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. According to Mencken, what if there had not been a Civil War in the United States?
(a) The South would have gotten rid of slavery anyway.
(b) The South would have been devastated economically.
(c) The South would be a desolate place full of "cow towns" with no culture.
(d) The South would have retained slavery as an institution.

2. What might Mencken say was Grover Cleveland's defining trait?
(a) Intelligence.
(b) Stubbornness.
(c) Political acumen.
(d) A lust for life.

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

4. Who were the two attorneys in the Scopes monkey trial?
(a) William Jennings Bryan and Clarence Darrow.
(b) Clarence Darrow and Henry Cabot Lodge.
(c) Theodore Dreiser and John Pershing.
(d) William Jennings Bryan and Andrew Still.

5. What did Mencken conclude in his examination of rulings in "Mr. Justice Holmes"?
(a) Justice Holmes rendered fantastically bizarre rulings, and should be impeached.
(b) Justice Holmes ruled too often for rabble-rousers, and not often enough for the aristocracy.
(c) Mencken slyly suggests Holmes should tuck chickens under his arms because of his chicken-like cowardice.
(d) Justice Holmes ruled too often in favor of the powers that be, rather than the people.

6. Which of the following did NOT happen during "The Hills of Zion"?
(a) The preacher began to speak in tongues.
(b) A woman warned against reading books.
(c) A preacher appeared to strangle a woman to death before he miraculously "cures" her.
(d) A young woman went into convulsions.

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

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

9. What was Mencken's general opinion of religion at the end of "Holy Writ"?
(a) Religion is a pretty silly business.
(b) Religion is a great good, and responsible for much of what is good in civilization.
(c) Religion is valuable, but flawed.
(d) Religion is evil, and should be outlawed.

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

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

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

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

14. What was Mencken's phrase for religious fundamentalism?
(a) "That Old-Time Religion."
(b) "Ye Olde Honest Truth."
(c) "The Shepherd's Porridge."
(d) "The Fluff of the Flock."

15. What problem did Mencken have with Justice Holmes' final court case?
(a) Holmes delivered an hour-long, and completely unnecessary, speech when rendering his verdict.
(b) The case was a clear violation of freedom from double jeopardy.
(c) The case violated the writ of Habeus Corpus.
(d) The case involved a tainted jury pool.

Short Answer Questions

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

2. What was the general atmosphere of the Democratic National Convention of 1932, as reported by Mencken?

3. What event did Mencken cover in "The Wallace Paranoia"?

4. In "The Wallace Paranoia," who was Mencken referring to with the phrase "raisins in the bread."

5. Why was early Christianity superior to modern Christianity, per "Holy Writ"?

(see the answer keys)

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