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. Who is the first character to speak in "The Oresteia"?

2. What is Clytemnestra's plan for ruling Mycenae at the end of the Agamemnon?

3. For what does the herald thank the gods?

4. What gift did Apollo give Cassandra before the events of The Oresteia?

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

Short Essay Questions

1. Why is Orestes praying to Hermes and Zeus at beginning of "The Libation Bearers"?

2. What does Aegisthus claim about himself and about the murders?

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

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

5. What is Clytemnestra's vision for the future after the death of Agamemnon?

6. Why did Agamemnon go to Troy?

7. To what does the chorus compare Troy and why?

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

9. What evidence does Electra find that convinces her Orestes has returned to Mycenae?

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

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Choose one of the following topics to write about:

1) The description of Clytemnestra being "god abandoned."

2) Clytemnestra's relationship with Aegisthus.

3) The use of the Trojan women as the chorus in the second play.

Essay Topic 2

Choose one of the following options to write about:

1) Agamemnon and women.

2) Clytemnestra's role in setting the Furies upon Orestes.

3) Cassandra's prophecies.

Cite specific examples from the text to support your arguments.

Essay Topic 3

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.

(see the answer keys)

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