GRE® Verbal Practice | Sentence Equivalence Q6

Trigger Words | Innocuous, Portentous, Propitious, Amiss, Auspicious, and Ingenuous

This is an interesting sentence equivalence question that deals with the use of the word "Even though". The sentence is about the history of Ferdinand Magellan, a Portuguese explorer in the 1520s. Try the question without looking at the answer explanation. If you face difficulty in arriving at the correct answer, take help from the detailed explanation provided below.

Question 6: Even though Magellan would eventually die on his ambitious cruise around the world, nothing was ______ on the morning of his departure from his home port.

  1. innocuous
  2. portentous
  3. propitious
  4. amiss
  5. auspicious
  6. ingenuous

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Explanatory Answer

Meanings for the words given in this question are provided in the table. Before going through the detailed explanation, check whether you are able to arrive at the answer after knowing meanings for the words.

S No. Word Meaning
1 Innocuous Harmless
2 Portentous Of great significance, usually bad. Foreboding
3 Propitious Favorable
4 Amiss Wrong. Improper
5 Auspicious Promising. Favorable
6 Ingenuous Naive and innocent

Let us begin by focusing on the keyword, which in this sentence is “even though”. “Even though” indicates that there is a contrast between the first part (which informs us that Magellan died), and the second part (nothing was ___ on the day of the departure). Even though means “regardless of -”.

If we have to construct this sentence using simple words, we might say for example - “even though Magellan would die on this trip, on the first day nothing seemed to be wrong.”

So nothing seemed wrong on Day 1 of that trip. The bad things would come only later. So, the answer options have to be words that mean “wrong or bad”.

Choices B & D are the correct answers.



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