The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. What is Allen & Unwin?
(a) A law firm.
(b) A printing service.
(c) A publishing house.
(d) A bank.

2. Which school is Tolkien attending when the first letter begins?
(a) Cambridge.
(b) Oxford.
(c) Harvard.
(d) Yale.

3. How does Tolkien feel when he looks at his work in the revision stages?
(a) Confused.
(b) Defiant.
(c) Grateful.
(d) Humbled.

4. What German word meaning "essential" does Tolkien refer to in Letter #6, stating that it is actually viewed as an English word?
(a) Grundlegend.
(b) Unentbehrlich.
(c) Wesenhaft.
(d) Entscheidend.

5. How many other men are traveling with Tolkien during his conversation about accents?
(a) Three.
(b) Five.
(c) Two.
(d) Four.

Short Answer Questions

1. How many times do the Elves and the Dwarves share an enduring friendship throughout their history?

2. Who provides the main order of the letters included in the book?

3. What does Tolkien offer to the schoolboy in Letter #114?

4. Which of the following is the main thing that separates the Hobbits and the enemy?

5. Whom does Tolkien originally ask to draw maps for the imaginary world of The Lord of the Rings?

Short Essay Questions

1. In Letters #66 and #69, how is Tolkien's relationship with Christopher defined?

2. How is Tolkien's proficiency in writing displayed in the story he tells to Christopher in his April 3, 1944, letter?

3. What psychological dilemma does Tolkien discuss about the Elves in Letter #131?

4. What is the power of the pen and how does Tolkien explain it?

5. How does Rayner Unwin first contact Tolkien, leading to his involvement with publishing The Lord of the Rings?

6. What change does Tolkien consider and eventually make to The Hobbit in Letters #128 and #129, and why is it significant?

7. Who is Tolkien traveling with in the story he recounts for Christopher in a letter from April 3, 1944, and what is the point of the story?

8. What is unique about Tolkien's poem, "Errantry"?

9. What stipulation does Tolkien have in working with Allen & Unwin on publishing The Lord of the Rings trilogy, and what request do they have for him?

10. How does Tolkien describe the development of his penchant for stories in Letter #130?

(see the answer keys)

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