Question # 1 what type of life did the Happy Prince lead? The Happy Prince lived in the palace of Sans-Souci where he led a life full of pleasure and delights. There was a wall around the palace that made it impossible for him to have a look around to know the true realities of life. His whole life circled around different joys. He led the dance parties in the palace and led the hunting parties in the forests. He did not know what the cares and worries were. He remained engrossed like all the other members of royal families in his pursuit of pleasure. He was so happy that his courtiers gave him the title of the Happy Prince and happy indeed he was. So he lived and so he died. After his death his statue was erected on a high column above the city so he could see the ugliness and misery spread around him and for the first time he became aware of the life led by poor people. Question # 2 what did he see from the high column above the city? Happy Prince stood high above the city and could survey the whole city from that high position. He could notice all the misery and suffering of poor people. He could see the deprived people dying without a morsel of bread. He could register the agony of sick and helpless kids. The sapphires in his eyes reflected to him the miserable young men who were pining under the slabs of want and hunger. His mortal eyes were closed after his death but his eyes made of sapphire could take these dismal scenes directly to his soul. His heart made of lead was wrung with helplessness because he was tied to a pedestal and could not move. He wanted to relieve the people of their wretched state of life but could not do so. His heart wept with his feelings for the poor folks and their hard life. So there, above the column, he was in a better position to survey the true meaning of living in this world and then he understood the cost of existence paid by the poor and downtrodden majority of human population throughout the world. Question # 3 how did the little swallow helps the Happy Prince? One day there came a little swallow to take rest in the feet of Happy Prince. The winter had started and all the other swallows had flown away to Egypt by this time of the year but the little swallow was left behind because he had been in love with a little marine plant that was the most beautiful reed. His attachment with the reed was gradually weakened by his sense of loneliness as his friends and family had flown away and moreover the reed was very silent by nature. He loved to travel but the reed was a homespun creature and did not like to travel so he left her and decided to follow his clan to Egypt. Though when the little swallow came to the city it was already night and he had no choice but to sit under the feet of the Happy Prince. As soon as he prepared to sleep a large drop of water that was followed by some more drops fell on him and drenched him fully. The swallow was astonished as there was no cloud on the sky but when he looked up he was even more astonished to see the statue of the Happy Prince crying. He asked the Happy Prince about the reason of his woe, and the Happy Prince told him about the sufferings of people that had harrowed his heart. He wanted to help these helpless people but couldn’t do so as his feet were fastened to a pedestal. The Happy Prince told the swallow that he could see a sick boy and his helpless mother through an open window. The boy was tossing with fever and asking for oranges but the poor mother had nothing to give him. The Happy Prince requested the swallow to stay with him for one night and take the ruby out of his sword hilt and convey it to the unfortunate house. The swallow hesitated as the winter was setting in swiftly and it was impossible for a swallow to stay alive in such conditions. The repeated requests of the Happy Prince however melted his heart and he was ready to comply with his demand so he took out the ruby and consigned it to the sick boy’s home. The next day when he tried to set out for Egypt again the Happy Prince detained him by telling the story of a distressed student whose room was very cold and he was very hungry. The prince was so sad about it that the swallow was compelled to stop again at the risk of his life. The Happy Prince urged the swallow to pluck out the sapphires from his eyes but the swallow hesitated. The Happy Prince insisted so much that he plucked out the eye and delivered it to the young student. In the same way, the other sapphire from his eye was given away to the girl who had thrown her matches in gutter next day. At this stage the little swallow decided to stay with the Happy Prince because he had become blind by then. He flew round the city and told the painful stories of poor people’s distress to Happy Prince who asked him to leaf out the gold from his statue so that the misery of people can be lessened to some extent. During all this time the swallow had become very weak and cold. One day he flew up to the shoulder of the Happy Prince and asked him to let him kiss on his hand as he was going to the House of Death. After saying these words he fell dead in his feet. In this way he laid down his tender life to alleviate the misery and sufferings of poor people. Question # 4 what is the end of this fantastic story? The swallow and the Happy Prince collaborated to reduce a little bit of people’s troubles by giving those jewels and gold that was gilded on the statue of the Happy Prince. During this time the Happy Prince had been blinded. The extreme winter had set in and the streets were full of silver cover of snow. The wind was extremely cold and the little swallow was without any sort of protection. He didn’t have much to eat or keep himself warm. He tried a lot to hold on but at last he knew that he was going to die. He sat on the Happy Prince’s shoulder and told him that he was going to say ‘Good Bye” to him and that he wanted to kiss his hands. The Happy Prince thought that he was going to Egypt after all but the little swallow corrected him by saying that he was going to the House of Death. He said these words and fell down dead in Happy Prince’s feet. At the same moment the heart of the Happy Prince snapped right in two. The authorities of the town surveyed and declared that the Happy Prince didn’t look any better than a beggar so his statue should be removed from the column. The Mayor and the Councillors quarrelled because each of them wanted a statue of his own at the place of the Happy Prince. They melted the body of the statue but no furnace could touch his heart so they threw the broken lead heart on a heap where the dead body of the little swallow was already lying. The God ordered his angels to bring the most precious things of the world and they took the broken lead heart of the Happy Prince and the dead little swallow to the Eden garden where they would live forever as the reward of their true love and sympathy for the helpless people. They had sacrificed their lives for the poor people so they attained the eternal life in paradise. Question # 5 this story is a social criticism wrapped in the mould of a fairy tale. Discuss. Oscar Wilde is a socially conscious writer who presents a mirror to the society and highlights its ugly reflection. Basically this story is written in the form of a fairy tale. The atmosphere, setting and the characters are unreal and fantastic. The tool of pathetic fallacy has been masterfully employed on a larger scale. The statue is made to behave like a living man and the bird also plays the role of a compassionate helper to the prince as well as the people. The attachment of the swallow with a reed also is a funny exaggeration but it affords a hidden satire when the writer talks about the reasons of swallow’s desertion of the reed. He quotes swallow’s friends and family saying that they didn’t like their union, as the reed didn’t have any dowry and had too many relations. This is truly a mirror to the lovers who have their vested interests in the matter of love. Then the swallow makes lame excuses like any disinclined lover and accuses the reed that she flirts with air and doesn’t submit to his wishes of traveling and talking. The town Councilor who wishes to be considered artistic and practical at the same time calls the Happy Prince as beautiful as a weathercock that is a ridiculous allusion. The Mathematical master scolds the Charity Children as he disapproves of their having dreams. A disappointed man murmurs that he is glad that at least someone in the world is quite happy. The ornithology professor has also been ridiculed at his concern for the presence of a swallow in winter and his use of difficult words in his letter to the local newspaper. The Queen’s maids-of –honor are also described as being worldly and selfish. The apathy of authorities has been mentioned indirectly by depicting the suffering of the poor people. The swallow wants to fly away to Egypt with his family who will be diving in the Nile and making nests in the Pyramids but he stays with the Happy Prince. In this way the writer lashes the human conscience that the hearts of a little swallow and of a statue are stimulated to see the human suffering but the people in authority don’t pay any attention to the distress of public. The life of the Happy Prince when alive is the exact description of the reality because in this world some people revel in extreme joy and pleasure while the others groan under the extreme suffering and poverty. This fantasy conveys the true purpose of the writer and depicts all the aspects of life in this world such as poverty, hypocrisy and exploitation. The end of the story also is ironic as the statue of the Happy Prince becomes ugly in appearance but it achieves the spiritual beauty. The bird loses his earthly existence but gets the cheerful eternal life and becomes a timeless symbol of love and sacrifice. So the story “mirrors the modern life in a form remote from reality”. Q.1. Describe the statue of the Happy Prince Ans. The statue of the Happy Prince stood on a tall pillar. He was covered with gold. He had sapphires for his eyes. He had a large ruby on the hilt of his sword Q.2. what made the statue of the Happy Prince cry? Ans. The statue of the Happy Prince was on a high pillar, He could see the sorrows and misery of people. He saw a seamstress. Her son was ill. But she had nothing to give her except the river water. This made the Happy Prince cry. Q.3. Why was the statue called the Happy Prince? Ans. This was the statue of a Prince. When he was alive he lived in a palace. He did not know what tears Were. There was no sorrow in his life. He was always happy He lived and died as a Happy Prince. So his statue was called the Happy Prince. Q.4. Why did the Happy Prince request the swallow to stay with him for the night ? Ans. The Happy prince was very kind. He saw that the poor seamstress was very sad. Her son was ill. She had nothing to give him except the river water. The Happy Prince wanted to help her. He wanted to send her a ruby. But he could not move. So he requested the swallow to stay with him for the night Q.5. How did the swallow give comfort to the son of the seamstress? Ans. The swallow came to the house of the seamstress. He found that her son was suffering from fever. He took pity on him. He fanned the boy with his wings. The son felt comfort. He fell asleep. Q.6. What was the last wish of the swallow? Ans. The swallow knew that her end had come. He ew on to the shoulder of the Happy Prince and said, “wish to kiss your hand.” The Happy Prince asked him to kiss him on the lips. He kissed on his lips and then died. Short Answer Type Questions (30 to 40 words) Q1. Describe the statue of the Happy Prince as depicted in the beginning of the story. Ans:-The statue of the Happy Prince was mounted on a tall column high above the city. It had thin leaves of ne gold gilded all over. Two bright sapphires were its eyes and a large red ruby glowed on its sword hilt. Q2. Where was the swallow going? Why did he decide not to go there? Ans:-The swallow was going to Egypt to join his friends who had already reached there six weeks ago. Initially he had stopped by only for a night to break his long journey but later got so attached to the Happy Prince that he could not bear to see him crying. He stayed back to be his messenger. Q3. Why did the swallow stop at the city? Where did he put up for the night? Ans:-The swallow stopped at the city to break his long journey to Egypt. His friends had already reached there. He alighted between the feet of the statue of the Happy Prince for a night’s stay. Q4. What happened when the little swallow was getting ready to sleep? Ans:-A large drop of water fell on the little swallow when he was getting ready to sleep. He considered it a curious thing because it was a clear, bright, starlit, and cloudless night with no indication of rain. Q5. What were the drops of rain actually? Why did they fall? Ans:-The drops of rain were actually the tears that rolled down the Happy Prince’s sapphire eyes. The Prince’s sapphire eyes shed them because he was sad to see the poverty and misery of the city dwellers. Q6. What made the statue of the Happy Prince cry? Ans:-The Happy Prince had never seen or experienced sorrow all his life. But after his death, his statue was put up on a high pedestal from where he could see the ugliness and misery of his land. This made him cry with sorrow. Q7. When did the Prince rst ask the swallow to stay on? Why? Ans:-The Prince rst asked the swallow to stay on for the night when he had seen the poor seamstress and her sick son. The Prince’s feet were fastened to the pedestal and he could not move. So, he needed the help of swallow in bringing relief and joy to the seamstress and her hungry and sick son. Q8. Why did the swallow refuse to carry ruby to the seamstress? Why did he nally agree to do it? Ans:-The swallow rst refused to carry the ruby to the seamstress because he wanted to be with his friends who were in Egypt. Moreover, when the Happy Prince expected help for the little boy of the seamstress, the bird said that he did not like boys. However, he agreed to stay for the night on seeing the Happy Prince in such a sorrowful state. Q9. How did the swallow reach the seamstress’s house? Ans:-The swallow ew over roofs of the town and passed the cathedral tower with white marbled angels sculptured on it. He ew over the palace and the river before he nally reached the seamstress’s house. Q10. What did the swallow overhear while going to the seamstress’s house? Ans:-As he passed by the palace, the swallow saw a beautiful girl come out into the balcony. The swallow overheard her saying that she hoped her dress would be ready for the state ball and that she had ordered owers to be embroidered on it but the seamstresses were a lazy lot. Q11. Why and how did the Happy Prince help the seamstress? Ans:-The Happy Prince decided to help the poor seamstress who was dead tired and whose son was hungry and lay in fever. The poor woman had no money to feed her son and get him medicine. She only gave him water to drink. The Prince wanted the swallow to carry the ruby from his sword hilt so that the seamstress could get rid of her poverty and buy her son food and medicine. Q12. Why does the Happy Prince send a ruby for the seamstress? Ans:- What does the swallow do in the seamstress’s house? (Textual) The Happy Prince sends a ruby for the seamstress to help her get over her poverty so that she could buy food and medicine for her son. The swallow laid the great ruby on the table beside the woman’s thimble and ew round the bed, fanning the boy’s forehead with his wings. Q13. Why couldn’t the poor seamstress sit beside her ailing son? Ans:-The poor seamstress had to work endlessly to complete a gown that had to be worn by the Queen’s loveliest maid of honour at the court ball. Tired and hungry, she fell o to sleep while her ailing son tossed on the bed alone. Q14. What change came over the bird on his return from the seamstress’s house? Why? Ans:-After returning from the seamstress’s house, the swallow felt curious that despite the cold he was feeling quite warm. The Happy Prince told him that it was so because he had done a good deed. Q15. What did the swallow do before planning for his ight towards Egypt on the second night? Ans:- The swallow bathed in the river at dawn and then spent the day to visit the city’s monuments. He also sat for a long time on top of the church steeple. Finally, he went to the Prince to ask him if he had any commissions for Egypt. had gone blind. The Prince would then tell him to take o the gold from his body, leaf by leaf, and give it to the poor and needy. Q16. How did the swallow become the Prince’s eyes? Ans:- The swallow stayed back with the blind Prince. He would y over the city and see its people in all their colors. He would report their miseries and sufferings to the Prince. Then, on the Prince’s orders, he would pluck the golden leaves from his statue and give them to the needy. Q17. The little swallow grew colder and colder but kept up his determination. How did the bird show his great strength and courage? Ans:-The bird grew cold because of the snow and the frost but he did not leave the Happy Prince. He would eat crumbs from a baker’s shop and keep himself warm by apping his wings. He showed great strength and courage by staying on beside the Happy Prince in spite of the bitter cold and the consequent risk to his life. Q18. What did the swallow do when he realised that he was going to die? How did the Prince respond? Ans:-On realising that he was going to die, the swallow gathered his remaining strength and ew up to the prince’s shoulder. He bid him goodbye and sought permission to kiss his hand. The Prince thought that the swallow was going to leave for Egypt. He welcomed this decision and asked the swallow to kiss him on his lips instead, as he loved him. Q19. Why a cracking sound was heard when the swallow died? What happened when the little swallow fell down dead at the feet of the Happy Prince? Ans:-The Happy Prince loved the swallow dearly. So when the bird kissed the Prince and fell down dead at his feet, the latter’s leaden heart broke into two with a curious cracking sound. Q20. What happened to the Prince’s heart? Why? Ans:-As the swallow fell dead at the Prince’s feet, the latter’s lead heart broke into two. This happened because the Prince loved the bird dearly. Although it was a dreadful winter, still the heart broke, for it was deeply hurt. Q21. What made the Happy Prince look shabby and beggarly? Why did the Mayor and Town Councilors comment that the Prince looked ‘little better than a beggar’? Ans:- The gold leaves that covered the statue of the Happy Prince were gradually given away in charity by him. His sapphire eyes and the red ruby on the sword hilt too were given away. This made him look shabby and beggarly Q22. Why did the Town Councilors decide to pull down the statue of the Happy Prince? How did the Mayor and his Councilors react on seeing the statue of the Happy Prince? Ans:-The Mayor and the Town Councilors were shocked to see the dull looking statue of the Happy Prince bereft of his sapphire eyes, ruby studded sword hilt and gold leaves. They decided to pull it down because it looked much too shabby and beggarly, and was no longer beautiful or useful. Q23. What strange thing was observed by the overseer? Ans:-The statue of the Happy Prince was pulled down and put to melt in a furnace. The overseer at the foundry noticed a strange thing at this time. The broken lead heart of the Prince did not melt and had to be thrown away in dust. Q24. What happened to the leaden heart of the Happy Prince after it was thrown away? Ans:- Because it did not melt in the foundry, the Happy Prince’s lead heart was thrown away on a dust heap where the swallow also lay dead. Later on God’s Angels chose the heart as well as the dead swallow as the two most precious things in the city. Q25. What are the two most precious things mentioned in the story? Why are they precious? What did the Angel consider the two most precious things in the city? Why? Ans:-The two most precious things mentioned in the story are the kind lead-heart of the Happy Prince and the dead swallow. They are precious because the Angel chooses them for their virtues and noble deeds, and God gives them a place in his garden of Paradise. Q26. What is the moral of the story “The Happy Prince”? Ans:- The moral of the story is that charity and compassion can endear us to God. Love, sacrifice and pity should be the governing virtues of mankind. Outward beauty is superficial and a heart that feels for others is the noblest heart. 27. Describe the statue of the Happy Prince. Ans.The statue was covered with thin leaves of ne gold. It had two bright sapphires for its eyes. There was a large red ruby on its sword-hilt. 28. What made the Happy Prince cry ? Ans. The Happy Prince could see all the misery of the city. He cried on seeing the sorrows of the poor people. 29. To whom did the prince send his ruby and why ? Ans.The prince sent his ruby to a poor seamstress. Her son was ill. He was asking for oranges. But his mother had no money. So the prince wanted to help her. 30. How did the prince and the swallow enable the playwright to nish his work ? Ans.The playwright was feeling very cold and hungry. He could not nish his play. The prince asked the swallow to take one of his sapphires to the playwright. Thus they helped him to nish his work. 31. How did the prince help the match-girl? What was the result? Ans.The prince sent the sapphire to the match-girl. She became very happy. She ran home laughing. 32. Why did the swallow decide not to leave the prince? Ans. The prince had given the sapphires from his eyes to the poor. He was now completely blind. Therefore, the swallow decided to stay with him. 33. How did the prince and the swallow help the poor? Ans. The swallow told the prince about the misery of the people. The prince asked the swallow to pluck gold and jewels from his body. He asked the swallow to give all these to the poor. 34. What did the angel consider ‘the two most precious things in the city’? Ans. He considered the lead heart and the dead swallow the two most precious things in the city. 35. When the prince was alive, he did not know what tears were. Why? Ans.The prince lived in a palace. No sorrow was allowed to enter there. The prince never had the taste of sorrow. So he did not know what tears were. 36. What was the boy’s mother doing when the swallow ew into the room? Where did he put the ruby? Why did the boy feel cool? Ans.The boy’s mother had fallen asleep. The swallow put the ruby on a table near the woman. He fanned the boy with his wings. The boy now felt cool. 37. What made the playwright happy ? Ans.The playwright saw a sapphire lying near him on the table. He thought it had been sent by some great admirer. This made him happy. 38. Describe the sufferings of the poor people in the city. How did the Happy Prince help them? Ans. The poor people in the city lived a miserable life. There was a poor seamstress. She had nothing to give her son who was sick. So the Happy Prince sent a ruby for her. There was a playwright who had no rewood to keep himself warm. The prince sent him a sapphire. There was a match-girl who had no shoes or stockings. Her matches had fallen in the gutter. She was crying. The prince sent her his second sapphire. There were hungry and homeless children. The prince sent them all the gold leaves he had on his body. 39.. Give a brief character-sketch of the Happy Prince . Ans. The Happy Prince saw the misery of the poor people. His heart melted with pity for them. Their sufferings brought tears in his eyes. He gave away his ruby, sapphires and all the gold for the poor. He became blind. His body looked ugly. But he was happy at heart because he had given away his all for the poor. The Happy Prince came to know that real happiness lay in the service of the poor. God blessed him and kept him in His city of gold. 40 Give a brief character-sketch of the swallow. Ans. The swallow was every inch like the Happy Prince. It had a very kind heart. It saw tears in the prince’s eyes. Its heart melted with pity. It wanted to help the prince. Therefore, it gave up its idea of going to Egypt. It stayed with the prince in cold nights. When the prince became blind, the swallow, decided to live with him forever. It died one day. But even the death could not separate it from the prince. It was taken to heaven along with the prince.