Symposium 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. How is the muse, Urania, described in Eryximachus' speech?

2. According to Phaedrus' story, how could Achilles have avoided death?

3. How does Pausanius describe the countries of Elis and Boeotia?

4. Who firsts requests drinking in moderation at the party?

5. Where is Socrates before entering Agathon's house?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the difference in the loves that Pausanias describes?

2. What effect does love have on nature and the seasons, as mentioned in the end of Eryximachus' speech?

3. What is the purpose of love, according to Eryximachus?

4. What is the description of the creature that Aristophanes gives at the beginning of his speech?

5. What advice does Eryximachus have for Aristophanes before he starts speaking?

6. How does Socrates first appear when he is introduced in the Symposium?

7. Who are the parents of love, according to Pausanias?

8. How does Orpheus become an example used by Phaedrus to depict what not to do?

9. How does Phaedrum describe love at the beginning of his speech?

10. What are the different types of the creatures that Aristophanes speaks about?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Socrates' introduction establishes his personality and reputation.

1) Describe how Socrates is first introduced as he talks with Aristodemus.

2) Explain why Socrates fears crowds and how that adds to his philosophical demeanor.

3) Describe the topics of conversation between Socrates and Aristodemus on their way to the party, the people quoted, and the points made.

4) Explain how and why Socrates disappears upon arriving at Agathon's house.

Essay Topic 2

After a brief argument with Socrates, Agathon gives his speech.

1) Explain how Agathon disagrees with Phaedrus.

2) Describe what the characteristics of love are, according to Agathon.

3) Explain how Agathon's reputation for being a playwright might have influenced his thoughts and views about love.

4) Describe the effect that love can have on people as they are given in Agathon's speech.

Essay Topic 3

Before Socrates starts giving his speech on love, he takes the time to make some observations about the other speeches and preface his own.

1) Analyze Socrates' opinions of the other speeches in general, including the compliments he has for them, along with the way he dismisses them.

2) Describe Socrates' comments about Agathon's speech.

3) Explain the irony in Socrates' assumption that the speeches should contain the truth and the way that he prepares the guests for his speech.

4) Describe why Socrates is compelled to speak the truth as he understands it, his lack of concern for who it might offend, and how that adds to his reputation.

(see the answer keys)

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