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. What does Lisbeth surmise as the cause of her admirer's failed suicide attempt?

2. How does Wenceslas discover the identity of the person who arranges for his release from prison?

3. How much older is the Baroness than her cousin Bette?

4. How many suitors has Lisbeth rejected?

5. With what major event do the beginnings of Monsieur Hulot's infidelities coincide?

Short Essay Questions

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

2. Describe Lisbeth. How old is she? How does she dress? How does this affect her social standing in comparison to her cousin, the Baroness?

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

4. What does Lisbeth advise Wenceslas to do after the visit from Monsieur Grasset and what reason does she give for this? What does she promise to do?

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

6. Who is Valerie Marneffe's father? Why does she inherit nothing upon his death?

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

8. Where does the Baron go after he finds the opera to be closed? What does he learn when he arrives there?

9. With whom does Lisbeth discuss the Baron's fascination with Valerie Marneffe? According to Lisbeth, what has Baron Hulot done to win her favor?

10. 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?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What elements of Cousin Bette characterize this work as a Realist novel? How does this work exemplify literary realism? Give two specific examples from the text.

Essay Topic 2

Morality is a significant theme in Cousin Bette. What message does the novel convey about morality? Use specific examples from the text to support your answer.

Essay Topic 3

Throughout the novel, the author uses several objects for symbolic purposes. Choose two examples of symbols from the text and discuss their significance. How do these symbols relate to the themes and message of Cousin Bette?

(see the answer keys)

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