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Answer the following questions in detail:
Q1. What does the writer say about fishing in the river Thames?
Ans. The writer described that the neighbourhood of streatley and Goring was a great fishing centre. One could do excellent fishing there. The river abounded in different kinds of fish such as pike, roach, dace, gudgeon and eel. One could fish there all the day. Some people stayed there for a month, others even for a year but they never caught them. The writer also tried to become a good fisherman but he was advised by some old fishermen to give it up as he lacked imagination to become a Thames angler. They said it is quite necessary to have an ability to tell lies easily with a blush to become a good fisherman. The writer lacked this quality.
Q2. Where had the old man caught the fish and how much did it weigh in his story?
Ans. One day George and the writer visited a parlour where they saw a dusty old glass case, fixed very high up above the chimney-piece, containing a trout. It was a monstrous fish. When an old man saw them looking at the fish, he told them that it was eighteen pounds and six ounces in weight and that he had caught it sixteen years ago from below the bridge over the river Thames.
Q3. How many people claimed to have caught the fish? Describe the stories told by them.
Ans. The old man told them that he had caught that fish sixteen years ago and went away. After that a series of people came in the parlour and they all claimed to have caught that fish (in the glass case) and each time the size became bigger. Local carrier, the third man, a stolid solemn working middle-aged individual and finally the landlord, all claimed that they have caught that fish. The local carrier told them that he had caught it nearly five years ago and it weighed twenty-six pounds. The third man told them that it was the most remarkable thing to catch it and that they were right to say it was he who caught it. It took him half an hour to land it and it had broken his rod. He took it home and weighed thirty-four pounds. Finally the land lord told them that he caught it when he was a boy and was saved from a whacking for being a truant at school, by this fish.
Q4. Why do you think these five people had the courage to tell such a lie?
Ans. All these five people were fishermen who lived around streatley and Goring. They were expert at telling lies and their ability to catch fish is a lie as well. The entire fishing fraternity has a powerful imagination. They are able to invent and tell story with utter conviction and an air of absolute truthfulness. The place was full of fish but mostly nobody caught fish. As the place was famous as a fishing place and people came there to fish so they never doubted their ability to catch fish. When they heard others telling stories of handsome catches, they exaggerated their own haul and thus they were encouraged to tell such lies.
Q5. How and what truth did the friends discover about the trout?
Ans. When the landlord went out of the room, George kept on gazing at the trout with surprise. He was so excited that he climbed up on the back of a chair to have a close look at it. But the chair slipped and he clung to the trout-case and tried to save himself. The trout came down with a crash and shattered into thousand pieces as it was made of plaster of Paris. Thus the truth was discovered.
Q1. Sketch the character of the narrator as a fisherman.
Ans. The writer is a great story teller. He tells us various humorous stories related to fishing fraternity. In this chapter he tells us how expert the fishermen are at telling whopping lies about their prowess in catching big fish. In fact the writer laughs at their powerful imagination, the ability to invent, to tell a story with utter conviction and an air of absolute truthfulness. The writer himself wants to become a good fisherman. But some old hands tell him that a good imagination and ability to tell a lie with a blush are necessary to become a good fisherman. But the writer admits that he lacked these qualities. Thus he comes out as a great observer of human nature and an admirer of natural beauty.
Q2. Imagining yourself to be present in the parlour along with George and the writer, make a diary entry about the stories told by different people.
20th June, 2014
Once I happened to be at a country parlour at Streatley. There was a large glass-case containing a trout up above the chimney-piece which attracted me as well as everyone in the room. Two strangers were eager to know about the giant trout. An old gentleman who was smoking a pipe told them that he had caught it sixteen years ago and that it weighed more than eighteen pounds and went out. After that a series of people came and each claimed he had caught it. finally the landlord came and told then the real story. He claimed he had caught it years ago when he was a boy. He had bunked school and this trout had saved him from whacking. As he went out, George tried to have a close look of it. He climbed up a chair but slipped and while and while trying to save himself clung to the glass case. He fell down on the ground along with the case. The trout lay shattered into a thousand fragments as it was made of plaster of Paris.