The Way of the World Test | Final 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 does Lady Wishfort demonstrate when she agrees to Fainall and Mrs. Marwood's schemes?

2. What problem must Lady Wishfort solve instead of attending Sir Rowland at the end of Act 4, Scene 1?

3. All of the following characteristics of Lady Wishfort's girlish excitement at Sir Rowland's visit are revealed except one. Which characteristic is not true of Lady Wishfort?

4. Which character(s) leave the dining room in Act 4, Scene 2?

5. What does Sir Rowland claim as he enters the dining room and greets Lady Wishfort?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why is Mrs. Marwood trying to provoke Mrs. Millamant in Act 3, Scene 3?

2. As a play, The Way of the World met with little success. However, critics believe it is one of the best comedies of manners ever written. Why do you think there is such a difference in opinion between audiences and critics?

3. Discuss Lady Wishfort's reaction to Foible's revelations in Act 5, Scene 1.

4. Why is Mrs. Marwood one of the least sympathetic characters in the play?

5. Why does Mirabell agree to help the Fainall's achieve peace in their marriage?

6. How do you think audiences in this era would react to such a revolutionary position as that of Mrs. Millamant who was asking for equal rights?

7. Is Mirabell's elaborate plot going to be successful? Explain why or why not?

8. What makes the scene between Mrs. Fainall and Foible comic?

9. Discuss Lady Wishfort's plans for receiving Sir Rowland. Why are the plans so elaborate?

10. Why does Lady Wishfort accept Mirabell offer to help Mrs. Millamant?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

There are multiple devious characters in this play. Discuss who they are, their motivations, and their purpose in the play. Did they deserve their outcome? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 2

Congreve seemed to be critical of Restoration society for various reasons. Find at least three examples in the play that illustrate his criticism. Explain why he thought each one of these points was negative. How would he have changed these failings? Explain your answer in detail.

Essay Topic 3

In the prologue, Congreve claims that tastes are determined by fate and that natural fools are blessed by fate. What does he mean? Does fate determine our destiny? Why or why not? Explain your answer.

(see the answer keys)

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