The Vintage Mencken Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

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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. According to Mencken, what was Christianity's history with lying?
(a) One must lie to oneself in order to adhere to religious beliefs.
(b) Every sermon uttered by a priest is a lie.
(c) Lying is not expressly forbidden, and is oftentimes even encouraged.
(d) Lying is a great sin before God.

2. In "Pater Patriae," which was NOT one of the reasons Mencken admired George Washington?
(a) He was not convinced of the wisdom of common people.
(b) He was tough-living, and whiskey-drinking.
(c) He put his trust and authority in intellectuals and lawyers.
(d) He could cuss up a storm.

3. Which war was General John Pershing most famously involved in?
(a) World War II.
(b) The Civil War.
(c) The War of the Roses.
(d) World War I.

4. What does Mencken call a man who resists the charms of women?
(a) An exceedingly wise stone statue.
(b) A most distinguished gentleman.
(c) A most rare beast indeed.
(d) A most disgusting cad.

5. Which historical figure did Mencken ridicule by stating he was known as a "plaster saint"?
(a) George Washington.
(b) Napoleon Bonaparte.
(c) Theodore Dreiser.
(d) Abraham Lincoln.

Short Answer Questions

1. What dominated Puritanism, according to Mencken in "The National Letters"?

2. Which was described as Mencken's earliest memory?

3. What did Mencken satirize in "Quid Est Veritas"?

4. What criticism did Dr. William Bayard Hale have for Woodrow Wilson?

5. What quotation did Mencken borrow from Theodore Dreiser in "Cavia Cobaya"?

Short Essay Questions

1. What was Mencken's opinion about Henry Cabot Lodge?

2. Why are "handsome men" suspicious, according to "The Lure of Beauty"?

3. What was Gene the magistrate's approach to law and justice in "Recollections of Notable Cops"?

4. According to Mencken, Theodore Dreiser had what emotional effect on the reader?

5. How did Mencken answer the question of whether successful men should have mistresses?

6. Why did Mencken criticize Woodrow Wilson?

7. How did Charlie get craftsmen to work at the jail in "Recollections of Notable Cops"?

8. What was Mencken's opinion of Ralph Waldo Emerson's "The American Scholar"?

9. Why was 1880s Baltimore such a loud town?

10. According to Mencken, why do so many people lie?

(see the answer keys)

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