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 memorable simile did Mencken use for Grover Cleveland?
(a) Cleveland was like a newborn babe gazing at the stars for the first time.
(b) Cleveland was like a crocodile waiting to snap his jaws around the American public.
(c) Cleveland was like a fragile butterfly with wings of dynamite.
(d) Cleveland was like a steel ship loaded with monoliths of granite.

2. What was Mencken's opinion of Gothic architecture?
(a) Valuable and useful.
(b) Completely out of style.
(c) Joyless and dreary.
(d) Hideous.

3. What criticism did Mencken have for a book filled with sayings and writings about death?
(a) The book had three quotations attributed to the contemptible Oliver Wendell Holmes.
(b) The book failed to mention music at all.
(c) The book had nothing from the ancient Greeks.
(d) The book failed to include the work of Theodore Dreiser.

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

5. What did Mencken call for in "Mencken's Last Stand"?
(a) For president Harry S. Truman to resign.
(b) For the world to leave him alone.
(c) A more intelligent approach to chiropractic.
(d) An end to segregation.

6. Who was Mencken with at a Bach concert in Pennsylvania when he decided to get some liquor?
(a) Woodrow Wilson.
(b) Gene the magistrate.
(c) Henry Cabot Lodge.
(d) Alfred Knopf.

7. What was Mencken's epitaph?
(a) Wink your eye at some homely girl.
(b) Remember what I said, not what I did.
(c) Give your mother a kiss, for me.
(d) This gravestone may alternately be used as a paperweight.

8. How was plutocracy created, according to Mencken?
(a) From the corrupting influence of money.
(b) From a desperate and starving peasant class.
(c) Through dictatorial grabs for power.
(d) From the ruins of proper aristocracy.

9. Which of the following describes an Anglo-Saxon soldier, according to Mencken?
(a) A tendency to be able to bore the enemy to death with a long speech.
(b) A cowardice and ready willingness to desert.
(c) A remarkable physical constitution.
(d) A strong sense of tactics as well as strategy.

10. What aspect of old-time education did Mencken miss most in modern education?
(a) The insistence on only male teachers.
(b) The charm of the one-room schoolhouse.
(c) Corporal punishment.
(d) The tolling of the dinner triangle.

11. What did Mencken attribute to the fall of the "good man" in "A Good Man Gone Wrong"?
(a) An "unspeakable force in the universe."
(b) A runaway automobile.
(c) A nagging housewife.
(d) A Presbyterian upbringing.

12. According to Mencken, how might Calvin Coolidge had handled the Great Depression?
(a) By cowering under his desk.
(b) By nationalizing many sectors of the economy.
(c) By sleeping through it.
(d) By taking a more active role than FDR ever had.

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

14. In "Valentino," what did the press find in a men's bathroom that caused them to mock Valentino and his "Latin Lover" image?
(a) Pink talcum-powder.
(b) Underwear with a hole in it.
(c) Women's perfume.
(d) A bar of lavender-scented soap-on-a-rope.

15. What was the subject of "The Noble Experiment"?
(a) Drinking during Prohibition.
(b) The Cuban revolution.
(c) A scientific breakthrough Mencken reported on.
(d) Voting during World War I.

Short Answer Questions

1. Per "Mr. Justice Holmes," which of the following might Mencken say about the legislature as a state organization?

2. What was "lamentable" about the North beating the South in the Civil War, according to Mencken?

3. According to Mencken, why was Samuel Johnson unique as an artist?

4. What was unique to the American psyche according to Mencken in "Libido for the Ugly"?

5. What was the subject of Mencken's final published article?

(see the answer keys)

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