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Marco Polo Quiz
by Staff
This famous adventurer might be one of the few to have actually earned his legendary reputation. How much do you know about Marco Polo?

In which country was Marco Polo born?

  • England
  • Spain
  • Italy

True or False: Polo was born into an impoverished family.

  • true
  • false

When Marco's father returned from Asia, what did he do?

  • He retired.
  • He immediately began planning a return trip.
  • He bought a huge trading ship.

How old was Marco when he met his father and uncle?

  • 8
  • 15
  • 18

In which century did Marco Polo travel the world?

  • 13th century
  • 14th century
  • 15th century

What did Kublai Khan ask Marco's father to bring when he returned to the Mongol Empire a second time?

  • 100 Christian priests
  • 100 virgins
  • 100 gallons of pure olive oil

With whom did Marco travel to meet Kublai Khan?

  • his father
  • his father and uncle
  • his father and two cousins

How much time did the group plan to spend on this second trip to see the Khan?

  • a few weeks
  • six years
  • a decade

How many priests did the group take with them to see the Khan?

  • 100
  • 14
  • 2

About how long did Marco spend living in Asia and the Mongol Empire?

  • about four years
  • about 11 years
  • about 17 years

Including travel time, how long did the Polos spend on their journey to the Mongol Empire and back?

  • 19 years
  • 24 years
  • 27 years

How many languages did Marco learn while serving in the Khan's empire?

  • 2
  • 3
  • 4

Why did the Khan at first refuse to allow the Polos to leave his empire?

  • He didn't want to seem powerless to stop them.
  • He needed their knowledge.
  • He was in love with Marco's uncle.

When did Marco write his famous book "The Travels of Marco Polo?"

  • in prison
  • on his deathbed
  • as he was returning home from Asia

Why did Marco wind up in prison after returning from his travels?

  • People suspected he stole the riches he brought home.
  • Venice was at war.
  • He was considered a traitor.

True or False: When they finally returned home to Italy, the Polos were nearly penniless because they'd been robbed many times.

  • true
  • false

What did Marco's "paiza" allow him to do?

  • travel freely within the Mongol empire
  • buy any supplies that he needed
  • behead enemies on sight

In what capacity did Polo serve the Khan?

  • tax collector
  • advisor
  • both

True or False: Marco became a governor of a Chinese city.

  • true
  • false

How did the Khan treat Marco's father and uncle?

  • He gave them important positions.
  • He was wary of them.
  • He shunned them while embracing Marco.

What was the name of the initial manuscript that Polo created to document his travel tales?

  • "My Life"
  • "Description of the World"
  • "My Travels"

True or False: Marco's book offers amazing insights into his inner thoughts and beliefs.

  • true
  • false

Polo's book introduced many Europeans to what?

  • paper money
  • pasta
  • steam engines

True or False: Christopher Columbus used Polo's text as a guidebook of sort for his own travels.

  • true
  • false

How many people accompanied the Polos on their trip home to Italy?

  • two dozen
  • about 75
  • hundreds

How many people survived the trip to Persia and then Italy?

  • 3
  • 18
  • 76

What fact complicated the lives of the Polos when they returned?

  • They forgot their native language.
  • They were branded outsiders.
  • Their homes had been razed.

Upon Polo's return, why did few travelers set out to see the sights he reported?

  • They didn't believe him.
  • It was too dangerous.
  • His book wasn't published until 10 years later.

As he was dying, what did Polo say in response to people who said he made up most of the stories of his travels?

  • "I have not told half of what I saw."
  • "Words will never hurt me."
  • "I have not yet begun to fight."

Most historians say what about Polo's travel tales?

  • They were mostly true.
  • There were mostly exaggerated.
  • They were half-true, half false.