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Crazy English

Test

1. Write out the name of the dictionary you are using for this test.

2. Match the following word relationship types with their descriptions by writing the appropriate letter on the line before each.

_____ oxymora             a. same meanings, different pronunciation and spelling

_____ heteronyms         b. same pronunciation, different spelling and meanings

_____ homonyms          c. same spelling, different pronunciation and meanings

_____ synonyms           d. opposite meanings, different spelling and pronunciation

3. Match the following word relationship types with their examples by writing the appropriate letter on the line before each.

_____ oxymora             a. aisle, I’ll, isle

_____ heteronyms         b. pretty, beautiful, attractive, good-looking, lovely

_____ homonyms          c. loose tights, small fortune, plastic silverware

_____ synonyms           d. agape, more, object, axes, sake, sow, tear

4. People who attack the biological “Theory of Evolution” sometimes argue that it is “just a theory, not a fact.” The state of Alabama even requires that a disclaimer to this effect be placed in the front of every biology textbook used in the state. Unfortunately such people are displaying a fundamental misunderstanding of the nature of English vocabulary; that one word can have multiple, even contradictory, meanings. They believe that they use the word “theory” in the same sense as biologists do. In the spaces below write out the two senses of theory (numbers included) that show their confusion.

a. The meaning used when biologists discuss the “Theory of Evolution”.

b. The meaning used when critics attack the “Theory of Evolution”.

5. Look up tarry in the dictionary you are using.

a. How many pronunciations for it are shown? _____

b. Write out a definition for one of the pronunciations. Include its number.

c. Use the word, in the above sense, in a clear, legible, correctly written sentence.

d. What part of speech does tarry play in your sentence? ______________________

e. Write out a definition for another pronunciation of tarry. Include its number.

f. Use the word, in the above sense, in a clear, legible, correctly written sentence.

g. What part of speech does tarry play in your 2nd sentence? ____________________

6. Common “wrong word” spelling errors I’ve found on student papers over the years include “your” where “you’re” was needed, “by” where “buy” was needed, and “cant” where “can’t” was needed. Which of the word relationship types we’ve worked with this quarter do these examples illustrate?


Check the answer key.


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original web posting: Monday, October 22, 2001
last modified: Sunday, November 21, 2004