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. By what warrior code are young Spartans raised?

2. How old are Xeones and Diomache when they separate?

3. What does Xeones become in the Spartan army?

4. To whom does Xeones tell his story?

5. What does the Egyptian tell the Spartans about the Persian invasion?

Short Essay Questions

1. Who catches Alexandros not using his shield properly? What happens?

2. How do Alexandros and Xeones get across the Gulf of Corinth when following the army?

3. How does Xeones begin his story?

4. Describe the battlefield at Antirhion.

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

6. Why is Xeones depressed? What happens?

7. Describe the relationship between Alexandros and Xeones.

8. What is the outcome of the battle?

9. Why does Polynikes seem to think that Spartans are better than any other men?

10. Describe the training exercise at the Oaks.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What causes Leonidas to offer freedom to the helots, and allow anyone who does not want to stand and die the opportunity to leave? Why do he and his men remain to fight the Persians, knowing that they will die? What are some reasons that so many of them leave? Does leaving the field of battle, knowing that they can not win and will die, make all of the men who leave cowards? Explain your answer.

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

There exists between all soldiers of honor and bravery, a certain respect and admiration. What examples of this are given in the book? Compare these to examples of honor and/or bravery in other literary works. Answer the question, "What is the opposite of fear?"

(see the answer keys)

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