PTE Quiz – Reading – Multiple Choice Question (Single Answer)
After reading a text, answer a multiple-choice question on the content or tone of the text by selecting one response. Please leave your answer in the comment below, answer and explanation will be provided tomorrow.
So far, we have been looking at the work of humanist historians in the Renaissance and the new way in which they approached their subject. Not only did they use close reading of ancient texts, as you would expect, but they also did a lot of research in the archives. That is, they didn’t just read the historians that came before them, they looked for real documents. For example, they studied the records of cases that went to court, official letters that had survived, and so on to gel a fuller picture of how people really lived and went about their business.
These same techniques of historical research were used in what we can call “legal humanism”. The idea here was to get as accurate a picture as possible of the law and its practice in ancient, especially Roman, times. Legal historians did this with a view to refining the laws and applying them to the present historical situation. Legal scholarship’s original desire to recover and purify the heritage of the ancient world later came to be distorted by political views, but even here. in the 16′” century, such intense study could lead to unexpected conclusions. For example, in France, inquiries meant to uncover and apply the legal wisdom of the Romans ended by uncovering a Roman law so pure that it was totally alien. This law, in fact, belonged to the past and to a different society, and was therefore unusable.
What was the ultimate aim of legal scholarship?
a) To purify the ancient legal system.
b) To promote humanism in general.
c) To apply Roman law to their own society.
d) To perfect techniques of historical research
a) is incorrect because legal scholarship aimed to have an effect on the present, not on the past.
b) is incorrect because no mention is made of this idea.
d) is incorrect because no mention is made of the desire to perfect the methods of historical research.
c) is correct because the writer says: The idea here was to get as accurate a picture as possible of the law and its practice in ancient, especially Roman, times. Legal historians did this with a view to refining the laws and applying them to the present historical situation.
When it comes to an organ of such complexity as the eye, it is not difficult to understand why some people cannot accept that such perfection was arrived at by the trial and error, or gradual development, of natural selection. Yet people thought the Earth stood still until Copernicus told them otherwise. In the same way, it shouldn’t be hard to believe that a complex eye could be formed by natural selection if it can be shown that there were numerous stages from a simple and imperfect eye to a complex and perfect one, with each development being useful to its possessor and the variations being inherited.
However, the search for the stages through which an organ in any one species has come to perfection, which ideally would mean looking exclusively at its past generations, is rarely possible. Therefore, researchers are forced to examine species and genera of the same group to discover what stages or gradual developments are possible. Even the state of development of the same organ in a different class of creature may throw light on the steps taken towards perfection.
Some people object that in order for the eye to modify and still remain a useful instrument to its owner, many changes would have had to take place simultaneously. However, it is not necessary to suppose this if the modifications were extremely slight and gradual.
Why are researchers forced to look outside a specific species for clues to gradual development?
a) Because the eye is so complex and perfect already.
b) Because evidence of its ancestors is almost impossible to find.
c) Because the eye cannot change without losing its usefulness.
d) Because other species have more complex eyes.
a) is incorrect because, although the eye is described as complex, that isn’t given as a reason for studying other species.
c) is incorrect because it is contradicted by the text which says that the eye can change and remain useful if the changes are slight and gradual.
d) is incorrect because other species are examined to see what stages are possible, not because they have more complex eyes.
b) is correct because the writer says : … the search for the stages through which an organ in any one species has come to perfection, which ideally would mean looking exclusively at its past generations, is rarely possible. Therefore, researchers a.re forced to examine species and genera of the same group to discover what stages or gradual developments are possible.