The Oresteia 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. When does the second play take place?

2. How does Agamemnon make his entrance?

3. For what does Aegisthus thank the gods in the fifth part of the first play?

4. What does Clytemnestra remind the chorus to do after Aegisthus's outburst?

5. What message does Clytemnestra send to Agamemnon through the herald?

Short Essay Questions

1. What happened to Menelaus, according to the herald?

2. What was Clytemnestra's dream?

3. Who is revealed to be encouraging the Furies to hunt Orestes and why?

4. What are Agamemnon's feelings about Troy?

5. What ends up being the fate of the Furies at the end of the play?

6. What is the conflict between the Furies and Apollo?

7. What does Athena decide to do about judging the case between Orestes and the Furies?

8. After receiving false news in the third part of the second play, what is Clytemnestra's reaction to news of Orestes' supposed death?

9. What does Orestes find mysterious about the women approaching Agamemnon's tomb?

10. What does Orestes mean when he cries out to Zeus in the second part of "The Libation Bearers"?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Consider the god Apollo. On one hand, he is Orestes' savior, offering his support and guidance of the young man at every turn. On the other hand, Apollo has ruined Cassandra's life, cursing her and allowing Troy to be defeated. Explore the conflicting roles of Apollo and how he has affected the events of "The Oresteia". Cite specific examples from the text.

Essay Topic 2

What is Cassandra's role in the first play? What is her history with the house of Atreus? Is she the only inherently tragic figure in "The Oresteia"? Cite specific examples from the text to support your arguments.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the use of dramatic irony within "The Oresteia". What characters seem to be the victims of this? Why can these characters never truly fulfill their goals? City specific examples from the text to support your arguments.

(see the answer keys)

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