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. After their return to Sparta, how does Alexandros tell Polynikes the battle made him feel?

2. Thermopylae is described as what?

3. Why does Dienekes initially resist marrying Lady Arete?

4. Where do Xeones and Diomache separate?

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

Short Essay Questions

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

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

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

4. What happens to Xeones after his city is burned?

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

6. How are Xeones and Alexandros assigned after the battle at Antirhion?

7. Who is Bruxieus?

8. How does Xeones describe the Spartan view on war?

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

10. Describe the Spartan line formation.

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

The Spartans hold a unique view of war and enemies. Explain the Spartan view of war and their enemies. Compare and contrast this view to the views of other ancient warrior civilizations.

Essay Topic 3

In ancient Greece, just like many other ancient civilizations, crimes were punished much more severely than they are now. Many crimes involving stealing would result in losing a hand, or having the hands crippled. Have students write an essay answering the following questions:

1. What are these kinds of punishments no longer in use? What caused them to be discontinued in the Western world?

2. Are these kinds of punishments still in use today? If they are, then where, and why?

3. Do you feel that capital and corporal punishment is appropriate punishment for most crimes? Why or why not?

(see the answer keys)

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