The Eagle of the Ninth 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 happens as Marcus and his men are fighting to get back to the fort?

2. What does Marcus notice about the item in question #20?

3. What happened to Cradoc?

4. What is his worry concerning the Eagle in Celtic hands?

5. What does Esca show Marcus to support his position?

Short Essay Questions

1. What happens when Marcus gives Esca his freedom and what does it symbolize?

2. What does Marcus learn from Esca about Esca's family?

3. What does Esca show Marcus do illustrate the difference between Rome and Britain?

4. What does the war spear in Chapter two mean to the story?

5. Describe what Marcus saw at the circus in the fight between the "fisher" and another man.

6. How does Marcus show his concern for his men?

7. How does Cottia react to Marcus's upcoming surgery and how does Esca react once it's over?

8. What interests Marcus about Esca's recollection from childhood about Roman soldiers?

9. Who is Esca, where did he come from, what does he say to Marcus and what does he become to Marcus?

10. Describe how Marcus fares after his heroic attack on the chariot.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What is the rite of manhood and how might it symbolize Marcus's struggle in his life?

Essay Topic 2

Esca argues that the price of Roman order has been too high. He shows Marcus a Celtic shield boss, with a pattern that flows like wind and stars across the front. Esca contrasts it with the neat, orderly embossed decoration of Marcus's own dagger sheath. Marcus understands that the two represent two different worlds. He hopes that with Esca and Cottia, he will be able to bridge the gap between them.

The dagger sheath symbolizes the Roman way of life. It is a well-ordered, conventional and moderately comfortable existence that demands absolute conformity. The shield boss symbolizes the life of the Celtic tribesmen, free, in tune with natural rhythms and expressive, if sometimes uncertain. Marcus realizes that the two represent very different worlds, which are unlikely ever to peacefully coexist. This comparison evokes a major conflict of the novel, the clash of cultures between the Roman Empire and the Celtic tribes.

Do you think two cultures as different as early Britain and ancient Rome can co-exist along side each other? Which culture would you favor and why?

Essay Topic 3

Just as Esca and Cub are loyal to Marcus, the Centurion is loyal to the Legion and to the memory of his father. Marcus is almost certain that the Hispana under his father's leadership would have fought bravely. He longs to avenge his father's honor and learn the circumstances of the deadly ambush that must surely have felled such a powerful force so far from home.

Write a short essay about one of your parents or an adult relative or friend that you admire. Do you think you will have similar values when you are an adult? What do you admire about this person? What do they do that makes you see them as special?

(see the answer keys)

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