In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex Test | Mid-Book Test - Easy

Nathaniel Philbrick
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This test consists of 15 multiple choice questions and 5 short answer questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. How old is Thomas Nickerson when he first boards the Essex?
(a) Sixteen years old.
(b) Fourteen years old.
(c) Eighteen years old.
(d) Fifteen years old.

2. What do the men do in order to prevent water from splashing over the edges of the remaining boats?
(a) They put covers on the tops of the boats.
(b) They put weights on each end of the boats to minimize their movement.
(c) They build bigger sails for the boats.
(d) They build up the sides of each boat.

3. As the frustrations grow on the Essex, what complaint do the men bring to Pollard at the end of Chapter 3?
(a) More chores on the ship.
(b) Unfair treatment by the first and second mate.
(c) Smaller food portions.
(d) Less sleep time.

4. How long does the average hunt for a sperm whale take?
(a) Two to three years.
(b) One to two months.
(c) Six months to a year.
(d) One to two years.

5. What is Nickerson's response to the captain's approach in introducing himself to the crew?
(a) He is impressed.
(b) He is confused.
(c) He is inspired.
(d) He is surprised.

6. Why does Pollard think that backtracking to the Galapagos Islands is impossible in Chapter 6?
(a) Because of the distance.
(b) Because of the uncertainty of how to get back to them.
(c) Because of the waves around the islands.
(d) Because of the wind direction.

7. How many men normally would attempt to approach, harpoon, and kill the whale?
(a) Eight.
(b) Four.
(c) Two.
(d) Six.

8. Why does Chase hesitate to attack the giant whale when it resurfaces on the starboard after the collision?
(a) There are no weapons nearby.
(b) He is worried the tail will destroy the steering device.
(c) He is afraid because of the size of the whale.
(d) He is ordered to halt by Pollard.

9. According to the Preface, what is the primary reason for whale hunting?
(a) Sport.
(b) Oil.
(c) Clothing.
(d) Food.

10. How much can sperm whales weigh?
(a) Sixty tons.
(b) Six hundred pounds.
(c) Twelve hundred tons.
(d) Twelve hundred pounds.

11. Which of the following is not included in the list of troubles that the bad weather causes for the Essex in Chapter 4?
(a) There is no stability when cutting up the whale blubber.
(b) It is difficult to lower the whale boats.
(c) It is difficult to raise the whale boats.
(d) Loss of direction.

12. How are sailors paid?
(a) According to their rank.
(b) According to their time at sea for each trip.
(c) According to how many whales they have killed.
(d) According to how many whales they have killed and captured.

13. How long is the huge whale that appears off the port bow in Chapter 5?
(a) Eighty- five feet long.
(b) Seventy- five feet long.
(c) Sixty -five feet long.
(d) Ninety- five feet long.

14. What happens when Chase's boat attempts to approach a whale on November 16?
(a) The whale drags the boat for several miles.
(b) The whale emerges underneath the boat.
(c) The whale is wounded, but not killed.
(d) The whale outruns the boat.

15. How much water is each man given per day as the crew attempts to make it to land in Chapter 7?
(a) A half pint.
(b) A pint.
(c) A quarter pint.
(d) Three-quarters of a pint.

Short Answer Questions

1. What Ecuadorian city does the Essex stop at during September in Chapter 4?

2. How long does the crew of the Essex remain by the wrecked ship?

3. When does the loading of the Essex begin?

4. As described in Chapter 3, what does each whale boat contain?

5. How do Pollard and Chase react to the way the men take the Essex out to sea?

(see the answer keys)

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