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Reading comprehension and vocabulary. Test 4.

Questions 1-10 refer to the following passage.

The most familiar speleothems (from the Greek word spelaion for cave and thema for
deposit), the decorative dripstone features found in caves, are stalactites and stalagmites.
Stalactites hang downward from the ceiling of the cave and are formed as drop after drop of
water slowly trickles through cracks in the cave roof. Stalagmites grow upward from the floor
of the cave, generally as a result of water dripping from an overhead stalactite. A column
forms when a stalactite and a stalagmite grow until they join. A "curtain" or "drapery" begins
to form on an inclined ceiling when drops of water trickle along a slope.
Natural openings on the surface that lead to caves are called sinkholes, or swallow
holes. Streams sometimes disappear down these holes and flow through the cavern. Rivers
may flow from one mountain to another through a series of caves. Some caverns have
sinkholes in their floors. Water often builds up a rim of dripstone around the edge of the hole.
Dripping water often contains dissolved minerals as well as acid. These minerals too will be
deposited; and they may give rich coloring to the deposits. If minerals in the water change,
layers of different colors may be formed.1947

1. Stalagmites are formed by
(A) drops of water which enter through cracks in the ceiling.
(B) underground rivers which flow through the cave.
(C) water dripping from an overhead stalactite.
(D) water which trickles down a slope.
2. Sinkholes are
(A) the decorative dripstone features found in caves.
(B) natural openings on the surface that lead to caves.
(C) colorful layers of mineral deposits.
(D) None of the above
3. Which speleothem grows upward from the floor ?
(A) Stalagmites
(B) Stalactites
(C) Sinkholes
(D) Curtains
4. An "inclined ceiling" is one which
(A) is straight.
(B) is crooked.
(C) is slanted.
(D) is wet.
5. Which of the following are NOT caused by dripping water ?
(A) Stalagmites
(B) Stalactites
(C) Slopes
(D) Curtains
6. The information in the passage is most relevant to which field of study ?
(A) Geography
(B) Archaeology
(C) Physics
(D) Geology
7. "Curtains" can also be called
(A) columns.
(B) draperies.
(C) stalagmites.
(D) rims.
8. The word speeleothem comes frome which language?
(A) Latin
(B) French
(C) Greek
(D) English
9. Stalagmites are formed by
(A) drops of water which enter the cave through cracks in the ceiling.
(B) underground rivers which flow through the cave.
(C) water which seeps through the cave floor.
(D) water which trickles down a slope.
10. Which speleothem hangs from the ceiling of a cave?
(A) Stalagmites
(B) Stalactites
(C) Columns
(D) Rimstones

Questions 11-20 refer to the following passage

Horse owners who plan to breed one or more mares should have a working knowledge
of heredity and know how to care for breeding animals and foals. The number of mares bred
that actually conceive varies from about 40 to 85 percent, with the average running less than
50 percent. Some mares that do conceive fail to produce living foals. This means that, on
average, two mares are kept a whole year to produce one foal, and even then, some foals are
disappointments from the standpoint of quality.
By careful selection, breeders throughout history have developed various kinds of
horses with a wide variety of characteristics to suit many different needs. The Great Horse
of the Middle Ages, for example, was bred for size and strength to carry a heavily armored
knight. The massive horses of such breeds are often called "cold blooded." The Arabs bred
lithe desert horses that were small and swift. These animals are often referred to as "hot
blooded. " Cross-breeding of hot-blooded and cold-blooded horses for certain characteristics
produced breeds ranging from riding horses to draft horses.
The Thoroughbred is considered by many to be the highpoint of elegance and fine
selective breeding. Many persons mistakenly apply the name Thoroughbred to any purebred
horse. But a Thoroughbred is a distinct breed of running horses that traces its ancestry through
the male line directly back to three Eastern stallions: the Byerly Turk, the Darley Arabian,
and the Godolphin Barb.
For convenience the breeds of horses are often divided into three major groups: (1)
ponies, (2) heavy, or draft horses, and (3) light horses.

11. Which of the following is not an example of an Eastern stallion?
(A) Byerly Turk
(B) Darley Arabian
(C) Thoroughbred
(D) Godolphin Barb
12. Which of the following was NOT a characteristic of the Great Horse of the MiddleAges?
(A) Large size
(B) Swiftness
(C) Strength
(D) "Cold-bloodedness"
13. It can be inferred from the passage that cold-blooded and hot-blooded horses were cross-bred for what reason?
(A) Such cross-breeding was a safer means of reproduction.
(B) Cross-bred horses were preferred by Arabs.
(C) By cross-breeding, horses with desirable mixed characteristics could be produced.
(D) Cross-breeding produced Thoroughbred horses.
14. In line 11, "lithe" most nearly means
(A) graceful.
(B) clumsy.
(C) massive.
(D) bulky.
15. Which of the following is NOT one of the major divisions of horse breeds?
(A) Draft horses
(B) Ponies
(C) Foals
(D) Light horses
16. According to the passage, which of the following horses is considered to be the finest purebred?
(A) Darley Arabian
(B) Thoroughbred
(C) Godolphin Barb
(D) Byerly Turk
17. To conceive is to
(A) become sick.
(B) become pregnant.
(C) die.
(D) be born.
18. A foal is a
(A) male horse.
(B) female horse.
(C) old horse.
(D) baby horse.
19. The average amount of mares bred which actually conceive is less than what percent?
(A) 40
(B) 85
(C) 50
(D) 75
20. A mare is a
(A) male horse.
(B) baby horse.
(C) female horse.
(D) old horse.

Questions 21-30 refer to the following passage.

Animals that produce large amounts of offspring depend upon the sheer size of the
litter for the perpetuation of their species. The young mature very quickly and are not
educated, as the parents are usually involved with obtaining their own food and with
reproduction. Should some of the offspring become endangered, the parent will not interfere,
because it is not expected that all the young survive, which is the reason for a large litter.
One animal that produces large litters is the hamster. A female hamster is able to bear
young when she is six weeks to two months old. The gestation period is about 16 days.
Although an average litter size is from five to ten, hamsters commonly have as few as three
or as many as a dozen offspring at a time. Mothers will sometimes eat their own young,
particularly when the number of offspring is large. Females may produce litters up to an age
of about 15 months at monthly intervals. The blind, hairless young begin to grow fur in two
to three days. Their eyes open after about two weeks. After ten days they begin eating solid
food, though the mother will continue to nurse them for about two more weeks. In captivity,
a typical hamster may live for two to three years.

21. The gestation period for hamsters is about
(A) nine months.
(B) one month.
(C) 16 days.
(D) six weeks.
22. Female hamsters will sometimes eat their young for what reason?
(A) Hunger
(B) Because of a large number of offspring
(C) Deformed babies
(D) The young mature too quickly
23. Female hamsters may reproduce as young as
(A) six weeks old.
(B) six months old.
(C) 15 months old.
(D) two weeks old.
24. "Perpetuation" in line 2 means
(A) extinction.
(B) annihilation.
(C) variation.
(D) continuation.
25. Hamsters can produce offspring until what age?
(A) two years
(B) six weeks
(C) 15 months
(D) 16 days
26. What is the tone of the passage?
(A) Argumentative
(B) Informative
(C) Biased
(D) Farcical
27. What is the BEST title for this passage ?
(A) "Endangered Animal Litters"
(B) "Reasons for Large Litters"
(C) "Parents of Large Litters"
(D) "Educating Litters"
28. What is a litter?
(A) The amount of parents an animal has
(B) The amount of garbage an animal has
(C) The amount of offspring an animal has
(D) The amount of siblings an animal has
29. Why would an animal parent not be able to care for its litter?
(A) It is busy reproducing and food gathering.
(B) It is busy educating the litter.
(C) It interferes with the litter.
(D) It is busy playing.
30. Which of the following is NOT a reason for a large litter?
(A) The young are not expected to live.
(B) The young are educated.
(C) The parents are too busy to protect them.
(D) The young mature quickly..

Questions 31-40 refer to the following passage.

Juan Ponce de Leon was the first Spaniard to touch the shores of the present United
States. As Columbus had not remotely realized the extent of his momentous discovery, so de
Leon never dreamed that his "island" of Florida was a peninsular extension of the vast North
American continent. After coming to the New World with Columbus in 1493, he had led the
occupation of Puerto Rico in 1508 and governed it from 1509 to 1512. In 1509, de Leon
started a colony at Caparra, later abandoned in favor of San Juan. He was one of the first
adelantadosmen who "advanced" the Spanish Empire by conquest, subjugation of the
Indians, and establishment of a semi-military government.
In Puerto Rico he heard a legend about an island called Bimini, where there was said
to be a spring that restored youth to all who bathed in it. It is said he was seeking this spring
when he discovered Florida.
He sailed from Puerto Rico in March 1513. On Easter Sunday he sighted the coast. A
few days later he landed on Florida's east coast, near what is now St. Augustine. He named
the place La Florida after the Spanish term for Easter SundayPascua florida, or "flowery
feast." He then sailed around the peninsula and up the west coast. He returned to Florida in

31. In what year did de Leon discover Florida?
(A) 1508
(B) 1513
(C) 1521
(D) 1492
32. What was the title of the first colony started by Ponce de Leon in Puerto Rico?
(A) San Juan
(B) La Florida
(C) Caparra
(D) St. Augustine
33. What was the name of the legendary island where the fabled Fountain of Youth was said to be?
(A) Cuba
(B) Bimini
(C) Atlantis
(D) Bermuda
34. Which of the following is implied by the passage?
(A) Ponce de Leon was the true discoverer of the North American continent.
(B) Ponce de Leon rejected the philosophy of the adelantados.
(C) Ponce de Leon may have discovered Florida "by accident."
(D) Ponce de Leon's greatest contribution was his discovery of the Fountain of Youth.
35. Pascua florida is the Spanish term for which holiday?
(A) Easter Sunday
(B) Christmas
(C) Thanksgiving
(D) Palm Sunday
36. According to the passage, which of the following was NOT a means of advancement of the Spanish Empire in the New World?
(A) Conquest
(B) Subjugation of Indians
(C) Establishment of semi-military governments
(D) Treaties and negotiation
37. From the passage, it can be assumed that a "peninsula" is
(A) a volcanic island.
(B) an island completely surrounded by water.
(C) an extension of land surrounded almost completely bywater.
(D) an island inhabited by Indians.
38. The tone of the word "advanced" in line 7 suggests that
(A) adelantados favor progress.
(B) progress could not have occurred without subjugation.
(C) progress is related to conquest and subjugation.
(D) conquest, subjugation, and semi-military government are not progress.
39. According to the passage. Ponce de Leon believed the land he discovered was
(A) part of the .Bahamas.
(B) the new "island" of Florida.
(C) the mainland of the United States.
(D) Puerto Rico.
40. Ponce de Leon was classified as an adelantado because he
(A) was a great explorer.
(B) was the first Spaniard to see the shores of the United States.
(C) conquered and ruled by military force.
(D) claimed Florida for the King of Spain.


Questions 41 to 50 refer to the following passage:

Any list of the greatest thinkers in history contains the name of the brilliant physicist
Albert Einstein. His theories of relativity led to entirely new ways of thinking about time,
space, matter, energy, and gravity. Einstein's work led to such scientific advances as the
control of atomic energy, even television as a practical application of Einstein's work.
In 1902 Einstein became an examiner in the Swiss patent office at Bern. In 1905, at
age 26, he published the first of five major research papers. The first one provided a theory
explaining Brownian movement, the zig-zag motion of microscopic particles in suspension.
The second paper laid the foundation for the photon, or quantum, theory of light. In it he
proposed that light is composed of separate packets of energy, called quanta or photons, that
have some of the properties of particles and some of the properties of waves. A third paper
contained the "special theory of relativity" which showed that time and motion are relative
to the observer, if the speed of light is constant and the natural laws are the same everywhere
in the universe. The fourth paper was a mathematical addition to the special theory of
relativity. Here Einstein presented his famous formula, E = m(cc), known as the energy mass
equivalence. In 1916, Einstein publishedhis general theory of relativity. In it he proposed that
gravity is not a force, but a curve in the space-time continuum, created by the presence of
Einstein spoke out frequently against nationalism, the exalting of one nation above all
others. He opposed war and violence and supported Zionism, the movement to establish a
Jewish homeland in Palestine. When the Nazis came to power in 1933, they denounced his
ideas. He then moved to the United States. In 1939 Einstein learned that two German chemists
had split the uranium atom. Einstein wrote to President Franklin D. Roosevelt warning him
that this scientific knowledge could lead to Germany developing an atomic bomb. He
suggested the United States begin its own atomic bomb research.

41. Einstein's primary work was in the area of
(A) chemistry.
(B) biology.
(C) physics.
(D) engineering.
42. Which of the following inventions is mentioned in the passage as a practical application of Einstein's discoveries?
(A) Radio
(B) Automobiles
(C) Computers
(D) Television
43. According to the passage, Einstein supported all of the following except
(A) the establishment of a Jewish homeland in Palestine.
(B) nationalism.
(C) atomic bomb research in the United States.
(D) the defeat of the Nazis.
44. In which country was Einstein born?
(A) Switzerland
(B) United States
(C) Germany
(D) Israel
45. What is "Brownian movement"?
(A) The zig-zag motion of microscopic particles in suspension
(B) The emission of electrons from solids when struck by light
(C) The motion of photons in light
(D) The basis of the theory of relativity
46. Einstein was a citizen of all of the following countries EXCEPT
(A) Belgium.
(B) Germany.
(C) United States.
(D) Switzerland.
47. It is clear from the tone of the passage that the author feels
(A) Einstein's work in physics was somewhat tarnished by his conservative political views.
(B) Albert Einstein was one of the most brilliant thinkers in history.
(C) Einstein's work in physics, though theoretically impressive, led to few practical applications.
(D) Einstein's theories have been consistently proven incorrect.
48. According to Einstein's special theory of relativity,
(A) all properties of matter and energy can be explained in a single mathematical formula.
(B) light is composed of separate packets of energy.
(C) time and motion are relative to the observer.
(D) some solids emit electrons when struck by light.
49. In line 18, the word "exalting" most nearly means
(A) elevation.
(B) criticism.
(C) support.
(D) elimination.
50. According to Einstein, light is composed of separate packets of energy called
(A) electrons.
(B) photoelectrons.
(C) quanta.
(D) gamma rays.


Questions 51-60 refer to the following passage.

We believe the Earth is about 4.6 billion years old. At present we are forced to look
to other bodies in the solar system for hints as to what the early history of the Earth was like.
Studies of our moon, Mercury, Mars, and the large satellites of Jupiter and Saturn have
provided ample evidence that all these large celestial bodies were bombarded by smaller
objects in a wide variety of sizes shortly after the larger bodies had formed. This same
bombardment must have affected Earth as well. The lunar record indicates that the rate of
impacts decreased to its present low level about 4 billion years ago. On Earth, subsequent
erosion and crustal motions have obliterated the craters that must have formed during this
Scientists estimate the Earth's age by measuring the ratios of various radioactive
elements in rocks. The oldest Earth rocks tested thus far are about 3 1/3 billion years old. But
no one knows whether these are the oldest rocks on Earth. Tests on rocks from the moon and
on meteorites show that these are about 4.6 billion years old. Scientists believe that this is the
true age of the solar system and probably the true age of the Earth

51. In line 8, the word "obliterated" means
(A) created.
(B) destroyed.
(C) changed.
(D) eroded.
52. According to this passage, how do scientists estimate the age of the Earth?
(A) By measuring the ratios of radioactive elements in rocks
(B) By examining fossils
(C) By studying sunspots
(D) By examining volcanic activity
53. Scientists estimate the age of the Earth as
(A) 3 1/3 billion years old.
(B) 4 billion years old.
(C) 4.6 billion years old.
(D) 6 billion years old.
54. Which of the following processes led to the obliteration of the craters formed by the bombardment of the Earth by celestial bodies?
(A) Volcanic activity
(B) Solar radiation
(C) Gravity
(D) Crustal motions
55. According to the passage, why are scientists forced to look at other bodies in the solar system to determine the early history of the Earth?
(A) Human alteration of the Earth
(B) Erosion and crustal motions
(C) Solar flares
(D) Deforestation
56. What is the BEST title for this passage?
(A) "Determining the Age of the Earth"
(B) "Determining the Age of the Solar System"
(C) "Erosion and Crustal Motion of Earth"
(D) "Radioactive Elements in Rocks"
57. Which of the following bodies was NOT studied to give evidence that the Earth was bombarded in its early history?
(A) Mars
(B) Mercury
(C) Jupiter
(D) Earth's moon
58. Bombardment of the Earth at one time by various sized bodies is
(A) inferred from what happened on other planetary bodies.
(B) documented fact.
(C) proven by the lunar record.
(D) indicated by erosion.
59. The level of impacts of the bombardments of Earth have
(A) decreased to below normal.
(B) increased to a current high.
(C) increased after a periodic low.
(D) decreased to a current low.
60. In line 6, the word "bombardment" means
(A) an avoidance.
(B) an assault.
(C) an effect.
(D) a cause.

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