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 #142 : Sentence Completions: Context Clues

Sentence Completions: Select the word or phrase that most correctly completes the sentence.

Many believe Galileo is a kind of __________ for the new world of scientific exploration because of the persecutions he faced for his investigations.

Possible Answers:

exponent

professor

supporter

martyr

zealot

Correct answer:

martyr

Explanation:

The key phrase in this sentence is "because of the persecutions he faced." Many people judge Galileo in light of this. When someone is persecuted and killed because of his or her beliefs, that person is called a "martyr." The word comes from the Greek for "witness." A martyr "witnesses" (bears testimony to) a truth that he or she believes. The sentence does not state that Galileo was killed for his investigations. However, it does qualify the blank by stating that many believe him to be "a kind of"—that is "sort of" a martyr.

Example Question #143 : Sentence Completions: Context Clues

Sentence Completions: Select the word or phrase that most correctly completes the sentence.

After Bryan lost all his money in the recession, he had to move from a mansion in the city to a mere __________ in the country.

Possible Answers:

maxim 

adage

incentive 

hovel

palace

Correct answer:

hovel

Explanation:

The context of the sentence suggests that Bryan moved from his mansion to a much smaller house because he lost all of his money. So, to solve this sentence completion problem, you have to figure out which of these answer choices means a small house. The correct answer is "hovel," as a hovel is the name we give to a small, run-down house or shack. To further help you, "maxim" and "adage" are synonyms of one another and both words mean a common saying, and "incentive" means motivation or reason for doing something.

Example Question #31 : Sentence Completions: Style, Intensity, And Connotation

Sentence Completions: Select the word or phrase that most correctly completes the sentence.

Although we have much data about American reading habits, it is still difficult to judge the overall __________ of the nation, for few studies detail the difficulty and length of the texts read by citizens.

Possible Answers:

reflection

philosophy

activism

literacy

scholarship

Correct answer:

literacy

Explanation:

The best clues for the sentence are "reading habits" and the fact that the sentence is speaking about the general difficulty and length of the texts read by the citizens. The sense is that we are considering the overall reading habits of the citizens, trying to find out their general reading abilities. In its stricter sense, "literacy" is the ability to read (as well as to write). It comes from the Latin for "letter" (as in alphabetic letters), the same root that is found in words like "literal" and "literate." In less formal English, it used to be said that someone "had his letters," meaning that the person was able to read and write. Often, we use the word "literacy" to indicate general reading competence. Note, also, that the word can be used in a broader sense to indicate abilities in any topic—for instance, "computer literacy."

Example Question #32 : Sentence Completions: Style, Intensity, And Connotation

Sentence Completions: Select the word or phrase that most correctly completes the sentence.

It seemed that the old hypochondriac was constantly experiencing some __________—or at least he claimed such to be the case. 

Possible Answers:

malady

misunderstanding

tedium

vexation

annoyance

Correct answer:

malady

Explanation:

If you know the word "hypochondriac," this sentence is very easy. When someone is called this, he or she is being said to be overly worried about being sick, often imagining that he or she is sick when in fact he or she is not. A "malady" is a sickness, so it is fair to say that a hypochondriac believes that he or she is experiencing a malady of some sort or other—even if this is not really the case.

Example Question #161 : Isee Middle Level (Grades 7 8) Verbal Reasoning

Sentence Completions: Select the word or phrase that most correctly completes the sentence.

Ten years after the closing of the criminal case, the police decided to __________ the body of the victim in order to take bone samples because of new evidence that had come to light.

Possible Answers:

probe

exhume

dissect

cremate

incinerate

Correct answer:

exhume

Explanation:

The two most tempting wrong answers likely are "probe" and "dissect," which would perhaps be done by the police in order to get the needed bone samples. However, these descriptions are not normally used to describe these kinds of processes in such cases (though they might be options if you had no other fitting words). Certainly, they do not wish to "incinerate" (burn) or "cremate" (burn to ashes) the body. If anything, they need to recover it from wherever it is. Given the options and the sentence, it is safe to assume that it has been buried for at least ten years. To "exhume" something is to remove it from the ground, often meaning to remove a body from its burial place. The word literally means "out of (ex-) the ground (-hume)." The "-hume" portion is related to "humble" which has the sense of being "lowly" (not arrogant or "haughty"). Metaphorically speaking, being "near the ground" is rather "lowly."

Example Question #151 : Sentence Completions: Context Clues

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

A crowd of hurried shoppers __________ around the mall, running between stores in a frenzy to find good deals.

Possible Answers:

tiptoed

bustled

strolled

challenged

walked

Correct answer:

bustled

Explanation:

We can infer that because the shoppers were "running between stores in a frenzy to find good deals," they must have been hurrying around the mall. So, we need to pick out a verb to describe the shoppers' movements that means something like "hurried." "Strolled" cannot be the correct answer, then, because while strolled describes a kind of movement, "strolled" means "walked in a leisurely way," and the shoppers are not "walking in a leisurely way" because they are "running between stores in a frenzy to find good deals." "Bustled," however, means "moved or went in a busy or hurried way," and because it is the answer choice that best conveys the shoppers' hurry, "bustled" is the correct answer.

Example Question #31 : Sentence Completions: Style, Intensity, And Connotation

Identify the best word to fill in the blank of the sentence

"Where are you going? Why can't you just--" the miserable woman _____. "Don't leave me like this!"

Possible Answers:

exhalted

laughed

ran

faltered

stated

Correct answer:

faltered

Explanation:

In this context, we are looking for a verb that would describe a miserable person's cry for help as it is cut off, which we notice by the dash at the end of the first quotation. Ran does not make sense, and laughed and exhalted are both the wrong tone. While stated is a perfectly reasonable answer grammatically speaking, it does not capture the moment as well as faltered, so that is the proper answer.

Example Question #35 : Sentence Completions: Style, Intensity, And Connotation

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

After three hours of buzzing around the room, the fly did not merely annoy Brandon; it completely __________ him.

Possible Answers:

confused

overwrought

miffed

vexed

enraged

Correct answer:

enraged

Explanation:

The sentence indicates an increase in intensity between being annoyed and the word that we need. Several of the options are relative synonyms for annoy ("vexed," "miffed"). The other options do not adequately express an intensification of anger. However, the word "enraged," though it may seem a bit strong, is indeed the best option.

Example Question #32 : Sentence Completions: Style, Intensity, And Connotation

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

As the weather cooled, the cold November temperatures gave way to quite ___________ temperatures by January.

Possible Answers:

frigid

hardy

surprising

pesky

balmy

Correct answer:

frigid

Explanation:

The sentence is setting up a contrast of intensification. The cooling of temperatures is going from being "cold" to being colder. This is the key thing that you need to capture. The word "frigid", strictly speaking, means "very cold." None of the other options are appropriate for conveying intensification. The only other weather-related word, "balmy," means pleasantly warm. This definitely does not fit!  

Example Question #171 : Isee Middle Level (Grades 7 8) Verbal Reasoning

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

In crowds and at public functions, Gilbert was quite personable, but in the __________ of his own home, he was quite withdrawn and quiet.

Possible Answers:

privacy

abstraction

precincts

fortress

distance

Correct answer:

privacy

Explanation:

This sentence contrasts how Gilbert acted in public and in private. Therefore, the best option for the sentence would be "privacy," for this describes his home as being the private space in which he was quiet—as opposed to the public space that is mentioned in the first part. The word "privacy" helps to establish the contrast quite clearly.

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