The Confessions of Nat Turner 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. According to Nat, Hark's name might be short for what?
(a) Hank.
(b) Hercules.
(c) Hector.
(d) Harken.

2. What word did Cobb ask Nat to spell?
(a) Cobb.
(b) Dog.
(c) Nat.
(d) Cat.

3. What does Gray say was the "only principle of restraint" for the band of slaves?
(a) Fear of taking too much time, impeding their escape to the north.
(b) Apprehension for their personal safety.
(c) Worry that the alarm would be raised too soon.
(d) Fear of being caught.

4. Nat tells Gray of an event that "laid the groundwork" for his later actions, including the insurrection. What was that event?
(a) As a child, relating events that had happened before his birth.
(b) Stealing small items with a group of childhood friends.
(c) Being sold to a new master.
(d) Wanting to train for the priesthood.

5. Who is Gray?
(a) A friend of Nat's late master.
(b) A friend of Nat's .
(c) An attorney.
(d) The Mayor.

Short Answer Questions

1. What does Nat wonder about after sentencing?

2. Which Biblical prophet did Nat feel "spoke" to him most clearly about the rebellion?

3. How does Gray say Nat will be punished?

4. How does Gray say the "band" resisted when the white people finally caught up to them?

5. What does Gray tell Nat about the Bible, when he cannot bring one to Nat?

Short Essay Questions

1. When Judge Cobb first appears in the book, Nat describes his face as "blighted, ravaged by sorrow." When considering his eventual killing spree, Nat decides to spare Cobb. Why might he have done that?

2. Gray tries to calm the fears of the people in Southampton County with his statement that's included in the Introduction. Yet he says "if Nat's statements can be relied upon." Why would he include a statement like this when he's trying to calm people?

3. Prejudice is "an unfavorable opinion or feeling formed beforehand or without knowledge, thought or reason". ( Do you think Gray displays prejudice toward Nat? Toward blacks in general? How? List specific examples from the Introduction.

4. Gray says that all the other insurgents who were examined tried to exculpate themselves. What does that mean? And why Nat didn't do it?

5. When Gray addresses the court, he blames "pure Negro cowardice" as a partial reason for the rebellion's failure, but then later in that same paragraph, Gray describes devoted slaves fighting "as bravely as any man" against Nat and his band. Why is he saying these things? Is he trying to confuse the justices?

6. In Part 1, when Nat is cleaning rabbits with Hark and Jeremiah Cobb stops to talk after getting a drink, Nat becomes nervous when he feels Cobb's question needs an answer. Nat doesn't want to give away a hint of what he's planning, but there's something else that pulls him in two directions when he considers whether to answer Cobb or not. Describe why Nat is so worried.

7. In Part 1, Nat says "a white man's discomfiture, observed on the sly, has always been a Negro's richest delight." Is this true? If so, why? If not, why would Nat think such a thing? Either way, what does that quote suggest about Nat?

8. Nat tells Gray in the Introduction, "I don't think you understand about this business and I don't know but whether it's too late to make it all plain". If Gray took down what Nat said and is reading it back to him, why would Nat think Gray didn't understand?

9. In Part 1, Gray reads back Nat's account of the killings, and Nat yells at him to stop. Why did Nat say that? Did he feel remorse? Nat says, "We done what had to be done!" Was he was talking about his "visions" and what they told him, or what Nat, personally, felt needed to be done?

10. At the end of the introduction, it states that the confession was read to Nat, and when asked if he had anything further to say, he said no. The rebellion was a complicated affair that involved planning. Why do you think Nat declined to say anything further?

(see the answer keys)

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