The Eagle of the Ninth Short Essay - Answer Key

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1. Describe Marcus Flavius Aquila.

Marcus is a dark, thin and arrogant Roman with a brand between his brows, showing he has achieved the Raven degree of Mithras.

2. What has happened to Marcus's family?

His father was a Centurion before him and disappeared with the ninth legion. Marcus's mother died about a year later, and the boy was sent to live with his uncle, a greedy Roman official who sold the family farm.

3. What does Quintus Hilarion, the Pilus Prior Centurion tell Marcus, who is replacing him?

To beware of the Druids. Although the organized priesthood was destroyed almost 60 years ago, stray holy men still wander the forests. Whenever one appears, he seems to rouse the local villagers and hunters to rebellion. Quintus cautions that the time is ripe for such an uprising, after two years of bad harvests.

4. What does Marcus consider his true home and why?

The Legion is the only true home that Marcus has, the only place he feels he really belongs. After the death of his parents and the sale of the family farm in Etruria, Marcus never truly felt comfortable at his uncle's home in Rome.

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