The Snake and the Mirror Summary & Notes - CBSE Class 9 English Beehive

Summary of The Snake and the Mirror

Chapter 5 of the Class 9 English textbook – Beehive, consists of a prose – The Snake and the Mirror which is a story narrated by a homoeopathic doctor who encounters a snake while resting in his room. So does the snake bite him? Read the prose summary in CBSE English Notes Class 9 format to discover what happens next! CBSE Class 9 students can access the prose summary of the CBSE Class 9 English Prose Notes – The Snake and the Mirror that is written using lucid language, which they can refer to while preparing for their exams.

CBSE Class 9 English The Snake and the Mirror Summary

The Snake and the Mirror is a story written by Vaikom Muhammad Basheer. The narrator of the story is a homoeopathic doctor who talks about his dangerous encounter with a snake while he was resting in his room. Being a doctor himself, he narrates this tale to some people about his feelings of having a face-to-face confrontation with a huge snake. He begins the story with how he lived in a small rented room as a bachelor.

One hot summer evening, he was returning to his room after having a meal at a restaurant. Suddenly he heard a noise from the roof of his room that sounded familiar, but he ignored it. His rented room was in a terrible state where there was regular traffic of rats to and from the beam of his room. The tiled roof of his room was supported by gables which in turn were held up by the beam. As there was no electricity, he quickly took out a box of matches and lighted the kerosene lantern kept on his table.

Since the homeopath’s income was comparatively low, he could not afford to stay in a plush house with clean surroundings. He had around sixty rupees in his suitcase, along with a few shirts and dhotis and one solitary black coat which he would often wear. Soon, he took off his coat, shirt and vest and hung them up on a hanger. He opened the windows of his room and made his bed and pulled it closer towards the wall. He tried to sleep, but couldn’t due to the humid weather.

He rose from his bed and went to get some fresh air in the veranda, yet the weather was dry outside. He returned to his room, sat down on a chair and opened a box beneath the table and took out a medical book named ‘Materia Medica’ to read. While he opened to read it, there was a large mirror beside the lamp and a small comb kept near the mirror. Again, he heard the same noise coming from above the roof, yet he ignored.

Who doesn’t like admiring oneself when they see themselves in the mirror? The doctor was no exception. So, as he began gazing at the mirror, he couldn’t help admiring himself and wanted to look more presentable. As he picked up the comb and adjusted the parting of his hair in a neat section, he started thinking that he should work on his looks and always wear a smile on his face. Gradually, his chain of thoughts shifted from self-admiration to marrying a bulky woman doctor who would earn plenty of money and had a good medical practice. He wanted to marry a fat woman so that whenever he commits a blunder, she is unable to run after him and catch him.

The doctor was so lost in his thoughts that he didn’t pay heed to the pin-drop silence in his room and the scurrying of the rats was suddenly interrupted. Furthermore, there was a sudden thud like a rubber tube on the ground. He didn’t react to the sound at all. But just as he turned around, he saw a snake was wriggling on the back of his chair that landed on his shoulder. In no time, the snake coiled on the doctor’s left arm above the elbow. The snake was roughly a few inches away from his face. Consequently, the doctor was completely numb and remained still like a statue. At that moment, the doctor could feel that God might have punished him for his arrogance. He realised that he was a simple human being and he should not have bragged about his looks.

While the doctor was lost in this realization, the snake slowly moved away from him and went closer towards the mirror. As the snake observed itself in its reflection, it was filled with admiration of its own beauty. Seeing this, the doctor silently escaped from his room and ran for his life until he reached a friend’s house. The next morning he returned to his room to find that all his belongings were robbed except the dirty vest hanging on his room’s hanger. As the doctor concluded his tale, the listeners were eager to know about the whereabouts of the snake and asked him several questions pertaining to it. The doctor finally wrapped up his story stating that he never saw the snake again and assumed probably it was enticed by its own beauty.

Conclusion of The Snake and the Mirror

The chapter – The Snake and the Mirror teaches students that we should not be boastful of our looks and should accept whatever we have and consider it as a blessing from God. We hope this CBSE Class 9 English Beehive Prose Summary of The Snake and the Mirror has helped students to get an in-depth understanding of the chapter. Visit BYJU’S to view other resources such as CBSE Notes and CBSE study material and access different years’ question papers and sample papers. For more educational content, they can download BYJU’S: The Learning App and explore a huge collection of useful resources.

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