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No one would have believed in the last years of the nineteenth century that people of this world were being watched by intelligences greater than ours. With infinite complacency, people of the earth were busy with their daily affairs. Many scientists fancied there might be other creatures on Mars, perhaps inferior to us and ready to welcome us when we reach there. Yet across the space, there was another intelligent life. They had vast intellect but were very unsympathetic. They regarded this earth with envious eyes, and drew their plans against us. Early in the twentieth century came the great disillusionment.

The planet Mars revolves about the sun at a mean distance of 140,000,000 miles. The light and heat it receives from the sun is barely half of that received by this world. It must be, if the nebular hypothesis has any truth, older than our world. Long before this earth ceased to be molten, life upon its surface must have begun its course. The fact that it is scarcely one seventh of the volume of the earth, it must have accelerated its cooling to the temperature at which life could begin. It has air, water, and all that is necessary for the support of animated existence.

Yet no writer, up to the very end of the nineteenth century, expressed any idea that intelligent life might have developed there. Nor was it understood that since Mars is older than our earth it not only has life started earlier but also ending soon as well. The perpetual cooling has already gone far with our neighbor. Its air is much more attenuated than the air on the earth, its oceans have shrunk and only cover a third of its surface. That last stage of exhaustion, which to us is still incredibly remote, has become a present day problem for the inhabitants of Mars. The immediate pressure of necessity has brightened their intellects, enlarged their powers, and hardened their hearts.

Looking across space with instruments the Martians see, at its nearest distance only 35,000,000 of miles sunward of them, a morning star of hope. Their hope is our own warmer planet earth, green with vegetation and grey with water, with a cloudy atmosphere eloquent of fertility. Their world is far gone in its cooling and is dying. They see that earth is still crowded with life, but crowded only with what they regard as inferior animals. To invade earth is their only escape from the destruction that creeps upon them because of planet cooling.

The Martians seem to have calculated their descent with amazing subtlety and to have carried out their preparations with a perfect unanimity. Had our telescopic and radar instruments permitted it, we might have seen the gathering trouble far back in the nineteenth century. Men like Schiaparelli watched the red planet but failed to interpret the fluctuating appearances of the markings they mapped so well. All that time the Martians must have been getting ready. During the opposition of 1894 a great light was seen on the illuminated part of the Mars, first at the Lick Observatory, then by Perrotin of Nice. English readers heard of it first in the issue of NATURE dated August 2. I think that this blaze may have been the casting of the huge gun, in the vast pit sunk into their planet, from which their shots were fired at us.
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Question 1
What did scientists think about the creatures on the mars?
A. Taller than usB. Bigger than us
C. Superior to usD. Inferior to us
Question 2
What was true about the intelligent life that was across the space?
A. They were very sympatheticB. They were very unsympathetic
C. They were happyD. They were sad
Question 3
What is the mean distance of the planet from the Sun?
A. 140,000,000 feetB. 140,000,000 miles
C. 140,000 milesD. 140,000 feet
Question 4
What does author mean by "this world", in the following sentence?

The light and heat it receives from the Sun is barely half of that received by this world. (2nd paragraph)
A. The EarthB. The Mars
C. The SunD. The Venus
Question 5
According to the 2nd paragraph, which of the following is true about the planet Mars?
A. Mars is not a planetB. Mars is a moon
C. Mars is older than the EarthD. Mars is younger than the Earth
Question 6
Who are referred as the Martians?
A. People of MarsB. People of Earth
C. Mountains of MarsD. Moons of Mars
Question 7
What instrument could have been used to see the Mars? (see last paragraph)
A. MirrorB. Telescopic and radar
C. TelevisionD. Microscope
Question 8
When did they first see a great light on the illuminated part of the Mars?
A. In 884B. In 1994
C. In 1890D. In 1894
Question 9
Where did they first see a great light on the illuminated part of the Mars?
A. At the City ObservatoryB. At the Nice
C. At the Martian ObservatoryD. At the Lick Observatory
Question 10
When did the English readers first hear about the great light in the issue of NATURE?
A. 1884B. 1890
C. August 2D. August 12
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