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

Nathaniel Philbrick
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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

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

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

3. How long does it take the crew of the Essex to kill eleven whales in Chapter 4?
(a) Three months.
(b) Five months.
(c) Two months.
(d) Four months.

4. According to one naval architect, what might have helped the Essex withstand the whale's attack?
(a) Nothing could have helped it.
(b) If the boat was smaller.
(c) If the boat was bigger.
(d) If the boat was new.

5. How old is Captain George Pollard, Jr. when he boards the Essex in Chapter 2?
(a) Thirty- eight years old.
(b) Thirty- four years old.
(c) Twenty- eight years old.
(d) Twenty- four years old.

Short Answer Questions

1. How much does the huge whale that appears off the port bow in Chapter 5 weigh?

2. After stopping at the Cape Verde Islands in Chapter 3, how many spare whale boats does the Essex now have?

3. Why is the crew concerned about the Marquesas?

4. Which of the following is not taken by the crew as the Essex sinks in Chapter 5?

5. What surprises Nickerson about Chase while they are on the sea?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does the crew of the Essex decide to sail towards South America instead of the Society Islands?

2. What modifications are made to the whale boats in the beginning of Chapter 6?

3. What happens when the first whale of the trip is sighted?

4. What events take place on Hood Island at the end of Chapter 4?

5. What is used to determine the wages of sailors that participate in whaling trips, and how will Nickerson be paid?

6. What troubles is the Essex having at Cape Horn and off the coast of Chile?

7. How does the crew of the Essex deal with the second whale sighted in Chapter 3, and what is a Nantucket sleigh ride?

8. What happens when the Essex meets the Aurora?

9. How are the three whale boats divided and stocked for the trip at the end of Chapter 6?

10. What are some of the facts that Philbrick discloses about the sinking of the Essex in the Preface?

(see the answer keys)

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