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US Bill Of Rights Trivia Quiz Questions With Answers

Free long printable trivia quiz with answers about the US Bill of Rights

 

What is the US Bill of Rights?
A: The Bill of Rights in the United States is the first ten amendments to the United States Constitution.

The Bill of Rights amendments add what to the Constitution?
A: Specific guarantees of personal freedoms and rights, clear limitations on the government's power in judicial and other proceedings, and explicit declarations that all powers not specifically delegated to Congress by the Constitution are reserved for the states or the people.

The concepts codified in these amendments are built upon those found in several earlier documents, including what?
A: The Virginia Declaration of Rights and the English Bill of Rights, along with earlier documents such as Magna Carta (1215).

In practice, the amendments had little impact on judgments by the courts for how long?
A: For the first 150 years after ratification.

Since the early 20th century both federal and state courts have used the Fourteenth Amendment to do what?
A: To apply portions of the Bill of Rights to state and local governments.

The process is known as what?
A: Incorporation.

Prior to the ratification and implementation of the United States Constitution, the thirteen sovereign states followed what?
A: The Articles of Confederation, created by the Second Continental Congress and ratified in 1781.

However, the national government that operated under the Articles of Confederation was too weak to adequately regulate what?
A: The various conflicts that arose between the states.

The Philadelphia Convention set out to correct weaknesses of the Articles that had been apparent even before what?
A: The American Revolutionary War had been concluded.

When did the convention take place?
A: From May 14 to September 17, 1787.

Where did it take place?
A: In Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The Convention was purportedly intended only to do what?
A: To revise the Articles.

The intention of many of its proponents, chief among them James Madison of Virginia and Alexander Hamilton of New York, was to create what?
A: A new government rather than fix the existing one.

The convention convened in the Pennsylvania State House, and who was unanimously elected as president of the convention?
A: George Washington of Virginia.

How many delegates drafted the Constitution?
A: 55.

The 55 delegates who drafted the Constitution are among the men known as what?
A: The Founding Fathers of the new nation.

Thomas Jefferson, who was Minister to France during the convention, characterized the delegates as a what?
A: An assembly of "demi-gods."

Rhode Island refused to do what?
A: Send delegates to the convention.

Author David O. Stewart characterizes the omission of a Bill of Rights in the original Constitution as a what?
A: "A political blunder of the first magnitude" while historian Jack N. Rakove calls it "the one serious miscalculation the framers made as they looked ahead to the struggle over ratification".

How many delegates signed the finalized Constitution?
A: Thirty-nine.

How many delegates left before it was completed?
A: Thirteen.

What did three who remained at the convention until the end do?
A: They refused to sign it: Mason, Gerry, and Edmund Randolph of Virginia.

Following the Philadelphia Convention, some leading revolutionary figures such as Patrick Henry, Samuel Adams, and Richard Henry Lee publicly opposed the new frame of government, a position known as what?
A: "Anti-Federalism".

Supporters of the Constitution, known as Federalists, opposed a bill of rights for much of the ratification period, in part due to what?
A: The procedural uncertainties it would create.

Madison argued against such an inclusion, suggesting what?
A: That state governments were sufficient guarantors of personal liberty.

Hamilton opposed a bill of rights in The Federalist No. 84, stating what?
A: That "the constitution is itself in every rational sense, and to every useful purpose, a bill of rights."

In December 1787 and January 1788, what five states ratified the Constitution with relative ease?
A: Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Georgia, and Connecticut.

In contrast to its predecessors, the Massachusetts convention was angry and contentious, at one point erupting into a fistfight between whom?
A: Federalist delegate Francis Dana and Anti-Federalist Elbridge Gerry when the latter was not allowed to speak.

The impasse was resolved only when revolutionary heroes and leading Anti-Federalists Samuel Adams and John Hancock agreed to what?
A: Ratification on the condition that the convention also propose amendments.

A minority of the Constitution's critics, such as Maryland's Luther Martin, continued to what?
A: Oppose ratification.

When would the new Constitution become operational?
A: When ratified by at least nine states.

Only then would it replace the existing government under the what?
A: Articles of Confederation and would apply only to those states that ratified it.

Following contentious battles in several states, when did the proposed Constitution reach that nine-state ratification plateau?
A: In June 1788.

On September 13, 1788, the Articles of Confederation Congress certified what?
A: That the new Constitution had been ratified by more than enough states.

It also directed the new government to meet in New York City on the first Wednesday in March the following year.
On March 4, 1789, the new frame of government came into force with how many of the thirteen states participating?

A: Eleven.
George Washington had fourteen handwritten copies of the Bill of Rights made, one for Congress and one for whom?

A: Each of the original thirteen states.
What happened to the copies for Georgia, Maryland, New York, and Pennsylvania?

A: They went missing.
The New York copy is thought to have been what?

A: Destroyed in a fire.
Two unidentified copies of the missing four (thought to be the Georgia and Maryland copies) survive; one is in the National Archives, and the other is where?
A: In the New York Public Library.

North Carolina's copy was stolen from the State Capitol by whom?
A: By a Union soldier following the Civil War.

When was it recovered?
A: In 2003, in an FBI sting operation.

Where has the copy retained by the First Congress has been on display (along with the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence)?
A: In the Rotunda for the Charters of Freedom room at the National Archives Building in Washington, D.C. since December 13, 1952.

After fifty years on display, signs of deterioration in the casing were noted, while the documents themselves appeared what?
A: To be well preserved.

Accordingly, when was the casing updated and the Rotunda rededicated?
A: On September 17, 2003.

In 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt declared December 15 to be what?
A: The Bill of Rights Day, commemorating the 150th anniversary of the ratification of the Bill of Rights.

In 1991, the Virginia copy of the Bill of Rights toured the country in honor of its what?
A: Bicentennial, visiting the capitals of all fifty states.


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