Tales from Shakespeare 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. What earl helps the mad Lear escape to France?

2. What do Goneril and Regan immediately deny King Lear after he has given up his crown?

3. In As You Like it, how does Oliver plan to kill Orlando after his initial plan fails?

4. In The Tempest, where on the island do Sycorax imprison good spirits?

5. What is the root of Oberon and Titania's feud in A Midsummer Night's Dream?

Short Essay Questions

1. In A Midsummer Night's Dream, how does Oberon change the hearts of the Athenian youths?

2. What is the problem among the young lovers at the beginning of A Midsummer Night's Dream?

3. How do Antonio and Shylock lend money differently in Merchant of Venice?

4. How does Oliver try to kill Orlando in As You Like It?

5. How does Posthumus return to Britain at the end of Cymbeline?

6. How is Paulita saved from death at a young age in The Winter's Tale?

7. Why does Macbeth kill Banquo?

8. How does Lady Macbeth convince Macbeth to kill Duncan?

9. Under what circumstances does Lear go mad?

10. In The Tempest, how does Prospero bring his enemies to the island?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In A Midsummer Night's Dream, Shakespeare famously said the course of true love never did run smooth. Write an essay charting the arc of a particularly tumultuous courtship in one of the stories. What two characters are in love, and what obstacles prevent their complete happiness? How do they respond to these obstacles? Do they over come them or break apart from each other? Through this courtship, what is Shakespeare saying about romance and commitment?

Essay Topic 2

Many of Shakespeare's stories take place in the court of ruling people. In such stories - like Cymbeline, Macbeth, King Lear, or Hamlet - the acquisition power is the driver of conflict. Write an essay charting the way power changes hands in three such stories. Who loses power who should control it? What usurper or group of usurpers takes power, and how is this unnatural acquisition reighted by the end of the narrative?

Essay Topic 3

In many of his stories, Shakespeare juxtaposes two individuals who are close either as siblings or dear friends. He juxtaposes them through their actions, which reveal character. Write an essay about three of the stories in the collection in which pairs of characters are juxtaposed. What actions does Shakespeare use to juxtapose these characters? What is revealed through this juxtaposition? Do the characters become more or less similar as the story continues?

(see the answer keys)

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