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The Picture of Dorian Gray

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Picture Of Dorian GrayRead an extract from a novel called the picture of Dorian Gray for the B2 First Reading Part 5 which practices reading for detail, opinion, tone, purpose, main idea and the implication of the idea.

About 10 minutesStrengthening reading comprehensionCambridge English B2 First Exam

B2 First Reading Part 5 (The Picture of Dorian Gray)

For B2 First Reading Part 5, you are going to read an extract from a novel called the Picture of Dorian Gray. This exercise consists of a text with multiple-choice questions. For each question, there are four options and you have to choose one of them.

Picture Of Dorian Gray

The studio was filled with the rich smell of roses, and when the light summer wind stirred amidst the trees of the garden, there came through the open door the heavy scent of lilac. Beyond the soft sounds of the garden were the dim noises of London

In the centre of the room, clamped to an upright easel, stood the full-length portrait of a young man of extraordinary beauty, and in front of it, some little distance away, was sitting the artist himself, Basil Hallward, whose sudden disappearance some years ago had caused, at the time, such public excitement.

'It is your best work, Basil, the best thing you have ever done,' said Lord Henry lazily. 'You should send it next year to the Tate Gallery. The Academy is too large. Whenever I have gone there, there have been either so many people that I have not been able to see the pictures, which was dreadful, or so many pictures that I have not been able to see the people, which was worse. The Tate Gallery is really the only place.'

'I don't think I will send it anywhere,' he answered, tossing his head back in that odd way that used to make his friends laugh at him at Oxford. 'No, I won't send it anywhere.'

Lord Henry raised his eyebrows and looked at him in amazement. 'Not sending it anywhere? My dear friend, why? Have you any reason? What strange people you painters are! You do anything in the world to gain a reputation. As soon as you have one, you seem to want to throw it away. It is silly of you, for there is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about. A portrait like this would set you far above all the young men in England, and make the old men quite jealous if old men are ever capable of any emotion.'

'I know you will laugh at me,' he replied, 'but I really can't exhibit it. I have put too much of myself into it.'

Lord Henry stretched himself out on the sofa and laughed.

'Too much of yourself in it! I really can't see anything that looks like you, with your rugged strong face and your coal-black hair, and this young man, who looks so handsome. Of course, you have an intellectual expression and all that. I think that he is just some brainless beautiful creature who should be always here in winter when we have no flowers to look at, and always here in summer when we want something to cool our intelligence. Don't flatter yourself, Basil: you are not in the least like him.'

'You don't understand me, Harry,' answered the artist. 'Of course, I am not like him. I know that perfectly well. In fact, I prefer not to be beautiful with Dorian Gray's good looks. We shall all suffer for what the gods have given us, suffer terribly.'

'Dorian Gray? Is that his name?' asked Lord Henry, walking across the studio towards Basil Hallward.

'Yes, that is his name. I didn't intend to tell it to you.'

'But why not?'

'Oh, I can't explain.' said Basil. 'When I like people a lot, I never tell their names to my other friends. I love secrets, that 's all.'

'Of course,' agreed his friend. 'Life is much more exciting when you have secrets.'


Question 1 of 6

1. What surprises people about the artist's behavior?

Question 1 of 6

Question 2 of 6

2. What do we learn about Lord Henry?

Question 2 of 6

Question 3 of 6

3. According to Lord Henry, what is important for artists to do?

Question 3 of 6

Question 4 of 6

4. At first how does Lord Henry react to the painting?

Question 4 of 6

Question 5 of 6

5. According to the artist, what is he worried about?

Question 5 of 6

Question 6 of 6

6. Why is the artist reluctant to tell the name of the person in the painting?

Question 6 of 6


Listen to the story about the wrestler who wrote a book.
Extra Free Exercises for B2 First Reading Part 5.

B2 First Reading Part 5B2 First Use of English and Reading Section

You need to be able to understand a range of texts, including how they are organised and the opinions and attitudes expressed in them. The texts will be from sources familiar to you such as magazines, articles, fiction and advertisements, but targeted at the interests of students. Students’ use of English will be tested by tasks which show how well they can control their grammar and vocabulary.

For this part, you practice how to understand the details of a text, including opinions and attitudes.

For this part, you practice how to understand the structure and follow the development of a text.

For this part, you practice how to find specific information in a text or texts.

B2 First Writing Section

You are required to produce two pieces of writing. The first piece is compulsory and will be an essay of 140-190 words. For the second, you can choose from an article, email/letter, essay, review or report (B2 First for schools the report is replaced with a story) of 140-190 words.

B2 First Listening and Speaking Section

Requires being able to follow and understand a range of familiar spoken materials, such as news programmes, public announcements and other sources, but targeted at the interests of the learners.

In this part you talk to the examiner about yourself and your life, e.g. your name, school, interests and future plans.

In this part, you talk about two photos on your own which you have to compare for about 1 minute. After you have finished, your partner will be asked a short question about your photo. When your partner has spoken about their photos for about 1 minute, you will be asked a question about their photos.

In this part you express ideas with your partner by looking at a discussion point that the examiner gives you.

This will be available soon.

In this part, you focus on general aspects of a topic with the examiner or you may involve your partner.

This will be available soon.

In this part, you will hear people talking in eight different situations.

In this part, you will hear someone being interviewed.

In this part, you will hear five people talking about different things.

In this part, you will hear an interview.

Especially helpful are exercises that are focussed on a theme or topic as these provide word retention practise so you can be confident to read, write, speak and listen successfully. We have many activities to get your English up to speed in no time.

Customs and Traditions explores how we celebrate our cultural identity across the globe.

Entertainment and Leisure explores how we spent our free time.

Environment and Nature explores the way humans and animals live, adapt and change on our planet.

Exploring how different societies create roles for people to develop their skills and knowledge.

Exploring how we learn and adjust to the world around us. .

Exploring how we experience the world through our life journeys

The more words you encounter and understand, the broader your day-to-day vocabulary will become. Our word games and puzzles such as our films word search are an excellent way to help to reinforce spellings in your mind.
Level Links:
This free material is for students at an Upper Intermediate Level of English. This will probably be suitable for students in their third or fourth year of English studies. We add exercises on grammar and vocabulary as well as whole text activities on a regular basis. In addition, we provide test practice activity for students who are preparing for the C1 Advanced which is part of the Cambridge Assessment English Main Suite as well as the English Language B for the IB Diploma. The material will also support students studying for the Cambridge Advanced courses and IELTS examinations.

We also provide free resources across the full range of levels to provide the tools to communicate in English well.

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