How fire was born from a single spark and a piece of flint - an IELTS reading practice test

2023-01-30 02:06:59 - Grace Browns Grace Browns has been a lifestyle, fashion, and beauty writer for over 5 years, and she currently serves as a senior editor at
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Humanity's mastery of fire was the first, and arguably greatest, step toward a technology that would improve their quality of life.

Ancient man relied heavily on fire as a divine a gift that could be a bolt of lightning, a forest fire, or a river of molten lava Unable The first humans probably learned how to make fire stored fire by tending to a blaze with smoldering logs or by transporting charcoal in cans.

It's not known when or where humans first discovered how to control fire. It was most likely a derivative creation. accidentally developed through the process of carving a wooden or stone tool Archaeological evidence and analyses of prehistoric societies point to the use of friction Historically, European farmers would place a wooden drill into a spherical hole and rotate it rapidly between their palms To hasten the procedure, one could tie a cord around the drill and pull on both ends

The Aztecs of Mexico and the Chinese used burning glasses similar to those used by the Ancient Greeks, which focused the sun's rays.

Percussion Some Stone Age toolmakers figured out that chipping flints created sparks that could be used to light a fire, and this practice has been around since the Paleolithic era. After the iron was discovered in Arctic North America around 5000 years ago, the technique became more efficient. Eskimos striking quartz with iron pyrites, a compound containing sulphur, produced a spark that burned slowly. The Chinese would strike porcelain with bamboo to start fires. Prior to the middle of the nineteenth century, steel, flint, and tinder were the standard fire-starting tools across Europe.

Phosphorus, first isolated in 1669, completely changed the way humans light fires. in an attempt to turn silver into gold by a German alchemist Several chemists in the seventeenth century, impressed by the element's combustibility, attempted to create fire-lighting devices out of it, but the results were extremely flammable. The first matches were pricey because of the high cost of phosphorus (several hundred pounds per ounce).

After a team of French chemists developed the Phosphoric Candle, also known as the "practical match," in 1781, the search for a viable alternative to fire truly got under way. Harmony in the Clouds , a sealed glass tube including a phosphorus-tipped paper twist The phosphorus ignited on its own once the tube was broken and air was allowed to enter. The Instantaneous Light Box was an even riskier tool used widely in the United States; it was essentially a bottle of sulphuric acid into which chemically treated splints were dipped.

The earliest examples of what would become modern matches was an English pharmacist named John Walker who, in 1827, used a formula he had stolen from a military Manufacturer of rockets has called Congreve Congreves, which sold for one shilling per box, were splints doused in sulphur and tipped with potassium chlorate. The user swiftly drew them through the folded glass paper to ignite them.

Unfortunately, Walker didn't file a patent for his creation until three years after it was first used. copied by a man named Samuel Jones, who sold them under the name "Lucifers." A French chemistry student named Charles Sauria around the same time produced first ever "strike anywhere" contest using the Walker formula with white phosphorus in place of the potassium chlorate Necrosis, a disease that eats away at jaw-bones, began killing match-makers in 1845 after they were exposed to the fumes of white phosphorus, a deadly poison. The substance wasn't outright prohibited until 1906.  

In 1885, J E Lundstrom, a Swedish chemist and colleague of Pasch's, commercially exploited Pasch's discovery of non-toxic red or amorphous phosphorus, a development that had been made possible 62 years earlier by Pasch. Red phosphorus, which was used in Lundstrom's safety matches, was non-toxic. Potassium chlorate, which has a high ignition temperature of 182 degrees Celsius, was painted onto the striking surface instead of used in the match tip.

The United States lagged behind European countries in terms of technology and safety standards. In 1900, the Diamond Match Company acquired the rights to a French patent for safety matches; however, the formula did not perform adequately in the different climatic conditions prevailing in America, and it took scientists another 11 years to adapt the French patent for the US market.

However, the United States can boast a number of technological and promotional "firsts" Book matches were first manufactured by the Diamond Match Company in 1892. It wasn't until a brewery implemented the change in 1896 that it became widely used. promotion in match books, a novel marketing strategy Ninety percent of all book matches in the United States are distributed for free by businesses like hotels, restaurants, and more.

The American invention of the waterproof match, which will ignite eight hours after being submerged in water, and the anti-after-glow solution to prevent the match from continuing to burn after being struck are two more examples.

Just fill in the blanks in the summary Select the appropriate options from the drop-down menu and record your answers in boxes 1–8.

Please note that there are more words than spaces, so you will not be able to fit them all into your answer. However, you are free to use any of the words more than once.


Fire was revered by ancient peoples because it was believed to be a (Example) gift Heavenly, of course!

Despite the fact that the Eskimos and Mexicans both tried to make fire without the use of logs or charcoal, they both ended up succeeding by sheer luck.

Three chances despite EskimosfrictionheatingheavenlylackingmakeMexicanspercussionpreserverandomrealisingrotatingsmokesunlightsurprisedunawareuntilwithout are thought to have led to the creation of the first man-made flames.

Some of the earliest known methods of lighting a fire included the development of tools such as the four chancedespiteEskimosfrictionheatingheavenlylackingmakeMexicanspercussionpreserverandomrealisingrotatingsmokesunlightsurpriseunawareuntilwithout by Rapidly five chances despite Eskimo friction heating heavenly lack making Mexican percussion preserving random realizing rotating smoking surprised unaware until without a round hole and a wooden stick.

In addition to the Chinese and the Eskimos, people all over Europe and elsewhere frequently resorted to 6 chancedespiteEskimosfrictionheatingheavenlylackingmakeMexicanspercussionpreserverandomrealisingrotatingsmokesunlightsurprisedunawareuntilwithout or persistent chipping. chancedespiteEskimosfrictionheatingheavenlylackingmakeMexicanspercussionpreserverandomrealisingrotatingsmokesunlightsurprisedunawareuntilwithout 

After the discovery of phosphorus, this technique was still widely used in Europe until the 1850s.


Words and Phrases























Preserve is the correct answer for 1.     Locate
Two, I was not aware     Locate
Response: luck     Locate
Correct response: friction     Locate
5 - Answer: in a circular motion     Locate
The correct answer is: percussion     Locate
Eskimos! (#7)     Locate
Contrary to (number 8)     Locate

Check out these jotted-down thoughts on the matches mentioned in the Reading Passage. Circle the letter(s) that best describes each matching set and enter your answers (A-H) in boxes 9-15.

Note that you won't be able to use every matching description because there are too many.
You can strike it with any match you like. several times



able to be ignited after being soaked in water


Variety of Pairings

The Perfect Spiritual Complement

Rapid Illumination Device B

Author: C. Congreves

D Luciferians

A the first ever winner-take-all contest

M Lundstrom's defensive pairing

Bookies' Gs

Matches that are impervious to water, or "H


The letters ABCDEFGH were created with a safer form of phosphorus, and there were 9.
Answer: F Locate

Ten letters A through G that are an exact match to the ones used in an earlier type of game:
Answer: D     Locate

The fatal illness was brought on by the letters ABCDEFGH, which total 11.
Answer: E     Locate

The first 12 letters, ABCDEFG, resemble contemporary matches.
Answer: C     Locate

Thirteen ad pitches using the letters ABCDEFGH
Answer: G     Locate

A group of 14 A-B-C-D-E-F-G-H used a sealed glass jar.
Answer: A     Locate

Armed forces design was used to create these 15 ABCDEFG.
Answer: C     Locate

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