River God Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Wilbur Smith
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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. Why is Taita valuable to Lord Intef?

2. What is ironic about the double crown of Egypt that Pharaoh wears?

3. Contrary to Pharaoh's plans, why does Lostris set out to charm him?

4. What happens when Taita approaches Lord Intef to explain Lostris's love for Tanus?

5. In the pageant duel with Rasfer, why does Tanus not kill Rasfer?

Short Essay Questions

1. What are Taita's first descriptions of Lostris? How are his emotions different from what the reader might expect of a eunuch? How does it help explain his character?

2. What scheme does Taita dream up to help Tanus engage the Shrikes in battle for the first time? How is this scheme something that perhaps only Taita would think of?

3. What is the significance of the double crown of Egypt? Why might Taita mention it so often when he describes Pharaoh?

4. What is the immediate effect as Tanus begins to rout the Shrikes? How does this change affect people's loyalty to Pharaoh? What do you think might be the long-term effects of this new loyalty?

5. Why is Taita angered when he sees Lord Intef in Thebes? What does this reveal to the reader about Taita's character?

6. When the people cry out to Pharaoh to give Tanus mercy from the death sentence, what does Pharaoh do? What leads to this decision? Does it show Pharaoh's mercy or his weakness?

7. What danger does Taita find in his basket of pomegranates and mangoes? What does this danger say about his place in society?

8. What condition is Tanus in when Taita finally finds him? How is this condition similar to Lostris's desire for death on her wedding night? How is Taita able to save Tanus in much the same way he saved Lostris?

9. Explain Tanus's bow Lanata. How does this story about the weapon reveal Tanus's character?

10. Why does Lostris want to die on her wedding night? Does Taita respond properly to her demands for poison? Why?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Taita notes the battle with the Hyksos as the end of an era (pg 313). What does he mean by this? Why does he think this is true? In the end, is he right?

Essay Topic 2

Twice Taita wishes that he could retract the evil he had spoken: Lostris's marriage and the coming of the Hyksos. How effective is this as a literary technique? Does it build suspense for the reader or diminish it? How does it change the reader's expectations for what happens next in the novel?

Essay Topic 3

Why does Taita question the value of treasure-laden tombs? Is he right to question the tombs? How is his judgment unclouded while Pharaoh's is caught up only in his funerary treasure (152, 365)?

(see the answer keys)

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