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 27.

Ralph Waldo Emerson (died 1882) did not become an ardent abolitionist until later in his life, though his journals show he was concerned with slavery beginning in his youth. When he was young, he even dreamed about helping to free slaves.

In 1856, shortly after Charles Sumner, a United States Senator, was defeated in an election because of his staunch abolitionist views, Emerson lamented that he himself was not as committed as Sumner to the abolitionist cause.

After Sumner's defeat, Emerson began to speak out about slavery. "I think we must get rid of slavery, or we must get rid of freedom," he said. Later in his life, Emerson used slavery as an example of a human injustice.

In early 1838, provoked by the murder of an Illinois abolitionist publisher named Elijah Parish Lovejoy, Emerson gave his first public antislavery address. As he said, "It is but the other day that the brave Lovejoy gave his breast to the bullets of a mob, for the rights of free speech and opinion, and died when it was better not to live."

John Quincy Adams said the mob-murder of Lovejoy "sent a shock as of any earthquake throughout this continent."

However, Emerson maintained that reform would be achieved through moral agreement rather than by militant action. By 1844, at a lecture in Concord, he stated more clearly his support for the abolitionist movement. He stated, "We are indebted mainly to this movement, and to the continuers of it, for the popular discussion of every point of practical ethics."

1. An abolitionist was
A. a believer in states' rights.
B. an American reformer in favor of abolishing slavery.
C. a member of an American political party.
D. a religious reformer.
2. Elijah Parish Lovejoy was
A. a murderer.
B. a Southerner.
C. a publisher.
D. a senator.
3. The Greek origin of ethics meant
A. group membership.
B. strong thinking.
C. happiness.
D. moral philosophy.
4. Ardent means
A. strongly enthusiastic.
B. happy.
C. annoyed.
D. loud.

The information comes from Wikipedia.

Write down your answers and then see Answer Key below.

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