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 the only thing capable of destroying the Ring in Tolkien's story?
(a) A certain magical spell.
(b) A special type of fire.
(c) The water from a specific river.
(d) The power generated from another ring.

2. How does Tolkien describe the change that he has made to his manuscript in Letter #129?
(a) Reversible.
(b) Final.
(c) Perfect.
(d) Negotiable.

3. What book inspired a schoolboy to write to Tolkien, prompting his response in Letter #114?
(a) <i>The Hobbit</i>.
(b) <i>The Lord of the Rings</i>.
(c) <i>Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics</i>.
(d) <i>The Silmarillion</i>.

4. How many academic articles is Tolkien a writer for, as referred to in "The Professor"?
(a) Over twenty.
(b) At least ten.
(c) At least one.
(d) At least twenty.

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

Short Answer Questions

1. Where does the conversation about accents take place that Tolkien discusses in his letter to Christopher?

2. As Tolkien explains in Letter #131, what motivates The Enemy in his stories?

3. Who provides input , feedback, and advice for the letters in the book?

4. What is the result of a friendship between the Elves and the Dwarves, as Tolkien explains in Letter #131?

5. Based on the information in the Introduction, how many chapters does the book have?

Short Essay Questions

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

2. What does Tolkien think about Frodo's breakdown at the Cracks of Doom being considered a moral failure?

3. How does Tolkien refer to <i>The Hobbit<i> in his early letters to Christopher?

4. How does Tolkien characterize Sauron in Letter #131?

5. What are galleys in literature and how does Tolkien respond to the editing process of <i>The Lord of the Rings</i>?

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

7. Who is Tolkien writing to when he predicts what would happen if Gandalf had worn the Ring, and what is his prediction?

8. What message does Tolkien hear when he is becoming impatient about the publishing of <i>The Lord of the Rings</i>?

9. How does Allen & Unwin respond to Tolkien's opinion of the cover images?

10. What are the Stages of History that Tolkien describes in Letter #131?

(see the answer keys)

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