During an excavation in western China, archaeologists were surprised to discover more than 100 mummified corpses that dated back 2,000 years. But a college professor named Victor Mair was downright stupefied when he came skull-to-skull with some of the blond-haired and long-nosed Tarim mummies after they were dug up and put on display at a museum. So in 1993, Mair returned to collect DNA samples from the mummies. Test results ultimately validated his hunch that the bodies were of European genetic stock.

In this passage, what does the word “stupefied” most nearly mean?

puzzled

Explanation

The professor could have been impressed with, or even doubtful about, the mummies. But the context of the final sentence, which tells the reader he validated a hunch, means there was something to solve. In this case the other three choices are incorrect.

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