Reading Comprehension Quiz

[A new interlinear poem will be available each Monday: Weekly Interlinear Poem .]

Use the dictionary, the acronym finder, and the word origins dictionary (links above) as needed. A new quiz is available each Monday through Thursday. This is the quiz for August 20.

Horseback riding in Hawaii - from Roughing It by Mark Twain (died 1910)

We rode horseback all around the island of Hawaii . . . We were more than a week making the trip, because our horses would not go by a house or a hut without stopping - whip and spur could not alter their minds about it - and so we finally found that it economized time to let them have their way. Upon inquiry the mystery was explained: the natives are such thorough-going gossips that they never pass a house without stopping to swap news, and consequently their horses learn to regard that sort of thing as an essential part of the whole duty of man . . . [I was reminded that] at a former time of my life I had once taken an aristocratic young lady out driving behind a horse that had just retired from a long and honorable career as the moving impulse of a milk wagon . . . I remembered how helpless I was that day (while my hot blushes baked themselves into a permanent blood-pudding in my face) while the horse ambled from one side of the street to the other and waited complacently before every third house.

1. The moving impulse of a milk wagon was
A. gossips.
B. a horse.
C. natives.
D. whip and spur.
2. When the horse stopped at every third house Twain was
A. angry.
B. questioning.
C. embarrassed.
D. amused.
3. To be complacent is to be
A. pleased with oneself.
B. impatient.
C. annoying.
D. insulting.
4. The horses in Hawaii waited for
A. the whip and the spur.
B. the rider to get some food.
C. the villagers to gather.
D. the rider to gossip.
5. Twain's humor comes from
A. word play.
B. sarcasm.
C. exaggeration.
D. knowledge about horses.
The complete text of Roughing It is available from Project Gutenberg as a downloadable file: Roughing It.

Write down your answers and then see Answer Key below.

Answer Key: 1-B..........2-C..........3-A..........4-D..........5-C

Corrections? Questions? Comments? E-mail Robert Jackson at