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Part 431 – Reading Comprehension Previous Year Questions

PassageIV
All art is, in an important sense, an escape. There is a sense in which the capacity to escape from his present experience, to use his accumulated consciousness of the past to project a vision of the future, is man’s greatest and distinguishing ability. We must not forget the force of Aristotle’s argument that poetry is valuable precisely because it shows men not simply as they are, but as they ought to be or (in terms more sympathetic to us today) as they are capable of becoming.

Q1. According to the author, all art is
(a) a reflection of life. (b) art
(c) an escape (d) an important sense.
Ans: (c) an escape

Q2. The author believes that man’s greatest and distinguishing ability is
(a) his ability to project the future
(b) his capacity to escape from his present experience
(c) his consciousness of the past
(d) None of the above.
Ans: (b) his capacity to escape from his present experience

Q3. Aristotle argues that poetry is
(a) valuable (b) an escape
(c) an art (d) All of the above
Ans: (a) valuable

Q4. Accordingly to the author _______ enables him to project a vision of the future
(a) man’s present experience
(b) man’s accumulated consciousness of the past
(c) man’s sympathetic nature
(d) None of the above.
Ans: (b)man’s accumulated consciousness of the past

Q5. Aristotle’s argument supports the view that poetry shows
(a) men not simply as they are
(b) what men ought to be
(c) what men are capable of becoming
(d) All of the above.
Ans: (d) All of the above.
PassageV
To avoid the various foolish opinions to which mankind are prone, no superhuman brain is required. A few simple rules will keep you free, not from all errors, but from silly errors. If the matter is one that can be settled by observation, make the observation yourself. Aristotle could have avoided the mistake of thinking that women have fewer teeth than men, by the simple device of asking Mrs. Aristotle to keep her mouth open while he counted. Thinking that you know when in fact you do not is a bad mistake, to which we are all prone. I believe myself that hedgehogs eat black beetles, because I have been told that they do; but if I were writing a book on the habits of hedgehogs, I should not commit myself until I had seen one enjoying this diet. Aristotle, however, was less cautious. Ancient and medieval writers knew all about unicorns and salamanders; not one of them thought it necessary to avoid dogmatic statements about them because he had never seen one of them.

Q6. The author portrays mankind as
(a) superhuman (b) by and large ignorant
(c) intelligent (d) ancient
Ans: (b) by and large ignorant

Q7. According to the author, unicorns and salamanders
(a) have existed in the past
(b) are invisible
(c) caused writers to write strange stories.
(d) never really existed
Ans: (d) never really existed

Q8. The author implies that
(a) he has never seen hedgehogs eating beetles
(b) hedgehogs eat only black beetles
(c) they do not eat black beetles
(d) he is writing a book on hedgehogs.
Ans: (a) he has never seen hedgehogs eating beetles

Q9. The author is in favour of drawing conclusions on the basis of
(a) discussion (b) consultation
(c) observation (d) reasoning
Ans: (c) observation
PassageVI
In short, to write a good letter you must approach the job in the lightest and most casual way. You must be personal, not abstract. You must not say, ‘This is too small a thing to put down’. You must say, ‘This is just the sort of small thing we talk about at home. If I tell them this they will see me, as it were they’ll hear my voice, they’ll know what I’m talking about’. That is the purpose of a letter. Carlyle had the trick to perfection. He is writing from Scotsbrig to his brother Alec in Canada and he begins talking about his mother. Good old Mother, he says, ‘she is even now sitting at my back, trying at another table to write you a small word with her own hand; the first time she has tried such a thing for a year past. It is Saturday night, after dark; we are in the east room in a hard, dry evening with a bright fire to our two selves; Jenny and her Barns are ‘scouring up things’ in the other end of the house; and below stairs the winter operations of the farm go on, in a subdued tone; you can conceive the scene How simple it is and yet how perfect. Can not you see Alec reading it in his faroff home and his eyes moistening at the picture of his old mother sitting and writing her last message to him on earth?

Q10. ‘Abstract’ in the passage means
(a) a summary
(b) not paying attention
(c) concrete
(d) not having a physical reality
Ans: (d)not having a physical reality

Q11. The recipient of your letter should ________.
(a) use a lot of imagination.
(b) know what you are talking about
(c) get distracted when reading your letter
(d) find it difficult to understand your letter
Ans: (b)know what you are talking about

Q12. Carlyle’s mother was ________.
(a) a regular letter writer
(b) not confident at letter writing
(c) always eager to write letters to Alec
(d) old and enjoyed writing letters
Ans: (b)not confident at letter writing

Q13. ‘Scouring up things’ means ________.
(a) cleaning pans with a small ball of wire or plastic
(b) to search a place thoroughly in order to find something
(c) to put something in liquid for a time so that it becomes completely wet
(d) writing something quickly and carelessly
Ans: (b) to search a place thoroughly in order to find something

Q14. Subdued tone means _______.
(a) not very loud
(b) unusually quiet and possibly unhappy
(c) not very busy
(d) not very bright
Ans:
(a) not very loud
Directions: In the following questions, read the passage carefully and choose the best answer to each question out of the four alternatives. Radium is a while powder that looks like tablesalt. A pound of it is worth a thousand pounds of gold. Radium is very costly because it is so scarce. A mere pinch of it is worth a small fortune. There are only a few spoonfuls in all the world. But radium is so powerful that too much of it would be dangerous. If a pound or two could be gathered at one spot it would kill people who came near. Through radium, scientists hope to learn how to change one element into another. It would be interesting and profitable to change other metals into gold. But it would be worth more to man to learn how to get all the power from the atoms to do man’s work.

Q15. Radium is considered dangerous because
(a) it would help us to turn other metals into gold.
(b) it would kill millions due to its radioactivity.
(c) it is so scarce.
(d) it would tell us how to get power from radium.
Ans: (b) it would kill millions due to its radioactivity.

Q16. The antonym of ‘scarce’ is
(a) insufficient (b) abundant
(c) wealth (d) rare
Ans: (b) Scarce (Adjective) = insufficient for the demand ; not easy to find or get. Abundant (Adjective) = existing or available in large quantities ; plentiful.

Q17. What is the main subject of discussion in the passage ?
(a) Silver (b) Radium
(c) Salt (d) Gold
Ans: (b) Radium

Q18. The world ‘fortune’ here means
(a) wealth (b) freedom
(c) power (d) inheritance
Ans: (a) Fortune (Noun) = a large amount of money or assets; wealth

Q19. Why is radium very costly ?
(a) It is powerful and dangerous.
(b) It is found in small quantities.
(c) It helps man do his work.
(d) It is very useful.
Ans: (b) It is found in small quantities.

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