Mythology 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. Zeus and the other gods took over when Zeus dethroned ____________ and seized his power.

2. The Titan called Cronus fought his father and took his power. Fearing that his children would do the same when they grew up, what did he do to each newborn baby?

3. The main gods, or ______________, lived on Mount Olympus.

4. Hercules undertook ______________ seemingly impossible tasks for King Eurystheus of Mycenae in order to punish and purify himself for the murder of his family.

5. Why was refusing someone a burial a serious affront to the gods?

Short Essay Questions

1. What are two ancient sources that can be used to study Greek mythology? How is each of these sources useful?

2. Describe Greek heroes. What was the most common flaw? Is this a common flaw in humanity? Why or why not?

3. Why was Perseus famous? Does this make him a hero? Why or why not?

4. How did Hercules purify himself? Do you see this as being necessary? Why or why not?

5. Choose one of the love stories in this section. Summarize this story. How does it reflect someone's jealousy?

6. Choose another love story from this section. How does this story show control or the lack of control?

7. What is the lesson that is to be learned in the story of Phaeton? How is this an important lesson?

8. What ended when Atalanta was married? What does this reinforce in Greek culture?

9. How were early royal Greek families able to claim lineage with the gods? How might they have benefited from this?

10. Should Greek mythology be understood as a bible of sorts? Why or why not?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Murder frequently takes place in Greek mythology.

Part 1) Describe two stories in which a murder or murders take place. Why do these murders take place? How do these murders affect the other characters in the story? How might the murders affect those who hear this story?

Part 2) Is murder a popular theme of American folk tales? Why or why not? What does this reveal about the Greeks? What does this reveal about Americans? How does this theme of murder add to the drama and tragedy of Greek mythology?

Part 3) What do you believe is the most popular of themes in American tales? Use at least two stories to support this belief. Why is this a popular theme? What does this reveal about Americans?

Essay Topic 2

Jason was the hero who set out to retrieve the Golden Fleece.

Part 1) Why did he set out to do this? What challenges did he face along the way? What led to these challenges? How did these challenges affect Jason? How did this adventure make him a hero in the eyes of the Greeks?

Part 2) How did Jason and his adventures compare to those of other heroes discussed in this book? Why did similarities exist? How do these similarities help one to determine the requirements of a Greek hero? Why did differences exist between Jason and other heroes? What does this also reveal about all Greek heroes?

Part 3) How do Jason and other Greek heroes compare to heroes, both real and fictional, in our own culture today? Do you see Jason and others as heroes? Why or why not? What is your definition of a hero? What is required to make someone a hero?

Essay Topic 3

By the 5th century BC, the Greeks were beginning to doubt the truth of the myths.

Part 1)Describe the Greeks myths up to this point. How might the Greeks have been affected by these myths? Why might the Greeks have begun to doubt the validity of the myths? What does this reveal about the Greeks of the 5th century BC?

Part 2) How did this doubt affect Greek mythology and the Greek gods? Who played a large role in spreading this doubt? Why did they want to spread doubt?

Part 3) How have modern religions be affected by feelings of doubt? How do modern religions deal with feelings of doubt among its believers, as well as outsiders? Would you consider these world religions to be myths, similar to Greek mythology? Why or why not?

(see the answer keys)

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