Miracle at Philadelphia Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Catherine Drinker Bowen
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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. Who writes that Rhode Island's absence from the Convention is insignificant in the face of the stated unity of the delegates?

2. Why is it difficult for Congress to obtain a quorum?

3. Why is Thomas Jefferson absent from the Convention?

4. What is the ever-present danger delegates do not discuss?

5. What is important about the reading of state credentials?

Short Essay Questions

1. What are the terms of Hamilton's plan for a republican government?

2. Why is there a secrecy rule at the Convention?

3. Why is there an argument over the issue of a single executive?

4. Under the Articles of Confederation, what are some of the weaknesses of government?

5. What is the relationship between France and America during the period of the Convention?

6. What kind of reception does John Adams receive in England?

7. Why does Madison believe popular ratification of the Constitution is essential?

8. What characteristic and accomplishments make Rufus King the most impressive of the delegates from Massachusetts?

9. What arguments do James Madison present in his rebuttal of the New Jersey plan?

10. What is the Committee of the Whole?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

James Madison is labeled the "Father of Constitution". Describe Madison's role in the development and ratification of the Constitution, indicating whether or not he is deserving of this title. If you do not believe Madison deserves that label, propose a more deserving candidate for the title and support your choice with evidence.

Essay Topic 2

Throughout the book, Bowen refers to interactions between European countries and the United States. What evidence does she present about past events? What evidence does she show about the contemporary situation? What fears do the delegates express about the relationship - past, present, and future - between the states and Europe? How do the relationships between the United States and England and France shape the final Constitution? In a well-crafted essay, describe the relationships between the United States and European countries, with careful attention to how those relationship influence the final Constitution.

Essay Topic 3

Although the Constitution is eventually ratified by all of the states, there is opposition in each state. Write an essay that presents and explains the reasons for opposition to the Constitution presented by the delegates in each of the state conventions. Analyze the validity of their reasoning, placing your analysis in historical context. How do the supporters of the Constitution address these concerns?

(see the answer keys)

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