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Honeydew Chapter 1 The Best Christmas Present In The World | The Ant And The Cricket
  • NCERT Solution For Class 8 English Honeydew

    The Best Christmas Present In The World | The Ant And The Cricket Here is the CBSE English Chapter 1 for Class 8 students. Summary and detailed explanation of the lesson, including the definitions of difficult words. All of the exercises and questions and answers from the lesson's back end have been completed. NCERT Solutions for Class 8 English The Best Christmas Present In The World | The Ant And The Cricket Chapter 1 NCERT Solutions for Class 8 English The Best Christmas Present In The World | The Ant And The Cricket Chapter 1 The following is a summary in Hindi and English for the academic year 2021-2022. You can save these solutions to your computer or use the Class 8 English.

    Question 1

    What did the author find in a junk shop?


    The author discovered a roll-top desk in the junk shop in the early 19th century. It was in very poor shape. It's been produced from oak. Several parts broke the roll-top. One of the legs was mended mischievously and one side had scorch marks all down.

    Question 2

    What did he find in a secret drawer? Who do you think had put it in there?


    In a secret drawer, he found a small black tin box. Mrs. Macpherson's wife of Jim had placed it in there. Name and address were inside the box on the envelope here.

    Question 3

    Who had written the letter, to whom, and when?


    On December 26, 1914, Jim Macpherson wrote a letter to his wife, Connie Macpherson, fighting a war against the Germans.

    Question 4

    Why was the letter written - what was the wonderful thing that had happened?


    On the morning of Christmas, Fritz invited Tommies to the no man's land for the Christmas party. They forgot their enmity and ate sausages that day, drank rum, and together they played football. They exchanged carols for Christmas at night. Jim wrote the letter telling his spouse about his incident.

    Question 5

    What jobs did Hans Wolf and Jim Macpherson have when they were not soldiers?


    In an orchestra, Hans Wolf used to play cello, while Jim was a Dorset school teacher.

    Question 6

    Had Hans Wolf ever been to Dorset? Why did he say he knew it?


    No, Dorset had never been to Hans Wolf. He said so because in his school and in English books he had learned everything about England.

    Question 7

    Do you think Jim Macpherson came back from the war? How do you know this?


    No, Jim Macpherson never came back from the war.
    It was published in the self-taped notepaper that the letter was Jim's last letter. He did not obtain any letters from Connie Macpherson. It shows the demise of Jim Macpherson. The event occurred around the previous portion of World War I in which the Germans were victorious, implying British defeat and Jim Macpherson's demise.

    Question 8

    Why did the author go to Bridport?


    In search of Mrs. Connie Macpherson, the author came to Bridport to return a letter to her as the address on the document was the address where Mrs. Macpherson resided.

    Question 9

    How old was Mrs Macpherson now? Where was she?


    Mrs Macpherson was now 101. She was nursing home at Burlington House.

    Question 10

    Who did Connie Macpherson think her visitor was?


    Connie Macpherson thought her husband, Mr. Jim Macpherson, was her visitor.

    Question 11

    Which sentence in the text shows that the visitor did not try to hide his identity?


    The sentence-' I've explained about the desk, I've found it about to do, but I don't think she's listening. ' shows the visitor hasn't tried to conceal his identity.

    Question 12

    For how long do you think Connie had kept Jim’s letter? Give reasons for your answer.


    Connie has had to keep Jim's letter for nearly 70 to 75 years for a long time. That's because she told the narrator how she reads it very often every day so she could feel Jim was close to her.

    Question 13

    Why do you think the desk had been sold, and when?


    When the house got fire and the desk got severely burnt, the desk had to be sold. Mrs Macpherson had to have sold all the brunt-up stuff when she left the location to live in the nursing home in Burlington House.

    Question 14

    Why do Jim and Hans think that games or sports are good ways of resolving conflicts? Do you agree?


    Jim and Hans agreed that games and sports are good ways to resolve conflicts because sports don't kill any soldier, make kids orphaned, and don't make wives widows. No one is dying in games. It will also improve friendship and resolve disputes without bloodshed. Wars only lead to destruction and death.

    Question 15

    Do you think the soldiers of the two armies are like each other, or different from each other? Find evidence from the story to support your answer.


    The two armies ' soldiers have been like each other and they're no distinct at all. Some cases from the tale are to be proved below:
    (i) They both wanted peace, they wanted the war to end, and they wanted to go home to meet their families.
    (ii) The two armies were celebrating Christmas and wishing each other Merry Christmas.
    (iii) The two armies shared each other's sausages, schnapps and Christmas cake.
    (iv) They played a football game and shared Christmas carols at night, hoping to come back together with the families.

    Question 16

    Mention the various ways in which the British and the German soldiers become friends and find things in common at Christmas.


    The Germans first wished the British soldiers Happy Christmas. Then they asked for a party with their schnapps and sausages at the no-man's-land. The British reacted to this very beautifully and positively. They've agreed. They also spoke about Bathsheba, Sergeant Troy, Gabriel Oak, and Dorset. Thus the two armies ' troops become friends. They shared together schnapps, rum sausages and Christmas cake. In addition, at night they exchanged carols and played a soccer game.

    Question 17

    What is Connie's Christmas present? Why is it 'the best Christmas present in the world'?


    She mistook him for her boyfriend Jim when the narrator went to see Connie and gave her the box. She believed for Christmas Jim had come home. This was the Christmas present for Connie. For her, it was the world's greatest Christmas gift because Jim wrote in the letter that on Christmas he would come back.

    Question 18

    Do you think the title of this story is suitable for it? Can you think of any other tiles?


    The story's name is perfectly suited to it as the story revolves around the letter that turns out to be Mrs Macpherson's greatest Christmas gift in the globe. Mrs Macpherson wrote on the letter's envelope the date and her wish to bury this letter with her after her death. She had lost it, but she eventually discovered it and discovered her husband Jim again in its shape. No other title can be appropriate for this tale.

    Question 19

    1. Look at these sentences from the story.
    I spotted it in a junk shop in Bridport... The man said it was made in the early nineteenth century… This one was in bad condition…

    The italicised verbs are in the past tense. They tell us what happened in the past, before now.

    (i) Read the passage below and underline the verbs in the past tense.

    A man got on the train and sat down. The compartment was empty except for one lady. She took her gloves off. A few hours later the police arrested the man. They held him for 24 hours and then freed him.

    (ii) Now look at these sentences.

    The veneer had lifted almost everywhere. Both fire and water had taken their toll on this desk.

    Notice the verb forms had lifted, had taken (their toll).

    The author found and bought the desk in the past.

    The desk was damaged before the author found it and bought it.

    Fire and water had damaged the desk before the author found it and bought it.

    We use verb forms like had damaged for an event in the ‘earlier past’. If there are two events in the past, we use the ‘had…’ form for the event that occurred first in the past.

    We also use the past perfect tense to show that something was wished for, or expected before a particular time in the past. For example, I had always wanted one…

    Discuss with your partner the difference in meaning in the sentences below. When I reached the station, the train left. When I reached the station, the train had left.

    When I reached the station, the train left.

    When I reached the station, the train had left

    (i) A man got on the train and sat down. The compartment was empty except for one lady. She took her gloves off. A few hours later the police arrested the man. They held him for 24 hours and then freed him.
    (ii) In the first sentence: The train left when I reached the station [I saw it leaving]. Whereas in the second sentence:
    The train had already left before I reached the station [I didn't see it was leaving].
    Question 21

    Underline the verbs and arrange them in two columns, Past and Earlier past.
    (a) My friends set out to see the caves in the next town, but I stayed at home, because I had seen them already.

    (b) When they arrived at the station, their train had left. They came back home, but by that time I had gone out to see a movie!

    (c) So they sat outside and ate the lunch I had packed for them.

    (d) By the time I returned, they had fallen asleep!

    (a) Stayed, had seen
    (b) arrived, had left, came, had gone
    (c) sat, ate, had packed
    (d) returned, had fallen

    Past Earlier past
    (i) stayed (i) had seen
    (ii) arrived (ii) had left
    (iii) came (iii) had gone
    (iv) sat (iv) had packed
    (v) ate (v) had fallen
    (vi) returned  
    Question 22

    By the end of the journey, we had run out of drinking water.
    Look at the verb run out of in this sentence. It is a phrasal verb: it has two parts, a verb and a preposition or an adverb. Phrasal verbs often have meanings that are different from the meanings of their parts.
    Find these phrasal verbs in the story.
    burn out  light up   look on    run out      keep out
    Write down the sentences in which they occur. Consult a dictionary and write down the meaning that you think matches the meaning of the phrasal verb in the sentence.


    (i) burn out
    House Number 12 turned out to be nothing but a burnt-out shell.
    (ii) light up
    That was the moment her eyes lit up with recognition and her face became suffused with a sudden glow of happiness.
    (iii) look on
    Hans Wolf and I looked on and cheered, clapping our hands and stamping our feet, to keep out the cold as much as anything.
    (iv) run out
    When the game was finished, the schnapps and the rum and the sausage had long since run out and we knew it was all over.
    (v) keep out
    You just keep out of this quarrel. (Stay away)

    Question 24

    The table below contains a list of nouns and some adjectives. Use as many adjectives as you can to describe each noun. You might come up with some funny descriptions!

    Nouns Adjectives
    elephant circular, striped, enormous, multicoloured, round, cheerful, wild, blue, red, chubby, large, medium-sized, cold

    Elephant: Huge elephant, cheerful elephant, wild elephant, medium-sized elephant, big elephant.
    Face: Circular faces, huge faces, multicolored faces, striped faces, rounded faces, cheerful faces, wild faces, red faces, chubby faces, large faces, cold faces.
    Building: Circular buildings, huge building, multicolored building, round building, blue building, red building, big building, medium building, brick building.
    Water: Pool water, huge water, colorful water, cold water, blue water, red water.
    Question 25

    In groups discuss whether wars are a good way to end conflicts between countries. Then present your arguments to the whole class.


    Wars are certainly not a good medium to end conflict between nations at all, as they lead to no alternatives except for the amount of murdered sodiers, orphaned kids and widow husbands. Man is a social animal that enjoys living in a community. If there is any dispute between them, He solves it either legally or through debate. But if disputes arise between two nations, only wars will solve them. Why? Why can't you find any other alternatives? We have the brain, the leaders do likewise. They are individuals who are civilized and trained. Conflicts can be resolved by speaking or apologizing to each other. Wars lead to enmity and leave a gulf between the two countries that will never be filled. Therefore wars should be prevented. 

    Question 26

    What kind of presents do you like and why? What are the things you keep in mind when you buy presents for others? Discuss with your partner. (For example, you might buy a book because it can be read and re-read over a period of time.)


    If I have to pick my own gifts. I'd go to sports kit and books. Books are the best friends of one. Knowledge and information can be read and re-read and disseminated. Reading books is enjoyable. There can be different types of books. They may be comic books, books of stories, books of literature, books of poetry, etc. Depending on the taste, there are many kinds of books that you can choose from. They're never getting old or obsolete. Moreover, the knowledge they gain is never lost or forgotten.
    Apart from books, sports kit is also one of my greatest gifts as sports keeps me fit and healthy physically. And since there is a saying, 'a healthy body has a good mind,' you can discover any issue if you are physically powerful.
    I'd buy a football if I had to pick a gift for my friend. He loves football and is also a very nice player in football.

    Question 27

    Suppose you are the visitor. You are in a dilemma. You don't know whether to disclose your identity and disappoint the old lady or let her believe that her dear Jim has come back. Write a letter to a friend highlighting your anxiety, fears and feelings.


    Dear Aashu
    I want to share an event today that upsets me day and night. I bought a roll-top desk from a junk shop just a few days ago. I found a letter written by her husband Jim, who was an army officer and fought the war against Germany during the First World War, addressed to Mrs Macpherson in his drawer. He outlined in that letter an event that occurred on the afternoon of Christmas. During the war, the Germans invited the British to the Christmas party on the territory of no man. The party was liked by all the troops from both armies and played football. Everyone was longing for the end of the war and going home. This letter had a strip attached to Mrs Macpherson's envelope that said, 'Jim's last letter, Won January 25, 1915. To be buried with me when the time comes. 'These lines forced me to search for Mrs. Macpherson and return the letter. I went to the address provided and discovered that she now lives in nursing home in Burlington House and is 101 years old. It was the morning of Christmas that filled the eyes with happiness and looked back at me. She kissed my cheek, asked me to sit next to her, offered me tea and cake for Christmas that couldn't say anything. Now I'm in a state of disappointment with the woman that her husband is dead or has returned as promised in the letter.I'm afraid she will definitely die of shock and disappointment if I reveal my identity. And if I didn't live in guilt then. What am I supposed to do? Suggest me, please.
    Your friend

    Question 28

    Given below is the outline of a story. Construct the story using the outline.
    A young, newly married doctor _______________ freedom fighter _______________ exiled to the Andaman and Nicobar Islands by the British _______________ infamous Cellular Jail _______________ prisoners tortured _______________ revolt by inmates _______________ doctor hanged _______________ wife waits for his return _______________ becomes old _______________ continues to wait with hope and faith.


    There was a young doctor, freshly married, living in a tiny town. In the city he practiced medicine and was very pleased. But a few British soldiers went to his house one day and captured him calling him a fighter for liberty. They banished him to the notorious Cellular Jail on the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. The wife continued to ask the authorities about her husband's status, but all in vain. She was unable to create them think that her husband was a straightforward doctor, not a fighter for liberty. The British tortured and violently beat the inmates there in the jail. The prisoners revolted one day. They were captured by the police and hanged. Also among them was the doctor. The wife was still waiting for justice and returning to her husband. She grew old and still waits with hope and faith after independence. She's 103 years old.

    Question 29

    The cricket says, “Oh! what will become of me?” When does he say it, and why?


    When the winters arrived, the cricket said so, and he discovered no food to eat. He said so because there was nothing to eat and he was hungry.

    Question 30

    Find in the poem the lines that mean the same as “Neither a borrower nor a lender be” (Shakespeare).


    'But we never borrow the ants ; we never borrow the ants.'

    Question 31

    What is your opinion of the ant’s principles?


    The principles of Ant are entirely correct. Those who don't believe in the future can never succeed in life. And if they are helped over and over again, they will never learn a lesson.

    Ant has the capacity to predict, and that is why they are saving for the future. They don't borrow from anyone and don't even lend to anyone.

    Question 32

    The ant tells the cricket to “dance the winter away”. Do you think the word ‘dance’ is appropriate here? If so, why?


    The ant is telling the cricket to dance away from the winter. She used the sarcastic word ' dance. ' She told the cricket to take as light and enjoyable a winter as he dances.

    Question 33

    Which lines in the poem express the poet's comment? Read them aloud.


    People are calling this fable. I'm going to justify it ; some crickets have four legs and some have two legs.

    Question 34

    Write the comment in your own words.


    Those who are living today and thinking for tomorrow are succeeding in life. While enjoying your current life, save your future.

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