CAE Reading and Use of English Practice Test 3 Printable -
CAE Reading and Use of English Practice Test 3 Printable and PDF version

CAE Reading and Use of English Practice Test 3 Printable

CAE Reading and Use of English Part 8

You are going to read an article about various paintings. For questions 47-56, choose from the sections of the article (A-D). The sections may be chosen more than once.

Of which painting is the following stated?

47 It is of something that no longer exists.
48 The artist points out that it is based on things actually observed, even though it doesn’t depict them accurately.
49 The artist specialises in things that most people regard as ugly.
50 A deduction that could be made about what is happening in this picture is not what artist is actually showing.
51 The artist took a risk while creating it.
52 The artist checks that nothing important is missing from preparatory work.
53 It was completely altered in order to produce various connections.
54 Its artist produces paintings in different locations.
55 In one way, it is unlike any other painting the artist has produced.
56 The artist likes to find by chance subjects that have certain characteristics.

Watercolour competition

First prize

A Carol Robertson – Interrupted
Field Carol Robertson’s Interrupted Field is a worthy winner, a more or less geometric composition that exploits the qualities of evenly-applied washes of colour. The painting is vast – ‘the largest I’ve ever attempted’- so the big, even area of blue in the centre is, apart from anything else, something of a technical achievement.

Robertson is keen to stress that her abstract compositions are firmly rooted in reality. Though she does not ‘seek to confirm or record the way the world looks’, her work is never disconnected from the natural world, so the coloured stripes and bands in this painting have a specific source. Over the past five years, Robertson has been working in Ireland, on the northwest coast of County Mayo. The coloured stripes stimulate ‘memories of coastal landscape, brightly painted cottages, harbours and fishing boats, things seen out of the corner of my eye as I explored that coastline by car and on foot. The colour mirrors the fragments of life that caught my eye against a background of sea and sky.’

Runners up

В Geoffrey Wynne – Quayside
Geoffrey Wynne describes himself as ‘an open-air impressionist watercolour painter’, though he adds that ‘larger works’, this prize-winning picture among them, ‘are developed in the studio’.

Perhaps the most noteworthy aspect of this painting is the sheer number of people in it. According to the title, they are on a quay somewhere, and the number of suitcases they have with them suggests they have just landed from a boat on the first stage of a holiday. ‘Yes, that’s almost right,’ Wynne told me, ‘except that we’re on the boat in the early morning, just arrived back from Mallorca, and the people are waiting to get on. This painting took a long time to finish, and many earlier attempts were abandoned. To achieve a unity, I immersed the half-finished painting in the bath, then added the black with a big brush. It’s dangerous to do, because you can’t really control the effects. Then I reworked everything, establishing links with colour and tone throughout the composition, creating a kind of web or net of similar effects.’

C Arthur Lockwood – Carbonizer Tower
Arthur Lockwood has a big reputation among watercolour painters and watercolour enthusiasts, chiefly for his accomplished pictures of industrial sites, subjects that are generally thought to be unsightly, but have striking visual qualities all their own. Among them is a kind of romanticism stimulated by indications of decay and the passing of irrecoverable time. Lockwood’s subjects are, after all, ruins, the modern equivalent of Gothic churches overgrown by ivy. He aims not only to reveal those qualities, but to make a visual record of places that are last being destroyed.

This painting, a good example of his work in general, is one of an extensive series on the same subject. What we see is part of a large industrial plant that once made smokeless coal briquettes. It has now been closed and demolished to make way for a business park.

D Michael Smee – Respite at The Royal Oak
Michael Smee was once a successful stage and television designer. This is worth stressing, because this prize-winning painting makes a strong theatrical impression. Smee agrees, and thinks it has much to do with the carefully judged lighting. ‘As a theatre designer, you make the set, which comes to life only when its lit’.

Smee prefers to happen on pubs and cafes that are intriguing visually and look as though they might be under threat, lie has a strong desire to record ‘not only the disappearing pub culture peculiar to this country, but also bespoke bar interiors and the individuals therein’, He works his paintings up from informative sketches. ‘I get there early, before many people have arrived, sit in the corner and scribble away. Then, once the painting is in progress in the studio, I make a return visit to reassure myself and to note down what I’d previously overlooked.’ His main aim isn’t topographical accuracy, however; it’s to capture the appearance of artificial and natural light together, as well as the reflections they make.

Answer Keys


1 C — hit. To hit on, also used as to hit upon means to find something by chance, to discover something unexpectedly. The idea can dawn on you, the idea can also cross your mind, however we cant use them here because of surrounding words.
2 B — forerunner. Forerunner is a person or thing that comes first and then something else follows. Also known as precursor. Pioneer here isnt good enough because it doesnt imply that something else came after it.
3 D — inspired. To inspire is to make someone do something by positive means. For example a writer needs inspiration to produce a good work. This inspiration can be anything — a friend, a place he likes, his favourite food or drink. Other suggested variants do not fit here either because of meaning or context.
4 A — breakthrough. It means that some great progress was achieved or a serious obstacle overcome successfully. Leap and step arent strong enough to convey the meaning of what is talked about in the second part of the sentence. Headway implies gradual progress rather than sudden one.
5 C — stood. To stand somebody in good stead means to become useful at some point. In this case his experience of organizing an even became useful later. Other verbs do not collocate with stead here.
6 C — alone. ‘Let alone’ means much less, not no mention. It means here than not many people have been to Egypt and even fewer had the chance to travel the route that Mr. Cook was using for his tours.
7 B — going. To go back when used with time means the age of it, in this case the Egyptian civilisation. Other phrasal verbs here do not collocate with context.
8 D — world. ‘The world of …’ phrase means some area of interest, industry etc., for example The new collection by Armani changed the world of fashion, The world of chemistry was surprised by this years Nobel Prize winner. Other words do not fit as ‘The world of …’ is a set expression.


9 for. A proposal or an offer is usually used with ‘for’ preposition or with to do infinitive. We can only use the first one because of context limitations.
10 such. For such a machine here means for a machine like this one
11 of. To consist of something means to be something or be made of something. Prospective buyers for such a machine would be laboratories and government institutions.
12 were. Dont forget that we are talking about events in the past, so verb to be has to be changed accordingly.
13 to. To be here refers to the future sales. Will be is incorrect because it would need that placed before the verb.
14 other. Cant use another here because artefacts is in plural. An artefact is something made by man, as opposed to something made by nature.
15 in. In particular means especially.
16 These/Those/They. Any of these words is fine. We know we have to use plural form because of the previous sentence and auxiliary were.


17 phenomenal. The only difficulty here is spelling the word correctly. It is evident from context that you need to use an adjective in this case.
18 central. Same as the previous word, mind the spelling.
19 lasting. Lasting means ‘taking place for a long time’. ‘Latest’ is incorrect — it would imply that the film got it acclaim recently, but in truth it has always been popular.
20 unsuited. Unsuited has the meaning ‘not prepared for, not used to’. ‘Unsuitable’ is wrongas it implies thatRhettisn’t appropriate to the Hollywood star life, she isn’t fit for it. This isn’t implied by context.
21 contemporaries. A contemporary is a person that lived in the same period of time, but not necessarily of the same age.
22 producers. Keep in mind that the word has to be pluralised because it is used in conjunction with plural ‘agents’. If the word had to be in singular, it would need a definite or indefinite article.
23 signed. Don’t confuse ‘photograph’ and ‘autograph’. Second word would require a different word — ‘signing’. A signed autograph is an autograph with the person’s signature on it.
24 unanswered. Without an answer. Make sure you use the right negative prefix.


25 haven’t/have not got round to answering. ‘Get round to doing something’ means to find time or opportunity to do it. Don’t forget to use gerund form.
26 was a matter of minutes. ‘Matter of minutes/hours/years’ etc. says how much time said activity took place, can be used to denote how quick or slow something happens.
27 no doubt (that) things will get. ‘Bound to’ means ‘very likely to’. If there is no doubt about something, then the speaker is sure of it.
28 was Jake who/that got me interested. Don’t forget to capitalise proper names, if you don’t you won’t get a point for your answer even if you use the right words.
29 was desperate to give. ‘To be desperate to do something’ means that the person has strong desire to do it.
30 injury prevented him from playing. ‘To prevent’ means to stop something from happening. Mind the preposition (‘from’) and the gerund form.


31 C. One of the meanings of project is that it requires considerable effort and preparation. The following sentences describe how seriously and thoroughly Chanu prepared for his sightseeing tour. Answer A isn’t mentioned — there is nothing about a sense of duty in the text. Answer B is wrong as the first sentence clearly states that he decided to go sightseeing only after having spent 30 years in London. Answer D isn’t correct — even though Chanu made serious preparations for it, it isn’t stated that these preparations werenecessary.
32 C. The phrases used to describe his appearance are clearly used for humorous effect (shorts hanging mid-calf is clearly an exaggeration).
33 A. Last sentence of second paragraph contains the answer. ‘barely had time to lift my head’ means that he didn’t have time to go see the sights before. He regrets this fact at the beginning of the paragraph, saying that he ‘hardly left these streets’. Other answers mention insignificant details or aren’t mentioned at all (like answer B).
34 D. Paragraph 4 and beginning of Paragraph 5 have the answer. When Chanu asks them about their mood he gets mixed responses: Bibi enjoys it, Shahana seems to be bored and Chanu himself hums a melody because of his high spirits. Answer A is wrong — nothing is said about Nazneen’s attitude to the amount of food. Answer B is not correct as Shahana clearly shows her discontent, therefore she doesn’t pretend to enjoy it. Answer C is incorrect — Chanu explained why he himself came, and nothing is said about why he brought the family along.
35 B. Paragraph starting with ‘The conductor ….’. At the end of the paragraph-sentence, the conductor was considering whether to make Chanu get off the bus — he was trying to understand if he was a possible troublemaker. Answers A and C are not mentioned. Answer D relates to conductor’s question about Chanu’s home country — he asked that not because he misunderstood him, but to give better guidance.
36 B.As it was mentioned at the very beginning of this text, Chanu has spent over 30 years living in London, so the term ‘local’ (person that has been living there since birth or for a very long time) could be used to describe Chanu as well.


37 B. Sentence three says that he was too gullible (believing everything he is said too easily, without scepticism.) and the ‘questionable advice of key figures around him’ could be blamed for the damage that his policies caused. Other reviewers believe that he should be blamed personally.
38 A. Reviewer A speakers of policies that he personally championed against considerable opposition’ — meaning that many people were against these decisions. Speaker D concurs: the politician ‘carried on regardless of the inadvisability of doing so’ — people advised against continuing his policy, but he chose to do it his way.
39 A. Speaker A is the only one who believes that the politician pursued his personal interests (second part of sentence one). Other hold it that his prime motivation was to serve his own country.
40 D. Both A and D believe that the greatest feat was narrowing the gap between the poor and the rich. Speaker A mentions it in the second part of their paragraph and Speaker Dsays that at the very end: ‘he made society more equal’ and then clarifying that many ‘not so well-off’ (poor) members of that society really benefited from his policies.


41 F. Paragraph F continues the topic set by the first paragraph of that text and finishes mentioning a study, dedicated to therapeutic effects of singing in choirs. The next paragraph starts with ‘there was a specific angle to this study‘. Even though there are some paragraphs with fitting beginnings, their endings do not fit the following paragraph.
42 B.‘I take no issue’ and ‘I take no argument’ are followed one by another for emphatic (stronger) effect. At the end of Paragraph B the author complains how this information about singing is never put to good use, and the next paragraph states that there are occasional attempts to do so. Paragraph C fits well here, but it’s ending is much better used later on.
43 G. The idea of schools not willing to host such events is expanded in this and the previous paragraph. At the end of Paragraph G a ‘worthwhile singing project’ is mentioned —this is the project that starts the next paragraph — ‘Noye’s Fludde’.
44 C. The ending of Paragraph C and the beginning of next paragraph talk about the author’s one-time experience of singing in choir.
45 E. The main topic of this and the previous paragraph is access to ‘that world’ — the world of music, the world of possibilities. The health benefits are only a ‘bonus’.
46 A. This paragraph is the only one where Britten is mentioned. The singing sessions, mentioned in the paragraph above, are told here to be ‘extraordinary experience’ for all the children that participated.


47 C. Last sentence of the text. The tower had been closed and demolished (destroyed)
48 A. Second sentence of paragraph two says that the artist ‘does not seek to confirm how the world looks’. This means that the works are fairly abstract rather than objective in their nature.
49 C. First sentence of the paragraph mentions that most find the industrial sites ‘unsightly’ — not very pretty or outright ugly.
50 B. In the middle of second paragraph the author describes his own interpretation of his picture, which is rather different from other people’s.
51 B. Second paragraph, second half of it tells of how the artist had to put the painting in bathtub to achieve certain colour or artistic effect.Next sentence says that it can be dangerous because the results can’t be controlled.
52 D. In the lower part of second paragraph the artist mentions how he comes to the same cafe twice to make sure that no minor details are missing from his painting.
53 B. The last sentence of second paragraph mentions how the artist reworked everything to ‘establish links throughout the composition’.
54 B. The very first sentence says that he uses both studio and open-air locations for painting. We can’t use Paragraph A for answer even though the artist mentions exploring the coastline. This is because the question is asked in Present Simple, meaning that the artist does that on a regular basis. Paragraph A talks of an experience that is in the past.
55 A. The artist states that the painting is ‘the largest I’ve ever attempted’. It is the size of the painting that makes it different from other works of the same author.
56 D. The author looks for ‘bespoke interiors’ and individuals that attend those pubs.
PDF Click to download this CAE Reading and Use of English worksheet in PDF

2 thoughts on “CAE Reading and Use of English Practice Test 3 Printable”

  1. I wish you could print the whole test in one click and not having to save and print every page individually 🙁

  2. Hey Olaffo! Hopefully I will get to do that soon. I am ditching the ‘printfriendly’ function and instead going with PDFs. Unfortunately it takes a lot of time with the sheer number of tests available.
    [EDIT] I have added downloadable PDFs to corresponding pages, hopefully you guys will find this useful

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