1. Since at least 1868, paleontologists have been arguing over whether or not birds evolved from dinosaurs. In the late 1960s, a scientist from Yale University named John Ostrom declared there were 22 features in the skeletons of meat-eating dinosaurs that were also seen in birds but not in any other animals. By the year 2000, 85 such characteristics unique to dinosaurs and birds had been discovered. Some very vocal critics continue to oppose the theory, but this skeletal evidence strongly supports the idea that dinosaurs are the direct ancestors of modern birds.
Which of the following, if true, would allow the conclusion of the argument to be more properly drawn?
A Tetrapod dinosaurs evolved feathers in place of scales because feathers conferred greater protection against the cold.
B The existence of so many uniquely linked characteristics can be explained by convergent evolution, the development of similarities in separate lineages through the operation of similar selective factors on both lines.
C Several of the supporters of the theory that birds evolved from dinosaurs are paleontologists who are highly regarded in their field.
D It is impossible to tell for certain by examining the fossil record whether dinosaurs were warmblooded like birds or cold-blooded like reptiles.
E The earliest "feathered dinosaur" fossil found has been dated at 129 million years old, while the earliest "true bird" fossil has been dated at 150 million years old.
In the ruins of the city-state of Assur, in Ancient Assyria, archaeologists found dried goatskin dating back 3800 years. Analysis of the goatskins showed that they had an unusual pH level that was no lower than that of the calcium carbonate mixture produced by grinding cowrie shells, the most common seashells found on the shore of the Tigris river that runs through Assur. Some believe that this is evidence the Assyrians engaged in the practice of "liming" animal skins: soaking them in alkaline solutions made from crushed seashells in order to create parchment that could be traded with nearby civilizations.
Which of the following, if true, would, together with the information above, provide the best evidence for the claim that the dried goatskins are evidence that the Assyrians engaged in the practice of "liming" animal skins?
A The calcium carbonate from the cowrie shell is the most common chemical used in modern-day "liming" of parchment and leather.
B Calcium carbonate mixtures of different concentrations can produce a wide range of pH levels in alkaline solutions.
C The goatskins were found in huts that contained equipment known to have been used by Assyrian tradesmen and chemists.
D Apart from the Assur discovery, there is reliable evidence that some ancient civilizations, such as the Babylonians, practiced "liming."
E Archaeologists matched the goatskins to goat skeletons found on the outskirts of Assur on the banks of the Tigris River.