The House of Mirth Test | Mid-Book 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. Whom did the hostess of the party promise Mrs. George Dorset would be at the party?

2. Why does Lily go to Gerty Farish's apartment after her confrontation with Gus Trenor at his house?

3. Why does Lily join a party with Carry Fischer and another couple in the Adirondacks?

4. What is Lily wondering about the night before she intends to go to Sunday morning church services with Percy Gryce?

5. How does Lily acquire letters found by Mrs. Haffen, Lawrence Selden's cleaning lady?

Short Essay Questions

1. In book 1, chapter 1, why is Lawrence Selden surprised that Lily accepts his offer to have tea alone with him in his apartment?

2. What three options does Lily have regarding her debt to Gus Trenor?

3. What does Gerty Farish think will happen between her and Lawrence Selden because of their friendship for Lily?

4. In book 1, chapter 4, how does the author use the gossip of Judy Trenor?

5. In book 1, chapter 7, what does Bertha Dorset do to get back at Lily for spending Sunday afternoon with Lawrence Selden?

6. What does Gerty Farish tell Lawrence Selden about Lily in book 2, chapter 8?

7. In book 1, chapter 13, how does Lily feel when Gus Trenor reveals his true intentions toward her?

8. In book 1, chapter 6, what does Lawrence Selden warn Lily about regarding her goals?

9. Compare Lawrence Selden's feelings about women with Lily's feelings about women.

10. At lunch in Monte Carlo, Carry Fischer tells Lawrence Selden that a prince was about to propose to Lily, and then Lily started flirting with his stepson. What incident from book 1 is this situation similar to regarding Lawrence Selden?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

One theme developed by the author in The House of Mirth is how men and women related to each other during the time in history in which The House of Mirth is set. Compare and contrast the relationship between men and women during the time in which The House of Mirth is set to the relationship between men and women today.

Essay Topic 2

Answer all parts.

Edith Wharton ends The House of Mirth with a word left unsaid by both Lawrence Selden and Lily.

1) What do you think that word is? Why? Use examples from the story to explain your answer.

2) If Lawrence Selden and Lily had both been able to say the word to each other, would the ending of the story have been different? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

In The House of Mirth, Edith Wharton comments on high society and the roles of women in society at the time in which The House of Mirth was written. Choose either the author's comments on high society or the author's comments on women's roles in society at the time. Include in your answer what you believe her opinion is, and why. What is the tone of these comments? What makes you think so? Give examples from the story to explain your answer.

(see the answer keys)

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