AP English Language and Composition Practice Test 31

Questions 1-12 refer to the following information.

The passage is an excerpt from an essay by a 19th-century American author.

But it is mostly my own dreams I talk of, and that will somewhat excuse me for
talking of dreams at all. Everyone knows how delightful the dreams are that one
dreams one's self, and how insipid the dreams of others are. I had an illustration of
Linethe fact, not many evenings ago, when a company of us got telling dreams. I had by
5far the best dreams of any; to be quite frank, mine were the only dreams worth listening
to; they were richly imaginative, delicately fantastic, exquisitely whimsical, and
humorous in the last degree; and I wondered that when the rest could have listened
to them they were always eager to cut in with some silly, senseless, tasteless thing
that made me sorry and ashamed for them. I shall not be going too far if I say that it
10was on their part the grossest betrayal of vanity that I ever witnessed.
But the egotism of some people concerning their dreams is almost incredible.
They will come down to breakfast and bore everybody with a recital of the nonsense
that has passed through their brains in sleep, as if they were not bad enough when
they were awake; they will not spare the slightest detail; and if, by the mercy of
15Heaven, they have forgotten something, they will be sure to recollect it, and go back
and give it all over again with added circumstance. Such people do not reflect that
there is something so purely and intensely personal in dreams that they can rarely
interest anyone but the dreamer, and that to the dearest friend, the closest relation
or connection, they can seldom be otherwise than tedious and impertinent. The
20habit husbands and wives have of making each other listen to their dreams is especially
cruel. They have each other quite helpless, and for this reason they should all
the more carefully guard themselves from abusing their advantage. Parents should
not afflict their offspring with the rehearsal of their mental maunderings in sleep,
and children should learn that one of the first duties a child owes its parents is to
25spare them the anguish of hearing what it has dreamed about overnight. A like for-
bearance in regard to the community at large should be taught in the first trait of
good manners in public schools, if we ever come to teach good manners there.
Certain exceptional dreams, however, are so imperatively significant, so vitally
important, that it would be wrong to withhold them from the knowledge of those
30who happened not to dream them, and I could scarcely forgive myself if I did not,
however briefly, impart them. It was only last week, for instance, that I found myself
one night in the company of the Duke of Wellington, the great Duke, the Iron one,
in fact; and after a few moments of agreeable conversation on topics of interest
among gentlemen, his Grace said that now, if I pleased, he would like a couple of
35those towels. We had not been speaking of towels, that I remember, but it seemed
the most natural thing in the world that he should mention them in the connection,
whatever it was, and I went at once to get them for him. At the place where they
gave out towels, and where I found some very civil people, they told me that what I
wanted was not towels, and they gave me instead two bath-gowns, of rather scanty
40measure, butternut in color, and Turkish in texture. The garments made somehow
a very strong impression upon me, so that I could draw them now, if I could draw
anything, as they looked when they were held up to me. At the same moment, for no
reason that I can allege, I passed from a social to a menial relation to the Duke, and
foresaw that when I went back to him with those bath-gowns he would not thank me
45as one gentleman to another, but would offer me a tip as if I were a servant. . . .
This seemed to end the whole affair, and I passed on to other visions, which I cannot

1. In the first paragraph, the primary contrast made by the speaker is between

2. Which of the following best describes the rhetorical function of the second sentence in the second paragraph (lines 12–16)?

3. In context, the word "reflect" (line 16) is best interpreted to mean

4. The speaker in the passage can be described as a person with all of the following qualities EXCEPT

5. In line 17, "they" refers to which of the following?

I. "people" (line 16)

II. "dreams" (line 20)

III. "husbands and wives" (line 20)

6. The last sentence of the second paragraph (lines 25–27) can best be described as

7. That the speaker declares that some dreams "are so imperatively significant, so vitally important" (lines 28–29) is ironic mainly because

8. The speaker's report of his nighttime encounter with the Duke of Wellington (lines 32–45) contributes to the unity of the passage in which of the following ways?

9. The speaker's tone in the passage as a whole can best be described as

10. The shift in the speaker's attitude toward the Duke of Wellington (lines 42–45) is most accurately described as going from

11. In line 40, "Turkish" modifies

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