How moral are you? What is your attitude to morals, sex and honesty? The following personality test is featured in stranger and stranger by Robert McMullen. It purports to have been written by a "marriage expert and qualified psychologist". To take the test you must give your honest opinion about the morals and honesty of the four characters in our story of Sherwood Forest.
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“The Sheriff of Nottingham captured Little John and Robin Hood and imprisoned them in his maximum-security dungeon. Maid Marion begged the Sheriff for their release, pleading her love for Robin. The Sheriff agreed to release them only if Maid Marion spent the night with him. To this she agreed. The next morning the Sheriff released his prisoners. Robin at once demanded that Marion tell him how she persuaded the Sheriff to let them go free. Marion confessed the truth, and was bewildered when Robin abused her, calling her a slut, and saying that he never wanted to see her again. At this, Little John defended her, inviting her to leave Sherwood with him and promising life-long devotion. She accepted and they rode away together”.
Now in terms of realistic everyday standards of behaviour, rank Robin, Marion, Little John and the Sheriff in the order (1,2,3,4) in which you consider they showed the most morality and honesty. There is no “right” answer, and the following is the psychologist’s estimate of you for each of the 24 arrangements. Don't scroll down till you've made your list otherwise it won't work!
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ROBIN, MARION, SHERIFF, LITTLE JOHN: You find it hard to accept the permissive attitudes of others, or to convince them of the validity of your own standards. You are not disposed to trust people and do not have a very happy life. (Men) To you “love” involves sex and duty, rather than charity and forgiveness. (Women) You blame men for much of the unhappiness in your life.
ROBIN, MARION, LITTLE JOHN, SHERIFF: Your philosophy of life is a sad hodgepodge of the conventions of society, your own convictions and romanticism. You are not unkind, only staid and unimaginative. (Men) You see a woman as weak but desirable. (Women) Your resent the arrogance of men.
ROBIN, SHERIFF, MARION, LITTLE JOHN: (Men) We think you are unhappy, although you probably will not admit it. As a ruthless authoritarian you are as moral as it suits you and no more. You do not apply the same rules to men as you do to women. (Women) How worthless you seem to think women are.
ROBIN, LITTLE JOHN, MARION, SHERIFF: You are a moralist with conventional ideas, which some people would call old-fashioned. (Men) You probably consider yourself a fair-minded man in a world which falls badly below your standards. Your inhibitions and sense of guilt are in the way of your happiness. (Women) Unlucky in love? Perhaps you hope for too much in a man. Be a realist, not a romantic.
ROBIN, LITTLE JOHN, SHERIFF, MARION: You are conventional and puritanical. (Men) You moralise and see women as a great conspiracy against men, with sex as their principal weapon. You are missing a great deal in life. (Women) Your parents probably played a big part in the formation of such a guilt complex as yours. Your mind is in chains and it’s time you did something to free it.
LITTLE JOHN, ROBIN, SHERIFF, MARION: You are not easy to assess. Basically you are ruled by an inferiority complex and feelings of insecurity. How do you present yourself to the world? An idealist, a moralist, a conformist keeping up with the Joneses? (Men) Your conflicting views on sex and morality may lead to every sort of sexual problem. You have always feared women, probably starting with your mother. (Women) It is a shame you have not accepted the ideal of woman as the equal (and sometimes stronger) partner of man.
LITTLE JOHN, MARION, ROBIN, SHERIFF: You are fairly broadminded, romantic and reasonably contented. You value kindness greatly and try to live by your ideals. You do not conceal from yourself, or from others, your strong need for security, which may be either emotional or material. (Men) Perhaps you tend to idealise women and credit them with virtues they don’t possess. (Women) Your experiences of men have not all been happy, perhaps because you hope for a little too much?
LITTLE JOHN, MARION, SHERIFF, ROBIN: You are the slightly romantic realist. You respect truth, and are broadminded and flexible. Whether you are a man or a woman you are probably a happy person. You like people and they can readily make friends with you. You are not very adventurous, but this does not bother you.
LITTLE JOHN, SHERIFF, MARION, ROBIN: You too believe that morality is another word for common sense and suitability, and not something which is universally valid or a religious truth. Your feeling for security is strong, and you would rate reliability as one of your virtues. (Men) Your estimation of women as the inferior sex suggests that you are a little uncertain of them. (Women) You are more permissive about the morals of others than you are about your own.
LITTLE JOHN, SHERIFF, ROBIN, MARION: You are conventional, unimaginative, and something of a prude. It would be surprising if your love life was a roaring success. (Men) You have an old-world authoritarian attitude. One thing is sure – you have some sorry illusions about women. (Women) You accept a double standard of morality in which women are very much the “second sex”.
SHERIFF, ROBIN, MARION, LITTLE JOHN: (Men) We find it hard to imagine you leading a full, happy life. The warmth and give-and-take of love are not for you. Your sex life is ringed with unreality, and you neither understand nor appreciate women. (Women) If you really believe this is the right order, you baffle us completely.
MARION, SHERIFF, LITTLE JOHN, ROBIN: Such an emphatic rejection of ready-made values is probably partly camouflage. You hate to be thought weak or insecure. You value honesty, and despise humbug and hypocrisy. (Men) Women are very much part of your life, and you are – or perhaps would like to be – quite ruthless, both with women and life in general. (Women) You are tolerant about men and their failings – but we mean men, for you have no time for boys on men’s errands.
MARION, ROBIN, SHERIFF, LITTLE JOHN: You know the so-called facts of life, but not to enjoy life itself. You are not a realist and you are inclined to be stubborn. (Men) Women, you think, are either whores or angels, and you overestimate the differences between the sexes. A woman may find you difficult to live with. (Women) You are not sure whether truth and morality go hand in hand or are in opposition. You haven’t got a very high opinion of men.
MARION, ROBIN, LITTLE JOHN, SHERIFF: If you are not happy – and we suspect you are not – it may be because you feel guilty about your own emotions, and lack confidence in your opinions. (Men) No doubt you consider yourself a moral man, and a fair one. Your fuzzy ideas about morality may make their mark on your sex life. (Women) You are too concerned about what others think.
MARION, LITTLE JOHN, SHERIFF, ROBIN: You are essentially a contented person, even if you consider yourself a little superior. You are moral by your own standards, for you believe that morality is what best suits the occasion. (Men) You are sexually uninhibited, more romantic than you may appear, and more dependent on the approval of others than you care to admit. (Women) You like being a woman, you understand what love is, and frankly enjoy sex.
MARION, LITTLE JOHN, ROBIN, SHERIFF: We would expect you to be a happy, well-balanced person who likes people and is liked by others. You question whether many conventional views on morality are valid under all circumstances. (Men) Do we detect a sense of chivalry and idealism under the sophistication? (Women) You will expect high standards from the men to whom you give your love.
LITTLE JOHN, ROBIN, MARION, SHERIFF: You are the cautious type, neutral, and rather insecure. You would agree with the idea that everybody has his price – and in your own case it would not be high. (Men) You are sexually inhibited with an underlying distrust of women. (Women) At least one man has made you unhappy, and you are now on your guard.
SHERIFF, ROBIN, LITTLE JOHN, MARION: Although you make a brave show of being self-sufficient, beneath this you are unhappy and rather mixed up. (Men) You don’t understand women – probably you are afraid of them. You do not know what love is, and you are more likely to boast about your conquests in a bar than prove them in a bedroom. (Women) If men attract you at all, they probably are disastrously the wrong sort.
SHERIFF, MARION, ROBIN, LITTLE JOHN: If you are not living a happy life the cause is within yourself. You are a rebel... with a trace of spoiled child about you. You value truth above morality, but you are reasonably tolerant of those who disagree with you. (Men) Any problems you have are not likely to be centred in sex. (Women) Despite your experience and intelligence you are a bad judge of men.
SHERIFF, MARION, LITTLE JOHN, ROBIN: You claim to be a realist or even a cynic, but you are more emotional, romantic and truthful. (Men) Although you are by no means inhibited, your amorous adventures are as much a matter of fantasy as fact. (Women) You have been hurt in the past by men – or perhaps a particular man and will probably let it happen again.
SHERIFF, LITTLE JOHN, ROBIN, MARION: Not a moralising pattern, but... (Men) You share with many other men the idea that most women are fickle and inferior to men. Perhaps a view that you got from your father? Or as a reaction to a domineering mother? (Women) You have a pretty poor opinion of yourself, haven’t you?
SHERIFF, LITTLE JOHN, MARION, ROBIN: You have a confused, immature sense of values. You are erratic and stubborn, and inclined to get angry or sulk when you don’t get your own way. But at least you are not a moral hypocrite. (Men) “Love ‘em and leave ‘em” is the motto of a man who is basically afraid of women. (Women) Perhaps you would rather be a man than a woman?
MARION, SHERIFF, ROBIN, LITTLE JOHN: You associate morality with honesty and truth more than with religious values. You are impulsive and somewhat unpredictable. (Men) We suspect that you are a would-be lover rather than a very successful one. (Women) You are a realist and a rebel, a defender of women’s rights. You like men but despise weak ones.
Robert McMullen has tried without success to establish the copyright owner of this test. He would be very pleased to hear from the original author so that this matter may be clarified.