AP English Language and Composition Practice Test 21

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Question 13 questions

Time 14 minutes

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Questions 1-13 refer to the following information.

The passage below is excerpted from a memoir published in the mid-20th century.

You can live a lifetime and, at the end of it, know more about other people than
you know about yourself. You learn to watch other people, but you never watch
yourself because you strive against loneliness. If you read a book, or shuffle a deck of
cards, or care for a dog, you are avoiding yourself. The abhorrence of loneliness is as
5natural as wanting to live at all. If it were otherwise, men would never have bothered
to make an alphabet, nor to have fashioned words out of what were only animal
sounds, nor to have crossed continents-each man to see what the other looked like.
Being alone in an aeroplane even for so short a time as a night and a day, irrevocably
alone, with nothing to observe but your instruments and your own hands in
10semi-darkness, nothing to contemplate but the size of your small courage, nothing
to wonder about but the beliefs, the faces, and the hopes rooted in your mind-such
an experience can be as startling as the first awareness of a stranger walking by your
side at night. You are a stranger. It is dark already and I am over the south of Ireland.
There are the lights of Cork and the lights are wet; they are drenched with Irish rain,
15and I am above them and dry. I am above them and the plane roars in a sobbing
world, but it imparts no sadness to me. I feel the security of solitude, the exhilaration
of escape. So long as I can see the lights and imagine the people walking underneath
them, I feel selfishly triumphant, as if I have eluded care and left even the small sorrow
of rain in other hands.
20It is a little over an hour now since I left Abingdon, England. Wales and the Irish
Sea are behind me like so much time used up. On a long flight distance and time are
the same. But there had been a moment when Time stopped-and Distance too. It
was the moment I lifted the blue-and-silver Gull from the aerodrome, the moment
the photographers aimed their cameras, the moment I felt the craft refuse its burden
25and strain toward the earth in sullen rebellion, only to listen at last to the persuasion
of stick and elevators, the dogmatic argument of blueprints that said she had
to fly because the figures proved it. So she had flown, and once airborne, once she
had yielded to the sophistry of a draughtsman's board, she had said, "There, I have
lifted the weight. Now, where are we bound?"-and the question had frightened me.
30We are bound for a place thirty-six hundred miles from here-two thousand miles
of it unbroken ocean. Most of the way it will be night. We are flying west with the
night. So there behind me is Cork; and ahead of me is Berehaven Lighthouse. It is the
last light, standing on the last land. I watch it, counting the frequency of its flashes-
so many to the minute. Then I pass it and fly out to sea.
35The fear is gone now-not overcome nor reasoned away. It is gone because
something else has taken its place; the confidence and the trust, the inherent belief
in the security of land underfoot-now this faith is transferred to my plane, because
land has vanished and there is no other tangible thing to fix faith upon. Flight is but
momentary escape from the eternal custody of earth. . . .

1. The rhetorical function of the first sentence (lines 1–2) is best described as

2. The author uses all of the following phrases to illustrate the notion of the "abhorrence of loneliness" (line 4) EXCEPT

3. In line 8, the phrase "Being alone" is structurally parallel to the phrase

4. In lines 8–13 of the passage, the author uses an analogy between

5. The rhetorical purpose of switching from second person to first person in line 13 is primarily to

6. In paragraph 3 (lines 20–29), which of the following rhetorical devices is most prominent?

7. The tone of the passage as a whole can best be described as

8. The function of the phrase "sobbing world" (lines 15–16) is primarily to

9. The sentence in lines 21–22 ("On a long . . . same") has all of the following functions EXCEPT

10. The author's observation in line 22 that "Time stopped—and Distance too" is best described as an example of

I. hyperbole

II. ironic contrast

III. mixed metaphor

11. In the description of the take-off (lines 22–27) the author employs all of the following EXCEPT

12. In context, the expression "to fix faith upon" (line 38) is best interpreted as having which of the following meanings?

13. The passage as a whole can best be described as