Previous Year Madhyamik  English Question – 2019, WBBSE


   (Reading Comprehension (Seen)]

1. Read the passage carefully and answer the questions that follow :

“What have you written, Father ?” Swami asked apprehensively.

“Nothing for you. Give it to your headmaster and go to your class.”

“Have you written anything about our teacher Samuel?”

“Yes. Plenty of things.”

“What has he done, Father ?”

“Everything is there in the letter. Give it to your headmaster.”

Swami went to school feeling that he was the worst boy on earth. His conscience bothered him. He wasn’t at all sure if his description of Samuel had been accurate. He felt he had mixed up the real and the imagined.

Swami stopped on the roadside to make up his mind about Samuel. Samuel was not such a bad man after all. Personally, he was much more friendly than the other teachers. Swami also felt Samuel had a special regard for him.

Swami’s head was dizzy with confusion. He could not decide if Samuel really deserved the allegations made against him in the letter. The more he thought of Samuel, the more Swami grieved for him. To recall Samuel’s dark face, his thin moustache, unshaven cheek and yellow coat filled Swaminathan with sorrow.

A. Write the correct alternative to complete the following sentences: [1×5=5]

(a) Swami’s father wrote the letter to Swami’s ______________________

(i) friends (ii) headmaster (iii) teacher (iv) mother

(b) The letter made Swami feel ________________________

(i) happy (ii) sad (iii) excited (iv) worried

(c) Swami stopped on his way to school to decide whether Samuel was a/an __________________

(i) bad person (ii) good and friendly person (iii) honest person (iv) dishonest person

(d) Swami felt dizzy because he was __________________________

(i) excited (ii) indifferent (iii) afraid (iv) puzzled

(e) The more Swami thought of Samuel the more ___________________

(i) aggrieved he felt (ii) cheerful he felt (iii) disappointed he felt (iv) angry he felt

B. Complete the following sentences with information from the text: [1×3=3]

(i) Swami’s father asked him to _____________________________________________________

(ii) While going to school Swami felt ________________________________________________

(iii) Other teachers were not as ____________________________________________________

C. Answer the following questions: 2×2=4

(i) Why did Swami’s conscience bother him?

Ans. __________________________________________________________________________

(ii) How did Swami recall Samuel’s appearance?

Ans. _________________________________________________________________________

2. Read the poem and answer the questions that follow :

Once I crept in an oakwood – I was looking for a stag.

I met an old woman there all knobbly stick and rag.

She said: ‘I have your secret here inside my little bag.’

Then she began to cackle and I began to quake,

She opened up her little bag and I came twice awake –

Surrounded by a staring tribe and me tied to a stake.

They said: ‘We are the oak trees and your own true family,

We are chopped down, we are torn up, you do not blink an eye,

Unless you make a promise now-now you are going to die,

‘Whenever you see an oak tree felled, swear now you will plant two,

Unless you swear the black oak bark will wrinkle over you

And root you among the oaks where you were born but never grew,

This was my dream beneath the boughs, the dream that altered me.

When I came out of the oakwood, back to human company,

My walk was the walk of a human child, but my heart was a tree.

A. Write the correct alternative to complete the following sentences: [1×4=4]

(a) The young child met ______________________________________

(i) a forester (ii) an old man (iii) an old woman (iv) a stag

(b) The old woman was _______________________________________

(i) very smart (ii) looking nervous (iii) richly dressed (iv) unsteady and poorly dressed

(c) The oak trees complained that ______________________________

(i) the old woman cackled (ii) they are chopped down, torn up but the humans remain indifferent (iii) they are not watered every day (iv) they are tied to a stake

(d) A ‘staring tribe’ refers to _______________________

(i) local inhabitants (ii) the primitive people (iii) homeless people (iv) the oak trees

B. State whether the following statements are ‘True’ or ‘False’. Write ‘T’ for True and ‘F’ for False in the boxes on the right-hand side. Provide sentences/ phrases/words in support of your answer: [2×2=4]

(a) The oak trees told the child in his dream that whenever an oak tree is cut down he should plant two oak saplings.

Supporting statement __________________________________________________________

(b) When the child woke up from his dream he forgot all about the oak trees.

Supporting statement _________________________________________________________


3. Read the following passage and answer the questions that follow :

It is a known fact that children generally emulate adults. When a child imitates elder smoking by holding a pencil between his/her tiny fingers, most of us find it quite cute. We fail to realise that this harmless imitation often results in actual smoking when they grow up. So it is time to take a pause and think about its consequences. According to WHO data, tobacco kills more than seven million people each year. While more than six million of those deaths are the result of direct tobacco use, many non-smokers die because they are exposed to second-hand smoke.

Over eighty per cent of individuals, who start smoking during adolescence, will continue to smoke in adulthood, while one-third of them will die prematurely due to smoking-related diseases like cancer, heart disease and chronic lung diseases. Experimentation by children can rapidly escalate into heavy smoking.

Experts say that unless urgent action is taken immediately, the annual death toll could rise to more than eight million by 2030. This sure is a gloomy and cheerless world that we are leaving behind to our future generations. So it is time to motivate youngsters to stay away from this deadly habit.

Dr Shyama Chona, the educationist says, “The best way to motivate them to stay away from smoking is to involve them in some activities.” She suggests that schools can organise events like sports, drama and story-telling sessions. Such participatory learning is very effective because it dissuades kids from smoking when they themselves propagate its bad effects.

Parents have a big role to play when it comes to influencing their kids. Theatre director Arvind Gaur says that a smoking parent can never tell his/her child not to smoke because that would be too hypocritical.

[Adapted from an article published in The Times of India dated March 14, 2018]

A. Tick the right answer: [1×6=6]

(i) We find it cute when –

(a) a child imitates an adult – ☐

(b) an adult imitates a child – ☐

(c) a child copies the elder smoking by holding a pencil between his/her tiny fingers – ☐

(d) a child actually smokes – ☐

(ii) According to WHO data, each year direct use of tobacco kills –

(a) seven million people – ☐

(b) more than seven million people – ☐

(c) less than six million people – ☐

(d) more than six million people – ☐

(iii) In the opinion of experts urgent action should be taken –

(a) immediately – ☐

 (b) after one year – ☐

(c) by 2030 – ☐

(d) by the parents – ☐

(iv) Dr. Shyama Chona is –

(a) a medical practitioner – ☐

(b) a psychologist – ☐

(c) a social worker – ☐

(d) an educationist – ☐

(v) ‘Deadly habit’ in paragraph 3 refers to –

(a) sports – ☐

(b) smoking – ☐

(c) play-acting – ☐

(d) story-telling – ☐

(vi) A smoking parent can – ☐

(a) always tell his child to smoke – ☐

(b) tell his child to be hypocritical – ☐

(c) never tell his child not to smoke – ☐

(d) tell his child to be honest and truthful – ☐

B. Each of the following statements is either ‘True’ or ‘False’. ‘T for True and ‘F’ for False in the boxes on the right-hand side. Also pick out suitable line(s) or phrase(s) from the passage in support of your answers : [(1+1)x3=6]

(i) A child never imitates elder smoking.

Supporting sentence: ______________________________________________________

(ii) Many non-smokers die because of passive smoking.

Supporting sentence: _______________________________________________________

(iii) Our future generations will be left in a dark and hopeless world due to smoking.

Supporting sentence: _______________________________________________________

C. Answer the following questions: 2×4=8

(i) How does a child imitate elder smoking?


(ii) Name some of the smoking-related diseases.

Ans. _____________________________________________________________________

(iii) Why should urgent action be taken immediately to stop smoking?

Ans. ____________________________________________________________________

(iv) How can children be motivated to stay away from smoking?

Ans. ____________________________________________________________________



4. Write the correct alternative to fill in the blanks: [1×3=3]

When Mrs Gupta ……………… (return/returned/was returning) home she noticed at once that thieves ………….. (enter/have entered/had entered) her house during her absence. The local police station …………….(was informed/had informed/was informed) immediately.

5. Do as directed :

A. Fill in the blanks with appropriate articles and prepositions: [1×3=3]

Sunil, …………. Young diver jumped …………….. the river and saved the child ………………drowning.

B.  [1×3=3]

(i) He has worked out the answers carefully. (Change the voice)


(ii) You do not take care of your health. You may fall ill. (Join into a single sentence using an adverb clause)


(iii) “What have you written, Sachin ?” The teacher said. (Change into Indirect Speech)


C. Choose the correct phrasal verbs from the list given below to replace the words underlined. Write the correct phrasal verbs in the boxes on the right-hand side changing the form where necessary. There is one extra phrasal verb in the list. [1×3=3]

(i) Kshudiram sacrificed his life for his motherland.

(ii) Police are investigating the case.

(iii) I am trying to find a job.

[look into, come by, look for, give up]

6. Given below are the meanings of four words which you will find in the passage in Question No. 3. Find out the words and write them in the appropriate boxes on the right-hand side: [2×4=8]

(i) imitate [ ]

(ii) increase rapidly [ ]

(iii) discourage [ ]

(iv) spread and promote an idea widely [ ]



7. Write a story (within 100 words) using the given hints. Give a title to the story. [10]

Three children collecting green mangoes near a railway track – one sees a crack on rails – hears a train coming – sense danger – tears his red shirt – three pieces – waves like flags – driver – stops accident avoided – children rewarded.

8. Write a letter (within 100 words) to the editor of an English daily stating reasons why plastic carry bags should be banned. [10]

Your letter may include the following points:

Large-scale use of plastic carry bags – choking sewerage system – waterlogging on roads – drains overflowing – pollution of land and ocean – must be banned to save environment – use of substitutes like jute bags and paper bags.

9. Your school is going to host an inter-school drama competition. Suppose you are the Cultural Secretary of your school. Write a notice (within 100 words) calling students to participate in the competition. Mention the time, date and venue of the competition. Your notice should be countersigned by the Headmistress / Headmaster of your school. [10]




1. Fill in the blanks with appropriate forms of the words in brackets : [1×5=5]

(a) Mrs. Bhimani is well known for her ……………………. (kind).

(b) ………………………. (honest) is the best policy.

(c) Sumona completed the race ………………………….. (successful)

(d) The gentleman is famous for his ……………………… (wise)

(e) Mr. Soren is an ……………………….. (honour) man.

2. Add a prefix with the following words to make antonyms: [1×5=5]

(a) Happy …………………………….

(b) Please ………………………………

(c) Movable ………………………………

(d) Rational ……………………………………..

(e) Logical …………………………………….

[dis ………………., un ………………….. , ir …………………, im ……………….., il ……………. ]

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