The Importance of Being Earnest 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. Where does Algernon suggest dining instead of the Savoy?

2. What does Cecily pay no attention to, according to Jack?

3. To what composer does Algernon compare his Aunt's ring? Tchaikovsky

4. How does Lady Bracknell feel about Jack's having lost both of his parents?

5. Where is Jack going to "kill" Ernest?

Short Essay Questions

1. How did Cecily become Jack's ward?

2. What, according to Jack and Algernon, is the difference between mothers and fathers in modern society?

3. Why does Algernon discreetly write down Jack's country address on his cuff?

4. Why does Jack intend to "kill" Ernest?

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

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

7. How is it that Jack does not know who his parents are?

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

9. What orders does Algernon give Lane at the end of the First Act?

10. What is Jack Worthing's business in London?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Choose one of the following options to write about:

1.) What type of freedom does Ernest allow Jack? Can he do certain things because of Ernest that he could not without him? What unexpected challenges arise because of the freedom Ernest allows?

2.) Write about debt as a driving force in the play? Which characters - both real and fictional - have accumulated debt and how doe they justify it. Cite specific examples in the text.

3.) To what extent are Lane, Miss Prism, and Chasuble all constrained by unseen forces to act in a certain way? Do any of them overcome these forces?

Essay Topic 2

Write an essay, focusing on Lady Bracknell's standards for a suitor. Cite three examples of her requirements, and defend her insistence on them. How do Lady Bracknell's concerns reflect the lack of options open to Victorian women.

Essay Topic 3

Choose one of the following topics to write about:

1.) What aspects of a person are important to a courtship according to Cecily? How do these differ from those of Lady Bracknell?

2.) What is Algernon's stated stance on romance and marriage in Act I? Why do you think he decides to propose to Cecily in spite of this position? Cite statements made by Algernon later to justify your argument.

3.) Gwendolen's statement about always wanting to marry a man named Ernest is absurd, but her reasons for liking the name are indicative of a desire everyone has when getting married. What are her reasons for liking the name and how do they indicate a universal desire of humankind?

(see the answer keys)

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