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Sr.Inter Prose paragraph questions & Annotations

1. Rumblings of the Storm

1 1. Describe Gandhi’s initial infatuation for the European style of living.

a. “Rumblings of the storm” describes the journey of Gandhiji and his family by ship
from Bombay to Durban. It presents his initial love for the European lifestyle. He
thought that by following that style he could have some influence on the community,
which he wanted to serve. So he forced the entire family to follow the Western style of
living. The Parsi style was considered the most fashionable in India in those days. His
wife wore a Parsi saree and his children wore the Parsi coat and trousers. They used
knives and forks for eating. The whole family felt difficult to follow this style. Soon
Gandhi’s infatuation came to an end.

Infatuation: fascination initial: early

fashionable: stylish lifestyle: routine

influence: power community: society

2. How did the gale unite all passengers? What role did Gandhi play during the
storm? How did the captain console the passengers?

a. On their way from Bombay to Durban, Gandhiji and the other passengers faced the
danger of a storm. The gale was very violent and the passengers were afraid. All became
friendly in that danger. They forgot the differences of language, race and religion. They
began to pray to god. The Captain also joined them. He convinced them of their safety in
that well built ship. Gandhiji was not afraid of the storm because he had the experience
of a storm. He was a good sailor and would not get seasickness. So he moved freely
among the passengers bringing them comfort. He conveyed to them the hourly reports of
the captain. He felt that the friendship he formed proved useful in the hour of need.

Violent: aggressive convince: influence

danger: risk religion: faith

seasickness: nauseated from rocking of boat pray: request

sailor: somebody who travels on a boat or ship convey: express

comfort: console friendship: closeness

report: details storm: tempest


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well built: muscular experience: practice

3. When did prayer give place to Maya?

a. When the fear of death was gone from the minds of the passengers, their earnest prayer
gave place to Maya. They all became one forgetting their differences in the danger of
storm. They began to pray collectively. When it was over, their faces beamed with
gladness. With the disappearance of the storm, the name of god also disappeared from
their lips. They spent the time in eating, drinking and merrymaking. The lesson reveals
the opportunistic nature of humanbeings even in the matters pertaining to god.

Maya: merrymaking: amusement

earnest: sincere disappearance: vanishing

Annotations:

1. All became in face of common danger. They forgot their differences and began to
think of the one and only God.

This passage is taken from the lesson “Rumblings of the Storm” written by
Mahatma Gandhi. It describes the journey of Gandhi and his family by ship from
Bombay to Durban. It describes his love for European lifestyle. It also illustrates how in
the face of common danger, all the passengers forget all their differences.
When the ship was caught in a violent storm, all the passengers were afraid.
They forgot their differences of language, race and religion. They began to pray to God
collectively. Thus the essay reveals the opportunistic nature of human beings even in the
matters pertaining to God.

opportunistic: taking advantage of an opportunity

journey: trip common: ordinary

rumbling: a deep rolling sound violent: fierce

pertain: relate

2. “His will be done” was the only cry on every lip.

a. This passage is taken from the lesson “Rumblings of the Storm” written by
Mahatma Gandhi. It describes the journey of Gandhi and his family by ship from
Bombay to Durban. It describes his love for European lifestyle. It also illustrates how in
the face of common danger, all the passengers forget all their differences.
When the ship was caught in a violent storm, all the passengers were afraid.
They lost hope and became philosophical. They began to say that everything would
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happen according to the will of God. So they left their destiny to the Almighty. Later the
sky cleared and they were out of danger.
philosophical: thoughtful Almighty: supreme (God)

destiny: fate illustrate: exemplify

3. The friendship thus I formed stood me and as we shall see in good stead.

a. This passage is taken from the lesson “Rumblings of the Storm” written by
Bombay to Mahatma Gandhi. It describes the journey of Gandhi and his family by ship
from Durban. It describes his love for European lifestyle. It also illustrates how in the
face of common danger, all the passengers forget all their differences.
When the ship was caught in a violent storm, all the passengers were afraid.
They lost hope and became philosophical. They prayed to God. Gandhi moved fearlessly
among the passengers, bringing them comfort. He conveyed to them the hourly reports of
the Captain. Thus the friendship made by Gandhi proved useful in the hour of need. Soon
the storm disappeared.

convey: express friendship: amity

comfort: console describe: portray

fearlessly: bravely

2. A Work of Art

1. Why did Sasha think of presenting a candelabrum to the doctor?

a. Anton Chekhov’s story “A Work of Art” is a gentle satire on the hypocritical attitude
of people towards certain types of art. Dr.Koshelkov saved the life of Sasha, the only son
of his mother by giving him treatment. Sasha and his mother thought of presenting the
candelbrum to the doctor. Sasha went to the doctor, and conveyed his mother’s regards.
He handed over a wonderful Candelabrum to the doctor. It was a masterpiece in antique
bronze. He requested the doctor to accept the candelabrum, because they were not in a
position to pay the fees to him.

Masterpiece: work of genius hypocritical: deceitful

convey: express bronze: metal compound containing copper and


other elements
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2. In the story everyone who receives the candelabrum is all of praise for its beauty
but is also eager to get rid of it. Why? What do you understand from this about the
attitude of people to art?

a. Sasha presented a bronze candelabrum of rare worth to the doctor. It was a work of art
representing nude figures of two women on a platform. Though it was a pretty, it was
indecent. The doctor, the lawyer and the comedian secretly liked it but could not keep it.
They declared that they were offended by the nudity of the candelabrum. They thought
that public would condemn their artistic liking. They were eager to get rid of it. It would
indicate their hypocritical attitude towards certain types of art. They looked at the noble
masterpiece through the eyes of the rabble (people of low social position).

rare: exceptional indecent: lewd

pretty: beautiful condemn: criticise

3. “His power of speech was gone” Who was left speechless? Why?

a. Sasha presented a wonderful candelabrum in antique bronze to the doctor. As he


thought it indecent, he gifted it to his lawyer friend. That lawyer presented it to a
comedian. He also thought it indecent and so he sold it to Sasha’s mother. Sasha felt
happy because he found a mate to the candelabrum. He did not know that I was the same
piece given to the doctor. He took it to the doctor and gave it to him. When the doctor
saw it, he was shocked. He became speechless. His efforts to get rid of the candelabrum
proved futile.
antique: very old mate: friend

futile: useless

Annotations:
1. Beelzebub himself could have conceived anything more ugly.

This passage is taken from the story “A Work of Art” written by Anton Chehov.
It is a satire on the hypocritical attitude of people towards certain types of art. Though all
find the candelabrum attractive, they could not possess it. They are offended by the
nudity of the art.
Sasha presented a wonderful candelabrum to the doctor. It was a magnificent but
contained two nude figures of beautiful women. The doctor thought that it was indecent.
He said that even Beelzebub, the devil could not have thought of an uglier thing. So he
wanted to get rid of it.

offended: insulted get rid of: throw away

possess: own Beelzebub: devil


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2. “As luck could have it, I’ve just succeeded in getting the mate to your
candelabrum”.
This passage is taken from the story “A Work of Art” written by Anton
Chehov. It is a satire on the hypocritical attitude of people towards certain types of art.
Though all find the candelabrum attractive, they could not possess it. They were offended
by the nudity of the art. They wanted to get rid of it.
The comedian sold the candelabrum to Sasha’s mother. Sasha was very
happy. He found a mate to the candelabrum that he had given to the doctor. He took the
piece of Art to the doctor happily. The doctor was shocked and became speechless. His
efforts to get rid of the candelabrum proved futile.

Comedian: clown attractive: eye-catching

3. The Lost Umbrella

1. What does R.K.Narayan say about the raid on the shop by the Sales Tax
Depatment?

a. The essay “The Lost Umbrella” is a humorous sketch of a small episode in the life of
R.K.Narayan. It narrates the sense of loss of an umbrella and the author’s philosophical
musings in this regard. One day the author was returning home from his evening walk.
He stopped at a shop to buy cloves. It was not a suitable moment for the transaction. At
that time the Sales Tax Department Officers raided the shop. The shopkeeper could not
pay attention to him. The shop was like a zoology practical class where the students
crowded over a specimen on the table. Every one was busy giving daybooks, stock-
registers, and ledgers to the officers. They treated the officers like gods.

episode: event, incident specimen: sample

clove: the dried flower bud of a tropical tree transaction: business

2. What were the feelings of Narayan on discovering the loss of his umbrella?

a. R.K.Narayan realised that he lost his umbrella at about eleven in the night. He forgot
it in the shop, where he stopped to buy cloves. Immediately he went to the shop but the
shop was closed. After an uneasy night of sleep, he went to the shop the next morning.
The shopkeeper told Narayan that there was a big crowd at the shop, the previous
evening. Somebody might have taken away the umbrella. Narayan gave a complaint to
the police but invain. When he thinks of the plan to get back his umbrella, many
problems appeared before him. Finally he gave up the idea of searching for the umbrella.
He sought consolation in philosophy.

Philosophy: way of life consolation: comfort


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3. How did R.K.Narayan seek consolation in philosophy?

a. The essay “The Lost Umbrella” is a humorous sketch of a small episode in the life of
R.K.Narayan. It narrates the sense of loss of an umbrella and the author’s philosophical
musings in this regard. One day R.K.Narayan lost his umbrella in a shop. He tried to
find it out but invain. When all his efforts to retrieve the umbrella, R.K. fell back on
philosophy. He thought that he had helped a poor man to protect himself from sun and
shower. He remembered what was said in our holy books. They ordered us to donate
umbrellas on various occasions. The bridegroom was given an umbrella on the wedding
day. The priest was given an umbrella when some one died.

musings: aimless thoughts retrieve: recover

4. What is the difference in the attitude of an English man, an American and an


Indian towards an umbrella?

a. The essay “The Lost Umbrella” is a humorous sketch on the loss of an umbrella. It is
interesting to note the differences in the way the umbrella is used by people of different
nations. R.K.Narayan began to think of the attitude of an Englishman, an American, and
an Indian towards an umbrella. An umbrella is a part of an Englishman’s limb. An
American is terribly casual and indifferent towards it. When the weather is normal, he
carries an umbrella. But when the wind becomes sharp, he throws it away into a dustbin.
And go in a taxi. An Indian will never throw away an umbrella though it is old. He
repairs it and uses.

indifferent: uncaring normal: usual

terribly: horribly

5. Why did R.K.feel elated at the end?

a. R.K.Narayan lost his umbrella in a shop. He went there to buy cloves and forgot it. All
his efforts to get back it proved futile. He fell back on philosophy. He thought that he had
helped a poor man to protect himself from sun and shower. On the fourth day of the loss
he felt elated. He was filled with a sense of redemption. He got that umbrella forty years
ago as some one got it at the clove shop. Actually that umbrella belonged to some
Bettiah. He came to deliver an invitation to R.K. and forgot the umbrella at the gate.

shower: rainfall futile: useless

elated: delighted actually: really

invitation: to invite
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Annotations:

1. Our Shastras enjoin upon every individual to perform umbrella dan on every
possible occasion.

These lines are taken from the essay “The Lost Umbrella” written by
R.K.Narayan. It narrates humorously the author’s philosophical musings on the loss of
an umbrella. When R.K. failed to retrieve his lost umbrella, he fell back on philosophy.
He thought that he had helped a poor man to protect himself from sun and
shower. He recollected what was said in our Shastras. They ordered people to donate
umbrellas on various occasions. The Bridegroom was given an umbrella on the wedding
day. The priest was also given an umbrella when some one died.

occasion: incident humorously: comically

2. Forty years ago, I acquired an umbrella as someone else did at the clove shop.

These lines are taken from the essay “The Lost Umbrella” written by
R.K.Narayan. It narrates humorously the author’s philosophical musings on the loss of
an umbrella. When R.K. failed to retrieve his lost umbrella, he fell back on philosophy.
He thought that he had helped a poor man to protect himself from sun and shower.
On the fourth day of his loss of umbrella, he felt elated. He was filled with a
sense of redemption. He got an umbrella forty years ago as someone else took his
umbrella four days ago. Actually R.K.Narayan’s umbrella belonged to a man called
Bettiah. He came to deliver an invitation to the author and forgot the umbrella at the gate.
The loss of umbrella made the author remember the mistake he committed forty years
ago. He was filled with a sense of relief.

redemption: liberation to deliver: to give

4. Saving the Plant

1. What happens when human demands exceed sustainable yield of natural systems?

a. Lester R.Brown, one of the most leading environmentalists of the world opines that
human beings are exploiting natural resources over the ages. As a result forests are
shrinking, fisheries are collapsing and water tables are falling. The demands of the human
beings are exceeding the sustainable yield of natural systems. These demands are
increasing every year. It is high time to check the degradation of Eco-system. Every one
must play a part to halt the ecological damage.

leading: top collapse: fall down

natural resources: minerals fisheries: fish

shrinking: decrease sustainable: maintaining ecological


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balance
degradation: ruin high time: the action that should have

eco-system: environment been done sooner or a long time ago

2. What are the two overriding challenges that global civilization is facing? Why is it
necessary to succeed on both fronts?

a. Lester R.Brown, one of the most leading environmentalists of the world opines that
human beings are exploiting natural resources over the ages. As a result forests are
shrinking, fisheries are collapsing and water tables are falling. There are two overriding
challenges that our global civilization faces. They are - stabilise climate and population.
Success on both fronts will solve problems such as deforestation, stabilizing water tables
and protecting animals and plants. Then only we can save the Eco system.

climate: weather problem: trouble

population: people water tables: groundwater level

deforestation: remove trees from the forest area

civilization: culture

3. How, according to the writer, can we stabilise population?

a. One of the overriding challenges that the world faces today is population. The world
population is increasing steadily. The annual increase in world population was 38 million
in 1950. It mounted to 87 million in 1989. It dropped to 78 million in 1998. The
governments must formulate strategies to stabilise world population. Once they are
developed, it is in the interest of the international community to support the stabilisation
effort. Then only we can save the Eco system.

annual: yearly stabilisation: consistency

overriding: dominant

4. Why should we shift from a carbon-based economy to a solar /hydrogen based


economy?

a. Due to the exploitation of natural resources, forests are shrinking, fisheries are
collapsing and water tables are falling. It is a threat to our Eco-system. In order to save
our Eco-system, we have to stabilise climate and control population. To stabilsie climate,
we have to shift from carbon based energy economy to alternative sources of energy.
They are Solar / hydrogen based economy. Solar energy includes hydropower, wind
power, wood and direct sunlight. If investments are made in such energy sources, climate
will be stabilised.
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investment: savings economy: financial system

include: take in

5. What are the reasons for wind power becoming the basis of the new economy?

a. The world wind energy is enormous. Today the world gets over one-fifth of all its
electricity from hydropower. But it is less than wind power potential. India gets 900
megawatts of capacity from wind. It is the unquestioned leader in the developing world.
The cost of wind generation is dropping. It is one of the cheapest sources of electricity.
Hence wind power is becoming the basis of the new energy economy.

enormous: huge potential: probable

cheapest: costing little basis: root

unquestioned: undisputed

6. Why do you think leadership and time are scarce resources in our war to save the
planet?

a. The governments must formulate strategies to stabilise world population. Once these
are developed, it is in the interest of the International community to support the effort. In
stabilising climate and population, we need sincere and hard working leaders. Leadership
and time are scarce resources in this mission. So every individual must play a part in it.
We need visionary leaders, who will take steps to save the planet. Then only we can save
our planet from ecological damage.

international: global strategy: plan

visionary: thinker damage: injure

Annotations:

1. If we cannot stabilize climate and population, there is not an ecosystem on earth


that we can save.

These lines are taken from the essay “Saving the Planet” written by Lester
R.Brown. He is one of the leading environmentalists of the world. He says that human
beings are exploiting natural resources over the ages. As a result forests are shrinking and
water tables are falling. Every year the demand increases. We consume more of the fish
stocks, forests and water. So our ecosystem has drastically reduced in the recent past.
To prevent this we have to solve two problems. We have to stabilize climate
and control population. If we fail to do so, we cannot save the ecosystem. Hence we must
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work for success to save our planet. Everyone must play a part to halt the ecological
damage.

ecological: environmental drastically: considerably

planet: earth

2. Once these strategies are developed, it is in the interest of the international


community to support the stabilisation effort.

These lines are taken from the essay “Saving the Planet” written by Lester
R.Brown. He is one of the leading environmentalists of the world. He says that human
beings are exploiting natural resources over the ages. As a result forests are shrinking and
water tables are falling. Every year the demand increases. Our ecosystem has drastically
reduced in the recent past.
To check the degradation of the ecosystem, we have to invent the new energy
resources. The governments must formulate strategies to control the world population.
These measures should be taken in the interest of the community to support the
stabilisation effort. So we need sincere, hard working and visionary leaders who will take
steps to save the planet.

shrinking: decrease community: group of people

formulate: make exploit: use

5. The Imp and the Crust

1. How did the imp initially try to make the poor peasant commit a sin? Did he
succeed?

a. A poor peasant took with him a crust of bread for his breakfast. He kept the bread in his
coat. He began to plough the field. After sometime he felt hungry. He searched the coat
for bread. But he could not find it. An imp had stolen his bread. He was sitting behind a
bush waiting to hear the scolding of the peasant. Though the peasant was sorry to lose his
bread, he was not angry with the thief. In stead he thought that the bread might do good
to the thief. Thus the imp failed to make the peasant commit a sin.

crust: outer part of the bread commit: do wrong

peasant: small farmer imp: goblin

Scolding: rebuke bush: shrub


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2. Why did the devil blame the imp?

a. An imp had stolen the bread of a poor peasant. He was sitting behind a bush waiting to
hear the scolding of the peasant. Though the peasant was sorry to lose his bread, he was
not angry with the thief. In stead he thought that the bread might do good to the thief.
Thus the imp failed to make the peasant commit a sin. The imp went to the devil, its
master. The devil became angry. He blamed the imp for being incompetent. He served
the imp an ultimatum. The imp should make the peasant commit a sin within three years.
Otherwise he would be ducked in holy water.

ducked in: push under water devil: sprite, imp

incompetent: unskilled blame: censure

Holy water: blessed water in church sin: wrong doing

ultimatum: challenge

3. How did the imp make the peasant rich? What vice did he introduce the peasant?

a. The imp turned himself into a laborer. He joined in the service of the poor peasant. He
advised the peasant to sow wheat in a marshy place. He followed the advice and had a
good crop in that dry year. The next year the imp advised him to sow the seed on the hill.
It turned out to be a wet year. Again the peasant got a fine crop. He had more grain left
over than before. He did not know what to do with it. The imp showed him how to make
alcohol from the grain. He made it and began to drink it himself. Later he gave it to his
friends and began enjoying the company of drunkards.

laborer: manual worker vice: immoral habit

marshy place: boggy. sow: implant

grain: granule drunkard: somebody who habitually drinks


too much alcohol

4. Give two instances to show how the peasant became selfish and mean after
acquiring wealth.

a. When the peasant was poor, he was kind-hearted. As soon as he became rich, he
turned to drink. It was the beginning of his down fall. He invited some well-to-do
neighbours to a drink. His wife was offering drink to the guests. When she spilled a glass
of drink, he scolded her in the presence of the guests. A poor peasant came in uninvited.
He requested the peasant to give him some drink. He did not give him any drink. He told
him that he could not find drink for everyone who comes along.

self-control: will power down fall: ruin


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well-to-do: rich scold: rebuke

uninvited: unwelcome

5. Describe how the rich peasants behaved like animals after having drinks.

a. After having drinks, the peasants began to make false, oily speeches to one another.
They had another glass each. Their talk became wilder and rougher. They began to abuse
and fought with each other. They punched their noses. They had a third glass of drink.
They behaved like brutes. They muttered and shouted unnecessarily. This parable written
by Leo Tolstoy stresses the need for self-control.

brute: animal punch: hit

muttered: mumbled unnecessarily: unreasonably

6. Explain how the imp displays a good understanding of human nature.

a. The devil appreciated the success of the imp. He thought the imp might have mixed the
blood of the fox, the wolf and the swine. The imp replied that there was no need to do all
that. There was always the blood of beasts in man. The peasant exhibited the cruel
qualities of animals like the fox, the wolf, and the swine after he was over drunk. When
he began to turn God’s gifts into spirits for his own pleasure, his beastly qualities came
out. The imp encouraged him to turn himself as a beast. Thus the imp displayed a good
understanding of human nature.

fox: wolf:

swine: display: exhibit

exhibit: show

Annotations:

1. If in three years you don’t get the better of the peasant, I’ll have you ducked in holy
water.
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These lines are taken from the story “The Imp and the Crust” written by
Leo Tolstoy. It illustrates how riches ruin a man and change him into a beast. A poor
peasant took a crust of bread for his breakfast to fields. An imp had stolen it. He was
sitting behind the bush to hear the scolding of the peasant. The peasant felt sorry to lose
his bread but he was not angry with the thief. He thought it might do the thief some good.
Thus the imp failed to make the peasant commit sin.
The imp went to the devil, his master, sand told him about his failure. The
devil became angry and served an ultimatum. The imp should make the peasant commit a
sin with in three years. If he failed, he would be pushed under holy water.

crust: ultimatum:

illustrate: peasant:

commit: riches:

scolding: imp:

2. “The blood of the beasts is always in man”.

These lines are taken from the story “The Imp and the Crust” written by
Leo Tolstoy. It illustrates how riches ruin a man and change him into a beast. When the
peasant was poor, he was kind-hearted. As soon as he became rich, he turned to drink. It
was the beginning of his down fall. The parable stresses the need for self-control.
The peasant exhibited the cruel qualities of animals like the fox, the wolf,
and the swine after he was over drunk. The Devil appreciated the success of the imp and
asked how the drink was made. He thought the imp might have mixed the blood of the
fox, the wolf and the swine. The imp replied that there was no need to do all that. There
was always the blood of beasts in man.

Kind-hearted: parable:

devil:

6. The Dear Departed


1. Compare and contrast the characters of Mrs.Slater and Mrs. Jordan.
a. Mrs. Amelia Slater and Mrs.Elizabeth Jordan are the daughters of Abel Merry Weather.
Mrs.Slater is vigorous, plump, red-faced vulgar woman. Mrs. Jordan is a stout
complacent woman, who always thinks that she is right. They are selfish. They never
really cared for their father. But they pretend to love him for the sake of property. They
think that their father is dead. They fight for their father’s possessions. So Mrs. Slater
takes the bureau, the clock and the slippers of her father. Mrs. Jordan wants to take her
father’s gold watch.

Complacent: selfish:
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possessions: slippers:

Vigorous: bureau:

2. How does the old man surprise and disappoint his daughters?

a. Mrs. Amelia Slater and Mrs.Elizabeth Jordan are the daughters of Abel Merry Weather.
They think that their father is dead. They wear mourning dresses. They fight for Abel’s
property. At that time Abel suddenly appears before them. They are surprised. He wants
to make a new will. He decides to give all his property to whoever he is living with when
he dies. Both his daughters want him to be with them. He refuses because he knows their
selfishness. So he declares that he is going to get married. On hearing the news, the
daughters are disappointed.

Suddenly: property:

decide:

3. Discuss the irony of the title ‘The Dear Departed’.

a. Mrs. Amelia Slater and Mrs.Elizabeth Jordan are the daughters of Abel Merry
Weather. They think that their father is dead. They wear mourning dresses. They fight for
Abel’s property. At that time Abel suddenly appears before them. They are surprised. He
wants to make a new will. He declares that he is going to get married. On hearing the
news, the daughters are disappointed. The irony is evident in the title of the play. Though
the father is called dear, he is not dear to anybody. The other word in the title is
‘departed’, which means death. There is no one departed in the play.

Declare: evident:

depart: Irony:

Annotations:

1.Now Amelia, you mustn’t give way. We’ve got to die some time or other.

This passage is taken from a short play “The Dear Departed” written by
Stanely Houghton The play centres on the hypocrisy and meanness of people, who ill-
treat their aged parents. Though none of the family members has any regard for the
departed soul, all claim that he is dear to them.
Mrs. Amelia Slater and Mrs. Elizabeth Jordan are the daughters of Abel Merry
Weather. Mr. and Mrs. Jordan come to the house of Amelia, when they are informed of
the death of Abel. They think of their dead father. While saying that he is seventy-two,
Amelia sniffs back a tear. Ben consoles her. He says that every one must die sometime or
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other. Hence the two sisters and their husbands are not worried about the death of Abel.
They are interested only in his property.

Hypocrisy: regard:

console: sniff:

2. And you, too. Are you such a poor creature that you must do very dirty thing she
tells you?

This passage is taken from a short play “The Dear Departed” written by
Stanely Houghton. The play centres on the hypocrisy and meanness of people, who ill-
treat their aged parents. Though none of the family members has any regard for the
departed soul, all claim that he is dear to them.
Amelia and her husband, Henry believes that Abel is dead. They take away the
bureau and the clock from his room. When Abel wakes up, he finds that some of his
belongings have been shifted from his room. Mrs. Jordan, sister of Amelia finds fault
with Henry, who does everything according to the wishes of his wife.

Meanness: belongings:

shifted:

Poetry Paragraph questions & Annotations

1. Virtue

1. Describe the things that the poet says are sweet but short-lived. Or how is the
virtuous soul different from the items mentioned earlier in the poem “Virtue”?

a. The poet George Herbert presents the idea of what is short lived and what is of lasting
value in the poem “Virtue”. The day, the spring, the rose and all other things are very
sweet but short-lived. The day is pleasant, cool, and bright. The marriage of the earth and
the sky takes place during the day. The day comes to an end when dusk descends. The
rose is very beautiful and smells sweet. It is red and bright. It attracts everybody. Still it
lives only for a day. Spring is a pleasant season. It is full of music and flowers. But it is
also temporary. Hence nothing in the world is permanent. Only a sweet and virtuous soul
is permanent. Loving thoughts, compassionate words and noble deeds last forever. Virtue
never perishes.

Virtue: lasting:

dusk: compassionate:
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Annotations:

1.Sweet rose, whose hue, angry and brave,


Bids the rash gazer wipe his eye:

a. These lines are taken from the poem “Virtue” written by George Herbert, a
metaphysical poet. Metaphysical poems are religious and philosophical in content and
contain elaborate images. In this poem the poet presents the idea of what is short-lived
and what is of lasting value.
The rose is very beautiful. It gives sweet smell. It looks bright in red colour. It
attracts the attention of every body. One looks at it for a long time and enjoys its beauty.
But such a rose lives only for a day. It withers and dies the next morning. Hence the poet
says that nothing is permanent in this world. Even the most beautiful things are
temporary.
Hue: elaborate:

lasting: wither:

permanent:

2. Only a sweet sand virtuous soul,


Like seasoned timber, never gives.

These lines are taken from the poem “Virtue” written by George Herbert, a
metaphysical poet. Metaphysical poems are religious and philosophical in content and
contain elaborate images. In this poem the poet presents the idea of what is short-lived
and what is of lasting value.
The day, the rose, the spring and all other things are temporary. They all die one
day. Only a sweet and virtuous soul is permanent. Loving thoughts, compassionate words
and noble deeds last forever. A Virtuous soul is like the conditioned timber, which is
made suitable for use. Articles made of seasoned wood have durability. Hence the only
thing that lives on endlessly is virtue.

compassionate:

seasoned: virtue:

Contrast: miserable:

nook and corner: statue:

In The Country

1.How does the poet W.H.Davies describe village life? Support your answer with
examples from the poem.
17

a. The poem “In the Country” is a lyrical representation of the concern that Davies has
for suffering humanity. Though it presents the contrast between village life and town life
on surface, it is an expression of the poet’s strong desire to help the poor and suffering.
Life in the countryside is very pleasant. There are plenty of trees that provide
fresh air. Children won’t cry for food. There is no scarcity for food. The women are
healthy. They lead a peaceful life without any worry in the lap of Nature.

Concern: contrast:

humanity: scarcity:

2. Who is a selfish man according to Davies? Is the speaker selfish?

a. The poem “In the Country” is a lyrical representation of the concern that Davies has
for suffering humanity. Though it presents the contrast between village life and town life
on surface, it is an expression of the poet’s strong desire to help the poor and suffering
The man who avoids poor people is a selfish man. We must help the poor and
suffering people. It is selfish to runaway from human suffering. We have to take care of
the sad and weak people. Though the speaker’s heart is full of compassion for them, his
pockets are empty. Haunted by the misery of the urban poor, he flees away to
countryside. The speaker is not selfish because he does not avoid the poor willingly.
Run away: selfish:

misery:

3. How does the poet describe the urban misery? Why is the speaker unable to help
the suffering people in cities? Or why does the speaker lose his cheerfulness in
cities?

a. The poem “In the Country” is an expression of Davies’ strong desire to help those in
poverty and misery. He portrays the grim squalor of urban life in the poem as well the
peaceful life in a village. Life in a city is miserable. People starve at the feet of the statue
of a great man. The speaker is shocked at the wretched conditions of the poor and he
wants to help them. But he realises that his pockets are empty. Many people in the city
are homeless. They take shelter under the trees. The green trees serve as a roof for many
homeless persons in the city. In a village the speaker finds very few people, hungry. But
in cities hunger pervades in every nook and corner. At the sight of the suffering people in
a city, he loses his cheerfulness.

Squalor: urban:

wretched: pervade:

Annotations:

1. No doubt he is a selfish man


18

Who shuns poor creatures sad and wan

These lines are taken from the poem “In The Country” written by W.H.Davies.
On the surface it presents the contrast between village life and town life. At a deeper
level, it is an expression of the poet’s strong desire to help those in poverty and sorrow.
The writer feels that we must help the suffering people. We have to take care of
the poor and the homeless. It a selfish thing to run away from human suffering. A man
who avoids the poor is a selfish man. It is inhuman to be indifferent to human suffering.
Hence we must help the needy.

Wan: needy:

inhuman:

2. Can I admire the park’s green tree


A roof for homeless misery.

These lines are taken from the poem “In The Country” written by W.H.Davies.
On the surface it presents the contrast between village life and town life. At a deeper
level, it is an expression of the poet’s strong desire to help those in poverty and sorrow.
Life in cities is miserable. Hunger pervades every nook and corner. Many men
starve at the feet of the statue of a great man. The green tree is a symbol of the beauty of
Nature. People in the city visit the park to appreciate the beauty the tree. But in the city
the people take shelter under the tree. So a tree serves as a roof for many homeless
people.

Serve: shelter:

appreciate:

3. When I can see few men in need,


I then have power to help by deed.
These lines are taken from the poem “ In The Country” written by W.H.Davies.
On the surface it presents the contrast between village life and town life. At a deeper
level, it is an expression of the poet’s strong desire to help those in poverty and sorrow.
The poet finds life in the city is miserable. Most of the people suffer from poverty.
They are homeless and hungry. They live miserable lives under the trees. The Poet’s heart
is full of compassion but his pockets are empty. Haunted by the misery, he flees to the
countryside. Their life is pleasant with out any worry.

Haunted: countryside:

pleasant:

3. Once Upon a Time


19

1. Describe how people used to laugh in olden days. Compare it with the way people
laugh these days.

a. The poem “Once Upon a Time” is a nostalgic yearning for the times when people
were simple and straightforward. Gabriel Okara feels that there was warmth in their
social behaviour and laughter. Their eyes reflected their sincerity. Their laughter indicated
their real happiness. But the people in the modern world are different. Their speech and
manners are marked by hypocrisy. They pretend to be happy and laugh artificially. One
can find unfriendliness in their eyes. There is no kind feeling for others. Hence people put
several masks and move smoothly from one role to another.

Nostalgic: simple:

straight forward: artificial:

2. What are the things the speaker has learnt in the poem “Once Upon a Time”?

a. The speaker has lived in the modern society for a long time. He observes their artificial
ways. In order to survive in the modern society, he followed their ways. He also has
learnt to laugh with his teeth and shake hands without any feeling in his heart. He has
learnt to say ‘Good bye’ when he means ‘Good-riddance’. It is an expression of relief at
being free of an unwanted person. The poem presents the idea of the speaker to go back
in to the time where everybody was sincere in word and deed. The speaker wants to rip
off the mask of hypocrisy that he is wearing. He wants to become a genuine person once
again.

Genuine: observe:

laugh with one’s teeth:

3. Who will show the speaker how to laugh naturally?

a. The speaker learns to imitate artificial manners and superficial talk, for his survival in
the modern society. He also has become a double-faced person like the others. His heart
is filled with remorse. He observes the happy and spontaneous laugh of his son. His son
is happy because he is not yet influenced by the hypocrisy. There is no selfishness in his
smile. The speaker cries out in anguish that he wants to rip off the mask of hypocrisy. He
longs to become a genuine person once again. He hopes that his son will teach him to
laugh heartily.

Manners: remorse:

spontaneous: anguish:

Annotations:
20

1.Now they shake hands without hearts


While their left hands search
My empty pockets.

These lines are taken from the poem “Once Upon a Time” written by Gabriel
Okara. The poem is about a nostalgic yearning for the times when people were simple
and straightforward. The poet expresses his strong desire to go back in time to the age in
which everyone was sincere in word and deed. In the modern times people are
hypocritical in their speech and manners. They put on different masks and move
smoothly from one role to another.
In the modern world people shake hands without any warm feelings in their
hearts. Their left hand searches the pockets of the other person. A person is given respect
depending on his social status.

Nostalgic: hypocritical:

manners:

2. I have also learnt to say, ‘Goodbye’


When I mean ‘Good-riddance’.

These lines are taken from the poem “Once Upon a Time” written by
Gabriel Okara. The poem is about a nostalgic yearning for the times when people were
simple and straightforward. The poet expresses his strong desire to go back in time to the
age in which everyone was sincere in word and deed. In the modern times people are
hypocritical in their speech and manners.
The poet has learnt the artificial ways of the modern world. He also has
become a double-faced man. He has learnt to laugh only with his teeth and shake hands
without his heart. He will say goodbye when he means good-riddance. He feels sad
about his behaviour and turns to his son for help. He requests his son to teach him to
unlearn the false things and laugh heartily. Through his son he wants to experience the
innocence and joy of childhood.

Straightforward: double-faced:

riddance:

3. So show me, son


how to laugh.

These lines are taken from the poem “Once Upon a Time” written by Gabriel
Okara. The poem is about a nostalgic yearning for the times when people were simple
and straightforward. The poet expresses his strong desire to go back in time to the age in
which everyone was sincere in word and deed. In the modern times people are
hypocritical in their speech and manners. They put on several masks and move smoothly
from one role to the other.
21

The speaker begins to imitate the artificial manners of the modern world. Soon he
also has become a double-faced person. He feels sad and seeks the help of his son to
unlearn those false things. He longs to become a genuine person and laugh heartily like a
child.

longs: unlearn:

imitate:

4. The Whiner’s Plaint

1. Describe the way the poet is identified in various foreign countries. How does the
poet react to this way of reference?

a. “The Whiner’s Plaint” is the strong plea of the poet V.S.Kumar for identity. It is the
problem faced by every Indian. The poet is identified as an Indian in foreign lands. Still
he is called by different names in different countries. He is called a coloured man in
South Africa. In the U.S.A. people poke fun at him and call Red Indian minus red. In
England he is contemptuously called ‘wag’ (Westernized Oriental Gentleman). The poet
does not like to be identified on the basis of religion, culture, language, colour and caste.
He longs to be called an Indian.

Contemptuously:

2. What are the different ways in which the poet is identified in India? Is he happy
with ways of identification? How does he express his feelings?

a. The poet is identified as an Indian in foreign lands. In India he is not called an Indian.
He is identified in many ways on the basis of religion, culture, language and caste. He is
called a Southie or a Madrasi beyond the Vindhya Mountains. When he is Madras, he is
addressed as a Malayalee because of his language. Muslims call him a Hindu. The
Hindus call him a Brahmin. But the poet wants to be called an Indian. He is not happy
with all these ways of identification. So he raises the question ‘Who am I?’ He expresses
his confusion and resentment.

Confusion: resentment:

3. What does the poet wish for? What will be the result if his wish is fulfilled? Will it
solve his problem?

a. The poet is identified as an Indian in foreign lands He is called a coloured man in


South Africa. In the U.S.A. people poke fun at him and call Red Indian minus red. In
England he is contemptuously called ‘wag’. In India he is identified in many ways. He
is called a Southie or a Madrasi beyond the Vindhya Mountains. When he is Madras, he
is addressed as a Malayalee because of his language. He is called a Hindu by Muslims
and a Brahmin by the Hindus. He is not happy with all these ways of identification. The
22

poet does not like to be identified on the basis of religion, culture, language, colour and
caste. He longs to be called only as an Indian. Identification in nationality offers him
dignity and solace.

Identification: solace:

dignity: hold:

Kindness: firmly:

Annotations:

1. In South Africa I’m coloured.


In the U.S.A. I’m minus red
To the English I am a wog.

These lines are taken from the poem, “The Whiner’s Plaint” written by
V.S.Kumar. The poem expresses the strong plea of the poet for identity. It is problem of
every Indian in abroad.
The poet is identified differently in different places. In South Africa, he is called a
coloured man. In U.S.A. people make fun of calling Red Indian minus red. In England he
is contemptuously called a wog, which stands for Westernized Oriental Gentleman.
Hence the poem reflects V.S.Kumar’s confusion and resentment about his identity.
Contemptuous: without respect. Plea:

Whiner: Plaint:

2.In Madras I am a Malayalee


Does anyone know who I am?
I wish they’d call me Indian
And be done with it.

These lines are taken from the poem, “The Whiner’s Plaint” written by
V.S.Kumar. The poem expresses the strong plea of the poet for identity. It is problem of
every Indian in abroad.
In India the poet is identified in many ways on the basis of religion, culture,
language and caste. He is called a Southie or a Madrasi. When he is Madras, he is called a
Malayalee because he speaks Malayalam. The Muslims call him a Hindu. The Hindus
call him a Brahmin. He questions whether any one knows who he is. Hence the poet
wants to be called an Indian.
Identity: identify:

plea:

5. Somebody’s Mother
23

1.Describe the condition of the old woman as she stood at the crossing in severe cold.

a. This poem is an interesting narration of a situation that every one encounters


sometime or the other. We often come across people struggling to cross busy roads.
An old, poor, weak woman stood at a crossing. Her clothes were torn. She looked
pale and tired. She was shivering in the severe cold. The winter was very harsh. Snow
had made the road slippery. Chill made the woman bend and shiver. She was afraid to
cross the road. The huge crowd of people just ignored her. No one cared to help her.

Narration: chill:
struggling: ignore:

2. Describe feelings of the schoolboys. Explain the reason for their happiness.

a. This poem is an interesting narration of a situation that every one encounters


sometime or the other. We often come across people struggling to cross busy roads.
An old, poor, weak woman stood at a crossroad. She was afraid to cross the busy
road. No one cared for her. Just then a crowd of schoolboys passed that way. They were
shouting with joy because they were free. They liked the white snow piled on the road.
They wanted to play in the snow because the school was over.

Piled: situation:

3.Describe the boy’s physical conditions. Compare it with that of the old woman.

a. An old, poor, weak woman stood at a crossing. Her clothes were torn. She looked pale
and tired. She was shivering in the severe cold. The winter was very harsh. Snow had
made the road slippery. Chill made the woman bend and shiver. Her arms were weak and
her feet were trembling. She was afraid to cross the road. A schoolboy took notice of her.
He was young and energetic. His feet were firm and strong. Holding the old woman’s
hand firmly, he conducted her safely across the road. He went back to his friends happy
and satisfied.

Shivering: trembling:
energetic:

4. Narrate the way the young boy conducted the old woman across the street. What
did he tell his friends?

a. An old, poor, weak woman stood at a crossing. She was afraid to cross the road. A
schoolboy took notice of her. He took pity on her. He wanted to help her. He was young
and energetic. Holding the old woman’s hand firmly, he conducted her safely across the
road. He went back to his friends happy and satisfied. He told them that the old woman
was some body’s mother. He helped her because she was old and weak. He also told them
that his deed of kindness might help his mother when she became old.
24

5. What did ‘Some body’s mother do that night in her home?

a. An old, poor, weak woman stood at a crossing. She was afraid to cross the road. A
schoolboy took notice of her. Holding the old woman’s hand firmly, he conducted her
safely across the road. He went back to his friends happy and satisfied. He told them that
the old woman was somebody’s mother. He felt that this deed of kindness might help his
mother when she became old. The old woman went home. She prayed to God to be kind
to the noble boy. He was undoubtedly the pride and joy of some mother somewhere.

Notice: satisfied:

noble:

Annotations:

1. Glad in the freedom of school let out


Came the boys like a flock of sheep.

These lines are taken from the poem “Somebody’s Mother” by an anonymous
poet. It is an interesting narration of a situation that everyone encounters sometime or the
other. We often come across people struggling to cross busy roads. An old woman stood
at a crossing. She was weak and poor. She was shivering in coldness. She was unable to
cross the road. Crowds of people jostled by but no one took pity on her.
Just then a crowd of schoolboys passed that way. They were happy because
they were let out of the school. They did not observe that old woman. The poet compared
the group of the boys to a flock of sheep.

Flock: shiver:
compare:

2. He paused beside her, and whispered low,


“I’ll help you across if you wish to go”.

These lines are taken from the poem “Somebody’s Mother” by an


anonymous poet. It is an interesting narration of a situation that everyone encounters
sometime or the other. We often come across people struggling to cross busy roads. An
old woman stood at a crossing. She was weak and poor. She was shivering in coldness.
She was unable to cross the road. Crowds of people jostled by but no one took pity on
her.
Just then a crowd of schoolboys passed that way. A boy took notice of her. He told
her that he would help her in crossing the road, if she wished to go. She agreed. Holding
her hand firmly, he helped her in crossing the road safely. Later he went back to his
friends happy and satisfied.

Situation: jostled:
25

3. “She is somebody’s mother, boys, you know


For all she’s aged and poor and slow;”

These lines are taken from the poem “Somebody’s Mother” by an anonymous poet.
In the poem an old woman stood at a crossing. She was weak and poor. She was
shivering in coldness. She was unable to cross the road. Crowds of people jostled by but
no one took pity on her. A schoolboy took notice of her. Holding her hand firmly, he
helped her in crossing the road safely.
The boy went back to his friends happily. He told them that the old woman was
somebody’s mother. As she was poor and old, he helped her. He felt that his deed of
kindness might help his mother someday.

Anonymous: shiver:

deed:

4. “God be kind to the noble boy


Who is somebody’s son and pride and joy.

These lines are taken from the poem “Somebody’s Mother” by an anonymous
poet. In the poem an old woman stood at a crossing. She was weak and poor. She was
shivering in coldness. She was unable to cross the road. Crowds of people jostled by but
no one took pity on her. A schoolboy took notice of her. Holding her hand firmly, he
helped her in crossing the road safely.
The old woman was happy. That night she prayed to god to be kind to the boy. The
boy might be undoubtedly the pride and joy of some mother some where.

Jostle:
******

Sr.Inter Non-detailed 2007-08.

The Prince and the Pauper


1. Describe the birth of Tom Canty and his early life in Offal Court.
Tom was born into a poor family named Canty in 1500s in London. His family
lived in a foul area called Offal Court. His mother and sisters loved him. But his father
and grandmother were cruel enough to beat him ruthlessly.
Tom’s father, John Canty was a thief. His grand mother was a beggar. They
made Tom a beggar also. But he begged enough to avoid trouble from his father. He spent
most of his time listening to Father Andrew’s charming old tales and legends about kings
and Princes. He also had learnt to read and write. The Father taught Tom a little bit of
Latin. Tom had studied it wholeheartedly.
Tom was greatly influenced by the stories of Princes. He began to act like a
Prince. His speech and manners appeared to be regal. People were surprised at the wit
26

and wisdom of Tom’s decisions. He became a hero to all around him. He even organised
a royal court and discussed the affairs of the kingdom. His dream of becoming a prince
came true when he exchanged places with Edward, the Prince of Wales. (195)

1. Charming: 2. Wholeheartedly:

2. Describe the meeting between Tom Canty and Edward, the Prince of Wales. What
happens as a consequence of their meeting?
a. Tom Canty met Prince Edward, at the Palace. He saw Edward adorned in lovely
silks and shining jewels. Tom wondered at the pomp of the prince. When he wanted to go
near the prince, the soldiers threw him away. Edward saw this and became angry. He
ordered the soldiers to open the gates and allow Tom inside. He was surprised to find
Tom to be identical in appearance.
Edward offered food to Tom. He came to know of the poverty of Tom’s family.
He promised to help the Canty family. He even asked Tom about his education. When
Tom told him about the activities at Offal Court, the prince listened to him in great
interest. He wanted to enjoy himself at the Offal Court. He exchanged his royal dress and
wore the rags of Tom. As they were identical in appearance, nobody could find out the
secret.
Edward went out in the clothes of a beggar. He ordered Tom to be in the palace
till he returned. After coming out of the palace, the prince came to know of the harsh
realities of life. (185)
1. identical: 2. Palace:

3. Appearance:

3. Describe the difficulties faced by Edward after he trades identities with Tom. How
does he manage to escape from the clutches of John Canty.
a. Prince Edward went out of his palace in the old rags of Tom. He reached a great
church, and recognised it as Christ’s Hospital. He saw a large crowed of orphans playing
there. He announced that he was their prince. They laughed at his torn clothes and
mocked at him.
John Canty saw Edward and mistook the boy for his son. When Edward told
him that he was a prince, he thought that his son had gone mad. He began to beat the boy.
A crowd gathered there to watch the scene. The prince struggled for freedom. Father
Andrew tried to save him but John Canty gave blows to him. In spite of his repeated
appeals, he was taken home. Tom’s mother understood that he was not her son. Mean
while John Canty was informed of the death of the FatherAndrew. John decided to save
himself. Along with his family he ran into the darkness. They reached London Bridge.
They saw a large crowed of revellers celebrating the occasion of the newly installed
Prince of Wales. Edward freed himself from the clutches of John Canty. He realised that a
false person was made the Prince. He went to the GuildHall to reclaim his rightful place.
But no body believed him the crowd made fun of him. (217)

4. Who is Miles Hendon? Describe the role played by him in rescuing the young
Prince. How is he finally rewarded?
27

a. Miles Hendon was the son of Sir Richard Hendon. Miles loved Lady Edith. But his
younger brother Hugh wanted Lady Edith’s fortune. So he poisoned his father’s brain
against Miles. So his father banished him from his house for a period of three years.
Miles became a soldier. There he was taken captive and sentenced for seven years. After
his release, he went to Hendon Hall.
Miles learnt that his father and elder brother were dead. Hugh wrote a false letter to
Edith about the death of Miles. He married Edith for her property. Hugh got Miles
arrested. He was sentenced to sit in the stocks for two hours by the judge.
Miles rescued Prince Edward from a hostile mob. He thought Edward poor, and
crazy. He was very kind to Edward and earned his gratitude and sympathy. He saved the
Prince from the accusations of theft and punishment of whipping. When Edward became
king, Miles was made the Earl of Kent. He gave Miles the privilege to sit in the presence
of the king. Hence Miles was the favourite of the king through out his rule. (188)

1.banish: 2. whipping:

3. accusation:

5. Discuss the role of Tom in the novel “The Prince and the Pauper”. Or
Sketch the character of Tom Canty.
a. Tom was born in a pauper’s family named Canty in 1500s in London. His family
lived in a foul area called Offal Court. His father, John Canty was a thief. He made Tom a
beggar. But Tom spent most of his time listening to Father Andrew’s charming old tales
and legends about kings and Princes. He learned to read and write. He was wise, kind,
and brave.
Tom began to act like a Prince. His speech and manners appeared to be regal.
People were surprised at the wit and wisdom of Tom’s decisions. He even organized a
mock royal court and discussed the affairs of the kingdom. His dream of becoming a
prince came true when he exchanged places with Edward, the Prince of Wales.
Tom had to perform the duties of the Prince. He took advice from Lord
Hertford whenever he needed. The whipping boy became a valuable source of
information to Tom. He showed great wisdom and mercy while giving judgements. When
Edward became king, Tom was praised for his wise decisions. So he made Tom the chief
Governor of Christ’s Hospital. He was entitled as ‘King’sWard’. He was a loyal friend to
the king throughout his life. (200words)

6. “The Prince and the Pauper” is a social satire and an attack on the inequality that
existed between the British aristocracy and the poor during the 16th century”-
comment.
a. Mark Twain is an American humorist, satirist, and novelist. “The Prince and
the Pauper” is the story of two boys, who are identical in appearance. They are Tom
Canty, a pauper and Edward, the son of Henry VIII of England. The novel is a social
satire condemning the inequality between the classes in England during the 16th century.
It is also an attack on the ageless human folly of attempting to measure true worth by
outward appearances.
28

The poor people lived in dirty areas and wore rags. They made their children
beggars and thieves. They ill-treated their children and did not show any interest in their
future. The rulers did not help them. The laws were strict and often the punishment was
severe even for small crimes. If one stole anything worth more than thirteen pence, he
would be hanged. The conditions in the prisons were horrible. The criminals were
sentenced to sit in the stocks. It was a sport for the dirty mob.
King Henry was a cruel. People suffered greatly and most of them had
become thieves. Even the Prince suffered when he went out of the palace. He was
enraged at the inhuman laws of his father. As soon as he became king, he put an end to all
those archaic laws. (214)

1.Stocks: in Europe in the Middle Ages a wooden frame which was fixed around
someone's feet, hands and sometimes head, so that they were forced to sit or stand for a
long time in public as a punishment.

2. condemn: criticise 3. folly: stupidity

4. mob: crowd 5. archaic: old-fashioned

6. satire: to criticize faults 7. sport: game