Douglass and Lincoln

Douglass, “Learning to Read and Write”


1. The overall organization of the excerpt can best be describe as

a. a chronological sequence of events

b. a first-person narrative with little analytical commentary by the speaker

c. an angry polemic against the evils of slavery

d. a statement of the narrator’s accomplishments followed by an explanation of how he reached it.

e. A sympathetic portrayal of a system that victimized both the oppressor and the oppressed


2. The final sentence in paragraph 1 includes which of the following?

I. understatement

II. figurative language

III. a complex sentence

a.   I only

a. II only

b. I and II only

c. II and III only

d. I, II, and III


3. In paragraph 2, Douglass uses all of the following EXCEPT

a. metonymy

b. personification

c. anaphora

d. allusion

e. connotation


4. What does Douglass mean by his description of his mistress as “an apt woman” (paragraph 2)?

a. admirable

b. appropriate

c. deceptive

d. intelligent

e. shrewd


5. What is the rhetorical purpose of paragraph 3?

a. to qualify points made in the previous paragraph

b. to emphasize how Douglass’s reactions turned to action

c. to offer a counterargument to the one presented in the previous paragraph

d. to qualify Douglass’s understanding of the importance of learning to read

e. to provide a transition from Douglass’s past experiences to those in the present


6. What is Douglass’s attitude toward the young boys he describes in paragraph 4?

a. angry reproach

b. studied indifference

c. condescending pity

d. reflective appreciation

e. grudging respect


7. In the context of this passage, all of the following are examples of irony EXCEPT

a. “lacked depravity” (paragraph 1)

b. “the simplicity of her soul” (paragraph 2)

c. “anxious to do better” (paragraph 2)

d. “first step had been taken” (paragraph 3)

e. “I was much better off in this regard” (paragraph 4)


8. The primary audience that Douglass is addressing in this excerpt is/are

a. slaveholders

b. Master Hugh’s family

c. Sympathizers to the abolitionist cause

d. Other ex-slaves

e. Readers of  The Columbian Orator


9. Which of the following best describes Douglass’s tone throughout paragraph 1 through 4?

a. sympathetic and reflective

b. respectful but firm

c. sarcastic and angry

d. passionate and determined

e. irate but carefully judicious



Lincoln, “Gettysburg Address”


1. The first sentence of the Gettysburg Address serves which of the following purpose?

a. it makes an assertion that will be qualified later

b. it forges a link with past event and ideals

c. it presents support for a claim to be stated later

d. it indicates that the speech will be a brief one

e. it makes reference to a previous speech


2. The diction of the piece support imagery relating to which of the following?

I. spirituality

II. new beginnings

III. duty

a. I only

b. II and III only

c. I and II only

d. I and III only

e. I, II, and III


3. Which of the following is included in the speech?

a. a declarative sentence

b. a sentence fragment

c. an imperative sentence

d. a periodic sentence

e. an interrogative sentence


4. In the second paragraph Lincoln appeals to which of the following?

I. ethos

II. pathos

III. logos


a. I only

b. I and II only

c. II and III only

d. III only

e. I, II, and III


5. The phrase “we can not hallow” serves which of the following purpose?

a. it extends the meaning of “dedicate” to a more spiritual dimension

b. it reverses the strict meaning first given through “dedicate”

c. it limits the broad implications suggested by the word “consecrate”

d. it anticipates and undermines objections to the meaning of “consecrate”

e. it defuses the religious connotations associated with “consecrate”


6. The address develops contrasts between each of the following EXCEPT

a. black and white

b. words and deeds

c. life and death

d. past and present

e. conflict and rest


7. Lincoln employs each of the following rhetorical devices EXCEPT

a. alliteration

b. anaphora

c. antithesis

d. asyndeton

e. apostrophe


8. In the address the speaker appeals to each of the following EXCEPT

a. equality

b. sacrifice

c. ambition

d. security

e. gratitude


9. The tone of the address is one of

a. pedantic solemnity

b. querulous seriousness

c. melancholy resignation

d. hopeful reverence

e. sanguine reflection