Abe Lincoln in Illinois Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

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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. How does Mary Todd characterize the life her sister and brother-in-law have chosen?
(a) She recognizes their lives are adventurous, with no boundaries.
(b) She says they live fearful lives, surrounded by fences designed to keep the world at arm's length.
(c) She calls them reckless and irresponsible because they have invested in too many rental properties.
(d) She says they live in a house with fences, not to keep others out, but to keep themselves from escaping their own narrow lives.

2. What is Lincoln's response to a poem he reads regarding life and death?
(a) He is inspired to write his own poetry: "I've got a thought, Teacher, give me a pencil."
(b) It depresses him: "Life is sure 'nuff short, why think about death?"
(c) He finds it strange: "I don't get the meaning of it, at all."
(d) He likes it: "It sure is good...it's fine!

3. According to Nancy Green in Act 1, Scene 3, why can't Lincoln face life without a woman by his side?
(a) Because he hears voices in the night and they give him contradictory directions.
(b) Because he listens to strange voices that speak to him in church and they command him to do bad things.
(c) Because he goes into trances when under stress and needs someone to help him snap out of it.
(d) Because he hears the whispers of the dead women in his life, including his mother, and he can't understand what the whispers mean.

4. What are three things Lincoln likes about Ann Rutledge?
(a) She's smart, pretty and owns property.
(b) She's brave, pretty and a political asset.
(c) She's good-looking, sensible and wants a large family.
(d) She's sensible, brave and good-looking.

5. Does Lincoln agree, in Act 2, Scene 6, with Josh's suggestion about his mental health?
(a) Yes, he knows he is losing his mind--that's why he wants to run away.
(b) Yes, he says he's at the end of his rope and must have release from the wedding.
(c) He isn't sure, but he admits having hallucinations.
(d) No, he believes he has good reasons for his decision.

Short Answer Questions

1. What is Lincoln's initial response to the idea of running for office?

2. Who gave the speech that Lincoln's teacher has him read?

3. What does Lincoln do at the end of Act 2, Scene 6?

4. In Act 2, Scene 6, Lincoln sits at his desk on the day he is to be married. What day of the year is it?

5. What is Bowling Green's attitude toward the possibility of Lincoln marrying Ann Rutledge?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why is it that debt is always heavy on Lincoln's mind during his early adulthood, covered by Act 1, Scene 1?

2. What does Lincoln tell his friends in Act 2, Scene 4, in the discussion about his lack of political ambition and his unwillingness to speak publicly against slavery?

3. By Act 2, Scene 4, it is clear that Lincoln's friendship with Ninian Edwards (the governor's son) has advanced. What evidence does Lincoln offer of his popularity?

4. According to Act 1, Scene 3, what is the relationship of Lincoln to Nancy and Bowling Green?

5. The informal committee that came to recruit Lincoln to run for State Assembly in Act 1, Scene 2 has a larger political purpose in mind. What is it?

6. What is Webster reacting or responding to in the speech Lincoln reads in Act 1, Scene 1?

7. Act 2, Scene 5 is fairly brief, with a heated discussion between Mary Todd and her sister and brother-in-law. While the characters talk about the possibility of Mary Todd marrying Lincoln, the proposal doesn't actually take place. What purpose does the scene serve?

8. In Act 2, Scene 6, Lincoln decides to jilt Mary Todd on their wedding day. He plans to inform her in a long letter--a plan to which Josh Speed objects. Why does Speed object? In his mind, what does Lincoln's plan say about Lincoln as a man?

9. William Herndon reacts vehemently to Lincoln's denunciation of Mary Todd's ambitions for Lincoln. What does Herndon, who is somewhat drunk, tell Lincoln?

10. What is Lincoln's feeling about his career prospects as a young adult studying English in New Salem?

(see the answer keys)

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