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 would best describe Mencken's attitude toward Oliver Wendell Holmes?
(a) He was a Liberal hero in name only.
(b) He was a quack chiropractor.
(c) His rulings were thoroughly corrupt.
(d) He was a fantastic advocate of progressive causes.

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

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

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

5. 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 include the work of Theodore Dreiser.
(c) The book had nothing from the ancient Greeks.
(d) The book failed to mention music at all.

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

7. What point did Mencken make when referring to the picture of a French soldier who was deformed with multiple amputations in war?
(a) Mencken thought it was terribly sad that the man will not be able to walk into heaven.
(b) The soldier made the noblest of sacrifices, and will be remembered forever.
(c) The French were brave people, indeed.
(d) Mencken imagined that the soldier likely sought a glorious death in battle, but now has to live life in a pathetic state.

8. How did Mencken appraise Valentino in their dinner meeting?
(a) Valentino was a genius who would be better suited as a scientist or engineer.
(b) Valentino was a brute who did not deserve his fame or money.
(c) Valentino was a ham actor of the highest order.
(d) Valentino was a noble soul questioning his vulgar acting profession.

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

10. What did Mencken conclude in his examination of rulings in "Mr. Justice Holmes"?
(a) Justice Holmes ruled too often in favor of the powers that be, rather than the people.
(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 rendered fantastically bizarre rulings, and should be impeached.

11. Which of the following was NOT an attribute of an artist, as Mencken describes in "The Artist"?
(a) The artist is more sensitive to his environment than normal people.
(b) The artist turns against his country and countrymen.
(c) The artist is more easily wounded.
(d) The artist is patriotic.

12. Who did Mencken NOT count among the "crackpots" present in "The Wallace Paranoia"?
(a) Communists.
(b) Psychopaths.
(c) Career political operatives.
(d) Bible-belt evangelists.

13. What event did Mencken cover in "The Wallace Paranoia"?
(a) A socialite's ball.
(b) The Progressive Party convention.
(c) The New York World's Fair.
(d) The marriage of a governor.

14. Why did Valentino invite Mencken to dinner?
(a) To beg him to ask a young woman out on a date for him.
(b) To ask for advice about a fight with a New York newspaper.
(c) To challenge him to a duel for libel.
(d) To advise him on whether or not to take an upcoming film role.

15. In "Travail," how did the boys going to school in the morning seem to Mencken?
(a) Like they might someday conquer the world.
(b) Tired and sad.
(c) Energetic and hopeful.
(d) Upbeat and joyous.

Short Answer Questions

1. Who was Mencken referring to with the title, "A Good Man in a Bad Trade"?

2. Which was NOT a challenge to the schoolboy Mencken mentioned in "Travail"?

3. Which of the following might Mencken say about Calvin Coolidge?

4. Where did the Scopes monkey trial take place?

5. Why, according to Mencken, do virtuous people end up sinning the worst?

(see the answer keys)

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