SAT Sentence Completion Practice Question 124: Answer and Explanation

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Question: 124

1. Although usually warm and ------- in greeting friends, Lauren was too reserved ever to be truly -------.

A. joyous . . conventional
B. cordial . . effusive
C. restrained . . gracious
D. dismissive . . ebullient
E. genial . . antisocial

Correct Answer: B

Explanation:

Explanation for Correct Answer B :

Choice (B) is correct. "Cordial" means warm and friendly. "Effusive" means unrestrained in emotional expression. If one were to insert these terms into the text, the sentence would read "Although usually warm and cordial in greeting friends, Lauren was too reserved ever to be truly effusive." The first missing term is similar in meaning to "warm," which, in this instance, means affectionate. The second term should have a meaning that is the opposite of "reserved," which means restrained or shy. "Cordial" means socially warm and "effusive" is the opposite of reserved.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer A :

Choice (A) is incorrect. "Joyous" means happy. "Conventional" means lacking originality or individuality. If one were to insert these terms into the text, the sentence would read "Although usually warm and joyous in greeting friends, Lauren was too reserved ever to be truly conventional." The first missing term is similar in meaning to "warm," which, in this instance, means affectionate. The second word should have a meaning that is the opposite of "reserved," which means restrained or shy. "Conventional" is not the opposite of reserved.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer C :

Choice (C) is incorrect. "Restrained" means kept under control. "Gracious" means friendly. If one were to insert these terms into the text, the sentence would read "Although usually warm and restrained in greeting friends, Lauren was too reserved ever to be truly gracious." The first missing term is similar in meaning to "warm," which, in this instance, means affectionate. The second word should have a meaning that is the opposite of "reserved," which means restrained or shy. The word "restrained" does not suggest affection.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer D :

Choice (D) is incorrect. "Dismissive" describes an attitude of offhand rejection. "Ebullient" means full of high spirits. If one were to insert these terms into the text, the sentence would read "Although usually warm and dismissive in greeting friends, Lauren was too reserved ever to be truly ebullient." The first missing term is similar in meaning to "warm," which, in this instance, means affectionate. The second word should have a meaning that is the opposite of "reserved," which means restrained or shy. Lauren would not be both warm and dismissive when she greets friends, since the these are two opposite attitudes.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer E :

Choice (E) is incorrect. "Genial" means cheerful. "Antisocial" means unsociable. If one were to insert these terms into the text, the sentence would read "Although usually warm and cordial in greeting friends, Lauren was too reserved ever to be truly effusive." The first missing term is similar in meaning to "warm," which, in this instance, means affectionate. The second word should have a meaning that is the opposite of "reserved," which means restrained or shy. One would not say that a person is too reserved to be antisocial. An extremely reserved person might be considered antisocial.

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