illustration of Isabel Archer with a hand fan positioned between two silhouetted profiles

The Portrait of a Lady

by Henry James

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Chapters 11-15 Questions and Answers

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Study Questions
1. What is Mrs. Touchett’s opinion of American women?

2. When did Caspar last see Isabel?

3. Prior to proposing to her, how many hours has Lord Warburton spent with Isabel?

4. Why does Henrietta want Isabel to see Caspar Goodwood?

5. What is the “big bribe” Isabel refuses?

6. To what Shakespearean character does Ralph compare himself?

7. Besides Gardencourt, does Daniel Touchett, the wealthy American, own other property in Europe?

8. Do Isabel and Henrietta stay with Ralph while visiting London?

9. According to Warburton, who wears the “Silver Cross”?

10. Does Isabel admire her friend Henrietta?

Answers
1. She says they are the “slaves of slaves.”

2. Caspar saw Isabel three months ago in Albany.

3. Warburton calculates he has spent 26 hours with her.

4. Henrietta believes Isabel is changing and becoming too Europeanized; she thinks her friend should reconsider her relationship with Caspar, her American suitor.

5. The “big bribe” is what Isabel calls Lord Warburton’s marriage proposal.

6. Ralph says, “I’m only Caliban; I’m not Prospero,” referring to two characters from The Tempest.

7. Daniel Touchett owns Gardencourt, his grand country estate, as well as a mansion in London. Mrs. Touchett owns a villa in Italy.

8. Isabel and Henrietta stay at Pratt’s Hotel by themselves; Ralph stays alone at his father’s London mansion.

9. The Silver Cross, a badge of rank, is worn by the “eldest daughters of Viscounts.”

10. Isabel has great regard for her friend and calls Henrietta a “brilliant woman.”

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