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two geese
 

two geese

 
 


Reading comprehension. Answer the questions on the text in complete sentences.

 

James Thurber, The very proper gander*

Not so very long ago there was a very fine gander. He was strong and smooth* and beautiful and he spent most of his time singing to his
wife and children. One day somebody who saw him strutting* up and down in his yard and singing remarked*, "There is a very proper
gander." An old hen* overheard* this and told her husband about it that night in the roost*. "They said something about propaganda," she
said. "I have always suspected* that," said the rooster9, and he went around the barnyard next day telling everybody that the very fine
gander was a dangerous bird, more than likely a hawk* in gander's clothing. A small brown hen remembered a time when at a great
distance she had seen the gander talking with some hawks in the forest "They were up to no good* ," she said. A duck* remembered that
the gander had once told him he did not believe in anything.
"He said to hell* with the flag, too" said the duck. A guinea hen* recalled* that she had once seen somebody who looked very much like the
gander throw something that looked a great deal like a bomb.
Finally everybody snatched up* sticks and stones and descended on* the gander's house. He was strutting in his front yard, singing to his
children and his wife. "There he is!" everybody cried.
"Hawk-lover! Unbeliever! Flag-hater! Bomb-thrower!" So they set upon him and drove him out of the country.
Moral: Anybody who you or your wife thinks is going to overthrow the government by violence must be driven out of the country.

 
(273 words)

Annotations

gander - Gänserich
smooth - glatt  
to strut - stolzieren
to remark - anmerken, sagen
hen - Henne
to overhear - mitanhören, belauschen
roost - Hühnerstall
to suspect - vermuten
rooster - Hahn
hawk - Habicht
to be up to no good - etwas im Schilde führen
duck - Ente
hell - Hölle
guinea hen - Perlhuhn
to recall - sich erinnern
to snatch up - schnappen
to descend on - überfallen
to overthrow (the government) - (die Regierung) stürzen

 
Questions on the text. Answer in complete sentences without copying the text.

 

1. What is the theme of the fable.

 

 

2. Why does the gander behave the way he does?

 

 

3. Does the gander differ from the other animals in the fable? Say why or why not.

 

 

4. What would you say are the motives for the other barnyard animals' behaviour?

 

 

 

5. Why has James Thurber chosen this moral?

 

 
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