SAT Sentence Completion Practice Question 301: Answer and Explanation

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Question: 301

7. The treasurer was intimidated by the ------- demeanor of the auditors who neither spoke nor smile when they arrived

A. amiable
B. ethical
C. glacial
D. taunting
E. nondescript

Correct Answer: C

Explanation:

Explanation for Correct Answer C :

Choice (C) is correct. "Glacial" means frigid or unfriendly. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "The treasurer was intimidated by the glacial demeanor of the auditors who neither spoke nor smiled when they arrived." It is not surprising that the treasurer would be "intimidated" by unfriendly auditors.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer A :

Choice (A) is incorrect. "Amiable" means good-natured. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "The treasurer was intimidated by the amiable demeanor of the auditors who neither spoke nor smiled when they arrived." The auditors' serious greeting does not suggest that their "demeanor," or behavior, is friendly. In addition, an "amiable" person does not usually "intimidate," or frighten, others into submission.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer B :

Choice (B) is incorrect. "Ethical" means moral. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "The treasurer was intimidated by the ethical demeanor of the auditors who neither spoke nor smiled when they arrived." The auditors' actions described in the sentence should support the missing term. The fact that the auditors "neither spoke nor smiled," however, has nothing to do with their code of ethics.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer D :

Choice (D) is incorrect. "Taunting" means mocking. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "The treasurer was intimidated by the taunting demeanor of the auditors who neither spoke nor smiled when they arrived." Although a mocking demeanor could certainly be "intimidating," a "taunt" is a spoken challenge or insult.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer E :

Choice (E) is incorrect. "Nondescript" means dull or not easily described. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "The treasurer was intimidated by the nondescript demeanor of the auditors who neither spoke nor smiled when they arrived." People who neither speak nor smile may be considered "nondescript," but it is unclear why the treasurer would find dull behavior intimidating.

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