The Spider and the Fly (By Mary Howitt)
About the passage
Understand and Answer
A. Answer these questions with reference to the context.
‘Oh my! You do say the loveliest things! I’ll come in by and by.
I’ll not hurt your feelings by thinking you to be sly.’
1. Who says these words and to whom?
Ans. Flip says these words and to Spidy.
2. What lovely things did ‘you’ say?
Ans. Spidy mentions and comments that the fly is really sweet creature with handsome wings and brilliant eyes.
3. What happened after these words were said?
Ans. The fly falls for flattering words and finally gets trapped.
B. Answer these questions.
1. What did Spidy promise to show Flip in his parlour?
Ans. Spidy promised Flip to show many curious things in his parlour.
2. What did Spidy offer when Flip refused his invitation the first time?
Ans. When Flip refused Spidy’s invitation the first time, Spidy offered his silken bed on which Flip can relax for a while. He also tells her that there are pretty curtains which look very beautiful and are fine and thin.
3. How did Spidy tempt Flip a third time?
Ans. Spidy tried to tempt Flip a third time by asking her to visit his pantry which is a good store of all nice things.
4. Flip knew that going into Spidy’s parlour would lead to her death. Give two examples from the play which support this statement.
Ans. The two examples from the play which support this statement are:
i. “For he who goes up your winding stair
Can never come down again.”
ii. “For often have I heard it said,
They never, NEVER wake again,”
5. What does the spider finally do to trap the fly?
Ans. Towards the end of the story, we read that spider uses a lot of flattering words to trap the fly. He mentions and comments that the fly is really sweet creature with handsome wings and brilliant eyes. The fly falls for these flattering words and finally gets trapped.
6. What is the lesson that the story of the spider and the fly teaches us?
Ans. The story of ‘The Spider and the Fly’ teaches us a very important lesson. It tells us to stay away from the strangers and from their idle, silly and flattering words. It also tells us to keep our heart, eye and ear closed for such people.
Think and answer
1. Fables are stories that teach a lesson. Fables have animal characters who talk, think, and act like human beings. The story of the spider and the fly is also a fable.
Do you know a fable where a character uses lies and tricks to get something?
Does he also succeed like the spider? Share the story with rest of the class.
Ans. (Do it yourself)
2. Recall Gopal’s servant in ‘The Mango Story’. Compare him with Spidy. How are they similar? Who is more dangerous of the two?
Ans. (Do it yourself)