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Midterm Examination. CLST 1003 Fall, 2001.

University of Arkansas

October 12, 2001

 

Students will write short answers to between ten and fifteen questions assigned for class. These will come from the following:

 

From Beard and Henderson , CLASSICS: A VERY SHORT INTRODUCTION chapters 1-3:

What is the etymology of the English word "museum"? What is the nature of the goddesses after whom it takes its name, and how does our concept of 'museum' relate to them?

How did young artists at the beginning of the 19th century learn their craft, and how did the work of Cockerell and others contribute to this training?

What was John Keats' contribution to the English vision of Greece? What did Keats' critics find fault with in his poetry?

What did Greece represent to the nineteenth-century Europeans, in contrast to Italy?

How is a modern visit to Bassae similar to and different from that of Cockerell and his contemporaries?

From Beard and Henderson CLASSICS: A VERY SHORT INTRODUCTION 4-6:

When did Pausanias live, what did he write, and where was he from? Why is Pausanias so important in understanding the temple of Apollo at Bassae?

What recent discoveries have shown that the base of our knowledge of classical texts is still growing?

What did the Romans do to pass on the ideals of classical Greek sculpture?

What did Keats and Shakespeare have in common -- in relation to classical studies?

What do the authors mean when they say that the classics sometimes underwent "bowdlerizing"? What examples do they give? (and what is the etymology of the verb "bowdlerize")?

Beard and Henderson CLASSICS: A VERY SHORT INTRODUCTION 7-10

What is "one of the hardest aspects of the original appearance of ancient temples for us now to come to terms with"? (70)

How did the external sculpture of the temple at Bassae proclaim that it was Apollo's? How -- and why -- was Zeus probably also represented in the exterior sculpture?

What helps our guesswork in reconstructing the sculpture decorating the temple at Bassae? What evidence do we depend on, in addition to the fragments of the sculptures themselves?

What are four of the "startling features" of the Bassae temple's architecture? (74) What "characteristic of much of classical culture" do these abnormalities show, and how is this related to Greek and Roman poetry?

How does the Amazon/Centaur frieze "set gender roles and the sanctity of the marital ordering of society together under divine protection"?

How is the god Pan related to the English word "panic," and what is the origin of the "Marathon" race?

Who coined the phrase ET IN ARCADIA EGO, and what does it mean?

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From Chapters 1-2 of Thomas R. Martin. Ancient Greece: From Prehistoric to Hellenistic Times

What did ancient Greeks eat, and what did they drink?

What kind of relationship with the sea did the ancient Greeks have?

What natural resources did the land of Greece provide to its ancient inhabitants?

What is the "traditional" explanation of megalithic and metallurgical technology's rise in Europe, and how have we had to revise this theory? What evidence have archaeologists used to revise the theory of cultural diffusion in the Neolithic period?

When did the first 'palaces' appear on Crete? Why is their society called 'Minoan'? What characterized the first Cretan palaces?

What does the lack of fortification walls imply about Minoan civilization? What do their wall paintings and grave goods tell us about their culture?

Why is the Bronze Age civilization on the Greek mainland called "Mycenaean," and what have archaeologists found at this culture's eponymous site? How do these artifacts relate to legends of the Trojan war?

Why was it important for the history of Crete that the Linear B tablets were written in Greek?

What does Martin call "the most plausible explanation of the destruction of the palaces of the mainland in the period after about 1200 B.C."? What scenario does he imagine? (34)

From Thomas R. Martin ANCIENT GREECE Chapter 3: THE DARK AGE

What years encompass the Dark Age in Greece, and why is it called a period of transition? (Transition between what?)

How did the economic life, population , and architecture of Dark Age Greece differ from those in Mycenaean times?

When were the Iliad and Odyssey first written down? What form of writing did the Greeks use to record these poems, and where did that form come from?

Where, when, and why were the Olympic games held? What part in the games did women have?

What is the etymology of the English word "gymnasium"?

Who was Hesiod? Where did he live? What did he compose? What stories does it tell? What parallels does his Theogony have in the non-Greek world? What is the etymology and meaning of the word "theogony"?

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From Iliad Questions

I

How would you describe the marital relationship between Zeus and Hera? How does the text support your opinion?

Why is Achilles so angry at Agamemnon? Why is Agamemnon so angry at Achilles?

II

Describe Thersites. How is he unlike the other Achaeans?

III

What is Priam's attitude towards Helen, and why does he feel as he does? How does Helen describe herself to Priam?

What physical description of Aphrodite does the epic give?

What is Helen's reaction to Aphrodite's command? What is Aphrodite's attitude towards Helen? What does this scene between them tell us of the power of "Love?"

IV

Why does Zeus love Troy, Priam, and the Trojans? What does he assume is Hera's attitude towards this city?

What are Hera's three favorite cities? How does this explain her hatred for Troy?

What is Agamemnon afraid that Trojans will say about him if Menelaus dies at Troy? How much does he worry about his brother, and how much about himself?

V

How do Hera and Athena respond to the wounding of Aphrodite? Why are they so cruel to her?

Who likens herself to Stentor, and why? (830ff.) What does the English word 'stentorian' mean?

VI

Why does Diomedes tell Glaucus the story of how Lycurgus persecuted Dionysus? Who are the "nurses of Dionysus"?

IX

What gifts has Agamemnon offered to Achilles to make him want to return to the war? What is the point of offering so much stuff?

XI

What is unusual about Nestor's cup? (663ff)

How does Patroclus act as physician? What kind of training did he have?

XII

Book 12 begins with a description of a future event. Why will the Achaean wall fall, and who will cause its destruction -- and by what means? What does this tell us about the relationship between mortals and immortals, and between nature and the gods?

XIV

Why is Sleep reluctant to help Hera after she seduces Zeus? What offer finally convinces Sleep to do Hera's bidding? How does this match the mood of the scene between Zeus and Hera following it?

XVI

What are Achilles' special instructions to Patroclus (16. 85ff)? What does he say about his sense of honor? What does the end of his speech say about the strength of his friendship with Patroclus? (102ff)

In Patroclus' arming scene, Homer specifically tells us that Patroclus does not take Achilles' spear. Why? How does this relate to Nestor's cup in book 11 (11.674) How does it relate to Achilles' cup in this book (229ff)? What is special about Achilles' horses?

What responsibility does Patroclus have for his own death? To what extent is Apollo responsible? To what extend it Hector responsible? To what extent is Achilles responsible? To what extent is Zeus responsible? Euphorbus? Fate?

XX

Who is Xanthus? Why is he a natural ally of the Trojans? (see Glossary of Names, p. 484) What is so elemental about his opposition to Hephaestus?

XXI

What does Achilles plan to do with the "twelve young Trojans" he takes alive?

Why does Achilles say that he will not heed Lycaon's supplication? Is any battlefield supplication heeded in this epic? What do you think the reason for this is?

XXII

What arguments does Hecuba use to persuade her son not to fight Achilles? Why do you think she is unsuccessful?

What are Achilles' two reactions to Hector's reasonable request for treating his corpse with respect (277ff, 375ff)? How can we account for these reactions?

XXIII

What is the substance of the message which Patroclus' Ghost gives to Achilles? What is Achilles'reaction?

XXIV

What does Priam do to bring Achilles to the verge of tears?

How does Achilles' attitude towards Priam compare with what we have learned about Achilles' character in the rest of the epic?

 

ODYSSEY QUESTIONS

I

Why is Zeus upset with mortals? What example does he give?

In what guise does Athena approach Odysseus' house? Why does she choose this disguise?

Why was Telemachus indignant when he saw Athena standing on the threshold of the outer porch?

What does Athena mean that Telemachus should build a 'barrow,' and what do you think it will be in it? What is the literal meaning of the English word "cenotaph?"

IV

What story does Helen tell that proves the cleverness (dolos) of Odysseus? What was her role in the story? How does this story foreshadow what Odysseus will do on Ithaca when he eventually arrives there?

What Trojan Horse story does Menelaus tell that proves the excellence of Odysseus? What is Helen's role in that myth?

V

Why does Odysseus elicit an oath from Calypso? What does this tell us about Odysseus' outlook on life?

When Poseidon's storm is overwhelming Odysseus, he wishes he had died in Troy. Why does he express that thought?

VI

How does Homer describe Mt. Olympus?

What wish does Odysseus make for Nausicaa? How can this be seen as a wish for himself? (183)

What does Nausicaa tell Odysseus that he must do in order to win his way back to his homeland? What does this tell us about gender roles in the palace of Scheria?

IX

How are the customs of xenia (hospitality) parodied in the Cyclops scene?

X

What kind of xenia (hospitality) does Circe offer to Odysseus' men?

XI

In the Underworld scene, what advice does Agamemnon's ghost offer to Odysseus? How does he compare and contrast Clytemnestra and Penelope?

In the Underworld scene, why did Telemonian Ajax's shade refuse to speak to Odysseus? 

XII

What is the Sirens' song? What about the song do you think is so appealing to Odysseus --judging from what you know about him already in this epic?

XIII

Why is Odysseus confused when he wakes up on Ithaca?

In what three ways does Athena help Odysseus before he goes to Eumaeus' hut?

XVII

How does a dog almost create a premature anagnorisis?

Who is the only Suitor not to give food to the beggar Odysseus? What does his name mean? Why is it appropriate? What does he do instead of give alms?

XVIII

How is Irus like the Suitors?

How is Odysseus' treatment of Irus a foreshadowing of future events?

XIX

How does Penelope reveal her own "metis" ("cunning intelligence")?

What details associate Odysseus with his maternal grandfather?

XXI

What reason does the disguised Odysseus give for wanting to try to string the bow? What is Antinous' reaction? Why does Antinous tell the story about the wine-crazed centaurs?

XXII

How did Athena help Odysseus and Telemachus in their battle against the suitors?

XXIV

What kind of relationship do Agamemnon and Achilles have in Hades? How does this compare or contrast with their relationship in the Iliad? How do you account for any differences?

How does Odysseus treat his father in this book? Why do you think that Odysseus treats his own father thus?

How does Athena play an important role in resolving the conflict on Ithaca? How does this summarize her role in the epic?

 

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