SAT Sentence Completion Practice Question 129: Answer and Explanation

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Question: 129

6. Historian Carlo Botta often contradicted himself, as when he first championed and then ------- the ideals of the French Revolution.

A. invoked
B. investigated
C. conceived
D. coveted
E. denounced

Correct Answer: E

Explanation:

Explanation for Correct Answer E :

Choice (E) is correct. "Denounced" means spoke ill of. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "Historian Carlo Botta often contradicted himself, as when he first championed and then denounced the ideals of the French Revolution." The word "contradicted" indicates that the correct response will mean the opposite of championing, or supporting, ideals. Denouncing ideals is the opposite of championing them. Thus, to do both would be to contradict oneself.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer A :

Choice (A) is incorrect. "Invoked" means to call upon. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "Historian Carlo Botta often contradicted himself, as when he first championed and then invoked the ideals of the French Revolution." The word "contradicted" indicates that the correct response will mean the opposite of championing, or supporting, ideals. For Botta to invoke the Revolution's ideals after having championed them would not be a contradiction.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer B :

Choice (B) is incorrect. "Investigated" means researched. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "Historian Carlo Botta often contradicted himself, as when he first championed and then investigated the ideals of the French Revolution." The word "contradicted" indicates that the correct response will mean the opposite of championing, or supporting, ideals. While it might have been better for Botta to investigate the ideals before he championed them, his investigation doesn't mean he is contradicting himself.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer C :

Choice (C) is incorrect. "Conceived" means thought up. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "Historian Carlo Botta often contradicted himself, as when he first championed and then conceived the ideals of the French Revolution." The word "contradicted" indicates that the correct response will mean the opposite of championing, or supporting, ideals. Botta could not have conceived the ideals of the French Revolution after having championed them. He would have conceived them and later championed them.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer D :

Choice (D) is incorrect. "Coveted" means strongly desired. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "Historian Carlo Botta often contradicted himself, as when he first championed and then coveted the ideals of the French Revolution." The word "contradicted" indicates that the correct response will mean the opposite of championing, or supporting, ideals. Coveting ideals may be odd; however, coveting and championing ideals is not a contradiction.

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