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Topics Workbook TOEFL

Units:   1   |  2   |   3   |   4   |   5   |  6   |   7   |   8   |   9   |   10  

Unit 4 Small beginnings


1 Reading for specific information

Read the article and find out this information. Ignore gaps 1-6.

a Where is the island of Run? - In the East Indies.
b What did Nathaniel Courthope do for a living? - He was a trader
Why was Run important? - Nutmeg trees grew there.
d How did Courthope die? - He was injured in the battle and died.
e Why did the British capture Manhattan? - The British were very angry when Run was taken by the Dutch for the second time and the Duke of York ordered to capture the Dutch-held island of Manhatten.
f How did New York get its name? - It was named after Duke of York.

Exam training Missing sentences

In the exam you may have to put missing sentences into a text. For this task remember to:

1 read what comes before and after the gap carefully.

2 decide what reference words like It (d) and this (f) refer back to.

2 Missing sentences

Sentences a-f are missing from the article. Can you put each one in an appropriate place?

a It was considered a luxury, as its powerful medicinal qualities were thought to be a cure for the plague.
b The English demanded the immediate return of Run while the Dutch wanted the return of Manhattan Island.
Today, almost four centuries after his death, both the English and Americans have forgotten Courthope.
d It is so insignificant that it doesn't even appear on the map.
e The men were led by an adventurer whose heroism was to change the course of American history.
f If this too was controlled by the Dutch, millions of pounds would be lost and the battle for nutmeg would be over.

3 Definitions

Explain the meaning of these words and phrases.

1 take part in a ... struggle (line 15) - to fight

2 worth its weight in gold - very expensive(line 17)

3 war broke out (line 33) - war started

4 months of negotiations (line 39) - months of talks

5 (he) helped to reshape history (line 44) - helped to change history

The man
who really

You may wonder what the connection is between this small island and the biggest city in America. Add a war over nutmeg* and an adventurer called Courthope, and it all becomes clear.

Run is one of the forgotten islands of the world. It is less than three kilometres long and one kilometer wide. 1................ It is a small piece of rock in a remote part of the East Indies, separated from Australia by 960 kilometres of ocean.

But despite its size, Run was not always so neglected. For much of the seventeenth century there were settlers there, and England and Holland fiercely fought for control of the island. For many years, a tiny band of courageous Englishmen fought off an army much stronger than themselves. 2 ................That man was Nathaniel Courthope.

Nathaniel Courthope was a trader who worked for the East India Company. He arrived in Run in 1616 and took part in the three-year struggle against the Dutch. Surprisingly, the fight was for control of Run's nutmeg trees, whose lemon-yellow fruit was worth its weight in gold. 3................Unfortunately it was also very rare. In fact, nutmeg grows on six remote islands in the West Indies. As a result the value of nutmeg rose by an incredible 60,000 per cent, and Courthope was sent to defend Run, Englands last remaining source of the spice. 4 .

Courthopes two ships arrived in Run's harbour in December 1616. At first, the Dutch tried to starve Courthope and his men rather than fight them, but amasingly they managed to survive. Finally, in 1620 some of them tried to leave the island by ship. The Dutch surprised the ship, opened fire on it and Courthope was injured. He never recovered. After that, the island surrendered to the Dutch.

In 1652, The war ended and Run was given back to the English. But soon after, war broke out between the two countries again, and Run was taken by the Dutch once more. This time the English were so angry that the Duke of York sent warships across the Atlantic and captured the Dutch-held island of Manhattan. The two sides met to try and find a solution to the problem. 5 ................ . However, after months of negotiations, it was agreed that the Dutch should keep Run and the English should keep Manhattan. Soon afterwards the tiny settlement around Manhattan was renamed New York.

6............... . Yet his defence of Run helped to reshape history. Although his death robbed England of her nutmeg, it was to give her the biggest of apples!

British Airways Highlife magazine

*nutmeg - powder made from a plant which gives flavour to food

Unit 1. BORN TO BE BRILLIANT. Reading. In the mind's eye.
Unit 1. BORN TO BE BRILLIANT. Vocabulary. Phrasal verbs with more than one meaning.
Unit 1. BORN TO BE BRILLIANT. Grammar. Modals. Remember + ing or to-inf.
Unit 1. BORN TO BE BRILLIANT. Writing descriptions. Travel and sightseeing.

Unit 2. THE WRONG MAN. Reading. A sense of identity.
Unit 2. THE WRONG MAN. Vocabulary. Crime. Match the people with the definitions.
Unit 2. THE WRONG MAN. Grammar. Present simple, present continuous and present perfect.
Unit 2. THE WRONG MAN. Writing a profile. Words describing appearance.

Unit 3. TIMES PAST. Reading. BRINGING the past to life.

Unit 3. TIMES PAST. Vocabulary. TV programmes.
Unit 3. TIMES PAST. Grammar. Regular and Irregular Verbs.
Unit 3. TIMES PAST. Writing a Talk. The Millenium Dome.

Unit 4. SMALL BEGINNINGS. Reading. The man who really founded New York.
Unit 4. SMALL BEGINNINGS. Vocabulary. Nouns, verbs, adjectives.
Unit 4. SMALL BEGINNINGS. Grammar. The Future. Will.
Unit 4. SMALL BEGINNINGS. Writing a letter of complaint.

Unit 5. FAME AND FORTUNE. Reading. A dream come true? How winning a lottery can affect your life?
Unit 5.  FAME AND FORTUNE. Vocabulary. Prepositions. Money.
Unit 5.  FAME AND FORTUNE. Grammar. Modals. Language patterns: verb + noun/pronoun + infinitive with to.
Unit 5.  FAME AND FORTUNE. Writing a composition. The Lottery.

Unit 6. TAKING RISKS. Vocabulary. Phrasal verbs with take.
Unit 6. TAKING RISKS. Grammar. Relative pronoun. Who, whom, which or that Quiz. Purpose and result. Language patterns: verb + direct object + (to) do.
Unit 6. TAKING RISKS. Writing a biography.

Unit 7. MEANS OF COMMUNICATION. Reading. Getting your Message Across.
Unit 7. MEANS OF COMMUNICATION. Vocabulary. Adjectives ending in -ed an -ing. Feelings. Body language.
Unit 7. MEANS OF COMMUNICATION. Grammar. Present perfect and past simple; present perfect simple and continuous; the passive.

Unit 8. WHAT IF ... ? Reading. Poets and pop stars.
Unit 8.  WHAT IF ... ? Vocabulary. Words to do with poetry and music.
Unit 8.  WHAT IF ... ? Grammar. Conditionals. The verbs tell, talk, say and speak.
Unit 8.  WHAT IF ... ? Writing a discursive composition. An ideal job.

Unit 9. TRAVELLERS' TALES. Reading. A trip to America.
Unit 9. TRAVELLERS' TALES. Vocabulary. Describing a journey.
Unit 9. TRAVELLERS' TALES. Grammar. Past simple, past continuous or past perfect? Reflexive verbs.
Unit 9. TRAVELLERS' TALES. Writing a story. My holiday nightmare.

Unit 10. THE RIGHT CHOICE. Reading. DANGER: woman at work.
Unit 10. THE RIGHT CHOICE. Vocabulary. Negative prefixes. Phrasal verbs give up • get on • turn down • take on • fit in
Unit 10. THE RIGHT CHOICE. Grammar. Reported Speech. Direct and indirect objects.
Unit 10. THE RIGHT CHOICE. Writing a job application.