Word Meaning, Summary, Important Questions Of Chapter 1 Third Level | Class 12

Chapter 4 A Thing of Beauty

Hindi Meaning Of Difficult Words | Chapter 1 Third Level

1Stacka pile of objects, typically one that is neatly arrangedढेरheap, agglomeration, hoard
2Timetablesa schedule showing the departure and arrival times of trains, buses or aircraftटाइम टेबलprogram, schedule.
3Waking dreaman involuntary dream occuring while a person is awakeजाग्रत स्वप्नdaydream
4Wanderwalk; roamउधर-इधर घूमनाhang about, peregrinate
5Suburbanresidentialउपनगरीयcommuter, dormitory
6Ducked lower the head or body quicklyशरीर झुका लेना…………
7Arched curvedधनुषाकारdomed, rounded
8Bumpingknock or run into somethingटकरानाimpinge, collide, plow
9Vesta garment worn on the upper part of the bodyस्वेटरsweater, pullover, singlet
10Snappedbreak suddenly and completelyतोड़नाbreakage, despoil
11Locomotivea powered railway vehicle used for pulling trainsरेल इंजनsteam engine
12Clerkadministratorअफ़सरofficer, swab

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About The Poet | Walter Braden “Jack” Finney | Chapter 1 Third Level

Walter Braden “Jack” Finney (October 2, 1911 – November 14, 1995) was an American author. His best-known works are science fiction and thrillers, including The Body Snatchers and Time and Again. The Third Level by Jack Finney is an engrossing story set in the 1950s. The story is studded with numerous undertones of irony. It takes you back in time. It was a world when people hadn’t seen two of the bloodiest wars in the history of mankind. The story brings to light the fact that figments of someone’s imagination can be used for shying away from reality, which in all fairness, is harsh enough.

Short Summary Of Chapter 1 Third Level
In English

‘The Third Level’ is the story of Charley who is an ordinary thirty one year old fellow from New York. He recounts a curious incident, which took place in the third level of Grand Central Station. Charley says nobody including his psychiatrist friend is ready to believe that such an incident could have happened because everybody (even Charley) knows that the third level in Grand Central Station does not exist.

Charley’s psychiatrist said that Charley was always looking for an exit to escape from the burden and monotony of city life. Everyone except Charley agreed with this explanation.

Remembering that particular night during summer, the narrator says he was in a hurry to rush back home to his wife, Louisa. He had been working late, and in order to reach home quickly he decided to take a subway from Grand Central Station as it was faster than a bus. Having found no train from the first level of the station, Charley went down to the second level. As he was climbing down the stairs, Charley walked into an arched doorway and got lost. Charley says it is easy to get lost in Grand Central Station because the doorways, stairs and corridors always lead him to unexpected destination.

Charley all alone continued to walk down the corridor which seemed to take him downward, until he arrived on the third level at Grand Central Station. At first, the third level seemed similar to the second level. However, soon Charley noticed that the room was smaller, there were fewer ticket windows and train gates, and the information booth in the center was made of wood and quite ancient looking. There was a man inside the booth who wore a green eye shade and long black sleeve protectors. Charley also noticed the lights were comparatively dimmer on the third level; when he saw the open flame gaslights, he knew why.

Slowly, Charley started to notice other things happening around him. There were old fashioned railway engines, men and women wearing old style clothes, carrying accessories, such as the gold pocket watch, from an old era, and brass spittoons on the floor. In order to make sure that what he was seeing was real, Charley checked The World, a newspaper, which had gone out of print years ago. The front page of the newspaper had an article about President Cleveland; it was published in June 11, 1894!

Charley realized that he and his wife could travel anywhere from the third level of Grand Central Station, even travel back in time. He decided he would like to visit Galesburg, Illinois in the years 1894 where the summer evenings were more beautiful and tranquil, and the First and Second World Wars were far-far away. Charley decided to buy two coach tickets, one way. But when he started to pay for the tickets, the clerk refused to accept the money Charley offered. Clearly, he thought that Charley was trying to cheat him by giving him fake money. The clerk threatened to call the police. Charley didn’t want to get caught by Police, neither from the past nor from the present. Charley understood that the clerk would only accept money that was relevant in that time. That night Charley left only to return the next day with little less than two hundred dollars in old style bills. But he couldn’t find the same corridor, which led him to the third level of Grand Central Station. Charley tried again and again but failed to find it on each attempt. So, he stopped.

Meanwhile, his friend Sam Weiner had disappeared. Nobody knew where he was. But Charley felt that Sam was in Galesburg, in the year 1894; Charley went to school there and it was him who told Sam about the peaceful life at Galesburg.

One night when Charley was working on his stamp collection, he saw, lying among his first day covers, an envelop he had never seen before until then. It was addressed to his grandfather at his Galesburg house; the postmark showed the date as July 18, 1894. It had been left unopened until Charley opened it that night. It was a letter from Sam who assured Charley and Louisa that the third level was real. He urged them to keep looking for it and to visit him in Galesburg in 1894. This letter compelled Charley and now Louisa to continue their search of the corridor that would lead them to the third level.

Before leaving Sam had bought enough old style currency to help him start a new business in old Galesburg. Charley noted that Sam could not have gone back to doing what he did in New York; Sam was Charley’s psychiatrist.

Important Previous Year Questions From Chapter 1 Third Level

LA II (6 marks)

  1. Describe briefly the scene at the third level of Grand Central as seen (or seemed to be seen) by Charley. (2020)

SAI (2 marks)

  1. How many levels are there in the Grand Central Station? How did Charley reach the third level of the Grand Central Station?
  2. What is the role of the stamp – collection in the story?
  3. How did Charley ascertain that he had reached the 1894 world?
  4. Why did Charley run away from the third level?
  5. What was Sam’s answer to Charley’s dilemma?
  6. Why was Charley not able to get to Galesburg?
  7. How did Sam reach Galesburg? How did he settle down there?
  8. How did Sam’s mail reach Charley?

LA II (6 marks)

  1. What was Charley’s strange experience at the Grand Central Station?
  2. Do you think Charley was really a worried man as his psychiatrist friend and others believed?

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Answer Of Chapter 1 Third Level
​ For The Above Questions

    1. When Charley reached the third level of the Grand Central Railway Station, New York much to his amazement, Charley saw a world that looked hundred years old, everyone was dressed like in 1890s, people had side burns and funny moustaches and beards. They had gold pocket watches with strings in their vests. Men wore derby hats, four buttoned suits and tiny lapels. Women wore dresses with leg of mutton sleeves, skirts to the top of high buttoned shoes. There was no electricity instead open-flame gaslights. The gas lights were dim and flickering. The currency which was used there was old fashioned. The locomotives running there were very small. There were brass spittoons on the floor. It was like Charley had deported himself in an old world setting.

    Grand Central Station, New York, has only two levels.

    One evening, Charley reached the station and then walked down to the second level to catch an early train to his home. While he was on the second level, he strangely happened to notice a doorway down. He followed the steps and reached the third level which was never heard or seen by anyone. In the third level Charley saw a hundred year old world and people.

    1. The stamps collection is the logic behind the story. It was Charley’s favorite pastime. In fact, this collection was passed on to Charley from his diseased grandfather. The most important fact about his collection is that this was the only thing that connected the old world and the new: the same thing but existing in two different worlds. This collection turned out to be useful for Sam, the psychiatrist friend when he attempted to convey to Charley the truth regarding the existence of the third level. It was by keeping his first day cover in Charley’s grandfather’s collection that Sam could make the same available to Charley.
    2. The World was a popular newspaper which stopped its publication before 1894. Having reached the third level of the Grand Central Station, Charley noticed that The World and the date, June 11, 1894 and confirmed that he was back in 1894. In the beginning, when he reached the third level, Charley was confused. Whatever he saw in the third level told him that he had travelled back to the past. This was confirmed when he saw The World. The lead story said something about President Cleveland and it was printed June 11, 1894.
    3. Charley was greatly amazed when he reached the hundred year old third level and was planning to buy two rail tickets to Galesburg where he had spent his childhood. But when he took out his money to pay the fare, the clerk found out that his notes were fake and thought that Charley was attempting to fool him. He warned him that he would call the police. Seeing that there was nothing good about police and jail in the hundred year old Galesburg, Charley ran away.
    4. Charley met his psychiatrist friend Sam and told him about this experience. The psychiatrist interpreted it as a mental disorder. Indicating his hobby of stamp collection and this sort of experience, the psychiatrist explained his abnormality to be escaping from the struggles of life by fantasizing. Soon his friends and wife began to consider Charley as a mental patient. But how! Charley was not abnormal. He was a happy man who loved his wife and friends and stamps. But the rest of the world believed that Charley was looking for an exit to escape his reality.
    5. Next day Charley went to a particular shop that sold old currency. He paid more for less old money and ran to the railway station. He hoped to buy train tickets this time to go to his old village. He reached the first level, went down to the second and searched for the door to the third level. Alas! The door had vanished. He searched and searched but could not find it again.
    6. Sam was smarter than Charley. From Charley’s experience, he learnt that one can get into the third level only once. He also believed that once out of the third level, one could never get back. Keeping this in mind, Sam first got old currency from the shop and then went to the railway station. He found the door to the third level as claimed by Charley, purchased ticket and reached the 1894 Galesburg, Charley’s village. Having reached there, Sam settled himself in hay business.
    7. When Sam reached the third level and landed n Galesburg, he became part of a hundred year old world, the year 1891 a world devoid of the modern media of communication. He had to Spend only on postal system but there was no ink between his old world and Charley’s present world. In order to send a nail to Charley, Sam sent it to Charley’s grandfather who still existed in the third level and the grandfather kept the mail in his stamp collection and consequently Charley received the mail.
    8. One night, while in a hurry to catch a subway train from the Grand Central Station, Charley took a path, which led him to the third level of Grand Central Station. On arriving here, he encountered something, which appeared outright strange to him. The information booth was made of wood, the lights were open flame gaslight and therefore dim. There where old fashioned railway engines, men and women in old fashioned clothes, carrying old fashioned accessories, such as the gold pocket watch. There were brass spittoons on the floors. By now Charley had an inkling that the path had brought him to the past. In order to confirm his doubt he decided to check the newspaper. The newspaper was ‘The world’ and the date on it read June, 11, 1894. Publication of the same had been stopped hundred years ago. When Charley went to buy two tickets to Galesburg, Illinois, the clerk refused to sell him tickets because he did not recognize the new currency, which Charley was offering.
    9. No, Charley was a happy man. Even though the modern man is generally unhappy and worried, Charley appears to be quite a normal man. The day when he found out the third level, Charley was in a hurry to reach home, to meet his wife. A man who longs to get home and happy with his wife is a happy man. Moreover, Charley had a good collection of stamps which he enjoyed in his free time.

    Yes, Charley seems to be a worried man, an escapist and a maniac dreamer also. Charley belonged to the post World War time, 1984 and anxiety and insecurity were a part of everyone’s psyche. Everyone wanted to escape to a peaceful place but there was probably none. Charley, being a similar escapist, found peace by escaping into his world of stamps and unknown places in his imagination.

For more chapters word meanings click on the links given below.


Chapter 1 The Last Lesson 
Chapter 2 Lost Spring 
Chapter 3 Deep Water 
Chapter 4 The Rattrap 
Chapter 5 Indigo 
Chapter 6 Poets and Pancakes 
Chapter 7 The Interview 
Chapter 8 Going Places


Chapter 1 My Mother at Sixty-six 
Chapter 2 An Elementary School Classroom in a Slum 
Chapter 3 Keeping Quiet 
Chapter 4 A Thing of Beauty 
Chapter 5 A Roadside Stand 
Chapter 6 Aunt Jennifer’s Tigers


Chapter 1 Third Level  
Chapter 2 The Tiger King 
Chapter 3 The Enemy 
Chapter 4 Journey to the End of the Earth 
Chapter 5 Should Wizard Hit Mommy? 
Chapter 6 On the Face of It 
Chapter 7 Evans Tries an O-level 
Chapter 8 Memories of Childhood

Download Free pdf For NCERT English Solutions Class 12

Chapter 1 The Last Lesson 
Chapter 2 Lost Spring 
Chapter 3 Deep Water 
Chapter 4 The Rattrap 
Chapter 5 Indigo 
Chapter 6 Poets and Pancakes 
Chapter 7 The Interview 
Chapter 8 Going Places

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