NCERT Solutions

Class 10 english

mijbil the otter
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Thinking about text:

1. What things does Mij do which tell you that he is an intelligent, friendly and fun-loving animal who needs love?
2. What are some of the things we come to know about otters from this text?
3. Why is Mij’s species now known to the world as Maxwell’s otter?
4. Maxwell in the story speaks for the otter, Mij. He tells us what the otter feels and thinks on different occasions. Given below are some things the otter does. Complete the column on the right to say what Maxwell says about
what Mij feels and thinks.

What Mij does How Mij feels or thinks
plunges, rolls in the water and makes the water splosh and splash
Screws the tap in the wrong way
Nuzzles Maxwell’s face and neck in the aeroplane

5. Read the story and find the sentences where Maxwell describes his pet otter. Then choose and arrange your sentences to illustrate those statements below that you think are true. Maxwell’s description
(i) makes Mij seem almost human, like a small boy.
(ii) shows that he is often irritated with what Mij does.
(iii) shows that he is often surprised by what Mij does.
(iv) of Mij’s antics is comical.
(v) shows that he observes the antics of Mij very carefully.
(vi) shows that he thinks Mij is a very ordinary otter.
(vii) shows that he thinks the otter is very unusual.

Answers:

1.Mij was an intelligent animal. It invented its own game out of the ping-pong balls. It screwed the tap till water began to flow and then it would play and splash in the water. Though it was aloof and indifferent in the beginning, it soon became very friendly. It formed a special attachment with Maxwell. It responded when Maxwell called out his name. It grew desperate when Maxwell left it in a box and it got hurt while trying to come out of it. It was a fun-loving animal. It enjoyed playing all kinds of games. It would play with a selection of toys, ping-pong balls, marbles, rubber fruit, and a terrapin shell.
2.Otters belong to a comparatively small group of animals called Mustellines, shared by the badger, mongoose, weasel, stoat, mink and others. Maxwell's otter was of a race previously unknown to science and was at length named by zoologists Lutrogale perspicillata maxwelli or Maxwell's otter. They are found in large numbers in marshes. They are often tamed by the Arabs. It is characteristic of otters that every drop of water must be extended and spread about the place; a bowl must at once be overturned, or, if it would not be overturned, be sat in and splashed in until it overflowed. For them, water must be kept on the move. Otters love playing various games, especially with a ball.
3.Maxwell's otter was of a race previously unknown to science and was at length named by zoologists Lutrogale perspicillata maxwelli or Maxwell's otter.

What Mij does How Mij feels or thinks
plunges, rolls in the water and makes the water splosh and splash Went wild with joy
Screws the tap in the wrong way irritated and disappointed
Nuzzles Maxwell’s face and neck in the aeroplane distressed chitter of recognition and welcome

5. (i)He spent most of his time playing .
(iii) l watched, amazed; in less than a minute he had turned the tap far enough to produce a trickle of water, and after a moment or two achieved the full flow.
(v) 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. Mij discovered that if he placed the ball on the high end it would run down the length of the suitcase. He would dash around to the other end to ambush its arrival, hide from it, crouching, to spring up and take it by surprise, grab it and trot off with it to the high end once more.
(vii) lt is not, I suppose, in any way strange that the average Londoner should not recognize an otter, but the variety of guesses as to what kind of animal this might be came as a surprise to me. Mij was anything but an otter.

Thinking about Language :

I. Describing a Repeated Action in the Past From the table below, make as many correct sentences as you can using would and/or used to, as appropriate. (Hint: First decide whether the words in italics show an action, or a state or situation, in the past.) Then add two or three sentences of your own to it.

Emperor Akbar Be fond of musical evenings.
Every evening we Take long walks on the beach.
Fifty years ago, very few people Would Used to own cars
Till the 1980s, Shanghai have very dirty streets
My uncle spends his holidays by the sea

Answer:

  • Emperor Akbar used to be fond of musical evenings.
  • Every evening we used to take long walks on the beach.
  • Fifty years ago, very few people used to own cars.
  • Till the 1980s, Shangai used to have very dirty streets.
  • My uncle would spend his holiday by the sea.
  • My uncle used to take long walks on the beach.
  • My uncle used to be fond of musical evenings.

II. Noun Modifiers

1. Look at these examples from the text, and say whether the modifiers (in italics) are nouns, proper nouns, or adjective plus noun.

Answer:

  • An otter fixation - noun
  • The iron railings- noun
  • The Tigris marshes- proper noun
  • The London streets- proper noun
  • soft velvet fur- adjective plus noun
  • A four-footed soccer player- adjective plus noun

2. Given below are some nouns, and a set of modifiers (in the box). Combine the nouns and modifiers to make as many appropriate phrases as you can. (Hint: The nouns and modifiers are all from the texts in this book.)
temple three girls triangle dresses
person thoughts boys roar
gifts scream farewell
time subject landscape handkerchief
crossing flight chatterbox profession
physique coffee view celebration

Answer:

  • Temple- white temple, stone temple, first temple
  • Person- incorrigible person, ridiculous person
  • Gifts- hundred gifts, ordinary gifts, birthday gifts
  • Time- college time, rough time, first time
  • Crossing- railroad crossing, first crossing
  • Physique- plump physique, ordinary physique
  • Three girls- first three girls, incorrigible three girls
  • Thoughts- incorrigible thoughts, heart breaking thoughts, uncomfortable thoughts, ridiculous thoughts, first thoughts, ordinary thoughts
  • Scream- tremendous scream, loud scream
  • Subject- college subject, first subject, ordinary subject
  • Flight- first flight, rough flight
  • Coffee- invigorating coffee, ordinary coffee
  • Triangle- love triangle
  • Boys- college boys, incorrigible boys, rough boys, hundred boys
  • Farewell- heartbreaking farewell, college farewell
  • Landscape- bare landscape, white landscape, rough landscape
  • Chatterbox- incorrigible chatterbox
  • View- tremendous view, panoramic view, ordinary view

III.
1. Match the words on the left with a word on the right. Some words on the left can go with more than one word on the right.

Answer:

  1. a portion of – fried fish
  2. a pool of – blood
  3. flakes of – snow
  4. a huge heap of – stones
  5. a gust of – wind
  6. little drops of – water
  7. a piece of – cotton
  8. a pot of – gold

2. Use a bit of/a piece of/a bunch of/a cloud of/a lump of with the italicised nouns in the following sentences. The first has been done for you as an example.

  1. My teacher gave me some advice.
  2. Can you give me some clay,please.
  3. The information you gave was very useful.
  4. Because of these factories, smoke hangs over the city.
  5. Two stones rubbed together can produce sparks of fire.
  6. He gave me some flowers on my birthday.

Answer:

  1. My teacher gave me a bit of advice.
  2. Can you give me a lump of clay,please.
  3. The piece of information you gave was very useful.
  4. Because of these factories,a cloud smoke hangs over the city.
  5. Two pieces of stones rubbed together can produce sparks of fire.
  6. He gave me a bunch of flowers on my birthday.