ICSE Class 10 English Literature Question Paper 2019 With Solution

English Literature is a language subject, so most of the students feel that scoring high marks in language subjects is not possible. Due to this, they don’t even put their effort into solving subjects like English Literature. But, if one has a basic understanding of grammar and literature, then scoring marks in English Literature is not as difficult as it looks. So, for making it easy for students, we have provided the ICSE Class 10 English Literature Question Paper Solution 2019.

These solutions contain the answers to each question of ICSE Class 10 English Literature Question Paper 2019 and going through them will help students in learning the answers writing and expressing skills in the exam.

The ICSE Class 10 English Literature 2019 Paper 2 exam was conducted on 25th February 2019. The exam started at 11 am, and students were allotted 2 hours of time duration to finish the Literature English paper. Students can download the ICSE Class 10 English Literature Question Paper Solution 2019 PDF from the link below.

English Literature Question Paper 2019

Download ICSE Class 10 English Literature Question Paper 2019 Solution PDF

Students can have a look at the ICSE Class 10 English Question Paper Solution 2019 below:

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ICSE Class 10 English Literature Paper 2 Question Paper 2019 With Solution

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

Bassanio: To you, Antonio,

I owe the most, in money and in love;

And from your love I have a warranty

To unburden all my plots and purposes

How to get clear of all the debts I owe.

Antonio: I pray you, good Bassanio, let me know it;

(i) Describe Antonio’s mood at the beginning of this scene.

State any two reasons that Antonio’s friends, who were present, gave to explain his mood.

Answer: Describe Antonio’s mood at the beginning of this scene.

  • Antonio’s mood: sad / despondent / gloomy / depressed/ melancholic/ weary of the world etc. (Accept any word synonymous with the above) State any two reasons that Antonio’s friends, who were present, gave to explain his mood.
  • Salario and Salario say that Antonio’s mind is on his rich merchant ships/ tossing on the ocean
  • Antonio was concerned / worried about possible misfortunes – Fear of tempests / mudflats/dangerous rocks that could wreck his ships
  • A must be in love
  • Not happy because he was sad
  • A deliberately wants to appear wise/ grave/ philosophical (Any two)

(ii) What promise did Antonio make to Bassanio immediately after this conversation?

Answer: What promise did Antonio make to Bassanio immediately after this conversation?

  • His ‘purse’ (wealth)/ unlock wealth/ resources
  • His ‘person’ (himself)
  • His ‘extremest means’ (every last resource in his possession)
  • Extend every help he could (to help Bassanio as long as Bassanio’s plans were as honourable as he himself was)

(iii) What did Bassanio say to Antonio about ‘a lady richly left’ in Belmont?

Answer: The ‘lady richly left’ in Belmont is described by Bassanio as:

  • Beautiful (fair / fairer than the word)
  • Virtuous (of wondrous virtues)
  • Called Portia
  • He had received ‘fair speechless messages’ sometimes from her eyes
  • Her worth and fame attracted renowned suitors (Any three)

He compares her to the golden fleece and her suitors to Jason(s) from Classical mythology.

  • Sunny locks
  • Not inferior to Portia – Cato’s daughter/ Brutus’ wife
  • The world is not ignorant of her worth

(iv) Why was Antonio unable to lend Bassanio the money that he needed? How did he propose to help his friend?

Answer: Why was Antonio unable to lend Bassanio the money that he needed?

  • All his ‘fortunes were at sea’ (invested in his many merchant ships)
  • Antonio has no money
  • Has nothing of value (commodity) which he could sell to raise the money needed

How did he propose to help his friend?

Antonio proposes

  • that both he and Bassanio should make enquiries among the wealthy merchants
  • to see if they can borrow the money –
  • (try what my credit in Venice can do)

(v) What does the above extract reveal of the relationship between Antonio and Bassanio?

Mention one way in which this relationship was put to the test later in the play.

Answer: What does the above extract reveal of the relationship between Antonio and Bassanio?

  • Shows that Antonio and Bassanio were very good friends
  • That Bassanio has always relied on Antonio both for financial (money) as well as emotional (love) support.
  • Bassanio is assured of Antonio’s love and care. Confides all his plans in him – clear all his debts with Antonio’s help.
  • Bassanio exploits Antonio’s love/ trust

Mention one way in which this relationship was put to the test later in the play.

  • When Shylock demands his pound of flesh and Antonio is willing to sacrifice his life for Bassanio.
  • When Bassanio receives Antonio’s letter in Belmont, he is willing to drop everything – go to Venice
  • When Bassanio agrees to give away the wedding ring given to him by Portia – and sacrifice his love (Portia) for Antonio.
  • (Any mention of Antonio/ Bassanio being willing to sacrifice anything for the other … wife/ life, etc.)

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

Bassanio: A gentle scroll. – Fair lady, by your leave; [Kissing her]

I come by note, to give and to receive.

Like one of two contending in a prize,

That thinks he hath done well in people’s eyes

Hearing applause and universal shout

Giddy in spirit, still gazing, in a doubt

Whether those peals of praise be his or no;

(i) Where did Bassanio find the ‘gentle scroll’? What ‘prize’ had Bassanio just won?

Answer: Where did Bassanio find the ‘gentle scroll’?

  • Inside the leaden Casket / the casket that contained Portia’s portrait.

What ‘prize’ had Bassanio just won?

  • Portia’s hand in marriage

(ii) Explain why Bassanio said he felt ‘Giddy in spirit, still gazing, in a doubt’.

Answer: Bassanio felt

  • ‘Giddy’ / light headed with relief / delighted/ excited/ happy that he had chosen the right casket.
  • ‘Still gazing in a doubt’ – dazed / not able to believe that he had made the right choice and won Portia
  • He had succeeded in a ‘competition’ where many had failed.
  • It had still not been validated/ confirmed by Portia

(Alternately a paraphrase of the lines in the extract.)

(iii) Shortly after this exchange, Portia gives Bassanio a ring as a token of her affection. What did the gift symbolise?

Answer: The ring was symbolic –

  • a token that said that she was giving Bassanio control over her house /her servants/ herself
  • Portia’s trust/ love/ commitment/ loyalty/ possession/ bond of marriage
  • If Bassanio loses the ring it means he doesn’t love her (Any three)

(iv) What assurance did Bassanio give her when he accepted the ring?

Answer: Bassanio promises

  • When the ring parts from his finger
  • then his life would leave his body
  • Bassanio could be declared dead


Bassanio + would die + before he parted with the ring.

(v) What did Portia urge Bassanio to do when she learnt that his friend Antonio was in trouble?


  • Pay off the bond / offer twice or three times the sum to the Jew/ pay 6000 and deface the bond/ double 6000 and treble that/ pay the debt 20 times over
  • Marry her
  • Leave for Venice immediately
  • Use her wealth to pay off the debt and
  • save Antonio from Shylock
  • Bring Antonio back with him to Belmont. (Any three)

What aspect of her character is revealed through her words?

  • Personal response – any plausible trait e.g. loving wife/ trusting/compassionate / willing to share her wealth helpful / caring, etc.

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

Duke: You hear the learn’d Bellario, what he

writes: And here, I take it, is the doctor come.

[Enter Portia, dressed like a Doctor of Laws]

Give me your hand. Come you from old Bellario?

Portia: I did, my lord.

Duke: You are welcome: take your place.

Are you acquainted with the difference

That holds this present question in the court?

(i) Where is this scene set?

Answer: A court (of justice)/ in Venice

Why was Portia there?

To assist at Antonio’s trial/ to save Antonio from Shylock/ from the bond he had signed with Shylock/ to act as a lawyer/ to help her husband save Antonio. (Any three)

(ii) What reason had Bellario given for his absence?

Answer: He was very sick/ ill

Whom had he sent in his stead?

Balthazar / a young doctor of Rome/ Portia in disguise

(iii) Bellario’s letter stated that he had taken some measures to prepare the ‘young and learned doctor’ to deal with the case. What were they?


  • explained the details of the ‘controversy’ between Antonio and Shylock
  • they had studied many law books together
  • Bellario had given Balthazar his opinion/ advice

(iv) What was the ‘difference’ between Shylock the Jew and Antonio the merchant that the Duke was unable to resolve?


  • Antonio had borrowed three thousand ducats from Shylock for a period of three months.
  • Antonio’s ships had been lost at sea – he was bankrupt and unable to repay the debt.
  • Shylock was adamant in demanding his pound of flesh – refusing all offers of money.

(v) How does Portia succeed in saving Antonio?

Answer: Portia grants Shylock his bond but says:

  • that not one drop of Antonio’s blood must be shed – if it were then all his land and goods would be confiscated by the laws of Venice
  • Shylock had to cut out exactly one pound of flesh – if he cut even the smallest bit in excess of a pound Shylock would be put to death.

What does this reveal of her character?

Personal Response: Any plausible answer such as – Portia proves that she is clever/ quick- witted etc.

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

Giles: I beg your pardon. Did you say something?

Trotter: Yes, Mr. Ralston, I said ‘Is there an extension?’ (He crosses to Centre.)

Giles: Yes, up in our bedroom.

Trotter: Go and try it up there for me, will you?

(Giles exits to the stairs, carrying the glove and bus ticket and looking dazed. Trotter continues to trace the wire to the window. He pulls back the curtain and opens the window, trying to follow the wire. He crosses to the arch up Right, goes out and returns with a torch. He moves to the window, jumps out and bends down, looking, then disappears out of sight. It is practically dark. Mrs. Boyle enters from the library up Left, shivers and notices the open window.)

Mrs. Boyle: (Moving to the window) Who has left this window open?

(i) Why did Giles fail to hear what Trotter had said earlier?

Answer: Giles’ mind was on something else / preoccupied distracted

Why did Giles look ‘dazed’?

Because he had found a London bus ticket hidden inside / the glove that Mollie had worn the previous day


This meant she had been in London on the day of the murder

(ii) What was Trotter attempting to do? Why?


  • Trying to trace the telephone line
  • Find out if the telephone wires had been deliberately cut


It would mean that someone wanted to isolate and cut off Monkswell Manor.

(iii) Why did Mrs. Boyle close the window?

Answer: She was feeling cold / shivered / to shut out the draught

What did the voice on the radio say about the ‘mechanics of fear’?

Voice on the radio invites the listener to imagine being alone in a room/ Suggests that it is late in the afternoon/ that a door opens softly behind the listener / creates an eerie atmosphere. (Any two)

(iv) How did the murderer mask the sounds of the killing?

Answer: By raising the volume of the radio

Who entered the room immediately after the murder?


What did this person see?

Mrs. Boyle lying strangled in front of the sofa

(v) Who was the victim?

Answer: Mrs. Boyle

Why was the victim murdered?

She had been one of the magistrates who had been responsible for sending the three children to Longridge Farm.

What was the ‘signature tune’ that the murderer whistled?

Three Blind Mice

What is the significance of this tune in the context of the play?

The three blind mice represented the three helpless, innocent children who had been left at the mercy of the cruel farmer and his wife


Death for the three who had been responsible for the ill-treatment of the children

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

Trotter: (Leaning on the refectory table) Those simple actions took you rather a long time, didn’t they, Mr. Ralston?

Giles: I don’t think so. (He moves away to the stairs)

Trotter: I should say you definitely – took your time over them.

Giles: I was thinking about something.

Trotter: Very well. Now then, Mr. Wren, I’ll have your account of where you were.

(i) What ‘simple actions’ of Giles was Trotter referring to?

Answer: Giles checking on the (telephone) extension/ looking out of the window for signs that the wires had been cut.

Where had Giles been?

Upstairs in the bedroom (Giles and Mollie’s room)

Who had sent him there?


(ii) How did Christopher Wren account for his whereabouts at the time of the murder?


  • Christopher Wren said he’d been in the kitchen
  • Gone to see if he could help Mollie Ralston with any cooking/ he loved to cook.
  • After that went upstairs to his bedroom – wanted to be alone / wanted to brush his hair.

(iii) Where was Paravicini at that time?

Answer: In the drawing room

What was he doing?

  • playing the piano softly
  • picking out the tune of ‘Three Blind Mice’/ playing a haunting tune.

(iv) Whom did Giles accuse of having committed the murder?

Answer: Christopher Wren

On what did he base this accusation?

Only Christopher fits the description / of the eldest of the three children at Longridge Farm/ Calls him mentally unstable / abnormal / now 23 years old.

(v) Mollie shared her suspicions regarding the identity of the murderer with Trotter, later in this scene.

Whom did she suspect of being the murderer?

Major Metcalf

What reasons did she give for her suspicion?

  • Felt Major Metcalf might be the father of the children – the father had been a sergeant serving abroad.
  • What if he had come back – maybe after being a prisoner with the Japanese – found his wife died and children had gone through terrible suffering and one had died?
  • He might have gone ‘off his head’ and wanted revenge.

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

Trotter: Yes. You’ve been extraordinarily foolish, you know. You’ve run a very good chance of being killed by holding out on me. As a result, you’ve been in serious danger more than once.

Mollie: I don’t know what you mean.

Trotter: (moving slowly above the sofa table to the Right of the sofa; still quite natural and friendly) Come now, Mrs. Ralston. We policemen aren’t quite so dumb as you think. All along I’ve realized that you had first- hand knowledge of the Longridge Farm affair. You know Mrs. Boyle was the magistrate concerned. In fact, you knew all about it. Why didn’t you speak up and say so?

Mollie: (Very much affected) I don’t understand. I wanted to forget-forget. (She sits at the Left end of the sofa.)

(i) What was the ‘Longridge Farm’ affair?


  • Three children (2 boys and a girl) – The Corrigan children were brought before the court as in need of care and protection.
  • They were put in the care of Farmer John Stanning and his wife Maureen Stanning at Longridge Farm
  • One of the children subsequently died – result of criminal negligence and persistent ill- treatment – Farmer and wife were sentenced to imprisonment.

(ii) Trotter revealed to Mollie some facts that he had uncovered about her past. What were they?


  • That her maiden name was Waring
  • She had been a school teacher
  • The Corrigan children had attended the school where she had been a teacher.
  • Jimmy Corrigan had written her a letter begging for help – she had not replied

(iii) What did Mollie want to forget?

Answer: Mollie wanted to forget the case / the guilt and the shame associated with it.

How was she linked with the ‘Longridge Farm affair’?

  • Mollie was ashamed because she had been unable to help Jimmy Corrigan when he wrote a letter to his kind teacher (Mollie Waring) begging her to help him and his siblings.
  • But Mollie was down with pneumonia at that time and when she finally read the letter weeks later, Jimmy had already died.

(iv) How did Trotter manage to pass himself off as a policeman?

Answer: Rang Monkswell Manor from a call box /said he was speaking from police headquarters/ that sergeant Trotter was on his way/ cut the phone wires before he came to the front door.

How had he reached Monkswell Manor?

On skis

(v) What did Trotter reveal to Mollie about his true identify?

Answer: Trotter reveals that he was Georgie Corrigan / Jimmy’s elder brother / the oldest of the Corrigan children.

How was Mollie saved at the end of the play?

  • Just as he reaches for her neck Ms. Casewell (his sister/ Kathy) enters
  • Kathy reveals that she is his sister – reminds him of their time together as children on the farm and gently leads him away

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

“Now tell us what it was all about”.

Young Peterkin, he cries.

And little Wilhelmine looks up

With wonder –waiting eyes, “Now tell us all about the war,

And what they fought each other for”.

— After Blenheim, Robert Southey

(i) Who are Peterkin and Wilhelmine?

Little children / siblings / Old Kaspar’s grandchildren.

How does the poet describe the scene at the beginning of the poem?

It was an evening in summer / the sun was about to set/ Old Kaspar had finished his work for the day/ he was sitting in front of his cottage basking in the sun/ watching little Wilhelmine, his granddaughter at play. (Any two)

(ii) What did Young Peterkin find and where?


  • A skull (of some poor soldier)
  • beside a rivulet/ stream/ river

Describe it.

It was large /round / smooth

(iii) Who is referred to as “each other”?

  • The English/ Austria
  • the French/ Bavaria

What did they fight for?

War of Succession/ victory/ land and power/ no one really remembers the cause of the war. Old Kaspar cannot recall what the English and the French fought over. (Any one)

(iv) To whom are the words in the extract addressed?

Answer: Kaspar/ the grandfather

How was this person’s family affected by the war?

His father’s home had been burnt to the ground / He, his wife and child had been forced to flee for their lives/ lost their homes – made refugees by the war/ left with no shelter.

(v) What, according to the poet, are the consequences that are often associated with great and famous victories?

Answer: Widespread death and destruction/ countryside wasted far and wide with fire and sword / women and children /pregnant (childing) women new born babies died – thousands of bodies lay rotting in the sun / many thousands of soldiers killed. (Any three)

What message does the poet want to convey to the readers?

Poet’s message – war leads to meaningless death and destruction – wasteful – serves no real purpose – with time the cause of the war is forgotten but the devastating effects linger – makes refugees out of ordinary people/ anti-war (Any one).

Question 8: Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:

There’s nobody on the house-tops

now……..Just a palsied few at the

windows set; For the best of the sight is, all allow,

At the Shambles’ Gate…………or, better yet,

By the very scaffold’s foot, I trow.

— The Patriot, Robert

(i) Who is the speaker?

Answer: The Patriot

Where is he being taken?

To the gallows/ Shambles’ Gate/ scaffold


To be hanged/ he has lost favour / support of the people.

(ii) Describe the scene when he had walked down the same street a year ago.

Answer: Roses / myrtle / flowers strewn in his path/ Large crowds gathered on rooftops to catch a glimpse of him / it seemed as if the roof were heaving and swaying/ The church spires were ablaze with colourful flags/ church bells were rung/ old walls rocked – signs of public adulation all round. (Any three)

(iii) Where does the speaker think all the people had gathered that day?

Answer: At the Shambles’ Gate or at the foot of the gallows/ scaffold

Why does he think so?

They would be assured of the best view – ringside view/to watch him being hanged publicly/ the people were angry with him/ No one on the rooftops, only palsied few at the windows (Any two)

(iv) Describe the speaker’s physical condition.

Answer: He’s drenched in the rain/ His hands are tied behind his back/ rope cuts into his wrist/ blood trickles down his forehead/ in pain caused by stones flung at him by people. (Any three)

(v) What is the central message of the poem?


  • Public adulation is short lived / people are fickle-minded.
  • Praise and glory are fleeting – do not last.

(Either there must be two separate points or one message + explanation)

Does the poem end on a note of hope or despair? Give one reason for your answer.

Personal Response:

  • Hope
  • the patriot believes that God will reward him according to his true merit or any other plausible reason.


  • Despair
  • Please accept any plausible reason – e.g. he is bitter and disillusioned – believes he did so much for the people, yet they did not appreciate all that he had done.

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

All round the field spectators were gathered

Cheering on all the young women and men Then

the final event of the day was approaching

The last race about to begin.

— Nine Gold Medals, David Roth

(i) Where had the ‘young women and men’ come from?

Answer: From many countries

What had brought them together?

The desire to compete / prove themselves / win medals at the Special Olympics/ participate in the Olympic games/ to win glory for their country (Any one)

How had they prepared themselves for the event?

Spent a long time/ many weeks and months in training.

(ii) What was the last event of the day?

Answer: The one hundred metres run

How many athletes were participating in this event?


What signal were they waiting for?

The sound of the gun / pistol

(iii) What happened to the youngest athlete half way through the race?


  • Youngest athlete stumbled / staggered
  • fell to the ground/ on his knees

How did he respond?

Cried out in frustration and anguish /all his dreams and efforts had been ‘dashed in the dirt.’

(iv) What ‘strange’ turn did the story take at this point?

Answer: The other eight athletes stopped in their tracks/ one they turned round/ came back helped him / lifted the lad to his feet/ joined hands / walked to the finish line (Any three).

(v) Why does the poet say that the banner – ‘Special Olympics’ could not have been nearer the mark?

Answer: Poet uses Word play (pun)

  • Special Olympics – races for people with special needs / specially abled athletes
  • The actions of the athletes (descriptions of the actions or a brief paraphrase of the poem) made this event ‘special’ in a different sense – remarkable
  • Their actions embodied the true spirit of sportsmanship and took it beyond the level of petty competition.

What human quality does the poem celebrate?

Personal response – the human quality of cooperation / collaboration / compassion / caring etc.

Question 10: Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:

It 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.

But for Mr. Oliver it did not end here.

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.

(i) Who was Mr. Oliver?

Answer: (Anglo-Indian) teacher

Where did he encounter ‘It’?

  • On his way home/ back (from the Simla Bazaar)
  • In the pine forest
  • ‘It’ was sitting on a rock (Any two)

(ii) Where did Mr. Oliver work?

Answer: In a school

Why did Life magazine describe this place as the ‘Eton of the East’?

  • School was run like an English Public School
  • Attended mostly by boys from wealthy Indian families
  • Boys wore blazers, caps and ties. (Any two)

(iii) Why had Mr. Oliver approached ‘It’ in the first place?

Answer: Oliver spotted the figure of a boy sitting alone on a rock/ boys were not supposed to be out at night/ sensed something was wrong/ boy appeared to be crying / a strange, soundless weeping that make Oliver uneasy. (Any two)

What had he mistaken it for?

A school boy/ miscreant

(iv) What is a lantern?

Answer: Lamp with a transparent case (usually made of glass) to protect the flame or bulb – carried by a long handle by which it can be hung.

Who was holding the lantern?

A man / figure who Mr. Oliver mistook for the watchman.

Why did Mr. Oliver feel relieved at the sight of the lantern?

He was afraid/ lantern / light meant hope in the dark / horror-filled night after his strange encounter/ relief from darkness/ calmness and safety – lantern in the hands of a watchman meant safety and help. (Any one)

(v) Briefly describe the meeting between the lantern-bearer and Mr. Oliver.


  • Mr. Oliver fled from the strange apparition – he was lost and terrified without his torch to guide him.
  • Relieved and filled with hope he stumbled upto the watchman and described his recent terrifying encounter with the creature with no eyes, ears, nose and mouth.
  • The watchman lifted the lantern to his face and asked ‘Do you mean it was like this, Sahib? He too had no eyes, ears, no features at all – not even an eyebrow. At that moment the wind blew out the lamp.

State one reason why ‘A Face in the Dark’ could be considered a horror story.

The setting / darkness / strange encounter/ faceless boy/ man/ story is open ended – reader does not know how the story ends. (Any plausible response)

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

An angry athlete is an athlete who will make mistakes, as any coach will tell you. I was no exception. On the first of my three qualifying jumps, I leaped from several inches beyond the take-off board for a foul.

(i) When and where is this story set?

Answer: Story set started in the Summer of 1936/ Olympic Games in Berlin/ Germany.

What reason does the narrator Jesse Owens give for the heightened nationalistic feelings at this time?

Hitler’s insistence that his athletes were members of a ‘master/ Aryan/ superior race’ led to heightened nationalistic feelings.

(ii) In which event had Owens been confident of winning a gold medal? Why?

Answer: The running broad jump/ long jump


  • A year ago, Jesse Owens had set the world record (26 feet 8-¼ inches as a sophomore at the Ohio State University).
  • Had trained for 6 years
  • Everyone expected him to win the event with ease. (Any two)

(iii) What had made Owens angry enough to make mistakes?


  • Owens had been very confident of winning a gold medal in the running broad jump event.
  • He was shocked/ surprised to see /a tall German (Luz Long)/ hitting the pit at over 26 feet in the trial jumps/ Luz Long qualified easily/ He was told that Hitler had kept him (Luz Long) a secret and wanted him to win the broad jump.
  • Owens was a negro/ coloured man – he was angry at Hitler’s superior attitude – if Luz Long won it would add to the Nazis Aryan-Supremacy theory/ Owens was determined to prove Hitler wrong. (Any three)

(iv) Name Owens’ rival who approached him at this point.

Answer: Luz Long

What advice did this athlete give Owens?

  • Long advised Owens to draw a line a few inches in back of the board/ jump or take off from there.
  • That would ensure he would not foul/ yet jump far enough to qualify/ it wasn’t important to be first in the trials/ qualifying for the finals was more important. (Any three)

(v) How did the two athletes perform in the finals?


  • Luz Long – broke his own personal record
  • Owens – set Olympic record (of 26 feet 5 – 5/16 inches)/ won the Gold Medal

What does Jesse Owens consider his ‘Greatest Olympic Prize’?

The friendship that sprang up between himself and Luz Long.


It proved that it was possible for two people to rise above petty barriers like race and colour – to compete with each other and yet remain the best of friends (or any acceptable reason).

Question 12: Answer the following questions with reference to Ray Douglas Bradbury’s short story, ‘All Summer in a Day’:

(i) Name the planet on which this story is set.

Answer: Venus

Describe everyday life on this planet

  • Incessant rain / non-stop for 7 years/ thousands and thousands of days of rain.
  • Deafening/ drumming/ gushing of water/ sweet fall of showers / concussions of storms /caused tidal waves to wash over the islands.
  • A thousand forests grew rapidly/ only to be crushed by the rain / grow again and be crushed once more.
  • No sun for 7 years/ people used sun lamps/ lived in underground houses, tunnels (Any three)

(ii) Why was there so much excitement in the school room that morning?

Answer: The sun would shine that day for a brief 2 hours/ happened only once in 7 years/ they had waited for this day/ The sun was to appear that day and the children (all 9-year olds) were excited because they had no personal memory of seeing / experiencing the sun /they had only heard of it and were eager to experience it for themselves. (Any two)

What set Margot apart from the other children?

  • Margot was different/ she would not play (did not run when they tagged her) with the other children / she refused to sing along with them/ sang only if song was about sun or summer/.
  • Her biggest crime was that she had come to Venus only 5 years ago/ so she remembered experiencing the warmth of the sun / the other children picked on her because she was different / they had been on Venus all their lives. (Any two)

(iii) Describe how the planet was transformed when the sun came out and shone briefly over it.


  • A sudden silence descended on the planet / as if all loud thunderous sound had been cut
  • off in a film about a tornado/ avalanche/ hurricane etc./
  • It seemed a beautiful tropical picture had replaced the dreary landscape/
  • Everything was still – the silence was deafening/
  • The doors opened, and the children could smell the waiting world /
  • The sun came out – colour of flaming bronze – it was huge /
  • The sky was a blazing blue tile colour /
  • The jungle burned with the sunlight / the children rushed out into the springtime/
  • The children ran, turned their faces to the sun / took off their jackets / allowed the sun to burn their arms/
  • They lay on the rapidly growing plants / and delighted in the feel of the warm sun / they ran and played/ laughed and fell/ breathed the fresh air and listened to the silence
  • / didn’t stop running for over an hour.

Why was Margot not able to witness this phenomenon?

Because Margot had been locked into the closet by the other children.

What emotion do you suppose the other children experienced when Margot emerged at the end of the story?

Personal response (on the lines of) – they must have felt guilt /shame/ regret/ remorse/ awareness of wrongdoing/ realization/ solemn/ at having deprived Margot of this marvellous experience – something that she had been yearning for/ could not meet each other’s glance.

Question 13: Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:

One Sunday morning, when the animals assembled to receive their orders, Napoleon announced that he had decided upon a new policy. “From now onwards Animal Farm would engage in trade with the neighbouring farms: not, of course, for any commercial purpose, but simply in order to obtain certain materials which were urgently necessary.”

(i) Why did the animals need ‘certain materials’?

Answer: They needed certain materials to construct the windmill.

What arrangements had Napoleon made to engage in trade with the neighbouring farms?

  • Napoleon arranged to sell a stack of hay and part of the current year’s wheat crop.
  • Later on, if they needed more money it would be made up by the sale of eggs for which there was always a market in Willingdon.

(ii) Why did Napoleon’s announcement make the animals uneasy?


  • Animals were uneasy because Napoleon was violating some of their earliest resolutions.
  • Never to have any dealings with humans
  • Never to engage in trade – never to use money.

(iii) What did Squealer say to the animals to ease their doubts and fears?

Answer: Squealer assured the animals:

  • That the resolution against engaging in trade and using money had never been passed.
  • That they were a bunch of lies that had probably been spread by a snowball.
  • That the animals had probably dreamt of such resolutions. Asked if they had any written record of such resolutions – this convinced the animals that they were making a mistake.

(iv) Who was Mr. Whymper?

Answer: Mr. Whymper was a solicitor living in Willingdon

What had he agreed to do?

To act as intermediary between Animal Farm and the outside world.

Why had he entered into this agreement with Napoleon?

Shrewd man – realised that Animal Farm would need a broker and that the commissions from this would be worth having.

(v) There was a change in the attitude of the humans towards Animal Farm. Comment on this change. What were the signs and symptoms of this change?

Answer: Humans continued to hate Animal Farm and did not wish it well, but

  • They developed a certain respect for
  • The efficiency with which the animals managed their own affairs.
  • One symptom – they began to call ‘Animal Farm’ by its proper name – ceased to pretend that it was called Manor Farm.
  • The humans stopped supporting Farmer Jones – he had given up all hope of ever getting the farm back and had moved to another part of the town.

Question 14: 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?


  • Napoleon had accepted through Whymper, a contract for 400 eggs per week.
  • The price of these would pay for enough grain and meal
  • To keep the farm going till summer came and conditions were easier.

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


  • The hens were outraged / protested
  • They were just getting their clutches ready for the spring sitting
  • Said that taking away the eggs now would be like murder.

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


The hens were determined to thwart Napoleon’s wishes.

  • They would fly up to the rafters
  • Lay their eggs up there
  • The eggs would roll off and smash to bits on the floor.

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

Answer: Napoleon’s response was swift and merciless

  • Ordered that the hens’ rations were to be stopped
  • Decreed that any animal giving even a grain of corn to a hen would be punished by death.
  • The dogs saw to it that the orders were carried out.

(v) How long did the rebellion last?

Answer: Five days – then the hens capitulated and went back to their nesting boxes.

Describe the consequences of the rebellion.

Nine hens had died of starvation – their bodies were buried in the orchard and the animals were told they died of coccidiosis.

What do you learn of Napoleon’s character from the way in which he dealt with the rebellion?

Personal Response – Napoleon proved to be a harsh / ruthless / merciless ruler – did not allow dissent would crush all opposition – dictator – insist on having his own way. (Any two of the above or any other plausible response)

Question 15: With reference to George Orwell’s ‘The Animal Farm’, answer the following questions:

(i) Who wrote the poem ‘Comrade Napoleon’?

Answer: Minimus

How did Napoleon show his approval of the poem?


  • Napoleon had the poem inscribed on the wall of the big barn, the opposite end from the Seven Commandments.
  • It was surmounted by a portrait of Napoleon in profile + painted by Squealer

(ii) What precautions were taken to ensure Napoleon’s safety?


  • Four dogs guarded Napoleon’s bed at night + one dog at each corner
  • A young pig named Pinky was appointed to taste all Napoleon’s food before he ate it + lest he be poisoned.

(iii) What single commandment replaced the seven commandments on Animal Farm?

Answer: All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.

Mention some of the changes that the animals noticed in the behaviour of the pigs after the new commandment had been put up.

Some of the changes on the Farm: any six of the following:

  • Pigs who were supervising the work of the farm all carried whips in their trotters
  • Pigs had bought themselves a wireless set
  • They were arranging to install a telephone
  • They had taken out subscriptions to John Bull, Tit-Bits, and the Daily Mirror
  • Napoleon was seen strolling in the farmhouse with a pipe in his mouth
  • the pigs took Mr. Jones’ clothes out of the wardrobes and put them on
  • Napoleon was seen dressed in a black coat, rat catcher breeches, leather leggings and his favourite sow appeared in Mrs Jones’ Sunday best – a watered silk dress

Question 16: Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:

The breaking down of discipline likewise affected the dogs in their relations with one another. They quarrelled and bickered more than ever among themselves, till at times the camp was a howling bedlam: Dave and Sol-leks alone were unaltered, though they were made irritable by the unending squabbling.

(i) What led to the break-down of discipline in the dog team?

Answer: The insidious revolt led by Buck.

How did it affect the relationship among the dogs?

  • The dogs quarrelled and bickered often.
  • At times they were so noisy that the camp was like a bedlam.

(ii) What other acts of indiscipline did Buck’s encouragement lead to?


  • One night Pike robbed some fish from Spitz and gulped it down under Buck’s protection.
  • Another time Dub and Joe fought Spitz and forced him to forego the punishment they deserved.
  • Even good – natured Billee was less good natured and did not whine so placatingly
  • Spitz lost his aura – no longer feared and respected
  • Buck would snarl and bristle / swagger every time he was near Spitz. (Any three)

(iii) What started the dogs off on a chase after supper one night at the mouth of the river Tahkeena?


  • Dub unearthed a snow rabbit, blundered and missed.
  • In a second the whole team was in full cry.
  • Fifty dogs from a nearby Northwest Police camp joined the chase.

(iv) Who led the dogs in the chase?

Answer: Buck

What primitive urge did Buck experience during the chase?

  • Running down the wild thing (rabbit) – the living meat
  • The desire to kill with his own teeth and wash his muzzle to the eyes in blood.

(v) How did Spitz use the chase to try and outwit Buck?


  • Spitz left the pack and cut across a narrow neck of land where the creek made a long bend around.
  • Spitz hurled himself at Buck at the very moment that Buck make his kill (rabbit).
  • Buck was taken by surprise – absorbed in the hunt he had not anticipated Spitz attack

What does this reveal of Spitz’s nature?

Personal Response – Spitz proved to be cold and calculating / shrewd even in the thick of a chase / Spitz was fighting for his survival as an alpha male. (Any other plausible answer)

Question 17: Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:

With the dogs falling, Mercedes weeping and riding, Hal swearing innocuously, and Charles’s eyes wistfully watering, they staggered into John Thornton’s camp at the mouth of White River. When they halted, the dogs dropped down as though they had all been struck dead.

(i) Who were Mercedes, Hal and Charles? How were they related to each other?


  • New owners of Buck and his fellow huskies
  • Mercedes was Charles’ wife
  • And Hal’s sister

(ii) What was John Thornton doing when they arrived at his camp?

Answer: Thornton was whittling an axe handle from a stick of birch.

Describe his responses to Hal’s questions.

He answered in monosyllables – gave terse advice

Give one reason for his manner.

Because he knew the ‘breed’ he knew Hal was the kind of person who would disregard advice.

(iii) What did Thornton warn them against?

Answer: To take no chances on the ice as it was very thin

What reason did he give for his warning?

The ice was very thin and the bottom was likely to drop out of it.

How did Hal respond to Thornton’s advice?

Hal disregarded the advice – said others had warned him not to travel on the ice but he had made it so far – declared that they would travel to Dawson.

(iv) How did Hal manage to get his dogs back on their feet?

Answer: By whipping them first and then by using the club.

Why did Buck not respond to Hal’s blows?

  • Buck had decided not to respond – he barely felt the blows.
  • Buck had a sense of impending doom which persisted – sensed that disaster was at hand – on the ice where his master was trying to drive him.

(v) Describe how Thornton saved Buck’s life.


  • Thornton watches in rage as Hal whipped and clubbed the dogs.
  • Finally intervened – cut Buck loose from the sled and threatened to kill Hal if he struck Buck again.
  • Hal realised that he could not argue with Thornton and that Buck was nearly dead – decided to carry on without Buck
  • Shortly after, the sled pulled out Buck and Thornton hear Mercedes scream – watched as a whole section of ice gave way and both dogs and humans disappeared. Only a big hole was left – the bottom had dropped out of the trail.
  • Only Buck had survived – thanks to Thornton.

Question 18: Answer the following questions with reference to Jack London’s, ‘The Call of the Wild’.

(i) How was Thornton talked into a wager that involved Buck, during a conversation in the Eldorado Saloon?


  • Men were boasting in the Saloon about their favourite dogs – one stated that his dog could draw a sled loaded with five hundred pounds; a second bragged six hundred and a third seven hundred.
  • Buck had a reputation for strength and leadership so these men were targeting Buck and baiting Thornton.
  • Thornton listened to these men brag about their dogs and declared that Buck could start a thousand pounds.
  • One of the men (Mathewson) ask if Buck could break out such a heavy sled and walk off with it for a hundred yards and Thornton replied that he could. Mathewson bet Thornton a thousand dollars that Buck could not do it.

(ii) How did Thornton feel after he had committed Buck to the wager?


  • Thornton could feel a flush of warm blood creeping up his face.
  • He realised he had been tricked into the wager.
  • He was appalled by the enormity of the burden his boast had placed on Buck.
  • He had great faith in Buck’s strength but he had never had to face the possibility of having to test it – Thornton was anxious – wondered if Buck could indeed live up to his boast.

(iii) Give a brief description of how Buck managed to win the wager for Thornton.


  • All the men gathered on the street. Mathewson’s sled loaded with a thousand pounds of flour was standing in the street. Its runners had frozen fast to the hard packed snow.
  • The team of ten dogs was unhitched and Buck with his own harness was put into the sled – Buck could sense the excitement in the air.
  • Thornton was asked to stand far away from Buck and give the command. He knelt beside Buck and whispered something in the dog’s ear. Buck gently nipped Thornton’s hand to show he understood.
  • Thornton gave the command – Buck swung first to the right, then to the left – to break out the sled.
  • Thornton called out ‘Mush’ – Buck threw his body forwarded – straining at every muscle and sinew in his body – chest low to the ground – head down – claws cutting grooves into the ice with his effort.
  • The sled slowly swayed – Buck’s foot slipped – then the sled began to move forward in the series of jerks.
  • Slowly the sled gained momentum and began to move along steadily – Thornton ran behind encouraging Buck with his words.
  • The crowd began to cheer as Buck approached the end of the hundred yards – and burst into a loud roar when he crossed the line.
  • Buck had won the wager for Thornton – a wager that earned him sixteen hundred dollars.

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