Word Meaning, Summary, Important Questions Of Chapter 8 Mijbil the Otter | Class 10
Hindi Meaning Of Difficult Words | Chapter 8 Mijbil the Otter
|1||An appalling spectacle||a shocking scene||एक भयावह तमाशा||astounding, dreadful, frightful.|
|2||As common as mosquitoes||easily found||मच्छरों की तरह आम है||….........|
|3||Cabled||sent a message by telegraph (an old method of communication)||तार द्वारा समाचार भेजना||connected, equipped, sent.|
|4||Craning||stretch out one’s body or neck in order to see something||गर्दन आगे निकालना||boosting, elevating, heaving|
|5||Crossed my mind||(a thought) came into my mind||विचार आना||reveal, strike, expose.|
|6||Flick||a quick, light movement||प्रहार||jerk, flip, stroke|
|7||Marshes||wetlands||दलदल||bog, quagmire, morass|
|8||Portly||stout||मोटा||adipescent, corpulent, crass|
|9||So as to speak||as it were (one could say this)||तो जैसा बोलना है||as it would be, as might be, in such a way that.|
|10||Squatting||to rest with your weight on your feet||उकडूँ बैठना||hunch, cower, cringe|
|11||Terrapin shell||the shell of small turtle found in North America||टेरापिन खोल||tortoise shell, carapace, horn-rimmed.|
|12||A stone’s throw||a very short distance||दोड़ी दूर पर||close range, holler, near.|
|13||Abreast||side by side||पास-पास||appositional, by jowl, closely|
|14||Accustomed||familiar||परिचित||usual, normal, habitual|
|15||Admiration||praise||प्रशंसा||compliment, magnification, laud|
|16||Affront||insult||अपमान||disgrace, offense, dishonor|
|17||Aloof and indifferent||keeping a distance||दुराव||detached, disinterested, incurious|
|18||Amazed||surprised||अचंभित||astonish, astound, bewilder|
|19||Ambush||to attack suddenly from a hidden position||घात लगाना||surprise attack, trap, snare|
|20||Apathy||absence of interest||उदासीनता||indifference, disinterest, unconcern|
|21||Appalling||shocking||डरावना||alarming, astounding, dreadful.|
|22||Apprarently||clearly||जाहिरा तौर पर||obviously, evidently, palpably|
|23||Armour||shield||कवच||harness, coat of mail, panzer|
|24||At length||at last||विस्तार से||ceaselessly, constantly, continually|
|25||Awarded||gave out||निर्णय करना||decide, take the plunge, judge|
|26||Badger||an animal||बिज्जू||hyena, brock, hyaena|
|27||Barrage||flood||नदी बांध||volley, fusillade, storm|
|29||Blood-spattered||blood covered||खून से लथपथ||gory, grisly, crimson.|
|30||Bounded on to||climbed up quickly||पर बँधा हुआ||enclosed, fringed, restricted.|
|31||Bowl||a container||कटोरा||chalice, teacup, porringer|
|32||Breakdown||a mechanical failure||टूट - फूट||dissolution, Breach, crack|
|33||Brontosaur||a prehistoric now extant||ब्रॉन्टोसोरस||apatosaurus, thunder lizard.|
|34||Casually||non-seriously||इत्तफ़ाक़ से||by chance, perchance, haphazardly|
|35||Characteristics||features||विशेषताएँ||attribute, quality, property|
|36||Charming||attractive||मनमोहक||adorable, cute, good-looking|
|37||Chinks||cracks||झनझन||ding, tinkle, tang|
|38||Chittering||make a twittering or chattering sound||चहकना||cheeping, chirruping, jargoning,|
|39||Christened||named||नाम दिया गया||baptize, call, lustrate|
|40||Chromium||a hard white metal used to make taps||क्रोमियम||…...........|
|41||Compulsive||irresistable||मजबूर||uncontrollable, compelling, overwhelming|
|42||Conceived||thought||विचार करना||mull, think, contemplate|
|43||Conjectural||based on guess||अनुमान पर आधारित||speculative, theoretical, hypothetical|
|44||Corridor||verandah||गलियारा||aisle, anteroom, gallery|
|45||Crook of my knees||soft inside part where you bend your knee||मेरे घुटनों का टेढ़ा||bend, curve, kink|
|46||Crouching||squat; typically in order to avoid detection or to defend oneself||क्राउचिंग||kneel, cower, cringe|
|47||Curry||a dish||करी||groom, smooth, dress|
|48||Damaged||broken||टूटा हुआ||defaced, deteriorated, out of gear|
|49||Distraction||diversion||व्याकुलता||quandary, ruction, stew|
|50||Distressed||troubled||तंग||tight, narrow, poky|
|51||Dragon||monster||ड्रैगन||drake, wyvern, tartar.|
|52||Dreaded||feared||डरना||fear, fright, panic|
|53||Dribble||repeated hits on a ball to make it go ahead||बूँद बूँद कर टपकना||trickle, drop, drizzle|
|54||Emerged||came out||उभर आया||jut, emerge, supervene|
|55||Eminently||highly; very||प्रमुख रूप से||greatly, highly, exceedingly|
|56||Engrossed||completely interested in||तल्लीन||immersed, absorbed|
|57||Eventful||full of events||घटनापूर्ण||occurring, decrescent|
|58||Exhaused||tired||थका हुआ||aweary, spun, forworn|
|59||Frontage||front side||अग्रभाग||contraposition, envisagement, Confrontation|
|60||Fumbling||trying to do something in a clumsy manner||लड़खड़ाता हुआ||flub, mishandle, screw up.|
|61||Gallop||run fast||सरपट दौड़ना||race, canter, rush|
|62||Giggles||laughs||मूर्ख की तरह हंसना||titter, snigger, snicker|
|63||Glared||stare||गुस्से से घूरना||scowl, frown, lour|
|64||Grab||hold, catch||पकड़ लेना||Capture, arrest, graspingness|
|65||Gratitude||thankfulness||कृतज्ञता||obligation, indebtedness, debt|
|66||Growled||grumbled||बढ़ता गया||snarl, bark, yap|
|69||Hurried||made haste||जल्दी कर दिया||hasten, dash, rush|
|70||Infuriated||very angry||संक्रमित||enrage, incense, madden|
|71||Insisted||stressed||ज़ोर देना||emphasize, stand up, intonate|
|72||Irritation||frustation||उत्तेजना||excitement, stimulation, provocation|
|73||Juggles||plays with||जादू||artifice, device, dodge|
|74||Lead||get on||आगे बढ़ना||proceed, come up, gain upon|
|75||Leopard||a wild animal||तेंदुआ||…..............|
|76||Lid||cover||ढक्कन||bonnet, cap, shroud|
|78||Marbles||small glass balls||पत्थर||head, mind, reason|
|79||Mink||an animal||एक प्रकार का ऊदबिलाव||…...........|
|80||Mole||an animal||छछूँदर||rat, musk|
|81||Native||one's place of birth||जन्मज||connate, congenital, to the manner born|
|82||Nuzzle||to rub gently with the nose||नाक से रगड़ना||nudge, prod, push|
|83||Packed||put into||पैक किया हुआ||load, stuff, cram|
|84||Pastime||distraction; entertainment||क्रीड़ा||play, dalliance, frolic|
|85||Paws||front part of foot||पंजे||claw, toe cap, clutch|
|86||Ping-pong balls||table-tennis balls||पिंग-पोंग बॉल्स||globe, baseball, sphere|
|87||Plunging||falling; sinking||डूबनेवाला||dive, wade in, fall, throw oneself|
|88||Pointed||sharp||नोकदार||spiry, jaggy, cuspidalate|
|89||Precisely||exactly||ठीक-ठीक||strictly, surely, orderly|
|90||Previously||earlier||पहले से||already, beforehand, antecedently|
|91||Profound||deep||गहरा||deeply, abyssal, cimmerian|
|92||Prospect||possibility||संभावना||hope, expectation, anticipation|
|93||Provoking||causing anger or some other reaction||उत्तेजक||stimulating, fermentative, dithyrambic|
|94||Railings||protecting fence||रक्षा बाड़||thread, strand, fibre|
|95||Random||casual||अनियमित||Irregular, Erratic, abnormal|
|96||Recognition||identification; acknowledgement||अभिज्ञान||recognizance, memento, souvenir|
|97||Resemblem||looked like||मेल खाना||dovetail, go together, harmonize|
|98||Resumed||started again||दुबारा आरम्भ करना||restart, recommence, begin again|
|99||Retained||kept||रोक रखना||adjourn, hold in|
|100||Ricocheting bullet||a bullet with changes direction after hitting a surface||रिकोषेटिंग बुलेट||…..........|
|101||Rituals||a religious ceremony||अनुष्ठान||rite, celebration|
|102||Screaming out||crying||चिल्लाकर कहना||howl, screech, shriek.|
|103||Seal||an animal||जलव्याघ्र||sea lion, sea dog|
|104||Shreds||pieces||टुकड़े टुकड़े करना||crumble, kibble, pulverize|
|105||Shuffling||dragging (here)||पैर घसीटना||shamble, drag one's feet, stumble|
|107||Spacious||big||विशाल||huge, giant, large|
|108||Spectacle||scene||तमाशा||pageant, farce, slapstick|
|109||Sploshed||splashed||छिड़का हुआ पानी||splatter, swash, plash.|
|110||Sprayed||threw||छिटकाना||sprinkle, sparge, dabble|
|111||Spring up||jump||उत्पन्न होना||burgeon, expand, explode.|
|112||Squawks and shrieks||cries||स्क्वाक्स और चीखें||roar, shout, wail.|
|113||Squirmed||twisted about||ऐंठना||extract, feeze, pleach|
|114||Static||motionless||गतिहीन||sedentary, stagnant, inert|
|115||Stoat||a kind of animal||एक प्रकार का रोवेंदार चौपाया||…..............|
|116||Symmetrical||in symmetry||सममित||regular, uniform, consistent|
|117||Tamed||domesticate (an animal)||पालतू||pet, domestic|
|118||Thraldom||being in the control of||ग़ुलामी||vassalage, servitude, kabbalah|
|119||Took her into my confidence||here, shared with her my experiences or secrets||उसे मेरे अनुभवों के साथ साझा किया गया||….............|
|120||Transporting||taking||परिवहन||convey, carry, move|
|121||Trickle||flow in a small stream||बूंद-बूंद कर बहना||dribble, drizzle, flow|
|122||Trot off||to leave||टालमटोल करना||amble, hurry, jog.|
|123||Tug||pull||खिंचाव||exhaustion, gravitation, allurement|
|124||Upright||straight||सीधा||direct, perpendicular, erect|
|125||Variety||newness||विविधता||diversity, multifariousness, diversifiction|
|126||Vevlet||soft cloth||मख़मली||soft, delicate|
|128||Wild with joy||greatly in joy||आनंद के साथ जंगली||crazy with joy, delirious, extremely happy.|
|129||Whimpered||cried softly||बच्चे का सा रोना||cry, sniffle, snivel|
|130||Whipped off||quickly took off||मार पड़ी है||hurry, issue, light out.|
About The Poet | Chapter 8 Mijbil the Otter
Gavin Maxwell lived from 15 July 1914 to 7 September 1969. He was a naturalist and author, best known for his work with otters. His most popular book was Ring of Bright Water, published in 1960. This described how he brought an otter back from Iraq and raised it in Scotland. The otter, Mijbil, was eventually identified as a previously unknown sub-species of the Smooth-coated Otter, since named after Maxwell: Lutrogale perspicillata maxwelli. Maxwell after the death of his dog decided not to keep the dog as the pet rather something else. He gets an opportunity to bring an otter which he named as Mijbil from Basra in Iraq. The lesson tells us about a great concern of a human being for animals. The otter was a kind of unknown animal to the author. When it came first to him it looked like a small dragon. In the beginning, Mijbil showed no interest in Maxwell but later on he lost his apathy and started showing interest in him. He enjoyed the water in the bathroom, small toys of the room and other small articles which in his surrounding. Thus it was a kind of animal has great understanding of the humans.
Short Summary Of Chapter 8 Mijbil the Otter
In this story the author Gavin Maxwell tells us about his pet. After the death of the dog, he thought to have another pet. Early in 1956 he travelled to Southern Iraq. There he saw some Arab people having an otter as a pet. Then, pet he also thought of having an otter. He told this to his friend. His mail was due. Therefore, with a friend he went to Basra to receive his mail. His friend collected his mail and went away. After he had left, he received a sack in which there was an otter. The narrator christened it, Mijbil. First the otter slept on the floor but soon he entered the bed till the servant bought tea. When it went to bathroom it plunged and rolled in the bath tub joyfully. The narrator was extremely surprised when he found it struggling with the water tap. It had learnt how to turn on the tap. It spent most of its time playing with the rubber ball and marbles.
He was staying at Basra while he had to move to England and then to Camusfearna. But the problem was that some of the airlines did not allow transporting animals. Therefore, the narrator had to choose a different flight that allowed animals on board. As a result, Mijbil was packed in a box. Then the narrator went for the meals. When he returned to his room, he noticed blood coming out from the air holes. He got frightened. He hurriedly opened it and saw that Mijbil was almost unconscious. He removed all the sharp edges from the box and placed it again into the box. The time was passing and he managed to hire a taxi. There were only ten minutes for his flight. So he sat at the back seat of the taxi and placed the box on his lap. Somehow he managed to catch the flight and he boarded the plane. The air hostess was somewhat friendly and she allowed the narrator to place the otter on his lap. But as soon as the narrator opened the box the otter disappeared in the plane. This frightened the passengers. But the airhostess helped him to find out Mijbil again.
In London people did not recognize otters. They used to make blind guesses to recognize the animal. The most surprising event was when the labourer was digging his hole in the street. On seeing the animal, he placed down his tools and when the narrator neared him, he shouted, “What is that supposed to be?”
The title tells us exactly what the author, Gavin Maxwell narrates in the account Mijbil the Otter and his cute antics and human like traits. He gets an opportunity to bring an otter which he named as Mijbil from Basra in Iraq. The lesson tells us about a great concern of a human being for animals. The otter was a kind of unknown animal to the author. When it came first to him it looked like a small dragon. In the beginning, Mijbil showed no interest in Maxwell but later on he lost his apathy and started showing interest in him. He enjoyed the water in the bathroom, small toys of the room and other small articles in his surrounding. Thus it was a kind of animal which has great understanding of the humans.
Through the biographical account the writer expresses his love for animals, particularly the otter which he fondly named Mijbil. He fondly describes the human like characteristics of Mijbil. The way Maxwell describes the adorable animal is almost akin to a description of a cute and playful child. It is amazing how affectionate and intelligent otters are. The writer records his unfathomable love for Mijbil and how he changed his life drastically.
The message conveyed by this story is the immense love that the author had for his otter which he named Mijbil. He fondly describes the human like characteristics of Mijbil. The way Maxwell describes the adorable animal is almost akin to a description of a cute and playful child. It is amazing how affectionate and intelligent otters are. It is clear that the writer is a great animal lover and records all his joys and also the amazing events that unfolded in his life with the arrival of the lovable Mijbil.
- Mijbil the Otter
Otters belong to a comparatively small group of animals called Mustellines, shared by badger, mongoose, weasel, stoat, mink and others. They are found in large numbers in marshes. Arabs keep them as pets and tame them. Otters love to spread water and splash in it. Maxwell’s otter was of a race previously unknown to science and was at length named by zoologists Lutrogale Perspicillata Maxwelli, after the name of the author. When the author first took Mijbil to the bathroom, the otter first went wild with joy in the water. He plunged and rolled in it. He jumped up and down the length of the bathtub. He made enough slosh and splash. After two days, the otter suddenly disappeared and went to the bathroom to play in the water and opened the tap on his own. While on the flight, as soon as his box was opened, Mijbil ran out. Then it ran all over the place scaring all the passengers. It created a chaos and most of the people in the plane got scared. The airhostess requested the passengers to stay calm and assured them that she would find the otter. After a while, Mijbil returned to his owner, climbed on his knee and began to rub its nose on his face and neck. In London, Mijbil used to follow the narrator while walking on the streets. He developed certain habits during those walks. He went with him like children playing, running and touching things in the street. He would take the author near the wall of a primary school and then gallop on it. He was just like a playful, energetic and naughty child and brought a lot of love in the author’s life.
Squirmed- twisted about;
Thraldom- being under the control of;
Armour-a metallic coat worn for self-defence;
Provoking- causing anger or some other reaction;
Dreaded the prospect-was in great fear of something that would happen in the future;
Profound- deep, insightful;
Nuzzle-to rub gently with the nose;
Terrapin shell-the shell of small turtle found in North America;
Engrossed- completely interested in:
Upright-post or rod placed straight up:
Affront-insult; Abreast-side by side.
TYPE I: REFERENCE TO CONTEXT (VERY SHORT ANSWER QUESTIONS)
TYPE I: REFERENCE TO CONTEXT (VERY SHORT ANSWER QUESTIONS)
Read the extracts and answer the following questions:
- When I casually mentioned this to a friend, he as casually replied that I had better get one in the Tigris marshes, for there they were as common as mosquitoes, and were often tamed by the Arabs. We were going to Basra to the Consulate-General to collect and answer our mail from Europe. At the Consulate-General we found that my friend’s mail had arrived but that mine had not.
(i) What was they’?
(ii) Where were they going to get the otter?
(iii) What did the narrator mention casually to his friend?
(iv) What did the author find at the Consulate-General?
(i) ‘They’ refers to the otter.
(ii) They were going to get the otter from Tigris marshes.
(iii) The narrator had mentioned it to his friend that he was planning to acquire an otter as a pet.
(iv) At the Consulate-General, the author found that his mail had not arrived while his friend’s mail had arrived.
- Mijbil, as I called the otter, was, in fact, of a race previously unknown to science, and was at length christened by zoologists Lutrogale Perspicillata Maxwelli, or Maxwell’s otter. For the first twenty-four hours Mijbil was neither hostile nor friendly; he was simply aloof and indifferent, choosing to sleep on the floor as far from my bed as possible.
(i) Who was Mijbil?
(ii) How did the otter behave for the first twenty-four hours?
(iii) What was special about Mijbil?
(iv) Why is the otter called ‘Maxwell’s otter”?
(i) Mijbil was the name of the otter that the narrator brought.
(ii) For the first 24 hours the otter was indifferent and stayed aloof as far as possible from the narrator. (iii) Mybil belonged to a race previously unknown to science.
(iv) The otter was christened by zoologist Maxwell. So, in his honour, it was called Maxwell’s otter.
- I made a body-belt for him and took him on a lead to the bathroom, where for half an hour he went wild with joy in the water, plunging and rolling in it, shooting up and down the length of the bathtub underwater, and making enough slosh and splash for a hippo. This, I was to learn, is a characteristic of otters.
(i) What is a particular characteristic of otters?
(ii) What did the otter do inside the bathroom?
(iii) How did Mijbil react to the sight of water?
(iv) Why did the author make a body-belt?
(i) Playing with water is a particular characteristic of otters.
(ii) The otter played with water joyously inside the bathroom.
(iii) He went wild at the sight of water and plunged and rolled in it.
(iv) The author made a body-belt for himself in order to reign in his high energy and control his quick and energetic movements.
- Very soon Mij would follow me without a lead and come to me when I called his name. He spent most of his time in play. He spent hours shuffling a rubber ball round the room like a four-footed soccer player using all four feet to dribble the ball, and he could also throw it, with a powerful flick of the neck, to a surprising height and distance.
(i) What was the favourite time pass of Mijbil?
(ii) What did the otter do when the narrator called his name?
(iii) What tells you that Mijbil had begun to obey the narrator?
(iv) What has been referred to as a four-footed soccer player?
(i)The favourite time pass of Mijbil was to shuffle the rubber ball using all his four legs.
(ii) The otter used to follow the narrator when he called his name.
(iii) After his earlier indifference Mijbil would follow the author without a lead and come to him when he called his name.
(iv) The otter has been referred to as a four-footed player of soccer.
- The British airline to London would not fly animals, so I booked a flight to Paris on another airline, and from there to London. The airline insisted that Mij should be packed into a box not more than eighteen inches square, to be carried on the floor at my feet.
(i) Where was Mij being taken?
(ii) How was Mij being taken?
(iii) Why did the author book a flight to Paris?
(iv) What did the airline insist upon?
(i) Mij was being taken to London.
(ii) Mij was being taken by packing him in a box.
(iii) The British airline to London would not fly animals, so he booked a flight to Paris on another airline, and from there to London.
(iv) The airline insisted upon the fact that Mij should be packed in a box so that it can be carried.
- When returned, there was an appalling spectacle. There was complete silence from the box, but from its airholes and chinks around the lid, blood had trickled and dried. I whipped off the lock and tore open the lid, and Mij, exhausted and blood spattered, whimpered and caught at my leg.
(i) What was inside the box?
(ii) What was the condition of the box when the narrator returned?
(iii) What was Mijbil’s condition when the author opened the box?
(iv) Why did the author open the box?
(i) Mijbil was lying exhausted and blood spattered inside the box.
(ii) When the narrator returned, there was complete silence inside the box. Blood was coming out from the airholes and around the lid.
(iii) When the author opened the box he found that Mijbil was exhausted and blood spattered. He whimpered and caught at his leg
(iv) The author opened the box because Mij was caged inside it.
- It was just ten minutes until the time of the flight, and I the airport was five miles distant. I put the miserable Mij back into the box, holding down the lid with my hand.
(i) How far was the airport?
(ii) How was Mij carried to the airport?
(iii) What was the author’s state of mind?
(iv) Why did the author not help Mij despite its weary condition?
(i) The airport was at a distance of 5 miles.
(ii) The narrator put Mij in the box again and held down the lid of the box with his hand.
(iii) The author was in a hurry as he had a flight to catch. At the same time he was worried for his pet. (iv) The author couldn’t help Mij despite its weary condition because he had to leave for the airport soon.
- I was rushed through to it by infuriated officials. Luckily, the seat booked for me was at the extreme front. I covered the floor around my feet with newspapers, rang for the air hostess, and gave her a parcel of fish (for Mij) to keep in a cool place. took her into my confidence about the events of the last half hour.
(i) Why were the airport officials infuriated?
(ii) How did the narrator take the airhostess into his confidence?
(iii) Why did the author feel lucky?
(iv) Why did the author give fish to the airhostess?
(i) The airport officials were infuriated as the narrator arrived at the nick of time when the flight was about to leave.
(ii) The narrator confided to the airhostess about the events that had happened in the last half an hour.
(iii) The author felt lucky as his seat was in the extreme front and with Mijbil, and compared to a seat in the middle of the plane it was more convenient for him.
(iv) The author gave fish to the airhostess to be kept as food for Mijbil.
- Mij was out of the box in a flash. He disappeared at high speed down the aircraft. There were squawks and shrieks, and a woman stood up on her seat screaming out, ‘A rat! A rat!”
(i) Why did the woman scream?
(ii) What did Mij do?
(iii) How did the atmosphere in the plane change?
(iv) What had Mij been compared with in the extract?
(i) The woman screamed as she thought that there was a rat inside the plane.
(ii) Mijbil came out of the box and disappeared beneath the seats.
(iii) When Mijbil came out the atmosphere changed a he squacked and the passengers shrieked out of fear.
(iv) In the extract, Mij had been compared with a rat.
- Mij and I remained in London for nearly a month. He would play for hours with a selection of toys, ping pong balls, marbles, rubber fruit, and a terrapin shell that I had brought back from his native marshes With the ping-pong ball he invented a game of his own which could keep him engrossed for up to half an hour at a time. A suitcase that I had taken to Iraq had become damaged on the journey home, so that the lid, when closed, remained at a slope from one end to the other.
(i) How did Mij spend his time in London?
(ii) What game was invented by Mij?
(iii) What special trait did Mijbil display?
(iv) What sort of a creature was Mij?
(i) Mij spent his time by playing with his own selection of toys-ping-pong balls, marbles, rubber fruit and a terrapin shell.
(ii) Mij put the ball on one end of the suitcase and ran to catch it when it slid to the other end. This game was invented by him.
(iii) Mijbil displayed high intelligence as he could invent a game.
(iv) Mij was a playful creature who loved sport.
TYPE II: SHORT ANSWER QUESTIONS (30-40 WORDS EACH)
Answer the following questions:
- What ‘experiment’ did Maxwell think Camusfearna would be suitable for?
Ans. The writer had gone to Southern Iraq in the year 1956. He took a fancy to the idea that instead of keeping a dog as a pet, he would aquire an otter Camusfearna was surrounded by water, so it would be an eminently suitable spot for this experiment.
- Why does he go to Basra? How long does he wait there, and why?
Ans. The writer went to Basra in Iraq to collect and answer his mail that had come from Europe. He had to wait there for 5 days as his mail did not arrive.
- How does he get the otter? Does he like it? Pick out the words that tell you this.
Ans. The author’s friend bought the otter for him and sent it to the place where he was staying. After the initial amazement, the author liked it very much. This is evident in the lines, “The second night Mijbil came on to my bed in the small hours and remained asleep in the crook of my knees….” ” I made a body-belt for him…”.
- Why was the otter named ‘Maxwell’s otter’?
Ans. The otter was named by zoologists as Lutrogale Perspicillata Maxwelli. It was a previously unknown species of otters. Hence, it was called Maxwell’s otter in short.
- What happened when Maxwell took Mijbil to the bathroom? What did it do two days after that?
Ans. When the author first took Mijbil to the bathroom, the otter first went wild with joy in the water. He plunged and rolled in it. He jumped up and down the length of the bathtub. He sloshed and splashed about in the water. After two days, the otter suddenly disappeared and went to the bathroom to play in the water and opened the tap to full flow on his own.
- How was Mijbil transported to England?
Ans. As British airlines did not allow pets on board the author had to book a ticket on a different airline from Iraq to Paris and then Paris to London. Thus, Mijbil was packed in a box as the airlines had directed the author.
- What did Mij do to the box?
Ans. The box in which the otter was kept was lined with a metal sheet. Mij didn’t feel comfortable in the box and tried to escape. In his attempt to escape, Mij tore into the metal lining of the box and in the process hurt himself. He had blood over him.
- Why did Maxwell put the otter back in the box? How do you think he felt when he did this?
Ans. As soon as Maxwell removed the remaining lining of the box so that there were no cutting edges left, he found that just ten minutes were left for the flight
to take off. So, in order to reach the airport, he had to put the wretched otter back in the box. Maxwell would have felt pity for the otter’s miserable condition. He must have been feeling bad to put it again in the box, even after finding that it disliked being in the box.
- Why does Maxwell say the airhostess was “the very queen of her kind”?
Ans. The airhostess was quite a generous and helpful lady. She not only allowed the injured otter to be taken inside the plane but also allowed Maxwell to carry it, the way he wanted. She showed a great spirit of cooperation. The way she understood the pain of both the otter and Maxwell, made Maxwell to develop a profound admiration for her. Thus. Maxwell addressed her as “the queen of her kind”, thus referring to her generous heart.
- What happened when the box was opened?
Ans. As soon as the box was opened, Mij leapt out of it and disappeared. It started running all over the plane. The passengers were screaming out of fear. All this created chaos inside the plane. The airhostess suggested to the passengers to stay calm and assured them that she would find the otter. After a while, Mij returned to his owner, climbed on his knee and began to rub its nose on his face and neck.
- What game had Mij invented?
Ans. Mij invented an intelligent game of playing with the ball in a unique way. One of the author’s suitcase was damaged and had a slope on the top part. Mij would put the ball on the high end and run to catch it as it slid to the lower end. He immensely enjoyed playing this game.
- What group of animals do otters belong to?
Ans. Otters belong to a comparatively small group of animals called Mustellines. The other animals of this group are badger, mongoose, weasel, stoat, mink and others. Mijbil was one of the previously unknown variety of otters.
- What guesses did the Londoners make about what Mij was?
Ans. As otters are not found in England so Londoners made the wildest possible guesses about what Mij was. Their guesses ranged from thinking Mij to be a baby seal, or a squirrel, even a hippo and a brontosaurus.
- Why is Mij’s species now known to the world as Maxwell’s otter?
Ans. Maxwell’s otter was of a race previously unknown to science and was at length named by zoologists as Lutrogale Perspicillata Maxwelli. Hence, it is known as Maxwell’s otter in short. Thus it was named after the author, Gavin Maxwell.
- What did the otter look like?
Ans. The otter looked like a small dragon belonging to the middle ages. It was covered with symmetrical pointed scales of mud. One could see between the scales a soft velvet fur like that of a chocolate-brown mole.
- What, according to the writer, is the real play of the otter?
Ans. The real play of an otter is lying on his back and juggling with small objects between his paws. Mijbil would roll two or more marbles up and down on his wide, fat belly. He never dropped one to the floor. Their dexterous and quick movements are a delight to watch.
- Why was the narrator not able to communicate when there was a delay in the arrival of the mail? Ans. The narrator was not able to contact because the telephone lines had to be booked twenty-four hours in advance. On the first day, the line was out of order, on the second day, the exchange was closed for a religious reason; and on the third day, there was a breakdown.
- What was the first characteristic of the otter discovered by the narrator?
Ans. The first thing that the narrator observed about the otter was that he liked to play with water. When he was taken to the bathroom, for half an hour he went wild in the water with joy. He was plunging, jumping and rolling in the water. Soon he started going to the bathroom on his own and even learnt to open the tap to full flow.
- How did Mij spend his time?
Ans. Mij spent most of his time in play. He spent hours shuffling the rubber ball round the room like a four footed soccer player. His real play was when he used to juggle small objects between his paws. Marbles were his favourite toy for his pastime.
- Why was Mij packed inside the box?
Ans. The airlines did not allow animals in the plane. The author booked a flight to London via Paris. Mijbil was to be transported to England and the airlines insisted the narrator to pack him in a box so that he would not scare the other passengers and threaten their safety.
TYPE III: LONG ANSWER QUESTIONS (100-120 WORDS EACH)
Answer the following questions:
- What are ‘compulsive habits’? What does Maxwell say are the compulsive habits of
(i) school children
Ans. Compulsive habits are usually strange acts or behaviour which a person does repeatedly without a clear reason. For example, a cricket player may put on his right shoes first as he believes it would bring him good luck or a kid jumping over a fence, instead of going through the passage way. Usually compulsive behaviour of children are full of childhood mischief and those of adults are of incorrigible type.
(i) As per this story, children must place their feet squarely on the centre of each paving block, must touch every seventh upright of the iron railings, or pass to the outside of every second lamp post.
(ii) Mijbil while on its way to home would jump over the boundary wall railing and run at full speed throughout its length.
- What things does Mij do which tell you that he is an intelligent, friendly and fun-loving animal who needs love?
Ans. Mij invented his own game out of ping-pong ball and a worn down suitcase. He loved water, and once he understood that on opening the tap water came out of it, he would get into the tub and played with water. He had gradually formed a special attachment with Maxwell. It got desperate when Maxwell left it in a box and wanted to come out as soon as possible. He could invent his own games. Earlier he was indifferent to the author but later he started responding to him. Gradually he came to love and obey the author. He showed him affection by nuzzling the author’s face. All these actions of Mijbil clearly indicate that he was a friendly, fun loving and intelligent animal.
- What are some of the things we come to know about otters from this text?
Ans. Otters belong to a small group of animals called Mustellines, shared by badger, mongoose, weasel. stoat, mink and others. They are found in large numbers in marshes. Arabs keep them as pets tame them. Otters love to spread water and splash in it. Maxwell’s otter was of a race previously unknown
to science and was at length named by zoologists Lutrogale Perspicillata Maxwelli. Otters are adorable and intelligent creatures. They can invent games and are playful and boisterous. They love to splash in water and can’t resist it. They are capable of showing great love and affection to their masters. They have great reserves of speed and energy which is difficult to reign in
- Comment on the airhostess whom the author met during the flight.
Ans. The airhostess of the flight was kind and friendly, and she allowed the narrator to place the otter on his lap. She could relate and empathize with the situation faced by the narrator. This shows that apart from being professional, she was a caring lady. She not only wanted to do her job but was also responsible as she helped the narrator in finding the otter. She did all that she could do for Maxwell and the otter. She was hard working and went out of her way to help the narrator in his hour of need. She comes across as a naturally compassionate person who helped the author beyond the call of duty.
- The narrator called the airhostess the queen of her kind. This shows how caring and supportive she was. Do you find such people these days?
Ans. In today’s world, it is getting difficult to find people who show genuine care and support. Rather than helping others, they start giving excuses and quote rules and regulations. Few people think about the situation faced by others and helped others in all possible ways.
This is changing because of the change in the values of the people. They give first priority to their own safety and security. They care for themselves first and then think about others. The airhostess of the flight was kind and friendly, and she allowed the narrator to place the otter on his lap. She could relate and empathize with the situation faced by the narrator. This shows that apart from being professional, she was a caring lady. She not only wanted to do her job but was also responsible as she helped the narrator in finding the otter.
- Why do you think the otter was not friendly at first with the narrator? Can you relate this to the human nature as well?
Ans. At first, the otter was not very friendly with the narrator as he had seen him for the first time. He was brought to a new place and new surroundings. He neither knew the narrator nor the place which made him à stay away from the narrator. But, as soon as he started becoming comfortable with the surroundings, he became friendly and came close to the narrator.
This is very similar to the human nature. Human beings first take time to understand others and then only become friendly with them. Unless they are comfortable in being with somebody, they try to stay away from that person.
- Bringing Mijbil was a life changing experience for the author. Discuss.
Ans. Bringing Mijbil was truly a life changing experience for the author. After his earlier indifference to the author, Mij gradually became quite close to the author. He invented his own game out of ping-pong ball and a worn down suitcase, which delighted and amazed the author. He loved water, and once he understood that on opening the tap water came out of it, he would get into the tub and played with water. He had gradually formed a special attachment with Maxwell. It got desperate when Maxwell left it in a box and wanted to come out as soon as possible. He could invent his own games. Earlier he was indifferent to the author but later he started responding to him. Gradually he came to love and obey the author. He showed him affection by nuzzling the author’s face. All these actions of Mijbil brought a lot of love in the author’s life.
- The account by Gavin Maxwell gives a message of loving animals. Comment.
Ans. This account of the author and his love for his pet Mijbil is a heartwarming narrative which conveys the strong bond the author felt for his pet otter named Mijbil. Earlier, he was indifferent to the author but later, he started responding to him. Gradually, he came to loves and obey the author. Mijbil showed him great affection by nuzzling the author’s face. The author loves the games Mijbil invented and observed with delight and surprise his dexterity in playing games. He recounts with pleasure and fondness how Mijbil behaved like a cute, adorable child, when he learnt how to open the bathroom tap. He took great pleasure in splashing the water and had boundless energy. Maxwell was a naturalist and his love of animals comes across strongly in the chapter.
- Describe the commotion that Mijbil caused in the flight.
Ans. The author wished to go to London and take Mijbil with him. As British airlines did not allow pets on board the author had to book a ticket on a different airline from Iraq to Paris and then Paris to London. Thus, Mijbil was packed in a box as the airlines had directed the author. While on the flight, as soon as his box was opened. Mijbil ran out. Then it ran all over the place scaring all the passengers. It created a chaos and most of the people in the plane got scared. There
was much screaming and squaking. The airhostess requested the passengers to stay calm and assured them that she would find the otter. After a while, Mijbil returned to his owner, climbed on his knee and unaware of the commotion that he had caused, began to rub its nose on the author’s face and neck.
- Mijbil’s traits and behaviour were quite similar to humans. Comment.
Ans. Mijbil’s traits and behaviour were really quite similar to humans. In fact he was like a small child who was very lovable and playful. Earlier, he was indifferent to the author but later, he started responding to him. Gradually, he came to love and obey the author. Mijbil showed him great affection by nuzzling the author’s face. The author love the games Mijbil invented and observed with delight and surprise his dexterity in playing games. Mijbil behaved like a cute, adorable child, when he learnt how to open the bathroom tap. He took great pleasure in splashing the water and had boundless energy. He loved water, and once he understood that on opening the tap water came out of it, he would get into the tub and played with water. He invented his own games and spent quite some time playing on his own. Children too show such traits of playfulness and affection. Thus it can be said that Mijbil was quite similar to humans in terms of traits and behaviour.
- The author gives a delightful account of the Antics of Mijbil. Do you agree?
Ans. It is true that the author gives us a delightful account of the antics of Mijbil. After his earlier indifference to the author, Mij gradually became quite close to him. He invented his own game out of ping-pong ball and a worn down suitcase, which delighted and amazed the author. He loved water, and once he understood that on opening the tap water came out of it, he would get into the tub and played with water. He had gradually formed a special attachment with Maxwell. When the author wished to go to London and take Mijbil with him. Mijbil had to be packed in a box as the airlines had directed the author. While on the flight, as soon as his box was opened, Mijbil ran out. Then it ran all over the place scaring all the passengers. It created a chaos and most of the people in the plane got scared. There was much screaming and squaking. The airhostess requested the passengers to stay calm and assured them that she would find the otter. After a while, Mijbil returned to his owner, climbed on his knee and unaware of the commotion that he had caused, began to rub its nose on the author’s face and neck. His antics are truly delightful to read.
QUESTIONS FOR PRACTICE
- What problem did the author face in taking Mijbil to London?
- What made Mijbil bleed in the box?
- What did Maxwell feel when he had to put the blood spattered Mijbil back in his box?
- What do you think about the airhostess whom the author met in the flight to London?
- Describe Mijbil’s love for water.