The Old Man and the Sea Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. Santiago is pinned down and the line is rushing out around his back and through his hand, cutting them. What makes him think about the boy?
(a) The boy would harpoon the marlin as it jumped out of the water.
(b) The boy would talk to him and keep him awake.
(c) The boy would have kept the line wet so that they did not cut his hands.
(d) The boy would have taken over for him and let him go back to sleep.

2. What does the fisherman say about the marlin to the boy?
(a) I need a tape to measure this fish.
(b) There is nothing left but head, tail, and bones.
(c) He was eighteen feet from nose to tail.
(d) Why would the old man bring back only bones?

3. How do the brown sharks attack the old man's fish?
(a) Both of them dive and attack the fish from under the water.
(b) One dives under the boat while the other comes from the surface.
(c) They attack the marlin from the head and tail.
(d) They dart in quickly and swim away with small bites.

4. What does Santiago think is unjust but something he must do?
(a) Cut the marlin loose and go back saying he had another day of bad luck.
(b) Kill the great fish on the end of his line.
(c) Act strange for the boy.
(d) Eat more raw fish to survive.

5. After the second brown shark is killed, what does it do?
(a) It jumps into the boat with Santiago.
(b) It pulls the marlin down with its lifeless body to the bottom of the sea.
(c) It pulls the skiff over by its dead weight.
(d) It hangs onto the place where it had bit into the marlin.

Short Answer Questions

1. What idea does Santiago have to help tire the marlin out?

2. Santiago recalls catching marlin that weighed over a thousand pounds. Why is this time different?

3. When the marlin slows and is steady, Santiago finally gets some sleep. What does he dream of instead of lions?

4. What is the one thing not beautiful about the Mako shark?

5. Why do the sharks finally go away?

Short Essay Questions

1. Toward the end of the second day, Santiago assesses his situation and thinks he has several new advantages. What are they?

2. There is something almost religious about Santiago's walk to his shack after landing with the bones of the marlin. Describe it.

3. How does the man-of-war bird help Santiago catch an albacore?

4. Describe the last moments that define the valor of the great marlin.

5. Since the fish is too large to fit into the boat, how does Santiago plan on getting it back to shore?

6. Why did Santiago give up arm wrestling?

7. Relate the speech the boy makes to show his estimation of Santiago as a fisherman.

8. Why is the story about an old man instead of a young one?

9. It is now the next day and Santiago had brought no provisions for a meal at sea. What does he have to eat?

10. Why can the old man not let go of the line as the big fish tows his skiff farther out to sea?

(see the answer keys)

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