Hamlet 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. When Hamlet leaves his mother's room in Act 3, Scene 4, what does he take with him?

2. At the end of the play, a messenger arrives from England with news. What is the news?

3. When he is asked where his first victim's body is, what does Hamlet do?

4. What happens between Laertes and Hamlet in the graveyard scene?

5. When Hamlet visits his mother in her room in Act 3, Scene 4, he speaks very harshly to his mother. What makes him stop?

Short Essay Questions

1. Who is the first person in Elsinore to find out that Hamlet is on his way back to Denmark instead of going to England? How does that person find out?

2. Whose burial does Hamlet witness in Act 5?

3. As Hamlet travels to the boat for England, what or who does Hamlet find on a plain in Denmark?

4. Hamlet calls Rosencrantz and Guildenstern "a sponge." Why does he say that?

5. After Polonius's death, who is sent to find Hamlet?

6. When Claudius hears about Polonius's death, what is his first thought?

7. After Polonius's death, what does Gertrude tell Claudius about Hamlet?

8. List the major characters who die during the last scene of the play.

9. What plan do Laertes and Claudius come up with in Act 4, Scene 7 to kill Hamlet?

10. At the end of the play, we learn of the death of two minor characters. Who are they, and how do we learn of their death?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The question of suicide comes up repeatedly in the play. Hamlet mentions it on multiple occasions and Ophelia's death is potentially a suicide and questionable enough that her funeral rites are "maimed." Discuss the play's treatment of suicide, focusing on the following points:

-- How is suicide presented? Is it a good thing or a bad thing?

-- Are there universal truths about death and suicide, as Hamlet seems to suggest in the "To be or not to be" speech? Or does the play contradict that by adding in Ophelia's suicide?

-- Do you think Ophelia does commit suicide? Why or why not?

-- Do you think Hamlet is essentially committing suicide at the end of the play? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 2

One of the major themes in the play is connected to ears, hearing, and trusting what you hear. Identify one or two important moments in each act when that theme comes up. Explain the moment, why it is important, and how it contributes to the overall theme.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the use of irony, dramatic and otherwise, throughout the play. How does Shakespeare use irony to make his scenes more effective?

(see the answer keys)

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