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Mrs. Packletide’s Tiger Summary, Question Answers - CBSE Class 10 English

By Ruchika Gupta

Mrs. Packletide’s Tiger Explanation, Summary, Difficult Words and Question Answers

 

CBSE class 10 English Chapter 2 - Mrs. Packletide’s Tiger

CBSE Class 10 English Chapter 2 Mrs. Packletide’s Tiger Summary , detailed explanation of the story along with meanings of difficult words . Also, the explanation is followed by a Summary of the lesson. All the exercises and Question and Answers given at the back of the lesson have also been solved

 

About the author:

  • Hector Hugh Munro (1870 -1916)
  • He wrote under the pen name Saki.
  • He started his career as a journalist.
  • His first book was ‘The Rise of the Russian Empire’.
  • He was a British writer whose witty stories satirized the society and culture of his day.  
  • He was considered a master of the short story.
  • He wrote a full-length play,  two one-act plays, a historical study, a short novel,  and  a fantasy about future German invasion and occupation of Britain

 

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Summary of Mrs. Packletide’s Tiger
Mrs. Packletide is jealous of Loona Bimberton’s achievement and in order to show her down, she wants to shoot a tiger. Loona Bimberton had travelled to the jungles in Africa in an aero plane in order to hunt a tiger. Her achievement was the talk of the town and so Mrs. Packletide herself wanted to get a tiger skin and a lot of photographs with the hunt. She felt that by getting the photographs published in the newspapers, she could attract all the attention and show Loona down.

 

She planned to organize a lunch party in honour of Loona but her actual motive was to display the tiger skin that she procured and show Loona down.

 

Mrs. Packletide announced a reward of a thousand rupees to anyone who arranged a suitable tiger – one which was easier to shoot for her. The villagers were eager to earn the reward money and so they made suitable arrangements for her to shoot with ease. They arranged an old, ill tiger and restricted it to the jungle so that it did not run away.

Ebook Img

 

Children were positioned to guard the jungle area, goats were left in the jungle to act as food for it. A platform was raised from where the tiger could be shot at easily. The village women also scolded their children to not to disturb the tiger from it’s sleep. A goat, as a bait, was tied at the perfect spot.

 

On the night fixed for the shooting, Mrs. Packletide and her paid companion Miss. Mebbin sat hidden on the raised platform.  

 

The goat’s persistent sound attracted the beast but it rested rather than attacking it. Miss Mebbin suggested that as the tiger was too old, the amount of money paid for it was very huge. Also, that they need not pay for the goat if the tiger did not eat it.

 

Mrs. Packletide aimed at her prey and fired the gun shot. The tiger lay flat on the ground. The villagers and Mrs. Packetide were joyous and celebrated her achievement of killing the tiger.  

 

It was Miss. Mebbin who noticed that the tiger did not die of the gun shot and that the gun shot had killed the goat. The beast died of heart failure due to the loud sound of gunshot.

 

Mrs. Packletide did not bother about it as she had got what she wanted – the tiger skin. Even the villagers did not object to it as they wanted the reward money. The newspapers were loaded with Mrs. Packletide’s photographs and Loona Bimberton was shown down upon.

 

Miss. Mebbin was a greedy woman. When Mrs. Packletide gained a lot of publicity, she threatened to disclose her secret to the world. She assured Mrs. Packletide that Loona would surely believe that the bullet had killed the goat and not the tiger. The tiger died due to heart failure as it was old and ill.

 

She demanded a price for keeping her secret saying that she wanted to buy a weekend cottage but had no money for it.

 

Mrs. Packletide was forced to give her six hundred and eighty pounds to buy the cottage. She had to pay the hush money  in order to prevent being disgraced.
However, she gave up hunting as the added secondary expenses were too high.

 

 

Explanation of Chapter 2 - Mrs. Packletide’s Tiger

It was Mrs. Packletide's pleasure and intention that she should shoot a tiger. Not that the lust to kill had suddenly descended on her, or that she felt that she would leave India safer and more wholesome than she had found it, with one fraction less of wild beast per million of inhabitants.

 

The author introduces the main character, Mrs. Packletide. She wanted to shoot a tiger. He discusses the reason for her new interest. She was neither a hunter nor did she feel that by killing one tiger, she would make the huge population of India feel safer.

 

One fraction less of wild beast per million of inhabitants means one tiger less in ratio to the huge population of the country.

 

 

The compelling motive for her sudden deviation towards the footsteps of Nimrod was the fact that Loona Bimberton had recently been carried eleven miles in an aeroplane by an Algerian aviator, and talked of nothing else; only a personally procured tiger-skin and a heavy harvest of press photographs could successfully counter that sort of thing.

 

The reason to shoot a tiger was her  jealousy of Loona Bimberton,due to which she followed the footsteps of Nimrod, a biblical figure known for his hunting skills. Loona Bimberton had travelled to the jungles in Africa in an aero plane, covering a distance of eleven miles, with a pilot from Algeria  in order to hunt a tiger. All this was rare and unheard of in those times and so, her achievement was the talk of the town. Mrs. Packletide herself wanted to get a tiger skin and a lot of photographs with the hunt. She felt that by getting the photographs published in the newspapers, she could attract all the attention and show Loona down. She wanted to outshine Loona.

 

Mrs. Packletide had already arranged in her mind the lunch she would give at her house in Curzon Street, ostensibly in Loona Bimberton's honour, with a tiger-skin rug occupying most of the foreground and all of the conversation. She had also already designed in her mind the tiger-claw brooch that she was going to give Loona Bimberton on her next birthday.

 

Mrs. Packletide was a wishful thinker, she planned to organize a lunch party in honour of Loona but her actual motive was to display the tiger skin that she procured and show Loona down.She had also planned to gift her a brooch in the shape of a tiger’s claw. The design of the brooch was intended in such a manner so as to make fun of Loona and to mock at her.

 

In a world that is supposed to be chiefly swayed by hunger and by love Mrs. Packletide was an exception; her movements and motives were largely governed by dislike of Loona Bimberton.

 

Unlike the world which gets motivated by the want to fulfill their hunger and desire to love, Mrs. Packletide's actions on the other hand reflected the dislikes off Loona Bimberton. The push factor for her was her jealousy.

 

Circumstances proved propitious Mrs. Packletide had offered a thousand rupees for the opportunity of shooting a tiger without over-much risk or exertion, and it so happened that a neighbouring village could boast of being the favoured rendezvous of an animal of respectable antecedents, which had been driven by the increasing infirmities of age to abandon game-killing and confine its appetite to the smaller domestic animals.

 

The circumstances were favourable for Mrs. Packletide. She had announced a reward of a thousand rupees to anyone who arranged a suitable tiger – one which was easier to shoot for her, without putting her life in danger. The neighbouring village was a famous point where a lot of tigers were found. The villagers were eager to earn the reward money and so they made suitable arrangements for her to shoot with ease. They arranged a tiger of good lineage (humour intended). Also, the tiger was old and ill due to old age, hence, it was not as ferocious. It had given up big time hunting and now satisfied its hunger by hunting smaller animals. Such a tiger was easier to shoot at and was not dangerous for Mrs. Packletide.

 

The prospect of earning the thousand rupees had stimulated the sporting and commercial instinct of the villagers; children were posted night and day on the outskirts of the local jungle to head the tiger back in the unlikely event of his attempting to roam away to fresh hunting-grounds, and the cheaper kinds of goats were left about with elaborate carelessness to keep him satisfied with his present quarters. The one great anxiety was lest he should die of old age before the date appointed for the memsahib's shoot. Mothers carrying their babies home through the jungle after the day's work in the fields hushed their singing lest they might curtail the restful sleep of the venerable herd-robber.

 

The reward money lured the villagers. They wanted the shooting expedition to be a success in order to win the reward. They made many efforts in order to make it easier for Mrs. Packletide. The children were asked to guard the outskirts of the jungle, in case the tiger tried to escape (humour intended). Cheap goats were left in the jungle to act as food for it, lest it should die due to starvation before being shot down by Mrs. Packletide (humour intended). A platform was raised from where the tiger could be shot at easily. The village women hushed their children to not to disturb the tiger from it’s sleep. A cheap goat, as a bait, was tied at the spot which had a clear view from the raised platform so that  Mrs, Packletide could shoot the tiger when it pounced upon it.

 

The great night duly arrived, moonlit and cloudless. A platform had been constructed in a comfortable and conveniently placed tree, and thereon crouched Mrs. Packletide and her paid companion, Miss Mebbin.

 

The night chosen for the shooting was also a perfect one. The sky was moonlit so that Mrs. Packletide could spot the tiger with ease. Mrs. Packletide had got along a paid companion, Miss. Mebbin who would publicize her achievement back home in London.  They sat hidden on the raised platform constructed for their comfort, between the trees.

 

A goat, gifted with a particularly persistent bleat, such as even a partially deaf tiger might be reasonably expected to hear on a still night, was tethered at the correct distance.

 

The goat tied was so loud that even a partially deaf tiger might hear its sound. (humour intended). The goat bleated so loudly that no one, not even a partially deaf tiger could miss it’s sound. The scene was all set for the tiger to attack it’s prey.

 

With an accurately sighted rifle and a thumb- nail pack of patience cards the sportswoman awaited the coming of the quarry.

 

Mrs. Packletide has been referred to as a sportswoman. She had a rifle in one hand to shoot the tiger. In the other hand she had a pack of cards (called ‘patience cards’ as they helped her keep patience, she played cards with Louisa Mebbin while waiting for the tiger to arrive).

 

"I suppose we are in some danger?" said Miss Mebbin.

She was not actually nervous about the wild beast, but she had a morbid dread of performing an atom more service than she had been paid for.

 

"Nonsense," said Mrs. Packletide; "it's a very old tiger. It couldn't spring up here even if it wanted to."

 

"If it's an old tiger I think you ought to get it cheaper. A thousand rupees is a lot of money."

 

Miss Mebbin enquired if she is in danger. She was not nervous that the beast could attack them, but didn't want to do even a slightest of extra service for which she was not paid.

 

She was getting impatient due to the wait time. This shows her greedy and money - minded nature. With the rifle and ammunition Mrs. Packletide was ready to hunt, to Miss Mebbin’s question she replied that the tiger was too old, it won’t be able to jump at this height. Miss Mebbin’s reply again shows her money minded attitude as she said that if the tiger was too old then the amount of money paid for it was very huge. Also, that they need not pay for the goat if the tiger did not eat it.

 

Louisa Mebbin adopted a protective elder-sister attitude towards money in general, irrespective of nationality or denomination. Her energetic intervention had saved many a rouble from dissipating itself in tips in some Moscow hotel, and francs and centimes clung to her instinctively under circumstances which would have driven them headlong from less sympathetic hands.

 

Louisa Mebbin had a protective attitude towards money. Just right she was protective about Mrs. Packletide’s money like an old sister is. It was not for her welfare though! But Miss Mebbin herself wanted to extract the maximum amount of money. And she didn’t allow her to just spend her rubbles, francs and centimes (Russian currency) on tips and things she deemed as less important.

 

which would have driven them headlong from less sympathetic hands.

relates to Mrs Packletide who was wasteful and spendthrift. It was Miss Mebbin’s intervention which saved the money as she stopped her from spending it mindlessly.

 

 

Her speculations as to the market depreciation of tiger remnants were cut short by the appearance on the scene of the animal itself.

While Miss Mebbin was calculating the price of the kind of tiger that was arranged for shooting, her thoughts were cut short by the appearance of the tiger on the scene.

 

As soon as it caught sight of the tethered goat it lay flat on the earth, seemingly less from a desire to take advantage of all available cover than for the purpose of snatching a short rest before commencing the grand attack.

It seemed that rather than taking advantage of the night time and the dense forest surrounding them, the tiger was taking some rest before making the ‘grand attack’ (humour intended).

 

"I believe it's ill," said Louisa Mebbin, loudly in Hindustani, for the benefit of the village headman, who was in ambush in a neighbouring tree.

Seeing the tiger’s reaction, Louisa spoke up loudly that it seemed that the tiger was ill. She wanted to be heard by the village headman, spoke in their native language of ‘hindustani’.

The headman was busy in another hunting expedition. She was complaining for the poor quality of the tiger arranged for shooting as this could help them save some money.

 

"Hush!" said Mrs. Packletide, and at that moment the tiger commenced ambling towards his victim.

 

"Now, now!" urged Miss Mebbin with some excitement; "if he doesn't touch the goat we needn't pay for it." (The bait was an extra.)

 

As soon as the tiger started to approach the prey, Miss Mebbin got excited and said “if the goat remained unharmed you need not to pay for it” and asked Mrs. Packletide to go for the aim.

 

 

The rifle flashed out with a loud report, and the great tawny beast sprang to one side and then rolled over in the stillness of death. In a moment a crowd of excited natives had swarmed on to the scene, and their shouting speedily carried the glad news to the village, where a thumping of tom-toms took up the chorus of triumph.

 

Mrs. Packletide aimed at her prey and fired the gun shot. The tiger lay flat on the ground. The villagers and Mrs. Packletide were joyous and celebrated her achievement of killing the tiger. Villagers started shouting, dancing and even started playing drums.

 

 

And their triumph and rejoicing found a ready echo in the heart of Mrs. Packletide; already that luncheon-party in Curzon Street seemed immeasurably nearer.

 

Everyone was so happy, Mrs. Packletide could foresee the party she was long waiting for.

 

It was Louisa Mebbin who drew attention to the fact that the goat was in death-throes from a mortal bullet-wound, while no trace of the rifle's deadly work could be found on the tiger. Evidently the wrong animal had been hit, and the beast of prey had succumbed to heart-failure, caused by the sudden report of the rifle, accelerated by senile decay.

 

It was Miss. Mebbin who noticed that the tiger did not die of the gunshot and that the gunshot had killed the goat. The beast died of heart failure due to the loud sound of gunshot.
Mrs. Packletide was pardonably annoyed at the discovery; but, at any rate, she was the possessor of a dead tiger, and the villagers, anxious for their thousand rupees, gladly connived at the fiction that she had shot the beast. And Miss Mebbin was a paid companion.      

 

Mrs. Packletide initially got annoyed to find the truth but did not bother about it as she had got what she wanted – the tiger skin, she was the owner of it. Even the villagers did not object to it as they wanted the reward money.

 

Therefore did Mrs. Packletide face the cameras with a light heart, and her pictured fame reached from the pages of the Texas Weekly Snapshot to the illustrated Monday supplement of the Novoe Vremya.

 

Miss Packletide was getting photographs clicked with a smile but at the back of her mind, the truth of her expedition was lurking. Stll as long as she had the tiger skin and the photographs published in the newspapers, she could fulfil her aim of outshining Loona.

 

As for Loona Bimberton, she refused to look at an illustrated paper for weeks, and her letter of thanks for the gift of a tiger-claw brooch was a model of repressed emotions. The luncheon-party she declined; there are limits beyond which repressed emotions become dangerous.

 

When Mrs. Packletide gained a lot of publicity Loona Bimberton couldn’t see it, she was so depressed and angry. She in-fact declined the invitation for the luncheon-party.
was a model of repressed emotions means that the letter of thanks reflected her jealousy.

 

there are limits beyond which repressed emotions become dangerous - The author wants to say that Loona’s jealousy was about to cross the limit and subsequently, she could go to any extent which would become dangerous.

 

"How amused everyone would be if they knew what really happened," said Louisa Mebbin a few days after the ball.

 

"What do you mean?" asked Mrs. Packletide quickly.

 

"How you shot the goat and frightened the tiger to death," said Miss Mebbin, with her disagreeably pleasant laugh.

Miss Mebbin started showing her true colours. She threatened to disclose her secret to the world and tried to extort money to keep her secret.. She assured Mrs. Packletide that Loona would surely believe that the bullet had killed the goat and not the tiger. The tiger died due to heart failure as it was old and ill.

 

"No one would believe it," said Mrs. Packletide, her face changing colour as rapidly as though it were going through a book of patterns before post-time.

 

"Loona Bimberton would," said Miss Mebbin. Mrs. Packletide's face settled on an unbecoming shade of greenish white.

 

"You surely wouldn't give me away?" she asked.

Mrs. Packletide couldn’t believe those words coming out of Miss Mebbin’s mouth, she got pale, and hesitatingly said no one would believe her word. Taking advantage of their rivalry Miss Mebbin said Loona Bimbeton would surely believe her.

 

"I've seen a week-end cottage near Darking that I should rather like to buy," said Miss Mebbin with seeming irrelevance. "Six hundred and eighty, freehold. Quite a bargain, only I don't happen to have the money."

 

Louisa Mebbin, being a greedy woman and taking advantage of the situation, demanded a price for keeping this secret. She said she had seen a weekend cottage that she would love to buy but had no money for it. Hence, Mrs Packletide is forced to give her the money (the six hundred and eighty pounds) so that Louis can buy the cottage and keep her image as it is.

 

 

Louisa Mebbin's pretty week-end cottage, christened by her "Les Fauves," and gay in summer-time with its garden borders of tiger-lilies, is the wonder and admiration of her friends.

 

She named it “Les Fauves” which is a French word meaning ‘For the wild beasts’ and planted Tiger lilies in the garden as a note of thanks to the tiger due to which she had got it.

 

"It is a marvel how Louisa manages to do it," is the general verdict.

Mrs. Packletide indulges in no more big-game shooting.

"The incidental expenses are so heavy," she confides to inquiring friends.

 

Louis Mebbin’s weekend cottage is a wonder and an admiration among her friends.
Meanwhile, Mrs Packletide has given up hunting ; confiding to her friends who keep asking her why, that the added expenses that comes with it is too much.

 

New Words:

  • Inhabitants: A person or animal that lives in a particular place.
  • Procured: To get something by some effort.
  • Foreground: The part of a scene or picture that is nearest to and in front of the viewer.
  • Swayed: Influence
  • Ostensibly: Supposedly
  • Propitious: Likely to have or produce good results.
  • Rendezvous: A place or point where a group meets.
  • tethered: fastened
  • Antecedents: Predecessor.
  • Post-time: The start of horse race and deadline for placing a bet
  • Les Fauves: French for ' The Wild Animals'
  • Infirmities: The state of being weak or ill because of age.
  • Persistent: Continuing beyond the usual or expected time.
  • Bleat: The loud cry of sheep or goat.
  • Prospect: Hope or likelihood.
  • Stimulated: Encourage or arouse interest.
  • Descended: Develop suddenly.
  • Wholesome: “Better than before”, in general
  • Compelling motive: Aim backed by force and power.
  • Deviation: An action, behavior, or condition that is different from what is usual or expected.
  • Algerian:  A native or inhabitant of Algeria.
  • Aviator: A pilot.
  • Harvest: Collect or obtain for future use.
  • Tiger-claw brooch: A small piece of jewellery in the shape of a tiger’s claw with a pin at the back that is fastened to a woman's clothes.
  • Boast: Possess.
  • Herd-robber: refers to a tiger that hunts and preys on other animals.
  • Crouched: Adopt a position where the knees are bent and the upper body is brought forward and down, typically in order to avoid detection or to defend oneself.
  • Quarry: Prey, victim.
  • Morbid: Unpleasant.
  • Intervention: To become involved in something in order to have an influence.
  • Instinctively: Feelings based on instincts.
  • Speculations: Ideas or guesses about something that is not known.
  • Depreciation: Decrease in value.
  • Commenced: To begin.
  • Ambling: To walk slowly in a free and relaxed way.
  • Succumbed: To die.
  • Senile: Showing a loss of mental ability in old age.       

 

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Question and Answers:

Q1. Why did Mrs. Packletide wish to kill a tiger?

OR

What was the motive behind Mrs. Packletide’s decision to shoot a tiger?

A1. Mrs. Packletide wished to kill a tiger as she was jealous of the accomplishment made by Loona Bimberton. She wanted to outshine Loona by procuring a tiger skin and getting photographs of herself with the haul published in all the leading newspapers.

 

Q2. What made her decide to give a party in Loona Bimberton's honour? What did she intend to give Loona on her birthday?

A2. Mrs. Packletide was jealous of Loona Bimberton and wanted to show her down. She had decided to host a party supposedly in Loona’s honour but actually she wanted to diminish her success by having an edge over her. As she wanted to shoot a tiger, she decided to gift her a brooch in the shape of the tiger’s claw as a birthday gift.

 

Q3. How was the tiger shooting arranged? What kind of a tiger was chosen for the purpose?

A3. The villagers spotted an old, infirm tiger for shooting. A goat was tied at the perfect distance as bait for it. A platform was also constructed from where Mrs. Packletide could easily shoot the tiger.

The tiger chosen was of a good lineage but it was weak and old. Due to old age and illness it had given up hunting bigger animals and restricted itself to hunting smaller domestic animals to satisfy hunger.

 

Q4.  In what way did the villagers help Mrs. Packletide shoot the tiger?

OR

What preparations did the villagers make to arrange for a suitable tiger for Mrs. Packletide and earn a thousand rupees?

A4. The villagers were lured by the reward money of a thousand rupees. They were interested in helping Mrs. Packletide achieve success in her hunting expedition. So, they left no stone unturned. They arranged an old and weak tiger which was easier to shoot. They made sure that the tiger was restricted to the particular jungle area where they were to arrange the shooting. So, they placed cheap goats in the jungle area for the tiger to eat, also, children were deployed at the outskirts of the jungle in order to prevent it from escaping. The village women also hushed their babies from making noise so as not to disturb the tiger from its sleep. They tied a goat as bait at the perfect distance so that the tiger could be shot easily when it approached it. Also, a platform was constructed from where Mrs. Packletide could easily shoot at the tiger.

 

Q5. Who was Miss Mebbin? Was she really devoted to Mrs. Packletide? How did she behave during the tiger shooting?

A5. Miss Mebbin was a paid companion of Mrs. Packletide. She charged money from her to accompany her on her trips. She was a greedy and money minded woman. Still, she behaved like an elder sister to Mrs. Packletide and prevented her from carelessly wasting money. She would stop Mrs. Packletide from wasting money on tips, in restaurants. During the tiger shooting she commented that as the tiger was old and weak, it should have been cheaper. Also, they would not pay for the goat which was bait if the tiger did not eat it.

 

Q7. What comment did Miss Mebbin make after Mrs Packletide had fired the shot? Why did Miss Mebbin make this comment? How did Mrs Packletide react to this comment?

A7. Miss Mebbin discovered that Mrs. Packletide had missed the shot. She had shot the goat which had a gunshot wound. The goat had a painful death due to it. On the other hand, the tiger died silently and had no wound on its body because it died of a heart attack which was caused due to the sudden loud sound of the gun fire.
Miss Mebbin was greedy for money and so she reminded Mrs. Packletide that this fact of her shooting expedition would turn her fame into a mockery.
Mrs. Packletide was angry at Louisa Mebbin as her plans of outshining Loona Bimberton would get defeated.

 

Q8. How did the villagers react to the tiger's death?

A8. The villagers were overjoyed and celebrated when they saw the tiger lying dead. They were happy as the success of Mrs. Packletide’s shooting expedition assured them of earning the reward money. They danced to the beats of the drum and were happy to have earned the reward money.

 

Q9. Do you think Mrs. Packletide was able to achieve her heart's desire? Give reasons for your answer.

A9. I think Mrs. Packletide’s heart’s desire was partially fulfilled. She had successfully procured a tiger skin and got her photographs published in the newspaper. This came to an end when Louisa Mebbin started blackmailing her. She had to pay a big amount to bribe Louisa from giving away her secret. This made her rather disturbed than being happy.

 

Q10. How did Miss Mebbin manage to get her week-end cottage? Why did she plant so many tiger lilies in her garden?

A10. Miss. Mebbin managed to get the week-end cottage by threatening Mrs. Packletide to disclose the truth of her hunting expedition to everyone including Loona.
She planted tiger lilies in the cottage as a thanks giving tribute to the tiger because of which she had managed to get it.

 

Q11.   Do you think the tiger shooting organized by the villagers was a serious affair? Give reasons for your answer.

A11. The tiger shooting was a serious affair for the villagers because they were eager to earn the reward money. They helped Mrs. Packletide by arranging a tiger of ‘respectable antecedents’, got a goat as a bait to lure the tiger.

They even posted children at the outskirts of the jungle day and night to prevent the tiger from escaping. A platform was constructed by them from where she could aim at the tiger easily.

 

Q12. Do you think the writer is trying to make fun of the main characters in the story i.e. Mrs. Packletide, Miss Mebbin and Loona Bimberton? Pick out instances from the story that point to this fact.

A12. The author is humorous in description of the women.

1) Loona’s refusal to attend the lunch party shows her jealousy.

2) Mrs. Packletide’s planning and meticulous execution of the shooting followed by her failure is satirical.

3) Miss. Mebbin’s elder sister attitude is also a satire on the otherwise greedy woman.

 

Q13. A person who is vain is full of self importance and can only think of himself/herself and can go to great lengths to prove his/her superiority. Do you think Mrs Packletide is vain? Give reasons in support of your answer.

A13. Mrs. Packletide is vain as she is only concerned with the jealousy towards Loona. She goes to such an extent as to kill a tiger, put goats as a bait for it, spend money, hire a companion and is not bothered about the losses she is suffering in order to put all this together.

 

Q14. There are many amusing lines in the story. Here are a few of them. Rewrite each one in ordinary prose so that the meaning is retained.

1) Mrs. Packletide had already arranged in her mind the lunch she would give at her house in Curzon Street, ostensibly in Loona Bimberton's honour, with a tiger-skin rug occupying most of the foreground and all of the conversation.

1) Mrs. Packletide had planned a lunch in honour of Loona Bimberton’s success in tiger hunting.

2) Mothers carrying their babies home through the jungle after the day's work in the fields hushed their singing lest they might curtail the restful sleep of the venerable herd-robber.

2) The mothers, on their way through the jungle asked the children to keep quiet so as not to disturb the sleep of the tiger.

3) Louisa Mebbin adopted a protective elder-sister attitude towards money in general, irrespective of nationality or denomination.

3) Louisa was cautious towards monetary expenditure irrespective of the country they were in.

4) Evidently the wrong animal had been hit, and the beast of prey had succumbed to heart-failure, caused by the sudden report of the rifle, accelerated by senile decay .

4) The gun shot had hit the wrong animal and the intended prey was a victim of heart failure due to the sudden sound of gun shot as it suffered ill health due to old age.

5) As for Loona Bimberton, she refused to look at an illustrated paper for weeks, and her letter of thanks for the gift of a tiger-claw brooch was a model of repressed emotions.

5) Loona Bimberton was jealous and so did not look at the photographs of Mrs. Packletide published in the newspaper, her letter of thanks for the gift of the tiger - claw brooch also hinted at it.

 

Q14. What was Mrs. Packletide’s plan to show Loona Binberton down?

A14. Mrs. Packletide had planned to herself shoot a tiger and procure it’s skin. She would then arrange a lunch in Loona’s honour and place the tiger skin as a rug. This would attract the guests’ attention towards her and humiliate Loona. She would further show her down by gifting her a brooch in the shape of a tiger’s claw on her birthday.

 

Q15. Why is Mrs. Packletide compared to Nimrod?

A15. Nimrod, the great grandson of Noah was a character in the Bible. He is known to be a mighty hunter. Mrs. Packletide’s desire to hunt a tiger was so intense that she is appropriately compared to him.

 

Q16. Why was the tiger called “herd – robber” and “venerable”?

A16. The tiger was called “venerable” as it was old and so commanded respect. It had earned the reputation of a “herd – robber” as it hunted many animals to satisfy hunger.

 

Q17. What was the cause of the tiger’s death?

A17. The tiger died due to heart attack. As it was old and infirm, the sudden loud sound of gun fire gave it a heart attack and it died.

 

Q18. How did Louisa Mebbin discover that the tiger had not been shot?

A18. Louisa Mebbin found the goat writhing in pain. On a close look, she found a gunshot wound on it’s body. There was no such wound on the tiger’s body and also, it died peacefully. This led her to conclude that the goat had been shot instead of the tiger and that the tiger had died due to a heart attack.

 

Q19. Why did Loona avoid looking at the newspapers for weeks? How did she react to Mrs. Packletide’s gift of tiger – claw brooch and invitation to luncheon – party?

A19. Loona Bimberton was shocked to know of Mrs. Packletide’s achievement. As she was jealous of her achievement, she did not look at the newspaper which was full of her photographs and achievement. She sent Mrs. Packletide a letter of thanks for the brooch which also reflected her jealousy. She was so furious and jealous that she refused to attend the lunch party.

 

Q20. What is the message conveyed in this story?

A20. The author conveys the message in the story that the people who outsmart others can also be outsmarted. A person’s actions can often backfire on him and he can also be outsmarted.

 

Q21. What kind of tiger did Mrs. Packletide want to kill? Why?

A21. Mrs. Packletide wanted such a tiger which could be killed easily without endangering her life. She did not want much risk or exertion in shooting the tiger. An old, weak and infirm tiger was the perfect one for her shooting.

 

Q22. Mrs. Packletide was not afraid that the secret of her tiger kill will be exposed. Why?

A22. Mrs. Packletide was not afraid that the secret of her tiger kill will be exposed because she was in possession of a tiger skin.

 

Q23. “Six hundred and eighty, freehold. Quite a bargain.” Who makes this statement? In what context?

A23. This statement is made by Louisa Mebbin. She is talking about the price of a week – end cottage. She wants Mrs. packletide to pay the price of the cottage as she does not have the money. She calls it “quite a bargain” as she feels that the amount is very less in comparison to the secret which she has to keep.

 

Q24. How was the name of Miss Mebbin’s cottage ironical?

A24. Miss Mebbin named her cottage “Les Fauves”. It is a French word which means the wild animals. The irony in the name is from the fact that although a tiger is supposed to be wild, the particular tiger due to which she got the cottage was not so. It was weak and disabled due to old age and had given up hunting big animals.

 

Q25. Read the extract and answer the questions which follow:

Mrs. Packletide had already arranged in her mind the lunch she would give at her house in Curzon Street.

a) In whose honour did Mrs. Packletide wish to host the lunch at her house? What prompted her to plan this move?

b) What trait of Mrs. Packletide’s character does the idea of hosting the lunch bring out?

c) What do you understand by the expression “arranged in her mind”?

A25. a) Mrs. Packletide wished to host the lunch in honour of Loona Bimberton. Her desire to outshine Loona by achieving a greater target and show her down was her motive behind it.

b) This idea of hers shows that she can go to any extent and spend unlimited money in jealousy and rivalry.

c) The expression “arranged in her mind” means that she had already planned out the details of the lunch party mentally.

 

Q26. Answer the following question in 80 – 100 words:

‘In a world that is supposed to be chiefly swayed by hunger and by love Mrs. Packletide was an exception; her movements and motives were largely governed by dislike of Loona Bimberton.’

On the basis of the above extract describe the kind of relationship that Mrs. Packletide shares with Mrs. Loona Bimberton. What values govern it? How do these values harm both the ladies? What values do you think would have saved both of them from such an ugly situation?

A26.  Mrs. Packletide and Loona Bimberton hated each other. They were in competition with each other. The prime aim of Mrs. Packletide’s life was to outshine Loona and show her down. She was willing to go to any extent and spent as much money in order to humiliate Loona. Mrs. Packletide is jealous of Loona’s achievement and in order to be more successful than her, she makes a wasteful expenditure of money. Loona is also jealous when she comes to know that Mrs. Packletide has achieved more than her. She refuses the invitation to the luncheon – party hosted in her honour.

I think that if they would have been introspective and realized the outcome of their acts, they could have prevented fooling themselves in future. They were being fleeced by others just to guard their secrets which would help them outshine each other.

 

Q27. Briefly bring out the similarities in the characters of Mrs. Packletide and Loona Bimberton.

A27. The women are full of jealousy and rivalry. They have such great ambitions to outshine each other that they are willing to go to any extent to achieve it. All their acts are driven by this jealousy.

 

Q28. Who gains the most out of the vanity match between the two rival ladies in “Mrs. Packletide’s Tiger” and how?

A28. In the story “Mrs. Packletide’s Tiger” it is Louisa Mebbin who gains the most. Firstly, as she is a paid companion of Mrs. Packletide, she earns by accompanying her on her trips. Secondly, as she knows Mrs. Packletide’s secret of the tiger’s death, she extorts money for guarding it. This shows that Louisa is not driven by jealousy and rivalry. As she has no weakness and secrets, she is able to blackmail and extort money from Mrs. Packletide. In this way, Louisa Mebbin makes the most of the rivalry between the two women.

 

Q29. What important message is given out by the author in the story?

A29. The author talks about the negative aspects of human behaviour like greed and jealousy. The people are driven by jealousy, rivalry, greed  and fear and waste time and money in meaning less pursuits. He displays human greed and lust for money through the character of Louisa Mebbin. He highlights the fact of human exploitation of beasts. People like Mrs. Packletide and Loona Bimberton indulge in trophy hunting. They do not realize the harshness of their acts which they merely commit in order to outshine each other.
The story conveys the message that we should not involve ourselves in jealousy or hatred. We must resist greed and money should be spent wisely.  

 

Q. Choose extracts from the story that illustrate the character of the people in it.

1. Mrs. Packletide had offered a thousand rupees for the opportunity of shooting a tiger without over-much risk or exertion

Ans. vain

2. Mrs. Packletide faced the cameras with a light heart, and her pictured fame reached from the pages of the Texas Weekly Snapshot to the illustrated Monday supplement of the Novoe Vremya.

Ans. Jealous

3. "If it's an old tiger I think you ought to get it cheaper. A thousand rupees is a lot of money.“

Ans. Manuplative.

4. Louisa Mebbin adopted a protective elder-sister attitude towards money in general, irrespective
of nationality or denomination

Ans. Shrewd

5. "How amused every one would be if they knew what really happened," said Louisa Mebbin a few days after the ball.

Ans. Shrewd

6. Louisa Mebbin's pretty week-end cottage, christened by her "Les Fauves,“ and gay in summer-time with its garden borders of tiger-lilies, is the wonder and admiration of her friends

Ans. Materialistic

7. As for Loona Bimberton, she refused to look at an illustrated paper for weeks, and her letter of thanks for the gift of a tiger-claw brooch was a model of repressed emotions

Ans. Jealous

8. there are limits beyond which repressed emotions become dangerous.

Ans. Spiteful

 

Q. An oxymoron is a figure of speech that combines normally-contradictory terms. The most common form involves an adjective-noun combination of two words. The story has a number of oxymorons. Identify them.

Ans. The Oxymoron in the chapter are:

Deviation towards

Elaborate carelessness

Venerable herd – robber

Beast of prey

Pardonably annoyed

There are limits beyond which

Disagreeably pleasant laugh