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 June 4.

A visit to the zoo in Marseilles, France, selected from "The Innocents Abroad" by Mark Twain (died 1910)

In the great Zoological Gardens we found specimens of all the animals the world produces, I think, including a camel, a monkey ornamented with tufts of brilliant blue and carmine hair - a very gorgeous monkey he was, a hippopotamus from the Nile, and a sort of tall, long-legged bird with a beak like a powder horn and close-fitting wings like the tails of a dress coat. This fellow stood up with his eyes shut and his shoulders stooped forward a little and looked as if he had his hands under his coat tails. Such tranquil stupidity, such supernatural gravity, such self-righteousness, and such ineffable self-complacency as were in the countenance and attitude of that gray-bodied, dark-winged, bald-headed, and preposterously uncomely bird! He was so ungainly, so pimply about the head, so scaly about the legs, yet so serene, so unspeakably satisfied! He was the most comical-looking creature that can be imagined.

We stirred him up occasionally, but he only unclosed an eye and slowly closed it again, abating no jot of his stately piety of demeanor or his tremendous seriousness. He only seemed to say, "Defile not Heaven's anointed with unsanctified hands." We did not know his name, and so we called him "The Pilgrim."

(Use this link to see images of powder horns: powder horns.)

1. A powder horn is shaped like a
A. box.
B. bent cone.
C. cup.
D. jar.
2. Piety is
A. studiousness.
B. rudeness.
C. devoutness.
D. ancestor worship.
3. Heaven's anointed are
A. priests.
B. angels.
C. learned people.
D. those officially devoted to God.
4. Ineffable means
A. incapable of being described in words.
B. confusing.
C. stupid.
D. hard to understand.
The entire book can be downloaded as an html zip file from Project Gutenberg: The Innocents Abroad.

Write down your answers and then see Answer Key below.

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

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