141. Directions for Questions 6-10: Read the passage and answer the questions that follow on the basis of the information provided in the passage.
There are some men who seem to be always on the lookout for trouble and, to tell the truth, they are seldom disappointed. Listening to such men one would think that this world is one of the stormiest and most disagreeable places. Yet, after all it is not such a bad place and the difficulty is often in the man who is too thin- skinned. On the other hand, the man who goes out expecting people to be like himself, kind and brotherly, will be surprised at the kindness he meets even in the most unlike quarters. A smile is apt to be met met with a respective smile while the sneer is just as apt to provoke a snarl. Men living in the same neighborhood may live vastly different lives. But it is not the neighborhood which is quarrelsome, but the man within us. And we have it in out power to change our neighborhood into a pleasant one by simply changing our own ways.
The passage is about
146. Directions for Questions 1-5: Read the passage and answer the questions that follow on the basis of the information provided in the passage.
The Mayan Indians lived in Mexico for thousands of years before the Spanish arrived in the 1500s. The Mayan were an intelligent, culturally rich people whose achievements were many. They had farms, beautiful palaces, and cities with many buildings. The Mayan people knew a lot about nature and the world around them. This knowledge helped them to live a better life than most people of that time, because they could use it to make their lives more comfortable and rewarding. Knowledge about tools and farming, for instance, made their work easier and more productive.
In ancient Mexico there were many small clearings in the forest. In each clearing was a village with fields of corn, beans, and other crops around it. To clear the land for farms, the Mayan cut down trees with stone axes. They planted seeds by digging holes in the ground with pointed sticks. A farmer was able to grow crops that produced food for several people. But not every Mayan had to be a farmer. Some were cloth makers, builders, or priests.
The Mayan believed in many gods, including rain gods, sun gods, and corn gods. The people built large temples to honor the Mayan gods. Skillful workers built cities around these temples. It was difficult for them to construct these cities, because they had no horses to carry the heavy stone they used to build with. Workers had to carry all of the building materials themselves. Today, many of these ancient Mayan cities and temples are still standing.
Although the cities that the Mayan built were beautiful, and the people worked hard to build them, very few of the people lived in them. Usually, only the priests lived in the cities.
The other people lived in small villages in the forests. Their houses were much simpler than the elaborate structures in the cities. They lived in small huts with no windows. The walls were made of poles covered with dried mud, and the roof was made of grass or leaves. Most Maya lived a simple life close to nature.
Measuring time was important to the Maya, so they developed a system for measuring it accurately. Farmers needed to know when to plant and harvest their crops. Mayan priests made a system to keep track of time. They wrote numbers as dots (...) and bars (-). A dot was one and a bar was five.
The Mayan priests studied the Sun, Moon, stars, and planets. They made a calendar from what they learned. The year was divided into 18 months of 20 days each with five days left over. The Mayan calendar was far more accurate than the European calendars of the time.
Around the year 800, the Maya left their villages and beautiful cities, never to return. No one knows why this happened. They may have died from an infectious disease. They may have left because the soil could no longer grow crops. Archaeologists are still trying to find the lost secrets of the Maya. They are still one of our greatest mysteries.
Read this sentence from the story.
The Maya were an intelligent, culturally rich people whose achievements were many.
What is a synonym for the word achievements?