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. In book 1, chapter 5, what does Lily purposefully interrupt on Sunday morning?

2. Why is Lily envious of Mrs. Bertha Dorset's flirting with Percy Gryce at the party?

3. How does Lily feel when she sees Lawrence Selden at her cousin's wedding?

4. What does the note that Lily finds next to her bedside from Lawrence Selden say ?

5. In book 1, chapter 14, what makes Gerty realize that Lawrence Selden is not in love with her?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe Lawrence Selden's background.

2. Why does Lily believe it would be better to marry Simon Rosedale instead of George Dorset?

3. In book 1, chapter 1, what is the reason for Lily's reaction to Lawrence Selden's suggestion that they have tea at the popular cafe as Lily waits for her train?

4. In book 2, chapter 11, what does Lily realize about herself based on Simon Rosedale's love for her?

5. In book 1, chapter 11, what does Lily's aunt do after Grace Stepney talks to her about Lily?

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

7. Why doesn't Lily use the letters she acquired from Mrs. Haffen to get back at Bertha Dorset?

8. In book 1, chapter 11, what does Grace Stepney tell her aunt about Lily?

9. Explain Carry Fischer's reasoning in book 2, chapter 6, for Lily to marry either George Dorset or Simon Rosedale.

10. In book 1, chapter 10, why does Lily continue her arrangement with Gus Trenor?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

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.

Essay Topic 2

In The House of Mirth, Edith Wharton criticizes the relationships women have with each other because they are competitive and mean. Choose a relationship between two women in The House of Mirth that best exemplifies the competitive and mean spirit criticized by the author. Explain why you chose this particular relationship.

Essay Topic 3

Answer all parts.

Why did Edith Wharton choose The House of Mirth for the title of the novel?

1) Give examples from the book that explain the title.

2) Do you think the title fits the book? Why or why not?

3) If you could give the book a different title, what would it be? Give reasons for your answer.

(see the answer keys)

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