ISEE Middle Level Verbal : Sentence Completions: Style, Intensity, and Connotation

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for ISEE Middle Level Verbal

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Example Questions

Example Question #203 : Sentence Completions: Context Clues

Choose the word or set of words that best completes the following sentence.

The teacher's _____________ voice was so boring that his entire class fell to sleep as he droned on about the otherwise exciting topic.

Possible Answers:

speaking

exhausting

monotonous

musical

lecturing

Correct answer:

monotonous

Explanation:

This sentence indicates on several occasions that the teachers voice itself is very boring. We have words like "boring" and "droned" that make us think of a voice that is very tedious and unchanging. Whenever someone is "monotonous," he or she has a voice that does not change its pitch very much at all. The word comes from the prefix "mono-" and the stem "-tonous", meaning one-sounded. A monotonous voice can become very boring, very quickly, so it is understandable that the students in question fell asleep—even though the topic itself was interesting!

Example Question #91 : Sentence Completions: Style, Intensity, And Connotation

Choose the word or set of words that best completes the following sentence.

The two men decided to ___________ the carpet that they had removed from the house, using the flames to get rid of the large amounts of fabric.

Possible Answers:

scorch

burn

char

eliminate

incinerate

Correct answer:

incinerate

Explanation:

The two men apparently want to destroy the carpet with a fire. Now, it would be acceptable to choose "burn", but the word "incinerate" is just a little bit better of an option. It means, to destroy with fire. This is a little more accurate and detailed about just what the two men are doing.

Example Question #91 : Sentence Completions: Style, Intensity, And Connotation

Choose the word or set of words that best completes the following sentence.

Many details are not very important when investigating a crime. One or two ____________ facts are often all that are needed to solve a case.

Possible Answers:

crucial

enlightening

determinate

interesting

circumstantial

Correct answer:

crucial

Explanation:

This sentence implies a contrast between two kinds of facts. On the one hand, there are unimportant facts. There are many of these, and they do not help in solving many investigations. On the other hand, there are facts that are important and do help in solving cases. Whenever something is "crucial," it is very important. This is the only option that expresses this general idea about being "very important."

Example Question #211 : Sentence Completions: Context Clues

Choose the word or set of words that best completes the following sentence.

Although the forest fire did not burn down the house, it did _____________ its front porch, leaving black patches in various places.

Possible Answers:

Incinerate

Enflame

Destroy

Heat

Scorch

Correct answer:

Scorch

Explanation:

This sentence indicates that the fire in question did not completely burn the porch. It came to the very edge of the house and only left some minor surface damage on the porch. For this reason, options like "destroy," "incinerate," and "enflame" are all too strong. The word "scorch" is a perfect fit, for it means to burn something's surface. This seems to be what happened to the porch—its surface was burnt, though it was not damaged much more.

Example Question #211 : Sentence Completions: Context Clues

Choose the word or set of words that best completes the following sentence.

As Nigel stared at the majestic waterfall, crashing down into the lake may feet below, he thought the view was utterly __________ and glorious.

Possible Answers:

Sublime

Interesting

Physical

Gluttonous

Aqueous

Correct answer:

Sublime

Explanation:

For this sentence, you are really just looking for synonyms for "majestic" and "glorious." There is no indication that something else is needed, but this point is repeated again and again: the view is quite marvelous. Therefore, the best option is "sublime." Something that is described as being "sublime" is marvelous, majestic, and glorious.

Example Question #92 : Sentence Completions: Style, Intensity, And Connotation

Choose the word or set of words that best completes the following sentence.

With all of the acid rain in the city, the buildings were not merely wearing away. They were completely _____________ from the corrosive fluid.

Possible Answers:

flaking

injured

disintegrating

edified

damaged

Correct answer:

disintegrating

Explanation:

Clearly the acid rain is damaging the buildings in question. Indeed, this sentence indicates that they are being very significantly harmed by the rains. This means that they must be completely "falling apart" or "breaking down" from the acid rain. Therefore, the best word is "disintegrating," which describes the process of falling apart and losing all shape. This seems to be what is happening. In any case, the word "disintegrating" is the only option that has the strength needed, given the structure of the sentence, which signals such an intensification by means of the expression "not merely..."

Example Question #92 : Sentence Completions: Style, Intensity, And Connotation

Choose the word or set of words that best completes the following sentence.

The ____________ weather outside well matched Isidore's depressed feelings as he sat inside brooding over the many sad things that had happened to him that year.

Possible Answers:

noticeable

rainy

dismal

illegal

foggy

Correct answer:

dismal

Explanation:

Foggy or rainy weather might well match Isidore's depressed mood. Even if the weather were rainy or foggy, it would be better to describe it as being "dismal," for this describes something that is not only physically dreary but also something is kind of depressing in character.

Example Question #211 : Sentence Completions: Context Clues

Choose the word or set of words that best completes the following sentence.

Terry didn't merely complain about politics at family meals; he would __________ for hours about the various candidates whom he hated.

Possible Answers:

rant

investigate

talk

chatter

study

Correct answer:

rant

Explanation:

Notice the implied intensification that happens in this sentence. It is said that Terry "didn't merely complain." This implies that he did something more than merely complain. Put simply, he really complained. Therefore, the best option will be "rant." Whenever someone "rants," he or she talks about something in a very wild (almost uncontrolled) manner. Although this might seem a bit strong, it is the only option that we have that expresses this idea of complaining about political matters with energy.

Example Question #212 : Sentence Completions: Context Clues

Choose the word or set of words that best completes the following sentence.

The old man liked to sit on his porch and ___________ the many things he had experienced, reliving each one with careful, slow thought.

Possible Answers:

recall

express

discuss

ponder

summon

Correct answer:

ponder

Explanation:

First of all, note that the old man clearly is sitting on his porch and thinking. Therefore, the options "express" and "discuss" really are not appropriate. Now, be very careful. Notice that he is thinking about these matters carefully and slowly. This means that he is not merely "recalling" them. He is "musing" over them in a deliberate fashion. The best option will be a word that expresses this kind of activity. When we "ponder" something, we do just this—we think over something carefully.

Example Question #213 : Sentence Completions: Context Clues

Choose the word or set of words that best completes the following sentence.

After three days without food, the young man had a(n) ___________ appetite, ready to eat almost anything that was put in front of him.

Possible Answers:

swollen

intensified

voracious

increased

augmented

Correct answer:

voracious

Explanation:

The young man's appetite must be very "big" after the three days without food. Indeed, the sentence does hint at this by saying that he was ready to eat almost anything put in front of him. This kind of increased appetite is really more than a mere manner of being "increased." It was really big. The word "voracious" describes a kind of hunger or desire that is extreme. This matches the strength of the sentence's claim about his hunger and therefore is the best option provided.

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