Billy Budd 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. What causes Billy to lose his voice on occasion?
(a) Fear.
(b) Illness.
(c) An odd genetic malfunction.
(d) Stress.

2. How is discipline maintained on the Bellipotent?
(a) Strictly, but with fair consideration to the welfare of the sailors.
(b) In a relaxed fashion, almost too relaxed for Admiral Nelson.
(c) With unnecessary cruelty.
(d) Through a monetary system of rewards and penalties.

3. Which character is deceived by Squeak's lies?
(a) Claggart.
(b) Captain Vere.
(c) Billy.
(d) Lieutenant Ratcliffe.

4. What does another sailor try to give Billy in chapter 14?
(a) A package of dates.
(b) Money.
(c) Papers.
(d) The wrong rope.

5. What is Captain Vere's favorite hobby?
(a) Sailing.
(b) Shuffleboard.
(c) Chess.
(d) Reading.

Short Answer Questions

1. What is Captain Vere's nickname?

2. Which character is known for his simplicity and naiveté?

3. What is a "cat's paw"?

4. Which famous character does the Victory's quarterdeck decoration commemorate?

5. Which character is known for his malicious envy?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe Billy Budd.

2. How does Billy's threat of physical force when confronted by the afterguardsman foreshadow his downfall?

3. What incident is the catalyst for Billy's demise?

4. What changes the face of naval warfare in the 18th century?

5. Describe Captain Vere.

6. How does Melville contrast Billy and Claggart's characters?

7. What is Billy's one flaw?

8. Which one of the seven deadly sins drives Claggart to destroy Billy?

9. How does deception destroy both Claggart and Billy?

10. How does Billy's innocence affect his ability to react to the afterguardsman's proposal?

(see the answer keys)

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