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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. When Polo first communicates with Khan, the emperor is able to:
2. Which is the city of perceptions and symbols, where items are valuable because of what they represent, not what they really are?
3. When Polo goes to Hypatia, what does he learn?
4. Which city has supposedly languished and deteriorated, forgotten by the earth?
5. Which city is described as having buildings with spiral staircases and with spiral seashells encrusted in the staircases?
Short Essay Questions
1. Why does Kublai Khan listen to Marco Polo's fantastic stories about cities he's visited?
2. How do the cities described by Polo in Chapter 8 depict confusion?
3. Khan and Polo each envision model cities. From these models, what are the two men able to deduce?
4. Describe the gods in the two religions of Isaura.
5. When Polo suggests to Khan that the garden where they share stories may exist only in their minds and that, in reality, they may still be traveling, what does the emperor say?
6. Why does Polo say that it is best to visit Diomira on a September evening?
7. Who lives in the underground city of Eusapia, and who has access to it?
8. In what significant way is Argia different from all other cities Polo describes?
9. Briefly describe Kublai Khan's atlases.
10. What does Polo come to realize about language in Hypatia?
Essay Topic 1
Which of the two characters, Khan or Polo, has a more realistic understanding of the state of the empire? Which would you say has a more hopeful view of the empire's future? Support your answers with examples from the story.
Essay Topic 2
Is it ever possible to tell whether Polo's stories have any truth to them or are completely made up? Why or why not? What examples or book passages support your conclusion?
Essay Topic 3
When telling stories to Khan from the steps of the palace, Polo emphasizes the importance of the evening breeze they are enjoying. Explain how the breeze serves as a grounding mechanism. How does it work to imprint memories in Khan's mind? What purpose does it serve the stories Polo tells? How does the breeze affect Khan's connection to the stories and his cities?
This section contains 1,973 words
(approx. 7 pages at 300 words per page)