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Important Questions for ICSE Class 10 - CISCE - English 2 (Literature in English)

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English 2 (Literature in English)
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Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:

Portia:  To these injunctions every one doth s'vear
That comes to hazard for my worthless self. 

Arragon: And so have I address'd me. Fortune now
To my heart's hope! - Gold, silver and base lead. 

(i) Who had tried his luck in trying to choose the correct casket before the prince of Arragon? Which casket had that suitor chosen ? What did he find inside the casket? 

(ii)  What are the three things Arragon was obliged by the oath to obey?

(iii) What was the inscription on the golden casket? How do the actions of the martlet illustrate this inscription?

(iv) Which casket does Arragon finally choose? Whose portrait does he find inside? Which casket actually contains Portia's portrait? 
(v) Who enters soon after? What does he say about the young Venetian who has just arrived? What gifts has the Venetian brought with him?

Appears in 2 question papers
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

Why, look you, how you storm!
I would be friends with you and have your love,
Forget the shames that you have stain' d me with,
Supply your present wants, and take no doit
Of usance for my money, and you'll not hear me:
This is the kind I offer. 

(i) Where does this scene take place? Who is the speaker? To whom is he talking?

(ii) What are the 'slaves' which the speaker says hau stained him?

(iii) What are the 'present wants'? Who is its need of I~ 'present wants'? Why?

(iv) Explain "Tlris is kind I offer". What does the speaker propose to do immediately after this?

(v) What do you think of Antonio and of Shylock 1vi' regard to the signing of the bond? 

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.02] Speaking
Concept: Speaking

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

Duke: What, is Antonio here?
Antonio: Ready, so please your grace.
Duke: I am sorry for thee: thou art come to answer
A stony adversary, an inhuman wretch
Incapable of pity, void and empty
From any dram of mercy. 

(i) What are the terms of the bond that Antonio has signed? 
(ii) Why does the Duke call Shylock ‘inhuman’? What does the Duke expect Shylock to do? 
(iii) What reason does Shylock give for choosing rotten flesh over money? What are the things hated by some people? 
(iv) State three examples Antonio gives to illustrate Shylock’s stubborn attitude. 
(v) How is Shylock’s property distributed at the end by Antonio? Do you think Shylock deserves the punishment given to him? Give a reason to justify your answer. 

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

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

Portia: .......But this reasoning is not in fashion to choose me a husband. O me, the word “choose”! I may neither choose who I would, nor refuse whom I dislike; so is the will of a living daughter curbed by the will of a dead father. Is it not hard, Nerissa, that I cannot choose one, nor refuse none?

(i) What test had Portia’s father devised for her suitors? What oath did the suitors have to take before making their choice? 

(ii) Who is Nerissa? What does she say to cheer up Portia? 

(iii) Why does Portia disapprove of the County Palatine? Who would she rather marry? 


(iv) How, according to Portia, can the Duke of Saxony’s nephew be made to choose the wrong casket? What do these suitors ultimately decide? Why? 

(v) Whom does Portia ultimately marry? Who were the two other suitors who took the test? Why, in your opinion, is the person whom she marries worthy of her? 

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

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

Lady Adela:  Oh! Charlie, he did look so exactly as if he’d sold me a carpet when I was paying him.
Winsor:   [changing into slippers] His father did sell carpets, wholesale, in the City.
Lady Adela:  Really? And you say I haven’t intuition! [With a finger on her lips] Morison’s in there.
Winsor:  [Motioning towards the door, which she shuts] Ronny Dancy took a tenner off him, anyway, before dinner.

(i) How did Dancy take a ‘tenner’ from De Levis?
How does De Levis later connect this trick with the theft? 

(ii) Why, according to Lady Adela, did Dancy leave the army? Why does she call him reckless? 

(iii) Where had De Levis kept the money which was stolen? Where had he gone after keeping the money? How much did he lose? 

(iv) Why is Winsor outraged when De Levis says he had locked his door? What was the height of the room from the ground? How do they know that the thief did not use a ladder to climb up to De Levis’ room? 

(v) How does General Canynge react when De Levis first accuses Dancy of committing the theft? What is your opinion of De Levis?
Give one reason to justify your answer. 

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

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

Mabel: Oh! Why didn’t I face it? But I couldn’t—I had to believe.
Dancy: And now you can’t. It’s the end, Mabel.
Mabel: [Looking up at him] No.
[Dancy goes suddenly on his knees and seizes her hand.]
Dancy: Forgive me!
Mabel: [Putting her hand on his head] Yes; oh, yes! I think I’ve known for a long time, really. Only — why? What made you?

(i) How does Dancy respond to Mabel’s question? 

(ii) What makes Dancy say ‘that’s not in human nature’ a little later? 

(iii) Why does Inspector Dede arrive at Dancy’s house? How does Mabel try to stall him? 

(iv) To whom was Dancy’s suicide note addressed? What had he written in it? 

(v) What does Margaret mean when she says that keeping faith is ‘not enough’ and ‘we’ve all done that’?
What, in your opinion, should his friends have done? 

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

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

The buoy of the Inchcape Bell was seen
A darker speck on the ocean green;
Sir Ralph the Rover walked his deck,
And fixed eye on the darker speck.
                   (The Inchcape Rock: Robert Southey)

(i) Contrast the weather when Sir Ralph the Rover passed the Inchcape Rock the first time with the weather when he returned to the place.

(ii) Why had the Abbot of Aberbrothok hung a bell on the Inchcape Rock? 

(iii) Why did Sir Ralph cut the bell from the Inchcape Rock? Describe the manner in which it sank underwater. 

(iv) What did Sir Ralph say to reassure his men when it became very dark? What opinion did one of the sailors have about their location? What did they all wish for? 


(v) How did the ship sink? What sound did Sir Ralph imagine he could hear in his dying moments? What is the message of the poem? 

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

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


What do you call, O ye pedlars?
Chessmen and ivory dice.
What do you make, O ye goldsmiths?
Wristlet and anklet and ring, ….
                     (In the Bazaars of Hyderabad: Sarojini Naidu)

(i) What all were being sold by the merchants? 

(ii) What is being ground by the maidens? Which items are the vendors weighing? 

(iii) Describe the bells that the goldsmiths are crafting for blue pigeons? What do the goldsmiths make for the dancers and the king? 

(iv) Which instruments are the musicians playing? What are the magicians doing? 

(v) Mention the happy as well the sad occasions for which the flower girls are weaving flowers. Write one reason why the poem has appealed to you.

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

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

             Baldeo, the watchman, was awake. He stretched himself, slowly unwinding the heavy shawl that covered him like a shroud. It was close on midnight and the chill air made him shiver. The station, a small shack backed by heavy jungle, was a station in name only; for trains only stopped there, if at all, for a few seconds before entering the deep cutting that led to the tunnel. Most trains only slowed down before taking the sharp curve before the cutting.

(i) What were Baldeo’s duties as a watchman? What question did his son ask him before he left for his nightly errand? 

(ii) Describe the axe that Baldeo carried with him. Who had made the axe? 

(iii) Which sound made Baldeo realize that the tiger was close by?
Why was he worried that the tiger may be going in the opposite direction? Why didn’t the tiger fear the man? 

(iv) Give an account of the encounter between Baldeo and the tiger. 

(v) How did the tiger die? Point out a similarity in the characters of Baldeo and his son Tembu. Give an example for each to justify your answer. 

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

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

.......Once again Clover and Benjamin warned him to take care of his health, but Boxer paid, no attention. His twelfth birthday was approaching. He did not care what happened so long as a good store of stone was accumulated before he went on a pension.
       Late one evening, in the summer, a sudden rumor ran round the farm that something had happened to Boxer. He had gone out alone to drag a load of stone down to the windmill. And sure enough, the rumor was true….

(i) In what condition did the animals find Boxer?

(ii) Why did the animals feel uneasy when Squealer told them that Boxer would be sent to a hospital at Willingdon for treatment?
How did Squealer reassure them? 

(iii) How much longer did Boxer expect to live?
How did he plan to spend his remaining days? 

(iv) What was written on the van that took Boxer away? What did Boxer do when he heard the screams of the animals? 

(v) What was the new name given to Animal Farm by Napoleon?
What strange transformation did the animals notice on the faces of the pigs?
What is the significance of this transformation? 

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

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

Each Friday morning the whole school spent the pre-recess period in writing their Weekly Review. This was one of the Old Man’s pet schemes; and one about which he would brook no interference. Each child would review the events of his school week in his own words, in his own way; he was free to comment, to criticize, to agree or disagree, with any person, subject or method, as long as it was in some way associated with the school …..

(i) Why did Mr. Florian feel that the weekly review was of advantage to both pupil and teacher? 

(ii) Why did Braithwaite feel both relief and disappointment at the first weekly review his students had written since he joined the school? 

(iii) How was he given the silent treatment by his students? 

(iv) What does Braithwaite term the second and more annoying phase of his relationship with his students? What did some students do to disrupt his class? 

(v) Mention two qualities in Braithwaite’s character which help him to become a model teacher. Give suitable examples to illustrate your choice.

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

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

De Levis: Social Blackmail? H'm!

Canynge: Not at all - simple warning. If you consider it necessary in your interests to start this scandal-no matter how we shall consider it necessary in ours to dissociate ourselves completely from one who so recklessly disregards the unwritten code. 

(i) Where are the speakers at present? What is referred to as Social Black-mail?

(ii) Who is Canynge? What scandal is being referred to? Why will it be a scandal? 

(iii)  Which race does De Levis mention later? What is his opinion about society? 

(iv) What does Canynge do soon after and what does he find? What was his reaction? What does the discovery prove?

(v) What is De Levis going through at this point of time? What light does it throw upon his character? What change do we see in his character later in the play? Give a reason to justify your answer. 

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

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

All that year the animals worked like slaves. But they were happy in their work, they grudged no effort or sacrifice, well aware that everything that they did was for the benefit of themselves and those of their kind who would come after ·them and not for a pack of idle thieving human beings. Throughout the spring and summer, they worked a sixty-hour week, and in August ...............

(i)  What did Napoleon announce in August? 

(ii) How much time had elapsed since the constitution of the Animal Farm? As summer wore on, what unforeseen shortages began to be felt? 

(iii) What new policy did Napoleon make? The new • policy brought a vague uneasiness among the animals. What did they recall? 

(iv) Who had agreed to act as an intermediary between the Animal Farm and the outside world ' Describe him?

(v) What roused the pride of the animals and made them reconcile to the new arrangement? In the meanwhile, what sudden decision was taken by the pigs? What do we learn about Napoleon at this juncture? 

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

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

De Levis:  Confront me with Dancy and give me fair play.

Winsor:  [Aside to Canynge] Is it fair to Dancy not to let him know?

Canynge:  Our duty is to the Club now, Winsor. We must have tills cleared up. [Colford comes in, followed by Barring and Dancy].

St. Erth:  Captain Dancy, a serious accusation has been made against you by this gentleman in the presence of several members of the Club.

Dancy: What is it?

St. Erth: That you robbed him of that money at Winsor's.

Danny: [Hard and tense] Indeed! On what grounds is he good enough to say that? 

(i) How does De Levis respond to Dancy's last question in the extract? 

(ii) How did Dancy wish to settle the matter? What was St. Erth's suggestion? 

(iii) Why did Dancy's friends wish him to take legal action against De Levis? What reasons did Dancy give for not wanting to do so? 

(iv) When Mabel Dancy later requests De Levis to withdraw the charge, how does he respond? What declaration does Dancy wish De Levis to sign? 

(v) What information does Gilman give to Twisden? Why did Twisden decide to withdraw from the case? 

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

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

'Tell me not in mournful numbers,
Life is but an empty dream!
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
And things are not what they seem.'
(A Psalm of Life-H. W. Longfellow) 

(i) Explain-'Tell me not in mournful numbers, Life is but an empty dream!' What should not be considered the goal of life? 

(ii) What is the beating of the heart compared to? How is the heart described? IV/wt does the beating of the heart remind us of?

(iii) What does the poet mean when lie compares the world to a battlefield? What should our role be in this battle? 

(iv) How should we view the past and the future? what advice does the past give in this context?

(v) What do we learn from the lives of great men? What is the final message of the poem ? Give one reason why the poem appeals to you. 

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

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

Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high 
Where knowledge is free 
Where the world has not been broken up into fragments 
By narrow domestic walls (Where the Mind is Without Fear: Rabindranath Tagore) 

(i) To whom is the poet praying? Whose mind is the poet referring to at the beginning of the poem? Why? 

(ii) In which situation is the lead held high? What does he mean by 'knowledge is free'? What are 'narrow domestic walls'?

(iii) What does the poet mean by 'tireless striving'? What does 'clear stream' refer to? Explain.

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

(v)  What does ti» poet wish for al the end ~f the poem? What does tl1e poem tell the readers about the poet? Give a reason to justify yow· answer. 

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

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

"He was not accustomed to facing the entire class and speaking out aloud. He knew that he did not have a flair for making speeches. However, he had worked hard on his assignment and had written it from the depth of his heart." (India's Heroes-Anonymous! 

(i) Who was 'he'? What evidence is there that he was not used to facing the entire class? 

(ii) What was the assignment? How was our assignment different from the others?

(iii) Who was the first person to feature in 'his' assignment? What did 'he' say about him? 

(iv) Who was the General Manager of the Taj Hotel ' What role did he play?

(v) What, according to this speaker, is the only true religion in the world? What human qualities have I been highlighted through 'his' speech? 

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

Describe the first meeting and the last meeting l/between the Kabuliwnla and Mini. What realization dawns upon the Kabuliwala after the last meeting with Mini. 

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

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

"What's your name ?" he asked. 
"Bmillnvaite," I replied, "Ricardo Bmithwaite. 
'"I'm Pinkus and this is Mama Pinkus."  
 The introduction was effected with a filial devoti~ which was good to see. 
"How d'you do, Mama Pinkus." 
"I think I know someplace for you." He went the little noticeboard and removed a small car, on which was written a short advertisement of, room to let near-by. 

(i) Why was Braithwaite looking for a new placet? stay? Why was he impressed by the place that was on rent? 

(ii) What reception did Ile get wizen he reached the address that had been advertised? Whom did tit house belong to? 

(iii) Why did Mrs. Pegg come lo see Braithwaite? Wh• reply did Braithwaite give to her? 

(iv) What changes occurred in Pamela's persona/ii after the August holiday? 

(v) What comment did Potter make wizen Braithwait? hurt himself? What did he mean by that comment How did Pamela react to Potter's remark? 

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading

Give an account of the trip to The Victoria am Albert Museum that was planned by Braithwaif, for his class.

Appears in 1 question paper
Chapter: [0.03] Reading
Concept: Reading
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