Ethan Frome 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. Where is Ethan Frome going at the start of Chapter 1?

2. Zeena is described as an old woman, although she is ____________________________.

3. Ethan dreads Zeena's trips to the doctor because _____________________________.

4. What motif continues to suggest a promise of happiness or well-being for Ethan at the start of Chapter 4?

5. Zeena finally stopped criticizing Mattie when __________________________________.

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does Ethan give up on the hope of money from Andrew Hale?

2. What is the atmosphere between Ethan and Mattie like after dinner?

3. Why does Ethan find Zeena's silences unsettling?

4. Why doesn't Ethan protest Zeena's costly doctor visit?

5. Why are Ethan and Mattie continually reminded of Zeena?

6. What is Ethan's attitude toward Denis Eady? Why?

7. What does Ethan allow himself to fantasize about during his walk home with Mattie?

8. Describe Ethan and Zeena as they fall asleep at night.

9. Why is Mattie upset to learn that the Fromes expect her to leave them someday?

10. Why does Zeena's family refuse to help Mattie when her father dies?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Hal Borland said, "No winter lasts forever; no spring skips its turn." Consdering this quote, write an essay in which you argue whether or not Ethan's symbolic "winter" has lasted forever, or whether spring has come to him in any way. Use specific examples to support your text.

Essay Topic 2

Consider the motifs of brokenness, sickness, and injury in Ethan Frome. Write an essay in which you explain the significance of any one of these motifs to the theme or message of the novel.

Essay Topic 3

Consider Wharton's use of symbols such as the horse, the cold, and the farmhouse to establish Frome's character throughout the novel. Then write an essay in which you identify at least three symbols that represent qualities of Ethan's character.

(see the answer keys)

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