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. What surprises Elizabeth when she goes to see Henchard?

3. What is Abel's punishment for being chronically late?

4. What change is observed in Michael's behavior toward Donald when Donald becomes more popular?

5. How does Elizabeth and Lucetta meet?

Short Essay Questions

1. Donald Farfrae is a stranger in Casterbridge, yet he decides to help Henchard. This is not a common act between strangers as seen by Henchard's surprise. What does this say about Farfrae's character? Does he really want something or is he really acting as a good Samaritan?

2. At the hiring market, Farfrae and Lucetta witness a farmer who is in a dilemma. Either the farmer loses his sweetheart or fails his father. Lucetta shows concern and Farfrae offers to hire the man close in town so the farmer does not have to choose. What is the motivation behind Donald's decision? Does he really have concern for the farmer? Is it to impress Lucetta instead?

3. Before Michael discovers who Elizabeth's real father is, he wants her to legally change her name to Henchard. For whom does he want this? How does Michael regard Elizabeth's feelings in this matter? Is it for them as a relationship as purely for his selfish wants?

4. Elizabeth Jane is very observant of Farfrae and Henchard. What does she notice about their relationship? What are some expectations that come true? Why does the dismissal of Farfrae not so unexpected?

5. When Henchard first learns about Donald's popularity, he cannot help but be jealous. However, he sees Donald as a genuinely good man who cares for people's feelings. What internal battle does Henchard experience concerning Donald Farfrae? How does he personally feel about Farfrae? How does this affect his natural jealousy?

6. 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?

7. Hardy introduces Lucetta as a mystery woman, but with some hints that she knows Henchard. He also describes her as graceful and nice to Elizabeth. However, as the novel progresses, how does Hardy foreshadow that Miss Templeman may not be the woman Elizabeth thinks she is? What clues and observations does Elizabeth make, or comments of Hardy, show that Lucetta is as contriving as the other characters in Casterbridge?

8. Henchard shows both happiness and reservations concerning Susan's return. Henchard plans to remarry and care for his family. However, in his note to Susan, he writes, "The news upsets me almost," and in their meeting he states, "But- to lead me into ... this difficulty about our living together ..." What is going through Henchard's mind as he learns of his wife's return? Does he love her or is he obliged to a duty? What causes his reservations?

9. What changes are seen in the furmity woman when Susan and Elizabeth-Jane returns?

10. How does Michael Henchard feel when Susan leaves with the sailor?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Hardy develops characters with complexity. Some play a larger role, but even the smaller roles are there for a reason. Why does Hardy include talk from the townsfolk? What purpose does it serve to hear the chatting of Solomon, Coney, Mrs. Cuxom in the Three Mariners, at the mayor's wedding, and of Susan's last day at the water pump?

Essay Topic 2

Although there is resentment towards the upper class from the lower class, there is a sense of forgiveness amongst them. Why are the lower class so much more forgiving to one another? Why do the upper class lack this sense of unity within the class?

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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