Frequently Asked Fill in the Blanks (Reading & Writing) – 1

1. An exotic type of diamond may have come to Earth from outer space, scientists say. Called carbonado or “black” diamonds, the weird/odd/mysterious/obscure/confusing stones are found in Brazil and the Central African Republic. They are uncommon/abnormal/surprising/unfamiliar/unusual for being the color of charcoal and full of frothy bubbles. The diamonds, which can weigh in at more than 3,600 carats, can also have a face that looks like melted glass. Because of their strange/weird/incidental/seasonal/odd appearance, the diamonds are unsuited/inapposite/incompatible/unsuitable/unseemly as gemstones. But they do have industrial applications and were used in the drill bits that helped dig the Panama Canal. Now a team led by Stephen Haggerty of Florida International University in Miami has presented a new study suggesting that the odd stones were brought to Earth by asteroid billions of years ago.

The findings were published online in the journal Astrophysical Journal Letters on December 20. The scientists exposed polished pieces of carbonado to extremely intense infrared light. The test revealed the presence of much hydrogen carbon bonds, indicating that the diamonds probably formed in a hydrogen—rich environment – such as that found in space. The diamonds also showed strong similarities to tiny nanodiamonds, which are frequently found in meteorites. “They’re not similar/alike/identical/equal/matching,” Haggerty said, “but they’re very similar.” Astrophysicists, he added, have developed theories predicting that nanodiamonds form easily in the titanic stellar explosions called supernovas, which scatter debris through interstellar space. The deposits in the Central African Republic and Brazil, he said, apparently/doubtless/belike/perhaps/probably come from the impact of diamond rich asteroid billions of years ago, when South America and Africa were joined.


2. Richard Morris, of the school of accounting at the University of NSW, which requires an initial/admission/entrance/coming score in the top 5 per cent of students, says presence/appearance/turning up/attendance has been a problem since the late 1990s. “Sometimes in the lectures we’ve only got about one-third of students apply/enrolled/register/admit attending.” He said. “It definitely is a problem, if you don’t turn up to class you’re missing out on the whole richness of the training/education/experience/history: you don’t think a whole lot, you don’t attract/win/grip/absorb/engage in debates with other students- or with your teachers.” It is not all gloom, said Professor John Dearn, a Pro Vice-Chancellor at the University of  Canberra, who said the internet was modifying/changing/altering/transforming the way students access and use information. “It is strange that despite all the evidence as to their ineffectiveness, regular/common/standard/traditional/routine lectures seem to persist in our university.”


3. Leonard Lauder, chief executive of the company his mother founded, says she always thought she “was growing a nice little business.” And that it is – a little business that command/dominate/controls/rule/manage 45% of the cosmetics market in U.S. department stores. A little business that sells in 118 countries and last year grew to be $3.6 billion big in sales. The Lauder family’s shares are worth more than $6 billion.

But early on, there wasn’t a burgeoning business; there weren’t houses in New York, Palm Beach, Fla., or the south of France. It is said that at one point there was one person to answer the telephones who modified/altered/changed/changed/reshaped her voice to become the shipping or billing department as needed.

You more or less know the Estee Lauder story because it’s a chapter from the book of American business folklore. In short, Josephine Esther Mentzer, daughter of immigrants, lived above her father’s hardware store in Corona, a section of Queens in New York City. She started her venture/endeavor/move/scheme/enterprise by selling skin creams concocted by her uncle, a chemist, in beauty shops, beach clubs and resorts.

No doubt the potions were good Estée Lauder was a quality fanatic – but the saleslady was better. Much better. And she simply outworked everyone else in the cosmetics industry. She stride/followed/stalked/tracked/hunt the bosses of New York City department stores until she got some counter space at Saks Fifth Avenue in 1948. And once in that space, she utilized a personal selling approach that proved as mighty/potent/dominant/forceful/sound as the promise of her skin regimens and perfumes.


4. The most essential/key/required/important/vital ingredient in Indian cooking, the primary/basic/fundamental/vital/elementary element with which all dishes begin and, normally, the cheapest vegetable available, the pink onion is an essential item in the shopping basket of families of all classes.

But in recent weeks, the onion has started to seem an unaffordable richness/wealth/luxury/prosperity/confort for India’s poor. Over the past few days, another sharp rush/gush/flow/overflow/surge in prices has begun to unsettle the influential urban middle classes.

The sudden spike in prices has been caused by large exports to neighboring countries and a shortage of furnish/afford/provide/equip/supply.


5. Stress is what you feel when you have to handle more than you are used to. When you are stressed, your body answer/responds/counter/acknowledge/return as though you are in danger. It makes cell/medicine/pill/safety/hormones that speed up your heart, make you breathe faster, and give you a burst of energy. This is called the fight-or-flight stress response.

Some stress is normal and even useful. Stress can help if you need to work hard or react quickly. For example, it can help you win a race or finish an main/important/vital/essential/basic job on time.

But if stress happens too often or lasts too long, it can have bad effects. It can be linked to headaches, an upset stomach, back pain, and trouble sleeping. It can weaken your immune system, making it harder to fight off illness/disease/infection/problem/defect.




  1. mysterious, unusual, odd, unsuitable, identical, probably 
  2. entrance, attendance, enrolled, experience, engage, transforming, traditional 
  3. controls, changed, enterprise, stalked, potent
  4. vital, basic, luxury, surge, supply
  5. responds, hormones, important, disease


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