The Brook Questions & Answers

Hi Everyone!! This article will share The Brook Questions & Answers.

Written by Alfred, Lord Tennyson, the poem celebrates the power and beauty of nature and draws parallels between a winding brook and a man’s journey through life. In my previous post, I have already shared The Brook Stanza-Wise Summary so, you can check that post as well.

The Brook Questions & Answers

Question 1: Read the extract given below and answer the following questions:

“By thirty hills I hurry down,
Or slip between the ridges,
By twenty thorpes, a little town,
And half a hundred bridges”.

(a) What do the words ‘thirty hills’, ‘twenty thorpes’ and ‘half a hundred bridges’ suggest?

Answer: In this part of its journey, the brook covers a vast expanse of land as it travels through ‘thirty hills, twenty thorpes and half a hundred bridges and a little town.

(b) Who is referred to as ‘I’? What is it describing?

Answer: The letter ‘I’ refers to the brook which has been personified in the poem. The brook is describing its journey from the place of origin to the river that it joins.

(c) Which word in the text means ‘move quickly and quietly’?

Answer: Slip

(d) What is the speed of the brook as it moves from the hills and bridges?

Answer: The speed of the brook is rapid as it moves through the hills, ridges and villages.

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Question 2: Why does the poet use the word bicker in the poem?

Answer: Bicker means to quarrel. A quarrel makes noise and when the brook flows it creates different noises. Hence the sound of the brook bickering refers to the children playing and quarreling.

Question 3: Why does the poet use the word ‘steal’ and ‘slide’?

Answer: The poet wants to convey that the brook can sometimes flow quietly. The term ‘steal’ is used to convey the stealthy movement of the river. The word ‘slide’ creates a mental picture of the river sliding along its path with the smooth movements of a snake. The sound of its movement is undetectable.

The Brook Questions & Answers

Question 4: Read the extract given below and answer the following questions:

“I wind about, and in and out,

With here a blossom sailing,

And here and there a lusty trout,

And here and there a grayling,

I wind about, and in and out”.

(a) Give the synonym of the word ‘blossom’.

Answer: Flower

(b) What are the different things carried by the brook?

Answer: On its journey, the brook carries pebbles, flowers, fish, different plants and foam along with it.

(c) What does these lines tell us about the movement of the brook?

Answer: The brook flows in a zigzag manner.

(d) Where does the brook carry all the things?

Answer: The brook carries all the things with it to the brimming river which it joins.

Question 5: ‘I make the netted sunbeam dance’. What image does the poet want to create in the minds of the reader?

Answer: The term ‘netted sunbeam’ refers to the sun’s rays that fall on the waters of the brook through the leaves. The sunbeams breaking through the foliage gives an impression of a net of light. The light that is reflected in all directions gives one the impression that the rays are dancing.

Question 6: “For men may come and men may go, But I go on for ever”. What do these lines mean?

Answer: Generations after generations of men come and pass away from the earth, but the brook continues to flow forever. This means that the existence of man is transitory while that of the brook is eternal.

Question 7: Why has the word ‘chatter’ been repeated in the poem?

Answer: The word ‘chatter’ means to talk quickly in a friendly manner without giving a pause. The poet uses this word repeatedly to denote the nonstop sound made by the brook while passing through its stony ways.

Question 8: What does the poet want to convey through the poem ‘The Brook’?

Answer: The brook is a symbol of the struggle of human life. The poet wishes to point out that just as ups and downs in life do not deter the brook from its journey, similarly, human beings should also take the hurdles and sorrows in their stride.

The Brook Questions & Answers

Question 9: ‘The Brook’ offers a visual treat of sight and sound. Explain.

Answer: The poet provides us a visual treat of sight and sound using words like – bicker, murmur, chatter, babble and trebles for sound. A murmur means making soft sounds, bicker means to flow with a loud noise, treble is a high pitched sound in music. Chatter means making a meaningless sound, so the brook chatters in little sharps and trebles, it babbles on the pebbles thus giving us a treat of sound.

The visual treats are conveyed by – I steal by lawns. I make a sudden sally and sparkle among the fern, I slide by hazel covers. I move the sweet forget-me-nots. I slip, I slide, I gloom, I glance – sometimes it moves gently, sometimes forcefully. ‘It moves in and out’ means it makes a zigzag movement like a snake.

Question 10: How has the poet drawn parallelism between the journey of the brook and the life of man?

Answer: In the poem ‘The Brook’, the poet has very realistically drawn parallelism between the journey of the brook and the life of man. When the brook begins its journey from its source, it emerges suddenly and flows with a lot of noise and speeds down the valley. It hurries down the hills and slips down the ridges.

Similarly, in his youth, a man is very active and agile. The brook continues to move quickly in its early stages in spite of all the stones, pebbles and other obstacles that come in its way.

Similarly, a man in his youth is very energetic and is able to face all the challenges and obstacles with great gusto. The hazel covers and forget-me-nots that the brook flows by stand for the joys one experiences in life. As the brook passes the bramble bushes in the wild, it murmurs (complains).

Similarly in life, when one has sorrows and faces danger, we too complain and move slowly past them. As the brook comes closer to the river, it slows down. It steals, slides, slips, lingers and loiters. This is similar to a man at the age of maturity and old age. His movements slow down and he becomes calm and less energetic.

Question 11: Discuss the effectiveness of the first-person narration, used by Lord Tennyson in the poem ‘The Brook’.

Answer: The brook is an inanimate object but the poet by introducing the device of personification makes it tell its experiences as it flows downhills, valley, villages and fields and finally joins a river. It relates the tale of its journey with accuracy and in detail. Its movements and the sounds it makes as it moves over pebbles, grassy plots, as it cuts its own banks and lets the beams of sun dance on its waters and carries flowers and fish along with it to the big river. There is liveliness, clarity and an effectively painted picture of a brook taking its natural course which comes alive before our eyes.

So, these were The Brook Questions & Answers.