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. Towards the end of the first play, what does the chorus tell Clytemnestra they refuse to do?

2. In the first part of the first play, according to Clytemnestra, what does Agamemnon have yet to endure?

3. After Cassandra enters the castle and their monologue is interrupted, what dispute rises amongst the chorus?

4. To Aegisthus's consternation, of what does the chorus remind him?

5. What god does the leader of the chorus praise for Agamemnon's victory?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Clytemnestra describe her life to her husband during Agamemnon's absence?

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

3. Why does Cassandra finally walk into the palace?

4. Why does the chorus call out for Orestes to return home at the end of the first play?

5. What is Cassandra's curse and why was it placed on her?

6. For what is Agamemnon praised and what is his response when he returns to Mycenae?

7. What is Electra supposed to do at her father's tomb?

8. What is significant about Agamemnon walking into his palace barefoot?

9. What visions does Cassandra see when she looks at the palace?

10. What are the chorus's opinions on Paris and his actions in the second part of "The Agamemnon"?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Clytemnestra and Orestes are two of the main characters upon which "The Oresteia" is centered. Discuss the following:

Part 1) Compare and contrast Clytemnestra and Orestes.

Part 2) How do their missions of vengeance differ and how do the gods (including the Furies) look upon them?

Part 3) Orestes' exile by Clytemnestra and how it affects the outcome of the play.

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the use of the chorus in "The Oresteia".

Part 1) Analyze their roles as observers in all three plays.

Part 2) How does the chorus become active participants and characters at certain points?

Part 3) How is the chorus able to act as a guide for the audience and readers?

Essay Topic 3

In "The Oresteia", the women are the ones who are depicted as seeking revenge. With this in mind, what is the play attempting to say about women? Create a strong thesis. Points to consider include:

1) Clytemnestra's revenge for her daughter's death.

2) Cassandra's visions and her prayers that her death will be avenged.

3) The Furies as bloodthirsty, vengeful goddesses.

4) Orestes' quest of revenge.

5) The roles of Athena and Apollo in Orestes' plight.

(see the answer keys)

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