Sinuhe the Egyptian: A Novel Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Mika Waltari
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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. What does Sinuhe do with the scarab that he finds?

2. How many men and boys are in Sinuhe's class at the House of Life?

3. What gift does Nefernefernefer give to Sinuhe when they first meet?

4. What color are Nefernefernefer's eyes?

5. When Sinuhe turns seven to what event does his mother take him?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the scarab to Kaptah? What is the scarab to Sinuhe? How do the two belief systems differ? How does Kaptah anoint the scarab?

2. Explain the process that Sinuhe is taught in school about life after death. Who is Osiris? Who is the Devourer? What does the Devourer look like? Who is the Backward-Gazer? Why is this important knowledge for the average Egyptian?

3. As the novel progresses, Kaptah begins to refer to the property of Sinuhe as "our" as in "our" house, "our" scarab and even "our" gold. What does this indicate to the reader? Does Sinuhe seem aware of these changes? If he does, does he care? Why? Why not? What does this say about their relationship?

4. Why does Sinuhe feel that Mitanni is doomed? Where is Mitanni in relation to other countries? Why does this mean extinction for these people?

5. Sinuhe speaks of a remedy from the Hittites that cures the body of heat. What is this remedy called today? How do you think the Hittites created this drug?

6. What are the two truths of the young prince and Horemheb? How are they in conflict from the beginning? How does Horemheb argue with the sickly young prince about his truth when he first meets him? What does Horemheb fear of the future?

7. By his description of his servant, Keftiu, Sinuhe's opinion of women comes to light. What does he think of Keftiu? What does this tell the reader about his opinion of women in general?

8. Why do Kipa and Senmut tell their neighbors that Kipa gave birth to Sinuhe? Why does Senmut register Sinuhe in the book of births? What will this do for Sinuhe later in life? What difference will this make in his life?

9. Why does Senmut take Sinuhe to meet Inteb, the warrior? What lesson does Senmut want Sinuhe to leave with?

10. When Sinuhe says that a man who knows the Babylonian language can be understood throughout the world, what does this say about Babylon? If Egypt is the most powerful land on earth, then why would the Egyptian language be the most important language? What does this say about politics of the time?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Throughout the novel, the author makes direct references to the bible. He uses exact terms like, "they know not what they do" when referring to the priests. What other biblical references do you see in the novel? Why do you think the author felt it was important to interject these references when telling the story?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the friendships in the novel. Who are childhood friends and who are long-time friends? How does this affect behavior? Give examples from the novel of how friendships affect power.

Essay Topic 3

The idea of the Hittites is "Right is what we desire and wrong is what our neighbors desire." How does this philosophy outline their ideas about war?

(see the answer keys)

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