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. Why does Diomache feel that no man will want her?

2. In the first chapter, about how many Persians are said to have been slain in just three days of battle with the Spartans?

3. Thermopylae is described as what?

4. Who is Dienekes' squire?

5. What is exoterike harmoniea?

Short Essay Questions

1. Who is Bruxieus?

2. What does the lady Arete reveal to Xeones?

3. How does Dienekes feel about Tommie's suggestion that Sparta join Persia by choice?

4. Describe the battlefield at Antirhion.

5. What is a helot?

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

7. Describe the Spartan line formation.

8. How do the Spartans count their dead?

9. When the Spartans realize that the boys followed them, what is the punishment that Xeones must endure?

10. How does Xeones begin his story?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The preferred style of combat for the Spartans is the heavy infantry phalanx. Answer the following questions about the Spartan phalanx:

1. Describe the structure of the phalanx.

2. What role does discipline play in the successful phalanx?

3. What role does cohesive teamwork play in the successful phalanx?

4. What strengths and weaknesses does the phalanx have?

Essay Topic 2

1. In ancient Sparta, as well as today, soldiers are trained by simulating real battle conditions. During these training exercises, soldiers can undergo severe physical and mental stress, and can actually die from the training, or in training accidents. What other disadvantages might there be to of such training methods? What are the benefits?

2. How are the training methods of the ancient Spartans like the methods used my most of the world today? How are they different?

Essay Topic 3

During the battle at Thermopylae, several soldiers are caught trying to desert. Answer the following questions:

1. What reasons do the men give for desertion?

2. What reasons does Leonidas give for allowing the men to flee?

3. Why do some of the men beg to be allowed to return to duty after the speech that Leonidas gives?

4. How do the other men feel about those who desert? What do the other men want to do about it?

(see the answer keys)

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