The Consolation of Philosophy 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. Why does Philosophy say that material possessions are relatively insignificant?

2. What does Philosophy say of Fortune?

3. How tall is the woman that appears in Boethius' cell?

4. What does Philosophy tell Boethius about his situation?

5. What does Philosophy say about Fortune's treatment of men?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does the woman say about Fortune not being malicious at the end of Book II?

2. Who does the woman compare herself to and what is her identity?

3. Why does Boethius praise God?

4. What does the woman remind Boethius of in regards to the events and his attitude?

5. Why does the woman praise Boethius' former way of life in comparison to his present situation?

6. Why does Boethius disagree with the woman regarding misery and what is her rebuttal?

7. What is the significance of the woman's discussion with Boethius on blessings when Boethius complains about the tangibility of his pain?

8. Why does the woman urge Boethius to break his silence?

9. What does Lady Philosophy disagree with his view on providence at the end of Book 1?

10. What is the significance of the title, "The Consolation of Philosophy"?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Boethius discusses God as the attainment of perfect happiness in Book III. Discuss how Boethius tries to prove God's existence based on our inadequate desires and true happiness. Students should discuss why Boethius believes seeking happiness through earthly desires is futile. Students should use the text to support their statements.

Essay Topic 2

Boethius was influenced by Stoicism. Discuss the influence that Stoicism had on Boethius and his writing of "The Consolation of Philosophy". Students may use secondary sources as well as a primary text to develop their conclusions.

Essay Topic 3

Boethius defines a person as an individual substance with an inherent rational nature. Discuss the impact that his definition had on philosophy and how this statement is still discussed today. Students should use the text to support their discussion and include secondary sources as needed.

(see the answer keys)

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