Riders of the Purple Sage 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. Who founded the town of Cottonwood?

2. When Jane greets Lassiter and Venters, she has news from town about Tull. What is it?

3. When Jane hears that her riders left her, she prays. What does she vow after her wrathful prayer?

4. What does Lassiter say when Jane offers him to be a rider for her?

5. When Venters goes to the cliff dweller's cave the first time, what does he find?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does Jane keep Milly's grave overgrown and hidden?

2. Who is the "unseen hand" and what role is he playing in what is happening to Jane and her ranch? Why is the "unseen hand" at work?

3. How is Tull different than the man he pretends to be? How does he play both ends of his conspiracy against Jane?

4. In Chapter 4, why does Judkins say that it is not normal for rustlers to shoot at a rider? Is this a code of ethics or standards practiced by the riders in this story? What does it mean?

5. As Bess tells Venters of her relationship with Oldring, does she seem haunted? What about her past does not match with the girl that Venters is getting to know? Is Venters having trouble seeing both sides of Bess? Are there two sides to Bess?

6. Venters goes every day to Deception Pass and practices with his guns. Before the opening incident with Tull, who did he think was after him? Why did he feel the need to practice with his guns?

7. When Venters carries Bess up the pass to the hidden valley, he experiences a new strength. What is this strength? What is the source of Venters strength?

8. Bess tells Venters that she has memories of women and children. Who do you think these people were? What do you think their relationship was with Bess?

9. Once Venters reaches Surprise Valley he skins the rabbit and saves the hide? Why would he want to keep this hide? What feeling is Venters trying to capture and hang on to?

10. In Utah the Mormons are usually prosperous, while the Gentiles barely make enough to eat. Do you think Jane's father made his money in a way that hurt or used Gentiles in the area?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What is the symbolism of the horses? Describe the bet about the fastest horse. Why does Venters lie when Jane asked which horse was the fastest? What is the meaning of Venters shooting Wrangle?

Essay Topic 2

Is the character of Oldring good or bad? Describe the stories about Oldring that are bad. Describe the stories about Oldring that are good. In the end, how do you feel about this character? Can you imagine this story without him? Why? Why not?

Essay Topic 3

During the race between Venters and Jerry Card, several pieces of chivalry and honor are used as a guideline to a code of conduct of which both men are aware. When this story was first published, do you think more people understood the rules of engagement for an event such as this? Do we understand it today? How are these rules different and the same as today?

(see the answer keys)

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