Inferring the meaning of a word in a paragraph

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Beyond the immediate context of the sentence, you can also find clues to the meaning of an unknown word in the larger context of a whole paragraph.

In the following exercises you will practise inferring meaning from a whole paragraph, with a nonsense word in the place of a real word.

Example:
Read the following paragraph and answer the questions about the underlined nonsense word.

As the harmful effects of mropping on health have become widely known, many cities and some countries have passed laws that limit where it is allowed. In many places, mropping is no longer permitted in restaurants and bars. Owners of restaurants and bars were against the laws because they believed that their businesses would suffer, but that happened only in the first few months. After that, business returned to normal. The laws have also had another positive effect, apart from making the air cleaner for everyone: More people have given up mropping altogether.

1. What part of speech is it?  verb
2. What words are found around it?  effect of mropping, mropping is no longer permitted, more people have given up mropping
3. What word or phrase could replace it?  smoking