The Song of Roland 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. Ganelon proposes that Marsile send what to Charlemagne?

2. What plagues the soldiers on the field?

3. What city did Marsile's soldier Valdabron take by treason?

4. Ganelon recommends that Marsile send "five score thousand" pagans to defeat the troops left behind. How many is "five score thousand?"

5. What event will be celebrated with Charlemagne?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is Charlemagne's reaction when the governors and nobles approach him with the idea that Ganelon should be spared? What happens next?

2. How does Baligant make a comeback against Charlemagne's army? What was Charlemagne's reaction?

3. What happened when two of Charlemagne's counts went to Marsile to try and take over Saragossa? Which two counts went on the mission?

4. What was Oliver using to fight long after it was broken? Why did Oliver not use another implement?

5. What is foretold at the end of Stanza XII? Who is supposedly responsible for the upcoming event?

6. How does Charlemagne react to the news from Blancandrin?

7. What is Charlemagne's response to the end of the seven year's war with Spain?

8. Which city remains the property of another King? Which King is it?

9. Oliver goes ahead to act as look out. What does Oliver see and how does it affect the French soldiers' plans?

10. What does Ganelon propose to Marsile on behalf of Charlemagne?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In order to decide if Ganelon should be executed, there is a battle between Thierry and Pinabel. The battle is also a metaphor for good versus evil, much like the battle fought between Roland and Marsile and Charlemagne and Baligant. Compare and contrast the three battles and their outcomes.

Essay Topic 2

In several parts of the poem, references are made to the swords belonging to various warriors, including Charlemagne, Roland, Oliver, Turpin, and Marsile. What is the significance of the sword in context with the story? Why did the soldiers give names to their swords? Why did Roland try to destroy his sword just before he died?

Essay Topic 3

The trio of Charlemagne, Roland and Oliver is a metaphor for the Holy Trinity. When Charlemagne leaves Roland and Oliver alone with the troops, who assumes the third position? Was the choice obvious? How is it that Charlemagne's people are or are not protected in the Emperor's absence?

(see the answer keys)

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