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. Who is the first person to volunteer to go to Saragossa?

2. How many hostages will be presented?

3. What is Ganelon's plan once he reaches Saragossa?

4. What color were the feathers on Marsile's dart?

5. What is Roland's position?

Short Essay Questions

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

2. Which of Charlemagne's men became enraged and what was Charlemagne's reaction? How was this reaction different than one referred to in an earlier stanza?

3. Who is Baligant and why does he go to Saragossa? What are the consequences if Baligant refuses?

4. How was Ganelon greeted when he approached Saragossa?

5. Marsile nearly makes a fatal mistake when devising the first plan. What is the initial plan and what was the mistake?

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

7. What is the purpose of Archbishop Turpin's presence? What does Turpin do while at the camp?

8. Where does Charlemagne find Roland? What is unusual about Roland's body?

9. What causes Marsile and Ganelon to argue? What is the result of the argument?

10. What does Charlemagne do to ensure that Bromimonde converts to Christianity? How does Bromimonde respond to the treatment?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The battle between Marsile and Charlemagne is actual and metaphoric. Examine the conflict between the kingdoms, their politics and their difference in religious beliefs. How do the latter affect the way the soldiers fight? How did the preparations (or lack thereof) affect the outcome of the battles?

Essay Topic 2

Before the war begins, Marsile summons fellow warrior and pagan Baligant to come to his aid. Baligant's trip is long, which affects Marsile's plan. Marsile also had to use coercion to get Baligant to come to Saragossa. What is the personal relationship between Marsile and Baligant? Where was Baligant's home? How did Baligant travel? What was used to coerce Baligant to go to Marsile's aid?

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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