The Importance of Being Earnest Test | Lesson Plans Mid-Book Test - Hard

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Mid-Book Test - Hard

Name: _________________________ Period: ___________________

This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What aspect of humanity is Jack sick of?

2. What does Lady Bracknell describe as a "delicate exotic fruit?"

3. What most attracts Gwendolyn to "Ernest?"

4. What does Jack plan to do in the near future?

5. What item did Jack leave in Algernon's house the last time he called?

Short Essay Questions

1. What piece of advice does Lady Bracknell give Miss Prism after Chasuble declares his love?

2. What does Gwendolen love so much about the name, Ernest?

3. What is Lady Bracknell's response to the story of Jack's adoption?

4. How do Algernon and Jack break the women's barrier of silence?

5. What misconception does Jack have about Miss Prism after she tells the story of his origins?

6. Do Cecily and Gwendolen believe the men's reasons for deception?

7. How do Cecily and Gwendolen learn the truth about Ernest?

8. What s the final obstacle the men face in wooing their women, and how do they overcome it?

9. Why are there no cucumber sandwiches at Algernon's when Lady Bracknell arrives?

10. What is Algernon's stated opinion of love and marriage in Act 1?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

The Importance of Being Earnest wittily subverts certain respected establishments in English Victorian society. Write three body paragraphs about how Oscar Wilde uses his play to lampoon the following institutions:

Part 1) The Family and the Household

Part 2) Creditors and solicitors

Part 3) The Church

Essay Topic 2

Miss Prism is one of the more complex characters in The Importance of Being Earnest. Write an essay covering the following topics surrounding her character:

Part 1) When we first meet Miss Prism in Act 2, what do we think is her passion in life? Does she have one? What are her attitudes - stated or implied - or art and marriage?

Part 2) At what point do we realize that Miss Prism has feelings for Chasuble? What hope does she have of taking him as a husband?

Part 3) How do the revelations about Miss Prism's past affect our understanding of her character? Is she, in the end, a more or less sympathetic character?

Essay Topic 3

Choose one of the following options to write about:

1.) What does Algernon's habit of always eating say about him as a character? Write about three examples in the play where Algernon is forced to explain his appetite and how he does so.

2.) Cecily and Miss Prism's argument about her diary and the three-volume novel say much about both. What secrets does this conversation allude to, and how does it frame each one's attitude toward literature and love?

3.) Chasuble is constantly quoting - and misquoting - religious sources and tenets. How does his level of comfort with his chosen profession help or hinder his decision regarding Miss Prism at the end of the play?

(see the answer keys)

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