It's hard to find artifacts that are genuinely American, but the present day banjo may be one of them. Even though its ancestry is African, the modern banjo is nothing like the early instruments first brought by Africans to the southern plantations. In the nineteenth century 5 the banjo was a standard instrument in minstrel shows, and, as it continued to be used, it was changed in various ways. Machined pegs were added for precise tuning, frets were added for better intonation, and vellum heads were added to improve the tension. The number of strings also continued to change. Early banjos had four strings, 10 while later models had as many as nine. In the late 1800s, the five-string banjo was developed, a model that had a small unfretted drone string that was played with the thumb. This was the instrument that country singer Earl Scruggs played, and was the type used to produce that great style of music known as American bluegrass.
15 In the 1920s, the four-string tenor banjo made a remarkable comeback, as banjo bands became popular in schools and clubs from coast to coast. Again in the 1960s there was a renewed interest in folk and country music that brought the banjo back into the forefront of American 20 music. It's an American instrument that continues to live on.
1. What does this passage mainly discuss?
2. The banjo originally came from
3. The word "plantations" in line 4 most probably refers to
4. Which of the following words is most similar to the word "pegs" in line 6?
5. The word "precise" in line 7 could best be replaced by which of the following?
6. According to the passage, all of the following are true of the five-string banjo EXCEPT:
7. Which of the following is most similar to the meaning of "comeback" in line 16?
8. The word "renewed" in line 18 could be best replaced by which of the following?
9. Which of the following means most nearly the same as the word "forefront" as used in line 19?
10. Which of the following best indicates the author's attitude toward the banjo?
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