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 #184 : Sentence Completions

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

The article the students were asked to read was so __________ in tone, they felt offended.

Possible Answers:

serious

pleasant

abrasive

cheerful

humorous

Correct answer:

abrasive

Explanation:

If something you read or listen to offends you, what does it do or sound like? While a "humorous" or "serious" piece of writing may offend some people, more people are likely to be offended by "abrasiveness" (which is, by definition, not pleasant) than by humor or seriousness. An "abrasive" tone means overly aggressive in how it addresses its audience, which the article described in the sentence clearly is, since all students felt offended upon reading it. The sentence is looking for a negative word as opposed to a positive one like "cheerful" or "pleasant."

Example Question #61 : Sentence Completions: Style, Intensity, And Connotation

Select the word or pair that best completes the sentence.

Though some people called him generous, the banker was actually rather frugal and  __________, given his desire to keep everything to himself.

Possible Answers:

avaricious

picky

parsimonious

thrifty 

wasteful

Correct answer:

avaricious

Explanation:

The words "though" and "rather" should signal you to search for a word whose meaning is opposite of generous, or giving. Generous is a good quality, which suggests a person's good character as he or she desires to help others. "Thrifty" and "parsimonious" fit into a category for words that describe people who use their money or resources carefully, just like frugal. The sentence, however, wants you to find a word that is opposite to those three (thrifty, parsimonious, frugal). One may be thrifty, for example, but also generous to others. Eliminate therefore thrifty and parsimonious. "Generous" and "wasteful" are not opposed either-- not wishing to give your resources to others is not proof of being wasteful of your resources; it just means you keep them to yourself. A person who is "avaricious" keeps her or his resources entirely to herself or himself, with a degree of intensity that seems shallow and insensitive. Since picky is not opposed to generous, the best answer is therefore avaricious. 

Example Question #63 : Sentence Completions: Style, Intensity, And Connotation

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

The athlete lay stricken on the turf, overcome with __________ leg pain.

Possible Answers:

excruciating 

slight 

anonymous 

shoddy 

incidental 

Correct answer:

excruciating 

Explanation:

The fact that the athlete lay "stricken" (deeply affected and pained by) and was "overcome" (affected very strongly by) provide important clues to the level of intensity of the pain felt by the athlete. The answer therefore is that he felt "excruciating" leg pain. "Excruciating" means incredibly painful, unbearable. To provide further help, "shoddy" means poorly built; "anonymous" means unknown; "incidental" and "slight" both mean minor

Example Question #186 : Sentence Completions

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

The singer was mobbed by his __________ of fans when he left the hotel. 

Possible Answers:

legion

panache

pantheon

viewpoint

repository

Correct answer:

legion

Explanation:

The use of the word "mobbed" provides a clue as to the level of intensity of the correct answer. "Mobbed" means surrounded by, inundated with. So, the correct answer must express the large number of fans that are surrounding the subject. The answer is therefore "legion," which means numerous, a multitude of. To provide further help, a "pantheon" is a group of Gods within a religion; "panache" means style; a "repository" is a place where things are stored; a "viewpoint" is a perspective, a point of view

Example Question #61 : Sentence Completions: Style, Intensity, And Connotation

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

I have been feeling very __________ this past week; probably because I am still recovering from the cold I caught last weekend.

Possible Answers:

humane

lonesome

sacred

arbitrary

feeble

Correct answer:

feeble

Explanation:

The speaker of this sentence is still recovering from a cold so it makes sense that they would be feeling "weak" and "frail." So, to solve this problem you need to determine which of these answer choices means weak from illness, or made frail. The correct answer is "feeble." To provide further help, "sacred" means holy; "lonesome" means lonely; "arbitrary" means random, a decision made without any clear reason; "humane" means kind and compassionate

Example Question #188 : Sentence Completions

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

She went with her parents to choose a dog and wound up choosing the __________ of the litter because he was so small and cute. 

Possible Answers:

runt

donor

mirage

grandest

occupant

Correct answer:

runt

Explanation:

The dog that the girl chooses is especially small, based on this information the correct answer is "runt." The "runt" is the smallest or weakest of a group of animals. To provide further help, "grandest" means largest, most magnificent; "occupant" means resident, inhabitant, person who lives there; a "mirage" is an optical illusion, something seen that is not really there; a "donor" is a giver, someone who gives to others

Example Question #191 : Sentence Completions

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

The isolated town descended into a state of chaos after the police force was disbanded as people committed crimes with __________

Possible Answers:

impunity

reverence

enthusiasm

repentance

neglect

Correct answer:

impunity

Explanation:

In a circumstance where the police force had been disbanded people would likely feel they could commit crimes without fear of punishment. The correct answer is therefore "impunity." "Impunity" means immunity from retribution, freedom from punishment and consequence. To provide further help, "repentance" means remorse, shame and guilt; "reverence" means deep respect; "neglect" means the state of being uncared for or of not caring for; "enthusiasm" means excitement. Although "enthusiasm" could be a viable answer, it is not as strong as "impunity." 

Example Question #62 : Sentence Completions: Style, Intensity, And Connotation

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

I like to __________ my food, so I take my time when eating.

Possible Answers:

nag

wean

incriminate

abet

savor

Correct answer:

savor

Explanation:

The speaker of this sentence likes to take their time when eating. Something you take the time to casually enjoy is something you "savor." To provide further help, "abet" means aid, assist; "wean" means to become no longer addicted to; "nag" means bother, irritate by telling someone what to do; "incriminate" means provide evidence to suggest someone is guilty

Example Question #62 : Sentence Completions: Style, Intensity, And Connotation

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

She was often seasick throughout their journey and was jubilant to finally __________ when they reached their destination.

Possible Answers:

subsist

dismember

disembark

lure

divulge

Correct answer:

disembark

Explanation:

If the woman were often sick onboard the ship she would probably be jubilant (very happy) to "leave" the ship. So, to solve this problem you have to determine which of these answers means to get off a boat. The correct answer is therefore "disembark." To provide further help, "divulge" means reveal, as in reveal a secret; "dismember" means pull apart, break; "lure" means attract, usually attract through nefarious means; "subsist" means survive on.

Example Question #194 : Sentence Completions

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

I got into a bit of a(n) __________ with this man who insulted my friend last night.

Possible Answers:

conspiracy 

altercation 

accord 

harmony 

mediation 

Correct answer:

altercation 

Explanation:

If someone insults your friend it makes sense that you would get into an argument or disagreement with him or her. The correct answer then is "altercation." An "altercation" can be a physical confrontation or a verbal argument. To provide further help, "accord" and "harmony" are synonyms, both words mean agreement. Additionally, a "conspiracy" is an agreement between two or more parties to do work together to secretively further their goals; "mediation" is an intervention by a third party to try and resolve an argument between two other parties.

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