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 Lincoln jokingly describe, in Act 2, Scene 5, the act of defending a murder suspect?
(a) "Doing what I can to obstruct the orderly processes of justice."
(b) "Whipping such a blizzard of words as to keep justice slipping and sliding."
(c) "Spinning doubt as thick as a black widow's web."
(d) "Tossing enough hot potatos to keep a judge from telling which one is rotten."

2. What advice does Josh Speed give Lincoln regarding his mental health?
(a) He thinks a good night's sleep will work wonders.
(b) He suggests Lincoln see a doctor.
(c) He suggests a lobotomy.
(d) He prescribes anti-depressants.

3. How much would Lincoln be paid as a member of the legislature?
(a) Nothing, it's a volunteer job.
(b) $2.50 a day.
(c) $5 a day.
(d) $3 a day.

4. What is the setting of the first scene of Abe Lincoln in Illinois?
(a) A riverboat on the mighty Mississippi.
(b) A cabin near New Salem, Illionois, which belongs to Lincoln's teacher.
(c) A log cabin in the woods of Missouri.
(d) A tavern in Springfield.

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

Short Answer Questions

1. What is the local gossip in New Salem about Ann Rutledge?

2. Who is President during the time represented in Act 2, Scene 4?

3. What is Josh Speed's request to the Greens as he departs at the end of Act 1, Scene 3?

4. In Act 2, Scene 4, who arrives unexpectedly at Lincoln's office to visit?

5. What does Lincoln's teacher suggest Lincoln do to improve his life?

Short Essay Questions

1. 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?

2. Lincoln is reluctant to consider running for State Assembly. What is his main objection?

3. Is Lincoln liked or disliked in the community of New Salem, according to his teacher in Act 1, Scene 1?

4. Why does Lincoln decide to run for office after talking to Ann, at the end of Act 1, Scene 2? Did she encourage him?

5. Does Lincoln appear to be emotionally stable just after he announces the death of Ann Rutledge?

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

7. At the beginning of Act 2, Scene 5, Elizabeth Edwards is responding to a bit of news which surprises her--even though she might have seen it coming. What is the news and who brought it to her attention?

8. In Act 2, Scene 5, Elizabeth Edwards and her sister, Mary Todd, have a spirited discussion about Abraham Lincoln and whether he would be a good match for Mary Todd. What does their argument tell the audience about the sisters' personalities?

9. Does Lincoln's teacher agree or disagree with the argument Webster makes for maintaining the Union in the speech Lincoln reads in the first scene of the play?

10. In Act 2, Scene 4, Lincoln has a law clerk who is something of a firebrand--he believes deeply in abolition and tries to get Lincoln involved in the public debate. What is Lincoln's response?

(see the answer keys)

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