Monday , March 8 2021
9th Class CBSE English Literature Reader

Keeping it from Harold: 9th Class CBSE English Ch 04

Keeping it from Harold: NCERT 9th Class CBSE English Course Communicative: Literature Reader Interact in English Chapter 04

Question – Keeping it from Harold: Based on your reading of the story, answer the following questions by choosing the correct option:

(a) Mrs. Bramble was a proud woman because

  1. she was the wife of a famous boxer.
  2. she had motivated her husband.
  3. she was a good housewife.
  4. she was the mother of a child prodigy.

Answer:

  • (4.) she was the mother of a child prodigy.

(b) “The very naming of Harold had caused a sacrifice on his part.” The writer’s tone here is

  1. admiring
  2. assertive
  3. satirical
  4. gentle

Answer:

  • (2.) assertive

(c) Harold had defied the laws of heredity by

  1. becoming a sportsperson
  2. being good at academics
  3. being well-built and muscular
  4. respecting his parents

Answer:

  • (2.) being good at academics

(d) Harold felt that he was deprived of the respect that his classmates would give him as

  1. they did not know his father was the famous boxer, ‘Young Porky’.
  2. his hero, Jimmy Murphy had not won the wrestling match.
  3. he had not got Phil Scott’s autograph.
  4. Sid Simpson had lost the Lonsdale belt

Answer:

  • (1.) they did not know his father was the famous boxer, ‘Young Porky’.

Question – Keeping it from Harold: Answer the following questions:

  1. What was strange about the manner in which Mrs. Bramble addressed her son? What did he feel about it?
  2. Why was it necessary to keep Harold’s father’s profession a secret from him?
  3. When Mr. Bramble came to know that he was to become a father what were some of the names he decided upon? Why?
  4. Describe Mr. Bramble as he has been described in the story.
  5. Why was Mrs. Bramble upset when she came to hear that Bill had decided not to fight?
  6. Who was Jerry Fisher? What did he say to try and convince Bill to change his mind?
  7. How did Harold come to know that his father was a boxer?
  8. Why was Harold upset that his father had not told him about his true identity? Give two reasons.
  9. Do you agree with Harold’s parents decision of hiding from him the fact that his father was a boxer? Why / Why not?

Answer:

  1. Harold didn’t like the manner in which Mrs. Bramble addressed her son. Nor did he relish the habit of his mother of referring to herself in the third person. She spoke as if she were addressing a baby. She would never use ‘I’ but said, ‘Yes, mother will hear you, precious’. Now Harold was a young man of ten. He had already won the spelling and dictation prize to his credit. He felt bad about it.
  2. Harold was very different from ordinary children. Harold’s parents wanted to keep Mr. Bramble’s profession a well guarded secret from him. Harold was made to believe the fiction that his father was a commercial traveller. They didn’t want Harold to die of ‘disgrace’ by knowing the truth that his father was a man of ‘wrath’ and a bloody boxer.
  3. Mr. Bramble was a famous boxer. When he came to know that he was to become a father he had many names in his mind for his child. All of them were related to the world of boxing. He wanted his child to be named John, if a boy, after Mr. John L. Sullivan or if a girl, Marie, after Miss Marie Lloyd. But he had to sacrifice his choice when his wife opposed him.
  4. Mr. Bramble was an ‘excellent man’ and nobody ‘could help liking him’. He was a professional boxer better known as ‘Young Porky’. There was not a boxer in London whom he could not overcome in a twenty- round contest. He was famous for his left hook. But he was a very considerate, self- sacrificing and diffident character. He could sacrifice his name, fame and money as a boxer not to ‘disgrace’ Harold.
  5. Mrs. Bramble didn’t like professional boxing. Nor did she want Harold to know that his father was ‘Young Porky’. But she was upset when she came to hear that Bill had decided not to fight. Big money was involved in the fighting. The winner was to get 500 pounds and even the loser was to get 120 pounds. Boxing had earned good money for the family and made possible to give Harold a good education. That money could give Harold a better start in life than they had ever had.
  6. Mr. Jerry Fisher was a boxing coach or trainer at the White Hart. He was a hard trainer. Bill’s fight with Jimmy Murphy was going to be a national affair. He was proud of Bill and was sure of his victory. He was shocked to know that Bill had given up the idea of fighting. He tried to convince Bill to change his mind. He reminded him of the handsome money that he would get by participating in the fight.
  7. Jerry Fisher disliked Bill now and he wanted to take revenge. The best way of taking revenge was to disclose Bill’s real identity to his son Harold. He disclosed that Bill was not a commercial traveller but a professional boxer, popularly known as ‘Young Porky’.
  8. When Harold came to know that his father was actually ‘Young Porky’, he was upset. He realised that he had been deprived of the honour of being the son of ‘Young Porky’. His schoolmates wouldn’t dare to call him ‘goggles’ if they knew that ‘Young Porky’ was his father. He had already betted two shillings that Jimmy Murphy would not last ten rounds against ‘Young Porky.’
  9. Harold’s parents’ decision of hiding from him the fact that his father was a boxer was not correct. They thought that Harold would die of disgrace if he came to know that his father was a man of wrath and called ‘Young Porky’. The truth was the other way around. Harold was deeply interested in boxing. He had betted two shillings that Jimmy Murphy would not last ten rounds against ‘Young Porky’. It was a dramatic irony that his parents hid from him the fact of which he could swank like anything.

Question: The sequence of events has been jumbled up. Rearrange them and complete the given flowchart.

  1. Major Percy and Bill come to the house.
  2. Harold comes to know that his father is a boxer.
  3. Bill tells his wife that he is doing it for Harold.
  4. Jerry Fisher tries to convince Bill to reconsider.
  5. Mrs. Bramble is amazed to think that she has brought such a prodigy as Harold into the world.
  6. Harold wants to know what will happen to the money he had bet on Murphy losing.
  7. Mrs. Bramble is informed that Bill had decided not to fight.
  8. Mrs. Bramble resumes work of darning the sock.
  9. Harold is alone with his mother in their home.

Keeping it from Harold: 9th Class CBSE English Ch 04
Answer:

  1. Harold is alone with his mother in their home.
  2. Mrs. Bramble is amazed to think that she has brought such a prodigy as Harold into the world.
  3. Mrs. Bramble resumes work of darning the sock.
  4. Major Percy and Bill come to the house.
  5. Mrs. Bramble is informed that Bill had decided not to fight.
  6. Bill tells his wife that he is doing it for Harold.
  7. Jerry Fisher tries to convince Bill to reconsider.
  8. Harold comes to know that his father is a boxer.
  9. Harold wants to know what will happen to the money he had bet on Murphy losing.

Question: Choose extracts from the story that illustrate the characters of these people in it.

Person Extracts from the story What this tells us about their characters
Mrs Bramble (Para 12) “Bill we must keep it from Harold” She was not honest and open with her son; concerned mother
Mr Bramble (Para 33)
Percy (Para 109)
Jerry Fisher (Para 110

Answer:

Person Extracts from the story What this tells us about their characters
Mrs Bramble (Para 12) “Bill we must keep it from Harold” She was not honest and open with her son; concerned mother
Mr Bramble (Para 33) “The scales have fallen from his eyes”. Mr. Bramble was confused, diffident and easily influenced.
Percy (Para 109) “I’d be ashamed to be so spiteful.” Concerned about Harold and Bill; talkative
Jerry Fisher (Para 110) “Tommy”, said Mr Fisher, ignoring them all, “you think your pa’s a commercial. He ain’t. He’s a fighting man.” Revengeful; adamant

Listening Task

Question: The teacher will ask the students to answer these questions based on an interview given by the legendary WWE wrestler, Kane to Chris Carle of IGN. The students are to listen to the interview.

  1. What were the video games that Kane liked playing earlier and which games later?
    _________________
  2. Who was Kane’s favourite wrestler when he was first getting into wrestling and who were some of the other wrestlers who influenced him into taking up wrestling?
    _________________________
  3. How according to Kane had the WWE changed in the past ten years?
    ________________________
  4. Does Kane prefer performing with the mask or without the mask?
    ________________________
  5. Why does Kane wrestle these days even though he has accomplished almost everything?
    ________________________
  6. What is your impression of Kane as a person after you have heard this interview?
    ________________________

Answer: Self attempt.

Writing Task

Question: Many people are of the opinion that violent, physical sports such as boxing, kick boxing and wrestling, to name a few should be banned while others think otherwise.

Express your opinion on the topic by either writing in favour of banning these sports or against banning them. While writing, you should also include the rebuttal to your questions. Try not to go beyond 200 words.

Answer:

BANNING VIOLENT PHYSICAL SPORTS

Many people think that violent physical sports such as boxing, kick boxing, wrestling, bull-fighting, to name a few, should be banned. And they think rightly so. What’s the main aim of sports and games? Pleasure and entertainment. They provide us thrill or ‘excitement’. They lift our spirits. We feel more animated and alive. And the entertainment that sports and games provide us is the healthy and wholesome entertainment. On the other hand, violent physical sports such as boxing, kick boxing and bullfighting provide us a vulgar pleasure. It is violent and sadistic in nature. When we watch hockey, badminton or cricket we enjoy them. We appreciate Gavaskar for defence, Vivian Richards for attack and Sachin Tendulkar for style. Similarly, we adore Maradona or Pele not for their foul play or hitting the opponents but for their scoring abilities. Similarly, we admire Federer for his craftsmanship and Nadal for his power play in lawn-tennis. All these sports lift us physically, mentally as well as spiritually.

Watch a ten or fifteen-round boxing match. What do you like the most in a boxing match? You like the punches, hooks and the maximum damage that a boxer can do to his opponent. At every punch or hook your desire to see assault and your blood is aroused. Before the bout ends you find both the players wounded, bleeding and their faces cut at more than half a dozen places. Some players even lose their lives during boxing bouts. What is bullfighting? It shows sheer lack of decency, lack of good taste that one craves for such violent sports. Such bloody and violent sports should be banned.

Question: A large part of the story is composed of conversation between the characters.

Can you convert it into a play and in groups, present your version of the play before the class? Before that, decide onthe members of cast, minimum props required and also the costumes.

Answer:

A Classroom Activity.

Reference To Context

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

Question: It was a constant source of amazement to Mrs. Bramble that she should have brought such a prodigy as Harold into the world. Harold was so different from ordinary children, so devoted to his books, such a model of behaviour, so altogether admirable. (Page 29)

  1. Who is a prodigy child?
  2. Who was so proud of such a prodigy?
  3. Find a word in the extract similar in meaning to ‘commendable’.

Answer:

  1. A child with exceptional talents is called a prodigy child.
  2. Mrs. Bramble, Harold’s mother.
  3. Admirable.

Question: The only drawback was that his very ‘perfection’ had made necessary a series of evasions and even deliberate falsehoods on the part of herself and her husband, highly distasteful to both. They were lovers of truth, but they had realised that there are times when truth must be sacrificed. At any cost, the facts concerning Mr. Bramble’s profession must be kept from Harold. (Page 29)

  1. What was the only drawback in Harold?
  2. Who indulged in evasions and deliberate falsehoods?
  3. What does the clause ‘Mr. Bramble’s profession must be kept from Harold’ mean?

Answer:

  1. His very ‘perfection’ was his only drawback.
  2. Harold’s parents indulged in evasions and deliberate falsehoods.
  3. It means that his father was a professional boxer. This fact must be concealed from Harold.

Question: Certainly he was very persuasive. Mr. Bramble had fallen in with the suggestion without demur. In private life he was the mildest and most obliging of men, and always yielded to everybody. The very naming of Harold had caused as sacrifice on his part. (Page 30)

  1. ‘He’ here stands for whom?
  2. What does the phrase ‘without demur’ mean here?
  3. Who had to sacrifice in the naming of Harold?

Answer:

  1. Major Percy Stokes.
  2. Without reluctance or objection.
  3. Mr. Bramble had to sacrifice in the naming of Harold.

Question: So, Harold grew in stature and intelligence, without a suspicion of the real identity of the square-jawed man with the irregularly-shaped nose who came and went mysteriously in their semi-detached, red-brick home. He was a self-centred child, and, accepting the commercial traveller fiction, dismissed the subject from his mind and busied himself with things of more moment. (Page 31)

  1. Who kept the identity of the square-jawed from Harold?
  2. Who was ‘the square-jawed man’?
  3. What was Harold told about his father?

Answer:

  1. Harold’s parents and Major Percy Stokes kept the identity of the square-jawed from Harold.
  2. Mr. Bramble was ‘the square jawed man’.
  3. He was told that his father was a commercial traveller.

Question: ‘Percy, if you don’t keep quiet, I’ll forget I’m your sister and let you have one. What do you mean, Bill, you’ve come home? Isn’t there going to be the fight next week, after all?’ {Page 33)

  1. Who is snubbing Percy?
  2. Why has Bill dropped the idea of fighting?
  3. Name the chapter in which these lines occur.

Answer:

  1. Mrs. Bramble is snubbing Percy.
  2. He is afraid of his publicity.
  3. ‘Keeping It From Harold.’

Question: “How about the money?” Repeated Mrs. Bramble. “Goodness knows I’ve never liked your profession, Bill, but there is this to be said for it, that it’s earned you good money and made it possible for us to give Harold as good an education as any duke ever had, I’m sure.” (Page 33)

  1. What is Bill’s profession?
  2. What gave good money to the Brambles?
  3. Write the verb form of ‘education’.

Answer:

  1. Professional boxing is Bill’s profession.
  2. Bill’s professional boxing gave good money to the Brambles.
  3. Educate.

Question: ‘Tommy,’ said Mr. Fisher, ignoring them all, ‘you think your Pa’s a commercial. He ain’t. He’s a fighting-man, doing his eight-stone-four ringside, and known to all the heads as ‘Young Porky.” (Page 37)

  1. Who was Mr. Fisher?
  2. Whom did Mr. Fisher address?
  3. What does ‘ain’t’ stand for here? What else does it stand for?

Answer:

  1. Mr. Fisher was a boxing coach or trainer.
  2. Mr. Fisher addressed Harold.
  3. Here ‘ain’t’ stands for ‘is not’. It also stands for ‘am not’ and ‘are not’.

Question: How long do you suppose they’d go on calling me, ‘Goggles’ if they knew that you were my father? They’d chuck it tomorrow, and look up to me like anything, I do call ilrotten. (Page 38)

  1. Who does the word ‘they’ here refer to?
  2. Who is the speaker here?
  3. What is ‘rotten’ in the eyes of the speaker?

Answer:

  1. Harold’s schoolmates.
  2. Harold is the speaker.
  3. Bill’s idea of withdrawing from the contest is ‘rotten’ in the eyes of the speaker.

Question: Pa, can’t you give me a picture of yourself boxing? I could swank like anything. And you don’t know how sick a chap gets of having chaps call him, ‘Goggles.’ (Page 38)

  1. The speaker wants to swank. Why?
  2. Why does the speaker feel sick?
  3. Find a word in the extract similar in meaning to ‘man’.

Answer:

  1. Harold wants to swank as he is the son of a famous boxer ‘Young Porky’.
  2. Harold feels sick because he is called ‘Goggles’ by his classmates.
  3. Chap.

Question: ‘Bill,’ said Mr. Fisher, ‘you and me had better be getting back to the White Hart.’ Bill rose and followed him without a word. (Page 38)

  1. What is the White Hart?
  2. Why did Bill follow Mr. Fisher?
  3. Find a word in the extract which means ‘went behind’.

Answer:

  1. The place where Bill gets training in boxing is known as the White Hart.
  2. He followed Mr. Fisher to join the contest.
  3. Followed.

ABOUT THE STORY – Keeping it from Harold

‘Keeping It from Harold’ conveys the idea that it is wrong to undervalue anything which involves physical skills such as boxing, wrestling, etc. while overestimating intellectual activities. Both Mr Bramble and Mrs Bramble are proud of a child prodigy, Mr Bramble is a famous boxer known as ‘Young Porky’. He and his wife come to believe that they should hide from their son the fact of his father being a boxer. They feel that Harold will hate his father. They are encouraged in this wrong belief by the senior curate of the parish and Major Percy Stokes (Mrs Bramble’s brother). Mr Bramble was proud of his being a boxer before the birth of his son. The trainer JLerry Fisher, in anger at his refusal to fight, discloses the secret to Harold. Harold surprises them when he tells them that he is not ashamed of but angry with his father who has refused to fight and defeat his opponent Murphy. Harold feels satisfied when his father gets ready to go with his trainer to prepare himself for the great fight.

CHARACTERS

  1. Mr Bramble
    Mr Bramble is a short, sturdy fellow. He is a red-headed man with a broken nose such as boxers generally have. He is thirty-one. He has a long record for respectability and sobriety. He is a famous boxer known as ‘Young Porky’. He is proud of the intellectual abilities of his son Harold. He comes to wrongly believe that Harold will hate him if he comes to know that he is a boxer. Though physically strong, he seems to be mentally weak.
  2. Mrs Bramble
    Like all mothers, Mrs Bramble is excessively fond of her son, Harold. She is very loving and caring. She addresses her son as ‘dearie’ and refers to herself in the third person. She is also convinced that Harold should not know that his father is a boxer. She is a good housewife. She manages the house well. She feels upset when she learns that her husband has refused to fight. She feels that if he does not fight they will have no money essential for their son’s education and bright future.
  3. Harold
    Harold is a model child, different from ordinary children. He is fully devoted to his books. He is a model of good behaviour. Everybody admires him. He has already won prizes in academics. His parents are in awe of him. His parents are unaware of the fact that he is interested in boxing and knows a lot about the game and boxers. He surprises his parents by expressing his anger that he has not been told that his father is a famous boxer. He proves them wrong. He feels proud of his father and his profession. He wants his father to fight and defeat his opponent, Murphy.

REFERENCE TO CONTEXT QUESTIONS (SOLVED)

Read the given extracts and answer the questions that follow:

Question: ‘Goodness know I’ve never liked your profession, Bill, but there is this to be said for it, that it’s earned you good money and made it possible for us to give Harold as good an education as any duke ever had, I’m sure.

  1. What profession is being talked about?
  2. Who is the speaker?
  3. What has prompted the speaker to say this? (CBSE2014)

Answer:

  1. The profession that is being talked about is boxing.
  2. Mrs Bramble is the speaker.
  3. Mr Bramble’s refusal to fight his opponent has prompted the speaker to say this.

Question: Before him on the tablecloth lay an open book. His powerful brain was plainly busy.

  1. Who is he referred to here?
  2. What kind of person he is?
  3. Give the meaning of’plainly. (CBSE 2014)

Answer:

  1. He is Harold, the Bramble’s son.
  2. He is a studious lad, an intellectual-type.
  3. ‘clearly’.

Question: Mrs Bramble took the book.
‘Yes, mother will hear you, precious.’

  1. What is unusual in Mrs Bramble’s speech?
  2. What do you think of the speaker?
  3. Give the meaning of’precious’.

Answer:

  1. Her referring to herself in the third person is unusual.
  2. The speaker, Mrs Bramble, is a very loving and caring mother.
  3. ‘dear’.

Question: A slight frown marred the smoothness of Harold Bramble’s brow.

  1. What annoyed Harold?
  2. What did he want?
  3. Give the meaning of ‘marred’.

Answer:

  1. His mother addressed Harold as if he were a baby. This annoyed him.
  2. He wanted to be treated as a grown-up boy.
  3. ‘spoiled’.

Question: ‘You do study so hard, dearie, you’ll give yourself a headache. Why don’t you take a nice walk by the river for half an hour, and come back nice and fresh?’

  1. Who is the speaker?
  2. What tells you that she is a caring mother?
  3. What do you mean by ‘hard’?

Answer:

  1. Mrs Bramble is the speaker.
  2. She is a caring mother as she wants her son to remain active physically and mentally.
  3. ‘too much’.

Question: Certainly he was very persuasive. Mr Bramble had fallen in with the suggestion without demur. In private life, he was the mildest and most obliging of men, and always yielded to everybody. The very naming of Harold had caused a sacrifice on his part.

  1. What was the suggestion?
  2. How was Mr Bramble in life?
  3. What does ‘demur’ mean?

Answer:

  1. The suggestion was that Harold should not be told what his father was.
  2. He was quite mild and obliging.
  3. Saying something that one does not agree with.

Question: ‘Percy, if you don’t keep quiet, I’ll forget I’m your sister and let you have one. What do you mean, Bill, you’ve come home? Isn’t there going to be the fight next week, after all?’
‘The fight’s over,’ said the unsuppressed Major, joyfully, ‘and Bill’s won, with – me seconding him.’

  1. Why was Mrs Bramble angry?
  2. What had Bill told her?
  3. Give the meaning of ‘unsuppressed’.

Answer:

  1. Mrs Bramble was angry at her husband’s leaving his training to fight as in that case they would not get any money essential for their son’s education.
  2. Bill had told her that Mr Bramble had come back with the idea not to fight,
  3. ‘not preventing oneself to express feelings’.

Question: ‘I hope you are keeping it from Harold. It is the least you can do’.

  1. Who is the speaker here?
  2. What suggestion does he make to Mrs Bramble?
  3. Give the meaning of ‘keeping’ in the present context.

Answer:

  1. Mrs Bramble’s brother, Major Percy Stokes, is the speaker here.
  2. His suggestion is that Harold should not be told the fact of his father being a boxer.
  3. ‘hiding’.

Question: ‘It’s hard,’ he said at length, in a choked voice.
‘I just wanted to break his neck for him, but I suppose it’s not to be. I know it’s him that’s at the bottom of it. And here I find them together, so I know it’s him. Well, if you say so, Mrs B., I suppose I mustn’t put a hand on him’.

  1. What was so ‘hard’ for Jerry Fisher?
  2. Whose neck did he want to break?
  3. What does ‘choked’ mean?

Answer:

  1. For Jerry Fisher it was hard that Bill (Mr Bramble) had deserted him at the eleventh hour.
  2. He wanted to break Percy’s neck to persuade Bill not to fight.
  3. ‘suffocated’.

Question: The only drawback was that his very ‘perfection’ had made necessary a series of evasions and even deliberate falsehoods on the part of herself and her husband, highly distasteful to both.

  1. Whose ‘perfection’ does the extract point out?
  2. How was ‘he’ perfect?
  3. What does ‘evasion’ mean?

Answer:

  1. It points out the perfection of Harold, the Bramble’s son.
  2. He was perfect in studies and behaviour. Everyone admired him as an unusual child.
  3. ‘the act of avoiding.’

Question: The spectacled child considered the point for a moment gravely.

  1. Who is the spectacled child mentioned in this line?
  2. Which point did the child consider?
  3. Give the meaning of’gravely’.

Answer:

  1. The spectacled child is Harold, the son of the Brambles.
  2. The child considered his mother’s suggestion that he should go out for a walk by the river.
  3. ‘seriously’.

Question: He had promised that it should be the last. He was getting on.

  1. What ‘last’ thing had he promised to do?
  2. What did he intend to take up after this?
  3. What is the meaning of ‘getting on’?

Answer:

  1. He had promised to have only one boxing bout before retiring from his profession, that is, boxing.
  2. He intended to become an instructor at some school or college.
  3. ‘agreeing’.

Question: ‘The fight’s over’, said the unsuppressed Major, joyfully, ‘Bell’s won, with me seconding him.’

  1. Why was the Major happy and excited?
  2. What does it mean ‘Bill’s won’?
  3. What does ‘seconding’ mean?

Answer:

  1. The Major was happy because Mr Bramble had agreed to give up boxing after one bout.
  2. It means that Bill has a moral victory in deciding to give up boxing so that his son is not ashamed to his being a boxer.
  3. ‘supporting’.

Question: He’s seen the error of his ways’, cried Percy, the resilient. That’s what he’s gone and done. At the eleventh hour.

  1. What error is Percy speaking about? Whose error?
  2. What has he done at last?
  3. Give the meaning of ‘resilient’.

Answer:

  1. Percy is speaking about Bill’s error in taking part in another boxing match.
  2. Bill has abandoned boxing at last.
  3. ‘one who quickly recovers from shock’.

Question: ‘This ought to be the happiest evening you’ve ever known. You ought to be singing like a little child.’

  1. Who is the speaker and who is he talking to?
  2. How could this be the happiest evening for the person who is addressed to?
  3. Explain ‘ought to be’.

Answer:

  1. The speaker is Major Percy (Mrs Bramble’s brother) who is talking to the trainer, Mr Fisher.
  2. This could be the happiest evening for Mr Fisher if he really loved Bill.
  3. ‘should be’.

Question: ‘Bill’, he cried, ‘You’re off your head. Think of the purse!’

  1.  Who is the speaker?
  2. What makes him cry?
  3. What do you mean by ‘purse’ here?

Answer:

  1. Jerry Fisher, the boxing trainer, is the speaker.
  2. Bill’s decision not to fight makes him cry.
  3. ‘money’.

Question: You think your pa’s a commerical. He ain’t. He’s a fighting man, doing his eight stone four ringside, and known to all as Young Porky’.

  1. Who is the speaker?
  2. What did the boy, Harold, believe to be his father’s job?
  3. What do you mean by ‘ain’t’ here?

Answer:

  1. Bill Fisher, the boxing trainer, is the speaker.
  2. The boy, Harold, believed that his father was a touring representative of a firm.
  3. ‘is not’.

Question: ‘That’s right, Harold,’ he said reviving, ‘I’ve given it up.’

  1. Who is the speaker?
  2. What has he given up?
  3. Give the meaning of ‘reviving’.

Answer:

  1. Bill or Mr Brown, Harold’s father, is the speaker.
  2. He has given up boxing.
  3. ‘recovering from the shock’.

Question: How long do you suppose they’d go on calling me, ‘Goggles’ if they knew that you were my father?’

  1. Who is the speaker?
  2. Who are ‘they’? What would make them stop calling the speaker ‘Goggles’?
  3. What do you mean by ‘Goggles’?

Answer:

  1. Harold is the speaker.
  2. The fact of his father being a famous boxer would stop them (Harold’s class fellows) from calling him ‘Goggles’.
  3. ‘a pair of glasses.’

Question: Pa, can’t you give me a picture of yourself boxing I could swank like anything. And you don’t know how sick a chap gets of having chaps call him, ‘Goggles’.

  1. Who is the speaker?
  2. What are his feelings in wanting to show off his father’s picture as a boxer?
  3. Give the meaning of ‘swank’.

Answer:

  1. Harold is the speaker.
  2. He has the feelings of pride and excitement.
  3. ‘boast’.

SHORT ANSWER QUESTIONS (SOLVED)

Answer each of the following questions in 30-40 words.

Question: Why did Mrs Bramble address her son as “dearie”? (CBSE 2014)

Answer: Mrs Bramble was very proud of her son Harold as Harold was a genius and different from other ordinary children. Out of love for her she addresses him as “dearie”.

Question: ‘Bill and his wife were a little afraid of their wonderful child’. Why? (CBSE 2014)

Or

His very perfection had led to a series of ‘evasions’ on the part of Mr and Mrs Bramble. Explain. (CBSE 2014)

Answer: Bill and his wife knew that their son Harold was a child prodigy. He was excellent in his studies and behaviour. Both were made to believe that Harold would be ashamed to know that his father was a boxer. So, they were a bit afraid of him. They continued to hide the truth from Harold.

Question: Why did Bill think of trying out a job as an instructor? (CBSE 2014)

Answer: Bill came to believe that Harold would not be happy to know that his father was a professional boxer. Harold might feel embarrassed and ashamed of him. So, bill decided to give up boxing and try out a job as an instructor at some school or college.

Question: Which event was Mrs Bramble waiting for that could end all her anxieties? (CBSE 2014)

Answer: Mrs. Bramble was waiting for the last fight her husband would have with Murphy. Even if Mr Bramble would lose he was to get a hundred and twenty pounds. That amount, Mrs. Bramble thought, would end all her worries and enable them to lead a comfortable life.

Question: Bill Bramble brought about major changes in his life after the birth of his son Harold. What were they? (CBSE 2014)

Answer: After the birth of his son Harold Bramble began to feel ashamed of reading his name as a boxer in print. He began to hide his profession lest Harold should feel embarrassed about it. He lied to the boy that he was a firm’s touring representative.

Question: Why did Bill stop Jerry from uttering anything? (CBSE)

Answer: Jerry Fisher, Bill’s trainer, was angry at Bill’s refusal to fight. So he wanted to retaliate by telling Bill’s secret to the child Harold. As Bill did not want his son Harold to know that he was a professional boxer, he stopped Jerry from uttering anything.

Question:What  changed Bill’s outlook towards life? (CBSE 2014)

Answer: Bill had a negative attitude towards life. He felt guilty at his having been a professional boxer. He felt that Harold, his son, would feel ashamed of himself on learning about his profession. But when Harold said that he was proud of being the son of a famous boxer, he felt relieved and happy.

Question: How did Harold react on learning about his father’s profession?

Answer: Harold was at first angry to learn that he was not told that he was the son of a famous boxer, Young Porky. Then he felt sad that if he knew who he was no one at school would have made fun of him by calling him ‘Goggles’.

Question: What was the end of their (Jerry and Harold’s) incidental meeting? (CBSE 2014)

Answer: Jerry Fisher, Bill’s trainer, decided to reveal to Harold the secret of his father being a professional boxer. He met Harold and revealed the secret. Harold felt proud of being the son of a great boxer. He was angry at the fact that he was deprived of the glory and honour for a long time.

Question: Who was Jerry Fisher? What did he say to try and convince Bill to change his mind? (CBSE 2014)

Answer: Jerry Fisher was the trainer of Bill Bramble. He was angry with Bill for deciding not to fight. He tried to convince him that he would earn a lot of money if he fought. He said he should also think of all the troubles he had gone through to earn name and fame as a boxer.

Question: What was it that Harold did not like about his mother?

Answer: Mrs Bramble treated her grown-up child, Harold, as a kid. She would call him ‘dearie’. She would refer to herself in the third person. Harold did not like this strange way of talking to him. He often felt bad and irritated about it.

Question: When Mr Bramble came to know that he was to become a father what were some of the names he decided upon? Why?

Answer: Mr. Bramble thought about the names of famous sports persons for his child. He wanted to name his child John, if a boy, after Mr John L Sullivan, or if a girl, Marie, after Miss Marie Lloyd. It was so because he wanted his child to earn name and fame as a sportsperson.

Question: What made Mr Bramble to return home leaving his training midway?

Answer: Mr Bramble learnt that the fight in which he was to take part was a national affair and it was to be reported in the Mail with his photograph. He feared that his son, Harold, would come to know about his real identity, which he had hidden from him for so long. So he decided to stop his training and come back home.

Question: How did Mr Percy try to dissuade Mr Bramble from taking part in the boxing contest?

Answer: Mr Percy, Mrs Bramble’s brother, tried to dissuade Mr Bramble from taking part in the boxing contest. He sent him letters and tracts. He told him about the bad consequences if his son Harold came to know about his real profession.

Question: What tells you of Harold’s interest in boxing?

Answer: Harold himself speaks about his interest in boxing and boxers. He tells how one of his friends has a snapshot of Jimmy Wilde. He wants his father to defeat Jimmy Murphy to get a chance with Sid Sampson for the Lonsdale belt.

Question: Do you agree with Harold’s parents’ decision of hiding from him the fact that his father was a boxer? Why / Why not?

Answer: No, the decision was wrong. There is no shame in being a sportsperson or a boxer. Every physical activity is as dignified as any intellectual activity. Harold’s parents should not have hidden the fact of his father’s profession. There was nothing shameful about it.

Question: Harold was a model child but for one thing that marred his ‘perfe ction’. What was it?

Answer: Harold was a model child, different from ordinary children. He was fully devoted to his books. He was a model of good behaviour. But his ‘perfection’ was marred by deliberate falsehood on the part of his parents. His parents evaded the truth and lied to him about his father’s profession.

Question: Why did Harold’s parents think it prudent to keep him in dark about his father’s profession?

Answer: Harold’s parents thought that boxing did not enjoy good reputation, and that being a professional boxer was not something to be proud of. They feared their child would feel ashamed of himself if he learnt that his father was a boxer.

Question: Name the two persons who were mainly responsible for keeping Harold in dark about his father’s true identity.

Answer: The senior curate of the parish and Mrs Bramble’s brother, Major Percy Stokes, were mainly responsible for convincing Harold’s parents not to disclose the true identity of his father to him as they believed that boxing was not a respectable profession.

Question: Was Mr Bramble ashamed of his profession? Why did he agree to the suggestion that he should conceal his professional identity from his son?

Answer: Mr Bramble had been proud of being a professional boxer before the birth of Harold. He was the most obliging of men. When he was asked to suppress his profession for the better development of his child, he agreed to the suggestion without demur.

VALUE – BASED LONG ANSWER QUESTIONS (SOLVED)

Answer the following questions in 80-100 words each.

Question: One should take pride in one’s profession. Comment upon the statement in the context of the story ‘Keeping It from Harold’.

Or

Are Mrs and Mr Bramble justified in not taking pride in their profession. Do you agree? Give reasons for your answer. (CBSE 2014)

Answer: You should really take pride in your profession. Only then can others give you respect and recognition. Those who look down upon their profession remain guilt-ridden and a failure. In the story ‘Keeping It from Harold’ both Mrs and Mr Bramble are guilty of undermining the profession of boxing. Mr Bramble is a famous boxer, known as ‘Young Porky’. Uptil his son’s birth he thinks high of his profession. Then both he and his wife come to believe that their son Harold would feel embarrassed and ashamed of the fact that he was the son of a boxer. They keep Mr Bramble’s profession a secret from Harold. They are pleasantly shocked when Harold feels angry at being deprived of the glory and honour of being a famous boxer’s son. This proves that his parents were not justified in downgrading a good profession. Boxing, though an aggressive and bloody game, is an honourable profession like any other profession.

Question: Harold is considered to be fond of only intellectual activities. He proves to be much maturer than his parents think. How?

Answer: Harold is an intelligent boy who is considered to be a model in studies and behaviour. Everyone at school praises him. He has already won some prizes in academics. He is a bespectacled child. His parents are in a bit of awe of him. His mother, Mrs Bramble, calls him ‘dearie’ and looks upon him as a child prodigy. His father is equally fond and proud of him. His parents come to believe that he should not know that he is the son of a professional boxer. He can never think that he could be a lover of boxing and boxers. When Harold learns about his being the son of a famous boxer, he feels angry of being deprived of glory and honour. He tells his parents that if the fact was known to his school children they would never have dared to make fun of him by calling ‘Goggles’. His interest in games, especially boxing, shows that is much maturer than his parents can ever think of.

Question: Jerry Fisher, in his pursuit to unravel the secret that the Brambles had hidden so long from Harold, actually helped the Bramble family.Discuss. (CBSE)

Answer: The Brambles had not told their son Harold that his father was a professional boxer. They were afraid that Harold would feel bad and bitter about the truth. So they told a lie to him that his father was a firm’s touring representative. Mr Bramble wanted to take part for the last time in a boxing match. He went for training with Jerry Fisher. When he learnt that the match would be reported in the Mail with his photograph he got frightened. He thought that their secret would be out. So he withdrew himself from the training. As they needed money, the matter caused both he and his wife a lot of worry and tension. Jerry Fisher, in anger, revealed their secret to their son Harold. When Harold announced his itnerest in boxing and his feelings of pride in being the son of a boxer, Mr and Mrs Bramble were relieved of their burden and guilt. Thus, Jerry Fisher, in revealing the secret, helped them regain normalcy.

Question: As Harold, express year feelings in a diary entry in 80-100 words on learning about your father’s profession. (CBSE)

Answer:

10th April, 20….

10 p.m.

Dear Diary

I am so happy and excited today! I want to dance like mad. Today Jerry Fisher, who is Dad’ trainer (I learnt only today), revealed that Dad is no other that ‘Young Porky’, a famous boxer. I would not believe my ears. Dad and a boxer? I had been told that he was a touring representative of a firm, My father was ready to sacrifice name and fame and money just for my so-called dignity. I appreciate his feelings. At the same time I feel sad that I have been deprived of the honour and glory of being the son of a great boxer. I have asked Dad to give me his photograph to swank it before my friends ever ready to make fun of me as ‘Goggles’. I have also asked Dad to fight and beat Murphy. I want him to win the bout at all costs. How I love you, Dad!

Question: As Major Percy, write a letter to your friend expressing your remorse at your failure to keep Mr Bramble away from a devilish game.

Answer:

10 Green House Susse
4th April, 20……….

Dear John

I wish I were dead this moment. You know, I am deadly against boxing which is a Devil’s game. Boxing is simply inhuman. I believe boxers are fated to go to Hell. I did my best to save Mr Bramble, my sister’s husband, from perdition. I was happy when Mr Bramble came back home deciding not to participate in the bout with Jimmy Murphy. My sister resented his coming home. I tried to persuade her to see reason and forget the money involved. Then Jerry Fisher-Mr Bramble’s trainer-undid all that I had done. He told the secret to Harold, and Harold-God save him-was so exultant on knowing that he was the son of a boxer! How mean on his part.

I’ve decided never to step in the house of those Brambles.

Yours sincerely

Percy

Question: ‘Keeping It from Harold’ underlines the idea that boxing is as dignified as any other activity, physical or mental. What happens when we downplay one activity over the other, especially our own ability? What should be our attitude?

Answer: Mr Bramble, a famous boxer, hides his profession from his intellectually brilliant son, fearing that he might come to hate him. He decides to stop boxing.

We feel that when we downplay one activity over the other illogically, we are not doing something fair. If we happen to downplay and dislike our own ability, like Mr Bramble, we are likely to fall in our own eyes. We lose our self-confidence and self-pride. Others may or may not despise us but we begin to despise ourselves. The Brambles are surprised when their son says that he would have loved to be known as the son of a famous boxer.
Therefore, we need to be proud of our own achievements. We should be proud of whatever profession we are in. We should try to excel in it and feel proud of what we do. Only then will other people love and respect us. We should remember that no activity or profession is undignified or low. It is our thinking that makes something desirable or undesirable.

Question: “He was a professional boxer. That was the trouble.” Discuss.

Answer: There are many people who look down upon boxing. They think that sports like boxing are violent and are hence not meant for gentle folk. In the story, such people are represented by the senior curate of the parish and major Percy Stokes who take upon them the responsibility of guarding the morality of the people. They persuade the Brambles to hide from their son Harold the profession of his father. Mr Bramble, who has been a good boxer and known as Young Porky’, comes to believe them. Being modest, he gives in to their demands. In spite of having pride in his profession, he agrees to hide his true identity. He makes this sacrifice for the sake of his son. He wants his son not to feel ashamed of himself for his being a boxer. It is again for the sake of his son that he decides not to take part in the contest with Jimmy Murphy, though he needs money badly. He fears his son will come to know of his father’s true identity as the event is going to be reported in the Mail.

Little does he know that his son is fond of boxing. He has gathered a lot of information about boxing and boxers. When the truth is out, his son is annoyed at being kept in the dark that he is the son of a professional boxer.

Question: ‘Pa, can’t you give me a picture of yourself boxing? I could swank like anything. And you don’t know how sick a chap gets of having chaps call him, ‘Goggles’.’

In the light of the above extract, analyze Harold’s feeling on learning that his father was a professional boxer.

Answer: Harold overheard his father talking about him. He was curious to know what he was talking about. Jerry Fisher, in order to take revenge on Bill, told Harold that his father was not a commercial traveler but the famous boxer ‘Young Porky’, and that his father was not going to fight with Murphy because of him. Harold was astonished to learn the fact. He surprised everyone by revealing that he had a bet and if there were no contest, he was going to lose his bet. He said that his friends had the autographs of famous sport spersons. He felt annoyed that he had been kept in the dark about his father being a boxer. Nobody would have laughed at him and called him ‘Goggles’ if they had known who his father was.

Mr Bramble told Mr Fisher that it would be better for them to go back to the White Hart. After they had left, Harold continued talking about the relative merits of Sid Sampson and the Ginger Nut, the two famous boxers. There was animated expression on his face..

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