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. To whom does Marsile pray?

2. Who brought news to Charlemagne?

3. Who does Ganelon refer to as a "courteous paladin?"

4. What plagues the soldiers on the field?

5. Archbishop Turpin kills which mystical Saracen?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Marsile want Charlemagne to do? What is Marsile's promise?

2. Who objects to the plan of sending more soldiers to attack Charlemagne? Why is the objection raised? What is Marsile's response?

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

4. What is Marsile's attitude toward Charlemagne? How will the King approach his rival?

5. What is the final plan that will allow Marsile to defeat Charlemagne's men?

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. Why does Marsile ask his counselors for help? Who comes up with a plan?

8. What happens when Charlemagne hears the call? How does the Emperor respond to his nephew's call for help?

9. How do Marsile's messengers intend to deceive Charlemagne? Why do they think the Emperor will fall for it?

10. What does Ganelon tell Blancandrin of Charlemagne's plans?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

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 2

Charlemagne finally learns of Ganelon's crimes. How does Charlemagne find out? What is the Emperor's reaction toward Ganelon? How is Ganelon's fate finally decided? What is the final punishment for the traitor?

Essay Topic 3

In many ways, Charlemagne and Marsile represent the age old battle of good vs. evil. What liberties does the author take with details to prove that God is on Charlemagne's side? How does Marsile rely upon his religion like Charlemagne relies upon Christianity? Compare and contrast the behavior of each side and how they prepare for war.

(see the answer keys)

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