Roman Blood Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Steven Saylor
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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. In Cicero's opinion, why is the other man prosecuting his client?

2. When Gordianus starts to question Polia, Eco________________.

3. When Gordianus leaves Caecilia Metella's house in Chapter 7, what does he observe Tiro doing?

4. Who claims to have seen the murder?

5. What clues are provided in Chapter 3 to indicate Cicero's class?

Short Essay Questions

1. Explain why Caecilia would house Sextus Roscius (filius) in an unsavory part of her house, near the stinking indoor toilets.

2. What elements of Cicero's home seem to contradict one another?

3. In Chapter 5, Cicero says to Tiro, "A fit subject for debate: Is it possible that a slave can be too loyal to his master? That is to say, too enthusiastic in his devotion, too ready to spring to his master's defense." What is your answer to that question?

4. When Gordianus and Tiro see the tenement fire, what is the significance of that?

5. Why would the shopkeeper and his wife lie about witnessing the attack of Roscius?

6. How would you describe Caecilia Metella?

7. Why does Bethesda bite Gordianus when he comes into her room?

8. Electra tells Gordianus and Tiro that some men bought Elena. What else does she reveal?

9. Why does Polia think she is protecting Eco by lying about him witnessing the attack?

10. Do you think Gauis's death was accidental or a murder? Why?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Roman Blood has several "family feuds." Analyze the feuds and their place in the plot.

Essay Topic 2

Sexuality in Roman society seems to have been very open, and openly discussed and viewed. Discuss some of the episodes in which sexuality is important or comes into play, especially where it actively impacts the plot.

Essay Topic 3

What purpose does the story of Crassus and his pursuit of property serve in this novel?

(see the answer keys)

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