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. 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.

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

3. What does the crew decide not to do after Steelkilt is flogged?
(a) Call out when whales were sighted.
(b) Start a mutiny.
(c) Desert together.
(d) Obey the captain.

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

5. To what sight in the city does Melville compare the islands of the Encantadas?
(a) A pile of trash.
(b) A pile of rocks.
(c) A pile of leaves.
(d) A pile of cinders.

6. What has the uncle in "The Happy Failure" invented?
(a) A device for building dams.
(b) A device for diverting rivers.
(c) A device for draining swamps.
(d) A device for purifying water.

7. How does Melville describe pelicans?
(a) Elegant and streamlined.
(b) Modest and humble.
(c) Clever and complicated.
(d) Woebegone and penitential.

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

9. What did the failure of his invention do for the uncle in "The Happy Failure?"
(a) Made him disappointed.
(b) Made him more determined.
(c) Made him furious.
(d) Made him a good man.

10. What benefit does the narrator get from his indulgence of Bartleby's eccentricities?
(a) Bartleby's friendship.
(b) The approval of his peers.
(c) Self-approval.
(d) The approval of his employees.

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

12. What does Steelkilt threaten to do if he is flogged by the captain?
(a) Seek an unnamed revenge.
(b) Tell the admiralty board of review.
(c) Jump overboard.
(d) Murder the captain.

13. How does the narrator of "Cock-a-Doodle-Doo?" treat his creditor after hearing the crow?
(a) He throws him out.
(b) He offers to double his payment.
(c) He apologizes.
(d) He pays him promptly.

14. What is the main task of the narrator's youngest employee in Bartleby?
(a) Cook.
(b) Copying.
(c) Errand boy.
(d) Legal research.

15. How long has the uncle in "The Happy Failure" worked on his invention?
(a) All year.
(b) Three months.
(c) All month.
(d) Ten years.

Short Answer Questions

1. How does Steelkilt respond to Radney's request that he sweep the deck?

2. Why does the captain decide not to flog Steelkilt?

3. What quality of Bartleby's induces the narrator to hire him?

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

5. What good qualities does Bartleby have as an employee?

(see the answer keys)

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