The Mayor of Casterbridge 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. What is Jopp's reaction to Henchard's curt behavior?

2. In chapter 28, why do so many gather around Town Hall?

3. What inspires Michael to finally ask Lucetta to marry him?

4. What surprising feature does Elizabeth and Susan notice about the glasses in front of the mayor?

5. What is Elizabeth's manner when she first sees Farfrae in his room?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the atmosphere of the furmity tent when Michael offers his wife for sale?

2. Earlier in the book, Jopp is tersely introduced and forgotten when his management position is taken by Farfrae. Re-introduced years later in chapter 26, he is described as coming from the back slum and his clothing a sign of need. Unjustly fired, what role do you think Jopp plays in Henchard's life?

3. When the furmity woman is shown as the defendant, Henchard notices something familiar but the thought flees his mind as quickly as it comes in. How does the furmity woman represent the sale of his wife twenty years ago? How does Henchard's reaction to the furmity woman represent how he feels about the transaction?

4. Henchard becomes distraught and angry at the idea that Elizabeth is not his daughter. Out of pride, he does not tell her after the big deal he makes for her to change her name. How does Henchard express his feelings if not in telling her the truth?

5. When Susan dies, Henchard agrees to marry Lucetta out of pity. He still does not call on her when she arrives to Casterbridge. Suddenly, he is adamant about getting her attention and marrying her. What causes the sudden change of heart? What does Henchard want from this?

6. When Susan is auctioned to Newson, she thinks it is binding. However, Hardy remarks that she is not the only woman to think this way. What does this say about Susan? About the times?

7. When Susan begins her search for Michael, Hardy refers her as Mrs. Newson, for that is what she calls herself. However, in chapter nine, Hardy calls her Mrs. Henchard again for the first time. Why does Hardy return to her first marriage name? How does Susan feel about her role and position at this point?

8. When Henchard visits Lucetta and asks her to marry him, she looks out the window to see Farfrae's hay wagons. What earlier scene is this reminiscent of? What is its importance in the storyline?

9. How does Solomon Longways view the mayor?

10. Henchard is a man of wealth and status in Casterbridge, yet he is lonely in friendship as well as marriage. As soon as he meets Farfrae, he is intrigued. Not only does he look to Farfrae as a business manager, but also as a friend. What benefits and dangers does Henchard risk in befriending Farfrae so early on with such sensitive confessions?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

When Susan learns Henchard is the mayor, she is afraid to meet him, due to his success. Susan partially expects him to be in the stocks or in debtor's prison, so why does she search for him? Since he is well-off, why the fear? Is this expected from her? What does Susan want from Michael Henchard?

Essay Topic 2

In chapter 25, Michael tells Lucetta, "But it is not by what it is, in this life, but by what appears, that you are judged..." It is evident that Michael lives with a lot of deceit and follows his own advice. Do you agree? Do you disagree? How is his life judged? Do you think the truth ever catches up to the facade?

Essay Topic 3

In chapter 40, Michael begins to go through a change that is more powerful than previous times. Describe the epiphanies Michael learns about himself in this chapter.

(see the answer keys)

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