Below is the opening of Francis Hogsdon Burnett’s classic story “The Secret Garden.”
The book tells of the adventures of Mary Lennox. After Mary’s parents die, she is sent to live with her uncle. There Mary uncovers mysteries, makes friends, and finds the importance of nature. You can read the rest of this book here.
Excerpt: The Secret Garden
When Mary Lennox was sent to Misselthwaite Manor to live with her uncle everybody said she was the most disagreeable-looking child ever seen. It was true, too. She had a little thin face and a little thin body, thin light hair and a sour expression. Her hair was yellow, and her face was yellow because she had been born in India and had always been ill in one way or another.
Her father had held a position under the English Government and had always been busy and ill himself, and her mother had been a great beauty who cared only to go to parties and amuse herself with gay people. She had not wanted a little girl at all, and when Mary was born she handed her over to the care of an Ayah.
She never remembered seeing familiarly anything but the faces of her Ayah and the other native servants. They always obeyed her and gave her her own way in everything. By the time she was six years old she was as tyrannical and selfish a little pig as ever lived.
The young English governess who came to teach her to read and write dislike her so much that she give up her place in three months. When other governesses came, they always went away in a shorter time than the first one. So if Mary had not chosen to want to know how to read books, she would never have learned her letters at all.
There are certain words in a sentence that can tell you exactly what a word or phrase means.
Clue words that can help you are:
called | is, are, was, were | like | include, including | such as | known as | meaning | or
The following sentences contain context clues for the words in bold. Select the word or group of words that hints to its meaning in the list. (Note the sentences are all from various authors).
It is possible to figure out the meaning of a word from the context in which the word was used. There are various types of context clues. You can determine the meaning of a word by watching out for an inference, a definition of the word, given examples, an antonym or a synonym of the given word.
These questions test how well you can determine the meaning of some words