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English 10-1

Shakespeare: Reading comprehension

#1 Henry V

1. Lines 1 to 9 indicate that the men of England are behaving mainly out of

A. macho vanity.
B. blood-thirstiness.
C. noble motivations.
D. expectations of gain.

2. The line "They sell the pasture now to buy the horse" (line 5) reveals a sense of

A. un-readiness.
B. extreme pride.
C. great urgency.
D. overconfidence.

3. In the context of the line 17, England's "inward greatness" (line 16) is the product of her

A. wise rulers.
B. rich history.
C. physical beauty.
D. courageous people.

4. The description of England in lines 16 to 27 indicates that both her strength and weakness lie in her

A. size
B. rulers.
C. citizens.
D. isolation.

5. Which of the following paired elements from the speech least suggests a contrast

A. "the gilt of France" "O guilt indeed!"


B. "treacherous crowns" "crowns imperial"
C. England's "dreadful preparation" the "policy" of "fearful France"
D. the noble citizens of England the traitorous nobles in Southampton

6. The phrase "treacherous crowns" (line 22) is especially effective because

A. as an image, it is perfectly consistent with the image of a "nest of hollow bosoms."


B. it suggests that the nobles who receive the crowns may also seek the crown of England.
C. though it refers mainly to money, it hints also at the treachery of France's crowned heads.
D. it indirectly suggests the irony that Henry himself may turn out to be a treacherous crowned head.
7. The traitors are to be executed in

A. France.
B. London.
C. Southampton.
D. the playhouse.

8. The phrase that serves to directly summarize offstage action is

A. "With winged heels, as English Mercuries" (line 7).


B. "Like little body with a mighty heart" (line 17).
C. "The King is set from London" (line 34).
D. "And thence to France shall we convey you safe" (line 37).

9. The speaker's attitude toward his audience is best described as

A. mocking.
B. welcoming.
C. patronizing.
D. intimidating.

10. The main function of the speech is to

A. summarize the action of Act I.


B. prepare us for the action of Act II.
C. describe the characters of the play.
D. foreshadow the outcome of the war.
#1 Henry V

KEY

1. Lines 1 to 9 indicate that the men of England are behaving mainly out of

A. macho vanity.
B. blood-thirstiness.
C. noble motivations.
D. expectations of gain.

2. The line "They sell the pasture now to buy the horse" (line 5) reveals a sense of

A. un-readiness.
B. extreme pride.
C. great urgency.
D. overconfidence.

3. In the context of the line 17, England's "inward greatness" (line 16) is the product of her

A. wise rulers.
B. rich history.
C. physical beauty.
D. courageous people.

4. The description of England in lines 16 to 27 indicates that both her strength and weakness lie in her

A. size
B. rulers.
C. citizens.
D. isolation.

5. Which of the following paired elements from the speech least suggests a contrast

A. "the gilt of France" "O guilt indeed!"


B. "treacherous crowns" "crowns imperial"
C. England's "dreadful preparation" the "policy" of "fearful France"
D. the noble citizens of England the traitorous nobles in Southampton

6. The phrase "treacherous crowns" (line 22) is especially effective because

A. as an image, it is perfectly consistent with the image of a "nest of hollow bosoms."


B. it suggests that the nobles who receive the crowns may also seek the crown of England.
C. though it refers mainly to money, it hints also at the treachery of France's crowned heads.
D. it indirectly suggests the irony that Henry himself may turn out to be a treacherous crowned head.
7. The traitors are to be executed in

A. France.
B. London.
C. Southampton.
D. the playhouse.

8. The phrase that serves to directly summarize offstage action is

A. "With winged heels, as English Mercuries" (line 7).


B. "Like little body with a mighty heart" (line 17).
C. "The King is set from London" (line 34).
D. "And thence to France shall we convey you safe" (line 37).

9. The speaker's attitude toward his audience is best described as

A. mocking.
B. welcoming.
C. patronizing.
D. intimidating.

10. The main function of the speech is to

A. summarize the action of Act I.


B. prepare us for the action of Act II.
C. describe the characters of the play.
D. foreshadow the outcome of the war.
#2 Troilus and Cressida

1. The purpose of Priam's opening speech (lines 1 7) is to

A. reject Nestor's demand.


B. honor Nestor's demand.
C. present Nestor's demand.

2. Hector's main argument for giving up Helen to the Greeks (lines 8 16) is that

A. Helen's abduction was unreasonable.


B. Helen has contributed nothing to Troy.
C. Helen's value cannot justify more Trojan deaths.

3. In his speech at lines 17 to 20, Troilus implies his position by

A. questioning his father's honor.


B. indicating his respect for his father.
C. proclaiming his doubt about his father.

4. In context, the word "dread" (line 19) means

A. mighty.
B. hopeful.
C. cowardly.

5. Speaking about the value of any object (lines 41 45), Hector says that its price

A. may be set by the individual alone.


B. depends completely on public opinion.
C. is set by the individual and the object itself.

6. In lines 46 to 49, Troilus advances his argument by using

A. an appeal to patriotism.
B. an approval of good laws.
C. an appropriate comparison.

7. Cassandra's sudden entrance and passionate pleading (lines 61 70) serves to

A. simply interrupt and irritate her brothers.


B. contrast with the reasoned argumentation of her brothers.
C. introduce an unrelated element into the action of the play.
8. When Cassandra wails "Troy must not be, nor goodly Ilion stand; / Our firebrand brother, Paris, burns
us all" (lines 67 68), she means that Paris

A. will disgrace his family.


B. has antagonized his family.
C. will cause the ruin of Troy.

9. The two characters whose positions are most clearly shown to be in agreement are

A. Priam and Troilus.


B. Helenus and Paris.
C. Hector and Cassandra.
#2 Troilus and Cressida

KEY

1. The purpose of Priam's opening speech (lines 1 7) is to

A. reject Nestor's demand.


B. honor Nestor's demand.
C. present Nestor's demand.

2. Hector's main argument for giving up Helen to the Greeks (lines 8 16) is that

A. Helen's abduction was unreasonable.


B. Helen has contributed nothing to Troy.
C. Helen's value cannot justify more Trojan deaths.

3. In his speech at lines 17 to 20, Troilus implies his position by

A. questioning his father's honor.


B. indicating his respect for his father.
C. proclaiming his doubt about his father.

4. In context, the word "dread" (line 19) means

A. mighty.
B. hopeful.
C. cowardly.

5. Speaking about the value of any object (lines 41 45), Hector says that its price

A. may be set by the individual alone.


B. depends completely on public opinion.
C. is set by the individual and the object itself.

6. In lines 46 to 49, Troilus advances his argument by using

A. an appeal to patriotism.
B. an approval of good laws.
C. an appropriate comparison.

7. Cassandra's sudden entrance and passionate pleading (lines 61 70) serves to

A. simply interrupt and irritate her brothers.


B. contrast with the reasoned argumentation of her brothers.
C. introduce an unrelated element into the action of the play.
8. When Cassandra wails "Troy must not be, nor goodly Ilion stand; / Our firebrand brother, Paris, burns
us all" (lines 67 68), she means that Paris

A. will disgrace his family.


B. has antagonized his family.
C. will cause the ruin of Troy.

9. The two characters whose positions are most clearly shown to be in agreement are

A. Priam and Troilus.


B. Helenus and Paris.
C. Hector and Cassandra.
#3 The Winter's Tale

1. Hermione feels that, in spite of her innocence, Leontes will not believe her plea of "Not guilty." This is
most directly shown in the lines

A. "Mine integrity / Being counted falsehood" (lines 5 6).


B. "innocence shall / make falsehood blush" (lines 9 10).
C. "I appeal / To your own conscience" (lines 24 25).

2. In his speech at lines 34 to 37, Leontes justifies his being unaffected by Hermione's declaration by
saying that

A. no kind of criminal wrongdoing can ever be excusable.


B. taking pride in one's shameful behavior is itself shameful.
C. denying a crime is as bad as committing the original crime.

3. Hermione explains that her relationship with Polixenes was characterized by

A. ignorance.
B. foolishness.
C. properness.

4. When Leontes says "As you were past all shame . . . so past all truth" (lines 67 68), he is dismissing
Hermione's claim to innocence on the grounds that

A. immoral people lie easily.


B. evidence has proven her guilt.
C. Apollo's oracle will convict her.

5. The irony of Leontes' statement "Thy brat hath been cast out . . . No father owning it" (lines 70 71) is
directly revealed by the later statement

A. " 'the King shall live without an heir, if that which is lost be not found' " (lines 116 117).
B. "the heavens themselves / Do strike at my injustice" (lines 132 133).
C. "This news is mortal to the Queen" (line 135).

6. When Hermione says "The bug which you would fright me with I seek" (line 76), she means that she

A. knows she has shamed herself and therefore has become suicidal.
B. wants to be able to allowed to choose the method of her execution.
C. would rather die than live without that which makes her life complete.

7. Hermione declares her greatest loss is her

A. two children.
B. royal position.
C. husband's love.
8. The lines that suggest most strongly that Leontes' accusations are groundless are

A. "You, my lord, best know, / Who least will seem to do so" (lines 11 12).
B. "I do confess / I loved him as in honor he required" (lines 44 45).
C. "condemned / upon surmises, all proofs sleeping else / But what you jealousies awake" (lines 95
97).

9. Leontes sees his son's death as being

A. confirmation of his suspicions.


B. a sign of Apollo's misjudgment.
C. punishment for his own misjudgment.

10. The aspect of human nature that this scene mainly illustrates is the way in which

A. innocence invites tragedy.


B. vulnerability to error is common.
C. ungoverned emotion clouds perception.
#3 The Winter's Tale

KEY

1. Hermione feels that, in spite of her innocence, Leontes will not believe her plea of "Not guilty." This is
most directly shown in the lines

A. "Mine integrity / Being counted falsehood" (lines 5 6).


B. "innocence shall / make falsehood blush" (lines 9 10).
C. "I appeal / To your own conscience" (lines 24 25).

2. In his speech at lines 34 to 37, Leontes justifies his being unaffected by Hermione's declaration by
saying that

A. no kind of criminal wrongdoing can ever be excusable.


B. taking pride in one's shameful behavior is itself shameful.
C. denying a crime is as bad as committing the original crime.

3. Hermione explains that her relationship with Polixenes was characterized by

A. ignorance.
B. foolishness.
C. properness.

4. When Leontes says "As you were past all shame . . . so past all truth" (lines 67 68), he is dismissing
Hermione's claim to innocence on the grounds that

A. immoral people lie easily.


B. evidence has proven her guilt.
C. Apollo's oracle will convict her.

5. The irony of Leontes' statement "Thy brat hath been cast out . . . No father owning it" (lines 70 71) is
directly revealed by the later statement

A. " 'the King shall live without an heir, if that which is lost be not found' " (lines 116 117).
B. "the heavens themselves / Do strike at my injustice" (lines 132 133).
C. "This news is mortal to the Queen" (line 135).

6. When Hermione says "The bug which you would fright me with I seek" (line 76), she means that she

A. knows she has shamed herself and therefore has become suicidal.
B. wants to be able to allowed to choose the method of her execution.
C. would rather die than live without that which makes her life complete.

7. Hermione declares her greatest loss is her

A. two children.
B. royal position.
C. husband's love.
8. The lines that suggest most strongly that Leontes' accusations are groundless are

A. "You, my lord, best know, / Who least will seem to do so" (lines 11 12).
B. "I do confess / I loved him as in honor he required" (lines 44 45).
C. "condemned / upon surmises, all proofs sleeping else / But what you jealousies awake" (lines 95
97).

9. Leontes sees his son's death as being

A. confirmation of his suspicions.


B. a sign of Apollo's misjudgment.
C. punishment for his own misjudgment.

10. The aspect of human nature that this scene mainly illustrates is the way in which

A. innocence invites tragedy.


B. vulnerability to error is common.
C. ungoverned emotion clouds perception.

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