TOEFL iTP | Reading – Intermediate | John James Audubon

Welcome back to another TOEFL iTP reading! Big shout out to all my Indonesians who have been viewing my blog. You’ve catapulted my all-time play mark (in one day) just a couple days ago, so thank you! And for all of you who are interested in the title, this specific reading is from Longman Complete Test One. Longman’s grammar, listening and reading is far easier than the actual tests, so I wanted to emphasize what type of reading this is versus the extremely difficult reads from PBT. That will be coming soon, but also remember to go on my TOEFL iTP Patreon Badge for all exclusive and endless amounts of material!

John James Audubon, nineteenth-century artist and naturalist, is known as one of the foremost authorities on Northern American birds. Born in Les Cayes, Haiti, in 1785, Audubon was raised in France and studied art under French artist Jacques-Louis David. After settling on his father’s Pennsylvania estate at the age of eighteen, he first began to study and paint birds.

In his young adulthood, Audubon undertook numerous enterprises, generally without a tremendous amount of success; at various times during his life he was involved in a mercantile business, a lumber and grist mill, a taxidermy business, and a school. His general mode of operating a business was to leave it either unattended or in the hands of a partner and take off on excursions through the wilds to paint the natural life that he saw. His business career came to an end in 1819 when he was jailed for debt and forced to file for bankruptcy.

It was at that time that Audubon began to seriously pursue the dream of publishing a collection of his paintings of birds. For the next six years he painted birds in their natural habitats while his wife worked as a teacher to support the family. His Birds of America, which included engravings of 435 of his colorful and lifelike watercolors, was published in parts during the period from 1826 to 1838 in England. After the success of the English editions, American editions of his work were published in 1839, and his fame and fortune were ensured.

Longman
  1. This passage is mainly about
  • North American birds
  • Audubon’s route to success as a painter of birds
  • the works that Audubon published
  • Audubon’s preference for travel in natural habitats

2. The word “foremost” in line 1 is closest in meaning to

  • prior
  • leading
  • first
  • largest

3. In the second paragraph, the author mainly discussess

  • how Audubon developed his painting style
  • Audubon’s involvement in a mercantile business
  • where Audubon went on his excursions
  • Audubon’s unsuccessful business practices

4. The word “mode” in line 7 could best be replaced by

  • method
  • vogue
  • average
  • trend

5. Audubon decided not to continue to pursue business when

  • he was injured in an accident at a grist mill
  • he decided to study art in France
  • he was put in prison because he owed money
  • he made enough money from his paintings

6. The word “pursue” in line 11 is closest in meaning to

  • imagine
  • share
  • follow
  • deny

7. According to the passage, Audubon’s paintings

  • were realistic portrayals
  • used only black, white, and gray
  • were done in oils
  • depicted birds in cages

8. The word “support” in line 13 could best be replaced by

  • tolerate
  • provide for
  • side with
  • fight for

9. It can be inferred from the passage that after 1839 Audubon

  • unsuccessfully tried to develop new businesses
  • continued to be supported by his wife
  • traveled to Europe
  • became wealthy

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