English CBSE Class 11 NCERT Snapshot Chapter 3 Ranga’s Marriage Line by Line Explanation and Meaning of Difficult Words
Author –Masti Venkatesh Iyanger
After reading title of this story, some of you may ask why the title is ‘Ranga’s Marriage’. One may suggest that titles could have been ‘Ranganatha Vivaha’ or ‘Ranganatha Vijaya’. I am aware that I could have used some other impressive titles like ‘Jagannatha Vijay’ or ‘Girija Kalyana’.
|But Then||After all, Certainly|
|Fancy||Extravagant, Decorative, Artistic|
|What a pity!||It is very bad|
After all this story is not about Jagannatha’s victory or marriage of Girija, It is about the marriage of our own Ranga. Therefore I did not select any artistic title for the story. Name of our village is Hosahalli. You have not heard name of this village. It is not your fault. This does find reference in any book of geography. Narrator means to say that it is a small and remote village.
The officers of England used to write books in English. Perhaps they did not know about this village so they did not mention it in any book. Our own people also forgot about it. They are like a group of sheep. If one sheep jumps into a pit, all other would jump into it. They would not think on their own.
|Geographer||Person dealing in geography|
|Cartographer||Person who makes maps|
|Not even the shadow||No trace or sign|
Sahibs of England and our own geographers both had not mentioned about the village in their texts. Therefore we should not hope that our map maker will remember to mark the village on the map. Thus there is no sign of our village on any map.
|Festive meal||Food prepared on a festival|
|karigadabu||A fried sweet filled with coconut and sugar|
Narrator feels sorry that he had started with a topic but was now talking about a different topic. He had started discussion about Ranga’s marriage. Now he is talking about his village. Mysore is an important part of India similar to karigadabu being an important part of meal prepared on a festival. And Hosahalli is an important part of Mysore as the filling is to karigadabu.
Narrator wants to say that Hosahalli is an important village in Mysore State. Karnataka was earlier known as Mysore State.
|Glowingly||Proudly, With pride|
I request you to believe me. What I have said is perfectly true. I will not object if you question Hosahalli being an important part of Mysore State. But I will maintain my opinion about Hosahalli. I am not the only person to speak with pride about Hosahalli.
|Quite a few places||Many places|
|annayya||A respectable term for elder|
There is a doctor in our village. His name is Gundabhatta. He agrees with me about Hosahalli. He has visited many places. He has not been to England. Some people ask him whether he has visited England. The doctor replies that he has not gone there because he wants them to go there.
|Flea||Insects found on body of animal|
|Flea pestered dog||A dog whose body has many fleas|
|Running around like a flea pestered dog||Not talking about main point|
|As a matter of fact||actually|
The doctor used to say that it is his habit to talk to the point. I have seen only some places in my life. Actually he had seen many places.
|brahmarandhra||Part of the head or skull|
There are some mango trees in out village. When you come to our village I will give you a mango. You should take only one bite from it because it is very sour. Its sourness will go directly to your head.
On one occasion I took home a mango. We made chutney out of it. We all ate it. Then we started suffering from cough. So we went to the doctor to take medicine. Then doctor told me about the special quality of the fruit.
|Behold||To see or observe|
|A feast to behold||Very good thing to observe, Beautiful|
Mango is a speciality of our village. Many other things are special in our village. We have a climber that grows in the pond of our village. Water of this pond is always clear – free of pollution. This creeper has very beautiful flowers.
|Rambling||Talking with any aim|
When one goes for bathing in the pond, one can get two leaves from the creeper. Leaves are so big that these would be sufficient to serve lunch for the whole family. You can say that I am talking many things about my village without any aim. But I am always like that while talking about my village.
|Drop me a line||Write a short letter to me|
I have said enough about my village. If you want to come to our village please write to me. I will inform you about location of my village and the things you may like to see. You should agree that the best way to know about a place is to visit there.
Now I will narrate an incident that had happened about 10 years ago. At that time many people in our village did not know English. An accountant from our village had sent his son to Bangalore to study. It was considered a very courageous step.
|Come across||Meet, See|
Nowadays situation is different. Many people in our village know English. During holidays you can meet such people on every street. They would be talking in English. During those days, we did not speak English. We did not include English words while talking in Kannada.
|In the house||You are inside the house|
|At the house||You may be around the house, on terrace etc|
What had happened the other day is quite shameful. Please believe me. I was in the house of Rama Rao. They purchased a bundle of firewood from a woman. Ram Rao’s son came out of the house. He asked the woman about the price of the wood. She replied it was four pice.
The boy told her that he did not have any change. He asked the woman to come the next day. The woman did not understand the word ‘change’. She went away whispering something to herself. I too did not know meaning of this English word. After sometime I went to the house of Ranga. I asked him meaning of this word. He explained to me then I understood its meaning.
|Priceless||Having very high value, Difficult to procure|
|Widespread||Available at many places, Common|
About ten years ago, knowledge of English language was not common. It was very difficult to acquire this knowledge. So it was considered very valuable. Therefore return of Ranga to the village was considered a very big event.
|Rushed||Went in large numbers, Went quickly|
|Have a look||See, Meet|
In large numbers people of village went to the house of Ranga. They said that son of accountant had come. The boy who had gone to Bangalore for higher studies has come back to village. Let go and meet him.
|Courtyard||Open space in a house|
I was also attracted by the crowd. So I also went to Ranga’s house and stood in his courtyard. I asked why so many people had come there. There is no performance of a monkey here.
|Without any brains||Not intelligent|
|Kept quiet||Remained silent, Did not reply|
A boy was standing there. Narrator thought the boy was not intelligent. He loudly asked why narrator had come there. He was young, not mature and did not have any manners. Narrator felt insulted by the question. Narrator did not reply him. I thought that all these events are of past.
|Turned into||Become, Changed to|
|Black Hole of Calcutta||Overcrowded place causing suffocation|
There were so many people at his house. So Ranga came out. He was smiling. None of us went inside the house. Otherwise it would have caused suffocation to all of us. Thankfully we were in an open area.
Everyone was surprised to note that Ranga had not changed during last six months. He was out of the village for six months for studying.
|janewara||The sacred thread worn by people|
An old was standing near Ranga. She rubbed her hand on his chest and looked into his eyes. She said that Ranga was still wearing the sacred thread. So he has maintained tradition of his caste. After saying this she went away. Ranga laughed upon listening this.
|Crowd melted away||People went away|
Soon crowd understood that Ranga had the same hands, legs, eyes and nose of six months ago. Then all people disappeared from the place just like sugar would disappear in the mouth of a child. I continued to stand at his house.
After every person had gone I asked Ranga how was he. Is everything good with you. At that time Ranga noticed me. He came near me and respectfully said namaskar to me. He said that he was all right.
|Draw your attention||Inform you, Request you to notice|
|Assess||Evaluate, Judge, Determine|
I want to inform you about this quality of Ranga. He could recognize when it would benefit him to talk to someone. He could correctly judge importance of a person.
|Present-day boy||A boy of modern day. A boy of new generation|
|Jerking||Giving jolt, Twitching|
|Wand||Magic stick of magician|
He did not do namaskara like a modern day boys does. A modern boy would look towards the Sun, stand stiff like a pole, jerk his body like a walking stick and say namaskar. Ranga did not only fold his hand.
|A few||Some. Small numbers|
|Pleasantries||Polite general discussion|
Ranga bent his body to touch my feet. I blessed that may he get married soon. We politely talked about general aspects and then I left his house.
|Be of service to society||Helpful to society, Become social|
In the afternoon of the same day, Ranga came to my house. He had brought some oranges with him in his hand. I thought that he was a helpful and kind person. It would be good for him to marry, settle down and become more social.
|For a while||For some time|
|This and that||Nothing particular, General|
|Came to the point||Started talking about something important|
For some time we had a general discussion. Then I started talking about an important aspect. I asked him when he planned to get married. He replied that he would not marry soon. I asked him the reason.
Ranga replied that he wanted to find a suitable girl. He knew about an officer who got married about six months ago. I have been informed that his age is thirty years and age of her wife is 25 years. They will be able to talk to each other with affection.
|Troupe||A group of actors or dancers that travels & performs together|
Assume that I marry a very young girl. She may consider my words of affection as words of anger. Recently the play Shakutala was staged in Bangalore by a troupe.
If Shakuntala were a young girl just like brides of these days, Dushyantha would not have fallen in love with her. In that situation Kalidas would not have written his play.
Ranga explained that a man should always marry a matured girl. Otherwise one should remain unmarried. That is why he was not marrying now. I asked him if he had any other reason for not marrying.
Ranga said that a man should marry a girl he likes and respects. But we always have arranged marriage. One cannot respect a girls who has sign of spilled milk on one side of her face and sign of tears on the other side of the face. Or a girl who does not know how to eat by herself. Narrator has used these expression to symbolise an immature girl.
I told Ranga that it would be situation of a neem and a bittergourd. Ranga laughed and agreed with me.
|Made up my mind||Decided|
I was of the opinion that Ranga would be a good husband. I was unhappy to know that he had decided to remain a bachelor. At that instant, I decided to ensure his marriage.
Niece of Rama Rao had come to stay in his house. She was an attractive looking girl of 11 years age. She was from a big town. She knew how to play veena and harmonium. She had a sweet voice. Her both the parents had died. She was staying with her uncle. Ranga and that girl were most suitable to each other for marriage, narrator thought.
I used to often go to house of Rama Rao. Therefore the girl had no hesitation in talking to me. Her name was Ratna. Next morning I went to the house of Rama Rao. I told her wife that I wanted to send some buttermilk to them. I advised that Ratna should come to my house to collect it.
Ratna came to my house in the morning of Friday. She was wearing a good saree. I asked her to sit in a room of my house and requested her to sing. I called Ranga to my house. Ratna started singing the song – Krishnamurthy, in front of my eyes. While Ratna was singing, Ranga reached at the door of my house.
|Peeped in||Looked in|
Ranga stopped at the entry to the door. He did not come inside. He did not want singing to stop. He was eager to see the singer. He looked into the room carefully. The light was blocked because of his presence so a shadow appeared in the room. Ratna looked up. She saw an unknown person. She immediately stopped singing. Ranga had not expected this.
When you buy the best quality of mango, you would eat it slowly. First enjoy its peel and then one would bite its flesh. One does not want to waste any part of it. But after taking one bite, if the fruit falls on the ground, one is disappointed. Similar was the condition of Ranga, when the singing stopped.
Ranga asked me if I had asked him to come to my house. Ranga came into the room and sat on a chair. Ratna was standing a bit away. Her head was lowered, She was looking at the ground. Many times Ranga looked at Ratna. On one occasion Ranga looked at me and I was also looking at him. This is the meaning of meeting eyes.
He looked embarrassed. Nobody spoke for some time.
Ranga said that probably because of his coming into the house, the girl stopped singing. He further said that he would like to go. But he did not go. Actually Ranga did not want to go. Narrator explains that in the time of Kaliyuga, one cannot expect actions to match the words.
|Swami||A word equivalent to sir in Kannada|
Ratna became very shy. She ran into the house. After sometime Ranga asked me about Ratna.
Ranga asked who was inside the house. The narrator has equated Ranga to lion and himself to a he- goat. Ranga had the courage to ask who was inside the house. I had fixed marriage of nine couples so far. I wanted to fix marriage for one more couple. Narrator felt that Ranga had become courageous in asking about the girl.
I replied that it did matter to any of us who was that girl. Because I was married and Ranga did not want to marry. Ranga asked with lot of hope if she was unmarried. His voice did not show eagerness. But I knew he was eager to know about her.
I told Ranga that Ratna got married about a year ago. His face shrunk. He was disappointed. After sometime Ranga left my house. He said that he had some work at his home.
I met the astrologer of our village. I told to keep his books ready to read and tell about position of stars. Narrator expects that auspicious occasion for marriage would soon need to be declared. Narrator told Shastri what he should tell in such situation. Then he went to house of Ranga. Mood of Ranga was unchanged.
|Lost in thought||Thinking deeply|
|See a doctor||Consult a doctor|
|I am my usual self||I am OK|
I asked Ranga that he appeared to be deeply thinking about something. He denied. I suggested that if he had headache we should consult a doctor. Ranga said that he did not have headache and he was fine.
I told Ranga that I had similar feeling during the process of selecting a bride for me. I further told him that probably this was not the reason for his present condition. Narrator wanted to tell that he knew Ranga was not looking for a bride. Ranga looked at me but did not speak.
I requested Ranga to come with me to meet the astrologer of the village. He will find if position of stars was favourable to Ranga.
|Exclaimed||Told with surprise|
Ranga came with me without any objection. When Shastri saw me, he told with surprise – “Shyama, I have not met since very long time”. Shyama is name of the narrator of this story.
I became angry. I shouted and started telling him that in the morning I had …. Shastri did not allow me to speak further. He spoke before I could complete my sentence. He told me that I had come to meet him now after completing my work. If he had not told those words our plan would have failed. After this I became very careful about what I said.
Shastri looked at Ranga and asked me when did the son of accountant came back to village. What could he do for Ranga? Ranga rarely comes to the village and meets people.
|Paraphernalia||Things associated with an activity, Here it means books referred by an astrologer|
|Have something in mind||Thinking about something|
I asked Shastri to take out books referred by him. Ranga is thinking about something. Please tell him why he is worried. It is the test of your knowledge about astrology.
|Cowries||Shell of small marine animal|
|Palmyra||Type of tree|
|Ayya||A word of respect meaning sir|
I had spoken to Shastri as if it were an order. He took out two sheets of paper, some cowries and a book written on leaves of palmyra tree. He addressed me as sir and told that the astrology is an ancient science. There is a story about it.
|Harikatha||An occasion or event to tell stories about God|
Shastri said that he will not tell the story. This is not the occasion of telling stories of God that permits to tell many stories. You may get bored. I will tell you these stories some other day.
Shastri moved his lips quickly. He counted on his fingers. Then Shastri asked Ranga about his zodiac sign. Ranga did not know it. Shastri did some more calculations. Finally, in serious voice he said that Ranga had a girl in his mind.
|Burst out laughing||Laughed loudly|
Till this time I have been controlling my laughter. But now I started laughing loudly. I looked at Ranga and said that I had told the same thing to him. Then I asked Shastri who was that girl.
Shastri thought for some time. He told that something found in ocean is probably the name of the girl. I asked if the name could be Kamala or Pachchi. He said it is possible. He further said if it is not Kamala or pachchi, it would be pearl or ratna – meaning a precious stone.
I told that name of the girl residing in the house of Rama Rao is Ratna. I asked if discussion about marriage between Ranga and Ratna be successful. Shastri thought for some time and said the discussion would certainly be successful. Ranga was surprised and he looked happy. I noticed his happiness.
|His face had fallen||He was disappointed|
I said that the girl was married. Then I looked at Ranga. He looked disappointed. Shastri said that he was not aware about marriage of Ratna. There may be another girl who is a good match for Ranga. I have told you what my books have indicated.
|Pass by||Come near or cross something on your way|
We left the house of Shastri. On our way back, we came near house of Rama Rao. Ratna was standing at the door of the house. I went into the house alone and came out within one minute.
|Madhavacharya||He was a saint|
I said to Ranga that it was a surprise that the girl was not married. Some days ago someone had told me that she was married. The prediction of Shastri is true. Rangappa it is difficult for me to believe that you have been thinking about Ratna. I asked him to swear in the name saint Madhavacharya and to tell the truth.
I do not think anyone would have directly asked this type of question. Ranga accepted that he was thinking about Ratna. He also said that earlier he did not believe in shashtra. But now he has understood that there is truth in those books.
In the evening I went to the well of the village. Shastri was also there. I told him that he had repeated exactly what I had asked him to repeat. Ranga did not have any doubt about it. I further said that the shastras are really wonderful. He did not like my comments.
Shastri objected to my statements. He said that he could have easily found everything through his books. I agree that hints given by you were helpful in quickly reading the shastras. He further told me that a good person should not make such statements.
One day Rangappa came to my house. He invited me for dinner. I asked what the occasion was. He replied that it is birthday of Shyama. He would be three year old.
I told Ranga that Shyama is not a nice name. it means someone who is dark coloured. I am as dark as a piece of oil-cake. Why did you give this name to your child who is quite fair.
Narrator is talking to Ranga. You and Ratna both are really like a child. I recalled that in Britain it is the tradition to name one’s child after someone you like. Now your wife is again pregnant since last eight months. Who is at your home to help your mother?
Ranga replied that his sister had also come with his mother. I went to his home for dinner. As soon as I entered the house Shyama came running towards me. He put his arms around my legs. I kissed him on his cheek. I gave him a ring. I placed it on his small finger.
Now I request you to allow me to go. I am always around to serve you more stories. Hope you were not bored by this story.