Great Short Works of Herman Melville Test | Mid-Book Test - Easy

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This test consists of 15 multiple choice questions and 5 short answer questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. What does the arrangement of the office allow Bartleby to do with the narrator?
(a) See him but not hear him.
(b) Hear him but not see him.
(c) Neither see him nor hear him.
(d) Both see and hear him.

2. What does the narrator's middle-aged employee offer to do for Bartleby?
(a) Teach him manners.
(b) Teach him better work habits.
(c) Black his eyes.
(d) Fire him.

3. What is unusual about the pork at the Coulters' dinner table?
(a) It is not really pork.
(b) It is last year's.
(c) It is only fat and gristle.
(d) It is only hides.

4. Who are Pedro and Sebastian in The Town-Ho's Story?
(a) Sailors on the Town-Ho.
(b) Friends of the narrator.
(c) Sailors on the Pequod.
(d) Writers.

5. Why is the narrator not pleased with Bartleby's industriousness?
(a) Bartleby is relentlessly cheerful.
(b) Bartleby is not cheerful.
(c) Bartleby is only occasionally industrious.
(d) Bartleby is frighteningly mechanical.

6. Why does the captain decide not to flog Steelkilt?
(a) Steelkilt makes an inaudible threat.
(b) He suddenly feels ashamed of his own behavior.
(c) He suddenly feels the menace of the rest of the crew.
(d) He suddenly feels sorry for Steelkilt.

7. What does the narrator say a man does when confronted with an unreasonable situation?
(a) Acquiesces out of courtesy.
(b) Digs in his heels.
(c) Questions his own mind.
(d) Doubts the other person.

8. How is the narrator punished for sneaking into the church?
(a) He is warned and set free.
(b) He is jailed overnight and fined.
(c) He is imprisoned.
(d) He is publicly embarrassed, but pardoned.

9. What was the message of the church meeting the narrator observed?
(a) "Ye are the salt of the earth."
(b) "Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar's."
(c) "Repent and be saved."
(d) "Hide not your light under a bushel."

10. What age is the narrator of Bartleby?
(a) In his forties.
(b) In his thirties.
(c) In his sixties.
(d) In his fifties.

11. What two characteristics does Melville attribute to the islands of the Encantadas?
(a) Solitude and desolation.
(b) Beauty and peace.
(c) Fascination and charm.
(d) Silence and serenity.

12. What do Steelkilt and his men demand in return for obeying orders?
(a) They will not be punished.
(b) They will be given better wages.
(c) Radney will be punished.
(d) They will not have to sweep the decks.

13. How does the narrator get into the London theater presentation?
(a) A stranger gives him a ticket.
(b) He finds a ticket on the sidewalk.
(c) He sneaks in a side door.
(d) He pawns his overcoat to buy a ticket.

14. What human assumption does Melville say is the most preposterous?
(a) Criticism of the poor by the rich.
(b) Criticism of the rich by the poor.
(c) Understanding of the rich by the poor.
(d) Understanding of the poor by the rich.

15. What did a strange boy give the narrator in the theater?
(a) A cup of coffee.
(b) A cake of barley.
(c) A cup of ale.
(d) An unexpected smile.

Short Answer Questions

1. What does Blandmour believe God does for the poor?

2. Why doesn't the narrator dismiss Bartleby for insubordination?

3. How does the narrator describe the men who work the Erie Canal?

4. To what sight in the city does Melville compare the islands of the Encantadas?

5. How does the narrator of "Cock-a-Doodle-Doo?" view locomotives and steamships?

(see the answer keys)

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