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. In Book 7, why does Athena cloak Odysseus in clouds on his walk to the palace?

2. What is happening in Lacedaemon when Telemachus arrives?

3. After his battle with Poseidon in Book 5, where does Odysseus find shelter in the land on which he has just arrived?

4. What does Telemachus seek from the assembly above all?

5. In Book 6, what instructions does Nausicaa give her maids regarding Odysseus?

Short Essay Questions

1. How is Odysseus discovered by the maids of Phaecia?

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

3. In Book 20, what has happened to Telemachus now that Odysseus has returned?

4. Why does Odysseus tell Polyphemus his true name?

5. Which men support Telemachus at the assembly in Book 2? Why do they support him, and how are they treated by the others?

6. From Helen and Menelaus' stories, what can be said about Odysseus?

7. Enumerate Telemachus' problem - why has he called the leaders of Ithaca together?

8. In Book 20, why does Athene make the suitors laugh uncontrollably?

9. Recount the most recent part of Odysseus' story of woe, as told in Book 7.

10. Does Nausicaa act properly towards Odysseus when giving aid in Book 6?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Most literary works have an antagonist. Is there one in The Odyssey? Explain your answer using the text.

Essay Topic 2

As one of the first epic poems of the Western world, The Odyssey is the model from which scholars have dissected and labeled other poems that have followed. Identify the poetic conventions of the epic poem, providing examples from the text to support its use as the model.

Essay Topic 3

Vengeance and/or law being exercised fuel much of the action in this epic poem. It is an act of vengeance, which keeps Odysseus so long from his homeland? It is an act of vengeance, which slaughters the suitors? It is vengeance, which moves half the men of Ithaca to attack Odysseus on the farm? Where does the death of Odysseus' crew for the cattle of the Sun fit in? Why does Athena condone the slaughter of the suitors? Select three of these acts. Analyze each act, making sure to include mitigating factors, and determine which are criminal and which are legitimate.

(see the answer keys)

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