' suggests Dutch origin of his surname, but the capitalized form indicates anglicised version - like Eddie Van Halen (as opposite to Dutch lower-case Vincent van Gogh).very hard 28% DutchDutch56%AmericanAmerican28%RussianRussian4%GermanGerman11%Created by: globalquiz.org. Statistics based on 5009 answers in 2 languages »Netherlands riddles » What did first Spanish conquerors expect to find in Argentina?Silver. The country name is derived from the Latin argentum (silver - Ag). La Plata Basin (literally "Silver river") does not have any sources of silver, but the first Spaniards arrived to the area following rumors of the existence of silver mountains.very hard 30% goldgold39%silversilver30%diamondsdiamonds13%coffeecoffee15%Created by: Kasia. Statistics based on 4486 answers in 4 languages »geographical names riddles » What is the meaning of the Italian word "Ferrari"?Smith. "Ferrari" is the third most common surname in Italy. The word has the same root as Italian "ferro" (iron) or Latin "ferrum" (thus, Fe for iron).very hard 30% speedyspeedy14%furiousfurious11%racehorseracehorse43%SmithSmith30%Created by: globalquiz.org. Statistics based on 7568 answers in 4 languages »surnames riddles » Where does English horn (cor anglais) come from?Breslau. The instrument was created by the Weigel family about 1720. Since it resembled the horns played by angels in religious images, it was called engellisches Horn, meaning angelic horn. But engellisch also meant English.very hard 36% LondonLondon20%ExeterExeter28%ParisParis14%BreslauBreslau36%Created by: Kasia. Statistics based on 7802 answers in 2 languages »musical instruments riddles » Which European capital's name literally means "black pool"?Dublin. The Dubhlinn ("black pool") was a small lake used to moor ships and was connected to the River Liffey. This lake was covered during the early 18th century as the city grew.very hard 37% AmsterdamAmsterdam21%DublinDublin37%MadridMadrid5%OsloOslo34%Created by: globalquiz.org. Statistics based on 9503 answers in 2 languages »city names riddles » What does the name Singapore mean?City of Lions. The English name of Singapore is derived from the Malay word Singapura (lit. Lion City), hence the customary reference to the nation as the Lion City. Lions probably never lived there; the beast seen by Sang Nila Utama, who founded and named ancient Singapore, was most likely a tiger.hard 40% City of BirdsCity of Birds16%City of MonkeysCity of Monkeys26%City of LionsCity of Lions40%City of ElephantsCity of Elephants15%Created by: globalquiz.org. Statistics based on 10426 answers in 2 languages »cities of Asia riddles » How did Spam become the synonym of unwanted email?Through Monty Python sketch. Spam (shortened from spiced ham) is a canned precooked meat product made and trademarked by the Hormel Foods Corporation, first introduced in 1937. It got popular in the UK during WW2. The name has been given to electronic spam through a Monty Python sketch, in which Spam was portrayed as ubiquitous and inescapable.hard 40% through Monty Python sketchthrough Monty Python sketch40%acronym of Sender Probably A Machineacronym of Sender Probably A Machine25%acronym of Still Pending Another Mailacronym of Still Pending Another Mail13%first spammy emails were meat advertsfirst spammy emails were meat adverts20%Created by: Andy Sealy. Statistics based on 4061 answers in 2 languages »meat riddles » Where was the world's first motorway built?In Italy. Italy was the first country in the world to start building motorways. Over 4,000 kilometers of multi-lane motorways were constructed in 1920s. The motorways were touted by Benito Mussolini in 1930, as one of the great achievements of his regime.hard 45% in Germanyin Germany36%in Francein France5%in the United Statesin the United States13%in Italyin Italy45%Created by: globalquiz.org. Statistics based on 9528 answers in 2 languages »Italy riddles » What is the origin of the name of Pennsylvania?Name of the land owner. In 1681, Charles II granted a land charter to William Penn to repay a debt of £16,000 owed to William's father, Admiral William Penn. This was one of the largest land grants to an individual in history. William Penn wanted to name the land Sylvania and was embarrassed at the name Pennsylvania chosen by the king.hard 47% Indian tribeIndian tribe20%Name of the land ownerName of the land owner47%Latin name of a plantLatin name of a plant19%Similarity to TransylvaniaSimilarity to Transylvania12%Created by: globalquiz.org. Statistics based on 12496 answers in 2 languages »history of the United States riddles » After what is the Jurassic period named?A mountain range in Switzerland. The Jurassic period is named for the Jura Mountains in between France and Switzerland, where many fossils have been found.hard 49% a type of ancient lizarda type of ancient lizard12%a mountain range in Switzerlanda mountain range in Switzerland49%a type of coal formed in that perioda type of coal formed in that period15%Latin for 'before mammals'Latin for 'before mammals'22%Created by: Roy Zhu. Statistics based on 6757 answers in 2 languages »Switzerland riddles » Play etymology quiz and see all the questions.