The Odyssey 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. How did Odysseus anger the god(dess) who seeks to punish him in Book 1?

2. According to Nestor, who wanted the Achaeans to suffer on the way home from Troy?

3. Who gets Telemachus' supplies of wine and barley for his quest?

4. In addition to offering advice, what else does Mentes from Taphos give to Telemachus?

5. Why was Menelaus late returning from Troy?

Short Essay Questions

1. What relationship do the Phaecians have with the gods?

2. What kind of hospitality does Telemachus offer the old man in Book 16?

3. Is the ending satisfying to readers? Why or why not?

4. How does Calypso feel about releasing Odysseus?

5. In what ways was Odysseus' naming prophetic?

6. What is interesting in Penelope's appearance to the suitors after the boxing match between Odysseus and Irus?

7. Odysseus tells his men about the Sirens. Why doesn't he share Circe's information and advice about Scylla and Charybdis?

8. Why does Menelaus mourn so much for Odysseus?

9. According to Nestor and Menelaus, was the war worth the cost?

10. Is the punishment of the slave maids in Book 22 just and reasonable?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Penelope uses two devices that delay making a decision about marriage and manipulate the suitors. Appraise the effectiveness of each device towards her overall goal. Upon what does each rely? What does each device reveal about her potential husband? Evaluate which device was most useful for her purposes.

Essay Topic 2

The Odyssey contains a dark side; Odysseus faces many monsters, a witch, and the underworld. What do these elements symbolize and why are they important for Odysseus to experience? Use the text to support your answer.

Essay Topic 3

Sociologists can glean quite a bit of information about a culture from surviving literature. Use The Odyssey to illuminate the values of this society. What ideals are valued? What are some distinguishing characteristic of the Ancient Achaeans?

(see the answer keys)

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