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NCERT Textbook: The Cop & The Anthem | NCERT Textbooks & Solutions for Class 7 PDF Download

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Before you read
Have you  ever found yourself in a situation in which what happened
was the opposite of what you expected? If so, you are familiar with the
‘irony’ of the situation, which is often embarrassing. The story that you
are going to read has a number of such situations.
Soapy is a homeless, jobless man.
Winter is fast approaching and Soapy must have a place
to stay.
Soapy comes to a decision, at last.
SOAPY moved restlessly on his seat in Madison Square. There
are certain signs to show that winter is coming. Birds begin
to fly south. People want new warm coats. And Soapy moves
restlessly on his seat in the park. When you see these signs,
you know that winter is near.
A dead leaf fell at Soapy’s feet. That was a special sign
for him that winter was coming. It was time for all who lived
in Madison Square to prepare.
Soapy’s mind now realised that fact. The time had come.
He had to find some way to take care of himself during
the cold weather. And, therefore, he moved restlessly on
his seat.
2022-23
Page 2


Before you read
Have you  ever found yourself in a situation in which what happened
was the opposite of what you expected? If so, you are familiar with the
‘irony’ of the situation, which is often embarrassing. The story that you
are going to read has a number of such situations.
Soapy is a homeless, jobless man.
Winter is fast approaching and Soapy must have a place
to stay.
Soapy comes to a decision, at last.
SOAPY moved restlessly on his seat in Madison Square. There
are certain signs to show that winter is coming. Birds begin
to fly south. People want new warm coats. And Soapy moves
restlessly on his seat in the park. When you see these signs,
you know that winter is near.
A dead leaf fell at Soapy’s feet. That was a special sign
for him that winter was coming. It was time for all who lived
in Madison Square to prepare.
Soapy’s mind now realised that fact. The time had come.
He had to find some way to take care of himself during
the cold weather. And, therefore, he moved restlessly on
his seat.
2022-23
21
The Cop and the Anthem
southern skies: warmer places Blackwell’s Island: name of a prison (If
Soapy went to prison, the government would look after his food
and stay.) cop: policeman (American English)
Soapy’s hopes for the winter were not very high. He was
not thinking of sailing away on a ship. He was not thinking
of southern skies, or of the Bay of Naples. Three months in
the prison on Blackwell’s Island was what he wanted. Three
months of food every day and a bed every night, three
months safe from the cold north wind and safe from cops.
This is what Soapy wanted most in the world.
For years, Blackwell’s Island had been his winter home.
Richer New Yorkers made their  plans to go to Florida or to
the shore of the Mediterranean Sea each winter. Soapy made
his small plans for going to the Island.
And now, the time had
come. Three big newspapers,
some under his coat and
some over his legs, had not
kept him warm during the
night in the park.
So Soapy was
thinking of the Island.
There were places in the
city where he could go
and ask for food and a
bed. These would be
given to him. He could
move from one building
to another, and he would
2022-23
Page 3


Before you read
Have you  ever found yourself in a situation in which what happened
was the opposite of what you expected? If so, you are familiar with the
‘irony’ of the situation, which is often embarrassing. The story that you
are going to read has a number of such situations.
Soapy is a homeless, jobless man.
Winter is fast approaching and Soapy must have a place
to stay.
Soapy comes to a decision, at last.
SOAPY moved restlessly on his seat in Madison Square. There
are certain signs to show that winter is coming. Birds begin
to fly south. People want new warm coats. And Soapy moves
restlessly on his seat in the park. When you see these signs,
you know that winter is near.
A dead leaf fell at Soapy’s feet. That was a special sign
for him that winter was coming. It was time for all who lived
in Madison Square to prepare.
Soapy’s mind now realised that fact. The time had come.
He had to find some way to take care of himself during
the cold weather. And, therefore, he moved restlessly on
his seat.
2022-23
21
The Cop and the Anthem
southern skies: warmer places Blackwell’s Island: name of a prison (If
Soapy went to prison, the government would look after his food
and stay.) cop: policeman (American English)
Soapy’s hopes for the winter were not very high. He was
not thinking of sailing away on a ship. He was not thinking
of southern skies, or of the Bay of Naples. Three months in
the prison on Blackwell’s Island was what he wanted. Three
months of food every day and a bed every night, three
months safe from the cold north wind and safe from cops.
This is what Soapy wanted most in the world.
For years, Blackwell’s Island had been his winter home.
Richer New Yorkers made their  plans to go to Florida or to
the shore of the Mediterranean Sea each winter. Soapy made
his small plans for going to the Island.
And now, the time had
come. Three big newspapers,
some under his coat and
some over his legs, had not
kept him warm during the
night in the park.
So Soapy was
thinking of the Island.
There were places in the
city where he could go
and ask for food and a
bed. These would be
given to him. He could
move from one building
to another, and he would
2022-23
22
An Alien Hand
be taken care of through the winter. But he liked Blackwell’s
Island better.
Soapy’s spirit was proud. If he went to any of these places,
there were certain things he had to do. In one way or another,
he would have to pay for what they gave him. They would
not ask him for money. But they would make him wash his
whole body. They would make him answer questions. They
would want to know everything about his life.
No. Prison was better than that. The prison had rules
that he would have to follow. But in prison, a gentleman’s
own life was still his own life.
Soapy, having decided to go to the Island, at once began
to move towards his desire.
Soapy does his best to be on the wrong side of the law.
He tries three tricks, all in vain.
The fear that no cop will ever catch him makes him sick
at heart.
There were many easy ways of doing this. The most
pleasant way was to go and have a good dinner at some
fine restaurant. Then he would say that he had no money
to pay. And then a cop would be called. It would all be
done very quietly. The cop would arrest him. He would be
taken to a judge. The judge would do the rest.
Soapy left his seat and walked slowly out of Madison
Square to the place where the great street called Broadway
and Fifth Avenue meet. He went across this wide space
and started north on Broadway. He stopped at a large and
brightly lighted restaurant. This was where the best
food and the best people in the best clothes appeared
every evening.
Soapy believed that above his legs he looked all right.
His face was clean. His coat was good enough. If he could
get to a table, he believed that success would be his. The
2022-23
Page 4


Before you read
Have you  ever found yourself in a situation in which what happened
was the opposite of what you expected? If so, you are familiar with the
‘irony’ of the situation, which is often embarrassing. The story that you
are going to read has a number of such situations.
Soapy is a homeless, jobless man.
Winter is fast approaching and Soapy must have a place
to stay.
Soapy comes to a decision, at last.
SOAPY moved restlessly on his seat in Madison Square. There
are certain signs to show that winter is coming. Birds begin
to fly south. People want new warm coats. And Soapy moves
restlessly on his seat in the park. When you see these signs,
you know that winter is near.
A dead leaf fell at Soapy’s feet. That was a special sign
for him that winter was coming. It was time for all who lived
in Madison Square to prepare.
Soapy’s mind now realised that fact. The time had come.
He had to find some way to take care of himself during
the cold weather. And, therefore, he moved restlessly on
his seat.
2022-23
21
The Cop and the Anthem
southern skies: warmer places Blackwell’s Island: name of a prison (If
Soapy went to prison, the government would look after his food
and stay.) cop: policeman (American English)
Soapy’s hopes for the winter were not very high. He was
not thinking of sailing away on a ship. He was not thinking
of southern skies, or of the Bay of Naples. Three months in
the prison on Blackwell’s Island was what he wanted. Three
months of food every day and a bed every night, three
months safe from the cold north wind and safe from cops.
This is what Soapy wanted most in the world.
For years, Blackwell’s Island had been his winter home.
Richer New Yorkers made their  plans to go to Florida or to
the shore of the Mediterranean Sea each winter. Soapy made
his small plans for going to the Island.
And now, the time had
come. Three big newspapers,
some under his coat and
some over his legs, had not
kept him warm during the
night in the park.
So Soapy was
thinking of the Island.
There were places in the
city where he could go
and ask for food and a
bed. These would be
given to him. He could
move from one building
to another, and he would
2022-23
22
An Alien Hand
be taken care of through the winter. But he liked Blackwell’s
Island better.
Soapy’s spirit was proud. If he went to any of these places,
there were certain things he had to do. In one way or another,
he would have to pay for what they gave him. They would
not ask him for money. But they would make him wash his
whole body. They would make him answer questions. They
would want to know everything about his life.
No. Prison was better than that. The prison had rules
that he would have to follow. But in prison, a gentleman’s
own life was still his own life.
Soapy, having decided to go to the Island, at once began
to move towards his desire.
Soapy does his best to be on the wrong side of the law.
He tries three tricks, all in vain.
The fear that no cop will ever catch him makes him sick
at heart.
There were many easy ways of doing this. The most
pleasant way was to go and have a good dinner at some
fine restaurant. Then he would say that he had no money
to pay. And then a cop would be called. It would all be
done very quietly. The cop would arrest him. He would be
taken to a judge. The judge would do the rest.
Soapy left his seat and walked slowly out of Madison
Square to the place where the great street called Broadway
and Fifth Avenue meet. He went across this wide space
and started north on Broadway. He stopped at a large and
brightly lighted restaurant. This was where the best
food and the best people in the best clothes appeared
every evening.
Soapy believed that above his legs he looked all right.
His face was clean. His coat was good enough. If he could
get to a table, he believed that success would be his. The
2022-23
23
The Cop and the Anthem
part of him that would be seen above the table would look
all right. The waiter would bring him what he asked for.
He began thinking of what he would like to eat. In his
mind he could see the whole dinner. The cost would not be
too high. He did not want the restaurant people to feel any
real anger. But the dinner would leave him filled and happy
for the journey to his winter home.
But as Soapy put his foot inside the restaurant door,
the head waiter saw his broken old shoes and the torn
clothes that covered his legs. Strong and ready hands
turned Soapy around and moved him quietly and quickly
outside again.
Soapy turned off Broadway. It seemed that this most
easy way to the Island was not to be his. He must think of
some other way of getting there.
At a corner of Sixth Avenue was a shop with a wide
glass window, bright with electric lights. Soapy picked up
a big stone and threw it through the glass. People came
running around the corner. A cop was the first among them.
Soapy stood still, and he smiled when he saw the cop.
2022-23
Page 5


Before you read
Have you  ever found yourself in a situation in which what happened
was the opposite of what you expected? If so, you are familiar with the
‘irony’ of the situation, which is often embarrassing. The story that you
are going to read has a number of such situations.
Soapy is a homeless, jobless man.
Winter is fast approaching and Soapy must have a place
to stay.
Soapy comes to a decision, at last.
SOAPY moved restlessly on his seat in Madison Square. There
are certain signs to show that winter is coming. Birds begin
to fly south. People want new warm coats. And Soapy moves
restlessly on his seat in the park. When you see these signs,
you know that winter is near.
A dead leaf fell at Soapy’s feet. That was a special sign
for him that winter was coming. It was time for all who lived
in Madison Square to prepare.
Soapy’s mind now realised that fact. The time had come.
He had to find some way to take care of himself during
the cold weather. And, therefore, he moved restlessly on
his seat.
2022-23
21
The Cop and the Anthem
southern skies: warmer places Blackwell’s Island: name of a prison (If
Soapy went to prison, the government would look after his food
and stay.) cop: policeman (American English)
Soapy’s hopes for the winter were not very high. He was
not thinking of sailing away on a ship. He was not thinking
of southern skies, or of the Bay of Naples. Three months in
the prison on Blackwell’s Island was what he wanted. Three
months of food every day and a bed every night, three
months safe from the cold north wind and safe from cops.
This is what Soapy wanted most in the world.
For years, Blackwell’s Island had been his winter home.
Richer New Yorkers made their  plans to go to Florida or to
the shore of the Mediterranean Sea each winter. Soapy made
his small plans for going to the Island.
And now, the time had
come. Three big newspapers,
some under his coat and
some over his legs, had not
kept him warm during the
night in the park.
So Soapy was
thinking of the Island.
There were places in the
city where he could go
and ask for food and a
bed. These would be
given to him. He could
move from one building
to another, and he would
2022-23
22
An Alien Hand
be taken care of through the winter. But he liked Blackwell’s
Island better.
Soapy’s spirit was proud. If he went to any of these places,
there were certain things he had to do. In one way or another,
he would have to pay for what they gave him. They would
not ask him for money. But they would make him wash his
whole body. They would make him answer questions. They
would want to know everything about his life.
No. Prison was better than that. The prison had rules
that he would have to follow. But in prison, a gentleman’s
own life was still his own life.
Soapy, having decided to go to the Island, at once began
to move towards his desire.
Soapy does his best to be on the wrong side of the law.
He tries three tricks, all in vain.
The fear that no cop will ever catch him makes him sick
at heart.
There were many easy ways of doing this. The most
pleasant way was to go and have a good dinner at some
fine restaurant. Then he would say that he had no money
to pay. And then a cop would be called. It would all be
done very quietly. The cop would arrest him. He would be
taken to a judge. The judge would do the rest.
Soapy left his seat and walked slowly out of Madison
Square to the place where the great street called Broadway
and Fifth Avenue meet. He went across this wide space
and started north on Broadway. He stopped at a large and
brightly lighted restaurant. This was where the best
food and the best people in the best clothes appeared
every evening.
Soapy believed that above his legs he looked all right.
His face was clean. His coat was good enough. If he could
get to a table, he believed that success would be his. The
2022-23
23
The Cop and the Anthem
part of him that would be seen above the table would look
all right. The waiter would bring him what he asked for.
He began thinking of what he would like to eat. In his
mind he could see the whole dinner. The cost would not be
too high. He did not want the restaurant people to feel any
real anger. But the dinner would leave him filled and happy
for the journey to his winter home.
But as Soapy put his foot inside the restaurant door,
the head waiter saw his broken old shoes and the torn
clothes that covered his legs. Strong and ready hands
turned Soapy around and moved him quietly and quickly
outside again.
Soapy turned off Broadway. It seemed that this most
easy way to the Island was not to be his. He must think of
some other way of getting there.
At a corner of Sixth Avenue was a shop with a wide
glass window, bright with electric lights. Soapy picked up
a big stone and threw it through the glass. People came
running around the corner. A cop was the first among them.
Soapy stood still, and he smiled when he saw the cop.
2022-23
24
An Alien Hand
“Where’s the man that did that?” asked the cop.
“Don’t you think that I might have done it?” said Soapy.
He was friendly and happy. What he wanted was coming
towards him.
But the cop’s mind would not consider Soapy. Men who
break windows do not stop there to talk to cops. They run
away as fast as they can. The cop saw a man further along
the street, running. He ran after him. And Soapy, sick at
heart, walked slowly away. He had failed two times.
Across the street was another restaurant. It was not so
fine as the one on Broadway. The people who went there
were not so rich. Its food was not so good. Into this Soapy
took his old shoes and his torn clothes, and no one stopped
him. He sat down at a table and was soon eating a big dinner.
2022-23
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FAQs on NCERT Textbook: The Cop & The Anthem - NCERT Textbooks & Solutions for Class 7

1. What is the summary of the story "The Cop & The Anthem" in NCERT Class 7 textbook?
Ans. "The Cop & The Anthem" is a story about a homeless man named Soapy who wants to spend the winter in prison to escape the harsh weather. However, his attempts to get arrested fail, and he eventually realizes the value of freedom and decides to change his life.
2. How does Soapy try to get arrested in the story "The Cop & The Anthem"?
Ans. Soapy tries various methods to get arrested, including breaking windows, pretending to be a drunkard, and attempting to steal an umbrella. However, all his attempts are unsuccessful.
3. What is the main theme of the story "The Cop & The Anthem"?
Ans. The main theme of the story is the desire for freedom and the realization of its value. Soapy initially wants to go to prison to escape the cold, but through his failed attempts, he realizes the importance of freedom and decides to change his life.
4. How does the story "The Cop & The Anthem" portray the social issue of homelessness?
Ans. The story highlights the struggles and challenges faced by homeless individuals like Soapy. It sheds light on their desperate attempts to find shelter and survive in harsh conditions. It also emphasizes the need for empathy and understanding towards the homeless population.
5. What is the significance of the title "The Cop & The Anthem" in the context of the story?
Ans. The title represents the two central characters of the story, Soapy (the homeless man) and the cop. It symbolizes the contrast between Soapy's desire to be arrested and the cop's duty to maintain law and order. The anthem mentioned in the title refers to the national anthem, which signifies freedom and independence.
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