Something Important About Paragraph Test

5 Questions | Total Attempts: 121

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Paragraph Quizzes & Trivia

Read the following passages then answer the questions.


Questions and Answers
  • 1. 
    Americans have always been interested in their Presidents' wives. Many First Ladies have been remembered because of the ways they have influenced their husbands. Other First Ladies have made the history books on their own. At least two First Ladies, Bess Truman and Lady Bird Johnson, made it their business to send signals during their husbands' speeches. When Lady Bird Johnson thought her husband was talking too long, she wrote a note and sent it up to the platform. It read, “It's time to stop!” And he did. Once Bess Truman didn't like what her husband was saying on television, so she phoned him and said,” If you can't talk more politely than that in public, you come right home.” Abigail Fillmore and Eliza Johnson actually taught their husbands, Millard Fillmore and Andrew Johnson, the thirteenth and seventeenth Presidents. A schoolteacher, Abigail eventually married her pupil, Millard. When Eliza Johnson married Andrew, he could not read or write, so she taught him herself. It was First Lady Helen Taft's idea to plant the famous cherry trees in Washington, D. C. Each spring these blossoming trees attract thousands of visitors to the nation's capital. Mrs. Taft also influenced the male members of her family and the White House staff in a strange way: she convinced them to shave off their beards! Shortly after President Wilson suffered a stroke, Edith Wilson unofficially took over most of the duties of the Presidency until the end of her husband's term. Earlier, during World War I, Mrs. Wilson had had sheep brought onto the White House lawn to eat the grass. The sheep not only kept the lawn mowed but provided wool for an auction sponsored by the First Lady. Almost $100,000 was raised for the Red Cross. Dolly Madison saw to it that a magnificent painting of George Washington was not destroyed during the War of 1812. As the British marched toward Washington, D. C., she remained behind to rescue the painting, even after the guards had left. The painting is the only object from the original White House that was not burned. One of the most famous First Ladies was Eleanor Roosevelt, the wife of President Franklin D. Roosevelt. She was active in political and social causes throughout her husband's tenure in office. After his death, she became famous for her humanitarian work in the United Nations. She made life better for thousands of needy people around the world. What is the main idea of this passage?
    • A. 

      The Humanitarian work of the First Ladies is critical in American government.

    • B. 

      Dolly Madison was the most influential president's wife.

    • C. 

      Eleanor Roosevelt transformed the First Lady image.

    • D. 

      The First Ladies are important in American culture.

    • E. 

      The First Ladies are key supporters of the Presidents.

  • 2. 
    Of the many kinds of vegetables grown all over the world, which remains the favorite of young and old alike? Why, the potato, of course. Perhaps you know them as “taters,” “spuds,” or “Kennebees,” or as “chips,” “Idahoes,” or even “shoestrings.” No matter, a potato by any other name is still a potato- the world's most widely grown vegetable. As a matter of fact, if you are an average potato eater, you will put away at least a hundred pounds of them each year. That's only a tiny portion of the amount grown every year, however. Worldwide, the annual potato harvest is over six billion bags- each bag containing a hundred pounds of spuds, some of them as large as four pounds each. Here in the United States, farmers fill about four hundred million bags a year. That may seem like a lot of “taters,” but it leaves us a distant third among world potato growers. Polish farmers dig up just over 800 million bags a year, while the Russians lead the world with nearly 1.5 billion bags. The first potatoes were grown by the Incas of South America, more than four hundred years ago. Their descendants in Ecuador and Chile continue to grow the vegetable as high as fourteen thousand feet up in the Andes Mountains. ( That's higher than any other food will grow.) Early Spanish and English explorers shipped potatoes to Europe, and they found their way to North America in the early 1600s. People eat potatoes in many ways-baked, mashed, and roasted, to name just three. However, in the United States most potatoes are devoured in the form of French fries. One fast-food chain alone sells more than $1 billion worth of fries each year. No wonder, then, that the company pays particular attention to the way its fries are prepared. Before any fry makes it to the people who eat at these popular restaurants, it must pass many separate tests. Fail any one and the spud is rejected. To start with, only russet Burbank potatoes are used. These Idaho potatoes have less water content than other kinds, which can have as much as eighty percent water. Once cut into “shoestrings” shapes, the potatoes are partly fried in a secret blend of oils, sprayed with liquid sugar to brown them, steam dried at high heat, then flash frozen for shipment to individual restaurants. Before shipping, though, every shoestring is measured. Forty percent of a batch must be between two and three inches long. Another forty percent has to be over three inches. What about the twenty percent that are left in the batch? Well, a few short fries in a bag are okay, it seems. So, now that you realize the enormous size and value of the potato crop, you can understand why most people agree that this part of the food industry is no “small potatoes.” What is the main idea of this passage?
    • A. 

      Potatoes from Ireland started the Potato Revolution.

    • B. 

      The average American eats 50 lbs of potatoes a year.

    • C. 

      French fries are made from potatoes.

    • D. 

      Potatoes are a key vegetable in America.

    • E. 

      The various terms for potatoes have a long history.

  • 3. 
    High in the Andes Mountains in Peru stands the ancient city of Machu Picchu. No one knows why this great city was built, nor is it likely that we will ever know. Nevertheless, the deserted city of Machu Picchu is important for what it reveals about the ancient Inca people of South America. The Incas once ruled a great empire that covered a large part of the South American continent. The empire was more than five hundred years old when the first Spanish explorers, looking for gold, went to that continent in the sixteenth century. The Incas were an advanced people. They were skillful engineers who paved their roads and built sturdy bridges. They plowed the land in such a way that rains would not wash away valuable soil. They dug ditches to carry water into dry areas for farming. Even though they did not know about the wheel, the Incas were able to move huge stone blocks- some as heavy as ten tons- up the sides of mountains to build walls. The blocks were fitted so tightly, without cement of any kind, that it would be impossible to slip a knife blade between them! The walls have stood firm through great storms and earthquakes that have destroyed many modern buildings. The Incas were great artists, too. Today, Incan dishes and other kinds of pottery are prized for their wonderful designs. Since both gold and silver were in great supply, the Incas created splendid objects from these precious metals. While it is true that the Incas had no written language, they kept their accounts by using a system of knotted strings of various lengths and colors. The sizes of the knots and the distances between them represented numbers. At its height, the Incan empire included as many as thirty million people. The emperor ruled them with an iron hand. He told his subjects where to live, what to plant, how long they should work-even whom they could marry. Since he owned everything, the emperor gave what he wished when he wished- and in the amount he wished -to his people. In 1533 Spanish explorers led by Francisco Pizarro murdered the emperor of the Incas. Earlier, the heir to the Incan empire had also been killed. The Incas, who had always been entirely dependent on their emperor, now had no recognized leader. The Spaniards easily conquered the empire and plundered its riches. Have the Incas disappeared from South America? Not at all. In Peru alone, once the center of that great empire, eighty percent of the twenty million people are descendants of the Inca people. Evidence of the Incan empire can be found in many other places in South America as well. You can even visit Machu Picchu. The remains of this ancient city still stand high in the mountains of Peru, an awesome tribute to this once powerful empire. What is the main idea of this passage?
    • A. 

      The Incas once inhabited the ancient city of Machu Picchu.

    • B. 

      Peru was the primary country of the Incas.

    • C. 

      The Incan empire can be found in ancient cities and was plundered by the Spanish.

    • D. 

      Spanish conquerors destroyed the Incan empire in the thirteenth century.

    • E. 

      Machu Picchu was the capital of the Incan empire.

  • 4. 
    In 1892 the Sierra Club was formed. In 1908 an area of coastal redwood trees north of San Francisco was established as Muir Woods National Monument. In the Sierra Nevada mountains, a walking trail from Yosemite Valley to Mount Whitney was dedicated in 1938. It is called John Muir Trail. John Muir was born in 1838 in Scotland. His family name means “moor,” which is a meadow full of flowers and animals. John loved nature from the time he was small. He also liked to climb rocky cliffs and walls. When John was eleven, his family moved to the United States and settled in Wisconsin. John was good with tools and soon became an inventor. He first invented a model of a sawmill. Later he invented an alarm clock that would cause the sleeping person to be tipped out of bed when the timer sounded. Muir left home at an early age. He took a thousand-mile walk south to the Gulf of Mexico in 1867and 1868. Then he sailed for San Francisco. The city was too noisy and crowded for Muir, so he headed inland for the Sierra Nevadas. When Muir discovered the Yosemite Valley in the Sierra Nevadas, it was as if he had come home. He loved the mountains, the wildlife, and the trees. He climbed the mountains and even climbed trees during thunderstorms in order to get closer to the wind. He put forth the theory in the late 1860's that the Yosemite Valley had been formed through the action of glaciers. People ridiculed him. Not until 1930 was Muir's theory proven correct. Muir began to write articles about the Yosemite Valley to tell readers about its beauty. His writing also warned people that Yosemite was in danger from timber mining and sheep ranching interests. In 1901 Theodore Roosevelt became president of the United States. He was interested in conservation. Muir took the president through Yosemite, and Roosevelt helped get legislation passed to create Yosemite National Park in 1906. Although Muir won many conservation battles, he lost a major one. He fought to save the Hetch Valley, which people wanted to dam in order to provide water for San Francisco. In the late 1913 a bill was signed to dam the valley. Muir died in 1914. Some people say losing the fight to protect the valley killed Muir. When did Muir invent a unique form of alarm clock?
    • A. 

      While the family still lived in Scotland

    • B. 

      After he sailed to San Francisco

    • C. 

      After he traveled in Yosemite

    • D. 

      While the Muir family lived in Wisconsin

    • E. 

      After he took the long walk

  • 5. 
    The village of Vestmannaeyjar, in the far northern country of Iceland, is as bright and clean and up-to-date as any American or Canadian suburb. It is located on the island of Heimaey, just off the mainland. One January night in 1973, however, householders were shocked from their sleep. In some backyards red-hot liquid was spurting from the ground. Flaming “skyrockets” shot up and over the houses. The island's volcano, Helgafell, silent for seven thousand years, was violently erupting! Luckily, the island's fishing fleet was in port, and within twenty-four hours almost everyone was ferried to the mainland. But then the agony of the island began in earnest. As in a nightmare, fountains of burning lava spurted three hundred feet high. Black, baseball-size cinders rained down. An evil-smelling, eye-burning, throat-searing cloud of smoke and gas erupted into the air, and a river of lava flowed down the mountain. The constant shriek of escaping steam was punctuated by ear-splitting explosions. As time went on, the once pleasant village of Vestmannaeyjar took on a weird aspect. Its street lamps still burning against the long Arctic night, the town lay under a thick blanket of cinders. All that could be seen above the ten-foot black drifts were the tips of street signs. Some houses had collapsed under the weight of cinders; others had burst into flames as the heat ignited their oil storage tanks. Lighting the whole lurid scene, fire continued to shoot from the mouth of the looming volcano. The eruption continued for six months. Scientists and reporters arrived from around the world to observe the awesome natural event. But the town did not die that easily. In July, when the eruption ceased, the people of Heimaey Island returned to assess the chances of rebuilding their homes and lives. They found tons of ash covering the ground. The Icelanders are a tough people, however, accustomed to the strange and violent nature of their Arctic land. They dug out their homes. They even used the cinders to build new roads and airport runways. Now the new homes of Heimaey are warmed from water pipes heated by molten lava. The author's purpose for writing the following passage is
    • A. 

      To entertain the reader with a story about and imaginary island.

    • B. 

      To persuade the reader to visist the island Vestmannaeyjar.

    • C. 

      To inform the reader the volcanic eruption on the island of Vestmannaeyjar in 1973.