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    Reading Comprehension
  I: Introduction  
  II: The Challenge  
  III: The Five Steps  
  IV: Question Types  
  V: Tips  
  VI: Sample Essays  
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VI. Reading Comprehension Sample Questions- Hard Essay 6  
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Sample Essays


7 questions/ 11 minutes

The lord of this land is variously and indistinctly named. One legend calls him the White Serpent of the Clouds, or the White Cloud Twin, Iztac Mixcoatl. Whoever he was, we can hardly mistake the mountain upon which he dwelt. Colhuacan means the bent or curved mountain. It is none other than the Hill of Heaven, curving down on all sides to the horizon; upon it in all times have dwelt the gods, excluding all mortals, and from it they have come to aid the men they favor. Absolutely the same name was applied by the Choctaws to the mythical hill from which they say their ancestors first emerged into the light of day. They call it Nane Waiyah, the Bent or Curved Hill. Such identity of metaphorical expression leaves little room for discussion. If it did, the other myths that surround this mystic mountain would seem to clear up doubt. It has this same magical virtue, that whoever ascends it, however old he is, grows young again, in proportion as he mounts, and is thus restored to pristine vigor. The happy dwellers around it have, however, no need of its youth-restoring power; for in that land no one grows old, nor knows the outrage of years.

1. According to the author, gods perform which of the following actions from their perch on the Hill of Heaven?

(A) helping mortals of whom they are particularly fond
(B) naming the hills, the mountains, and the local gods
(C) granting eternal youth to those who ascend the mountain
(D) knowing the outrage of years
(E) preserving the curve of the mountain

2. The passage is primarily concerned with:

(A) summarizing the most popular myths of the Choctaw people.
(B) describing the different identities of the White Cloud Twin, Iztac Mixcoatl.
(C) presenting an objective account of the myths surrounding Curved Hill.
(D) comparing and contrasting three mythical mountains.
(E) drawing similarities between different mythical accounts.

3. The author of this passage would be most likely to agree with which of the following statements about mythology?

(A) Myths cannot be used to determine the truth about contested historical facts.
(B) All mythologies include accounts of the same mystical mountain.
(C) The name given to a mythical entity can inform us about its origins and identity.
(D) Most myths are based in a universal human need to connect with the divine.
(E) It is impossible to determine with certainty whether two myths are related .

4. It can be inferred from the passage that when the author uses the phrase “the outrage of years,” he is most likely referring to:

(A) immortality.
(B) old age.
(C) time as it appears to immortals.
(D) the perspective gained with the passing of time.
(E) the anger experienced by those who fail to climb the Hill of Heaven.

5. It can be inferred from the passage that the White Serpent of the Clouds:

(A) was one of the first rulers of the Choctaw people.
(B) is an immortal being who lives on the Hill of Heaven.
(C) is the twin brother of Iztac Mixcoatl.
(D) was one of few mortals to have gained eternal youth.
(E) inspired the descent of the Choctaws from Nane Waiyah.

6. According to the passage, all of the following statements about the Hill of Heaven are true EXCEPT:

(A) It and Colhuacan are one and the same mountain.
(B) It and Nane Waiyah are one and the same mountain.
(C) It curves down on all sides to the horizon.
(D) It is inhabited by both gods and mortals.
(E) Those who ascend it grow young again.

7. It can be inferred from the passage that the “other myths” are referenced by the author in order to solidify the notion that:

(A) Nane Waiyah is likely the same hill on which Iztac Mixcoatl dwelt.
(B) even today, anyone who ascends Nane Waiyah will grow young again.
(C) the White Serpent of the Clouds and the White Cloud Twin are the same lord.
(D) Colhuacan is a metaphor for what the Choctaws call the “Hill of Heaven.”
(E) the gods will come to the aid of any men they happen to favor.



Hard Essay 5

Hard Essay 7