American Sphinx Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

Joseph Ellis
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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. Jefferson's nail-making laborer's are compared to what author's characters?
(a) Emily Dickinson.
(b) Charles Dickens.
(c) Charles Manson.
(d) Jane Seymour.

2. Who does Patsy confess to loving more than her husband?
(a) Her sister.
(b) Her nanny.
(c) Her mother.
(d) Her father.

3. Besides slaves, what else does Jefferson inherit from his father-in-law's estate?
(a) A house.
(b) Animals.
(c) Debt.
(d) Land.

4. Like many Virginia aristocrats, what does Jefferson equate to land?
(a) Slaves.
(b) Growth.
(c) Struggle.
(d) Wealth.

5. What is Jefferson's refuge from troubled times?
(a) Richmond, Virginia.
(b) Monticello.
(c) Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
(d) The Continental Congress.

Short Answer Questions

1. Why is Jefferson inconsolable and cries every night for six weeks?

2. What does Jefferson argue should be eliminated from the Constitution of the new nation?

3. What is the reason the author gives for the contradiction between Jefferson's opinion of slavery and his owning of slaves?

4. How does Ellis feel about presentism?

5. Why does the audience not ask questions regarding Jefferson's slave ownership and relationship with Sally Hemings?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Ellis feel about the accusations that Jefferson has an illicit affair with his slave, Sally Hemings?

2. Why might the audience have been too polite to discuss Jefferson's slave ownership and relationship with Sally Hemings?

3. Who are the last two surviving Founding Fathers, and how are they treated?

4. Why does Jefferson make the Louisiana Purchase?

5. What impression does Jefferson's arrival in Paris give the French?

6. How does Martha Wales Jefferson die?

7. What do Polly and her mother have in common?

8. What do Patsy and Polly have in common?

9. What is ironic about Jefferson's approval of the separation of church and state?

10. Although Jefferson believes that slavery should be abolished, what does he feel about the issue of equality?

(see the answer keys)

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