The phoenix was, according to legend, a bird which died in a fire
but came out of the flames alive. In ancient Egypt, the phoenix was
connected with the worship of the sun.
According to some stories, it was like a large eagle, with red and
gold feathers. It lived for hundreds, or even thousands of years. But
when its death was near, it built a nest of the scented branches of
trees and spices. It then sang a beautiful, haunting and sad song,
and fanned the nest until it burst into flames. The phoenix died in the
fire it had made, but from the flames and ashes came a new
phoenix, which would live for many years.
In other legends, the phoenix was like an Egyptian heron called
the bennu. It was also associated with the worship of the sun and is
found carved on ancient Egyptian monuments as a symbol of the
rising sun and life after death. Because the phoenix was regarded as
immortal, it was adopted by the Christian Church as a symbol of the
Resurrection of Jesus and of eternal life. It has also been used as a
sign over chemists’ shops from its association with alchemy and the
search for immortality.
( ) 1. What is the main idea of this passage?
(A) The phoenix was to the Egyptians what the sun was to the Christians.
(B) The phoenix played an important role in Greek mythology.
(C) The phoenix was burned to ashes before it was reborn and it symbolized immortality.
(D) The account of western civilization would not be complete without mentioning the phoenix.
( ) 2. Which of the following words is closest in meaning to “immortal” in paragraph 3?
(A) Eternal (B) Fragile (C) Agile (D) Conceited
( ) 3. What did a phoenix do in preparation for its death?
(A) It kept singing until it was completely exhausted.
(B) It built a nest and then burned it.
(C) It migrated to where the grass was greener.
(D) It built a fire and burned its mate along with itself.
( ) 4. According to the passage, which of the following is NOT true?
(A) The phoenix resembled a large eagle.
(B) The phoenix was likely to live to be thousands of years old.
(C) The phoenix was dubbed “Bennu” in ancient Egypt.
(D) Nowadays, the phoenix is still used as a sign over drugstores.
fan n. 扇子、扇形物、螺旋槳(葉片) v. 扇、激起、驅走、拍翅 (often)
Mrs. Walters cooled herself with a fan.
The workers were fanning social unrest with their violent protests.