Edward II: The Troublesome Reign and Lamentable End of Edward the Second, King of England, with the Tragical Fall of Proud Mortimer 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. At the end of Scene 1, whom does Edward depose in vengeance of his part in Gaveston's exile?

2. At the beginning of the scene, Mortimer Junior brings news that what country is invading Normandy?

3. Over what two forms of execution do the nobles argue regarding Gaveston in Scene 4?

4. Who do Lancaster and Mortimer say no longer inhabits the court?

5. Which vice does Mortimer Junior say is the "venom" that Gaveston has brought to the realm (I.ii.31)?

Short Essay Questions

1. What are the fates of Edward, Spencer Junior and Baldock after they are discovered?

2. In what precarious situation are Spencer Junior and Baldock in Act 2, Scene 1?

3. How does Rice Ap Howell track down Edward?

4. Describe Lightborn.

5. Why does Isabella want Edward dead?

6. How does Edward react to Leicester's departure?

7. How do the nobles respond to Gaveston's advancement?

8. What is Isabella's end?

9. What outrage does Edward commit in this scene regarding Mortimer Senior?

10. What plans does Gaveston upon returning from exile?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The relationship between Gaveston and Edward II is both intense and ambiguous. Write an essay about it, dissecting its purpose within the plot. Does Gaveston ever make mention of his social advancement through Edward? What are the nobles' concerns regarding him? Does Marlowe ever make explicit reference to homosexuality in the play? What does Edward's passionate attachment to Gaveston represent in the world of the play?

Essay Topic 2

Betrayal is a constant driver of plot in Edward II. Power players of medieval England make vows to each other which they break quickly for political advancement or due to lack of resolve. Write an essay about betrayal in the play, in three parts:

Part 1) Mortimer Junior vows to his fellow peers that he cannot allow Gaveston to remain in England, but he relents soon thereafter. How is he so easily swayed to change his mind? How does this put the other nobles in danger? Does it display a weakness that will later destroy him?

Part 2) Isabella constantly swears fidelity and love to Edward, but by Act 4, he is championing the cause of Mortimer Junior. Why is this? Do you buy the justification of her betrayal? How does she pay for it in the final scene of the play?

Part 3) Kent twice betrays the side to whom he has sworn fidelity. How are these two betrayals the most understandable to the audience? Are they the result of conscience rather than ambition?

Essay Topic 3

Edward II is a young and cocky monarch who inflames his country with a complete rejection of certain entrenched institutions. Write and essay about these institutions and how he subverts them, focusing on three. In what ways does he subvert the system? How do the vested interests of England rebel? What is the end result?

Part 1) The social hierarchy.

Part 2) The Church.

Part 3) The military.

(see the answer keys)

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