Murder in the Cathedral Test | Final Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. According to Beckett, who was the Lord speaking to when he said, "My peace I leave you, my peace I give unto you?"

2. What was NOT one of the events that Becket describes in the lives of the disciples?

3. What does Beckett see himself as, in reference to his definitions of martyrdom?

4. What would be the most likely reaction of the Canterbury people that this is Beckett's last sermon?

5. What, according to Beckett, is reenacted during Mass?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The Interlude serves the important role of allowing the reader to see Beckett's point of view on martyrdom. His sermon argues the importance of martyrs in society and why he understands God's plan in the sacrifices they have made.

1) Study Becket's arguments carefully. Does he seem absolutely certain of his own death?

2) Why does Becket feel he will prove to be a martyr to his people if he dies?

3) Why does Becket seem to accept his fate so readily?

4) Conclude why Becket chose to use his last sermon to explain his actions (i.e. accepting his fate).

Essay Topic 2

From the moment the play opens, there is an ominous approaching event that culminates in the murder of Thomas Becket. Throughout the play, several characters continue to foreshadow Becket's murder, including Becket himself.

1) Cite several examples of foreshadowing from the text and describe the importance of this as a tool of the plot and the building of characters.

2) Do you believe that knowing about the death of Thomas Becket from the beginning lessens the effectiveness of the climax or strengthens it? Do you believe Eliot's choice made Murder in the Cathedral an effective story?

Essay Topic 3

Choose two of the characters from the play excluding Becket. Compare and contrast the following aspects of the characters:

Part 1) Their social standing.

Part 2) Their political views.

Part 3) Their religious beliefs.

Now describe how these traits affect their opinion of Becket and his actions in the play. How are their opinions different? How are they similar?

(see the answer keys)

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