TOEFL Reading Practice Online | Q&A 006

As Philadelphia grew from a small town into a city in the first half of the eighteenth century, it became an increasingly important marketing center for a vast and growing agricultural hinterland.

Market days saw the crowded city even more crowded, as farmers from within a radius of 24 or more kilometers brought their sheep, cows, pigs, vegetables, cider, and other products for direct sale to the townspeople. The High Street Market was continuously enlarged throughout the period until 1736, when it reached from Front Street to Third. By 1745 New Market was opened on Second Street between Pine and Cedar.The next year the Callowhill Market began operation.

Along with market days, the institution of twice-yearly fairs persisted in Philadelphia even after similar trading days had been discontinued in other colonial cities. The fairs provided a

means of bringing handmade goods from outlying places to would-be buyers in the city. Linens and stockings from Germantown, for example, were popular items.

Auctions were another popular form of occasional trade. Because of the competition, retail merchants opposed these as well as the fairs. Although governmental attempts to eradicate fairs and auctions were less than successful, the ordinary course of economic development was on the merchants’ side, as increasing business specialization became the order of the day. Export merchants became differentiated from their importing counterparts, and specialty shops began to appear in addition to general stores selling a variety of goods.

One of the reasons Philadelphia’s merchants generally prospered was because the surrounding area was undergoing tremendous economic and demographic growth. They did their business,after all, in the capital city of the province. Not only did they cater to the governor and his circle,but citizens from all over the colony came to the capital for legislative sessions of the assembly and council and the meetings of the courts of justice.


1. What does the passage mainly discuss?

(A) Philadelphia’s agriculture importance

(B) Philadelphia’s development as a marketing center

(C) The sale of imported goods in Philadelphia

(D) The administration of the city of Philadelphia

2. It can be inferred from the passage that new markets opened in Philadelphia because

(A) they provided more modem facilities than older markets

(B) the High Street Market was forced to close

(C) existing markets were unable to serve the growing population

(D) farmers wanted markets that were closer to the farms.

3. The word “hinterland ” in line 3 is closest in meaning to

(A) tradition

(B) association

(C) produce

(D) region

4. The word “it” in line 6 refers to

(A) the crowded city

(B) a radius

(C) the High Street Market

(D) the period

5. The word “persisted” in line 9 is closest in meaning to

(A) returned

(B) started

(C) declined

(D) continued

6.According to the passage , fairs in Philadelphia were held

(A) on the same day as market says

(B) as often as possible

(C) a couple of times a year

(D) whenever the government allowed it

7. It can be inferred that the author mentions “Linens and stockings” in line 12 to show that they were items that

(A) retail merchants were not willing to sell

(B) were not available in the stores in Philadelphia

(C) were more popular in Germantown man in Philadelphia

(D) could easily be transported

8. The word “eradicate” in line 15 is closest in meaning to

(A) eliminate

(B) exploit

(C) organize

(D) operate

9. What does the author mean by stating in lines 15-16 that “economic development was on the merchants’ side “?

(A) Merchants had a strong impact on economic expansion.

(B) Economic forces allowed merchants to prosper.

(C) Merchants had to work together to achieve economic independence

(D) Specialty shops near large markets were more likely to be economically successful.

10. The word “undergoing” in line 21 is closest in meaning to

(A) requesting

(B) experiencing

(C) repeating

(D) including



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