Pale Fire 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. In the commentary to Line 137, what phrase, used by John Shade in "Pale Fire", does Kinbote claim has no real meaning?
(a) caramen.
(b) lemniscate.
(c) Waxing slain.
(d) unicrursal.

2. In lines 936 and 937 of "Pale Fire" the phrase "I plow Old Zembla's fields" is used by John Shade as part of a metaphor for what literal activity?
(a) His relationship with his wife.
(b) The changing seasons.
(c) Revisiting his Zemblan ancestry .
(d) Shaving.

3. How do the people of Zembla aid in King Charles' flight?
(a) They dress like him to serve as decoys.
(b) They create a distraction with a hot air balloon.
(c) They provide Charles refuge along the way.
(d) They fight off the Extremists.

4. Who is King Alfin the Vague's son?
(a) Charles Kinbote.
(b) King Charles.
(c) John Shade.
(d) Dr. Sutton.

5. John Shade's daughter is how old at the beginning of Canto Three?
(a) 18.
(b) A senior in high school.
(c) We don't know exactly, only that she's a small child.
(d) 6 months.

Short Answer Questions

1. "Forty ounces of fine sand" describes what in Canto One?

2. Which of the following has Shade renounced?

3. Which Pope is mentioned in the commentary to Line 85?

4. Where was the foreword written?

5. How do the extremists learn the King has escaped?

Short Essay Questions

1. Briefly describe Fleur.

2. What does John Shade ponder in the beginning of Canto Two?

3. What is Kinbote's secret?

4. How does Charles Kinbote portray himself in the foreword?

5. Give a brief synopsis of King Charles' escape.

6. How is Kinbote critical of Professor Hurley?

7. What are two major criticisms John Shade has of his students? How is this ironic?

8. How does Kinbote characterize his relationship with John Shade?

9. What is significant about the bird in Canto One?

10. What was the original use of the secret passageway in the Zemblan castle? Where does it lead?

(see the answer keys)

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