Cousin Bette: Part One of Poor Relations Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. For how long does Monsieur Crevel estimate that the Baroness will remain beautiful?

2. To whom is Lisbeth apprenticed by the Baron?

3. How long had Lisbeth's beau been working on the figurine she shows to Hortense?

4. What year does the novel take place?

5. What had been Monsieur Crevel's profession?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does the Baroness summon Monsieur Crevel? Which of Monsieur Crevel's actions have affected the Baroness? Why has he acted this way?

2. Who is the first character introduced in the novel? What information is surmised about his age? How is this information revealed?

3. Whom does Wenceslas see when he returns home? Whom does he say has purchased his bronze group and offered him work?

4. Who arranges for Wenceslas to be released from prison? How does Wenceslas find out this information?

5. What proof does Lisbeth provide of the existence of her admirer? What does she receive from Hortense in exchange for this information?

6. After Wenceslas sells his bronze group, who comes to visit Lisbeth at her flat? What is the purpose of this visit?

7. Whom does Hortense decide to marry? What is the relationship between Hortense's intended and Lisbeth? Why does Baron Hulot tell her that Cousin Bette will not be an obstacle to Hortense's intended marriage?

8. What solution does Monsieur Crevel propose to the Baroness for the problem of Hortense's dowry? What other options does he tell her she has available to her?

9. How does Lisbeth describe her relationship with Wenceslas to Valerie Marneffe? What proof of his connection to Hortense does Valerie show to Lisbeth?

10. What information about Wenceslas' professional life does Valerie give to Lisbeth? What information about Wenceslas' personal life does she give Lisbeth? How does Lisbeth react to this news?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Money has a significant role throughout Cousin Bette. Give three examples from the novel in which money significantly alters the plot of the novel and directly affects the protagonist. How is money a characteristic of the Realist novel?

Essay Topic 2

At the end of the first part of Cousin Bette, the narrator compares the narrative to a classical tragedy. Use specific examples from the text to discuss which elements of classical tragedy are found in the novel and which elements are missing. In your opinion, can Cousin Bette be classified as a tragedy? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

Foreshadowing is an important device employed in Cousin Bette. How does the author employ this device? What purpose does it serve? Use three specific examples from the text.

(see the answer keys)

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