Essay Study Guide

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Study Guide for World Lit. Exam 2

1. What does Beowulf mean when he says that an undoomed man can escape death in battle if his courage is good?
If you are undoomed you might be able to escape death if you fight well in battle. If you don’t fight well or bravely you still have a possibility of death. If you are doomed, no matter how you fight you’re going to die.

2. In what ways is the code by which Beowulf fights like the Greek heroic code and different?
The Greek heroic code involves fighting bravely and winning honor and it is different because it applies to everyone and has a strong sense of doom.

3. Is there a good reason for Roland not to blow his horn when Oliver asks him to?
No. It is an element of pride that he
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Contrapasso is retribution for moral sin and that the punishment fits the crime. In hell the gluttons get to eat garbage for all of eternity.

10. In Dante’s “Inferno,” why are the souls in Hell there because they chose to be?
People have free will and are capable of rational decisions. So because of that if a person chooses to be gluten they choose to go to Hell.

11. Discuss three reasons why Virgil is Dante’s guide through Hell.
Virgil’s soul is stuck in limbo so he knows about Hell, the Aeneid is written about the underworld, and he is Dante’s model as a poet.

12. Why can Chaucer’s “The Miller’s Tale” be considered a parody of courtly love?
Two unmarried men were interested in a married wife. The two men battle for a women and in the end everyone is hurt except the women.

13. Discuss Chaucer’s “The Pardoner’s Tale” as an illustration of the Pardoner’s unvarying sermon theme: Radix malorum est cupititas. Begin by translating the Latin phrase.
The phrase means that money is the root of all evil. When treasure is found they all kill each other because of greed. He gives this sermon because it makes the congregation give more money that day, and he collects it.

14. In what ways do Sir Gawin and the Green Knight not follow the conventions of courtly love?
Gawin was offered courtly love but he turned it down; however, he does keep it secret. In

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