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 request is made of Tolkien after he finishes Farmer Giles of Ham?
(a) That he remove two of the characters.
(b) That he edit some of the book to make it shorter.
(c) That he write more stories to make a large volume.
(d) That he adds to the ending to make it more complete.

2. What two factors contribute to the main part of Letter #66 to Christopher?
(a) Fiction and the idea of living in an imaginary world.
(b) Real life and the idea of living in an imaginary world.
(c) Fiction and the writing of an imaginary world.
(d) Real life and the writing of an imaginary world.

3. What does Tolkien suggest is the greatest resource for the information the schoolboy is seeking in Letter #114?
(a) Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics.
(b) The Hobbit.
(c) The Silmarillion.
(d) The Lord of the Rings.

4. In describing the power of the pen, what aspect of fiction writing does Tolkien refer to when explaining his own writing process and the way he invents characters?
(a) The extensive research done before writing.
(b) The extensive reading of other fiction done before writing.
(c) The predictability of it.
(d) The unpredictability of it.

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

Short Answer Questions

1. What do the letters selected for "To Unwin about The Hobbit" have in common?

2. With whom does Tolkien work in order to avoid the responsibilities of chairing the English department?

3. Which school is Tolkien attending when the first letter begins?

4. How much time has passed between Tolkien's initial idea for drawing maps and when it becomes an issue with a publisher?

5. In Letter #27, which of the following does Tolkien say that he will leave the drawing of to someone who can draw ?

Short Essay Questions

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

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

3. How does Tolkien design Farmer Giles of Ham and what does he think about it being considered a children's story?

4. What clarification does Tolkien make about the word, "Elves"?

5. What happened when the Elves and the Dwarves became friends in the past of Tolkien's fictional realm?

6. How does Tolkien explain the role of humans and mankind in his stories in Letter #131?

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

8. What is the One Ring of Power in Tolkien's stories?

9. How can the One Ring of Power be destroyed?

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

(see the answer keys)

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