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Scarlet Letter Final Test



Part I: Character Identification: Match each character with the

appropriate description.

1. Hester Prynne
____________ A. Purchased at a great price;
she is sometimes called an
“imp” or “the child of the
2. Roger Chillingworth B. A respected member of the
____________ community, when he dies,
people claim to see an “A”
for “Angel” in the sky.
C. Sometimes called “the Black
3. Arthur Dimmesdale man,” his appearance
____________ deteriorates over time
because of his evil nature.
D. The sister of the Governor,
she is a witch who holds
4. Pearl meetings with the Devil in
____________ the woods.
E. The main character, she is
forced to wear an “A” for
committing adultery. She is
5. Governor Winthrop strong, passionate, and
____________ charitable.
F. The leader of the town, he
tries to take Pearl away from
Hester. He is hypocritical and
6. Governor Bellingham judgemental.
__________ G. Pearl’s real father, he is weak
and racked with guilt over his
sin. He beats himself and
holds nightly vigils to relieve
7. Mistress Hibbins his guilt.
Part II: Multiple Choice. Mark the letter of the best response
to each question.

8. What is the setting of the novel?

A. Verona, Italy
B. Bristol, England
C. Boston, Massachusetts
D. Rhode Island

9. Why is Hester in the jail at the beginning of the novel?

A. She has committed adultery
B. She is unmarried
C. She wears too fancy of clothes
D. She has talked badly about the Governor

10. In what century is the story of Hester Prynne set?

A. The sixteenth century
B. The seventeenth century
C. The eighteenth century
E. The nineteenth century

11. With whom has Chillingworth been living before he appears in

A. Another band of Puritans
B. Spanish settlers in Florida
C. Native Americans
D. Canadian fur trappers

12. How does Hester support herself financially?

A. As a prostitute
B. As a seamstress
C. As a nurse
D. As a farmhand

13. What is situated immediately outside the door of the prison in

which Hester is kept?
A. A rosebush
B. A pine tree
C. A gallows
D. A graveyard

14. Which of the following is a method Dimmesdale uses to punish

himself for his sins?
A. Scourging or whipping
B. Fasting
C. Vigils (extended periods of wakefulness and/or prayer)
D. All of the above

15. Next to whom is Hester buried at the end of the novel?

A. Dimmesdale
B. Chillingworth
C. Pearl
D. No one; her body is burned.
16. What natural phenomenon comes to symbolize both Dimmesdale’s
“sin” and Governor Winthrop’s “virtue”?
A. A lightning bolt
B. A meteor
C. A forest fire
D. A flood

17. How does Pearl acknowledge Dimmesdale as her father at his

A. By calling him “father”
B. By interrupting his sermon
C. By kissing him
D. By announcing that she has seen him with her mother

18. What mark can supposedly be seen on Dimmesdale’s chest?

A. A scarlet letter “A”
B. A tattoo
C. The mark of the devil
D. A red rose

19. How do Hester and Dimmesdale plan to escape their suffering?

A. By going to live with the Native Americans
B. By boarding a ship bound for Europe
C. By killing Chillingworth
D. By committing suicide

20. How does Pearl become wealthy?

A. She discovers pirates’ treasure.
B. She marries the governor’s son.
C. She inherits Chillingworth’s estate and marries a nobleman.
D. She becomes a famous actress and dancer.

21. Where do Hester and Pearl live?

A. In the poorhouse
B. In a house owned by Roger Chillingworth
C. In the forest
D. In an abandoned cottage on the outskirts of Boston

22. What does Chillingworth pretend to be?

A. A minister
B. A doctor
C. A madman
D. A scholar
23. What does Hester’s letter “A” eventually come to represent to the
A. “Able”
B. “Alone”
C. “Attractive”
D. “Admirable”

24. Which item is Hester NOT allowed to make for the people?
A. Gloves
B. Baby clothes
C. Bridal veils
D. Pastoral robes

25. At the end of the novel, the following individuals are up on the
scaffold together:
A. Hester, Pearl, and Dimmesdale
B. Dimmesdale and Hester only
C. Chillingworth, Dimmesdale, Hester, and Pearl
D. Hester, Pearl, and Chillingworth

Part III: True/ False: Identify if the answer is true or if it is


26. Hester stays in the Puritan community because leaving would

prove that society has control over her life—she wants to prove that
what they say does not matter to her.

27. Hawthorne put little or no thought into the names of his


28. Pearl calls Chillingworth the Devil.


29. Mistress Hibbins is executed as a witch.


30. Hester Prynne never returns to the Puritan settlement.


Part IV: Short answer questions. Answer each question with AT

LEAST A PARAGRAPH. You must pick THREE to answer. You
only need to answer THREE.
1. Discuss the function of the physical setting in The Scarlet Letter.
What is the relationship between the book’s events and the locations
in which these events take place? Do things happen in the forest that
could not happen in the town? What about time of day? Does night
bring with it a set of rules that differs from those of the daytime?

2. Is The Scarlet Letter a feminist novel? Had Hester not been a

woman, would she have received the same punishment? When Hester
undertakes to protect other women from gender-based persecution,
can we interpret her actions as pointing to a larger political statement
in the text as a whole?

3. Describe Chillingworth’s “revenge.” Why does he choose to torture

Dimmesdale and Hester when he could simply reveal that he is
Hester’s husband? What does this imply about justice? About evil?

4. Children play a variety of roles in this novel. Pearl is both a blessing

and a curse to Hester, and she seems at times to serve as Hester’s
conscience. The town children, on the other hand, are cruel and
brutally honest about their opinion of Hester and Pearl. Why are
children presented as more perceptive and more honest than adults?
How do children differ from adults in their potential for expressing
these perceptions?

5. Gothic novels feature supernatural events, gloomy atmospheres,

castles, and the mysterious. Gothic novels often feature a villain, who
is identifiable as the evil person by some sort of obvious deformity. In
Gothic novels, nature is often used to set the atmosphere of the story,
sometimes with seasons, and sometimes with darkness, light,
shadows, and moonlight. Does The Scarlet Letter fit within the “gothic
romantic” genre? How so? What about the novel is or is not “gothic