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Great Works of Literature

written by: Gilligan
Take this quiz on literary milestones.

Question 1:

Dante Alighieri (1265-1321) probably began this work in 1306. Its first canto begins with: "Midway upon the journey of our life I found myself within a forest dark, for the straightforward pathway had been lost."
The Divine Comedy
Gargantua and Pantagruel
The Decameron
Troilus and Cressida

Question 2:

The Canterbury Tales is a collection of stories written by Geoffrey Chaucer. It recounts the tales told by individuals on a pilgrimage to the shrine of Saint Thomas Becket at Canterbury Cathedral. Which of the following was not a character in this work?
Tax Collector

Question 3:

In the novel Don Quixote by Spanish author Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, who is the witty squire and companion to Alonso Quixano?
Aldonzo Lorenzo
Antonio de la Gandara
Sancho Panza
Che Guevara

Question 4:

In this tragic play by William Shakespeare, three witches tell a general in the army of King Duncan that he will "never be vanquish'd until Great Birnam wood to high Dunsinane Hill shall come against him".
The Tempest
Titus Andronicus

Question 5:

This 1971 novel by Anthony Burgess relates the story of a fifteen-year-old boy named Alex, who, with his gang members (known as "droogs") roam the streets at night, committing violent crimes for enjoyment.
Fahrenheit 451
A Clockwork Orange
Helter Skelter
Catcher in the Rye

Question 6:

The famous line "In the room the women come and go, talking of Michelangelo" is from the poem "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" by this influential 20th century poet.
W. H. Auden
Robert Frost
Robert Browning
T. S. Eliot

Question 7:

This great work of Russian literature by Fyodor Dostoevsky features the character Raskolnikov, an impoverished St. Petersburg student who kills an unscrupulous pawnbroker.
Dead Souls
The Brothers Karamazov
And Quiet Flows the Don
Crime and Punishment

Question 8:

View the provided image.
This author penned the macabre tales The Fall of the House of Usher in 1839 and The Masque of the Red Death in 1842.
Edgar Allan Poe
C. Auguste Dupin
Oscar Wilde
Marcel Proust

View Image

Question 9:

View the provided image.
Folk musician Woody Guthrie said this 1939 novel of the Great Depression "shows the banker men that broke us and the dust that choked us, and comes right out in plain old English and says what to do about it."
The Grapes of Wrath
Far From the Maddening Crowd
The Keep on the Borderlands
The Heart is a Lonely Hunter

View Image

Question 10:

This novel by Charles Dickens, published in 1850, is considered his most autobiographical. It begins with: "Whether I shall turn out to be the hero of my own life, or whether that station will be held by anybody else, these pages must show." Characters include Wilkins Micawber and Uriah Heep.
Great Expectations
Bleak House
David Copperfield
A Tale of Two Cities

Question 11:

"As Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from uneasy dreams he found himself transformed in his bed into a gigantic insect" is the opening line to this famous work of German fiction by Franz Kafka.
The Metamorphosis
Thus Spoke Zarathustra
As I Lay Dying
Heart of Darkness

Question 12:

This novel by Charlotte Brontë includes the character Mr. Rochester, whose wife is a violent lunatic.
The Turn of the Screw
A Room with a View
Wuthering Heights
Jane Eyre

Question 13:

View the provided image.
In a 17th century play by Christopher Marlowe a necromancer sells his soul to the devil. What is the name of this character who conjures Lucifer?

View Image

Question 14:

"Fifteen men on the dead man's chest— Yo-ho-ho, and a bottle of rum!" is a famous line from Treasure Island, a novel by this author published in 1883.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
William Makepeace Thackeray
James Fenimore Cooper
Robert Louis Stevenson

Question 15:

"Death be not proud, though some have called thee mighty and dreadfull, for, thou art not so" is a portion of a work by this poet who lived from 1572-1631.
Lord Byron
John Milton
John Donne
William Blake

Question 16:

In what 1851 novel would you find the characters Ishmael, Captain Ahab, Queequeg and Starbuck?
Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C. S. Lewis
Moby Dick by Herman Melville
The Jungle by Upton Sinclair

Question 17:

This early Anglo-Saxon work, possibly from the 800's, features the antagonist Grendel, a descendant of Cain who invades the mead-hall of the Danes and eats the men within. The title character ultimately beheads Grendel and keeps it as a trophy.
Oedipus Rex
Epic of Gilgamesh
Morte Arthure


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