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 January 15.

Walt Whitman (died 1892) has been claimed as America's first "poet of democracy," a title meant to reflect his ability to write in a singularly American character. A British friend of Walt Whitman, Mary Costelloe, wrote, "You cannot really understand America without Walt Whitman, without Leaves of Grass... He has expressed that civilization 'up to date,' as he would say, and no student of the philosophy of history can do without him." Modernist poet Ezra Pound called Whitman "America's poet... He is America." Andrew Carnegie called him "the great poet of America so far."

Whitman considered himself to be a messiah-like figure in poetry. Others agreed; one of his admirers, William Sloane Kennedy, speculated that "people will be celebrating the birth of Walt Whitman as they are now the birth of Christ."

The literary critic Harold Bloom wrote, as the introduction for the 150th anniversary of Leaves of Grass:
If you are American, then Walt Whitman is your imaginative father and mother, even if, like myself, you have never composed a line of verse. You can nominate a fair number of literary works as candidates for the secular scripture of the United States. They might include Melville's Moby-Dick, Twain's Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, and Emerson's two series of Essays and The Conduct of Life. None of those, not even Emerson's, is as central as the first edition of Leaves of Grass.
1. The Greek origin of democracy meant
A. government departments.
B. the people's wishes.
C. rule of the common people.
D. government of aristocrats.
2. Civilization means
A. knowledgeable people.
B. a particular society at a particular time and place.
C. peaceful society.
D. modern people.
3. Secular scripture means
A. revered writings that are not religious.
B. crude writings.
C. famous writings.
D. poetic writings.
4. A messiah is
A. a military leader.
B. a skilled politician.
C. the loyal opposition.
D. a leader who frees his people.

The information comes from Wikipedia.

Write down your answers and then see Answer Key below.

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