English CBSE Class 12 NCERT Vistas Chapter 2 The Tiger King Line by Line Explanation and Meaning of Difficult Words
THE TIGER KING
THE Maharaja of Pratibandapuram is the hero of this story. He may be identified as His Highness Jamedar-General, Khiledar-Major, Sata Vyaghra Samhari, Maharajadhiraja Visva Bhuvana Samrat, Sir Jilani Jung Jung Bahadur, M.A.D., A.C.T.C., or C.R.C.K. But this name is often shortened to the Tiger King.
|Often||Generally, Most of times|
|Shorten||To make short|
Pratibandapuram is an area in India. This story is about king of this area. He had so many designations. Owing to these designations his name had become very long. He was, in short, popularly known as the Tiger King.
I have come forward to tell you why he came to be known as Tiger King. I have no intention of pretending to advance only to end in a strategic withdrawal.
|Come forward||To offer help, To volunteer|
|Pretend||To act falsely, To give excuse|
|Strategic||According to plan|
|Withdrawal||Return, To come back|
I want to tell you the reason why the Maharaja acquired the nick name of the Tiger King. I do not want to start the discussion and then stop before completing the story.
Meaning that author will tell complete story. He will not stop in between.
Even the threat of a Stuka bomber will not throw me off track. The Stuka, if it likes, can beat a hasty retreat from my story.
|Stuka||A plane used in II world war|
|Bomber||Plane used to drop bombs|
|Hasty||In hurry, Hurriedly|
|Retreat||To come back, Return|
Stuka planes were used in Second World War to drop bombs.
Author says that even the danger of these planes dropping bombs will not stop him from narrating the full story. He is so determined that these planes will have to quickly go back. He will surely complete his story.
Right at the start, it is imperative to disclose a matter of vital importance about the Tiger King. Everyone who reads of him will experience the natural desire to meet a man of his indomitable courage face-to-face.
|Right at the start||In the beginning itself|
|Disclose||To tell a secret, To make known|
|Vital importance||Very important|
|Face to face||In person, Personally|
In the beginning it is necessary to inform something very important about the Tiger King. He was very brave person. His determination was very strong. Everyone who reads about him, will like to meet him in person.
But there is no chance of its fulfilment. As Bharata said to Rama about Dasaratha, the Tiger King has reached that final abode of all living creatures. In other words, the Tiger King is dead.
|Final Abode||Last home (meaning dead) , Heaven|
|Living Creatures||Man, animals, insects etc living on earth|
Now there is no opportunity to meet him. The tiger king is now dead. In Ramayan, Bharat had informed Rama about death of Dasaratha – their father. Here author is informing about death of Tiger King.
The manner of his death is a matter of extraordinary interest. It can be revealed only at the end of the tale.
The process of death of the Tiger King is very interesting. This will be disclosed towards end of the story.
The most fantastic aspect of his demise was that as soon as he was born, astrologers had foretold that one day the Tiger King would actually have to die.
Soon after birth of the Tiger King, astrologers had made a prediction. They predicted that one day the Tiger King will die. This was the greatest aspect about his death.
Author has made a satire here. It can also be considered a funny narration.
“The child will grow up to become the warrior of warriors, hero of heroes, champion of champions. But…” they bit their lips and swallowed hard.
|Bit their lips||Stopped speaking|
The astrologers predicted that the child (Tiger King) will become a great warrior, a great leader and a great champion. And then they suddenly stopped speaking. They closed their lips and swallowed.
When compelled to continue, the astrologers came out with it. “This is a secret which should not be revealed at all.
The astrologer was forced to complete the prediction. They told that they were going to tell a secret which should never be disclosed.
And yet we are forced to speak out. The child born under this star will one day have to meet its death.”
|Under this star||At this point of time|
But he is telling that secret because he is being forced to speak. Astrologer told that child born at that point of time (with certain position of stars in the sky) would one day surely die.
At that very moment a great miracle took place. An astonishing phrase emerged from the lips of the ten-day old Jilani Jung Jung Bahadur, “O wise prophets!’’
|Took place||Happened, Occurred|
|Phrase||Group of words|
|Prophets||Astrologers, Representative of God|
As soon as astrologers narrated their prediction a big miracle happened. The ten year old boy spoke – O wise astrologers! Everybody was surprised that a ten year old boy was speaking.
Everyone stood transfixed in stupefaction. They looked wildly at each other and blinked. ‘‘O wise prophets! It was I who spoke.’’
|Looked wildly||Looked intently, Gazed|
|Blinked||Quickly shit and open eyes,|
Everyone was shocked, confused and greatly surprised. They gazed at each other. They blinked their eyes. The boy told that it was he who had spoken
This time there were no grounds for doubt. It was the infant born just ten days ago who had enunciated the words so clearly. The chief astrologer took off his spectacles and gazed intently at the baby.
Now there was no reason to have a doubt. The small boy who was born ten days ago had spoken these words. The chief astrologer removed his spectacles. He carefully looked at the baby.
‘‘All those who are born will one day have to die. We don’t need your predictions to know that. There would be some sense in it if you could tell us the manner of that death,’’ the royal infant uttered these words in his little squeaky voice.
|There would be some sense||It will be wise|
|Royal||From family of kings|
|Squeaky||High pitched, Shrill|
They boy said that everybody who is born on this earth will have to die one day. We do not need any prediction to know this fact. It would be wise if you could tell mode of death. The boy from the royal family spoke these words. His voice was sharp and high pitched.
The chief astrologer placed his finger on his nose in wonder. A baby barely ten days old opens its lips in speech!
The chief astrologer was surprised. He placed his finger on his nose. He thought how a ten year old boy could speak so clearly.
Not only that, it also raises intelligent questions! Incredible! Rather like the bulletins issued by the war office, than facts.
The boy not only spoke but asked intelligent questions. The chief astrologer could not believe this. The boy did not speak like reading news. He was speaking facts.
The chief astrologer took his finger off his nose and fixed his eyes upon the little prince. ‘‘The prince was born in the hour of the Bull. The Bull and the Tiger are enemies, therefore, death comes from the Tiger,’’ he explained.
The chief astrologer removed his finger from his nose. He looked at that little prince. He said that the boy was born in the hour of bull. The bull and the tiger are enemies of each other. So a tiger will kill him.
You may think that crown prince Jung Jung Bahadur was thrown into a quake when he heard the word ‘Tiger’. That was exactly what did not happen.
|Crown prince||Prince who would become king|
Everybody thought that the prince would start trembling after hearing about tiger. But this did not happen.
As soon as he heard it pronounced, the crown prince gave a deep growl. Terrifying words emerged from his lips. ‘‘Let tigers beware!’’
|Heard it pronounced||Listened|
As soon as the prince listened the word ‘tiger’ he roared. This frightened everybody. He told that tigers should be afraid of him.
This account is only a rumour rife in Pratibandapuram. But with hindsight we may conclude it was based on some truth.
|Hindsight||Afterthought, Understand after occurring|
This narration is a common rumour in Pratibandapuram. But after going through the full story, we may conclude that it was true to some extent.
Crown prince Jung Jung Bahadur grew taller and stronger day by day. No other miracle marked his childhood days apart from the event already described.
|Apart from||Except, Besides|
The crown prince became taller and stronger. No other surprising aspect or event happened during his childhood. The only surprising event of his childhood has been described above.
The boy drank the milk of an English cow, was brought up by an English nanny, tutored in English by an Englishman, saw nothing but English films — exactly as the crown princes of all the other Indian states did
|Brought up||To take care and educate|
|Nanny||Governess, Ayah, Maid|
The prince drank milk of English cows. His maids were English women. He was taught English by an Englishman. He saw only English movies. This was the trend for every crown prince of all other states of India.
This is a satire on upbringing of princes of India. It tells that they had become complete slave of Englishmen and England.
When he came of age at twenty, the State, which had been with the Court of Wards until then, came into his hands.
When he became 20 years old, he became the king. During his childhood and till that time, his state was governed by a group of people called ‘Court of Wards’.
‘Court of Wards’ was an arrangement to take care of state administration till the crown prince was a child.
But everyone in the kingdom remembered the astrologer’s prediction. Many continued to discuss the matter. Slowly it came to the Maharaja’s ears.
Everyone in his kingdom remembered the prediction of the astrologer. Many people used to talk about it. After some time Maharaja (The Tiger King) came to know about the prediction.
There were innumerable forests in the Pratibandapuram State. They had tigers in them. The Maharaja knew the old saying, ‘You may kill even a cow in self-defence’. There could certainly be no objection to killing tigers in self-defence.
|Innumerable||In large numbers|
There were many forests in the kingdom of Pratibandpuram. There were tigers in each forest. The Maharaja knew that to save one’s life, one could kill even a cow. (Cow is considered a sacred animal and its killing is not allowed). Hence it was perfectly OK to kill tiger to save one’s life.
The Maharaja started out on a tiger hunt. The Maharaja was thrilled beyond measure when he killed his first tiger. He sent for the State astrologer and showed him the dead beast. ‘‘What do you say now?’’ he demanded.
|Beyond measure||Cannot be measured|
The Maharaja went to hunt a tiger. When he killed his first tiger he was very happy. He called the chief astrologer and showed him the dead body of the animal. The Maharaja asked him what was his opinion now.
‘‘Your majesty may kill ninety-nine tigers in exactly the same manner. But…’’ the astrologer drawled. ‘‘But what? Speak without fear.’’ “But you must be very careful with the hundredth tiger.’’
The astrologer said that Maharaja may kill ninety nine tiger. After saying this line, the astrologer stopped and said something very unclearly. The Maharaja asked him to speak without any fear. The astrologer said that he should be very careful while killing the hundredth tiger. He wanted to say that Maharaja would be killed by the hundredth tiger.
‘‘What if the hundredth tiger were also killed?’’ ‘‘Then I will tear up all my books on astrology, set fire to them, and…’’
The Maharaja asked the astrologer what will happen if he killed the hundredth tiger also. The astrologer said that in that case he would tear and burn all his books of astrology. He means to say that he was very sure of his prediction.
‘‘And…’’‘‘I shall cut off my tuft, crop my hair short and become an insurance agent,’’ the astrologer finished on an incoherent note.
|Tuft||Bunch of hair, Choti|
|Crop my hair||Cut my hair|
The astrologer said that he would cut his ‘choti’. He will cut his hair very short. He will leave the profession of astrology and become an insurance agent. He said all these in a confused and unconnected manner.
From that day onwards it was celebration time for all the tigers inhabiting Pratibandapuram. The State banned tiger hunting by anyone except the Maharaja.
|Celebration time||Happy days|
From that day the tigers living in Pratibandapuram were happy. Hunting of tiger was prohibited in the state. Only the Maharaja could do hunting of tigers.
A proclamation was issued to the effect that if anyone dared to fling so much as a stone at a tiger, all his wealth and property would be confiscated.
|Dared to||Had the courage|
|Confiscated||Seized, Taken away|
An order was issued that if anybody threw even a stone at a tiger, his property will be taken away from him.
The Maharaja vowed he would attend to all other matters only after killing the hundred tigers. Initially the king seemed well set to realise his ambition.
The king promised to himself that first he would kill hundred tigers. Only after that he would look at other aspects of administration. In the beginning the king was easily moving towards achieving his ambition.
Not that he faced no dangers. There were times when the bullet missed its mark, the tiger leapt upon him and he fought the beast with his bare hands. Each time it was the Maharaja who won.
|Missed the mark||Did not hit target|
|Bare hands||Using only hands, Without weapon|
The king faced many dangers during tiger hunt. Sometimes the bullet did not hit the target (tiger). The tiger jumped upon the king. He had to fight the tiger without any weapon. Every time Maharaja killed the tiger.
At another time he was in danger of losing his throne. A high-ranking British officer visited Pratibandapuram. He was very fond of hunting tigers. And fonder of being photographed with the tigers he had shot.
Once the king had the danger of losing his kingdom. A senior British officer came to Pratibandpuram. He liked tiger hunting. He liked to have his photograph with dead body of tiger killed by him.
As usual, he wished to hunt tigers in Pratibandapuram. But the Maharaja was firm in his resolve. He refused permission.
The British officer wanted to do tiger hunting in Pratibandpuram. But the king did not give him permission. He was determined about his decision. The decision of not allowing anybody else to hunt tigers.
‘‘I can organise any other hunt. You may go on a boar hunt. You may conduct a mouse hunt. We are ready for a mosquito hunt. But tiger hunt! That’s impossible!’’
The king told that he would give permission to hunt any other animal. The officer would be allowed to hunt a wild pig or a mouse. He could hunt even a mosquito. But he would not be allowed to hunt a tiger.
Hunting of a mouse and a mosquito is mentioned as a humour.
The British officer’s secretary sent word to the Maharaja through the dewan that the durai himself did not have to kill the tiger. The Maharaja could do the actual killing.
|Sent word||Sent message|
‘Durai’ means chief or the leader. Here durai means the high ranking British officer.
The secretary of the British officer sent a message to the king. This message was sent through the minister (dewan) of the king. He said that the officer did not want to kill the tiger. Maharaja could hunt the tiger.
What was important to the durai was a photograph of himself holding the gun and standing over the tiger’s carcass. But the Maharaja would not agree even to this proposal.
(In the message it was written that) The officer wanted his photograph with dead body of the tiger. In the photograph officer wolud hold the gun and he would put his one leg on the dead body of tiger. But the king did not agree even to this.
If he relented now, what would he do if other British officers turned up for tiger hunts?
|Relented||Agreed, Gave relaxation|
The king thought if he agreed this time, in future he would have to agree to all other British officers for tiger hunt.
Because he prevented a British officer from fulfilling his desire, the Maharaja stood in danger of losing his kingdom itself.
The king did not fulfil desire of a British officer. So there was a danger that he may lose his kingdom. Meaning that British would remove the king from throne.
The Maharaja and the dewan held deliberations over this issue. As a result, a telegram was dispatched forthwith to a famous British company of jewellers in Calcutta. ‘Send samples of expensive diamond rings of different designs.’
The king and his dewan had a discussion about this matter. After the discussion a telegram was immediately sent to a British firm in Calcutta. This firm was making jewellery. The telegram asked the firm to send samples of expensive diamond rings.
Some fifty rings arrived. The Maharaja sent the whole lot to the British officer’s good lady. The king and the minister expected the duraisani to choose one or two rings and send the rest back. Within no time at all the duraisani sent her reply: ‘Thank you very much for your gifts.’
|Within no time||Quickly, Immediately|
Duraisani means wife of durai.
About fifty rings were received from the firm. The king sent all the rings to wife of the officer. The king and his minister expected that she would select one or two rings. She will return the remaining rings. Immediately she sent a reply thanking the king for gifts. Meaning that she had kept all the rings.
In two days a bill for three lakh of rupees came from the British jewellers. The Maharaja was happy that though he had lost three lakh of rupees, he had managed to retain his kingdom.
|Retained||Save, Continue to hold|
After two days, the jewellery firm sent a bill for rupees three lakh. The king had to pay the amount. But the king was happy that he had not lost his kingdom.
The Maharaja’s tiger hunts continued to be highly successful. Within ten years he was able to kill seventy tigers. And then, an unforeseen hurdle brought his mission to a standstill.
|Mission||Assignment, Goal, Aim|
He was very successful in his tiger hunts. In 10 years he had killed 70 tigers. After that an unexpected difficulty stopped his assignment of tiger hunts.
The tiger population became extinct in the forests of Pratibandapuram. Who knows whether the tigers practised birth control or committed harakiri? Or simply ran away from the State because they desired to be shot by British hands alone?
|Extinct||Ended, Not existing|
Population of tiger in the forests of Pratibandpuram became zero. In a satire author makes guesses for the reason. Nobody knew if tigers adopted birth control methods. Or they committed suicide. Or they ran away from forests because they wanted to get killed by British. These are humorous reasons also.
One day the Maharaja sent for the dewan. ‘‘Dewan saheb, aren’t you aware of the fact that thirty tigers still remain to be shot down by this gun of mine?’’ he asked brandishing his gun.
|Brandish||To show, To raise or wave in air|
One day the king called his minister. He said told dewan that 30 more tigers were yet to be killed by him. While saying these words, he raised his gun towards dewan.
Shuddering at the sight of the gun, the dewan cried out, ‘‘Your Majesty! I am not a tiger!’’‘‘Which idiot would call you a tiger?’’“No, and I’m not a gun!’’
Looking at the gun, the dewan started trembling. He told the king that he was not a tiger. King replied that only a fool will say that he was tiger. The dewan said that he was not a gun.
Actually the dewan is terrified.
“You are neither tiger nor gun. Dewan saheb, I summoned you here for a different purpose. I have decided to get married.’’
The king said to dewan that he was neither a tiger nor a gun. The king told dewan that he had called him for another reason. The king had decided to get married.
The dewan began to babble even more. ‘‘Your Majesty, I have two wives already. If I marry you …’’‘‘Don’t talk nonsense! Why should I marry you? What I want is a tiger…’’
|Babble||To talk silly things|
The dewan again started talking silly things. He said that he had two wives and could not marry the king. The king scolded dewan and asked him not to talk nonsense. King told dewan that he wanted a tiger.
‘‘Your Majesty! Please think it over. Your ancestors were married to the sword. If you like, marry the gun. A Tiger King is more than enough for this state. It doesn’t need a Tiger Queen as well!’’
The dewan requested king to think about it once again. He told king that his ancestors had married a sword. If the king liked, he could marry a gun. A Tiger King is sufficient for the kingdom. The kingdom does not want a Tiger Queen.
The Maharaja gave a loud crack of laughter. ‘‘I’m not thinking of marrying either a tiger or a gun, but a girl from the ranks of human beings.
The king laughed loudly. He told dewan that he did not want to marry a tiger or a gun. He wanted to marry a girl from another kingdom. And the girls should be a human being.
First you may draw up statistics of tiger populations in the different native states. Next you may investigate if there is a girl I can marry in the royal family of a state with a large tiger population.’’
The king advised dewan to make list of kingdoms of India. Then write number of tigers in each state. Then find out if he can marry a girl of royal family of the state that has large number of tigers.
The dewan followed his orders. He found the right girl from a state which possessed a large number of tigers.
Dewan obeyed orders of the king. He found a girl from royal family of a state that had large population of tigers.
Maharaja Jung Jung Bahadur killed five or six tigers each time he visited his father-in-law. In this manner, ninety-nine tiger skins adorned the walls of the reception hall in the Pratibandapuram palace.
The king married that girl. The king used to often go to meet his father in law. During every visit he killed five or six tigers. In this method he killed 99 tigers. Skins of all 99 tigers were decorated on walls of the reception hall of his palace.
The Maharaja’s anxiety reached a fever pitch when there remained just one tiger to achieve his tally of a hundred. He had this one thought during the day and the same dream at night.
|Fever pitch||Very strong, Very high|
When the king had killed 99 tigers, he became very anxious. Now he was only one tiger away from reaching 100. His anxiety was very high. During the day he thought only about hundredth tiger. During the night he dreamt of only hundredth tiger.
By this time the tiger farms had run dry even in his father-in-Iaw’s kingdom. It became impossible to locate tigers anywhere.
Now all the forests in kingdom of his father in law were also without any tiger. It was impossible to find or see a tiger.
Yet only one more was needed. If he could kill just that one single beast, the Maharaja would have no fears left. He could give up tiger hunting altogether.
|Give up||To leave|
But only one more tiger was required. If the king killed hundredth tiger, he would be without any danger of losing his life. Then he could leave tiger hunting.
But he had to be extremely careful with that last tiger. What had the late chief astrologer said? “Even after killing ninety-nine tigers the Maharaja should beware of the hundredth…’’ True enough.
|Beware of||To be careful, Cautious|
The king had to be very careful with the hundredth tiger. He remembered the prediction of chief astrologer. He had said that the king should be very cautious of the hundredth tiger.
The tiger was a savage beast after all. One had to be wary of it. But where was that hundredth tiger to be found? It seemed easier to find tiger’s milk than a live tiger.
|Wary of||To be careful, Cautious|
After all, the tiger is a dangerous animal. One needs to be careful. But it had become difficult to find the hundredth tiger. It appeared that it was easier to find milk of tiger. But finding tiger was difficult.
This is again a satire and humour.
Thus the Maharaja was sunk in gloom. But soon came the happy news which dispelled that gloom. In his own state sheep began to disappear frequently from a hillside village.
The king had become very sad. But a happy news came which removed the sadness. In his kingdom sheep were disappearing from a village. This village was situated near a hill.
It was first ascertained that this was not the work of Khader Mian Saheb or Virasami Naicker, both famed for their ability to swallow sheep whole. Surely, a tiger was at work.
First villagers confirmed that Khader Mian Saheb and Virasami Naicker were not eating these sheep. Both these persons were famous for their capacity to eat one full sheep. Now it was concluded that a tiger was taking away sheep.
The villagers ran to inform the Maharaja. The Maharaja announced a three-year exemption from all taxes for that village and set out on the hunt at once.
|Set out||Started, began|
The villagers went to Maharaja and informed him about presence of a tiger near their village. The king was very happy. He announced that villagers need not pay tax for three years. He immediately started for hunt.
The tiger was not easily found. It seemed as if it had wantonly hid itself in order to flout the Maharaja’s will.
It was difficult to find that tiger. It seemed that the tiger was intentionally hiding to disobey the desire of king.
The Maharaja was equally determined. He refused to leave the forest until the tiger was found. As the days passed, the Maharaja’s fury and obstinacy mounted alarmingly. Many officers lost their jobs.
The king was also determined to find the tiger. He did not want to leave the forest before killing the tiger. Many days passed. Now the king got angry. He became more determined. Because of his anger, many people lost their jobs.
One day when his rage was at its height, the Maharaja called the dewan and ordered him to double the land tax forthwith.
|At its height||Very high|
One day the king was very angry. He called his dewan. He ordered to immediately double the tax on the villagers.
‘‘The people will become discontented. Then our state too will fall a prey to the Indian National Congress.’’‘‘In that case you may resign from your post,’’ said the king.
The dewan told king that villagers will become dissatisfied. They will become member of Indian National Congress. The king said if that happens, dewan will need to resign from his post.
The dewan went home convinced that if the Maharaja did not find the tiger soon, the results could be catastrophic.
|Catastrophic||Terrible, Disastrous, Tragic|
The dewan went to his home. He understood tiger for the king needs to be found very soon. Otherwise it would have dangerous results. Actually dewan was very afraid.
He felt life returning to him only when he saw the tiger which had been brought from the People’s Park in Madras and kept hidden in his house.
At his home dewan was hiding a tiger. This tiger was brought from People’s Park of Madras. (Madras is now called Chennai). When dewan saw this tiger he felt as if his life had come back to him.
At midnight when the town slept in peace, the dewan and his aged wife dragged the tiger to the car and shoved it into the seat. The dewan himself drove the car straight to the forest where the Maharaja was hunting.
At midnight, all people in the town were sleeping. The dewan and his old wife pulled the tiger up to their car. Then they pushed the tiger on the back seat of the car. Dewan himself drove the car to the forest where king had camped for hunting.
Dewan is sacrificing his own tiger to save his job. He does not have any affection towards the king.
When they reached the forest the tiger launched its satyagraha and refused to get out of the car. The dewan was thoroughly exhausted in his efforts to haul the beast out of the car and push it down to the ground.
In the forest, dewan tried to push the tiger out of the car. But the tiger was not ready to come out. Dewan kept on trying to pull out the tiger. Dewan was completely tired. Somehow he pushed the tiger out of the car.
On the following day, the same old tiger wandered into the Maharaja’s presence and stood as if in humble supplication, “Master, what do you command of me?’’
|Following day||Next day|
Next day, same old tiger moved towards the king so that he could see it. It stood in front of the king as if to make a polite request. Sir, what are your orders for me.
It was with boundless joy that the Maharaja took careful aim at the beast. The tiger fell in a crumpled heap
|Crumpled||Folded at many places|
The sight of tiger was an unlimited joy for the king. He aimed his gun at the animal and fired a bullet. The tiger fell down in the form of a folded stack.
‘‘I have killed the hundredth tiger. My vow has been fulfilled,’’ the Maharaja was overcome with elation. Ordering the tiger to be brought to the capital in grand procession, the Maharaja hastened away in his car.
|Hastened||Went in a hurry|
The king was extremely happy. He shouted that he had killed the hundredth tiger. His pledge was completed. He ordered that body of the tiger should be brought to his palace in a big procession. He hurriedly went to his palace in his car.
After the Maharaja left, the hunters went to take a closer look at the tiger. The tiger looked back at them rolling its eyes in bafflement.
|Rolling its eyes||Moving its eyes|
The hunters (helpers accompanying the king) went near the tiger after Maharaja had gone. They looked at the tiger. The tiger also looked at them. The tiger looked a bit confused. It was rolling its eyes.
The men realised that the tiger was not dead; the bullet had missed it. It had fainted from the shock of the bullet whizzing past. The hunters wondered what they should do.
|Whizzing||Making sound of a whistle|
|Whizzing past||Moved quickly|
The men understood that the tiger had not died. The bullet had missed its aim. The tiger had become unconscious due to sound of bullet. The hunters thought what they should do now.
They decided that the Maharaja must not come to know that he had missed his target. If he did, they could lose their jobs. One of the hunters took aim from a distance of one foot and shot the tiger. This time he killed it without missing his mark.
The hunters decided that they will not tell the king about it. They were afraid that they might lose their job. So one of them fired a bullet at the tiger. This time the hunter did not miss the target. The bullet hit the tiger. The tiger died.
So the hundredth tiger was not killed by the king. And the king did not know this.
Then, as commanded by the king, the dead tiger was taken in procession through the town and buried. A tomb was erected over it.
|Tomb||Structure made on place of burial|
According to orders of the king, the tiger was taken to the town in a procession. After that it was buried. And a tomb was made over the place of its burial.
A few days later the Maharaja’s son’s third birthday was celebrated. Until then the Maharaja had given his entire mind over to tiger hunting. He had had no time to spare for the crown prince.
|Given his entire mind||Given his full attention|
|No time to spare||Did not have time|
After some days, it was third birthday of son of the king. Earlier the king was fully occupied with tiger hunting. He could not give any time to his son – the crown prince.
But now the king turned his attention to the child. He wished to give him some special gift on his birthday.
|Turned his attention to||Took care of , Devoted time|
But now the king wanted to take care of his son. He wanted to give a special gift to his son on his birthday.
He went to the shopping centre in Pratibandapuram and searched every shop, but couldn’t find anything suitable. Finally he spotted a wooden tiger in a toyshop and decided it was the perfect gift.
He wanted to buy a gift for his son. He went to various shops of the town. He searched many shops. But did not find a suitable gift. In one shop he saw a wooden tiger. He decided to gift this toy to his son.
The wooden tiger cost only two annas and a quarter. But the shopkeeper knew that if he quoted such a low price to the Maharaja, he would be punished under the rules of the Emergency.
In olden times, one rupee had sixteen parts. Each part was called an ‘anna’. So a quarter rupee was equal to four annas. Two annas and a quarter means six annas.
Cost of the wooden tiger was six annas. But the shopkeeper did not have the courage to tell such a low price for the toy. He feared that he might be punished by the king for selling such a cheap toy.
This is a satire on rich people. They want to buy costly items only.
So, he said, ‘‘Your Majesty, this is an extremely rare example of craftsmanship. A bargain at three hundred rupees!’’
|Rare||Special, Of limited type|
The shopkeeper told the king that it was a special toy. It is an example of a beautifully made toy. It is difficult to find such a good toy. The toy is a very good piece of art. He told that its price was three hundred rupees.
‘‘Very good. Let this be your offering to the crown prince on his birthday,’’ said the king and took it away with him.
The king told that it will be a gift to the crown prince from shopkeeper. He took the toy with him. Meaning that the king did not pay anything to the shopkeeper.
This is again satire on how kings behaved with common people in their kingdom.
On that day father and son played with that tiny little wooden tiger. It had been carved by an unskilled carpenter. Its surface was rough; tiny slivers of wood stood up like quills all over it.
|Sliver||Thin piece, Splinter|
|Quill||Thorn, Sharp pointed piece, Bristle|
On the birthday of crown prince, the father and son played with that very small toy. That toy was made by unskilled carpenter. Surface of the toy was rough. It had small sharp pieces on its surface. These were like thorns or bristles.
One of those slivers pierced the Maharaja’s right hand. He pulled it out with his left hand and continued to play with the prince.
|Pierced||Punctured, Made a hole|
One sliver went into the right hand of the king. He removed it with his left hand. He continued to play with his son.
The next day, infection flared in the Maharaja’s right hand. In four days, it developed into a suppurating sore which spread all over the arm.
The infection in right of the king increased. In four days puss started coming out the wound. The infection spread to his full arm.
Three famous surgeons were brought in from Madras. After holding a consultation they decided to operate. The operation took place.
To treat his wound, three famous surgeons were called from Madras. They discussed among themselves and decided to operate the wound. The operation was done.
The three surgeons who performed it came out of the theatre and announced, “The operation was successful. The Maharaja is dead.”
After operation three surgeons came out of operation theatre. They announced that the operation was successful but Maharaja was dead.
This is a satire on surgeons. How can an operation be called successful if the patient is dead.
In this manner the hundredth tiger took its final revenge upon the Tiger King.
In this way, the hundredth tiger took it revenge from the Tiger King. The prediction of astrologers came correct.