Answer the following question. Why did the king want no more talk about the hilsa-fish? - English

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Short Note

Answer the following question.

Why did the king want no more talk about the hilsa-fish?

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Solution

The king did not want any more talk about the hilsa-fish because it was the season for hilsa-fish and no one could stop talking about it for even five minutes. He was getting annoyed with all the talk about hilsa-fish.

Concept: Reading
  Is there an error in this question or solution?
Chapter 3.1: Gopal and the Hilsa Fish - Working with the Text [Page 42]

APPEARS IN

NCERT Class 7 English - Honeycomb
Chapter 3.1 Gopal and the Hilsa Fish
Working with the Text | Q 1 | Page 42

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Inspector:   Thank you Ram Singh. We will make sketches on the basis of your
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  DESCRIPTION
Built  
Height  
Clothes  
Shape of the face  
Complexion  
Eyes  
Hair  
Nose  
Lips  
Teeths  
Special Features  

Now read the story

  1. "Ma!" Mrs. Bramble looked up, beaming with a kind of amiable fat-headedness. A domestic creature, wrapped up in Bill, her husband, and Harold, her son. At the present moment only the latter was with her. He sat on the other side of the table, his lips gravely pursed and his eyes a trifle cloudy behind their spectacles. Before him on the red tablecloth lay an open book. His powerful brain was plainly busy.
  2. "Yes, dearie?"
  3.  "Will you hear me?"
  4. Mrs. Bramble took the book.
  5. "Yes, mother will hear you, precious."
  6. A slight frown, marred the smoothness of Harold Bramble's brow. It jarred upon him, this habit of his mother's, of referring to herself in the third person, as if she were addressing a baby, instead of a young man of ten who had taken the spelling and dictation prize last term on his head. 
  7. He cleared his throat and fixed his eyes upon the cut-glass hangings of the chandelier.
  8. "Be good, sweet maid," he began, with the toneless rapidity affected by youths of his age when reciting poetry…..
  9. "You do study so hard, dearie, you'll give yourself a headache. Why don't you take a nice walk by the river for half an hour, and come back nice and fresh?"
  10. The spectacled child considered the point for a moment gravely. Then nodding, he arranged his books in readiness for his return and went out. The front door closed with a decorous softness.
  11. It was a constant source of amazement to Mrs. Bramble that she should have brought such a prodigy as Harold into the world. Harold was so different from ordinary children, so devoted to his books, such a model of behaviour, so altogether admirable. The only drawback was, that his very 'perfection' had made necessary a series of evasions and even deliberate falsehoods, on the part of herself and her husband, highly distasteful to both. They were lovers of truth, but they had realized that there are times when truth must be sacrificed. At any cost, the facts concerning Mr. Bramble's profession must be kept from Harold.
  12. While he was a baby it had not mattered so much. But when he began to move about and take notice, Mrs. Bramble said to Mr. Bramble, "Bill, we must keep it from Harold." A little later, when the child had begun to show signs of being about to become a model of goodness and intelligence, and had already taken two prizes at the Sunday-school, the senior curate of the parish, meeting Mr. Bramble one morning, said nervously-for after all, it was a delicate subject to broach, "Er-Bramble, I think, on the whole, it would be as well to-er-keep it from Harold."
  13. And only the other day, Mrs. Bramble's brother, Major Percy Stokes, dropping in for a cup of tea, had said, "I hope you are keeping it from Harold. It is the least you can do", and had gone on to make one or two remarks about men of wrath which, considering that his cheek-bones were glistening with Mr. Bramble's buttered toast, were in poor taste. But Percy was like that. Enemies said that he liked the sound of his own voice.
  14. Certainly he was very persuasive. Mr. Bramble had fallen in with the suggestion without demur. In private life he was the mildest and most obliging of men, and always yielded to everybody. The very naming of Harold had caused a sacrifice on his part.
  15. When it was certain that he was about to become a father, he had expressed a desire that the child should be named John, if a boy, after Mr John L. Sullivan, or, if a girl, Marie, after Miss Marie Lloyd. But Mrs Bramble saying that Harold was such a sweet name, he had withdrawn his suggestions with the utmost goodhumour.
  16. Nobody could help liking this excellent man which made it all the greater pity that his walk in life was of such a nature that it simply had to be kept from Harold.
  17. He was a professional boxer. That was the trouble.
  18. Before the coming of Harold, he had been proud of being a professional boxer. His ability to paste his fellow-man in the eye while apparently meditating an attack on his stomach, and vice versa, had filled him with that genial glow of self-satisfaction which comes to philanthropists and other benefactors of the species. It had seemed to him a thing on which to congratulate himself that of all London's teeming millions there was not a man, weighing eight stone four, whom he could not overcome in a twenty-round contest. He was delighted to be the possessor of a left hook which had won the approval of the newspapers.
  19. And then Harold had come into his life, and changed him into a furtive practitioner of shady deeds. Before, he had gone about the world with a match-box full of press-notices, which he would extract with a pin and read to casual acquaintances. Now, he quailed at the sight of his name in print, so thoroughly had he become imbued with the necessity of keeping it from Harold.
  20. With an ordinary boy it would not have mattered. However, Harold was different. Secretly proud of him as they were, both Bill and his wife were a little afraid of their wonderful child. The fact was, as Bill himself put it, Harold was showing a bit too much class for them. He had formed a corner in brains, as far as the Bramble family was concerned. They had come to regard him as being of a superior order.
  21. Yet Harold, defying the laws of heredity, had run to intellect as his father had run to  muscle. He had learned to read and write with amazing quickness. He sang in the choir.
  22. And now, at the age of ten, a pupil at a local private school where they wore mortar  boards and generally comported themselves like young dons, he had already won a prize for spelling and dictation. You simply couldn't take a boy like that aside and tell him that the father whom he believed to be a commercial traveller was affectionately known to a large section of the inhabitants of London, as "Young Porky." There were no two ways about it. You had to keep it from him.
  23. So, Harold grew in stature and intelligence, without a suspicion of the real identity of the square-jawed man with the irregularly-shaped nose who came and went mysteriously in their semi-detached, red-brick home. He was a self-centred child, and, accepting the commercial traveller fiction, dismissed the subject from his mind and busied himself with things of more moment. And time slipped by.
  24. Mrs. Bramble, left alone, resumed work on the sock which she was darning. For the first time since Harold had reached years of intelligence she was easy in her mind about the future. A week from tonight would see the end of all her anxieties. On that day Bill would fight his last fight, the twenty-round contest with that American Murphy at the National Sporting Club for which he was now training at the White Hart down the road. He had promised that it would be the last. He was getting on. He was thirty-one, and he said himself that he would have to be chucking the game before it chucked him. His idea was to retire from active work and try for a job as an instructor at one of these big schools or colleges. He had a splendid record for respectability and sobriety and all the other qualities which headmasters demanded in those who taught their young gentlemen to box and several of his friends who had obtained similar posts described the job in question as extremely soft. So that it seemed to Mrs. Bramble, that all might now be considered well. She smiled happily to herself as she darned her sock.
  25. She was interrupted in her meditations by a knock at the front door. She put down her sock and listened.
  26. Martha, the general, pattered along the passage, and then there came the sound of voices speaking in an undertone. Footsteps made themselves heard in the passage. The door opened. The head and shoulders of Major Percy Stokes insinuated themselves into the room.
  27. The Major cocked a mild blue eye at her.
  28. "Harold anywhere about?"
  29. "He's gone out for a nice walk. Whatever brings you here, Percy, so late? "
  30. Percy made no answer. He withdrew his head.
  31. He then reappeared, this time in his entirety, and remained holding the door open. More footsteps in the passage, and through the doorway in a sideways fashion suggestive of a diffident crab, came a short, sturdy, red-headed man with a broken nose and a propitiatory smile, at the sight of whom Mrs. Bramble, dropping her sock, rose as if propelled by powerful machinery, and exclaimed, "Bill!"
  32. Mr. Bramble - for it was he - scratched his head, grinned feebly, and looked for assistance to the Major.
  33. "The scales have fallen from his eyes."
  34. "What scales?" demanded Mrs. Bramble, a literal-minded woman. "And what are you doing here, Bill, when you ought to be at the White Hart, training?"
  35. "That's just what I'm telling you," said Percy. "I’ve been wrestling with Bill, and I have been vouchsafed the victory."
  36. "You!" said Mrs. Bramble, with uncomplimentary astonishment, letting her gaze wander over her brother's weedy form.
  37. "Jerry Fisher's a hard nut," said Mr. Bramble, apologetically. "He don't like people coming round talking to a man he's training, unless he introduces them or they're newspaper gents."
  38. "After that I kept away. But I wrote the letters and I sent the tracts. Bill, which of the tracts was it that snatched you from the primrose path?"
  39. "It wasn't so much the letters, Perce. It was what you wrote about Harold. You see, Jane---"
  40. "Perhaps you'll kindly allow me to get a word in edgeways, you two," said Mrs.Bramble, her temper for once becoming ruffled. "You can stop talking for half an instant, Percy, if you know how, while Bill tells me what he's doing here when he ought to be at the White Hart with Mr. Fisher, doing his bit of training."
  41. Mr. Bramble met her eye and blinked awkwardly.
  42. " Percy's just been telling you, Jane. He wrote---"
  43. "I haven't made head or tail of a single word that Percy's said, and I don't expect to. All I want is a plain answer to a plain question. What are you doing here, Bill, instead of being at the White Hart? "
  44. "I've come home, Jane."
  45. "Glory!" exclaimed the Major.
  46. "Percy, if you don't keep quiet, I'll forget I'm your sister and let you have one. What
    do you mean, Bill, you've come home? Isn't there going to be the fight next week,
    after all?"
  47. "The fight's over," said the unsuppressed Major, joyfully, "and Bill's won, with me
    seconding him."
  48. "Percy!"
  49. Mr. Bramble pulled himself together with a visible effort.
  50. "I'm not going to fight, Jane," he said, in a small voice.
  51. '' You're not going--!"
  52. "He's seen the error of his ways," cried Percy, the resilient."That's what he's gone
    and done. At the eleventh hour."
  53. "Oh! I have waited for this joyful moment. I have watched for it. I---"
  54. "You're not going to fight!"
  55. Mr. Bramble, avoiding his wife's eye, shook his head.
  56. "And how about the money?"
  57. "What's money? " said the Major, scornfully.
  58. "You ought to know," snapped Mrs. Bramble, turning on him. "You've borrowed
    enough of it from me in your time."
  59. The Major waved a hand in wounded silence. He considered the remark in poor
    taste.
  60. "How about the money?" repeated Mrs. Bramble. "Goodness knows I've never liked your profession, Bill, but there is this to be said for it, that it's earned you good money and made it possible for us to give Harold as good an education as any Duke ever had, I'm sure. And you know, you yourself said that the five hundred pounds you were going to get if you beat this Murphy, and even if you lost it would be a hundred and twenty, was going to be a blessing, because it would let us finish him off proper and give him a better start in life than you or me ever had, and now
    you let this Percy come over you with his foolish talk, and now I don't know what will happen."
  61. There was an uncomfortable silence. Even Percy seemed to be at a loss for words. Mrs. Bramble sat down and began to sob. Mr. Bramble shuffled his feet.
  62. "Talking of Harold," said Mr. Bramble at last, " That's , really what I'm driving at. It was him only whom I was thinking of when I hopped it from the White Hart. It would be written up in all the papers, instead of only in the sporting ones. As likely as not there would be a piece about it in the Mail, with a photograph of me. And you know Harold reads his Mail regularly. And then, don't you see, the fat would be in the fire. "That's what Percy pointed out to me, and I seen what he meant, so I hopped it."
  63. "At the eleventh hour," added the Major, rubbing in the point.
  64. "You see, Jane---" Mr. Bramble was beginning, when there was a knock at the door, and a little, ferret-faced man in a woollen sweater and cycling knickerbockers entered, removing as he did so a somewhat battered bowler hat.
  65. "Beg pardon, Mrs. Bramble," he said, " coming in like this. Found the front door ajar, so came in, to ask if you'd happened to have seen-"
  66. He broke off and stood staring wildly at the little group.
  67. "I thought so!" he said, and shot through the air towards Percy.
  68. "Jerry !" said Bill.
  69. "Mr. Fisher!" said Mrs. Bramble,
  70. "Be reasonable," said the Major, diving underneath the table and coming up the other side like a performing seal.
  71. "Let me get at him," begged the intruder, struggling to free himself from Bill's restraining arms.
  72. Mrs. Bramble rapped on the table.
  73. "Kindly remember there's a lady present, Mr. Fisher."
  74. The little man's face became a battlefield on which rage, misery, and a respect for the decencies of social life struggled for mastery.
  75. "It's hard," he said at length, in a choked voice. "I just wanted to break his neck for him, but I suppose it's not to be. I know it's him that's at the bottom of it. And here I find them together, so I know it's him. Well, if you say so, Mrs. B., I suppose I mustn't put a hand on him. But it's hard. Bill, you come back along with me to the White Hart. I'm surprised at you. Ashamed of you, I am. All the time you and me have known each other, I've never known you do such a thing. You are such a pleasure to train as a rule. It all comes of getting with bad companions."
  76. Mr. Bramble looked at his brother-in-law miserably.
  77. "You tell him," he said.
  78. "You tell him, Jane," said the Major.
  79. "I won't," said Mrs. Bramble.
  80. "Tell him what? " asked the puzzled trainer.
  81. "Well?"
  82. "It's only that I'm not going to fight on Monday."
  83. "What!"
  84. "Bill has seen a sudden bright light," said Percy, edging a few inches to the left, so that the table was exactly between the trainer and himself. "At the eleventh hour, he has turned from his wicked ways. You ought to be singing with joy, Mr. Fisher, if you really loved Bill. This ought to be the happiest evening you've ever known. You ought to be singing like a little child."
  85. A strange, guttural noise escaped the trainer. It may have been a song, but it did not sound like it.
  86. "It's true, Jerry," said Bill, unhappily. "I have been thinking it over, and I'm not going to fight on Monday."
  87. "Glory!" said the Major, tactlessly.
  88. Jerry Fisher's face was a study in violent emotions. His eyes seemed to protrude from their sockets like a snail's. He clutched the tablecloth.
  89. "I'm sorry, Jerry," said Bill. " I know it's hard on you. But I've got to think of Harold. This fight with Jimmy Murphy being what you might call a kind of national affair, in a way of speaking, will be reported in The Mail as like as not, with a photograph of me, and Harold reads The Mail regular. We've been keeping it from him all these years that I'm in the profession, and we can't let him know now. He would die of shame, Jerry."
  90. Tears appeared in Jerry Fisher's eyes.
  91. "Bill," he cried, " you're off your head. Think of the purse!"
  92. "Ah!" said Mrs. Bramble.
  93. "Think of all the swells that'll be coming to see you. Think of what the papers'll say. Think of me."
  94. "I know, Jerry, it's chronic. But Harold---"
  95. "Think of all the trouble you've taken for the last few weeks getting yourself into condition."
  96. "I know. But Har---"
  97. "You can't not fight on Monday."
  98. "But Harold, Jerry. He'd die of the disgrace of it. He ain't like you and me, Jerry. He's a little gentleman. I got to think of Harold"
  99. "What about me, pa?" said a youthful voice at the door; and Bill's honest blood froze at the sound. His jaw fell, and he goggled dumbly.
  100. There, his spectacles gleaming in the gaslight, his cheeks glowing with the exertion of the nice walk, his eyebrows slightly elevated with surprise, stood Harold himself.
  101. "Halloa, pa! Halloa, Uncle Percy! Somebody's left the front door open. What were you saying about thinking about me, pa? Ma, will you hear me, my piece of poetry again? I think I've forgotten it."
  102. The four adults surveyed the innocent child in silence.
  103. On the faces of three of them consternation was written. In the eyes of the fourth, Mr. Fisher, there glittered that nasty, steely expression of the man, who sees his way to getting a bit of his own back, Mr. Fisher's was not an un-mixedly chivalrous nature. He considered that he had been badly treated, and what he wanted most at the moment was revenge. He had been fond and proud of Bill Bramble, but those emotions belonged to the dead past. Just at present, he felt that he disliked Bill rather more than anyone else in the world, with the possible exception of Major Percy Stokes.
  104. "So you're Harold, are you, Tommy? " he said, in a metallic voice." Then just you listen here a minute."
  105. "Jerry," cried Bill, advancing, "you keep your mouth shut, or I'll dot you one."
  106. Mr. Fisher retreated and, grasping a chair, swung it above his head.
  107. "You better! " he said, curtly.
  108. ''Mr. Fisher, do be a gentleman," entreated Mrs. Bramble.
  109. "My dear sir." There was a crooning winningness in Percy's voice. "My dear sir, do nothing hasty. Think before you speak. Don't go and be so silly as to act like a mutton-head. I'd be ashamed to be so spiteful. Respect a father's feelings."
  110. "Tommy," said Mr. Fisher, ignoring them all, "you think your pa's a commercial. He ain't. He's a fighting-man, doing his eight-stone-four ringside, and known to all the heads as ' Young Porky.' "
  111. Bill sank into a chair. He could see Harold's round eyes staring at him.
  112. "I'd never have thought it of you, Jerry," he said, miserably. "If anyone had come to me and told me that you could have acted so raw I'd have dotted him one."
  113. "And if anyone had come to me and told me that I should live to see the day when you broke training a week before a fight at the National, I'd given him one for himself."
  114. "Harold, my lad," said Percy, "you mustn't think none the worse of your pa for having been a man of wrath. He hadn't seen the bright light then. It's all over now. He's given it up for ever, and there's no call for you to feel ashamed."
  115. Bill seized on the point.
  116. "That's right, Harold," he said, reviving, "I've given it up. I was going to fight an American named Murphy at the National next Monday, but I ain't going to now, not if they come to me on their bended knees. Not even if the King of England came to me on his bended knees."
  117. Harold drew a deep breath.
  118. "Oh!" he cried, shrilly. "Oh, aren't you? Then what about my two bob? What about my two bob, I've betted Dicky Saunders that Jimmy Murphy won't last ten rounds?"
  119. He looked round the room wrathfully.
  120. "It's thick," he said in the crisp, gentlemanly, voice of which his parents were so proud. "It's jolly thick. That's what it is. A chap takes the trouble to study form and saves up his pocket-money to have a bet on a good thing, and then he goes and gets let down like this. It may be funny to you, but I call it rotten. And another thing I call rotten is you having kept it from me all this time that you were 'Young Porky,' pa. That's what I call so jolly rotten! There's a fellow at our school who goes about swanking in the most rotten way because he once got Phil Scott's autograph. Fellows look up to him most awfully, and all the time they might have been doing it to me. That's what makes me so jolly sick. How long do you suppose they'd go on calling me, 'Goggles' if they knew that you were my father? They'd chuck it tomorrow, and look up to me like anything, I do call it rotten. And chucking it up like this is the limit. What do you want to do it for? It's the silliest idea, I've ever heard. Why, if you beat Jimmy Murphy they'll have to give you the next chance with Sid
    Sampson for the Lonsdale belt. Jimmy beat Ted Richards, and Ted beat the Ginger Nut, and the Ginger Nut only lost on a foul to Sid Sampson, and you beat Ted Richards, so they couldn't help letting you have the next go at Sid."
  121. Mr. Fisher beamed approval.
  122. "If I've told your pa that once, I've told him twenty times," he said. "You certainly know a thing or two, Tommy."
  123. "Well, I've made a study of it since I was a kid, so I jolly well ought to. All the fellows at our place are frightfully keen on it. One chap's got a snapshot of Jimmy Wilde. At least, he says it's Jimmy Wilde, but I believe it's just some ordinary fellow. Anyhow, it's jolly blurred, so it might be anyone. Pa, can't you give me a picture of yourself boxing? I could swank like anything. And you don't know how sick a chap gets of having chaps call him, 'Goggles.' "
  124. "Bill," said Mr. Fisher, "you and me had better be getting back to the White Hart."
  125. Bill rose and followed him without a word.
  126. Harold broke the silence which followed their departure. The animated expression which had been on his face as he discussed the relative merits of Sid Sampson and the Ginger Nut had given place to the abstracted gravity of the student.
  127. "Ma!"
  128. Mrs. Bramble started convulsively.
  129. "Yes, dearie?"
  130. "Will you hear me? "
  131. Mrs. Bramble took the book.
  132. ''Yes, mother will hear you, precious," she said, mechanically.
  133. Harold fixed his eyes upon the cut-glass hangings of the chandelier.
  134. "Be good, sweet maid, and let who will be clever-clever. Do noble things.. "

About the Author
Sir Pelham Grenville Wodehouse, KBE (15 October 1881 - 14 February 1975) was a comic writer who enjoyed enormous popular success during his career as an acknowledged master of English prose. Wodehouse has been admired both by his contemporaries such as Hilaire Belloc, Evelyn Waugh and Rudyard Kipling and by modern writers such as Douglas Adams, Salman Rushdie, Zadie Smith and Terry Pratchett.
Best known today for his Jeeves and Blandings Castle novels and short stories, Wodehouse was also a playwright and lyricist who was part author and writer of 15 plays and of 250 lyrics for some 30 musical comedies. He worked with Cole Porter on the musical 'Anything Goes' (1934) and frequently collaborated with Jerome Kern and Guy Bolton. He wrote the lyrics for the hit song "Bill" in Kern's Show Boat (1927), wrote the lyrics for the Gershwin - Romberg’s musical Rosalie (1928) and collaborated with Rudolf Friml on a musical version of The Three Musketeers (1928).


Read the following statement and imagine you are Jack.
"I can't afford to, after what Jack's done to his teeth."
What is it, you think, you can not afford to do and why? Write a diary entry of not
less than 125 words.
(In-class activity; not to be set up as homework).


 Now, read the play.
List of Characters.

Julliette - The owner of the villa
Maid - Juliette’s maid
Gaston - A shrewd businessman
Jeanne - His young wife
Mrs Al Smith - A rich American lady

Maid: Won't Madame be sorry?
Juliette: Not at all. Mind you, if someone had bought it on the very day I placed it for sale, then I might have felt sorry because I would have wondered if I hadn't been a fool to sell at all. But the sign has been hanging on the gate for over a month now and I am beginning to be afraid that the day I bought it, was when I was the real fool.
Maid: All the same, Madame, when they brought you the 'For Sale' sign, you wouldn't let them put it up. You waited until it was night. Then you went and hung it yourself, Madame.
Juliette: I know! You see, I thought that as they could not read it in the dark, the house would belong to me for one more night. I was so sure that the next day the entire world would be fighting to purchase it. For the first week, I was annoyed every time I passed that 'Villa for Sale' sign. The neighbours seemed to look at me in such a strange kind of way that I began to think the whole thing was going to be much more of a sell than a sale. That was a month ago and now, I have only one thought, that is to get the wretched place off my hands. I would sacrifice it at any price. One hundred thousand francs if necessary and that's only twice what it cost me. I thought, I would get two hundred thousand but I suppose I must cut my loss. Besides, in the past two weeks, four people almost bought it, so I have begun to feel as though it no longer belongs to me. Oh! I'm fed up with the place, because nobody really wants it! What time did those agency people say the lady would call?
Maid: Between four and five, Madame.
Juliette: Then we must wait for her.
Maid: It was a nice little place for you to spend the weekends, Madame.
Juliette: Yes . . . but times are hard and business is as bad as it can be.
Maid: In that case, Madame, is it a good time to sell?
Juliette: No, perhaps not. But still. . . there are moments in life when it's the right time to buy, but it's never the right time to sell. For fifteen years everybody has had money at the same time and nobody wanted to sell. Now nobody has any money and nobody wants to buy. But still. .. even so ... it would be funny if I couldn't manage to sell a place here, a stone's throw from Joinville, the French Hollywood, when all I'm asking is a paltry hundred thousand!

Maid: That reminds me, there is a favour I want to ask you, Madame.
Juliette: Yes, what is it my girl?
Maid: Will you be kind enough to let me off between nine and noon tomorrow morning?
Juliette: From nine till noon?
Maid: They have asked me to play in a film at the Joinville Studio.
Juliette: You are going to act for the cinema?
Maid: Yes, Madame.
Juliette: What kind of part are you going to play?
Maid: A maid, Madame. They prefer the real article. They say maids are born; maids not made maids. They are giving me a hundred francs a morning for doing it.
Juliette: One hundred francs!
Maid: Yes, Madame. And as you only pay me four hundred a month, I can't very well refuse, can I, Madame?
Juliette: A hundred francs! It's unbelievable!
Maid: Will you permit me, Madame, to tell you something I've suddenly thought of?
Juliette: What?
Maid: They want a cook in the film as well. They asked me if I knew of anybody suitable. You said just now, Madame, that times were hard. ... Would you like me to get you the engagement?
Juliette: What?
Maid: Every little helps, Madame. Especially, Madame, as you have such a funny face.
Juliette: Thank you.
Maid (taking no notice). They might take you on for eight days, Madame. That would mean
eight hundred francs. It's really money for nothing. You would only have to peel
potatoes one minute and make an omlette the next, quite easy. I could show you
how to do it, Madame.
Juliette: But how kind of you. ... Thank God I'm not quite so hard up as that yet!
Maid: Oh, Madame, I hope you are not angry with me ?
Juliette: Not in the least.
Maid: You see, Madame, film acting is rather looked up to round here. Everybody wants to do it. Yesterday the butcher didn't open his shop, he was being shot all the morning. Today, nobody could find the four policemen, they were taking part in Monsieur Milton's fight scene in his new film. Nobody thinks about anything else round here now. You see, they pay so well. The manager is offering a thousand francs for a real beggar who has had nothing to eat for two days. Some people have all the luck! Think it over, Madame.
Juliette: Thanks, I will.
Maid: If you would go and see them with your hair slicked back the way you do when you are dressing, Madame, I am sure they would engage you right away. Because really, Madame, you look too comical!
Juliette: Thank you! (The bell rings.) I am going upstairs for a moment. If that is the lady, tell
her I will not be long. It won't do to give her the impression that I am waiting for her.
Maid: Very good, Madame. (Exit JULIETTE, as she runs off to open the front door.) Oh, if I could become a Greta Garbo! Why can't I? Oh! (Voices heard off, a second later, the MAID returns showing in GASTON and JEANNE.)
Maid: If you will be kind enough to sit down, I will tell Madame you are here.
Jeanne: Thank you.
(Exit MAID)
Gaston: And they call that a garden! Why, it's a yard with a patch of grass in the middle!
Jeanne: But the inside of the house seems very nice, Gaston.
Gaston: Twenty-five yards of Cretonne and a dash of paint… you can get that anywhere.
Jeanne: That's not fair. Wait until you've seen the rest of it.
Gaston: Why should I? I don't want to see the kitchen to know that the garden is a myth and that the salon is impossible.
Jeanne: What's the matter with it?
Gaston: Matter? Why, you can't even call it a salon.
Jeanne: Perhaps there is another.
Gaston: Never mind the other. I'm talking about this one.
Jeanne: We could do something very original with it.
Gaston: Yes, make it an annex to the garden.
Jeanne: No, but a kind of study.
Gaston: A study? Good Lord! You're not thinking of going in for studying are you?
Jeanne: Don't be silly! You know perfectly well what a modern study is.  Gaston: No, I don't.
Jeanne: Well . .. er.. . it's a place where . .. where one gathers . ..
Gaston: Where one gathers what?
Jeanne: Don't be aggravating, please! If you don't want the house, tell me so at once and we'll say no more about it.
Gaston: I told you before we crossed the road that I didn't want it. As soon as you see a sign 'Villa for Sale', you have to go inside and be shown over it.
Jeanne: But we are buying a villa, aren't we?
Gaston: We are not!
Jeanne: What do you mean, 'We are not'? Then we're not looking for a villa?
Gaston: Certainly not. It's just an idea you've had stuck in your head for the past month.
Jeanne: But we've talked about nothing else....
Gaston: You mean, you've talked about nothing else. I've never talked about it. You see, you've talked about it so much, that you thought that we are talking. . .. You haven't even noticed that I've never joined in the conversation. If you say that you are looking for a villa, then that's different!
Jeanne: Well... at any rate . . . whether I'm looking for it or we're looking for it, the one thingthat matters anyway is that I'm looking for it for us!
Gaston: It's not for us . . . it's for your parents. You are simply trying to make me buy a villa so that you can put your father and your mother in it. You see, I know you. If you got what you want, do you realize what would happen? We would spend the month of August in the villa, but your parents would take possession of it every year from the beginning of April until the end of September. What's more, they would bring the whole tribe of your sister's children with them. No! I am very fond of your family, but not quite so fond as that.
Jeanne: Then why have you been looking over villas for the past week?
Gaston: I have not been looking over them, you have, and it bores me.
Jeanne: Well...
Gaston: Well what?
Jeanne: Then stop being bored and buy one. That will finish it. We won't talk about it any
more.
Gaston: Exactly!
Jeanne: As far as that goes, what of it? Suppose I do want to buy a villa for papa and mamma? What of it? 

Gaston: My darling. I quite admit that you want to buy a villa for your father and mother. But
please admit on your side that I don't want to pay for it.
Jeanne: There's my dowry.
Gaston: Your dowry! My poor child, we have spent that long ago.
Jeanne: But since then you have made a fortune.
Gaston: Quite so. I have, but you haven't. Anyway, there's no use discussing it. I will not buy a villa and that ends it.
Jeanne: Then it wasn't worth while coming in.
Gaston: That's exactly what I told you at the door.
Jeanne: In that case, let's go.
Gaston: By all means.
Jeanne: What on earth will the lady think of us.
Gaston: I have never cared much about anybody's opinion. Come along. (He takes his hat and goes towards the door. At this moment JULIETTE enters.)
Juliette: Good afternoon, Madame... Monsieur....
Jeanne: How do you do, Madame?
Gaston: Good day.
Juliette: Won't you sit down? (All three of them sit.) Is your first impression a good one?
Jeanne: Excellent.
Juliette: I am not in the least surprised. It is the most delightful little place. Its appearance is modest, but it has a charm of its own. I can tell by just looking at you that it would suit you admirably, as you suit it, if you will permit me to say so. Coming from me, it may surprise you to hear that you already appear to be at home. The choice of a frame is not so easy when you have such a delightful pastel to place in it. (She naturally indicates JEANNE who is flattered.) The house possesses a great many advantages. Electricity, gas, water, telephone, and drainage. The bathroom is beautifully fitted and the roof was entirely repaired last year.
Jeanne: Oh, that is very important, isn't it, darling?
Gaston: For whom?
Juliette: The garden is not very large . . . it's not long and it's not wide, but…
Gaston: But my word, it is high!

Juliette: That's not exactly what I meant. Your husband is very witty, Madame. As I was saying, the garden is not very large, but you see, it is surrounded by other gardens. . . .
Gaston: On the principle of people who like children and haven't any, can always go and live near a school.
Jeanne: Please don't joke, Gaston. What this lady says is perfectly right. Will you tell me, Madame, what price you are asking for the villa?
Juliette: Well, you see, I must admit, quite frankly, that I don't want to sell it any more.
Gaston : (rising) Then there's nothing further to be said about it.
Juliette: Please, I...
Jeanne: Let Madame finish, my dear.
Juliette: Thank you. I was going to say that for exceptional people like you, I don't mind giving it up. One arranges a house in accordance with one's own tastes - if you understand what I mean - to suit oneself, as it were - so one would not like to think that ordinary people had come to live in it. But to you, I can see with perfect assurance, I agree. Yes, I will sell it to you.
Jeanne: It's extremely kind of you.
Gaston: Extremely. Yes ... but ...er… what's the price, Madame?
Juliette: You will never believe it...
Gaston: I believe in God and so you see ...
Juliette: Entirely furnished with all the fixtures, just as it is, with the exception of that one
little picture signed by Carot. I don't know if you have ever heard of that painter,
have you ?
Gaston: No, never.
Juliette: Neither have I. But I like the colour and I want to keep it, if you don't mind. For the villa itself, just as it stands, two hundred and fifty thousand francs. I repeat, that I would much rather dispose of it at less than its value to people like yourselves, than to give it up, even for more money, to someone whom I didn't like. The price must seem...
Gaston: Decidedly excessive....
Juliette: Oh, no!
Gaston: Oh, yes, Madame.
Juliette: Well, really, I must say I'm.. Quite so, life is full of surprises, isn't it?
Juliette: You think it dear at two hundred and fifty thousand? Very well, I can't be fairer than this, Make me an offer.
Gaston: If I did, it would be much less than that.
Juliette: Make it anyway.
Gaston: It's very awkward ... I... Jeanne. Name some figures, darling .., just to please me.
Gaston: Well I hardly know ... sixty thousand....
Jeanne: Oh!
Juliette: Oh!
Gaston: What do you mean by 'Oh!'? It isn't worth more than that to me.
Juliette: I give you my word of honour, Monsieur, I cannot let it go for less than two hundred thousand.
Gaston: You have perfect right to do as you please, Madame.
Juliette: I tell you what I will do. I will be philanthropic and let you have it for two hundred thousand.
Gaston: And I will be equally good-natured and let you keep it for the same price.
Juliette: In that case, there is nothing more to be said, Monsieur.
Gaston: Good day, Madame.
Jeanne: One minute, darling. Before you definitely decide, I would love you to go over the upper floor with me.
Juliette: I will show it to you with the greatest pleasure. This way, Madame. This way, Monsieur. . .
Gaston: No, thank you . . . really... I have made up my mind and I'm not very fond of
climbing stairs.
Juliette: Just as you wish, Monsieur. (To JEANNE.) Shall I lead the way?
Jeanne: If you please, Madame.
(Exit JULIETTE)
Jeanne (to her husband): You're not over-polite, are you? 

Gaston: Oh, my darling! For Heaven's sake, stop worrying me about this shanty. Go and
examine the bathroom and come back quickly.
(Exit JEANNE following JULIETTE)
Gaston (to himself): Two hundred thousand for a few yards of land . . . She must be thinking I'm crazy. . . . (The door bell rings and, a moment later, the MAID re-enters showing in Mrs Al Smith)
Maid: If Madame would be kind enough to come in. Mrs Al Smith: See here, now I tell you I'm in a hurry. How much do they want for this house?
Maid: I don't know anything about it, Madame. Mrs Al Smith: To start off with, why isn't the price marked on the signboard? You French people have a cute way of doing business! You go and tell your boss that if he doesn't come right away, I'm going. I haven't any time to waste. Any hold up makes me sick when I want something. (MAID goes out.) Oh, you're the husband, I suppose. Good afternoon. Do you speak American?
Gaston: Sure . . . You betcha. Mrs Al Smith: That goes by me. How much for this house?
Gaston: How much?... Well... Won't you sit down? Mrs Al Smith: I do things standing up.
Gaston: Oh! Do you? Mrs Al Smith: Yes! Where's your wife?
Gaston: My wife? Oh, she's upstairs. Mrs Al Smith: Well, she can stay there. Unless you have to consult her before you make a sale?
Gaston: Me? Not on your life! Mrs Al Smith: You are an exception. Frenchmen usually have to consult about ten people before they get a move on. Listen! Do you or don't you want to sell
this house?
Gaston: I? ... Oh, I'd love to! Mrs Al Smith: Then what about it? I haven't more than five minutes to spare.

Gaston: Sit down for three of them anyway. To begin with, this villa was built by my
grandfather...
Mrs Al Smith: I don't care a darn about your grandfather!
Gaston: Neither do I. ... But I must tell you that... er...

Mrs Al Smith: Listen, just tell me the price.
Gaston: Let me explain that... Mrs Al Smith: No!
Gaston: We have electricity, gas, telephone...
Mrs Al Smith: I don't care! What's the price?
Gaston: But you must go over the house...
Mrs Al Smith: No!... I want to knock it down and build a bungalow here.
Gaston: Oh, I see!
Mrs Al Smith: Yep! It's the land I want. I have to be near Paramount where I'm going to shoot some films.
Gaston: Oh!
Mrs Al Smith: Yep. You see I'm a big star.
Gaston: Not really?
Mrs Al Smith: (amiably): Yes! How do you do? Well now, how much?
Gaston: Now let's see. ... In that case, entirely furnished, with the exception of that little picture by an unknown artist ... it belonged to my grandfather and I want to keep it. ...
Mrs Al Smith: Say! You do love your grandparents in Europe!
Gaston: We have had them for such a long time!
Mrs Al Smith: You folk are queer. You think about the past all the time. We always think about the future.
Gaston: Everybody thinks about what he's got.
Mrs Al Smith: What a pity you don't try and copy us more.
Gaston: Copies are not always good. We could only imitate you and imitations are no better than parodies. We are so different. Think of it.... Europeans go to America to earn money and Americans come to Europe to spend it.

Mrs Al Smith: Just the same, you ought to learn how to do business
Gaston: We are learning now. We are practising...
Mrs Al Smith: Well then, how much?
Gaston: The house! Let me see. ... I should say three hundred thousand francs. . . . The same for everybody, you know. Even though you are an American, I wouldn't dream of raising the price.
Mrs Al Smith: Treat me the same as anybody. Then you say it is three hundred thousand?
Gaston (to himself): Since you are dear bought - I will love you dear.
Mrs Al Smith: Say you, what do you take me for?
Gaston: Sorry. That's Shakespeare. ... I mean cash. . ,
Mrs Al Smith: Now I get you . . . cash down! Say! You're coming on. (She takes her cheque book from her bag.)
Gaston (fumbling in a drawer): Wait... I never know where they put my pen and ink...
Mrs Al Smith: Let me tell you something, you'd better buy yourself a fountain pen with the money you get for the villa. What date is it today?
Gaston: The twenty- fourth.
Mrs Al Smith: You can fill in your name on the cheque yourself. I live at the Ritz Hotel., Place Vendome. My lawyer is...
Gaston: Who ...?
Mrs Al Smith: Exactly!
Gaston: What?
Mrs Al Smith: My lawyer is Mr. Who, 5, Rue Cambon. He will get in touch
with yours about the rest of the transaction. Good-bye.
Gaston: Good-bye.
Mrs. Al Smith: When are you leaving?
Gaston: Well...er ... I don't quite know . . . whenever you like.
Mrs. Al Smith: Make it tomorrow and my architect can come on Thursday. Good-bye. I'm
delighted.

Gaston: Delighted to hear it, Madame. (She goes and he looks at the cheque.) It's a very good thing in business when everyone is delighted! (At that moment, JEANNE and JULIETTE return)
Gaston: Well?
Jeanne: Well... of course ...it's very charming. ...
Juliette: Of course, as I told you, it's not a large place. I warned you. There are two large bedrooms and one small one.
Gaston: Well now! That's something.
Jeanne : (to her husband). You are quite right, darling. I'm afraid it would not be suitable. Thank you, Madame, we need not keep you any longer.
Juliette: Oh, that's quite alright.
Gaston: Just a moment, just a moment, my dear. You say there are two large bedrooms and a small one....
Juliette: Yes, and two servants' rooms.
Gaston: Oh! There are two servants' rooms in addition, are there?
Juliette: Yes.
Gaston: But that's excellent!
Juliette: Gaston, stop joking!
Gaston: And the bathroom? What's that like?
Juliette: Perfect! There's a bath in it. ...
Gaston: Oh, there's a bath in the bathroom, is there?
Juliette: Of course there is!
Gaston: It's all very important. A bathroom with a bath in it. Bedrooms, two large and one small, two servants' rooms and a garden. It's really possible. While you were upstairs, I have been thinking a lot about your papa and mamma. You see, I am really unselfish, and then the rooms for your sister's children. . . . Also, my dear, I've been thinking . . . and this is serious... about our old age. . . . It's bound to come sooner or later and the natural desire of old age is a quiet country life. . . . (To JULIETTE:) You said two hundred thousand, didn't you?
Jeanne: What on earth are you driving at?
Gaston: Just trying to please you, darling.
Juliette: Yes, two hundred thousand is my lowest. Cash, of course.

Gaston: Well, that's fixed. I won't argue about it. (He takes out his cheque book.)
Juliette: But there are so many things to be discussed before…
Gaston: Not at all. Only one thing. As I am not arguing about the price, as I'm not bargaining with you . . . well, you must be nice to me, you must allow me to keep this little picture which has kept me company while you and my wife went upstairs.
Juliette: It's not a question of value...
Gaston: Certainly not . . . just as a souvenir...
Juliette: Very well, you may keep it.
Gaston: Thank you, Madame. Will you give me a receipt, please? Our lawyers will draw up the details of the sale. Please fill in your name. . . . Let us see, it's the twenty-third, isn't it?
Juliette: No, the twenty-fourth. . . .
Gaston: What does it matter? One day more or less. (She signs the receipt and exchanges it for his cheque.) Splendid!
Juliette: Thank you, Monsieur.
Gaston: Here is my card. Good-bye, Madame. Oh, by the way, you will be kind enough to leave tomorrow morning, won't you.
Juliette: Tomorrow! So soon?
Gaston: Well, say tomorrow evening at the latest.
Juliette: Yes, I can manage that. Good-bye Madame.
Jeanne: Good day, Madame.
Gaston: I'll take my little picture with me, if you don't mind? (He unhooks it.) Just a beautiful souvenir, you know. .
Juliette: Very well. I'll show you the garden, on the way out.
(Exit JULIETTE)
Jeanne: What on earth have you done?
Gaston: I? I made a hundred thousand francs and a Carot!
Jeanne: But how?
Gaston: I'll tell you later.
CURTAIN

About the Author
Sacha Guitry (1885-1957) son of a French actor, was born in St. Petersburg (Later
Leningrad) which accounts for his Russian first name. Given his father's profession,
he became a writer of plays and films. Some of his own experiences with people
engaged in film production may be reflected in Villa for Sale.
Guitry was clever, irrepressible and a constant source of amusement. He claimed that
he staged a 'one-man revolt' against the dismal French theatre of his time. He was
equally successful on screen and stage. Besides being a talented author and actor, he
earned recognition as a highly competent producer and director.


The world's most famous female aviator, Amelia Earhart, disappeared in 1937, as she attempted to become the first woman to fly around the world with her navigator, Fred Noonan. She was last heard when she was around 100 miles from the tiny Pacific Howland Island on July 2, 1937. 

Read the story of her 'Final Flight'. 

On June 1, 1937 Amelia and her navigator Fred Noonan departed from Miami, Florida; bound for California. Their first destination was San Juan, Puerto Rico; from there, skirting the northeast edge of South America; and then on to Africa and the Red Sea. 

The flight to Karachi was another first. No one had previously flown non-stop from the Red Sea to India before. From Karachi, the Electra flew to Calcutta on June 17 from there on, to Rangoon, Bangkok, Singapore and Bandoeng. 

The monsoon prevented departure from Bandoeng for several days. Repairs were made on some of the 'long distance' instruments which had given trouble previously. During this time, Amelia became ill, and suffered from dysentery that lasted several days. 

It was June 27 before Amelia and Noonan were able to leave Bandoeng for Port Darwin, Australia. At Darwin, the direction finder was repaired, and the parachutes were packed and shipped home as they would be of no value over the Pacific .

Amelia reached Lae in New Guinea on June 29. At this point they had flown 22,000 miles and there were 7,000 more to go over the Pacific. Amelia cabled her last commissioned article to the Herald Tribune. Photos show her looking very tired and ill during her time at Lac.

The U.S. Coast Guard cutter, Itasca had been standing off Howland Island for some day to act as a radio contact for Amelia Radio communications in the area were very poor as Itasca was overwhelmed with commercial radio traffic that the flight had generated . 

Amelie left Lae at preciaely 00:00 hours Greenwich Mean Time on July 2 . It is believed that the Electra was loaded with 1,000 gallons of fuel , allowing for 20-21 hours of flying .
At 07:20 hours GMT Amelia provided a position report placing the Electra on course as some 20 miles southwest of the Nukumanu Islands . The last weather report Amelia was known to have received was before take-off . The head wind speed had increased by 10-12 mph, but it is not known if she ever received the report.
At 08:00 GMT Amelia made her last radio contact with Lae . she reported being on course for Howland Island at 12,000 feet . There is no real evidence as to the precise track of the aircraft after Nukumanu . No one saw or heard the plane fly over .
Several short transmissions were received by the Itasca with varying signal strengths but they were unable to get a fix on her location because they were too brief. At 19:30 GMT the following transmission was received from the Electra at maximum strength. 
"KHAQQ calling Itasca. We must be on you but cannot see you ... gas is running low ... " 

At 20: 14 GMT, the Itasca received the last voice transmission from Amelia giving positioning data. The Itasca continued to transmit on all frequencies until 21:30 hours GMT. They determined that Amelia must have died at sea and began to implement search procedures. 

It has been determined that the plane went down some 35-100 miles off the coast of Howland Island. A life raft was stowed on board but no trace was ever found of the raft. Some experts felt that the empty fuel tanks could keep the plane afloat for a period of time. 

President Roosevelt authorized a search party of 9 naval ships and 66 aircrafts at an estimated cost of over $4 million. On July 18, the search was abandoned by ships in the Howland area. George continued to seek help in the search, but by October he too abandoned all hope of finding them alive. 

Amelia had been sending letters to George at stopovers all along her route quite regularly. These were published in the book 'Last Flight'. The book has a note from her to George .... 
"Please know I am quite aware of the hazards ... I want to do it because I want to do it. Women must try to do things as men have tried. If they fail, their failure must be, but a challenge to others. " 

Amelia created a number of aviation records : 
o The first woman to fly across the Atlantic in 1928 
o The second person to fly solo across the Atlantic in 1932 
o The first person to fly solo from Hawaii to California in 1935 Guided by her publicist and husband, George Putnam, she made headlines in an era when aviation had gripped the public's imagination. 


Read this article about the great Indian Rhinoceros. [You will find the information useful for your group discussion in 5.] 

The Indian Rhinoceros or the Great One-Horned Rhinoceros or the Asian Onehorned Rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicomis) is a large mammal primarily found in north-eastern India, Nepal and parts of Bhutan. It is confined to the tall grasslands and forests in the foothills of the Himalayas. 
The Indian Rhinoceros once ranged throughout the entire stretch of the Indo Gangetic Plain but excessive hunting reduced their natural habitat drastically. 

Today, about 3,000 Indian Rhinos live in the wild, 1,800 of which are found in Assam alone. In 2008, more than 400 Indian Rhinos were sighted in Nepal's Chitwan National Park. 
In size it is equal to that of the White Rhino in Africa; together they are the largest of all rhino species. The Great One-Horned Rhinoceros has a single horn; this is present in both males and females, but not on newborn young. In most adults, the horn reachee a length of about 25 centimetres, but has been recorded up to 57 .2 centimetres in length. The nasal hom curves backwards from the nose. The horn is naturally black. 
This prehistoric-looking rhinoceros bas thick, silver-brown skin which becomes pinkish near the large skin folds that cover its body. The male develops thick neckfolds. It has very little body hair aside from eyelashes, ear-fringes and tail-brush. 
These rhinos live in tall grasslands and riverine forests, but due to the loss of habitat, they have been forced towards cultivated land. They are mostly solitary creatures, with the exception of mothers and calves and breeding pairs, although they sometimes, congregate at bathing areas.

The Indian Rhinoceros makes a wide variety of vocalizations. At least ten distinct vocalizations have been identified: snorting, honking, bleating, roaring, squeak panting, moo-grunting, shrieking, groaning, rumbling and humphing. In addition to noises, the rhino also uses olfactory communication. 
In aggregation, Indian Rhinos are often friendly. They will often greet each other by waving or bobbing their heads, mounting flanks, nuzzling noses, or licking. Rhinos will playfully spar, run around, and play with twigs in their mouth. Adult males are the primary instigators of fights. Fights between dominant males are the most common cause of rhino mortality. Indian rhinos have few natural enemies, except for tigers. Tigers sometimes kill unguarded calves, but adult rhinos are less vulnerable due to their size. Humans are the only other animal threat, hunting the rhinoceros primarily for sport or for the use of its horn. Indian Rhinos have been somewhat tamed and trained in circuses, but they remain dangerous and unpredictable animals. 
In the nineteenth and early twentieth century, the Indian Rhinoceros was hunted relentlessly. Reports from the middle of the nineteenth century claim that some military officers in Assam individually shot more than 200 rhinos. In the early 1900s, officials became concerned at the rhinos' plummeting numbers. By 1908 in Kaziranga, one of the Rhinos' main ranges, the population had fallen to around 12 individuals. In 1910, all rhino hunting in India became prohibited. 
The rhino has been a major success in conservation. Only 100 remained in the early 1900s; a century later, their population has increased to about 2500 again, but even so, the species is still endangered. The Indian rhino is illegally poached for its horn. Some cultures in East Asia believe that the hair has healing and potency powers and therefore is used for traditional Chinese medicine and other Oriental medicines. 
The Indian and Nepalese Governments have taken major steps towards Indian Rhinoceros conservation with the help of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). The Kaziranga National Park and Manas National Park in Assam, Pobitora Reserve Forest in Assam {having the highest Indian rhino density in the world), Orang National Park of Assam, Laokhowa Reserve Forest of Assam (having a very small population) and Royal Chitwan National Park in Nepal are homes to this endangered animal. 


Listen to the extract on Tigers read by teacher/ student which is given below , and as you listen, complete the summary given below. 

Save Tigers 
The price of human greed is being paid by yet another animal species the Tiger. Today the tiger population is getting depleted at an alarming rate. According to a recent survey, one tiger is being poached everyday. If the present state of affairs is allowed to continue, the next generation will not get to see the majestic animal even in the zoo. 
It is high time that action is taken to protect and conserve the tigers in order to maintain the ecological balance. Stringent laws against poachers must be enforced. It is over 40 years since the tigers became our national animal. As a result, the species was to be protected. Ironically, they are closer to extinction now than ever before. Children, scientists, conservationists, NGOs and institutions in India and world wide have put their heart and soul into trying to save the tiger. Yet there is little we all have been able to do. The responsibility and the power of protection lies with the government, specifically the forest department. 
Let us not forget that if we destroy nature, ultimately we will be destroyed ourselves. 
Tiger, an apex predator is an indicator of our ecosystem's health. Saving the tiger means we save the forest, since tiger cannot live in places where trees have vanished, and in turn secure food and water for all. 
Tigers are now an endangered species. Today there are about 5000 to 7,400 left in the world. Three types of tigers - The Bali, Javan and Caspian tigers have become extinct. The two reasons why tigers are endangered are: Habitat loss and illegal killing. 
Illegal Killing 
One of the most concerning threat to our national animal that needs to be recognised is poaching. Tigers are killed to make rugs and coats out of their skins. 
In many Asian cultures medicines made from tiger's body organs are believed to cure diseases. 

Habitat Loss
Forests where tigers live are cut by humans for farming, building houses and roads. This leads to tigers becoming homeless and without any food. Since other animals also die when forests are cut, it leads to tigers becoming weak and their ultimate death. 

Project Tiger 
Project Tiger is a wildlife conservation project initiated in India in 1972 to protect the Bengal Tigers. It was launched on April 1, 1973 and has become one of the most successful wild life conservation ventures. The project aims at Tiger conservation in specially constituted Tiger reserves representative of various bio geographical regions through out India. It strives to maintain a viable conservation based on tiger population in their natural environment. 
Project Tiger was Indira Gandhi's pet project. The main achievements of this project are excellent recovery of the habitat and consequent increase in the tiger population in the reserve areas, from a mere 268 in 7 reserves in 1972 to above one thousand in 28 reserves in 2006. 
Tigers being at the apex of the food chain can be considered as the indicator of the integrity of the ecosystem. They can be found in a wide range of habitats, from the evergreen and monsoon forests of the Inda-Malayan realm to the mixed coniferous - deciduous woodlands of the Far east Russia and the mangrove swamps of the Sundarbans, shared by India and Bangladesh. 
Tigers are mostly nocturnal but in the northern part of its range, the Siberian subspecies may also be active during the day at winter-time. All wild tigers live in Asia, others live in the humid jungles of Sumatra. The body length is 140 - 280 cm and the tail length is 60 to 95 cm. The upper part of the animal ranges from reddish orange to ochre and the under parts all whitish. The body has a series of black stripes of black to dark grey colour. 


The following are the dictionary entries for some of the words that appear in 'The Mystery of Bermuda Triangle'. Study the words and their meanings before you read the mystery for better comprehension. 

•  Halloween/halau in/ : the night of 31st October when it was believed in the past that dead people appeared from their graves. This is now celebrated in the US, Canada and Britain by children who dress as ghosts and witches. 
vector/'vekta/: an insect or animal which carries a disease from one animal or plant to another; a course taken by an aircraft; a quantity, such as velocity, completely specified by a magnitude and direction. 
• crackle/' krak(a)l/: to make short sharp sounds . 
ascent/ a' sent/: the act of climbing or moving up . 
• roger/' rod3a /: in communication by radio to show that they have understood a message; an expression of agreement. 
• probe/praub/: to ask questions in order to find out some secret or hidden information; an exploratory action; expedition, or device, especially one designed to investigate and obtain information on a remote or unknown region. 

abduct/ ab' dAkt/ : to take somebody away illegally, by using force. 
time warp/ taimwarp /: a situation in which it is possible for people or things from the past or the future to move to the present. 
phenomenon/ fa' nomrnan/: a fact or an event in nature or society, especially one that is not fully understood. 
erratic/ I' rat.Ik/: not happening at regular times. 
engulf /In· g /\ If/,/ &n · g /\ If/: to surround or to cover somebody or something completely. 


Understanding the Connectors.

                        Connectors are joining words. They join any of the following:

1. One word with another tired but happy.
2. One phrase with the other ready to go and eager to start.
3. One clause with another I went home because I had finished my
work.
4. One sentence with another It was raining along heavily. So we took
along an umbrella.

Exchange information with another group and record it. Then in groups of four discuss the results of the following: 
• Do boys and girls spend the same amount of time at the computer? 
• Do their tastes and preferences change as they grow older? 
• Are the number of hours spent at the computer/studying at home/leisure/ internet different between boys and girls? 
• Do the number of hours per week spent at the computer/studying at home/ internet/ leisure activities change as students grow up? 


What does he plant who plants a tree?
He plants cool shade and tender rain,
And seed and bud of days to be,
And years that fade and flush again;
He plants the glory of the plain;
He plants the forest's heritage;
The harvest of a coming age;
The joy that unborn eyes shall see___
These things he plants who plants a tree.

Read the lines given above and answer the question that follow:

What is meant by the phrase ‘days to be’?


"They say it was a shocking sight
After the field was won;
For many thousand bodies here
Lay rotting in the sun;
But things like that, you know, must be 
After a famous victory.
"Great praise the Duke of Marlbro'won,
And our good Prince Eugene."
"Why,'twas a very wicked thing!"
Said little Wilhelmine.

"Nay...nay...my little girl,"quoth he,
"It was a famous victory.
"And everybody praised the Duke
Who this great fight did win."
"But what good came of it at last?"
Quoth little Peterkin.
"Why that I cannot tell,"said he,
"But 'twas a famous victory."

Read the lines given above and answer the question that follow.

Explain with reference to context.


The most important thing we've learned,
So far as children are concerned,
Is never, NEVER, NEVER let
Them near your television set-----
Or better still, just don't install
The Idiotic thing at all.
In almost every house we've been,
we've watched them gaping at the screen
They loll and slop and lounge about,
And stare until their eyes pop out.
(Last week in someone's place we saw
A dozen eyeballs on the floor.
They sit and stare and stare and sit
Until they're hypnotised by it,
Until they're absolutely drunk
With all that shocking ghastly junk.

Read the lines given above and answer the question given below. 

What should parents do for the entertainment of their children?


An old man with steel rimmed spectacles and very dusty clothes sat by the side of the road. There was a pontoon bridge across the river and carts, trucks, and men, women and children were crossing it. The mule-drawn carts staggered up the steep bank from the bridge with soldiers helping push against the spokes of the wheels. The trucks ground up and away heading out of it all and the peasants plodded along in the ankle deep dust. But the old man sat there without moving. He was too tired to go any farther.

Read the extract given below and answer the question that follow.

Why did the old man continue to sit without moving with the other villagers?


Of the seven hundred villages dotting the map of India, in which the majority of India’s five hundred million live, flourish and die, Kritam was probably the tiniest, indicated on the district survey map by a microscopic dot, the map being meant more for the revenue official out to collect tax than for the guidance of the motorist, who in any case could not hope to reach it since it sprawled far from the highway at the end of a rough track furrowed up by the iron-hooped wheels of bullock carts. But its size did not prevent its giving itself the grandiose name Kritam, which meant in Tamil coronet or crown on the brow of the subcontinent. The village consisted of fewer than thirty houses, only one of them built from brick and cement and painted a brilliant yellow and blue all over with

gorgeous carvings of gods and gargoyles on its balustrade, it was known as the Big House. The other houses, distributed in four streets, were generally of bamboo thatch, straw, mud and other unspecified material. Muni’s was the last house in the fourth street, beyond which stretched the fields. In his prosperous days Muni had owned a flock of sheep and goats and sallied forth every morning driving the flock to the highway a couple of miles away.

Read the extract given below and answer the question that follow.

How many houses were there in the village?


Of the seven hundred villages dotting the map of India, in which the majority of India’s five hundred million live, flourish and die, Kritam was probably the tiniest, indicated on the district survey map by a microscopic dot, the map being meant more for the revenue official out to collect tax than for the guidance of the motorist, who in any case could not hope to reach it since it sprawled far from the highway at the end of a rough track furrowed up by the iron-hooped wheels of bullock carts. But its size did not prevent its giving itself the grandiose name Kritam, which meant in Tamil coronet or crown on the brow of the subcontinent. The village consisted of fewer than thirty houses, only one of them built from brick and cement and painted a brilliant yellow and blue all over with

gorgeous carvings of gods and gargoyles on its balustrade, it was known as the Big House. The other houses, distributed in four streets, were generally of bamboo thatch, straw, mud and other unspecified material. Muni’s was the last house in the fourth street, beyond which stretched the fields. In his prosperous days Muni had owned a flock of sheep and goats and sallied forth every morning driving the flock to the highway a couple of miles away.

Read the extract given below and answer the question that follow.

Where was Muni’s house located?


The horse was nearly life-size, moulded out of clay, baked, burnt, and brightly coloured, and reared its head proudly, prancing its forelegs in the air and flourishing its tail in a loop; beside the horse stood a warrior with scythelike mustachios, bulging eyes, and aquiline nose. The old image-makers believed in indicating a man of strength by bulging out his eyes and sharpening his moustache tips, and also decorated the man’s chest with beads which looked today like blobs of mud through the ravages of sun and wind and rain (when it came), but Muni would insist that he had known the beads to sparkle like the nine gems at one time in his life.

Read the extract given below and answer the question that follow.

Describe the horse.


Easton, with a little laugh, as if amused, was about to speak again when the other forestalled him. The glum-faced man had been watching the girl’s countenance with veiled glances from his keen, shrewd eyes.

“You’ll excuse me for speaking, miss, but, I see you’re acquainted with the marshall here. If you’ll ask him to speak a word for me when we get to the pen he’ll do it, and it’ll make things easier for me there. He’s taking me to Leavenworth prison. It’s seven years for counterfeiting.”

“Oh!” said the girl, with a deep breath and returning color. “So that is what you are doing out here? A marshal!”

“My dear Miss Fairchild,” said Easton, calmly, “I had to do something. Money has a way of taking wings unto itself, and you know it takes money to keep step with our crowd in Washington. I saw this opening in the West, and—well, a marshalship isn’t quite as high a position as that of ambassador, but—”

Read the extract given below and answer the question that follow.

What was the crime of the prisoner? And what is the punishment.


 

The boy looked up. He took his hands from his face and looked up at his teacher. The light from Mr. Oliver’s torch fell on the boy’s face, if you could call it a face. He had no eyes, ears, nose or mouth. It was just a round smooth head with a school cap on top of it.

And that’s where the story should end, as indeed it has for several people who have had similar experiences and dropped dead of inexplicable heart attacks. But for Mr. Oliver, it did not end there. The torch fell from his trembling hand. He turned and scrambled down the path, running blindly through the trees and calling for help. He was still running towards the school buildings when he saw a lantern swinging in the middle of the path. Mr. Oliver had never before been so pleased to see the night watchman. He stumbled up to the watchman, gasping for breath and speaking incoherently.

What is it, Sahib? Asked the watchman, has there been an accident? Why are you running?

I saw something, something horrible, a boy weeping in the forest and he had no face.
No face, Sahib?
No eyes, no nose, mouth, nothing.
Do you mean it was like this, Sahib? asked the watchman, and raised the lamp to his own face. The watchman had no eyes, no ears, no features at all, not even an eyebrow. The wind blew the lamp out and Mr. Oliver had his heart attack.

Read the extract given below and answer the question that follow.

What did the watchman ask Mr Oliver? ‘


When there was a strong wind, the pine trees made sad, eerie sounds that kept most people to the main road. But Mr. Oliver was not a nervous or imaginative man. He carried a torch – and on the night I write of, its pale gleam, the batteries were running down – moved fitfully over the narrow forest path. When its flickering light fell on the figure of a boy, who was sitting alone on a rock, Mr. Oliver stopped.

Boys were not supposed to be out of school after seven P.M. and it was now well past nine. What are you doing out here, boy, asked Mr. Oliver sharply, moving closer so that he could recognize the miscreant.

Read the extract given below and answer the question that follow.

Why did the people keep to the main road instead of taking the shortcut?


Joe did not see the Guardians of the Poor on that day, on the next, nor on the day following. In fact, he never saw them at all on Maggie’s account, for in less than a week Mrs. Joe Thompson would as soon leave thought of taking up her own abode in the almshouse as sending Maggie there.

What light and blessing did that sick and helpless child bring to the home of Joe Thompson, the poor wheelwright! It had been dark, and cold, and miserable there for a long time just because his wife had nothing to love and care for out of herself, and so became soar, irritable, ill-tempered, and self-afflicting in the desolation of her woman’s nature. Now the sweetness of that sick child, looking ever to her in love, patience, and gratitude, was as honey to her soul, and she carried her in her heart as well as in her arms, a precious burden. As for Joe Thompson, there was not a man in all the neighbourhood who drank daily of a more precious wine of life than he. An angel had come into his house, disguised as a sick, helpless, and miserable child, and filled all its dreary chambers with the sunshine of love.

Read the extract given below and answer the question that follow.

Who was the angel? Why does the author say she was disguised?


Most terribly cold it was; it snowed, and was nearly quite dark, and evening— the last evening of the year. In this cold and darkness there went along the street a poor little girl, bareheaded, and with naked feet. When she left home she had slippers on, it is true; but what was the good of that? They were very large slippers, which her mother had hitherto worn; so large were they; and the poor little thing lost them as she scuffled away across the street, because of two carriages that rolled by dreadfully fast.

One slipper was nowhere to be found; the other had been laid hold of by an urchin, and off he ran with it; he thought it would do capitally for a cradle when he some day or other should have children himself. So the little maiden walked on with her tiny naked feet, that were quite red and blue from cold. She carried a quantity of matches in an old apron, and she held a bundle of them in her hand. Nobody had bought anything of her the whole livelong day; no one had given her a single farthing. She crept along trembling with cold and hunger—a very picture of sorrow, the poor little thing!

Read the extract given below and answer the question that follow.

Which day of the year was it in the story?


She again rubbed a match on the wall, and the light shone round her; in the brightness stood her old grandmother, clear and shining, yet mild and loving in her appearance. “Grandmother,” cried the little one, “O take me with you; I know you will go away when the match burns out; you will vanish like the warm stove, the roast goose, and the large, glorious Christmas-tree.” And she made haste to light the whole bundle of matches, for she wished to keep her grandmother there. And the matches glowed with a light that was brighter than the noon-day, and her grandmother had never appeared so large or so beautiful. She took the little girl in her arms, and they both flew upwards in brightness and joy far above the earth, where there was neither cold nor hunger nor pain, for they were with God.

In the dawn of morning there lay the poor little one, with pale cheeks and smiling mouth, leaning against the wall; she had been frozen to death on the last evening of the year; and the New-year’s sun rose and shone upon a little corpse! The child still sat, in the stiffness of death, holding the matches in her hand, one bundle of which was burnt. “She tried to warm herself,” said some. No one imagined what beautiful things she had seen, nor into what glory she had entered with her grandmother, on New-year’s day.

Read the extract given below and answer the question that follow.

Why did the girl make haste to light the whole bundle of matches?


The women came out on the shore, and made for the stepping—?stones. They had plenty to laugh and bicker about, as they approached the river in a noisy crowd. They girded up their skirts, so as to jump from stone to stone, and they clanked their sickles and forks together over their shoulders to have ease of movement. They shouted their quarrels above the gush of the river. Noise frightens crocodiles. The big mugger did not move, and all the women crossed in safety to the other bank. Here they had to climb a steep hillside to get at the grass, but all fell to with a will, and sliced away at it wherever there was foothold to be had. Down below them ran the broad river, pouring powerfully out from its deep narrow pools among the cold cliffs and shadows, spreading into warm shallows, lit by kingfishers. Great turtles lived there, and mahseer weighing more than a hundred pounds. Crocodiles too. Sometimes you could see them lying out on those slabs of clay over there, but there were none to be seen at the moment.

Read the extract given below and answer the question that follow.

What were they doing on the hill?


Sibia sprang.
From boulder to boulder she came leaping like a rock goat. Sometimes it had seemed difficult to cross these stones, especially the big gap in the middle where the river coursed through like a bulge of glass. But now she came on wings, choosing her footing in midair without even thinking about it, and in one moment she was beside the shrieking woman. In the boiling bloody water, the face of the crocodile, fastened round her leg, was tugging to and fro, and smiling. His eyes rolled on to Sibia. One slap of the tail could kill her. He struck. Up shot the water, twenty feet, and fell like a silver chain. Again! The rock jumped under the blow. But in the daily heroism of the jungle, as common as a thorn tree, Sibia did not hesitate. She aimed at the reptile’s eyes. With all the force of her little body, she drove the hayfork at the eyes, and one prong went in—right in— while its pair scratched past on the horny cheek. The crocodile reared up in convulsion, till half his lizard body was out of the river, the tail and nose nearly meeting over his stony back. Then he crashed back, exploding the water, and in an uproar of bloody foam he disappeared. He would die. Not yet, but presently, though his death would not be known for days; not till his stomach, blown with gas, floated him. Then perhaps he would be found upside down among the logs at the timber boom, with pus in his eye. Sibia got arms round the fainting woman, and somehow dragged her from the water.

Read the extract given below and answer the question that follow.

Why does Sibia think of the two brass vessels when the Gujar woman is attacked?


As it turned out, Luz broke his own past record. In doing so, he pushed me on to a peak performance. I remember that at the instant I landed from my final jump—the one which set the Olympic record of 26 feet 5-5/16 inches—he was at my side, congratulating me. Despite the fact that Hitler glared at us from the stands not a hundred yards away, Luz shook my hand hard—and it wasn’t a fake “smile with a broken heart” sort of grip, either.

You can melt down all the gold medals and cups I have, and they couldn’t be a plating on the 24-carat friendship I felt for Luz Long at that moment. I realized then, too, that Luz was the epitome of what Pierre de Coubertin, founder of the modern Olympic Games, must have had in mind when he said, “The important thing in the Olympic Games is not winning but taking part. The essential thing in life is not conquering but fighting well.”

Read the extract given below and answer the question that follow.

You can melt down all the gold medals and cups I have, and they wouldn’t be a plating on the 24-carat friendship I felt for Luz Long at that moment.


Which is considered as the greatest Olympic prize? Why?


Given below are four words and phrases. Find the words which have a similar meaning in the passage:
(1) Coming near 
( 2 ) Disappeared suddenly
(3) Awakening from sleep
(4) Moved slowly and gradually


I could hear the squeaking that heralded the evening arrival of the bats. I listened to the noises of the approaching night. Every day my hearing grew sharper. I was learning to filter out whatever I did not need to listen to, and giving no sign that I could hear everything that went on in the house.

I could not sleep. The air was heavy and still, the moon hidden behind thick banks of cloud. Lord Otori was sound asleep. I did not want to leave the house I'd come to love so much, but I seemed to be bringing nothing but trouble to it. Perhaps it would be better for everyone if I just vanished in the night.    [5]

 
Now I heard the hiss of hot water as the bath was prepared, the clatter of dishes from the kitchen, the sliding sigh of the cook's knife, a dog barking two streets away, and the sounds of feet on the wooden bridges on the canals. I knew the sounds of the house, day and night, in the sunshine and under the rain. This evening I realized I was always listening for something more. I was waiting too. For what?        [10]


I began to wonder if I could get out of the house without setting the dogs barking and arousing the guards. I started consciously listening to the dogs. Usually, I heard them bark on and off throughout the night, but I'd learned to distinguish their barks and to ignore them. I set my ears for them but heard nothing. Then I started listening for the guards: the sound of a foot on stone or a whispered conversation. Nothing. Sounds that should have been there been missing from the night's familiar web.        [20]


Now I was wide-awake, straining my ears to hear. There came the slightest of sounds, hardly more than a tremor, between the window and the ground.    


For a moment I thought it was the earth-shaking, as it so often did. Another tiny tremble followed, then another. Someone was climbing up the side of the house        [25]


My first instinct was to yell out, but cunning took over. I rose from the mattress and crept silently to Lord Otori's side. I knelt beside him and whispered in his ear, "Lord Otori, someone is, outside."      [30]


He woke instantly and then reached for the sword and knife that lay beside him. I gestured to the window. The faint tremor came again.


Lord Otori passed the knife to me and stepped to the wall. I moved to the other side of the window. We waited for the assassin to climb in.


Step by step he came up the wall, stealthy and unhurried as if he had all the time in the world. We waited for him with the same patience.    [35]

He paused on the sill to take out the knife he planned to use on us and then stepped inside. Lord Otori took him in a stranglehold. The intruder wriggled backwards. I leaped at him, and the three of us fell into the garden like a flurry of fighting cats.  [40]


The man fell first, across the stream, striking his head on a boulder. Lord Otori landed on his feet. My fall was broken by one of the shrubs. The intruder groaned, tried to rise, but slipped back into the water.


"Get a light," Lord Otori said.


I ran to the house, took a light that still burned in one of the candle stands and carried it back to the garden.    [45]


The assassin had died without regaining consciousness. It turned out he had a poison pellet in his mouth and had crushed it as he tell. He was dressed in black, with no marking on his clothes. I held the light over him. There was nothing to tell us who he was.    [50]

 

(i) Given below are four words and phrases. Find the words which have a similar meaning in the passage:
(1) Coming near 
( 2 ) Disappeared suddenly
(3) Awakening from sleep
(4) Moved slowly and gradually 

(ii) For each of the words given below, write a sentence of at least ten words using the same word unchanged in form, but with a different  meaning from that which it carries in the passage:
(1) Bats ( line 1 )
( 2 ) Sign ( line 4 )
( 3 ) Banks (  line 6 )
( 4 )  Back ( line 43 )


 What is meant by 'dead habit'? What is 'dead habits' compared to and why?


Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow : 

One Sunday morning Squealer announced that the hens, who just come in to lay again, must surrender their eggs. 

(i) Why were the hens required to surrender their eggs? 

(ii) How did the hens react to receiving this information? 

(iii) The three young black Minorca pullets led the other hens in 'something resembling a rebellion'. How exactly did they do this? 

(iv) What steps did Napoleon take to put down this 'rebellion'? 

(v) How long did the rebellion last? Describe the consequences of the rebellion. What do you learn of Napoleon's character from the way in which he dealt with the rebellion? 


Abbu Khan pushed Chandni into a small hut. This shows that he


Discuss the following topic in groups.

“Death in an open field is better than life in a small hut,” Chandni said to herself. Was it the right decision? Give reasons for your answer.


The following sentence has two blanks. Fill in the blanks with appropriate forms of the word given in bracket.

It’s a fairly simple question to__________,butwill you accept my________ as final? (answer)


What was the king’s reaction when he came to know that he had lost the challenge?


How was the wicked farmer punished for his greed?


Why did the shepherd always carry his old blanket with him?


Ray was not a pawnbroker. Why then did he lend money to people in exchange for their old watches and clocks?


When did “the unfriendly face” of the visitor turn truly friendly?


Who were the two last-minute shoppers to Ray’s shop?


How did Ray tackle the evil-minded shoppers?


Why did Akbar ask Tansen to join his court?


What did the other courtiers feel about Tansen?


Define a dream in your own words.


Why does the poet say, “I hope it doesn’t matter”?


Say what you feel about homework. (The words and phrases in the boxes may help you.) Do you think it is useful, even though you may not like it? Form pairs, and speak to each other.

For example:

You may say, “I am not fond of homework.”

Your partner may reply, “But my sister helps me with my lessons at home, and that gives a boost to my marks.”

(not) be fond of
(not) take to
(not) develop a liking for
(not) appeal to
(not) be keen on
(not) have a taste for

  • support
  • assist
  • with the aid of
  • help
  • be a boon
  • give a boost to

The little elf was a nag. How did it tell Patrick’s health?


Do you agree with what the poet says? Talk to your partner and complete these sentences.

(i) A house is made of ____________.

(ii) It has ____________.

(iii) A home is made by ____________.

(iv) It has ____________.


Multiple Choice Question:

What does the phrase in earnest mean here?


When did the banyan tree become a noisy place?


Answer the following question.

Peter’s favourite day of the week is Sunday because ___________________________.


Answer the following question.

Nasir wants to learn ______________________________________________


Replace the italicised portion of the sentence below with a suitable phrase from the box. Make necessary changes, wherever required.
It will free me from worry to know that I had done nothing wrong.


Are the rebels rain lovers?


Why does the rebel demand for the rain when everybody is praising the sun?


What did the dog do to lead the farmer to the hidden gold?


Study the following phrases and their meanings. Use them appropriately to complete the sentences that follow.

……………. when you are crossing the main road.


Read the lines given below and answer the following question:

Iris: Of her society
Be not afraid. I met her deity
Cutting the clouds towards Paphos, and her son
Dove-drawn with her.

Whom does Iris refer to as ‘her’?


Read the lines given below and answer the following question:

Iris: Of her society
Be not afraid. I met her deity
Cutting the clouds towards Paphos, and her son
Dove-drawn with her.

Why was the person addressed afraid of “her”?


Read the lines given below and answer the following question:

“But my darling, if you love me,” thought Miss Meadows, “I don’t
Mind how much it is. Love me as little as you like.”

What had the “darling” informed Miss Meadows?


Read the lines given below and answer the following question:

“But my darling, if you love me,” thought Miss Meadows, “I don’t
Mind how much it is. Love me as little as you like.”

What was the effect of Basil’s letter on Miss Meadows?


Read the lines given below and answer the following question:

Sophocles long ago
Heard it on the Agean…

What did he hear on the Agean?


Answer the following question.

Who advised Golu to go to the Limpopo River?


Read the passage given below and answer the questions (i), (ii) and (iii) that follow:

(1)

Something happens to cats after we have enjoyed a delicious meal. Call it a feline sugar hit or a rush of good feelings. Abandoning our usually sedentary nature, we transform into crazy beasts who thunder down corridors, spring from one piece of furniture to another, or pounce from behind half-closed doors to attack the shoelaces of unsuspecting passersby. It is as though we are temporarily possessed.

 

 

5

(2)

That, at least, is my excuse, dear reader - and the only explanation I can offer for my entirely unplanned global TV debut.

 

(3)

To be fair, I had no way of knowing that my master was receiving visitors that particular afternoon. Nor that he was being interviewed live, let alone by one of America’s most famous journalists.

10

(4)

All I knew was that, a few minutes after gorging myself on a favourite treat of creamy pudding, I felt that sudden, primal explosion of energy. I made my way back to the suite of rooms that I shared with my master and felt an overpowering compulsion to do something completely mad. I wanted to run like a furious jungle cat, at that particular moment.

 

 

 

15

(5)

Bursting through the door of the room in which my master received visitors, I tore up the carpet as I raced towards the sofa opposite where he was sitting. I ripped its fabric as I scrambled up its side like a savage creature clawing its way up a perilous cliff. Then with a final, frenzied burst, I launched myself off one arm of the sofa, leaping towards the other.

 

 

20

(6)

It was only at this point that I realised the sofa was occupied by the journalist. She was halfway through a sentence, and my abrupt appearance caught my master's guest completely by surprise.

 

(7)

You know, when something truly unexpected happens, time can seem to slow down. Well, that’s how it was. As I flew past the woman's face, her expression turned from one of calm engagement to that of total surprise.

25

(8)

I As she pushed back in her seat to avoid me, the shock on her face could not have been more evident.

 

(9)

But, dear reader, she was not more shaken than me. I had not been expecting anyone on the sofa, let alone a TV celebrity, nor one who was mid-interview. As I headed towards the opposite end of the sofa, for the first time I observed the lighting, the cameras and the crew watching the action from the shadows. By the time I landed on the other arm of the sofa, all the energy that had propelled me was gone.

30

 

 

35

(10)

I was, no longer, a furious jungle cat.

 

(11)

The journalist looked at me. I looked at her. Both of us were taking in what had just happened. I was also conscious of the cameras still rolling as well as many pairs of eyes watching me at that moment. My moment of global glory.

 

 

Adapted from: The Dalai Lama's Cat Omnibus
By David Michie

 

(i)

  1. Given below are three words and phrases. Find the words which have a similar meaning in the passage: [3]
    1. inactive
    2. eating in a greedy manner
    3. dangerous
  2. For each of the words given below, write a sentence of at least ten words using the same word unchanged in form, but with a different meaning from that which it carries in the passage: [3]
    1. thunder (line 3)
    2. spring (line 3)
    3. past (line 26)

(ii) Answer the following questions in your own words as briefly as possible:

  1. What is the usual nature of the narrator's kind? How is it differently presented in the passage? [2]
  2. What did the 'favourite treat of creamy pudding' do to the narrator? [2]
  3. Describe the actions of the narrator after bursting into the visitors' room. [2]
  4. How did the journalist react when the narrator 'flew past' her face? [2]

(iii) Summarise how the narrator became a global celebrity (paragraphs 4 to 11). You are required to write the summary in the form of a connected passage in about 100 words. Failure to keep within the word limit will be penalised. [6]


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