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 September 28.

Seeing a woman over seven feet high - from A Tramp Abroad by Mark Twain (died 1910)

[It was at dinner] that I had under inspection the largest lady I have ever seen in private life. She was over seven feet high and magnificently proportioned. What had first called my attention to her was my stepping on an outlying flange of her foot and hearing, from up toward the ceiling, a deep "Pardon, m'sieu, but you encroach!"

That was when we were coming through the hall, and the place was dim, and I could see her only vaguely. The thing which called my attention to her the second time was, that at a table beyond ours were two very pretty girls, and this great lady came in and sat down between them and me and blotted out my view. She had a handsome face, and she was very finely formed—perfectly formed, I should say. But she made everybody around her look trivial and commonplace. Ladies near her looked like children, and the men about her looked mean. They looked like failures, and they looked as if they felt so, too. She sat with her back to us. I never saw such a back in my life. I would have so liked to see the moon rise over it. The whole congregation waited, under one pretext or another, till she finished her dinner and went out. They wanted to see her at full altitude, and they found it worth tarrying for. She filled one's idea of what an empress ought to be, when she rose up in her unapproachable grandeur and moved superbly out of that place.

1. Mean in this context means
A. low in dignity.
B. unkind.
C. injurious.
D. skinny.
2. A flange is
A. a sole.
B. an ankle.
C. a projecting edge.
D. toes.
3. The Old Norse origin of encroach meant
A. offend.
B. insist.
C. rebel.
D. catch with a hook.
4. Twain compares the lady's back to
A. the moon.
B. the horizon.
C. a mountain.
D. a lake.
The entire book can be downloaded as an HTML zip file from the Internet: A Tramp Abroad.

Write down your answers and then see Answer Key below.

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

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