Thyme Trivia Questions and Answers

selective focus photograph of green leafed plant

1: What is the primary culinary herb that consists of the dried aerial parts of some members of the genus Thymus?
A: Basil
B: Thyme
C: Rosemary
D: Sage
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Thyme is the culinary herb most commonly used from the plant genus Thymus.

2: Where are thyme plants native to?
A: South America and Australia
B: North America and Japan
C: Eurasia and North Africa
D: Antarctica and Greenland
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Thyme plants are native to Eurasia and North Africa.

3: Which part of Thymus vulgaris is typically used for cooking?
A: The roots
B: The seeds
C: The leaves
D: The flowers
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: The leaves of Thymus vulgaris are commonly used in cooking.

4: Ancient Egyptians used thyme for which purpose?
A: Culinary seasoning
B: Religious offerings
C: Embalming
D: Decorating tombs
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Ancient Egyptians used thyme for embalming.

5: What did ancient Greeks use thyme for in their culture?
A: Bathing and incense
B: Food preservation
C: Dyeing fabrics
D: Jewelry making
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Ancient Greeks used thyme in their baths and burnt it as incense.

6: In European Middle Ages, what was thyme placed beneath to aid sleep?
A: Beds
B: Pillows
C: Rugs
D: Windows
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: During the European Middle Ages, thyme was placed beneath pillows to aid sleep and ward off nightmares.

7: What is the principal aromatic component of thyme?
A: Linalool
B: Carvacrol
C: Thymol
D: α-terpineol
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Thymol is the principal aromatic component of thyme.

8: Which animal is the genus name Thymallus associated with?
A: Grayling fish
B: Sea turtles
C: Wolves
D: Eagles
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Thymallus is the genus name given to the grayling fish.

9: What is the best climate for cultivating thyme?
A: Cold and wet
B: Hot and sunny
C: Shady and humid
D: Arctic and icy
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Thyme is best cultivated in a hot, sunny location with well-drained soil.

10: How is thyme commonly packaged when sold fresh?
A: In bunches of sprigs
B: As powdered leaves
C: In small jars
D: In liquid form
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Fresh thyme is commonly sold in bunches of sprigs.

11: How does thyme perform in drought conditions?
A: Poorly
B: Moderately
C: Well
D: It dies immediately
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Thyme tolerates drought well.

12: Which essential oil of thyme contains 20-54% of thymol?
A: Lavender oil
B: Eucalyptus oil
C: Oil of thyme
D: Peppermint oil
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Oil of thyme contains 20-54% thymol.

13: What characteristic does thyme retain better than many other herbs?
A: Flavor when dried
B: Color when dried
C: Texture when dried
D: Aroma when fresh
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Thyme retains its flavor on drying better than many other herbs.

14: What is one traditional use of thyme in Northern African cuisine?
A: Seasoning dried figs
B: Brewing beer
C: Scenting incense
D: Making fish sauces
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: In Northern African cuisine, thyme is used to season dried figs.

15: Which thymus species is known for its strong caraway scent?
A: Thymus vulgaris
B: Thymus pseudolanuginosus
C: Thymus herba-barona
D: Thymus serpyllum
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Thymus herba-barona (caraway thyme) is known for its strong caraway scent.

16: How is thymol used commercially outside of cooking?
A: As a perfume ingredient
B: In mouthwashes
C: As a textile dye
D: In sunscreen production
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Thymol is used as an antiseptic in mouthwashes.

17: Which variety of thyme is known to be an important nectar source plant for honeybees?
A: Golden thyme
B: Wild thyme
C: Apple thyme
D: Clove thyme
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Wild thyme is an important nectar source plant for honeybees.

18: What method can be used to remove thyme leaves from the stems?
A: Scraping with the back of a knife
B: Pressing with a spoon
C: Boiling the stems
D: Freezing
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Leaves may be removed from stems by scraping with the back of a knife.

19: Which thyme variety is best suited for use as a ground cover?
A: Lemon thyme
B: Variegated thyme
C: Woolly thyme
D: Orange thyme
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Thymus pseudolanuginosus (woolly thyme) is grown as a ground cover.

20: What type of thyme tea is known in some Levantine countries?
A: Thymus cha
B: Elocha tea
C: Seombaengnihyang-cha
D: Zwyacha
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Seombaengnihyang-cha is a type of thyme tea known in some Levantine countries.

21: Which thyme species is known to have a lemon fragrance?
A: Thymus citriodorus
B: Thymus serpyllum
C: Thymus herba-barona
D: Thymus praecox
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Thymus citriodorus is known for its lemon fragrance.

22: What is a common feature in the cultivation of thyme to maintain its quality?
A: Pruning after flowering
B: Constant watering
C: Regular fertilizing
D: Daily harvesting
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Thyme can be pruned after flowering to keep from getting woody.

23: In which Mediterranean country is thyme particularly known to offer large nectar areas for honey production?
A: Italy
B: Spain
C: Greece
D: Cyprus
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Greece is famously known for wild thyme that covers large areas, beneficial for honey production.

24: What does the condiment za’atar commonly contain, in addition to essential oils similar to thyme?
A: Cinnamon
B: Saffron
C: Marjoram
D: Nutmeg
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Za’atar contains many of the essential oils found in thyme and also includes marjoram.

25: Which species of thyme is specifically noted for its medicinal uses?
A: Lemongrass thyme
B: Garden thyme
C: Savory thyme
D: Apple thyme
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Thymus vulgaris (garden thyme) is noted for its medicinal uses.

26: What is one of the primary uses of oil of thyme before modern antibiotics?
A: Skin moisturizers
B: Medications for coughs
C: Medicate bandages
D: Hair treatments
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Before the advent of modern antibiotics, oil of thyme was used to medicate bandages.

27: What is the ideal soil type for cultivating Thymus vulgaris?
A: Clay-rich soil
B: Well-drained soil
C: Waterlogged soil
D: Alkaline soil
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Thymus vulgaris grows best in well-drained soils.

28: Which thyme plant has applications as both a culinary herb and a ground cover?
A: Thymus herba-barona
B: Thymus praecox
C: Thymus pseudolanuginosus
D: Thymus serpyllum
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Thymus herba-barona is used both as a culinary herb and a ground cover.

29: Which aromatic compound in thyme also exhibits antioxidant properties?
A: Thymol
B: Carvacrol
C: α-terpineol
D: Linalool
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: The compound carvacrol in thyme exhibits antioxidant properties.

30: What dish is commonly associated with the use of thyme in bouquet garni?
A: Pizza
B: Sausages
C: Soups and stews
D: Desserts
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Thyme is a common component in bouquet garni used in soups and stews.

31: Which essential oil is closely related to thymol in thyme?
A: p-cymene
B: Eugenol
C: Citral
D: Camphene
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: p-cymene is one of the compounds related to thymol found in thyme essential oil.

32: Why would thyme essential oil be included in mouthwash like Listerine?
A: It has calming properties
B: It has aesthetic appeal
C: It is an antiseptic
D: It refreshes fabric
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Thyme essential oil, due to thymol, is included in mouthwashes for its antiseptic properties.

33: How should thyme sprigs be stored to extend their shelf life if they are fresh?
A: In boiling water
B: Sealed in containers
C: Cool dry place
D: Frozen
Correct Answer: D
Explanation: Fresh thyme can be stored and extended for many months if carefully frozen.

34: What plant habit allows thyme to be harvested multiple times within the growing season?
A: Perennial growth
B: Biennial growth
C: Annual growth
D: Ephemeral growth
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Thyme grows as a perennial, allowing it to be harvested multiple times.

35: What culinary tradition utilizes thyme extensively in the making of herbal tisanes?
A: Chinese
B: Armenian
C: Japanese
D: Brazilian
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Armenian culinary tradition uses dried thyme in tisanes.

36: What type of aroma does fresh thyme emanate that makes it popular in Mediterranean cuisine?
A: Earthy and woody
B: Sweet and floral
C: Sharp and minty
D: Bitter and nutty
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Fresh thyme has a sharp, minty aroma that is key in Mediterranean cuisine.

37: With which type of processed food items did Romans use thyme to impart flavor?
A: Breads and pastries
B: Cheeses and liqueurs
C: Meat and vegetables
D: Pickles and ferments
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Romans used thyme to flavor cheeses and liqueurs.

38: What is one way of using fresh thyme other than culinary purposes?
A: Dyeing cloths
B: Making incense
C: Removing stains
D: Cleaning metals
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Fresher thyme can also be used in making incense.

39: In what way does thyme help as it is placed in coffins during funerals?
A: Keeps insects away
B: Assures passage into the next life
C: Softens the soil
D: Releases nourishing minerals
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Thyme was supposed to assure passage into the next life.

40: How can thyme be propagated for cultivating?
A: Seeds, cuttings, and dividing rooted sections
B: Grafting and layering
C: Only through seeds
D: Air layering
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Thyme can be propagated by seeds, cuttings, or dividing rooted sections.

41: Which part of thyme is its main source of antioxidant properties?
A: Roots
B: Leaves
C: Flowers
D: Stems
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: The leaves of thyme contain antioxidant properties.

42: Apart from culinary purposes, what major historical use did thyme have in Europe?
A: As a currency
B: As a sleep aid
C: Building material
D: Animal feed
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: In medieval Europe, thyme was placed beneath pillows to aid sleep.

43: What is one medicinal property of thymol, the main component of thyme oil?
A: Anti-inflammatory
B: Antiseptic
C: Antidepressant
D: Sedative
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Thymol is an antiseptic found in thyme oil.

44: Variegated lemon thyme emits what notable fragrance?
A: Citrus
B: Pineapple
C: Rose
D: Lavender
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Variegated lemon thyme emits a citrus fragrance.

45: Which country is notably famous for thyme honey?
A: France
B: Malta
C: Sweden
D: Canada
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Malta is especially famous for its wild thyme honey.

46: What period saw thyme being placed beneath pillows to induce courage and ward off bad dreams?
A: Roman Era
B: Middle Ages
C: Renaissance
D: Victorian Era
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: In the Middle Ages, thyme was placed beneath pillows for courage and dream protection.

47: What botanical family does thyme belong to?
A: Fabaceae
B: Asteraceae
C: Lamiaceae
D: Rosaceae
Correct Answer: C
Explanation: Thyme belongs to the Lamiaceae family.

48: Which component in thyme leaves is also found in basil?
A: Carvacrol
B: Menthol
C: Eugenol
D: Saponin
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Carvacrol is a component found in thyme leaves and also in basil.

49: How is thyme used in the condiment known as za’atar?
A: As the primary ingredient
B: Mixed with butter
C: Combined with sweets
D: Incorporated into sauces
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Thyme is a primary ingredient in the condiment za’atar.

50: Which region is believed to be the first to cultivate wild thyme?
A: The Levant
B: The Caribbean
C: The Nile Delta
D: The Amazon
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Wild thyme is believed to be first cultivated in the Levant.

51: Why can thyme be an important plant for beekeepers?
A: It improves honey storage
B: It attracts a large number of bees
C: It is easy to grow in any climate
D: It helps in producing white honey
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Thyme is an important nectar source, attracting many bees.

52: What characteristic makes thyme a good choice for walkways?
A: Low growth and resilience
B: High fragrance dispersion
C: Fast germination
D: Nutrient-rich foliage
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Low-growing thyme is ideal for walkways due to its resilience.

53: Which thyme variety is especially noted for its medicinal properties?
A: Summer thyme
B: French thyme
C: English thyme
D: Garden thyme
Correct Answer: D
Explanation: Garden thyme (Thymus vulgaris) is notable for its medicinal uses.

54: What dry form of thyme retains its flavor better than other herbs?
A: Thyme roots
B: Thyme leaves
C: Thyme oil
D: Thyme seeds
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Thyme leaves retain their flavor better when dried compared to other herbs.

55: What is the common name given to Thymus praecox, cultivated as an ornamental plant?
A: Wild thyme
B: Lemon thyme
C: Lime thyme
D: Caraway thyme
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Thymus praecox is commonly known as wild thyme and cultivated as an ornamental plant.

56: What type of thyme is alternatively known as creeping thyme?
A: Thymus vulgaris
B: Thymus serpyllum
C: Thymus pseudolanuginosus
D: Thymus herba-barona
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Thymus serpyllum is also known as creeping thyme.

57: What gives Thymus herba-barona its strong fragrance?
A: Thymol
B: Carvone
C: Eugenol
D: Cineole
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Thymus herba-barona has a strong fragrance due to the presence of carvone.

58: Which thyme variety is noted for covering rocky soils beneficial for butterfly larvae?
A: French thyme
B: Creeping thyme
C: Lemon thyme
D: Summer thyme
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Creeping thyme (Thymus serpyllum) covers rocky soils and is important for butterfly larvae.

59: What significant contribution did Carl Linnaeus make to the nomenclature of thyme?
A: Describing grayling as T. thymallus
B: Naming thyme in honor of Greek mythology
C: Classifying thyme in the Rosaceae family
D: Discovering thyme’s antiseptic properties
Correct Answer: A
Explanation: Carl Linnaeus described the grayling fish as T. thymallus due to its faint thyme smell.

60: In what form can thyme be most conveniently stored for long periods?
A: Refrigerated as fresh sprigs
B: Dried and kept in sealed containers
C: Blended into liquids
D: Steamed and bottled
Correct Answer: B
Explanation: Dried thyme can be stored for long periods in sealed containers, retaining its flavor.

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