Great Short Works of Herman Melville Test | Final Test - Hard

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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. Who lives in the cottage that the narrator of "The Piazza" finds in the mountains?

2. Why does the narrator of "The Piazza" believe the soil is richer around the cottage that he finds?

3. What does the narrator in "The Paradise of Bachelors" say has become of the Knights Templar?

4. What does the narrator in "The Fiddler" do with his manuscripts?

5. What does Melville hope to do for the Marquis de Grandvin?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does the narrator of "I and My Chimney" believe his chimney is good for invalids?

2. What seems odd about Benito Cereno's ship when Captain Delano first sees it?

3. What does the narrator claim shows Jack Gentian's natural gentility?

4. What does the bug in the apple-tree table teach the narrator's daughter, Julia?

5. In "The Lightning Rod Man," why does the narrator pretend to mistake the salesman for the god Jupiter Tonans?

6. Why does the owner of the paper factory in "The Tartarus of Maids" tell the narrator that all of his workers are called "girls"?

7. What does the narrator of "The Piazza" think when he first sees a single bright spot in the northwestern hills?

8. Why does the narrator of "The Lightning Rod Man" compare the salesman to a worm?

9. What is unusual about the bug that emerges from the apple-tree table in the story of that name?

10. What does Jimmy Rose retain after he has lost his fortune?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Melville employs a wide variety of stylistic techniques in his writing, including a poetic use of repetition. In "I and My Chimney," for example, he writes of " . . . a mysterious door, entering to a mysterious closet; and here I keep mysterious cordials of a choice, mysterious flavor." In your essay, analyze this and other examples of artful repetition you find in these stories.

Essay Topic 2

Melville's purposes in writing are both artistic and moralistic. Select a story in which you see his purpose as basically one or the other, and give examples from the story in your essay that support your thesis.

Essay Topic 3

When Billy Budd is impressed into the royal navy, the captain of the ship he is leaving says that a former enemy, called Red Whiskers, " . . . now really loves Billy--loves him or is the biggest hypocrite that ever I heard of." Is this an instance of skillful foreshadowing? In your essay, analyze why the captain's lament is or is not an example of Melville's foreshadowing the main conflict in Billy Budd.

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