About the passage
A. Read to understand
1. Rewrite the following paragraph by arranging the ten sentences to show the order in which the incidents occurred in the story.
The queen asked whether it was a male or female fish. The fisherwoman said that it was a male fish. The queen’s servant was buying fish. The fish laughed. The vazir’s son set out to find a solution. The king ordered all the women of the queen’s palace to jump over a pit. The queen got angry, so the king asked the vazir to solve the matter. The queen said she did not want it as males were not permitted in her palace. No one but the man in disguise was able to jump across the pit, so he was caught. He met a girl who told him that there was a man in woman’s clothes hiding inside the palace.
2. Choose the correct options.
a. ‘No, but soon you will be taking my dead body for burial.’
i. Who said this to whom?
ii. Why did the speaker believe that death was close at hand?
b. ‘Why did the Bhaskara call Amir a ‘strange’ man?
c. What gift did Shivani send over to Amir?
d. ‘Impossible! He would have been caught immediately and put to death for such an offence.’
i. Who said this and to whom?
ii. What was this ‘impossible’ event that the speaker talks of?
B. Read to infer
1. Why did the queen ask the maids to draw the curtains?
2. Do you think that the king was disturbed by the queen’s threat to leave the kingdom? Give reasons for your answer.
3. How did Shivani realize that the servant had been unfaithful?
4. The king’s character turns out to be both impulsive and generous. Support this statement with examples from the play.
5. Why does Amir believe that Shivani might be able to help him solve the problem of the fish?
6. Do you find Amir to be intelligent? Justify your answer with examples from the play.
1. Why do you think the man was hiding in the queen’s palace as a woman? Could he have been the spy of a rival kingdom? Discuss in class.
2. Was Amir’s method of finding the man hidden in the queen’s palace a good one? Why or why not? Discuss and find another possible way to solve this problem.