1. D. Mercurial means impulsive or flighty, so tranquil is the best antonym.
2. D. The prologue is the introductory part of a work of a text, and the epilogue is the concluding part.
3. A. Spartan means ascetic or dismissive of physical comfort; a decadent person is sensuous and revels in creature comforts.
4. C. An acrid substance has a bitter or pungent taste; obviously, sweet is the appropriate antonym.
5. B. Euphony is the quality of being harmonious or pleasing to the ear; a cacophony is a jangle of discordant sound.
6. E. The paired terms are virtual antonyms: something that is ineffable cannot be made explicit (put into words); similarly, something that is circumscribed (clearly defined) is more than implicit (unspoken).
7. A. The paired terms describe two different ways of eating: one which is rapid and sloppy (devour), and one which is slower and more careful (nibble). The correct answer expresses a similar relationship between two modes of drinking.
8. E. A dictionary lists the definition of a word, while a thesaurus lists the synonyms.
9. C. Misanthropy is generalized hatred for mankind, an attitude unlikely to be held by a saint. Likewise, a despot (harsh dictator) is unlikely to demonstrate benevolence.
10. A. The first paired terms are negative adjectives related to two different senses: noisome means stinky, while hideous denotes an ugly appearance. Similarly, the correct answer contains positive adjectives related to the senses of smell and sight.
11. E. A sanguine temperament is even, neither too euphoric nor too despondent.
12. A. Caustic humor is overly personal and biting.
13. C. A saturnine individual is gloomy and sluggish.
14. A. It would be no surprise to the group that a verbose (wordy) speaker would deliver a ponderous (long and dull) speech.
15. A. Laudable means worthy of praise, while floundering indicates a lack of success.
16. D. The first paragraph indicates that the Swainson's hawk travels between North and South America, while the Galapagos hawk remains on the Galapagos Islands throughout the year.
17. B. The word endemic means "characteristic of" or "native to."
18. C. It seems unlikely that people would deliberately cultivate rats.
19. E. For the purpose of protecting endangered species, it is most important to gauge the ability of the species to produce offspring.
20. D. This essay provides an objective description of the basic characteristics of the Galapagos hawk.
Last Updated: 03/01/2012
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