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 6.

Charles Darwin’s wide reading included Malthus’s An Essay on the Principle of Population, which calculates that human population would double every 25 years if it were not for death, disease, wars, and famine. Darwin was well prepared to see that this calculation also applied to the "warring of the species” of plants and also to the struggle for existence among wildlife. As species always breed beyond available resources, certain variations among some members of a species would make them better at surviving and at passing the variations on to their offspring. Conversely, unfavorable variations would be lost. The result would be the formation of new species. In September, 1838, he noted this insight. Over the following months he noted the fact that farmers' picking the best breeding stock results in improved animals. He compared this fact with Malthus's ideas and thought this analogy “the most beautiful part of my theory."

1. "Available resources" refers mainly to
A. social support.
B. food.
C. housing.
D. mates.
2. The Old English origin of offspring meant
A. those who spring off (someone).
B. came from a fountain.
C. born in the springtime.
D. paid their dues.
3. Darwin observed the practices of
A. scientists.
B. shopkeepers.
C. farmers.
D. wild animals.
4. Malthus wrote about
A. plants.
B. wild animals.
C. farmers.
D. populations.

Information comes from Wikipedia.

Write down your answers and then see Answer Key below.

Answer Key: 1-B..........2-A..........3-C..........4-D
Corrections? Questions? Comments? E-mail Robert Jackson at