The Professor and the Madman: A Tale of Murder, Insanity, and the Making of the Oxford English Dictionary Test | Final Test - Hard

Simon Winchester
This set of Lesson Plans consists of approximately 137 pages of tests, essay questions, lessons, and other teaching materials.
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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. What did Murray threaten to do at various times due to the Delegates' interferences, slow pace, and his suffering health?

2. According to the author, after organizing a quote what kind of a definition did Murray have to write?

3. What did the act of sending the rules to Minor symbolize to him?

4. How many rooms did Minor have during his stay at Broadmoor?

5. What addiction did Eliza have after being in touch with Minor?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is relevant about the fact that Minor was a fan of Huxley, particularly his idea of agnosticism?

2. What does Murray's Scriptorium represent to present day scholars of the English language?

3. How did Minor come to be able to return to the United States at the end of his life? What obstacles did he face along the way?

4. What showed the great essence of teamwork between Murray and Minor?

5. In what ways could Murray be seen as a voice of reason and motivation for Minor to stay on task to the Oxford English Dictionary?

6. In Chapter 6, what do the author's previously established characteristics of Minor suggest about how he may have gotten along with the parole patients in Block 2?

7. What was the overarching reason why Murray decided to visit Minor?

8. Describe how Minor may have felt when he entered the property at the Broadmoor Asylum.

9. How did it become clear that Murray had very little idea of what psychological state Minor experienced?

10. Why could Minor more easily understand Murray's directions in comparison to others?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What narrative devices does the author employ in painting a vivid picture of life in 19th and early 20th Century England?

Essay Topic 2

The title of the book and its chapter titles are somewhat surprising considering that this is a non-fiction book about the making of a famous dictionary. Why are the titles surprising? Discuss what effects the author may have aimed for in choosing these titles.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the links the author draws between various vices such as sex, drugs, and alcohol and their influence on the events of the story.

(see the answer keys)

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