The Mask of Command Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

John Keegan
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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. When was Alexander born?

2. Once Wellington took the reins, he had participated in an average of how many battles per year, not counting the years taken off during peacetime or tending to other duties?

3. The inner core of the army was __________________, comprised of about three thousand men, two thousand of which rode into Asia.

4. How much did Wellington leave to chance?

5. One of Wellington's aims upon his return home was to help save ______________, who had fallen into scandal.

Short Essay Questions

1. Why was, and is, it important for a leader to have good oration skills?

2. How did Wellington treat his men? What might this reveal about him?

3. How was Alexander's melodramatic personality both a help and a hindrance?

4. Describe the army Alexander inherited from his father.

5. To whom does Keegan compare Alexander the Great in Chapter One? What is the outcome of this comparison?

6. Compare the upbringing of both Wellington and Alexander.

7. Describe Wellington's dress during a battle. Why might he have dressed this way?

8. Describe Alexander's relationship with his men. What does this reveal about his character?

9. Overall, do you believe that Alexander was a great leader? Why or why not?

10. Why might the author use the word "abstractedly" to describe Wellington?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Alexander was well-known for his flair for the dramatic.

Part 1) Describe his interest in drama. How does this reflect his personality and upbringing? What might the Macedonians think of this? Would his flair for the dramatic be accepted in other cultures at that time? Why or why not?

Part 2) How did other leaders mentioned in this book compare to Alexander, regarding melodramatic behavior? Were they all as melodramatic? Why or why not?

Part 3) What leaders in our world today are considered melodramatic? How does this affect those that could potentially follow them? How does it affect those who go against them?

Essay Topic 2

The author gives a chapter the title, "Wellington: the Anti-Hero".

Part 1) What is meant by "anti-hero?" How is Wellington an anti-hero? How does this compare to other leaders discussed in this book, such as Alexander the Great, Hitler, and Grant? How does he compare to Napoleon?

Part 2) Why does the author spend a significant portion of this section on Wellington comparing him to Napoleon? What can be learned about each man by comparing them?

Part 3) Would you consider any of our world leaders today to be anti-heroes? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

Alexander the Great was compared to many other leaders.

Part 1) How did Alexander become such a great leader? Why does the author seem to believe that no other can match Alexander the Great? Do you agree? Why or why not?

Part 2) Of the leaders mentioned in this book, who is the greatest leader, besides Alexander the Great? Why do you believe this? How does this leader compare to other leaders?

Part 3) Who is a great leader today? How does this leader compare to the leaders mentioned in this book? Are the world's leaders becoming greater? Why or why not?

(see the answer keys)

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