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. Who does Wenceslas tell Lisbeth has purchased his group?

2. How long has Monsieur Crevel been a widower?

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

4. According to the narrator, what is the fundamental feature of Lisbeth's character?

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

Short Essay Questions

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

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

3. 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?

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

5. 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?

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

7. How does Lisbeth meet Wenceslas in the first place? What is the relationship between them after this first meeting?

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

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

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

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

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?

Essay Topic 2

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 3

What is the importance of setting in Cousin Bette? Where do the significant scenes take place? In what time period is the novel set? Why is this significant?

(see the answer keys)

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