The Snake and the Mirror Solutions for Class 9 English Chapter 5 with Answers

We have Provided the CBSE Solutions chapter-wise for Class 9 English Beehive Chapter 5 The Snake and the Mirror with Answers by expert subject teacher for latest syllabus and examination. Students also can take a free CBSE Solutions of The Snake and the Mirror. Each question has right answer Solved by Expert Teacher.

CBSE Solutions Class 9 English Beehive Prose


Thinking About the Text

I. Discuss in pairs and answer each question below in a short paragraph

Q1. “ The sound was a familiar one.” What sound did the doctor hear? What did he think it was? How many times did he hear it? (Find the places in the text.) When and why did the sounds stop?

Answer: The doctor lived in a room which was full of rats. He heard the sounds of the rats. There was a regular traffic of rats to and fro the beam. He heard the sound thrice. The sound stopped suddenly as rats had seen a snake.

Q2. What two “important” and “earth¬shaking” decisions did the doctor take while he was looking into the mirror?

Answer: The two important and earth-shaking decisions that the doctor took while he was looking into the mirror are:
i. He would shave daily and grow a thin moustache to look more handsome.
ii. He would always keep that attractive smile on his face.


Q3. “I looked into the mirror and smiled,” says the doctor. A little later he says, “I forgot my danger and smiled feebly at myself.” What is the doctor’s opinion about himself when (i) he first smiles, and (ii) he smiles again? In what way do his thoughts change in between, and why?

Answer: (i) When the doctor first smiles, he has an inflated opinion of himself, admiring his looks and profession.
(ii) In the second instance, the doctor smiles at his foolishness and helplessness.
His thoughts change after his encounter with the snake—from being a proud doctor he moves on to accept his stupidity.

II. This story about a frightening incident is narrated in a humorous way. What makes it humorous? (Think of the contrasts it presents between dreams and reality. Some of them are listed below).


Q1. (i) The kind of person the doctor is (money, possessions)

Answer: The doctor is a poor person. He has hardly any money. he lives in an unelectrified house. It is small rented room with plenty of rats living in it. He has just started his medical practice. So he is not a man of possessions or money.

(ii) The kind of person he wants to be (appearance, ambition)

Answer: The Person wants to be rich. he also would like to have good appearance. That’s why he decides to grow a thin moustache.

Q2. (i) The person he wants to marry

Answer: The doctor wants to marry a woman doctor. He wants that she should have a good medical practice and a lot of money. She should be fat as not to run after him and catch him.

(ii) The person he actually marries

Answer: He marries a thin reedy woman. She has the gift of a sprinter.

Q3. (i) His thoughts when he looks into the mirror

Answer: He thinks that he should look smart. So he decides to shave daily and retain his smile. He is happy and contented when he looks into the mirror.

(ii) His thoughts when the snake is coiled around his arm

Answer: When the snake coiled around his left arm above the elbow, he kept sitting there holding his breath. He became motionless. He was afraid of the snake.

Thinking about Language


(I) Here are some sentences from the text. Say which of them tell you, that the author:

(a) was afraid of the snake,
(b) was proud of his appearance,
(c) had a sense of humour,
(d) was no longer afraid of the snake.

  1. I was turned to stone.
  2. I was no mere image cut in granite.
  3. The arm was beginning to be drained of strength.
  4. I tried in my imagination to write in bright letters outside my little heart the words, ‘O God’.
  5. I didn’t tremble. I didn’t cry out.
  6. I looked into the mirror and smiled. It was an attractive smile.
  7. I was suddenly a man of flesh and blood.
  8. I was after all a bachelor, and a doctor too on top of it!
  9. The fellow had such a sense of cleanliness…! The rascal could have taken it and used it after washing it with soap and water.
  10. Was it trying to make an important decision about growing a moustache or using eye shadow and mascara or wearing a vermilion spot on its forehead

Answer: The sentences (1), (3), (4), (5) tell that the author

(a) was afraid of the snake.
The sentences (6) and (8) tell that he

(b) was proud of his appearance.
The sentences (9) and (10) tell that

(c) he had a sense of humour.
The sentences (2) and (7) tell that (d) he was no longer afraid of the snake.


(II). Expressions used to show fear

Can you find the expressions in the story that tell you that the author was frightened? Read the story and complete the following sentences.

(i) I was turned ……………….
(ii) I sat there holding ……………….
(iii) In the light of the lamp I sat there like ……………….

Answer:

(i) stone.
(ii) my breath.
(iii) a stone image in the flesh.


(III). In the sentences given below some words and expressions are italicised. They variously mean that one

  • is very frightened.
  • is too scared to move.
  • is frightened by something that happens suddenly.
  • makes another feel frightened.

Match the meanings with the words/ expressions in italics, and write the appropriate meaning next to the sentence. The first one has been done for you.

  1. I knew a man was following me, I was scared out of my wits, (very frightened)
  2. I got a fright when I realised how close I was to the cliff edge.
  3. He nearly jumped out of his skin when he saw the bull coming towards him.
  4. You really gave me a fright when you crept up behind me like that.
  5. Wait until I tell his story – it will make your hair stand on end.
  6. Paralysed with fear, the boy faced his abductors.
  7. The boy hid behind the door, not moving a muscle.

Answer: 1. I knew a man was following me, I was scared out of my wits, (very frightened)

  1. I got a fright when I realised how close I was to the cliff edge, (frightened by something that happens suddenly)
  2. He nearly jumped out of his skin when he saw the bull coming towards him. (pry frightened)
  3. You really gave me a fright when you crept up behind me like that, (frightened by something that happens suddenly)
  4. Wait until I tell his story – it will make your hair stand on end. (makes another feel frightened
  5. Paralysed with fear, the boy faced his abductors, (too scared to move)
  6. The boy hid behind the door, not moving a muscle, (too scared to move)

(IV) Reported questions
Study these sentences:

• His friend asked, “Did you see the snake the next day, doctor?”
His friend asked the doctor whether/if he had seen the snake the next day.
• The little girl wondered, “Will I be home before the TV show begins?”
The little girl wondered if/whether she would be home before the TV show began.
• Someone asked, “Why has the thief left the vest behind?”
Someone asked why the thief had left the vest behind

The words if/whether are used to report questions which begin with: do, will, can, have, are etc. These questions can be answered ‘yes’ or ‘no’.
Questions beginning with why/when/where/how/which/what are reported using these same words.
The reporting verbs we use in questions with if/whether/why/when etc.
are: ask, inquire and wonder.

  1. Meena asked her friend, “Do you think your teacher will come today?”
  2. David asked his colleague, “Where will you go this summer?”
  3. He asked the little boy, “Why are you studying English?”
  4. She asked me, “When are we going to leave?”
  5. Pran asked me, “Have you finished reading the newspaper?”
  6. Seema asked her, “How long have you lived here?”
  7. Sheila asked the children “Are you ready to do the work?

Answer: 1.Meena asked her friend if he/she thought his/her teacher would come that day.
2.David asked his colleague where he would go that summer.
3.He asked the little boy why he was studying English.
4.She asked me when we were going to leave.
5.Pran asked me if I had finished reading the newspaper.
6.Seema asked her how long she had lived there.
7.Sheila asked the children if they were ready to do the work.


Writing

Q1. Try to rewrite the story without its humour, merely as a frightening incident. What details or parts of the story would you leave out?

Answer: Do yourself.

Q2. Read the description given alongside this sketch from a photograph in a newspaper (Times of India, 4 September 1999). Make up a story about what the monkey is thinking, or why it is looking into a mirror. Write a paragraph about it.

Answer: It was a sunny day. A monkey was walking in the garden. Fortunately he came to the comer of the garden and found a piece of miiTor. The monkey started looking in the mirror. First of all he looked his face in the mirror and was very happy. He thought that God has given him a human face. Again he looked his hands and fingers in the mirror. He was very proud because he realised that his hands were long and he could hold things easily. At last he decided to look his body in the mirror. This time he was not so much happy because it was full of hair. The monkey was sad and his hands started trembling. Unfortunately, the mirror fell down from his hand and broke into several pieces. When he tried to look his face in the pieces of mirror, he saw his cut faces. This time he became angry and left the place.


Extra Questions of The Snake and the Mirror

Q1. What made the doctor utter “Death lurked four inches away” ?

Answer: The doctor was under the grip of the snake, and sat motionless as a statue, his body was inactive but mind was completely active. He knew very well that the snake would bite him at the slightest movement. This is what made his utter these words.

Q2. What did the doctor do on seeing the snake ?

Answer: The doctor saw the snake’s reflection in the mirror. He, then, went to have a closer look. He got up from the chair and ran away from the house.

Q3. How did the snake change the writer’s opinion about himself ?

Answer: The writer was proud of being a doctor. Coming face-to-face with the snake made him humble. He
thought he was only a poor and stupid doctor who should not be proud of his profession.

Q4. Why did the doctor run away to his friend’s house ?

Answer: From writer’s arm the snake slithered into his lap, crept onto the table and then moved towards the mirror. The writer revived, got up from the chair and leapt into the yard and ran to his friend’s house to save his life.

Q5. Why did the author of “The Snake and the Mirror” fantasize a fat woman as his wife ?

Answer: The author of “The Snake and the Mirror’ fantasizes a fat woman as his wife since she would never be able to catch the doctor on his mistakes. She would not be able to run after him and he would be saved of all kinds of punishments. Thus, the author fantasizes a fat woman as his wife.


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