Comprehension Exercise

20 Questions | Total Attempts: 120

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Comprehension Quizzes & Trivia

Comprehension Practice


Questions and Answers
  • 1. 
    Mavis’s cooking over the next few weeks reached the culinary heights found only in the best restaurants on the Continent. 1. What does ‘reached culinary heights’ suggest about Mavis’s cooking? [1]  
  • 2. 
    Saturday's bland mixed vegetable soup with several stock cubes for flavour had been replaced with Zuppa di Lenticchie alla Montanara, a thick lentil soup favoured by Chef Bastara of Rome. Macaroni cheese had disappeared from the menu. Instead Fusilli alla Carbonera, redolent with garlic, ham, and pecorino cheese, blended with thick cream and wine and seasoned with black pepper, lemon and parsley came bubbling to the tables. Even mashed potato had gone, replaced by Crocche di Patate, the pureed potato mixed with eggs, nutmeg and mozzarella cheese and fried lightly in olive oil.  2. Why did macaroni cheese disappear from the menu? [1]  
  • 3. 
    Matron had been quick to notice that the changed diet at Pine Hill Place had made a noticeable difference to the atmosphere of the home and the general well-being of the residents. Her old ladies were filling out a bit, there was colour in the withered cheeks and there was a feeling of increased energy about the place. People talked to each other more. The regular queue of people outside the sick bay every morning, with the usual complaints of aches and dizziness shrank to just one or two die-hards a week. She hadn't had to call on the services of Dr van Zyl for a fortnight. This saving, plus the fact that for the first time she could increase the monthly fees without feeling a pang of guilt, off-set the increased cost of the food. Swings and roundabouts, thought Matron, ever the business woman, as she wrote out the cheque for Mr Adams, the grocer. 3. What do you think Pine Hill Place is? [1]
  • 4. 
     Matron had been quick to notice that the changed diet at Pine Hill Place had made a noticeable difference to the atmosphere of the home and the general well-being of the residents. Her old ladies were filling out a bit, there was colour in the withered cheeks and there was a feeling of increased energy about the place. People talked to each other more. The regular queue of people outside the sick bay every morning, with the usual complaints of aches and dizziness shrank to just one or two die-hards a week. She hadn't had to call on the services of Dr van Zyl for a fortnight. This saving, plus the fact that for the first time she could increase the monthly fees without feeling a pang of guilt, off-set the increased cost of the food. Swings and roundabouts, thought Matron, ever the business woman, as she wrote out the cheque for Mr Adams, the grocer. 4. In your own words give two pieces of evidence for the improved well-being of the residents. [2]
  • 5. 
    Matron had been quick to notice that the changed diet at Pine Hill Place had made a noticeable difference to the atmosphere of the home and the general well-being of the residents. Her old ladies were filling out a bit, there was colour in the withered cheeks and there was a feeling of increased energy about the place. People talked to each other more. The regular queue of people outside the sick bay every morning, with the usual complaints of aches and dizziness shrank to just one or two die-hards a week. She hadn't had to call on the services of Dr van Zyl for a fortnight. This saving, plus the fact that for the first time she could increase the monthly fees without feeling a pang of guilt, off-set the increased cost of the food. Swings and roundabouts, thought Matron, ever the business woman, as she wrote out the cheque for Mr Adams, the grocer.  5. How was the increased cost of the food off-set? [2]
  • 6. 
    Matron had been quick to notice that the changed diet at Pine Hill Place had made a noticeable difference to the atmosphere of the home and the general well-being of the residents. Her old ladies were filling out a bit, there was colour in the withered cheeks and there was a feeling of increased energy about the place. People talked to each other more. The regular queue of people outside the sick bay every morning, with the usual complaints of aches and dizziness shrank to just one or two die-hards a week. She hadn't had to call on the services of Dr van Zyl for a fortnight. This saving, plus the fact that for the first time she could increase the monthly fees without feeling a pang of guilt, off-set the increased cost of the food. Swings and roundabouts, thought Matron, ever the business woman, as she wrote out the cheque for Mr Adams, the grocer. 6. What does the phrase ‘ever the business woman’ tell you about the Matron? [1]
  • 7. 
    "Darling, please come to lunch on Sunday," said Mrs Hendricks, "You know we're allowed to invite visitors then. And I can promise you a first class meal." Helen hesitated, recalling her last Sunday date with her mother when she had been served rather dry and stringy roast mutton and watery mashed potatoes. Then remembered she hadn't seen her mother for nearly three months. "Alright, Mum, I'll come but I won't be able to stay long," she said. "Itwill just be a quick visit." Mrs Hendricks was grateful. When Mavis passed her door on her way home, she waylaid her. "Mavis, what's for dinner on Sunday?" she asked. "My daughter's coming. I've told her all about your cooking." "It's just soup, mutton, vegetables and apple pudding, Mrs Hendricks," said Mavis comfortably. "Like always. But I will make it nice." "Your cooking is always nice," assured Mrs Hendricks. "Just look at me, I'm putting on weight because of your cooking!" Indeed, her stick-figure shape was filling out and she looked brighter and happier than before. 7. Why did Helen hesitate when her mother invited her to lunch? [1]
  • 8. 
    "Darling, please come to lunch on Sunday," said Mrs Hendricks, "You know we're allowed to invite visitors then. And I can promise you a first class meal." Helen hesitated, recalling her last Sunday date with her mother when she had been served rather dry and stringy roast mutton and watery mashed potatoes. Then remembered she hadn't seen her mother for nearly three months. "Alright, Mum, I'll come but I won't be able to stay long," she said. "Itwill just be a quick visit." Mrs Hendricks was grateful. When Mavis passed her door on her way home, she waylaid her. "Mavis, what's for dinner on Sunday?" she asked. "My daughter's coming. I've told her all about your cooking." "It's just soup, mutton, vegetables and apple pudding, Mrs Hendricks," said Mavis comfortably. "Like always. But I will make it nice." "Your cooking is always nice," assured Mrs Hendricks. "Just look at me, I'm putting on weight because of your cooking!" Indeed, her stick-figure shape was filling out and she looked brighter and happier than before. 8. Why did Helen finally agree to accept the invitation? [1]
  • 9. 
    "Darling, please come to lunch on Sunday," said Mrs Hendricks, "You know we're allowed to invite visitors then. And I can promise you a first class meal." Helen hesitated, recalling her last Sunday date with her mother when she had been served rather dry and stringy roast mutton and watery mashed potatoes. Then remembered she hadn't seen her mother for nearly three months. "Alright, Mum, I'll come but I won't be able to stay long," she said. "Itwill just be a quick visit." Mrs Hendricks was grateful. When Mavis passed her door on her way home, she waylaid her. "Mavis, what's for dinner on Sunday?" she asked. "My daughter's coming. I've told her all about your cooking." "It's just soup, mutton, vegetables and apple pudding, Mrs Hendricks," said Mavis comfortably. "Like always. But I will make it nice." "Your cooking is always nice," assured Mrs Hendricks. "Just look at me, I'm putting on weight because of your cooking!" Indeed, her stick-figure shape was filling out and she looked brighter and happier than before. 9. Which sentence shows that Mavis was modest about her cooking ability?[1]
  • 10. 
     She was stumped for a pudding. Blood Pudding had sounded promising but one look at the ingredients told her the French people had a strange idea of sweet things, and she'd had to settle for her usual stewed apple and baked custard. But as she beat the eggs for the custard, Mavis tossed in a carton of double cream and sprinkled an inspired mixture of cinnamon and nutmeg over the top before closing the oven door. 10. Explain in your own words why the mixture of cinnamon and nutmeg is described as ‘inspired’ [1]
  • 11. 
    Helen sat at the corner table with her mother, making polite conversation with their companions while they waited to be served. Lunch certainly smelled promising, and they caught tantalising whiffs of garlic and herbs coming from the kitchen. Smells all right, thought Helen. Even so, she wasn't prepared for the rich tomato soup placed in front of her, the crisp croutons of bread coated in olive oil bobbing on top between delicious strands of parmesan cheese. "Bon appetit!" smiled her mother. "I promised you a good lunch, didn't I? Mavis has turned into such a good cook lately, we're really spoiled these days." Her daughter drank her soup in silence, savouring every mouthful. Was that a hint of mint? Basil? It was easily as good as the soup she'd enjoyed the previous week at The French Quarter. Quite wonderful. The meat course was a revelation. Creamy morsels of tender mutton coated in a divine sauce ... definitely lemon there but something else as well ... conversation in the dining room faded to a pleasurable silence as twenty elderly ladies and one visitor concentrated on the sublime decadence of Mavis' mutton stew and mashed pumpkin. 11. What does ‘even so’ suggest about Mavis’ tomato soup? [1]
  • 12. 
    Helen sat at the corner table with her mother, making polite conversation with their companions while they waited to be served. Lunch certainly smelled promising, and they caught tantalising whiffs of garlic and herbs coming from the kitchen. Smells all right, thought Helen. Even so, she wasn't prepared for the rich tomato soup placed in front of her, the crisp croutons of bread coated in olive oil bobbing on top between delicious strands of parmesan cheese. "Bon appetit!" smiled her mother. "I promised you a good lunch, didn't I? Mavis has turned into such a good cook lately, we're really spoiled these days." Her daughter drank her soup in silence, savouring every mouthful. Was that a hint of mint? Basil? It was easily as good as the soup she'd enjoyed the previous week at The French Quarter. Quite wonderful. The meat course was a revelation. Creamy morsels of tender mutton coated in a divine sauce ... definitely lemon there but something else as well ... conversation in the dining room faded to a pleasurable silence as twenty elderly ladies and one visitor concentrated on the sublime decadence of Mavis' mutton stew and mashed pumpkin. 12. What does Helen’s mother mean when she says “we’re really spoiled these days” [1]
  • 13. 
    Helen sat at the corner table with her mother, making polite conversation with their companions while they waited to be served. Lunch certainly smelled promising, and they caught tantalising whiffs of garlic and herbs coming from the kitchen. Smells all right, thought Helen. Even so, she wasn't prepared for the rich tomato soup placed in front of her, the crisp croutons of bread coated in olive oil bobbing on top between delicious strands of parmesan cheese. "Bon appetit!" smiled her mother. "I promised you a good lunch, didn't I? Mavis has turned into such a good cook lately, we're really spoiled these days." Her daughter drank her soup in silence, savouring every mouthful. Was that a hint of mint? Basil? It was easily as good as the soup she'd enjoyed the previous week at The French Quarter. Quite wonderful. The meat course was a revelation. Creamy morsels of tender mutton coated in a divine sauce ... definitely lemon there but something else as well ... conversation in the dining room faded to a pleasurable silence as twenty elderly ladies and one visitor concentrated on the sublime decadence of Mavis' mutton stew and mashed pumpkin. 13. In your own words, give two reasons for Helen’s silence as she drank her soup. [2]
  • 14. 
    Helen sat at the corner table with her mother, making polite conversation with their companions while they waited to be served. Lunch certainly smelled promising, and they caught tantalising whiffs of garlic and herbs coming from the kitchen. Smells all right, thought Helen. Even so, she wasn't prepared for the rich tomato soup placed in front of her, the crisp croutons of bread coated in olive oil bobbing on top between delicious strands of parmesan cheese. "Bon appetit!" smiled her mother. "I promised you a good lunch, didn't I? Mavis has turned into such a good cook lately, we're really spoiled these days." Her daughter drank her soup in silence, savouring every mouthful. Was that a hint of mint? Basil? It was easily as good as the soup she'd enjoyed the previous week at The French Quarter. Quite wonderful. The meat course was a revelation. Creamy morsels of tender mutton coated in a divine sauce ... definitely lemon there but something else as well ... conversation in the dining room faded to a pleasurable silence as twenty elderly ladies and one visitor concentrated on the sublime decadence of Mavis' mutton stew and mashed pumpkin. 14. In what way was the meat course ‘a revelation’? [1]
  • 15. 
       "Mum," said Helen, sipping her cheap after-lunch instant coffee in the lounge. "I want a word with Mavis before I go." Adapted from ‘Top Chef, Negotiable’ by Ginny Swart 15. Why do you think Helen wanted to have a word with Mavis before she left? [1]  
  • 16. 
    From the whole of the passage [5] 16. For each of the following words give one word or a short phrase (of not more than seven words) which has the same meaning that the word or phrase has in the passage.   1. blended
  • 17. 
    2. waylaid
  • 18. 
    3. stumped
  • 19. 
    4. tantalising
  • 20. 
    5. divine