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Bless Me, Ultima
by Rudolfo Anaya 


Directions:  Answer these questions nightly in your journal.  Your quizzes will come directly from these study questions.
Chapter 1 Make a list of characters and identify them.  What order will you put them in? Explain why you chose this order.
Chapter 2 How does the river affect Tony?
What does Tony feel after witnessing the death of a man for the first time?
Why is it significant that he hears the owl as he is running? 
Chapter 3 What future does Antonio’s mother want for him?  Why?
What differences do Antonio’s mother and father have in their expectations for Antonio’s growing up and for his future?
Draw a large picture of a head and write words, phrases and pictures inside this head to describe Antonio's thoughts and feelings.
Chapter 4 Chapter 4 is full of new ideas for Tony.  Explain what he is thinking about:
  • Plants
  • His mother’s family and his father’s family
  • God and the Virgin Mary
Chapter 5 Draw Tony’s visit to his grandfather’s house.  What does it look and feel like?
Chapter 6 Tony goes to school for the first time.  Write down 10 words per category to describe how he was feeling:
  • At Ultima’s blessing: 
  • Walking to School: 
  • At School:
Chapter 7 This chapter describes the home-coming of Eugene, Andrew, and Leon, Tony’s brothers.  Briefly describe each one:
  • Eugene:
  • Andrew:
  • Leon:
Chapter 8 Chapter 8 is about Tony’s brothers, Leon, Andrew and Eugene.
  • Write a note that Tony might have written to his brothers after he heard what they wanted to do (make it a paragraph long)
Chapter 9 Tony’s brothers leave and Tony hears the story of the golden carp.
  • What does the dream mean about Tony’s life?
  • Explain the difference between Leon and Eugene, and Andrew.  Why did two leave and one stay home?
  • Why is it bad luck to catch and eat a carp?
Chapter 10 Write a brief summary of chapter 10 in which you answer the following:
  • Why does Ultima want Tony to go with her to cure Lucas?  What role does Tony play in the cure?
  • What do coyotes symbolize?  Why are the Tenorio sisters coyotes?
  • Ultima says these things to Antonio:    [pg. 97] “We shall test the young blood of the Lunas against the old blood of the past--” and [pg 98] “It is because good is always stronger than evil.  Always remember that, Antonio.  The smallest bit of good can stand against all the powers of evil in the world and it will emerge triumphant.” What do you think she is saying to Tony and what do you think she has in mind for him?
Chapter 11 Tony goes with Cico to see the golden carp.  Think of ten questions that Tony would have after seeing the carp, talking with Cico, hearing of the mermaid and the prophecy of the waters.  List the questions.
Chapter 12 Chapter 12 is an exciting chapter for Tony’s family and Ultima.  Draw six pictures that show what Tony is thinking throughout the events of the chapter. Caption each picture so it tells what Tony is thinking.
Chapter 13 Tony and his family are once again visiting El Puerto.  Write a summary of what happened while they were in El Puerto. 
Why was it important for Tenorio to have a mass for his daughter and have her buried in holy ground?
When the priest turned Tenorio’s request for mass away, what did this signify for the townspeople?
Tony has a dream (page 140).  What does he see in his dream, what do you think this could mean?
Chapter 14 In chapter 14, Tony has returned to school for his 3rd grade year.  One of the first things that happens is that Ernie challenges him about having a witch at home.  What does Tony do, and why does he do this?
What kind of person is Narciso?  Explain.

This chapter ends with a long dream that Tony has.  Do one of these:

  • Explain three of the things in the dream that show what his mind is concerned with.
  • Map his dream.
Chapter 15 Draw three circles on your paper. 
  • In circle #1, write down all of the things the townspeople thought of Narciso. 
  • In circle #2 write down the things Ultima reveals about Narciso. 
  • In the circle #3, write down the things Narciso might say about himself.
  • Label each circle.
Pick out a passage in the chapter that shows the maturing  relationship that Tony’s three brothers have with their father.  Write it down, then explain what it shows about the father and the three sons.
Chapter 16 Antonio wonders about a lot of things.  List three unanswered questions he has.
Describe Tony’s reaction to Tenorio in this chapter.
Chapter 17 Florence is a friend of Antonio’s. What major differences are there between the two boys?
In this chapter, Antonio is struggling with his beliefs about God. List the beliefs he is struggling with.  (For example: Why does God allow evil to exist?)
Chapter 18 Read pages 203 and 204.  Describe why Tony is so obsessed with his religious studies.  (hint:  what is he learning about people’s souls?)
Tony and his friends are getting ready for their first confession.  They are growing up and have finished their religious lessons (catechism).  The rowdy kids make Tony be the priest.  Describe what happened with Florence and Tony, when they were all playing the “priest” game:
Why do you suppose Tony “pardoned” Florence?
Chapter 19 Tony takes his First Communion.  What happens during communion?
What kinds of things was Tony expecting to happen at communion?
What do you think Tony would say after this First Communion experience?  Why?
Chapter 20 Read pages 222 & 223: 
  • How are things different now (summer has just begun) about communion, his friends, the Vitamin Kid? 
  • What do you suppose this means in Tony’s life?
Ultima is called upon to do another healing.  Describe it.
Describe Tony’s dream about his brothers.  What do you think it means about his feelings about his brothers?  Why?
Chapter 21 Describe the differences between Cico’s and Antonio’s thinking about God and gods.
Why does Tony want to tell Florence about the Golden Carp?
After Florence dies, Tony goes to grieve alone.  Now that Tony has pretty much accepted the story of the Golden Carp, what could he be thinking about Florence’s “soul” now?  Will Florence go to “hell” for not believing in God?  How might the Golden Carp “save” Florence?
Chapter 22 Why does Antonio’s family send him to spend the summer with his uncles?
What does Antonio discuss with his father on the way to his uncles in El Puerto?
 (It’s an important talk, what does Tony figure out from this talk?)
Tony grows up in this chapter.  He learns a great deal and much of his confusion is cleared up.  Find three passages in this chapter which show this new understanding and growth.  
Draw a  T and on the left side, copy the passages. On the right side, explain what the passages show about Tony’s growth and new understanding.