The Story of English Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

Robert McCrum
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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. What was the first successful English settlement on the mainland of North America?
(a) Cooperstown.
(b) New York.
(c) Washington D.C.
(d) Jamestown.

2. What Latin-speaking philosopher and theologian was a major figure in the development of Western Christianity?
(a) St. Augustine.
(b) St. Patrick.
(c) St. Mark.
(d) St. Peter.

3. What is a simplified language that develops as a means of communication between two or more groups that do not have a language in common?
(a) Average.
(b) Common.
(c) Simple.
(d) Pidgin.

4. Who published the Dictionary of the English Language in 1755?
(a) Daniel Johnson.
(b) Daniel Webster.
(c) James Joyce.
(d) Samuel Johnson.

5. Julius Caesar and his armies conquered Britain when?
(a) 100 B.C.
(b) 55 B.C.
(c) 44 B.C.
(d) 34 B.C.

Short Answer Questions

1. Global English is either British or what?

2. Who is listed as the Executive Producer of the television series The Story of English?

3. The people of what country have recently developed a fanatical desire to learn English, and English is vital in many developing countries, according to the author?

4. The English language was formed through how many invasions?

5. What great-grandfather of rap does Robert McCrum write is largely forgotten?

Short Essay Questions

1. When did Julius Caesar invade the Celts? What was the result?

2. What is notable about the standardization of English throughout history? What examples do the authors give in Chapter 1, An English-Speaking World?

3. When was the Scottish tongue at its peak? What caused its downfall?

4. What do the authors assert is the common ancestry of all languages? What happened to most of them?

5. What is the difficulty of explaining sounds of language, according to the authors? What resources can help the reader in grasping dialect?

6. What impact did the printing press and the scientific revolution have on the English language?

7. What do the authors of The Story of English rely upon to relate the history of the English language?

8. Which group of Scots first spoke English? Where did it arrive from?

9. How do we know how the English language sounded hundreds of years ago? What do the authors relate about grammatical shifts in the Introduction?

10. Samuel Johnson's dictionary had what impact on the Scottish dialect? What were Johnson's experiences in Scotland?

(see the answer keys)

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