Rbse Solutions for Class 11 English Snapshots Chapter 8 The Tale of Melon City

NCERT Solutions for Class 11 English Snapshots Chapter 8 The Tale of Melon City(updated)

Class11
SubjectEnglish
BookSnapshot
Chapter Number8
Chapter NameThe Tale of Melon City

The Tale of Melon City NCERT Solutions for Class 11 English Snapshots Chapter 8

The Tale of Melon City NCERT Text Book Questions and Answers

The Tale of Melon City Reading with insight

Question 1.
Narrate ‘The Tale of Melon City’ in your own words.
Answer:
The ruler of the City State pretended to be justice loving and gentle. (But he was brainless and dispolite) Once he ordered a grand city gate to be built over the main road. He gave out that he wanted the moral improvement of all the spectators. One day the King rode out along that thoroughfare. His crown hit against the low arch and fell off his head. He took it as a disgrace of the crown. He ordered the guilty to be hanged.

He first summoned the chief of builders to pay for his fault. The builder chief passed on the blame to workers who blamed the wrong sized bricks. The King sent for the masons who put the blame on the architect. The planner said in self defence that the King himself had made bad correction in the original plan.

A noose was set up. But it was somewhat high. Only the King was found tall enough to fit the noose. He was hanged. As per custom, the new king was named by an idiot who was the first to pass by the road. He named ‘A Melon’ and the melon, looking fool was crowned king.

Question 2.
What impression would you form of a State where the King was ‘just and placid’ ?
Answer:
It was a small city ruled by a mindless King. He could not make any sensible decision on his own. He called himself just and gentle. When actually he was a duffer. He thought that the new city gate would enlighten the onlookers. He lost his head when he lost his crown.

He wanted somebody to be hanged because the common people demanded it. But he could not fix the guilt. He himself was finally executed because he was tall enough to fit the noose. The new ruler was worse than the ex-ruler. He appeared like a melon because an idiot had suggested and named him It was a Kingdom of fools.

Question 3.
How, according to you, can peace and liberty be maintained in a State ?
Answer:
A ruler’s first and premost responsibility is to maintain law and order in the state. The masses demand peace and basic freedom of faith as well as expression. They become restive and take to violence if the ruler foolishly or cruelly and in an arbitrary planner. Only rule of law and impartial judiciary can keep people happy as well as contented.

Question 4.
Suggest a few instances in the poem which highlight humour and irony.
Answer:
The Tale of Melon City tells a humorous story in verse. It has no moral or message. It, however, highlights the fact that a non sensical ruler can make the masses miserable. Nobody is safe in such a state where the King goes by his whims. Such an idiot ruler pays a heavy price with his own life.

It was ironical that the brainless and indecisive ruler called himself just and placid or gentle. He built the city gate for the moral improvement of the road users. When his crown was thrown off his head, he decided to hang somebody. The person finally ‘chosen on the basis of his height. The ministers followed the custom mindlessly. They executed the King as per Royal decree. The selected the melon-like new King on the suggestion of an idiot. Thus all the situations, decisions and actions are ironic or ridiculous.

Question 5.
The Tale of Melon City has been narrated in a verse form. This is a unique style which lends extra charm to an ancient tale. Find similar examples in your language.
Answer:
The following poem narrates the legend of an old lady who angered Saint Peter because of her greed. Let’s read it :

A Legend of the Northland

Away, away in the Northland,
Where the hours of the day are few,
And the nights are so long in winter
That they cannot sleep them through;

Where they harness the swift reindeer
To the sledges, when it snows;
And the children took like bear’s cubs
In their funny, furry clothes;

They tell them a curious story
I don’t believe ’tis true;
And yet you may learn a lesson
If I tell the tale to you.

Once, when the good Saint Peter ,
Lived in to world below,
And walked about it, preaching,
Just as he did, you know,

He came to the door of a cottage,
In travelling round to earth,
Where a little woman was making cakes.
And backing them on the hearth;

And being faint with fasting,
For. the day was almost done,
He asked her, from her store of cakes,
To give him a single one.

So she made a veiy little cake,
But as it baking lay,
She looked at it, and thought it seemed
Too large to give away.

Therefore she kneaded another,
And still a smaller one;i
But it looked, when she turned it over,
As large as the first had done.

Then she took a tiny scrap of dough,
And rolled and rolled it flat;
And baked it thin as a wafer
But she couldn’t part with that.

For she said, “My cakes that seem too small
When I eat of them myself
And yet too large to give away.”
So she put them on the shelf.

Then good Saint Peter grew angry,
For he was hungry and faint;
And surely such a woman
Was enough to provoke a saint.

And he said, “You are far too selfish
To dwell in a human form,
To have both food and shelter,
And fire to keep you warm.

Now, you shall build as the birds do,
Ans shall get your scanty food
By boring, and boring, and boring,
All day in the hard, dry wood.”

Then up she went through the chimney,
Never speaking a word, ‘
And out of the top few a woodpecker,
For she was changed to a bird.

She had a scarlet cap on the head,
And what was left the same;
But all the rest of her clothes were burned
Black as a coal in the flame.

And every country schoolboy
Has seen her in the wood,
Where she lives in the trees till this very day,
Boring and borings for food.

Page No 76:

Question 1:

Narrate ‘The Tale of Melon City’ in your own words.

ANSWER:

A model answer has been provided for students’ reference.

It is strongly recommended that students prepare the answer on their own.

The Tale of Melon city is a narrative poem by Vikram Seth written in the couplet form. The poem is an account of an incident involving the monarch and citizens that took place in a city long ago. The tale is humorous with a very sharp focus on the thematic aspect. Structurally, the story has three parts-the first part mentions about a king’s wish to build an arch. The second part relates his complaints regarding the faulty construction of the arch and the last part narrates how his decree ultimately falls on him leading to his hanging. The poem in a high tone of humour narrates the transition of power from the king to a melon which became a symbolic head.


In the beginning the poet narrates that there was a king in a city long ago. One day the king expressed his desire to construct an arch spanning the main thoroughfare to improve the onlookers morally and mentally. The king was just and peace loving. The construction work was soon undertaken by employing large number of labourers.

After the completion of the arch, the king went to inspect the newly constructed arch. The arch was very low. His crown struck against the arch and fell off. Feeling dishonoured, the king decided to hang the chief of builders. All arrangements were made for the hanging. The Chief of builders defended himself by shifting the responsibility to the labourers. Convinced by the argument, the king then ordered to hang all the labourers. The labourers shifted the responsibility to the size of the bricks. The king accordingly ordered the hanging of the masons. The masons in turn defended themselves and put all blame on the architect. The king ordered to hang the architect. The architect reminded the king that he (King) had made some amendments to the plan when it was shown to him. The architect indirectly put the blame on the king. The king was confused to hear the architect’s argument. The king solicited the advice of the wisest man in his kingdom. Accordingly, the wisest man was found and brought to the court. He was so old that he could neither walk nor see. He gave the verdict that the arch was the real culprit. It was the arch that hit the crown violently and it fell off. So, the arch must be hanged. Accordingly, the arch was led to the scaffold. In the meantime, a councillor pointed out that it would be very shameful act to hang the arch that touched the king’s crown.

The crowd which gathered there to witness the hanging of the culprit was getting restless. Sensing their mood, the king said that someone must be hanged since the nation wanted a hanging. The noose was set up. It was somewhat high. Each man was measured turn by turn. But there was only one man who was tall enough to fit in the noose, and it was the King. Interestingly, the king was hanged.

The poet then narrates the third part of the poem. In the concluding part the ministers heaved a sigh of relief that they were able to find someone, otherwise, the unruly crowd might have risen in revolt. After the death of the King, it was required to choose another king. As per the convention, the ministers sent out the herald to proclaim that the next to pass the City Gate would choose a king. An idiot happened to pass the City Gate. The guards asked him who was to be the King. The idiot answered that a melon should be chosen to be the next king. Actually that was his pet answer to all questions as he liked melons. The ministers crowned a melon and placed their Melon King reverently at the throne.

The poet narrates that the citizens were least bothered about their symbolic head. They enjoyed the principles of Laissez faire. They were very respectful to their new monarch as the new monarch did not interfere in their lives.

Page No 76:

Question 2:

What impression would you form of a state where the King was ‘just and placid’?

ANSWER:

A model answer has been provided for students’ reference.

It is strongly recommended that students prepare the answer on their own.

A state where the king was Just and placid enjoyed peace, liberty and justice. The king was titular and symbolic. The citizens enjoyed freedom of all kinds. The real governance of the country was in the hands of the citizens. In the poem ‘The Tale of a Melon City’ the king had to be hanged as the citizens ultimately wanted someone to be hung. The king could not defend himself. Even though the wisest man gave the verdict that the arch was the real culprit but the citizens wanted someone to be hanged. Ultimately, the king was hanged. This shows that in such a state where the king was just and placid the citizens influenced the fate of a king.

Page No 76:

Question 3:

How, according to you, can peace and liberty be maintained in a state?

ANSWER:

A model answer has been provided for students’ reference.

It is strongly recommended that students prepare the answer on their own.

Peace and liberty can be maintained in a state if there exists Laissez faire, i.e., the principle of non interference by the king in the activities of the citizens. However, the king or the government must maintain law and order in the absence of which anarchy may reign in the state. There should be a happy balance between state interference and citizens rights. Only then one can expect peace and liberty to be maintained in a state.

Page No 76:

Question 4:

Suggest a few instances in the poem which highlight humour and irony.

ANSWER:

A model answer has been provided for students’ reference.

It is strongly recommended that students prepare the answer on their own.

The poet has used the tools of humour and irony in the poem. Humour refers to cognitive experiences which provoke laughter in a person. Irony refers to the strange aspect of a situation that is very different from what one expects. Some instances of humour and irony in the poem are:

The decision of the king to hang the chief of the builders for constructing a low arch when his crown struck against it evokes laughter among the readers. It is an example of humour. The way the king got convinced that actually the labourers who constructed the arch were responsible is also humourous. The king wanted to hang the labourers but the labourers were able to defend themselves. This situation is humorous as it evokes laughter among the readers and ironic as the readers find that the labourers are able to shift the responsibility to the architect. Ironically, the architect is able to shift the responsibility to the king himself. The selection of the wisest man who would give the verdict as to who was the real culprit evokes laughter and is, therefore, humorous. The old man ultimately blamed the arch and declared that the arch must be hanged. Ironically, one of the ministers pointed out that the gathering wanted a man to be hanged. As the noose fitted the king’s neck, so, he was hanged.

The choice of a successor is humorous as an idiot is consulted in selecting the successor. The idiot chose a melon who became the symbolic head of the state.

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ट्रेन के बीच में ही AC कोच क्यों लगाए जाते हैं? Rbse books for class 1 to 12 hindi medium 2021-22
ट्रेन के बीच में ही AC कोच क्यों लगाए जाते हैं? Rbse books for class 1 to 12 hindi medium 2021-22