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# The two construction periods at Aztec, New Mexico as

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The two construction periods at Aztec, New Mexico as  [#permalink]

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24 Jun 2018, 22:25
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The two construction periods at Aztec, New Mexico as indicated by the modern tree-ring dating are corroborated nicely by other evidence found by archaeologist Earl H. Morris in the 1920’s that Aztec actually was built by one group of people, abandoned, and then reoccupied at a later date by a slightly different group of people.Throughout all the rooms he dug during his early 20th century excavations, Morris found sterile layers of windblown sand and ruined debris from falling walls and ceilings.In this debris and under the sand, he found Chaco-like pottery and artifacts.In addition there were surprisingly few burial sites.Even today, archeologists have located few Chaco-type burials in Chaco Canyon itself.Whatever the burial customs of the Chaco people may have been, they have eluded archeologists for many decades.The absence of burials of this period at Aztec is a clue that probably a group of Chaco-like people, bearing the distinctive Chaco culture, may actually have moved into the Aztec area.

Granting that the local sandstone was not quite as easily worked as that at Chaco, the large-size rooms, the high ceilings, the banded-veneer masonry walls, the large doorways, and other techniques used were very similar to the architectural techniques of the Chaco area.Overlying the Chaco debris and sterile sand layers, Morris found pottery, household utensils, and burials characteristic of the classic Mesa Verde Period—a period which occurred later than the great Chaco Period.In addition, there were obvious architectural signs of rebuilding and remodeling within the pueblo.Large Chaco-type rooms had been made smaller by wattle-and-daub partition walls, while doorways had been shortened and narrowed more like the ones at Mesa Verde.Thus there were two definite periods of occupation at Aztec, one by a Chaco-like people and one by a Mesa Verde-type people.

1. The author of the passage likely mentions both Morris and the tree-ring dates in order to
A. Explain how both natural and man-made evidence contributes to debunking a myth about a particular site.
B. Describe how the later remodeling of Aztec was in the Mesa Verde-style.
C. Challenge the idea that the Mesa Verde people preceded the Chaco people at Aztec.
D. Bolster his/her own argument through both recently discovered and historical evidence.
E. Prove that only the Chaco and Mesa Verde people lived at Aztec.

A. Incorrect: Irrelevant
This is out of scope. The author is not concerned with the different types of evidence, and there is no mention of any kind of any myth related to the Aztec, New Mexico, site.
B. Incorrect: Inconsistent
This is a misused detail from the passage. In fact, there is no mention of this style in the first paragraph.
C. Incorrect: Out of Context
The passage does not suggest anyone is making such a claim.
D. Correct
Ask yourself: why would the author mention both “modern” tree-rings and Morris’ work from the 1920’s? Likely to give a broad range of evidence, both historical and contemporary, to support his/her theory.
E. Incorrect: Out of Context
We do not know if the Chaco and the Mesa Verde were the “only” groups to live at Aztec. There could have been more. This is outside the scope of the passage.

2. The author is primarily concerned with
A. Refuting a misconception with specific support
B. Describing the findings of an archaeologist with whom the author partially agrees
C. Stating a theory and providing support for it
D. Reframing the timeline for the habitation of a historical site
E. Arguing for the existence of different cultures

The first paragraph presents ample details to show that Aztec was inhabited by Chaco people. In the last paragraph, the author reiterates that Chaco people live in Aztec which was later occupied by Mesa Verde people. So the author is primarily concerned with presenting evidence that two groups of people lived in Aztec in two different times.

A. Incorrect: Out of Context
No misconception is presented here. The author does not state that some people believe Aztec was inhabited by only one culture.

B. Incorrect: Inconsistent
Firstly, the author does more than just describe the findings of Morris. The author proposes his/her own argument about the Chaco and Mesa Verde style, using evidence cited by Morris. Secondly, there is no reason for us to believe that the author only “partially” agrees with Morris or his findings.

C.Correct
In the first sentence of the passage, the author states a thesis: “Aztec actually was built by one group of people, abandoned, and then reoccupied at a later date by a slightly different group of people.” He then goes on to support this thesis with specific evidence proving the existence of both the Chaco and Mesa Verde people at Aztec.

D.Incorrect: Out Of Scope
The author is merely providing the evidence that suggests two cultures inhabited Aztec. He does not appear overly concerned with emphasizing that Mesa Verde came first and Chaco second.

E. Incorrect: Out of Context
The author is not concerned with proving that the Chaco and the Mesa Verde “existed.” This seems like a foregone conclusion. Rather, his/her aim is to show they both inhabited the same site (Aztec, New Mexico) at different periods of time.

3. Which of the following is implied about the Aztec site?
A. It was not extensively excavated until the 1920’s.
B. Its population was a mix of Chaco and Mesa Verde peoples.
C. Aztec was uninhabited by the end of the Mesa Verde period.
D. The Mesa Verde people did not take most of their possessions with them when they abandoned the site.
E. The Aztec site excavated under Morris was expected to have more burial sites than found.

A. Incorrect: Out Of Context
We know that Morris found significant evidence that both a Chaco-like culture and Mesa Verde-like culture inhabited the site, but we do not know whether the site had undergone previous extensive excavations.

B.Incorrect: Opposite
The passage implies these two groups inhabited Aztec at different times. This option suggests they cohabitated, and this is contradicted by the discussion of remodeling and separate architectural styles between the two cultures.

C. Incorrect: Out Of Scope
Though we know from the passage it is likely Aztec was inhabited DURING the Mesa Verde period, we do not know when it was abandoned.

D.Incorrect: Inconsistent
Simply because “some” utensils and pottery were found from the Mesa Verde period is not enough evidence to claim that these people abandoned “most” of their possessions upon leaving Aztec. This choice is too extreme.

E. Correct
The passage states, “In addition there were surprisingly few burial sites.” Clearly, the author suggests that the number of burial sites was lower than what was expected.

4. Which of the following can be inferred from the passage?
A. The pottery belonging to the Chaco period was distinctively different from that belonging to the Mesa Verde period.
B. The Chaco people died out before the Mesa Verde people did.
C. The dwellings of the Chaco Canyon were more intimate in size than those of the Mesa Verde people.
D. The burial customs of the Mesa Verde people are also unknown.
E. The Aztec people never actually lived in Aztec, New Mexico.

A. Correct
Overlying the Chaco debris and sterile sand layers, Morris found pottery, household utensils, and burials “characteristic” of the classic Mesa Verde Period
The word “characteristic” indicates that this pottery was distinctly different, especially since it was overlying the Chaco debris.

B. Incorrect: Out Of Scope
Based on the evidence from the passage, we know the Chaco-like people likely inhabited Aztec, NM before the Mesa Verde-like people, but it is too extreme to infer that this is because the Chaco-like people died out. They may simply have abandoned the site sometime before the Mesa Verde-like people took over it.

C. Incorrect: Opposite
The passage describes the Chaco-style rooms as large with high ceilings and big doorways. Subsequently, it describes the Mesa Verde remodels as having smaller rooms with more partitions and smaller doorways, which could be inferred as more “intimate” in size. This choice is opposite of what is supported by the passage.

D. Incorrect: Opposite
Though there were few burials discovered at Aztec and Chaco Canyon, Morris did find some typical of the Mesa Verde style. So it’s more likely that the burial customs of the Mesa Verde people are at least partially known.

E. Incorrect: Out Of Scope
The Aztec people are not discussed in the passage. The passage focuses only on the Chaco and Mesa Verde people. The name “Aztec” could have come much later.

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Re: The two construction periods at Aztec, New Mexico as  [#permalink]

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25 Jun 2018, 02:21
Can you explain how can we infer option A for question 4. I marked D, that also seems wrong.

QZ
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The two construction periods at Aztec, New Mexico as  [#permalink]

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25 Jun 2018, 08:19
QZ wrote:
Can you explain how can we infer option A for question 4. I marked D, that also seems wrong.

QZ

I struggled with the very same question.

I guess the explanation is in this sentence
Quote:
Overlying the Chaco debris and sterile sand layers, Morris found pottery, household utensils, and burials characteristic of the classic Mesa Verde Period—a period which occurred later than the great Chaco Period

If pottery was characteristic for this period it is likely that it differed from the pottery that was characteristic for the Chaco period. I'm not sure whether we can safely conclude that it was distinctively different but this is the best explanation I found. This resembles answer A.
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The two construction periods at Aztec, New Mexico as  [#permalink]

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25 Jun 2018, 09:14
Time: 11:15
Result: 1 out of 4 incorrect
Questions:
1. What's the expected timing on this passage? What's the difficulty level?
2. For question #1, I was debating between A and D and ended up picking A. I got caught up by the wording. Couldn't 3-ring dates considered man-made evidence? What's the best strategy to identify irrelevant components in the answer choices, i.e. "myth" in choice A?
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Re: The two construction periods at Aztec, New Mexico as  [#permalink]

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28 Jun 2018, 23:16
doubleting wrote:
Time: 11:15
Result: 1 out of 4 incorrect
Questions:
1. What's the expected timing on this passage? What's the difficulty level?
2. For question #1, I was debating between A and D and ended up picking A. I got caught up by the wording. Couldn't 3-ring dates considered man-made evidence? What's the best strategy to identify irrelevant components in the answer choices, i.e. "myth" in choice A?

Time: 8:30 min
All correct.
I too would like to know the expected timing on this passage.
Thanks.
Intern
Joined: 31 Mar 2018
Posts: 24
Re: The two construction periods at Aztec, New Mexico as  [#permalink]

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29 Jun 2018, 00:24
16:00 minutes..
2 wrong and 2 right
Re: The two construction periods at Aztec, New Mexico as &nbs [#permalink] 29 Jun 2018, 00:24
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