Saturday, December 31, 2016

THE STORY OF THE SIMPLETON (Elementary- Intermediate level)

There was once an aged couple, who had a foolish son, who one day begged them to give him money to buy an ox with. And, owing to his persistence, though they knew him to be simple, they gave him sixteen rupees and let him go. And, as he went, he found a fine ox grazing where three roads meet; and, putting his rupees down on the road, he bound the ox and drove it away. Presently, he stopped to rest, and while he was dozing, his ox ran away. So he began searching all through the jungle for the missing animal.
At last he found a fine stag, and thinking that to be his ox, chased it through the forest till by chance its horns got caught in a thicket. So he tied a rope round its horns, and to that tied another rope, and so on till he got home. And when his old mother asked him if he had bought his ox "Haven't I, just," said he, "just help me to pull and see!" On this, the three of them pulled at the rope, hand over hand, and presently the stag made his appearance kicking and struggling, at which they were mightily afraid. However, they killed the stag, and gave of its flesh to the neighbours to eat.
On which the simpleton went about and told the villagers that they had eaten of cow's flesh. But, fortunately, knowing he was a simpleton, no one believed a word he said.
Another time, when the simpleton was grown a bit bigger, he again begged money of his parents: this time that he might get him a wife. And since he would not take a refusal, he got his sixteen rupees and set out afresh in search of a wife. Finally, he went and sat at a place where the village women drew water. And when a pretty maiden came down with her vessel on her hip to draw water, he seized her and carried her off.
And when he got tired, he stopped to rest under a tree. And it happened that a man driving a plough ox was also resting there, and the maiden sat there crying her very eyes out for grief at having been carried off. So the man with the ox asked the simpleton "Where did you get that girl? Did you have a look at her before you took her, or didn't you?" To which the simpleton replied "She seemed a pretty girl, so I put down sixteen rupees at the bathing place and carried her off." On which the wise man said: "You must be blind. The girl's pretty enough, but don't you see that both her eyes are burst. You clearly don't see straight. Just see how the water is flowing from both her eyes." On hearing this, the simpleton offered to exchange the girl for the ox. But the other pretended to be unwilling, till, after much persistence on the part of the simpleton, he cried:
"There, take it, take it!" So the exchange was affected, and each went on his way mightily satisfied.
And, as the simpleton went his ways, he found a man seated under a tree having a goat with him. So he too stayed to rest. And when they stopped to rest, the ox lay down to rest. On this, the man with the goat said:
"That ox is not a good bargain. It will die in a day or two." And the simpleton, believing this, exchanged the ox for the goat. And when he set forth again, he met a man carrying a big bunch of plantains. So the two sat down. And as the goat was restless and gave him no peace, the simpleton began beating it, so that it cried Ba! ba! (Now Ba in the Kachári speech means "carry"). So he said "Do you suppose a tired man like me is going to carry you?" And he was so angry that in disgust he exchanged the goat for the bunch of plantains; and went on. And as he went, he met a man cracking his fingers, and, thinking he did it in scorn of his plantains, explained at what price he had got them.
However, he offered to give him the plantains if he would teach him the art of  cracking his fingers. So the two stayed there a long time till the simpleton had more or less acquired the art he coveted. Then as he went on, he suddenly forgot what he had learned. And because he forgot it in a paddy field, he thought he must have lost it in the paddy, and began examining the ears of paddy as a woman searches another woman's hair for lice. And when the owner of the field came up and asked what he was about, he said: "I have lost a thing which cost me sixteen rupees. Come and help me to look." So the two looked together, and when, after much search, they found nothing, the other man, in pure vexation, cracked his fingers. On which the simpleton, crying "I've found it! I've found it!" went dancing away.
Presently, he stopped by a tank, and again forgot his new acquisition. So he plunged into the mud to look for it. And a man came up and asked what he was searching for? To which he replied "My friend, my friend! I have lost something very valuable. Do come and help me to look." On which, the two searched until they were covered with mud; and when they found nothing, the new-comer cracked his fingers in vexation, and the simpleton, crying "I've found it! I've found it!" went gaily cracking his fingers all the way home. And when his father and mother saw him, they smiled at his state, and till they spoke to him did not know who he was. And then they asked him what he had done with his money. "Oh!" said he, "first of all I bought a lovely maiden, and, because her eyes were bad, I exchanged her for an ox; and because there was something wrong with the ox, I got a goat in exchange; and because the goat wanted me to carry him, I got angry and changed him for plantains. And the plantains I gave to a man who taught me to crack my fingers, and what else would you have me do?" And that's all!

Friday, December 30, 2016

My new book (All levels)

Good morning, my dear English learners! I prepared a new book for you! Please download, enjoy and give me comments!!!!

Thursday, December 29, 2016

The Brahmin and His Servant (To be continued...) (Elementary-Intermediate level)

Good morning, my dear English learners! Can you continue the story?
There was once a Brahmin who had a servant. And one day when they were going to the house of the Brahmin's mother-in-law, the Brahmin gave his servant a bunch of plantains and other things to carry, and said to him "Now, mind you don't eat those plantains, for I can see just as well behind as I can in front." And, so saying, he marched ahead. And presently the servant, getting hungry, plucked one of the plantains from the bunch, and, holding it out to his master's back, ate it. And this he did again and again till all the plantains were gone. And when the Brahmin presently asked what had become of the load, the servant said "You told me you could see behind as well as in front. So I showed you each plantain before I ate it. And you never said anything."
So the Brahmin went his ways speechless. Presently they stopped to cook their midday meal, and they had got with them a few khawai fish. But the Brahmin gave only one to his servant, and kept the rest himself. And when he was about to eat, the servant asked innocently: "Oh! Brahmin, do khawai fish swim about singly or in shoals?" To which the Brahmin said: "Why, in shoals, of course." So the servant said "Then my fish had better go with yours." And, so saying, he threw his fish on the Brahmin's mess, which was defiled. So the Brahmin got no dinner, and the servant ate the whole.
A little later they came across a number of simul trees. Seeing them, the servant asked his master "And what do they call these trees, master?" And the Brahmin (being an educated man) said "These are sirmolu." But the servant said "Not so, not so! These are himulu," and offered to bet five blows that it was so. And, meeting some cowherd boys, he asked them what the trees were. And when they said "himulu" he gave the Brahmin five blows without further question.
Next they met a drove of goats. "And what may these be, Brahmin, these animals that are grazing?" And the Brahmin said "These are called châg." But the servant cried "Not so, not so! These are châgali." And the result, as before, was that the Brahmin was worsted and got five blows.  And next they came across a flock of paddy-birds, which the Brahmin called "Bog," but the servant "Boguli." And again he was worsted and got his five blows. On which he consoled himself by reciting an Assamese saying, to the effect that it is ill arguing with a fool. And when they were now come near the Brahmin's mother-in-law's house, and the Brahmin was become very hungry, he sent his servant on ahead to beg them to get supper ready. So the servant went on ahead and bade the Brahmin's mother-in-law cook a duck and put lots of plantain ashes, which the Kacháris use for salt, well knowing that his master disliked its acrid taste. So the duck was cooked with plenty of alkali.
And when the Brahmin arrived, his meal was set before him, and he was so hungry that he had to eat it whether he liked its savour or no.
And so in various ways the Brahmin was put to shame by his servant. So he wrote a long letter to his brother, and, putting it in his servant's hand, bade him deliver it. But he went a little way, until he met a man who could read and write, and he bade him tell him what was written in the letter. And the man read him the letter, which was to the effect that the brother was to kill the servant. On this, the servant tore up the letter and bade his friend write another one, saying "Dear brother, on receipt of this letter marry my servant to my niece without delay. I shall not be able to come to the wedding."
Taking this letter, the servant went to his master's brother, who was much vexed, but dared not disobey. Accordingly, though reluctantly, he married the servant to his daughter.
And, when the master came to see if his servant had been disposed of, and heard what had happened, he set about to kill him. But his niece got to know of the matter and told her husband, who got a calf, and, binding it hand and foot, put it by her in her bed. And in the night the Brahmin came, and thinking the calf was his niece's husband sleeping by her side, killed it. And when he found out his mistake in the morning, and learned that he was guilty of cow-killing, he bade his niece's husband go and bury the calf in all haste. And the servant dragged the calf into the garden and buried it with its tail sticking out of the ground. Meanwhile, the Brahmin set to work to get himself purged of the offence of cow-killing, and summoned the villagers to a feast without telling them why. And when they were all seated, the servant ran out into the garden and hauling at the calf's tail, called out "The Brahmin didn't kill a cow, Oh, no! and …

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Vocabulary Task (Intermediate-Advanced level)

Good morning, my dear vocabulary learners! I hope you have great New Year holidays and you will enjoy some of my vocabulary challenges during this time!)))

1.     For this period our knowledge of Latin depends almost exclusively upon the _____ inscriptions that have survived from this remote time.
2.     Although his words are ______ with the choicest art, yet they flow with rapidity and unpatrolled eloquence.
3.     No invading _____, though, brought news to his intent ears.
4.     The French girl’s face was set, and a _____ gleam shot from her eyes.
5.     Tiberius, the second of the Roman Emperors, lives immortal in history rather by his crimes than by his _____ deeds.
6.     She has a strong, I may say an ______ objection to being what she terms “ put upon”.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

THE TORTOISE AND MONKEY (Elementary-Intermediate level)

A tortoise and a monkey were great friends, and as they were on the road one day, a man passed laden with plantains. And the monkey, seeing him, said "You go and wait on the road, and when the man pursues you, run away. And so the man put down his load (the monkey having hid in the jungle), and ran after the tortoise. Then the monkey came out of the jungle and took the plantains and molasses that the man bare, and climbed with them into a tree. Then the man, not being able to catch the tortoise, returned, and, not getting his things, went home. Then the tortoise returned and asked his friend for his share of the plantains and molasses. And the monkey offered him for molasses potsherds and for plantains their skins only; and, when the tortoise insisted, the monkey got angry and hoisted his friend into the tree, saying "See for yourself, if any plantains or molasses be left." And so he went away and left him. And he could not get down, and one by one various animals came under the tree, but could not help him. And last of these came a very aged rhinoceros, and the tortoise begged leave to jump down on his back. And to this the rhinoceros consented, and so the tortoise leapt down, with such force that he broke the old rhinoceros' back. Then he covered up the corpse with leaves, and going to the king's court, sat him down under the king's throne; and, when the royal council was assembled, the tortoise sneezed loudly, "Who dared to sneeze?" said the king. "Cut off his nose!" But they all with one accord declared that they had not sneezed, and, after he had sneezed once or twice again, someone saw the tortoise under the king's throne. So he said respectfully "If your Majesty wishes, you can kill me, but I have something to say: There is some living thing under your Majesty's throne. Without doubt, it was that which sneezed." On which the king, looking under his throne, saw the tortoise, and ordered them to cut off his nose. But the tortoise said "Do not cut off my nose, and in return I will give your Majesty a rhinoceros." And at first the king was angry, but for his entreating gave him men with him to fetch his rhinoceros, and when the men returned with the body of the rhinoceros, the king was very pleased, and gave the tortoise a horse.
And as he was riding off, he met the monkey and told him that the king had given him the horse. And when the monkey asked him why, he said that he had jumped on to a common lizard from the tree, on which the monkey had left him and had killed it. And that then he had covered it up with leaves and told the king it was a rhinoceros. And the king was pleased and gave him a horse. So the monkey killed a lizard, and went and told the king it was a rhinoceros, and got his nose cut off for his pains. And that's all!