SAT Reading: Sentence Completions

Sentence Completions

Select the word that best fits the meaning of the sentence as a whole.

The folks in the tiny town held Doc in high esteem because his conduct was ------- no matter what crisis he faced.

A.  irreproachable

B.  incoherent

C.  provocative

D.  pliable

E.  subtle


Knowsys Method

Always start by covering up your answer choices so that they do not distract you.  Read the sentence carefully.  If people esteem or respect Doc, then his conduct or behavior must be respectable.  Predict the word "respectable" and look down at your answer choices.

A.  Break this word down. The "ir" means "not" and the "reproachable" means "blamable."  "Blamable" would be the opposite of "respectable," so "not blamable" matches your prediction exactly.  Keep this choice.

B.  The word "cohere" means to stick, or to connect.  When you know that "in" means "not,"  you can see that this word means "not together" or confused or illogical.  These are words that rarely elicit respect, so you can eliminate this choice.

C.  This word is related to the word "provoke."  Provoking behavior is not the same as respectable behavior, so you can eliminate this choice.

D.  Pliers are useful for holding and bending different materials.  If something is "pliable," it is easily bent or flexible.  Eliminate this choice because it does not match your prediction.

E.  The Latin root "sub" means below.  Something that is subtle may be below the surface or difficult to notice at first.  Eliminate this choice because it does not match your prediction.


The correct answer is (A). 

This is a medium level question.


Words used in this SC: 

Irreproachable: blameless and unflawed

Incoherent: confused or illogical

Provocative: tending to excite or stimulate

Pliable:  flexible or yielding

Subtle: delicate, refined, or faint


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