The door of the jail being flung open from within, there appeared, in the first place, like a black shadow emerging into sunshine, the grim and grisly presence of the town-beadle, with a sword by his side and his staff of office in his hand.
Which best describes the purpose of the words “black shadow,” “grim,” “grisly,” and “sword”?
A. To impart a sorrowful mood
B. To impart a solemn mood
C. To establish the early morning setting
D. To establish the militant jailhouse setting
A. Hester resists serving her sentence in front of the crowd.
B. Hester climbs the stairs and stands on the scaffolding.
C. Hester is restrained on the scaffolding with arms and face secured.
D. Hester hears a remark from the crowd about “Divine Maternity.”
Lastly, in lieu of these shifting scenes, came back the rude market-place of the Puritan settlement, with all the townspeople assembled and levelling their stern regards at Hester Prynne,—yes, at herself,—who stood on the scaffold of the pillory, an infant on her arm, and the letter A, in scarlet, fantastically embroidered with gold thread, upon her bosom!
What is the effect of the underlined words in this excerpt?
A. They impart a mood of distress and shame.
B. They impart a mood of nostalgia and self-reflection.
C. They provide a visual image of the violent setting.
D. They provide historical insight into the Puritan setting.
“Goodwives,” said a hard-featured dame of fifty, “I’ll tell ye a piece of my mind. It would be greatly for the public behoof, if we women, being of mature age and church-members in good repute, should have the handling of such malefactresses as this Hester Prynne. What think ye, gossips? If the hussy stood up for judgment before us five, that are now here in a knot together, would she come off with such a sentence as the worshipful magistrates have awarded?”
What is the meaning of this excerpt?
A. The speaker believes that she and her peers ought to be in charge of assigning sentences in cases like Hester’s.
B. The speaker believes she and her peers ought to be acknowledged for their good standing in the community.
C. The speaker believes that the older women of the church ought to be allowed to serve as magistrates.
D. The speaker believes that the magistrates have been too strict in their handling of Hester’s case.
Meagre, indeed, and cold, was the sympathy that a transgressor might look for, from such bystanders at the scaffold. On the other hand, a penalty which, in our days, would infer a degree of mocking infamy and ridicule, might then be invested with almost as stern a dignity as the punishment of death itself.
Which best describes the purpose of the words “meagre,” “scaffold,” “stern,” and “punishment of death”?
A. They impart a judgmental, reproachful mood.
B. They impart a gloomy and woeful mood.
C. They establish the municipal setting of the town square.
D. They establish the boisterous setting at the scaffold.
Before this ugly edifice, and between it and the wheel-track of the street, was a grass-plot, much overgrown with burdock, pig-weed, apple-peru, and such unsightly vegetation, which evidently found something congenial in the soil that had so early borne the black flower of civilized society, a prison.
Which best describes the effect of the words “ugly,” “overgrown,” “pig-weed,” and “unsightly vegetation”?
A. They impart an angry mood.
B. They impart a mysterious mood.
C. They establish a rural, agricultural setting.
D. They establish a rough, untamed setting.
“This woman has brought shame upon us all, and ought to die. Is there not law for it? Truly there is, both in the Scripture and the statute-book. Then let the magistrates, who have made it of no effect, thank themselves if their own wives and daughters go astray!”
What part of the plot does this excerpt reveal?
A. It is part of the exposition that reveals the spirituality of Puritans.
B. It is part of the exposition that introduces the townspeople.
C. It is part of the rising action that reveals public sentiment toward Hester.
D. It is part of the rising action that introduces a physical confrontation.
A. Onlookers react to the beadle’s cruelty.
B. Onlookers react to the innocence of the baby.
C. Onlookers react to Hester’s embroidered letter.
D. Onlookers react to Hester’s humility.
A. Officials lock the jail door.
B. A rose bush is planted.
C. A crowd gathers at the jail.
D. Puritans visit the cemetery.
In accordance with this rule, it may safely be assumed that the forefathers of Boston had built the first prison-house, somewhere in the vicinity of Cornhill, almost as seasonably as they marked out the first burial-ground, on Isaac Johnson’s lot, and round about his grave, which subsequently became the nucleus of all the congregated sepulchres in the old church-yard of King’s Chapel.
What is the meaning of this excerpt?
A. The prison and cemetery were built early, with the cemetery expanding in size from its original plot.
B. The prison was built near Cornhill, and the cemetery was built on an important man’s property.
C. Just as Puritans gathered at the prison, they also gathered at the cemetery and the church.
D. The forefathers of Boston chose the two most famous landmarks: the prison and the cemetery.