The American Language 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. Mencken describes the American language as having a "democratic enmity" to all what, in the beginning of Chapter 6.1?
(a) Grammatical rules.
(b) Individualism.
(c) Authority.
(d) Regulation.

2. Where was the broad "a" principally established prior to the Civil War?
(a) The Southeast.
(b) New England.
(c) The Midwest.
(d) California.

3. How do the English pronounce the first syllable in "lieutenant"?
(a) Yeift.
(b) Loo.
(c) Left.
(d) Lee-oo.

4. According to the tale spread by William Gifford, what language was supposed to be substituted for English during the Revolutionary War?
(a) Latin.
(b) Hebrew.
(c) French.
(d) Spanish.

5. To what phrase did Benjamin Franklin, Noah Webster, and Robert Southey object as a base Americanism, as discussed in Chapter 2.3?
(a) Free endorsement.
(b) To process.
(c) To indulge.
(d) To advocate.

Short Answer Questions

1. According to Mencken, which title is subject to the greatest divergence in usage?

2. What does Mencken state is neglected by those who are professional trained to investigate it?

3. According to Mencken, the name of what game puzzles etymologists?

4. Which European language has exerted the most influence on the American language?

5. What word did the editor of the Westminster Gazette substitute for the incomprehensible dash in the mangled Americanism of Rupert Brooke?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is significant about the divergent styles of naming of streets in America and England?

2. For what reason did the early Americans wish to distinguish their language from that of the English?

3. What is Mencken's chief critique of the classifications that he reports in Chapter 1.6?

4. In general, what is the relationship between foreign names for locations and American pronunciations?

5. What characterizes the favorite slang phrases of the American soldier in World War I, according to Mencken?

6. As explained in Chapter 6.4, why are Americans more conceding to foreign loan-words than the English are?

7. Aside from numbering and lettering, what is the principal way in which American and English styles of naming streets are divergent?

8. What two factors are discussed in Chapter 9.5 as contributing to Mencken's distress in the "movement toward the identity in form" and why?

9. How does Mencken describe the distinction between colloquialisms and idiomatic expressions that are generally accepted and those that are not? What example does he use to explain this distinction?

10. How is the advance of American spelling characterized in Chapter 8.3?

(see the answer keys)

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