Excalibur: A Novel of Arthur 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. Why is Powis able to hide what he is writing about from the bishop?

2. What was the occupation of the narrator of this book?

3. What is Eostre?

4. What direction does Arthur first think the Saxons are going to attack from?

5. What is the fortress made of that Derfel is trapped in?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is included in the first chapter with the purpose of helping the reader understand the plot better?

2. What does Derfel realize when he hears Druids sacrifice the sons of kings?

3. What is the message Arthur has Derfel send to Guinevere?

4. What special assignment is Derfel given when the plans for the Saxon invasion are discussed?

5. What does Aelle say after Derfel has defeated the Saxon warrior in the court?

6. What does Merlin do after Arthur puts an end to the ritual on Mai Dun?

7. How does Arthur form his plan of attack on the Saxon armies?

8. What does Derfel have planted while he is trapped by the Saxon army, and what does this show?

9. Why is little background information given at the beginning of this book?

10. What happens as Derfel and his men prepare to die in battle against the Saxon armies?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What is Derfel's actual birthright, and what does this reveal about his character and his relationship to Arthur?

Essay Topic 2

Despair is a theme that was placed in a number of sensitive places in this plot. What are some of these places, and what role does despair play in this book?

Essay Topic 3

Friendship is a strong theme throughout the book. Where are some places that this theme appears, and how do the characters touched by it react? How do certain friendships change over the course of the book, and what causes these changes?

(see the answer keys)

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