Chapter 5 The Happy Prince
Think about it
Why do the courtiers call the prince ‘the Happy Prince’? Is he really happy? What does he see all around him?
He was a prince when he was alive. Being a prince he never knew sorrow and suffering. So, the courtiers called him ‘the happy prince’. But he was not happy in real sense as his heart could feel the misery of needy people. He saw the miserable conditions of people around him.
Why does the Happy Prince send a ruby for the seamstress? What does the swallow do in the seamstress’ house?
The seamstress was tired due to overwork. She was so poor that she could not buy oranges for her little sick son. Her son was thirsty. The Happy Prince saw the poor lady and her son. He felt pity for them. So, he sent a ruby for her. The swallow came to the poor woman’s house and laid the ruby on the table beside her. The bird fanned the boy’s forehead with wings and flew back to the Happy Prince.
For whom does the prince send the sapphires and why?
The playwright was very poor. He was incapable of buying food and firewood. The prince sent the sapphires for the playwright so that he could finish a play for the director of the theatre in time. The princes sent his second sapphire to a poor match girl. Her matches had fallen into the gutter. She was afraid that her father would beat her for this loss. So, she was helped by the prince by sending her the second sapphire.
What does the swallow see when it was flying over the city?
The swallow saw all categories of people. He found the rich making merry in their beautiful houses and beggars begging sitting at the gates. He also saw a group of wandering children who were poverty- stricken.
Why did the swallow not leave the prince and go to Egypt?
At first, the swallow was willing to go to Egypt just after discharging his duty properly. But when he saw Prince’s activities of charity and kindness he got impressed. On the other hand now the Happy Prince had become totally blind due to the deeds of charity. In this condition, he could not leave the Prince helpless. He left the idea of going to Egypt and decided to serve the Prince.
What are the precious things mentioned in the story? Why are they precious?
The leaden heart of the Happy Prince and the dead swallow are the two precious things mentioned in the story. They are precious as they did various deeds for the welfare of people and sacrificed their lives for the sake of others.
Talk about it
The little swallow says, “ft is curious, but I feel quite warm now, although it is so cold.” Have you ever had such a feeling? Share your experience with your friends.
Man is a social animal. He is social because he is dependent on others to lead a satisfactory life. In this regard mutual help is required. Whenever we help others, there is a feeling of satisfaction. Whenever we are helped by others, we feel grateful. It is because helping others is the essence of life.
In this chapter the little swallow feels warmth when he helps the needy people. He does his act of selfless service with utmost dedication and sacrifice. Owing to this selfless service he becomes satisfied. Yes, I have experienced such a feeling many a time. I believe in helping others. Others too help me whenever I am in need. I help others considering it my duty. I remember the day when I started helping others. Since the day I feel more confident and have become a successful citizen. I feel the presence of God around me.
Short Answer Questions (2 marks each)
(About 30-40 words each)
Why did the Swallow cry when the Happy Prince asked him to pluck out one of the sapphires ?(SA-1, DDE-2014)
The swallow cried when the Prince asked him to pluck out one of the sapphires because the Prince would go blind. The Prince himself suffered too much so as to help the poor and needy people.
Where was the swallo going ? Why did he decide not go there ? (SA-1,2014)
The little swallow was going to Egypt to join his friends. The happy Prince looked so sad that the swallow decided to stay back and be his messenger. The swallow died helping the happy Prince in the service of poor people.
What were the drops of the rain actully ? Why did they fall ?
(Board Term 1, Sept., 2013,9KK73AP)
The drops of rain were actually the Happy Prince’s tears. The Happy prince was sad and moved by the widespread poverty and misery. He had always seen happiness around him. He could not fathom that people were sick and crying because of the misery around them.
Describe the statue of the Happy Prince as described in the beginning of the story ?(Board Term 1,2012, ELI-014)
At the beginning of the story the statue was fixed on a tall column, full of thin leaves of gold on the
body, and had two sapphires for eyes. It had a large red ruby fixed on the hilt of the sword.
How did the Happy Prince help the poor children in the city ? (Board Term 1,2012, ELI-015)
As per the orders of the Happy Prince, the gold leaves and the jewels on his boy were taken out by the swallow and distributed among the poor. Thus, the Happy Prince was able to help the poor children in the city.
In the story “The Happy Prince” what are the two most precious things ? What makes them so precious ? (Board Term 1,2012, ELI-016)
The two most precious things were the leaden heart of the Happy Prince and the dead swallow. The former wept for the poor and helped them by giving sapphires, gold leave and ruby. While the latter helped the prince in his noble cause and sacrificed her life while staying with him.
How did the Happy Prince help the seamstress ? (Board Term 1,2012, ELI-020)
The Happy Prince asked the swallow to take the ruby out of his sword, where it was hidden and give it to the seamstress, whose son was lying on the bed with fever. The swallow took the ruby and placed it on the table.
How did the prince and the swallow enable the playwright to finish his work ?(Board Term 1,2012, ELI-022)
The playwright was very poor. He could not buy food and firewood. It was difficult for him to write a play without food and firewood. The Prince took pity on him and decided to help him by sending the sapphires with the help of the swallow.
What were the drops of the rain actually ? Why did they fall ? (Board Term 1,2012, ELI-025)
The drops of rain were actually tears of the Happy Prince because he was weeping on seeing the misery and suffering of the people.
Why was the “Happy Prince” not really happy ? (Board Term 1,2012, ELI-026)
When the ‘Happy Prince’ was alive, he did not know what tears and sorrow were. After his death, he could see the ugliness and misery of the city. Therefore, he weeps and is not really happy.
Why did the swallow not leave the prince and go to Egypt ? (Board Term 1,2012, ELI-028)
The Happy Prince looked so sad that the little swallow felt sorry for him. He agreed to stay with him for one night and be his messenger. He picked out the great ruby from the prince’s sword and flew away to deliver it to the poor woman.
What is the moral of the story The Happy Prince ? (Board Term 1,2012, ELI-040)
The moral of the story is that we must help the poor and the needy. The prince set an example of this by giving his jewels to the poor. The swallow also proved to be a great example of love and sacrifice.
What happened when the little swallow was getting ready to sleep ?(Board Term 1,2012, ELI-043)
When the little swallow was getting ready to sleep a large drop of water fell on him. It was the Prince crying on seeing the misery and suffering of the people.
What did the Happy Prince ask the swallow to do for helping the young man in the garret ?(Board Term 1,2012, ELI-044)
The Happy Prince ordered the swallow to pluck one of his eyes which were made of sapphire and take it to the man living in the garret who was very poor and could not write with an empty stomach.
Long Answer Type Questions (4 marks each)
(About 80-100 words)
How did the little swallow carry out the wishes of the Happy Prince ?(Board Term 1,2012, ELI-018)
The swallow wanted to go to Egypt just like his friends who had already gone there. He had rested • at the base of the statue of the Happy Prince for just a night. He postponed his trip as he had to carry a ruby to the needy playwright and another to the seamstress. When the Happy Prince gave the sapphire from his eye to the match girl he became blind. So the swallow decided to stay there and help the needy just like the prince. The swallow died carrying out the wishes of the Happy Prince in the service of the needy.