The Vintage Mencken Test | Final Test - Easy

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This test consists of 15 multiple choice questions and 5 short answer questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. What was the subject of the Scopes monkey trial?
(a) The teaching of evolution.
(b) A treasonous plot to help a Central American country.
(c) The assault of a zoo heckler by a gorilla.
(d) The kidnapping of a chimpanzee.

2. Who was Mencken referring to with the title, "A Good Man in a Bad Trade"?
(a) A chiropractor.
(b) Woodrow Wilson.
(c) Grover Cleveland.
(d) Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

3. Where did the Scopes monkey trial take place?
(a) Baltimore, Maryland.
(b) Chicago, Illinois.
(c) Dayton, Tennessee.
(d) St. Louis, Missouri.

4. In "The Wallace Paranoia," who was Mencken referring to with the phrase "raisins in the bread."
(a) Bible-belt evangelists.
(b) Honorable, career politicians.
(c) Sweet, young ladies amid a bunch of old men.
(d) Extremists and the mentally unstable.

5. Which was NOT a challenge to the schoolboy Mencken mentioned in "Travail"?
(a) They were trying to learn things that are above their intellectual ability.
(b) They were forced to be babysat against their will.
(c) They were taught by teachers they don't respect.
(d) They were taught lessons no one has an interest in.

6. What was unique to the American psyche according to Mencken in "Libido for the Ugly"?
(a) A queer fascination with ugliness.
(b) Sexual arousal when viewing art objects.
(c) An obsession with staying thin.
(d) A tendency to be rude and loud during movie screenings.

7. What was the source of Oliver Wendell Holmes' allure?
(a) His personal charisma and sometimes outrageous court antics.
(b) His eloquent, epigrammatic writing style.
(c) His ability to stick to the facts and write sound legal opinions.
(d) His ability to bribe officials at every level of government.

8. Which of the following was true in regard to statements made by Mencken about chiropractic?
(a) There was no, and would never be, any beneficial effect of chiropractic.
(b) The deaths of chiropractic patients was welcome, as it would mean less stupid people in the world.
(c) Chiropractors were made up of intellectual heavyweights and aristocrats.
(d) Chiropractic sprang from a perversion of brain science.

9. What was Mencken's current opinion of the American South, as revealed in "The Calamity of Appomattox"?
(a) It was a lightning-rod of controversy.
(b) It was an economic powerhouse.
(c) It was a culturally superior place.
(d) It was a culturally inferior place.

10. What was the point of the section, "Sententiae"?
(a) It was a collection of humorous and witty Mencken sayings.
(b) It was a personal letter from Mencken to his wife, in order to show Mencken's softer side.
(c) Mencken railed against the European royal class.
(d) Mencken attempted to get a judge thrown off a case.

11. What was the subject of Mencken's final published article?
(a) A horse robbery.
(b) The murder of an adulterous housewife.
(c) The "newest quackery" of household appliances.
(d) A court case tinged with racism.

12. How was Mencken able to get a taxi driver to drive him to a speakeasy in Pennsylvania?
(a) He threatened the driver with jail time.
(b) He agreed to write an article about the driver.
(c) He gave the driver a ten dollar bill.
(d) He showed the driver the musical score from a Bach concert.

13. How had Wallace behaved in "The Wallace Paranoia"?
(a) He was flirting with "most every thing in a dress."
(b) He had managed difficult times with great elegance.
(c) He had been a bumbler and an "ass."
(d) He was convinced there are Communist space aliens.

14. What might Mencken say about a writer's sense of beauty?
(a) The writer has a very poor sense of beauty.
(b) Beauty is irrelevant to the writer, who must deal with cold, hard facts.
(c) The writer has an average sense of beauty.
(d) The writer has a profound sense of beauty.

15. What was the subject of "A Good Man Gone Wrong"?
(a) A man who heckled an animal at the zoo, and got arrested.
(b) A man who murdered at the request of another man's wife.
(c) A man who robbed in order to feed his family.
(d) A man who was jailed for protesting World War I.

Short Answer Questions

1. Which is the best style of architecture, according to Mencken?

2. Complete the following aphorism found in "Sententiae": "Democracy is..."

3. Why did Valentino invite Mencken to dinner?

4. How do common folk read the Bible, according to Mencken in "Holy Writ"?

5. What aspect of death did Mencken find most interesting?

(see the answer keys)

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