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Reading skills - A LEGENDARY CITY OF GOLD


Klausimas #1


A LEGENDARY CITY OF GOLD

     Gold is the sweat of the Sun. Or so the South American Chibcha Indians believed, and the 16th-century Spanish conquistadores took this to mean that the Indian's supplies of the precious metal were boundless. After discovering the huge wealth of the Aztecs and the Incas, they became convinced that even more treasure was to be found further into the interior of South America, where entire cities, entire countries of gold were just waiting to be plundered. They called the mythical place El Dorado. But in fact, El Dorado was not a city or country at all. The name originally belonged to the ruler of Colombia, an Indian town near Bogota.
 
     Tradition had it that when a new king of the Chibchas came to the throne, his tribesmen would cover him from head to toe with a mixture of sticky resin and gold dust, until he glistened magnificently, reflecting the rays of the Sun god that the tribe worshipped. Then the king would be rowed out into the middle of nearby Lake Guatavita. He would slowly remove the gold from his body and throw it into the water. At last he would dive in, washing off all the gold that remained stuck to his skin. The tribesmen would then throw yet more gold into the water. Subsequent attempts to drain the lake and recover the gold have all failed. As far as we know, the treasure is still lurking down there, an enduring testament to El Dorado, the man of gold.
     Not only the Spanish, but Germans, Portuguese, and even Queen Elizabeth's courtier Sir Walter Raleigh, made many fruitless journeys into the jungles of South America in search of the gold. Despite their failure to uncover further wealth, these explorers did help to put the continent on the map by bringing back priceless information about the geography of the land through which they travelled.
     The English poet John Milton used the myth of El Dorado in Paradise Lost in 1667; a century later, the French philosopher Voltaire used it in Candide. By then, the legend of the city that never existed was as deeply embedded in European tradition as the gold in the mud of the Colombian lake.

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Klausimas #2


A LEGENDARY CITY OF GOLD

     Gold is the sweat of the Sun. Or so the South American Chibcha Indians believed, and the 16th-century Spanish conquistadores took this to mean that the Indian's supplies of the precious metal were boundless. After discovering the huge wealth of the Aztecs and the Incas, they became convinced that even more treasure was to be found further into the interior of South America, where entire cities, entire countries of gold were just waiting to be plundered. They called the mythical place El Dorado. But in fact, El Dorado was not a city or country at all. The name originally belonged to the ruler of Colombia, an Indian town near Bogota.
 
     Tradition had it that when a new king of the Chibchas came to the throne, his tribesmen would cover him from head to toe with a mixture of sticky resin and gold dust, until he glistened magnificently, reflecting the rays of the Sun god that the tribe worshipped. Then the king would be rowed out into the middle of nearby Lake Guatavita. He would slowly remove the gold from his body and throw it into the water. At last he would dive in, washing off all the gold that remained stuck to his skin. The tribesmen would then throw yet more gold into the water. Subsequent attempts to drain the lake and recover the gold have all failed. As far as we know, the treasure is still lurking down there, an enduring testament to El Dorado, the man of gold.
     Not only the Spanish, but Germans, Portuguese, and even Queen Elizabeth's courtier Sir Walter Raleigh, made many fruitless journeys into the jungles of South America in search of the gold. Despite their failure to uncover further wealth, these explorers did help to put the continent on the map by bringing back priceless information about the geography of the land through which they travelled.
     The English poet John Milton used the myth of El Dorado in Paradise Lost in 1667; a century later, the French philosopher Voltaire used it in Candide. By then, the legend of the city that never existed was as deeply embedded in European tradition as the gold in the mud of the Colombian lake.

Which statements are true (YES) and which are false (NO)?

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