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Gap-Fill Activities

- Upper Intermediate / Advanced -

Read the four texts below, and chose the word which best fits each gap from the list below each exercise.

Exercise One

Pitcairn Island

The Pitcairn Islands are  in the South Pacific Ocean, about halfway Peru and New Zealand. The larger island of Pitcairn was in 1767 by the British and settled in 1790 by the mutineers from the English ship 'Bounty' and their Tahitian companions. Pitcairn was the Pacific island to become a British colony (in 1838) and today the last vestige of the British empire in the South Pacific. The population of about 50 are the of the Bounty mutineers and their Tahitian wives. English is the official language, but many islanders communicate in Pitcairnese (a pidgin language comprising of elements of 18th century English and a Tahitian dialect).

The of this tiny island exist on fishing, subsistence farming, handicrafts, and postage stamps. The fertile soil of the valleys produces a wide of fruits and vegetables, including citrus, sugarcane, watermelons, bananas, yams, and beans. Bartering is an part of the economy. The major sources of revenue are the sale of postage stamps to collectors and the sale of handicrafts to passing . It has no port or harbour; and supplies must be transported by rowed longboat from larger ships stationed .

1    a) located    b) sited    c) stationed    d) settled

2    a) middle    b) between    c) centre    d) close

3    a) uncovered    b) discovered    c) created    d) invented

4    a) opening    b) premiere    c) beginning    d) first

5    a) remains    b) remnant    c) spare    d) residue

6    a) ancestors    b) descendants    c) heir    d) successor

7    a) dwellers    b) tenants    c) inhabitants    d) public

8    a) different    b) variety    c) types    d) diversity

9    a) crucial    b) important    c) major    d) vital

10    a) cars    b) planes    c) motor-boats    d) ships

11    a) natural    b) pure    c) native    d) creation

12    a) offshore    b) inshore    c) shore    d) coast


Exercise Two


Trinity College was 1) ___________ by Sir Thomas Pope in 1555. A devout catholic with no surviving children, Thomas Pope saw the Foundation of an Oxford college as a means of 2) ___________that he and his family would always be remembered in the prayers and masses of its members. He came from a family of small 3) _____________ in Oxfordshire, trained as a lawyer, and rose rapidly to prominence 4) ____________ Henry VIII. As Treasurer of the Court of Augmentations he handled the estates of the monasteries                  5) _______________ at the Reformation, and amassed a considerable personal 6) _____________. Pope was a discreet and trusted privy counsellor of Mary Tudor, and it was from Mary and Philip that he 7) ______ Letters Patent and royal approval for his new foundation. Pope died in 1559. Although his religious 8) ______ were never fully realised - Elizabeth I had succeeded her sister and England 9) __________  to the Protestant faith - nonetheless the memory of his name, like his college, has endured the fluctuating fortunes of over 400 years. His wife, Lady Elizabeth Pope, was a particularly influential 10) ___________ in Trinity's early years. Pope's foundation was for a President, twelve Fellows and twelve scholars, all supported by the income from his 11) ______________ endowment of lands, and for up to twenty undergraduates. The Fellows, all men, were required to take Holy Orders and remain unmarried. The College Statutes set out rules for a simple monastic life of religious observance and study. The Garden was an informal grove of trees, mainly elms, amongst which the members of the College could 12) ______________ and meditate.

1    a) founded    b) set    c) begin    d)starting

2    a) securing     b) ensuring    c) clinching    d) verifying

3    a) owners    b) landowners    c) freeholders    d) mistresses

4    a) with     b) on        c) under    d) because

5     a) dissolved    b) disintegrated    c) crumbled    d) withered

6    a) fortune    b) wealth    b) rich    d) money

7    a) inherited    b) conferred    b) received    d) excepted

8    a) ideals    b) examples    c) belief    d) value

9    a) rejoined    b) repeated    c) returned    d) reinstated

10    a) outline    b) symbol    c) shape    d) figure

11    a) generous    b) generosity     c) bounty    d) teeming 

12    a) prowl    b) walk    c) promenade    d) yomp



1) a) founded 2) b) ensuring 3) b) landowners 4) c) under 5) a) dissolved 6) a) fortune 7) b) received 8) a) ideals 9) c) returned              10) d) figure    11) a) generous 12) b) walk


Exercise Three

Mulligatawny Soup

This is a recipe that would have been 1) ___________ to all Britons living and working in the Imperial Raj. Indeed the 2) ___________ of Indian cooks, British tastes and exotic foods have made a lasting 3) ________ on British cuisine right down to the present day. New, strange and exciting ingredients would be used to           4) ___________ and recreate familiar, edible and nutritious meals befitting the 5) __________ class that they had become. Lack of refrigeration, a hot and humid climate and unfamiliar cooking facilities would all 6) _____ to make cooking an even more 7) ___________ prospect than it already would have been. However, the results of these intrepid culinary explorers could often be an interesting 8) ___________ of East meets West.

Two and half pints of stock
7 oz coconut cream, cut into chunks
1 heaped teaspoon each ground cumin and coriander
1 teaspoon chilli powder (flat or heaped)
1 small tin tomato puree

Flavouring Ingredients
1-2 onions, chopped and fried in butter until brown
2 tablespoons chutney juice
a few cardamom seeds, lightly crushed
salt and freshly ground pepper

Simmer all the basic soup ingredients 9) __________ for 15 minutes, then add all of any of the flavouring ingredients to make the soup exactly as you like it. 10) _______________ hot with bread.

1    a) familiar    b) recognized    c) renowned    d) noted

2     a) merger    b) unite    c) combination    d) coalition

3    a) impression    b) perception    c) verdict    d) opinion

4    a) attempt    b) try    c) seek    d) trial

5    a) general    b) widespread    c) ruling    d)  dominate

6    a) colluded    b) accessory    c) conspire    d) plan

7 a) exhausted    b) mysterious    c) enigmatic    d) difficult

8    a) add    b) combine    c) addition    d) mix

9    a)  together    b) cooperation    b) unison    d) concurrent

10    a) serve    b) give    c) accept    d) spoon



  1 (a)    2 (c)    3 (a)    4 (b)    5 (c)    6 (c)    7 (d)    8 (d)    9 (a)    10 (a)


Exercise Four

English in Europe

English has without a 1) ______________ become the second language of Europe and the world. European countries which have most 2) ______________ assimilated English into daily life are England's neighbours in Northern Europe: Ireland, the Netherlands, Sweden, Norway, and the 3)____________ of Scandanavia. 

The situation is so 4) ______________ that any visitor to the Netherlands will soon be 5) ______ of the pressure of English on daily life: television, radio and print 6) __________ it into every home and the schoolyard 7) _____________ of children; advertisers use it to 8) __________ up their message, journalists take refuge in it when their home-bred skills 9) ___________ them. Increasingly one hears the 10) ______________ that Dutch will give way to English as the national tongue within two or three generations ...

1    a) question    b) doubt    c) problem   d) thought

2    a) successfully    b) victorious    c) successful    d) lucrative

3    a) rest    b) additional    c) remaining    d) extra

4    a) plain    b) open    c) blatant    d) marked

5    a) ignorant    b) aware     c) oblivious    d) acquainted

6    a) guide    b) bring    c) shift    d) haul

7    a) conversation    b) head-to-head    c) consultation    d) dialogue

8    a) life    b) energy    c) enthusiasm    d) pep

9    a) succeed    b) fall    c) fail    d) fizzle

10    a) feeling    b) posture    c) judgement    d) view  



1 (b)    2 (a)    3 (a)    4 (d)    5 (b)    6 (b)    7 (a)    8 (d)    9 (c)    10 (d)