Official14托福阅读Passage2Maya Water Problems文本+题目原文+答案解析【雷哥托福】2019-01-27 11:39:40 发布 来源：雷哥托福 阅读量:3253
TPO14托福阅读Passage2Maya Water Problems文本+题目原文+答案解析
Maya Water Problems
To understand the ancient Mayan people who lived in the area that is today southern Mexico and Central America and the ecological difficulties they faced, one must first consider their environment, which we think of as "jungle" or "tropical rainforest." [■] This view is inaccurate, and the reason proves to be important. [■] Properly speaking, tropical rainforests grow in high-rainfall equatorial areas that remain wet or humid all year round. But the Maya homeland lies more than sixteen hundred kilometers from the equator, at latitudes 17 to 22 degrees north, in a habitat termed a "seasonal tropical forest." [■] That is, while there does tend to be a rainy season from May to October, there is also a dry season from January through April. If one focuses on the wet months, one calls the Maya homeland a "seasonal tropical forest"; if one focuses on the dry months, one could instead describe it as a "seasonal desert." [■]
From north to south in the Yucatan Peninsula, where the Maya lived, rainfall ranges from 18 to 100 inches (457 to 2,540 millimeters) per year, and the soils become thicker, so that the southern peninsula was agriculturally more productive and supported denser populations. But rainfall in the Maya homeland is unpredictably variable between years; some recent years have had three or four times more rain than other years. As a result, modern farmers attempting to grow corn in the ancient Maya homelands have faced frequent crop failures, especially in the north. The ancient Maya were presumably more experienced and did better, but nevertheless they too must have faced risks of crop failures from droughts and hurricanes.
Although southern Maya areas received more rainfall than northern areas, problems of water were paradoxically more severe in the wet south. While that made things hard for ancient Maya living in the south, it has also made things hard for modern archaeologists who have difficulty understanding why ancient droughts caused bigger problems in the wet south than in the dry north. The likely explanation is that an area of underground freshwater underlies the Yucatan Peninsula, but surface elevation increases from north to south, so that as one moves south the land surface lies increasingly higher above the water table. In the northern peninsula the elevation is sufficiently low that the ancient Maya were able to reach the water table at deep sinkholes called cenotes, or at deep caves. In low-elevation north coastal areas without sinkholes, the Maya would have been able to get down to the water table by digging wells up to 75 feet (22 meters) deep. But much of the south lies too high above the water table for cenotes or wells to reach down to it. Making matters worse, most of the Yucatan Peninsula consists of karst, a porous sponge-like limestone terrain where rain runs straight into the ground and where little or no surface water remains available.
How did those dense southern Maya populations deal with the resulting water problem? It initially surprises us that many of their cities were not built next to the rivers but instead on high terrain in rolling uplands. The explanation is that the Maya excavated depressions, or modified natural depressions, and then plugged up leaks in the karst by plastering the bottoms of the depressions in order to create reservoirs, which collected rain from large plastered catchment basins and stored it for use in the dry season. For example, reservoirs at the Maya city of Tikal held enough water to meet the drinking water needs of about 10,000 people for a period of 18 months. At the city of Coba the Maya built dikes around a lake in order to raise its level and make their water supply more reliable. But the inhabitants of Tikal and other cities dependent on reservoirs for drinking water would still have been in deep trouble if 18 months passed without rain in a prolonged drought. A shorter drought in which they exhausted their stored food supplies might already have gotten them in deep trouble, because growing crops required rain rather than reservoirs.
TPO14 托福阅读Passage2 Maya Water Problems 题目
Question 1 of 13: Why does the author call the Mayan homeland both a “seasonal tropical forest” and "seasonal desert”?
A. To illustrate how the climate of the Mayan homeland varied from region to region
B. To explain how the climate of the Mayan homeland is similar to that of a jungle or tropical rainforest
C. To emphasize the vast size of the area that comprised the Mayan homeland in ancient times
D. To make the point that the Mayan homeland is climatically more complex than is generally assumed
Question 2 of 13: Which of the following is NOT mentioned in paragraph 2 as a difference between the northern and southern Yucatan Peninsula?
A. The annual rainfall was greater in the south.
B. The population density was lower in the north.
C. Agricultural productivity was greater in the south
D. Rainfall was more unpredictable and variable in the south.
Question 3 of 13: Which of the following statements about ancient and modern agriculture in the Yucatan Peninsula is supported by paragraph 2?
A. Modern agricultural methods have solved many of the ancient problems of farming in the Yucatan Peninsula.
B. Ancient Mayan farmers may have been somewhat more successful at farming in the Yucatan Peninsula than farmers are today.
C. Farming today is easier than in the past because environmentalchanges in the Yucatan Peninsula have increased available rainfall
D. The Yucatan soils in which ancient farmers worked were richer, more productive, and thicker than they are today.
Question 4 of 13: The word "paradoxically” in the passage is closest in meaning to
Question 5 of 13: The phrase “The likely explanation" in the passage refers to the explanation for why
A. the southern Maya areas received more rainfall than the northern areas
B. modern archaeologists have difficulty understanding ancient droughts
C. water problems were most severe in the wet south
D. land surface in the south is so high above the water table
Question 6 of 13: Which of the following statements about the availability of water in the Mayan homeland is supported by paragraph 3?
A. The construction of wells was an uncommon practice in both the north and the south because it was too difficult to dig through the karst.
B. In most areas in the north and the south, rainwater was absorbed directly into the porous karst.
C. The water table was an important resource for agriculture in both the north and the south of the Yucatan Peninsula,
D. The lack of surface water in both the north and the south was probably due to the fact that most of it was quickly used up for agricultural purposes.
Question 7 of 13: According to paragraph 3, why was the southern Mayan homeland hard to farm?
A. The presence of numerous sinkholes and wells interfered with farming.
B. Southern soil lacked the depth crops needed for growth.
C. Underground water was too far below the surface to reach.
D. The presence of karst caused frequent flooding.
Question 8 of 13: Which of the sentences below best expresses the essential information in the highlighted sentence in the passage? Incorrect choices change the meaning in important ways or leave out essential information.
A. Southern Maya populations obtained the water they needed for the dry season by collecting and storing rainwater in sealed depressions.
B. The Maya are credited with creating methods for modifying natural rainwater and storing it.
C. Leaks in the karst caused difficulties in the creation of reservoirs, which were needed to store water for the dry season.
D. Southern Mayans were more successful at collecting rain than storing it during dry seasons.
Question 9 of 13: What can be inferred from paragraph 4 about how residents of Tikal met their needs for water and food during most periods of drought?
A. They depended upon water and food that had been stored for use during the dry season.
B. They obtained drinking water and water for crop irrigation from Coba dikes.
C. They located their population centers near a lake where water was available for drinking and watering crops.
D. They moved locations every 18 months to find new croplands and water sources.
Question 10 of 13: The word "prolonged" in the passage is closest in meaning to
Question 11 of 13: The word "exhausted" in the passage is closest in meaning to
A. used up
D. relied upon
Question 12 of 13: Look at the four squares [■] that indicate where the following sentence could be added to the passage. Where would the sentence best fit? Click on a square to add the sentence to the passage.
The difference between the two climates challenged the Maya who had to deal with both.
A. This view is inaccurate, and the reason proves to be important.
B. Properly speaking, tropical rainforests grow in high-rainfall equatorial areas that remain wet or humid all year round.
C. That is, while there does tend to be a rainy season from May to October, there is also a dry season from January through April.
D. From north to south in the Yucatan Peninsula, where the Maya lived, rainfall ranges from 18 to 100 inches (457 to 2,540 millimeters) per year, and the soils become thicker, so that the southern peninsula was agriculturally more productive and supported denser populations.
Question 12 of 13: Directions: Select from the seven phrases below the phrases that correctly characterize the southern Mayan homeland and the phrases that correctly characterize the northern Mayan homeland. Drag each phrase you select into the appropriate column of the table. Two of the phrases will NOT be used. This question is worth 3 points.
Southern Mayan homeland
Northern Mayan homeland
A. City of Tikal
B. Predictable rainfall
C. High above water table
D. Used reservoirs
E. Obtained water from wells
F. Dramatically improved corn crops
G. Had comparatively thin layer of soil
TPO14 托福阅读Passage2 Maya Water Problems真题解析
Question 1 of 13
解析：根据“tropical forest” 看到第一到第四句，根据“seasonal desert”定位到原文最后一句；大意就是说通常我们认为是“jungle”或者“tropical rainforest”，但是这种观点不是特别精确，因为典型的tropical rainforests的地理分布和Maya的是不一样的。第五句接着说到，五到十月，是雨季；一到四月又干旱，看你关注季节的什么点，那就是什么气候。综上所述，就是又有雨季又有旱季，所以选择D选项，说明Maya地区气候复杂。
Question 2 of 13
解析：排除法。A选项比较rainfall 定位到第二段第一句，从北到南，降雨量从18 inches到100 inches，也就是南方降雨量大，A正确，不选；B选项关键词是population density，第一句的后半句，说到southern peninsula的农业更发达，人口更密集，也就是说北边人口密度小一些，B正确，不选；C选项，在分析B选项的时候已经说明了，也正确，不选；D选项原文说的是“But rainfall in the Maya homeland is unpredictably…”不是比较南北的降雨量的不可预计，属于信息杂合的错误。
Question 3 of 13
解析：关键词是agriculture，回归到段落的“As a result…”(Q2定位信息只提及了southern peninsula的农业更发达)。因为降雨量年年都不一样，所以很难预测来年的降雨量，结果就是尝试在古玛雅homelands种植corn的现代农民在农耕种植上经受了更多的失败，尤其是在北方。然后结论说：古玛雅农民被认定在面对不同降雨量的这种气候变因时更有经验，做得更好一些，但是他们肯定也因为恶劣的气候也遭受过失败的风险。也就是在同样的问题上，是古玛雅农民做得更好。对应B选项。
Question 4 of 13
Question 5 of 13
解析：根据题干定位原文段落的前三句；说到虽然南方降雨量充沛，但是缺水问题更严重。所以The likely explanation解释的是“为什么本来湿润的南部地区的缺水问题比干燥的北部地区更严重。”
Question 6 of 13
解析：题目问的是整个段落支持论证了哪个选项，根据选项做排除法。A选项的The construction of wells定位到原文段落的倒数三句，原文提及，因为地势原因，北部打井容易，南部难，A选项错误; B选项porous karst为定位信息点，对应原来段落的最后一句，Yucatan Peninsula大部分地区是喀斯特地貌，一种多孔的海绵样的石灰岩地形，表面无法累积水，直接被多孔的地貌吸收走了，所以B选项正确，保留；C选项对应定位至第三句和倒数第二句，没有提及water table的重要性；D选项说到的surface water只有最后一句说到，原因和结果也没有提到。综上所述，选择B选项。
Question 7 of 13
解析：题目问的是为什么对于玛雅南部人来说，农耕变得很困难。回归段落，我们可以看到段落一开始就在说南方虽然降雨量多，但是其实比北方缺水，然后开始解释“The likely explanation…”（参见Q5），说到的是地势差异和地貌差异，所以针对这个why也可以看成对likely explanation的解释；因为原文用大量文字说南北的地下水面，说北部地表距离地下水面近，打井容易所以不干旱，南部相反，综合分析，选择C选项。
Question 8 of 13
解析：看高亮句句子逻辑和主句成分，The explanation is that the Maya excavated depressions and then plugged up leaks in the karst by plastering the bottoms of the depressions in order to create reservoirs. 玛雅人挖掘洼地，通过填补洼地的底部来创造蓄水池，从而阻塞漏水的缝隙。然后蓄水池有一个非限制性定语从句来修饰，是用来收集雨水和干旱季节储存以备不时之需的。综上所述，转换句应该能体现原句的目的状语从句的部分，而且主句主语不应该有变化，所以选择A选项。
Question 9 of 13
解析：关键定位词是residents of Tikal，定位原味段落“But the inhabitants of Tikal…”句中的“dependent on reservoirs for drinking water would still have been in deep trouble if 18 months passed without rain in a prolonged drought.”锁定了A选项为正确答案。
Question 10 of 13
Question 11 of 13
Question 12 of 13
解析：注意插入句子的“The difference”，那么插入句的前文应该提及了不同，是关于“two climates”，而且这两种climates一定都介绍完了，符合这种情况的，只有D选项的位置。
Question 13 of 13
Southern Mayan homeland: ACD
A．City of Tikal
C．High above water table
Northern Mayan homeland: EG
E．Obtained water from wells
G．Had comparatively thin layer of soil