The Way of the World Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What is the relationship between Witwoud and Sir Wilfull Witwoud?

2. Who are the fools spoken of in the prologue?

3. Where are Mrs. Fainall and Mrs. Marwood as Act 2, Scene 1 opens?

4. For what purpose are the cosmetics used in Act 3, Scene 1?

5. How does Congreve use satire in the prologue?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe how the cosmetics used in Act 3, Scene 1 become a symbol.

2. Why does Mrs. Fainall support Mirabell's plans?

3. Explain what Mrs. Marwood learned when she stayed in the closet in Lady Wishfort's dressing room. How does she react?

4. What is the relationship between Waitwell and Foible?

5. Describe what we know about Mrs. Marwood at the beginning of Act 2, Scene 1.

6. Why are fame and fortune said to be 'fleeting'?

7. Explain Fainall's circumstances as we know them by Act 2, Scene 1. What is his relationship with the women in the play?

8. In what way(s) is the play different from the usual farce audiences were accustomed to?

9. What opinion do you have of Mirabell's trickery in pretending to love Lady Wishfort in order to marry Mrs. Millamant? Is this too far-fetched to be believable or is it a possibility? Explain your point of view using specific examples from the play.

10. Is Congreve being facetious when he says the play's purpose is to entertain the audience and not instruct them about life?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Do the characters in the play show growth or changes as the play progresses? How much of the play's meaning depends on this growth? How do you think the characters will have changed five or ten years from now?

Essay Topic 2

In your opinion, who was the most successful character in achieving his or her goals in the play? Why have you chosen this character? Explain why you think this character succeeded where other failed.

Essay Topic 3

Congreve's play is a comedy yet it has serious overtones. Explain how the playwright achieves both in this work. Give examples to illustrate your points.

(see the answer keys)

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