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Scientists believe that dinosaurs came into being about 180 million years ago and died out about 60 million years ago. Since dinosaurs were reptiles, they must have developed from reptiles that lived before them.

The first reptiles appeared long before the dinosaurs. They were able to live in water and on land. They hatched eggs and the young ones had legs and lungs. They could breathe air and probably ate insects.

Then the other reptiles became larger and stronger. Some looked like big lizards and others like turtles. They had short tails, thick legs and big heads. They ate plants.

The first dinosaurs to develop resembled their reptile ancestors. They were slender and probably no bigger than a turkey and, like a turkey, they walked on their hind legs. Some kinds remained small, but others grew heavier and longer. There were even a few that were six meters long, weighing as much as an elephant. They had small heads and short, blunt teeth, which were only good for eating plants. They lived in low, swampy places.

Then came the next period in the Age of the Reptiles. Some of the plant-eating dinosaurs became so large that even four legs could not support them on land. These were the largest of all the reptiles. The largest dinosaurs were probably the biggest animals that ever walked the earth. They had to spend most of their lives in rivers and swamps. One of these giants was the Brontosaurus, 25 meters long and weighing about 40,000 kilograms!

At the same time, other dinosaurs were able to walk about on land. One of these, the Allosaurus, was 10 meters long, had sharp teeth and claws, and fed on the Brontosaurus and other plant eaters!

Dinosaurs developed in many different ways, but none of them ever developed a good brain. One of the reasons dinosaurs disappeared may be that they were just not bright enough to know how to survive and escape from all their natural enemies. But some scientists believe that changes in the earth and in climate killed off the dinosaurs. Swamps dried up and mountains appeared, making life difficult for dinosaurs that could not live on dry land. Also, changes in climate produced changes in vegetation, and since many dinosaurs were plant eaters, their food supply disappeared. Finally as the earth began to have seasons, shifting from hot summers to snowy winters, dinosaurs could not fit themselves to these changes and gradually became extinct.

There are other scientists who believe that the dinosaurs disappeared because of an incident that happened 65 million years ago. An enormous and very heavy asteroid hit the earth. There was a huge explosion and this caused tons of dust to be blasted into the earth's atmosphere. There was such a thick layer of dust covering our earth that it blocked out sunlight for as long as five years. That was how plants died and the dinosaurs were deprived of food. Eventually they starved to death.


Which of the following statements about the first reptiles in not true ?


They existed about 180 million years ago.

    (B) They were the ancestors of dinosaurs.
    (C) They were both land and sea animals.
    (D) They laid eggs.

How were the first dinosaurs similar to reptiles ?

    (A) They were of the same size
    (B) They walked on their fore legs.
    (C) They had big heads.

They were plant eaters.


In the passage, the word resembled means

    (A) survived in the same way as.
    (B) existed at the same time as.

had similarities to.

    (D) lived as long as.

From the fifth paragraph, we know that

    (A) the Brontosaurus fed on other smaller dinosaurs.
    (B) the Brontosaurus had sharp claws and teeth.

giant dinosaurs lived mostly in swamps and rivers.

    (D) the largest of the dinosaurs had two legs that could not support them.

According to the next text, which is the correct order of appearance of the dinosaurs ?

      I. The first dinosaurs were about the size of a turkey.

II. Then came the large reptiles that are plants.

III. The earliest reptiles ate insects.

IV. Then some dinosaurs grew to be as big as elephants.

    (A) II, III, I, IV


    (C) I, III, IV, II
    (D) IV, III, II, I
  6. Which of the following statements that appear in the passage is considered a fact ?
    (A) Dinosaurs became extinct 60 million years.
    (B) Dinosaurs were developed from reptiles.
    (C) The first reptiles ate insects.

The Age of the Reptiles was the period when reptiles ruled the earth.

  7. According to the passage, dinosaurs disappeared not because
    (A) they were killed by enemies.
    (B) they could not adapt to climatic changes.
    (C) they died of starvation.

they were killed in an explosion.

  8. When an asteroid hit the earth 65 million years ago, the following things happened except
    (A) there was a big explosion.

there were tons of dust on earth.

    (C) there was no sunlight on earth for a long period.
    (D) many types of vegetation died.
  9. What did the earliest reptiles feed on ?
  10. When did the earth begin to have seasons ?
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  Answers : 1) A    2) D    3) C    4) C    5) B     6) D     7) D     8) B

9) They fed on insects.

10 ) The earth began to have seasons about 60 million years ago.


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Comprehension 1


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