Gates of Fire Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Steven Pressfield
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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 is the reason for Xeones returning to life?

2. What are the names of the two dogs that Xeones and Diomache find?

3. Who does Diomache take with her?

4. What do the people of Sparta sing as the soldiers march off to war?

5. For what is Xeones punished after the battle at Antirhion?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does Xerxes want to hear about the Spartans?

2. How does Xeones come to follow the Spartan army when they march out to war?

3. What is the outcome of the battle?

4. What does the lady Arete reveal to Xeones?

5. How do the Spartans count their dead?

6. Why does the author jump from place to place in the story?

7. Describe the battlefield at Antirhion.

8. How does Xeones come to be in the Persian camp?

9. What is the concern of the lady Paraleio, Alexandros' mother?

10. Why do the Spartans punish their young boys by whipping them?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What is an all-sire unit? Explain what it means to be an all-sire unit. What would it be like to be a member of one of these units? Compare the Spartan all-sire units with similar units of other civilizations and times.

Essay Topic 2

After the battle at Thermopylae, The Persians capture the body of King Leonidas, and mutilate it. Describe what they do to his body. For what reasons might the Persians commit this act of disrespect and defilement on the body of the Spartan king? What about this bothers Xerxes? How does it affect Xerxes' decision making and performance?

Describe the dreams that Xerxes has after Leonidas' body is mutilated. Why is he so plagued by these nightmares? Is he afraid? Explain your answers.

Essay Topic 3

When the Persians arrive at the Hot Gates, they take about two days to attack. What are they doing during that time? Why does it take so long?

Describe the stress and anxiety that might build up for the Greeks over the course of a couple of days of waiting for an attack from a force that greatly outnumbers them. Is it important to distract the soldiers from this stress? Why or why not?

How does Leonidas have his men deal with it? What ways of dealing with the stress do some of the men find for themselves? How would you suggest dealing with pre-battle stress, and why?

(see the answer keys)

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