A closer look 說古論今
Maldives may be small, but throughout its history, it has been a more important country than its size would suggest. A long time ago, traders used to visit Maldives because special shells found on the islands, called cowry shells, were used as money in Asia and some parts of Africa. Not only was Maldives a source of money, it was also in an important location, right on some of the main shipping routes in the Indian Ocean.
As a result, Maldives has always attracted attention from larger and more powerful countries. The Portuguese first took control of the islands in 1558, but were later driven out by a revolt. After that, the Dutch and British set up bases on the islands, although they let the the Maldivians rule themselves. Maldives finally gained full independence in 1965.
The economy is centered around fishing and tourism. The tourist hotels are located on seperate islands, but contact between visitors and citizens is discouraged. Because of this, many tourists don't get to experience Maldivian culture, which comes from a mixture of the cultures of the Indian, Sri Lankan, Arab and African immigrants that have settled on the islands. The country is almost entirely Islamic, and because of its isolation from mainstream Islam, many of the people's religious beliefs have been preserved from ancient Islam. According to the statistics, Maldivies has the highest divorce rate in the world. (Taipei Times)
1.The hikers were in a precarious situation when they ran out of food 100km from the nearest town.
Precarious means ...
c. risky, dangerous.
d. unbelievable, crazy.
2. There was a revolt after the king raised taxes for the poor and lowered them for the rich.
A revolt is ...
a. anger over unfair taxes.
b. unhappiness among the people.
c. an attempt to get rid of the government.
d. a new policy or law that people don't like.
3.That country has tried to preserve its culture by not letting any foreigners live there.
To preserve something is to ...
a. keep it the same.
b. share it with other people.
c. not let anyone else see it.
d. keep it a secret.
4. Some of the rainwater goes into the rivers and some of it seeps into the ground.
if something seeps, it
a. dries up.
b. moves into something slowly.
c. flows away into a larger body of water.
d. becomes polluted.
Ans: 1.c 2.c 3.a 4.b
DO YOU KNOW？ 你知道嗎？
Maldives is the flattest country in the world. The highest point on any of the islands is only 2.4m above sea level, and the average height of all the islands is 1.8m. Because the Maldivian islands are just barely poking out of the water, many people worry that if global warming continues and sea levels continue to rise (they have risen 20cm in the last 100 years), Maldives could become completely submerged. The low elevation also affects farming on the islands. Because there is so much salt in the earth from the ocean's salt water, only plants that can tolerate salty soil, like banana and coconut trees, can be grown on the island. It can also be hard to dig wells for drinking water because the salty sea water can seep into the wells.