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Author: Saki(H.H.



Hector Hugh Munro(18 December 1870 14

November 1916), better known by thepen
nameSaki, and also frequently asH. H.
Munro, was a British writer whose witty,
mischievous and sometimesmacabrestories
satirizeEdwardiansociety and culture. He is
considered a master of theshort story, and
often compared toO. Henry andDorothy Parker.
Influenced byOscar Wilde,Lewis
CarrollandRudyard Kipling, he himself

1.Self possessed: calm and confident; sure
of herself
2.endeavoured: tried
3.flatter: make(her)happy
4.Suggest masculine habitation: suggest
that the room belonged to a man
5.Moor: grassland
6.treacherous: dangerous(though it seems
7.bog: wet, spongy ground(one may sink
into it)
8.falteringly: a faltering voice is shaky,
hesitant; haltingly
9.bustled:entered(the room)noisily

11.snipe: water bird that lives in marshes

12.Rattled on: went on
13.Scarcity of birds: no birds or very
few(scarcity means acute shortage)
14.straying: moving(she was not looking at
15.delusion: false impression or belief
16.Ailments and infirmities: (relating to
health) complaints of sickness/weakness
17.Sympathetic comprehension:
understanding and showing sympathy
18.Uncanny coincidence:
unnatural/unexpected/strange event
19.Romance at short notice: finding
occasions for fun and enjoyment, wherever

Look at the following images and assume the meanings of

the given words.






Comprehension Check
Page No: 57
1. Why had Framton Nuttel come to the "rural retreat"?
Framton Nuttel had come to the rural retreat to
undergo a nerve cure.
2.Why had his sister given him letters of introduction to
people living there?
His sister had given him letters of introduction to people
living there as he did not know anyone there. She knew
that he would not speak to anybody and his nerves
would be worse from moping.
That is why she gave him letters of introduction to all the
people she knew there.

3. What had happened in the Sappleton family

as narrated by the niece?
The niece told Nuttel that about three years
ago Mrs Sappleton's husband and her two
younger brothers had gone for their day's
shooting through the open French window. They
never came back. In crossing the moor to their
favorite shooting spot, they were all engulfed in
a piece of bog. It was a wet summer and places
that were safe in other years gave way
suddenly without warning. Their bodies were
never recovered.

Page No: 60
1. What did Mrs Sappleton say about the open window?
Mrs Sappleton said that she hoped Framton did not mind
the open window. She told him that her husband and her
brothers would be coming home directly from their
shooting, and they always came that way.
2.The horror on the girl's face made Framton swing
around in his seat. What did he see?
When Framton turned around,he saw a silhouette of
three men and dog in the evening light. Then a hoarse
voice was heard shouting at the dog.

Page No: 61
1.What was the girl's explanation for his
lightning exit?
The girl said that the spaniel was the reason for
his lightning exit. She said that he had a horror
of dogs. She explained that he was once hunted
into a cemetery somewhere on the banks of the
Ganges by a pack of dogs. He had to spend the
night in a newly dug grave, with the creatures
snarling, grinning and foaming just above him.

1. Is this a mystery story? Give a reason for
your answer.
While explaining the mystery behind the open
French window, the events narrated by Mrs
Sappleton's niece manage to create a sense of
foreboding. Later, when the three men
approach the open window, the reader (like
Framton) can only logically conclude that they
were ghosts. Hence, one can say that this story
does contain elements of the mysterious.


The moral of the story that
we draw from it is that one
should not deceive another
person. He or she should be
sensitive towards a persons
needs or circumstances.


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