Invisible Cities 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. Which is the city of a thousand wells, sitting above an underground lake?

2. When one leaves Zenobia and travels for six days and seven nights, where would one end up?

3. Polo explains that the city Khan dreams of with the farewells from its harbor has one secret. What is it?

4. Which city is described as having buildings with spiral staircases and with spiral seashells encrusted in the staircases?

5. Polo says that each action in Valdrada is inverted in:

Short Essay Questions

1. Even though Zobeide, the white city, was made from the dreams of many men of different nationalities, how do strangers see the place?

2. When Khan and Polo pause in between their conversations, pondering the meaning of what's been said, what does each imagine or visualize?

3. When Khan instructs Polo to find the city from his dreams that has a north-facing harbor from which ships regularly leave as the people ashore wave their last goodbyes, what does Polo say?

4. In what way are the people of Chloe connected to each other?

5. Explain why Polo says that one cannot forget the city of Zora.

6. What is the significance of the large metal building located at the center of Fedora?

7. What does Polo come to realize about language in Hypatia?

8. Describe how the means of communication between Khan and Polo evolves.

9. How is Maurilia connected to its past?

10. Why does Kublai Khan listen to Marco Polo's fantastic stories about cities he's visited?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Part 1) Why does Polo filter his stories through his memories of Venice? Why is it important for him to connect his stories of Khan's cities to some aspect of Venice? What does he gain from doing this?

Part 2) How does Emperor Khan react to the notion that Polo's accounts of his empire's cities are colored by his memories of Venice? Does it bother him in any way? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 2

Through some of his city descriptions, Polo demonstrates the folly behind people's behavior, customs, traditions, and/or belief systems. Cite three examples from the book where this is the case. Then, compare and contrast these examples. Finally, explain what message you believe Polo is trying to communicate about human nature by these examples.

Essay Topic 3

The two main characters question reality to the point where they are not sure if they are presently traveling and only dreaming of being in Khan's garden, or presently relaxing in the garden while dreaming of their travels. Which do you think is the case? Why? Support your conclusion with evidence from the book.

(see the answer keys)

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