English CBSE Class 11 NCERT Snapshot Chapter 8 The Tale of melon City – Textbook Questions and Answers Free Solution
THE TALE OF MELON CITY – Textbook Questions
Q 1. Narrate ‘The Tale of Melon City’ in your own words.
Answer: This story is about a city that was ruled by a foolish king, though he has been described as just and placid.
He got an arch built in his city for its beautification. While walking through the arch, it touched the head of the King and the crown fell down. The King wanted to punish the person who was responsible for building this low height arch.
The King ordered to hang the chief builder. But he blamed workmen, workmen blamed mason, mason blamed architect. Architect defended himself by saying that the King had changed his design.
Now the King was in a dilemma. He ordered to call the wisest man of the city. The oldest man of the city was called. He suggested that the arch must be hanged.
The misters said that by touching the head of King, the arch had blessed the King. So it cannot be hanged.
So a noose was made on a scaffold. It was a bit high. King was the only person whose height matched that of the noose. So the King himself was hanged.
As per custom of the city the first person to enter the city was to decide the next King. That person was a fool. He was in the habit of answering every question as melon. So a melon became the next king of the city.
People of the city were not bothered who their king was. They wanted to live in peace and enjoy their freedom.
Q 2. What impression would you form of a state where the King was ‘just and placid’?
Answer: In this story the words ‘just and placid’ mean an illogical and foolish person.
The whole story revolves around foolish decisions. Such a king could hardly take good decisions. The excuses given by various persons to escape hanging are not logical. Selection of a wise person on the basis of age is yet another example of poor decision making.
Finally the King himself was hanged. The selection of melon as the new king confirms foolishness of people. Those people were not concerned about who their king was. They wanted to live in peace.
Thus whenever a foolish king rules a state, everybody starts acting like a fool. It does not serve good to anyone.
Q 3. How, according to you, can peace and liberty be maintained in a state?
Answer: Peace and liberty in a state can be maintained through good administration. The state needs to take care of well-being of people. The law breakers need to be quickly punished. Those doing good work needs to be awarded.
Equality of right, impartiality and availability of opportunity for everyone needs to be ensured.
Good economic activity needs to be encouraged. Due attention needs to be given towards education and health of people. The state must have enough military power to safeguard itself and its citizens against attack from other countries.
Through these means peace and liberty can be maintained.
Q 4. Suggest a few instances in the poem which highlight humour and irony.
Answer: The logic given by chief builder, workmen, mason and architect to escape punishment are quite humourous. Ever-changing decision of King too causes humour. The verdict wise man to hang the arch causes lot of fun. Measuring height of everyone for suitability for the noose is a mockery. Finally a melon being crowned as a new king is really funny.
Selection of a wise man based on age is an irony. Wisdom and age can never be equated. The king was hanged as per his own decree is an irony. After his death, minister saying ‘long live the king’ is the biggest irony of the poem.
Q 5. ‘The Tale of Melon City’ has been narrated in a verse form. This is a unique style which lends extra charm to an ancient tale. Find similar examples in your language. Share them in the class.
Answer: Students should answer this question themselves.