Eaters of the Dead: The Manuscript of Ibn Fadlan 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 kind of clothing do the Northmen wear?

2. What do the warriors do when they reach Rothgar's hall before embarking from the ship?

3. What does Ibn do where they stop?

4. How is a man's possessions handled in the Northmen culture when he dies?

5. What does the letter in Chapter One request?

Short Essay Questions

1. What holds up Ibn's travels?

2. What do the Northmen merchants have to sell and where do they sell it?

3. What does Ibn say about the Oguz Turks?

4. What is Ibn's writing style and why does he write like that?

5. Why is there no adultery among the Turks?

6. Describe Trelburg.

7. What hits the land right after the burial and what does Ibn notice about the Northmen?

8. Where does the party stay for two days and what does Ibn find out about Northmen behavior before a sea voyage?

9. How do the Northmen hold funeral rites for their leader?

10. What trouble are the Northmen experiencing when Ibn meets them?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Choose one of the following to discuss:

1. Choose two significant symbols and trace and analyze their appearance in "Eaters of the Dead". Are these universal symbols? Would they be understood in any culture? Are there other symbols that would portray the same idea? What are they? Why do you think Crichton chooses the symbols she does?

2. Choose two important metaphors and trace and analyze their appearance in the novel. Are these universal metaphors? Would they be understood in any culture? Are there other metaphors that would portray the same idea? What are they? Why do you think Crichton chooses the metaphors he does?

3. Discuss Crichton's use (or lack ) of literary device (such as foreshadowing, cliffhangers, deux ex machina, etc...), and how they add or detract from the story. Does Crichton use too many or too little literary techniques? State which of the five major elements of fiction the literary device is related to (style, character, plot, setting, theme).

Essay Topic 2

Wyglif's possessions are divided into three parts: one for his family, one to purchase a girl to die with him, and the last to be buried alongside him. A wild party ensues in which the Northmen get very drunk and indulge their pleasures with various women. A woman comes forward to say she will be buried with Wyglif. The girl is taken into a hut where she is raped by all of Wyglif's men. She is then held down by two men while the Angel of Death slits the girl's throat.

1. Discuss the status of slaves in the Northmen society based on the statement above. Use examples from "Eaters of the Dead" and your own research to support your answer.

2. Discuss the status of women in a culture that encourages gang rape of a woman. Use examples from the book and your own research to support your answer.

3. How do you think the above burial practice, if viewed from a modern perspective, might demonstrate the evolution of the human race? Use examples from the book and your own life to support your answer.

Essay Topic 3

The Northmen realize they are often gone at sea for long periods of time and with little hope of return. Because of their lifestyle, they do not expect their women to remain chaste. Although Ibn Fadlan views the behavior of the Northmen as uncouth, the reader may begin to realize that in many aspects the Northmen have a very practical approach to life.

1. How do you think the fact that Northmen are gone from their families for long periods of time might affect their culture? Use examples from the book and your own life to support your answer.

2. Does the fact that the Northmen do not expect them women to remain chaste seem to be a very modern idea? Why or why not? Use examples from "Eaters of the Dead" and your own life to support your answer.

3. Discuss ways in which you have noticed the Northmen taking a practical approach to life. Use examples from "Eaters of the Dead" and your research to support your answer.

(see the answer keys)

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