ICSE Class 10 English Literature Question Paper Solution 2016

After practicing the previous years ICSE Class 10 English Literature question papers, students look for the answer key or solution pdf from which they can match their answers and can check their preparation level. So, to help them in doing so, we have provided the ICSE Class 10 English Literature Question Paper Solution 2016 which contains the answers to every question along with the marking scheme for each step. Going through the ICSE Class 10 English Literature Question Paper solution pdf, students will find out their weak and strong points. They get to know where they have committed the mistakes and working on them will improve their performance in the exam. Also, they understand how to express their thoughts in a more structured and grammatically correct form during the exam.

The ICSE Class 10 English 2016 Paper 2 was of 2 hours of time duration. Students can download the ICSE Class 10 English Literature Question Paper Solution 2016 PDF from the link below and can refer to it anytime in the future.

ICSE Class 10 English Literature Question Paper 2016

Download ICSE Class 10 English Literature Question Paper Solution 2016 PDF

Students can have a look at the ICSE Class 10 English Literature Question Paper Solution 2016 below:


icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 01
icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 02
icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 03
icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 04
icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 05
icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 06
icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 07
icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 08
icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 09
icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 10
icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 11
icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 12
icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 13
icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 14
icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 15
icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 16
icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 17
icse class 10 eng lit question paper solution 2016 18


ICSE Class 10 English Literature (Paper 2) Question Paper 2016 With Solution

Question 1: Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:

Portia: As from her lord, her governor, her king.

Myself and what is mine to you and yours

Is now converted: but now I was the lord

Of this fair mansion, master of my servants,

Queen o’er myself; and even now, but now,

This house, these servants, and this same myself,

Are yours, my lord:

(i) Where are Portia and Bassanio? What has just taken place which makes Portia to speak these words? What was the inscription given in the lead casket?

(ii) What does Bassanio say in praise of Portia’s portrait?

(iii) What news saddens Bassanio on this happy occasion? What does Portia ask him to do?

(iv) Who is Balthazar? What was the work assigned to him by Portia?

(v) Where does Portia really plan to go? What similarity do we find between Portia and Antonio? What does this scene reveal about the character of Portia? Give a reason to justify your answer.



  • Belmont / A room in Portia’s house.
  • Bassanio has chosen the right casket / he has won the lottery of the caskets / he has chosen the lead casket wherein contains Portia’s picture.
  • “Who chooseth me must give and hazard all he hath.”

(ii) The picture is so life like that only a demi -god could have painted it / The eyes seem to be moving / The lips are parted with sugar breath / The painter has shown the skill of a spider in painting the hair / He has painted a golden mesh (net) to catch the hearts of men / After painting one eye the artist should have gone blind. He could not have painted the second eye.


  • Receives a letter from Antonio / none of Antonio’s ships have returned / Shylock is demanding a pound of flesh.
  • Portio asks Bassanio to go to Venice / pay Shylock and cancel the bond / Bassanio will have enough gold to pay Shylock twenty times over.


  • Servant to Portia.
  • Portia gives him a letter to hand it over to her cousin, Doctor Bellerio who lives in Padua /Collect the notes and garments and bring them to the transect or to the common ferry which trades to Venice.


  • Venice
  • Selfless generosity / love
  • Intelligent / Witty / presence of mind / courage to execute plans / selfless generosity.
  • personal response.

Question 2: Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:

But mercy is above this sceptred sway;

It is enthroned in the hearts of kings,

It is an attribute to God himself;

And earthly power doth then show likest God’s

When mercy seasons justice.

(i) Name the speaker. Why did the speaker appeal to the Jew for mercy? Earlier who else in the play appealed for mercy?

(ii) What are the three qualities of mercy which the speaker has stated just before the


(iii) Give the meaning of ‘But mercy is above this sceptred sway’. How does Shylock turn down Portia’s plea for mercy? What does he insist on?

(iv) What is Bassanio ready to do for Antonio in the court? Why is Bassanio snubbed immediately by the disguised Portia?

(v) Mention two prominent character traits of Shylock as highlighted through the scene from which the extract has been taken. Substantiate your answer with examples from the text.



  • Portia / disguised as a learned doctor of law
  • To save Antonio’s life / to free Antonio from the bond.
  • Duke

(ii) The quality of mercy is not forced / It drops like gentle rain from heaven / It is twice blessed / It blesses him that gives and him that takes / It is mightiest in mightiest / The throned monarch better than his crown.


  • The sceptre of the king is the symbol of that earth power which is temporary but Mercy is the attribute or the Power of God which is above the sceptre / But Mercy is far above this world that is ruled by man with sceptres.
  • My deeds are upon my head / he will take responsibility of what he is doing.
  • He insists on the bond / the penalty and forfeit of his bond.


  • Bassanio is ready to give twice the sum / ten times over the sum / on forfeit of his hands, his head, his heart.
  • When Bassanio says that his life itself; his wife and all the world are not with him esteemed above Antonio’s life / Bassanio is ready to sacrifice his life, his wife and the world for Antonio.


  • Cruel / revengeful / hateful / merciless / pitiless.
  • This examples – justify

Question 3: Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:

Inspector : [Sharply] Are you sure there was nobody in the room already?

De Levis : [Taken aback] I don’t know. I never thought. I didn’t look under the bed, if you mean that.

Inspector : [Jotting] Did not look under bed. Did you look under it after the theft?

De Levis : No. I didn’t.

Inspector : Ah! Now, what did you do after you came back from your bath? Just give us that precisely.

(i) What reply did De Levis give to the inspector’s last question in the extract?

(ii) What made De Levis check the contents of his pocket book? What did he find there? Whom did he go to upon discovering the theft?

(iii) Who was Robert? Where was Robert’s room? At what time did he take De Levis’ clothes and boots?

(iv) What is the Inspector’s final theory of the theft?

(v) Whom did De Levis accuse of stealing his money? What were his reasons for making this accusation?


(i) De Levis had locked the door / He had left the key in the lock / Put back his sponge / Taken

off his dressing gown and put it on the foot rails of the bed / He got into bed.


  • When he touched the pocket book it felt thinner, so he checked its contents.
  • He found shaving papers instead of notes.
  • He went to speak to Winsor about it.


  • Robert valets Mr. De Levis / Valet
  • On the ground floor at the other end of the right wing.
  • 10 o’clock

(iv) The thief was in De Levis’s room all the time. He was hiding under the bed and slipped out when he went to see Winsor / He came in with a key that fitted the lock / He came in with a skeleton key and went out by the window / He came in by the window with a rope or ladder, and went out the same way.

(v) Ronald Dancy / Dancy could have easily jumped from his balcony to the balcony of De Levis’s room / Dancy had gifted the filly to De Levis and he had been upset that De Levis had made money by selling it / Dancy’s financial condition is not good. (he is hard up)

Question 4: Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:

Mabel : [Utterly surprised] Ronny! Do they want me in Court?

Dancy : No.

Mabel : What is it, then? Why are you back?

Dancy : Spun.

Mabel : [Blank] Spun? What do you mean? What’s spun?

Dancy : The case. They’ve found out through those notes.

Mabel : Oh! [Staring at his face.] Who?

(i) Where are Mabel and Dancy at this time? What was Mabel doing just before this conversation?

(ii) Why did Mabel say, “Do they want me in court?” Explain the meaning of spun in the extract?

(iii) What ‘notes’ is Dancy talking about now? How does Mabel react immediately after the extract?

(iv) Dancy leaves a note for his best friend towards the end of the play. What is the name of his best friend? What is written in the note?

(v) What does Dancy do at the end? Why does he do that? What is your opinion of Mabel and Dancy?


(i) Mabel and Dancy are in the sitting room of their flat. Mabel was sitting on the sofa with a newspaper in her lap. She had a bottle of smelling salts in her hand. Two or three newspapers were dumped on the arm of the sofa. She had been glancing through the newspapers one after the other as if she couldn’t stay away from them. She seems to be lost in her own thoughts, staring blankly at the wall from time to time.


  • When Dancy comes back earlier than expected, she thinks that may be she was wanted in the Court as a witness. Levis had filed a case and the court proceedings were going on.
  • Spun means finished. Dancy means the case is over.


  • Dancy is talking about the money that was stolen from Levis’s room in Meldon Court. The Inspector had the numbers of the notes of large denominations published in the newspapers. Gilman, a grocer, had discovered that Ricardo, a customer of his, had paid him in one of those stolen notes. He had reported the matter to Mr.Twisden. On questioning, Ricardo had told Mr.Twisden that the money had been given to him by Dancy.
  • Mabel is shocked and is unable to take in the news. She buries her face in the pillows of the sofa and cries out “Don’t Ronny! Oh! No! Don’t!” She is horrified.


  • Major Colford.
  • Suicide was the only decent thing he could do. It would be really unfair to Mabel if he continued to live.Hecalled his death another jump.Hespoke of a pistol-keeping faith. Heasked Colford to look after Mabel.


  • He commits suicide. He shoots himself with his pistol in his bedroom.
  • He could not face the humiliation of being arrested as a thief and bringing shame to the family.
  • Personal response

Question 5: Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:

The woods are lovely, dark and deep.

But I have promises to keep,

And miles to go before I sleep,

And miles to go before I sleep.

(Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening: Robert Frost)

(i) Who is ‘I’ referred to in the extract? Which season of the year is it? What evidence is there in the poem to support your answer?

(ii) Who has made him aware of his mistake? How does it make the speaker aware of his mistake? What does it seem to say?

(iii) What are the three sounds heard?

(iv) What has been said earlier by the poet about the owner of the woods?

(v) What does lovely, dark and deep suggest? What is the underlying significance in the repetition of the last two lines of the extract? Mention the moral tag that the poet attaches to the poem.



  • Poet / rider / traveler
  • Winter
  • Winter solstice / 22 Dec / shortest and darkest evening of the year / snow falling.


  • His horse
  • The horse gives his harness bells a shake.
  • To ask if there is some mistake to stop without a farmhouse near.


  • the sound of easy wind
  • downy flake / snow fall
  • harness bells


  • whose woods these are I think I know
  • His house is in the village
  • He will not see me stopping here


  • Attractions / temptations / sensuous enjoyment.
  • duty / responsibilities to be done before normal sleep and duty / responsibilities to be completed before the final sleep i.e. death.
  • moral tag

Question 6: Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:

The morning stretched calm, beautiful, and warm.

Sprawling half clad, I gazed out at the form

Of shimmering leaves and shadows. Suddenly

A strong flash, then another, startled me.

I saw the old stone lantern brightly lit.

(A Doctor’s Journal Entry for August 6, 1945: Vikram Seth)

(i) In which country did the incident described in the poem occur? What had caused the flashes? What happened to his home soon after?

(ii) Describe the injuries suffered by the Doctor.

(iii) What was his wife’s name? What happened to a house standing before them?

(iv) How does he describe the people he met on the way?

(v) Why were the people walking with their hands away from their bodies? What was common to all of them? What message does the poem convey?



  • Japan
  • Nuclear bomb or atomic bomb or bomb
  • The roof and the walls of the house collapsed/ there was timber and debris all around

(ii) The doctor was badly wounded / blood gushed out from the artery in his neck / A splinter jutted from his thigh / His thigh was mangled / legs stiff with dried blood / His right side bled / There was a wound on his cheek / Pieces of glass had pierced his body


  • Yecko-San
  • A house standing before them tilted / swayed / toppled / crashed.

(iv) He met a soldier standing silently / He saw shadowy forms of people / They were looking like ghosts or scarecrows / They were all silent / They were walking with their arms stretched out / He saw a woman and a child who were both naked


  • The people kept their hands away from their bodies they were afraid to chafe flesh against flesh/ the friction caused them pain.
  • Silence was common to all/ there were no cries of anguish/ even a single word could not be heard
  • It is an anti-war poem/ conveys the horror of war/ science can destroy the whole world/ war is futile.

Question 7: Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:

“That only leaves October, November and December,” said the Queen. “And after that

we shall have to begin all over again.”

“No, we shan’t,” said the King, “because I think twelve daughters are enough for any

man and after the birth of dear little December I shall be reluctantly compelled to cut

off your head.”

He cried bitterly when he said this, for he was extremely fond of the Queen.

(i) Why did the king change the names of his daughters so many times?

(ii) In what way was Princess September different from her sisters? What reason does the author give for this difference in their temperaments?

(iii) Which unusual birthday tradition did the King of Siam observe? Mention some of the gifts that he gave.

(iv) Why did Princess September put the Nightingale in a cage? What reasons did she give to the bird for putting it in a cage and then keeping it there?

(v) How did the bird behave upon being locked in a cage? What is the message of the story?



  • First the king had two daughters and he called them Night and Day.
  • Then he had two more so he changed their names and called them Spring, Autumn, Winter and Summer. OR after the four seasons.
  • Had three more so he changed their names again and called them by the seven days of the week.
  • When he had more daughters he called them by the months of the year.


  • September was sweet/ charming /and good-natured
  • while the sisters were bitter/ malicious/ spiteful.
  • Their natures had become bitter because their names were changed so many times


  • Instead of receiving gifts he gave them.
  • He gave away all his wedding presents/ all the loyal addresses the mayors of the cities presented him/ all his crowns /he gave each of his daughters a green parrot in a golden cage.


  • September’s sisters had told her to do so.
  • She told the bird that some of her mother’s cats were prowling about / the bird would be safer in the cage/ it was a beautiful golden cage made by the best workmen/ it will have three meals a day served by her maids of honour./ The bird will have nothing to worry about.

(v) The bird did not like being locked up in the cage / It kept shouting, “Let me out, Let me out.” / It stopped singing / The bird wanted to see the trees, the lake and the rice growing in the fields / Refused to eat anything / The true secret of happiness is freedom/ or friendship demands sacrifice/ or any relevant answer.

Question 8: The Last Leaf explores the theme of Friendship and Self-sacrifice. Discuss this with close reference to O’Henry’s ‘The Last Leaf’.

Answer: The story presents the deep and sincere friendship between Sue and Johnsy, two striving artists. The two girls met each other only six months before. Their common taste in art, food and fashion instantly sparked a friendship, and the two decided to share an apartment. Their decision of starting a joint studio may initially have been a matter of need and mutual help in time of poverty, but they soon develop a profound relationship. Their friendship is marked by love, loyalty, sacrifice and sincerity.

When Johnsy is down with pneumonia, Sue attends to her day and night, nursing her. This shows her eagerness to be with her friend through thick and thin. She calls the doctor and spends her time nursing her ailing friend, Johnsy, even though she has to submit her drawings the next day. Johnsy had lost her will to live. Her eyes were always fixed on an ivy vine on the wall of the opposite brick house. She had imagined that when the last leaf would fall, she would die. She tries her best to keep up Johnsy’s spirits. Sue bears with her friend’s irritable and stubborn nature. It is her care and nursing which help Johnsy’s quick recovery.

The story also throws light on the relationship that Behrman shares with Sue and Johnsy. He even poses for Sue for her painting. He is fond of the two as he too is a striving artist. When the old man gets to know about Johnsy’s strange fancy, he makes up his mind to do something to save the young girl’s life. He goes out in the heavy rain and paints an ivy leaf on the wall, after the last leaf has fallen. The leaf was painted so brilliantly that it appeared a real ivy leaf to Johnsy. This revives in Johnsy the will to live. While painting, he gets thoroughly drenched and catches pneumonia. He soon dies, being old and weak. Thus, the old artist sacrifices his own life to save Johnsy. The noble soul of this ordinary old man, who accomplished an extraordinary feat by sacrificing his life is praiseworthy. His masterpiece and the sacrifice he makes immortalises him.

Question 9: Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:

These three had elaborated old Major’s teachings into a complete system of thought, to

which they gave the name of Animalism.

(i) Who had elaborated on Old Major’s teachings?

(ii) When and where did they hold their secret meetings? How did the meetings end?

(iii) What had the Old Major said about the ‘nature of this life of ours’?

(iv) Who were the most faithful disciples? How did they contribute towards the preparations for the rebellion?

(v) How did the animals celebrate the day after the rebellion?


(i) Two young boars- Snowball and Napoleon; a small fat pig- Squealer


  • Several nights a week, after Jones was asleep.
  • In the barn.
  • Ended with the singing of ‘Beasts of England’.

(iii) Their lives were miserable, laborious, short/they were born ,given just so much food as would keep the breath in their bodies/those of them who were capable were forced to work to the last of their strength/the very instant their usefulness had come to an end, they were killed cruelly/no animal in England knew the meaning of happiness or leisure after he was a year old/no animal in England was free/the life of an animal was misery/slavery.


  • The two cart-horses — Boxer and Clover.
  • They absorbed everything that they were told and passed it onto the other animals by simple arguments/unfailing in their attendance at the secret meetings in the barn/led the singing of ‘Beasts of England’

(v) Raced out into the pasture together / Rushed to the top of the knoll and gazed around them in the clear morning light/gambolled round and round / hurled themselves into the air in great leaps of excitement/rolled in the dew/cropped mouthfuls of the sweet summer grass/kicked up clods of the black earth and snuffed its rich scent/made a tour of inspection of the whole farm and surveyed with speechless admiration the ploughland, the hayfield, the orchard, the pool, the


Question 10: Give an account of how Napoleon and his companions were unjust and cruel in their behaviour towards the other animals.

Answer: As soon as Jessie and Bluebell gave birth to puppies Napoleon took the away saying that he will take care of their education.

The milk and the apples were consumed only by the pigs. Other animals did not get a share in it. Squealer explained to the animals that milk and apple were necessary for the wellbeing of the pigs since they are brainworkers. If the pigs failed in their duty Jones would come back. Hence milk and apple were reserved for the pigs alone.

Napoleon’s trained dogs chased Snowball out of the farm. Now Napoleon became the sole leader of animal farm. He formed a special committee of pigs. He told the pigs that they would receive their orders every Sunday morning and there would be no more debates. Some of the pigs squealed in disapproval but fell silent when the dogs growled at them. Squealer convinced the animals that Snowball had been a dangerous criminal.

The animals worked like slaves to build the windmill. Any animal who was absent had his rations reduced by half. Napoleon declared that eggs of the hens would be sold to obtained materials which were necessary. The pigs moved into the farmhouse and started sleeping in the beds.

The following winter was very difficult for the animals. The windmill had fallen because its walls were too thin and they had to build it again. The animals were always cold and hungry. The corn ration was reduced. Starvation seemed inevitable for the animals.

Four hundred eggs a week were to be sold to procure grain and keep the farm going. The hens rebelled by smashing their eggs. Napoleon punished the hens by stopping their rations. Nine of the hens died.

Napoleon called a meeting where his dogs seized four of the pigs and dragged them to Napoleon’s feet. Napoleon asked them to confess to their crimes. The pigs were forced to make a false confession after which the dogs tore their throats out and killed them. Then three hens also confessed and were slaughtered. A goose, three sheep were all slain on the spot. That tale of confessions and executions went on until there was a pile of corpses lying before Napoleon’s feet.

When Boxer who was the most hardworking animal on the farm grew old and sick, he was sold to a horse slaughterer. It was announced that he had died in a hospital at Willingdon and had received proper medical care. The money that came from selling Boxer was used to buy a crate of whisky for the pigs.

Years passed and the lives of the animals grew tougher than before. They were always hungry and cold. Only the pigs and the dogs grew richer. The animals gave up their demand of retiring the older animals. No animal ever retired.

Question 11: Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:

NEXT MORNING, I HAD AN IDEA. IT WAS nothing clear cut, merely speculative,

but I considered it all the way to school. Then, after assembly, as soon as they were

quiet I waded in. This might be a bit rough, I thought, but here goes.

“I am your teacher, and I think it right and proper that I should let you know

something of my plans for this class.”

(i) Who is ‘I’ in the above lines? Where is he? In what mood was he when he entered the class?

(ii) What did the narrator expect from his students at this moment?

(iii) Who entered soon after this? What did she do that made the narrator angry? What

challenge did he give her?

(iv) What was the effect of the challenge on her? What plan did the narrator have in mind regarding the conduct of the young ladies? Whose help did he seek for this?

(v) What did the narrator expect from the boys? What was the reaction of the children when they heard the narrator’s expectations?



  • Mr. Braithwaite
  • Greenslade School – top class
  • Serious/ thoughtful/ firm/ determined

(ii) listen to him/ no interruption from his students/ when he was through, the students were

permitted to speak/ they were allowed to ask what they didn’t understand/ show their disapproval if they disagreed with his view point.


  • Pamela Dare
  • came late/ barged into the room in an undignified manner
  • Pamela was asked to give a demonstration of the first way of entering a room, in front of the class i.e enter in a controlled and dignified manner.


  • Angry/ humiliated/ stood up and walked out, quietly closing the door behind her/ re-entered with grace and dignity
  • in future the girls must show themselves both worthy and appreciative of the courtesies men will show them/ there were certain things that needed attention
  • Mrs. Dale Evans


  • to keep themselves cleaner and tidier/ set a standard in all things for the rest of the school as the younger ones ape them/ be courteous/ give best work
  • listened patiently/ showed interest/ quiet/ observant/ few disapproved

Question 12: Give an account of the incidents of racial discrimination that Braithwaite has described in the novel ‘To Sir with Love’?

Answer: Braithwaite was travelling on a bus to Aldgate. A smartly dressed woman got up on the bus. She refused to sit next to Braithwaite because he was a negro. Only when Braithwaite got off the bus did the woman sit down.

Braithwaite had a science degree and experience in engineering technology. The Appointments Officer assured him that he will get a good civilian job. He received a letter listing three firms each of which had vacancies suitable for him. He wrote to each one and received very encouraging replies along with invitations for interviews.

The first firm he visited had a high international reputation. The receptionist was surprised to see a black candidate for the interview. She directed him to the office. Her manner was stiff with disapproval and anger. She maintained silent hostility and avoided looking at Braithwaite.

He was interviewed extensively by four men. They asked him a range of questions that he answered easily. The interview went off very well. However, when the interview was over he was informed that the firm will not be able to hire him. If he was hired he would be placed in a superior position than some of the English employees, and they would be offended by a black person having a position of authority.

He realised that the whole interview had been a waste of time. They had agreed on their decision before he had walked into that office. They had not realised he was black when they saw his name on the application.

Braithwaite went to a telephone booth and called the two remaining firms. He told them he was a Negro and in each case he was politely told that the vacancy was already filled. To many in Britain a negro is a ‘darky’ or a ‘nigger’ or a ‘black’.

Braitwaite found it impossible to get a job. He even advertised, mentioning his qualifications and the colour of his skin, but there were no takers. Once he was called for an interview to an electrical firm. There too he was told that he was overqualified and would not fit in there.

When he started dating Gillian he often faced disapproving glances at the sight of a white woman in the company of a black man. The staff at a restaurant they went to was deliberately discourteous with him.

We hope ICSE Class 10 English Literature Question Paper Solution 2016 must have provided an insight into the 2016 Question paper and their solutions. Going through this paper solution will surely help students in their exam preparation. Students can also find the answers of other papers of ICSE Class 10 Previous Years Questions by clicking here. Happy Learning and stay tuned to BYJU’S for the latest update on ICSE/CBSE/State Boards/Competitive exams. Also, don’t forget to download the BYJU’S App.


Leave a Comment

Your Mobile number and Email id will not be published.