Abe Lincoln in Illinois Test | Final 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. What is Mary Todd Lincoln's response to her husband's suggestion that she go home?
(a) She becomes hysterical and says her husband hates her.
(b) She turns silently and leaves the room.
(c) She bursts into tears and slaps him.
(d) She laughs and insists she's staying until the bitter end.

2. How does Lincoln frequently begin a sentence after his election?
(a) "Whatever..."
(b) "If I live..."
(c) "As I live and breath..."
(d) "Funnily enough..."

3. When Lincoln leaves the parlor for a moment, how does one of his visitors in Act 3, Scene 9 describe him?
(a) One of the smoothest, slickest politicians that ever hoodwinked a yokel mob.
(b) One of the most astute politicians who ever emerged from a backwoods log cabin.
(c) A demagogue who could play the ringmaster in a Barnum and Bailey Circus.
(d) A lawyer as crooked as a dog's hind leg.

4. Who is Lincoln's main rival for the presidency?
(a) Andrew Jackson.
(b) Stephen Douglas.
(c) Uriah Heep.
(d) William Herndon.

5. What is the essential element Lincoln's party is seeking in a presidential candidate when they ask him to run?
(a) The ability to get elected.
(b) A strong military policy.
(c) An anti-slavery attitude.
(d) A willingness to raise taxes.

Short Answer Questions

1. How does Mary Todd describe her part in the break-up of the engagement to Lincoln?

2. What does Seth Gale's wife want for her sick son, besides the help of a doctor?

3. Mary Todd enters Act 2, Scene 10 while Lincoln is talking with his sons and objects to something the oldest son is doing. What is it?

4. What is it about the Gale family's plans that seems most important to Lincoln?

5. What plans are afoot in South Carolina in case of a Lincoln victory?

Short Essay Questions

1. On Election Day, as the Lincolns wait for voting results, Mary becomes increasingly anxious. Finally, Lincoln suggests she go home to wait. She responds with a surprising outburst. What does she say and why does she feel so strongly?

2. In their debate, Lincoln compares Douglas to a woman watching her husband fight for his life with a bear. When asked by her husband for an encouraging word, the woman says, "Go husband. Go bear." What was Lincoln saying about Douglas in that comparison?

3. Lincoln, says Douglas in the debate, is stirring up rebellion against authority. What is the danger that Douglas foresees? And what is the solution he proposes?

4. In Act 2, Scene 7, it has been two years since Lincoln broke off his engagement. He has been drifting since then, but has returned to New Salem in time to meet his old friend, Seth Gale. The Gale family is heading west, to Oregon. Gale has had a hard journey and now his young son is suffering from swamp fever. What does he want from Lincoln at this time?

5. Lincoln tells Mary Todd that his encounter with Seth Gale a few days earlier was the spur that brought him to her door. What was the decision Lincoln made while visiting with Gale and how does the playwright convey Lincoln's ambivalence about that decision?

6. The cheering crowd chants for Lincoln to make a speech from the back of the railroad car. He begins by naming the problems facing the nation. But he finishes on a note of hope. What outcome is Lincoln hoping to achieve?

7. Stephen Douglas takes the position that "each state should mind its own business," says Lincoln in the debate. It might seem like the safer course, he argues, but there is a danger to following that advice. What is the danger that Lincoln foresees?

8. A few days after meeting Seth Gale, Abe Lincoln arrives at the home of Mary Todd. She is still single and Abe plans to ask her, again, to marry him. Does the fact that Mary is still single, two years after the broken engagement to Lincoln, indicate anything about her character? Support your answer with your interpretation of the text, both from Act 2, Scene 8 and from earlier episodes in the play.

9. In Act 3, Scene 10, which takes place in the Lincolns' home, it is clear that the Lincolns' marriage is not happy, or at the least, has problems. Thus far, the play has made clear Mary's part in creating problems. In this scene, the playwright uses a cigar to show that Lincoln isn't an innocent victim in the matter of the marriage. How does the cigar reveal one of Lincoln's faults?

10. Lincoln has an outburst of his own, in response to Mary. What are his complaints against her?

(see the answer keys)

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