The Pigtail Questions & Answers

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

This poem is written by William Thackeray. In my previous posts, I have shared the questions and answers of My Lord Bag of Rice and The Paper Boats so, you can check these posts as well.

The Pigtail Questions & Answers

Word Galaxy

  • Sage – a very wise person
  • Pigtail – hair tied together into a bunch and twisted into plaits
  • Mused – thought carefully
  • Stout – strong and thick
  • Twirl – move round and round
  • Slack – without attention and energy
  • Tack – move in a zigzag way
  • Twist – turn the body quickly and change direction
  • Faithful – here, staying with

Question 1: Choose the correct option:

(a) This poem is about

i. the way sages live
ii. the wisdom of the sage
iii. the foolishness of the sage

(b) There lived a sage in days of yore. In the poem, the sage lived in_____.

i. The hard times
ii. The olden days
iii. The not so very modern days

(c) The sage was worried about

i. his hair
ii. his tail
iii. his pig

(d) The sage wanted the pigtail

i. to spin around him
ii. to hang at his face
iii. to hand behind him

(e) The theme of the poem relates to

i. a learned man who lacks practical common sense
ii. an idiot
iii. an intellectual

(f) The behaviour of the sage is

i. irrational
ii. cruel
iii. insane

(g) The tone of the poem is

i. tragic
ii. mock-serious
iii. humorous

(h) The ending of the poem indicates that

i. his pigtail refuses to change its place.
ii. the sage is satisfied with his efforts.
iii. it is a case of wasted efforts.

Question 2: Complete the sentences:

(a) The sage was sad because the pigtail was hanging down his back.
(b) He tried to change the position of the pigtail and have it hanging at his face.
(c) He spun round and round to change the position of the pigtail.
(d) To change the pigtail’s position, the sage twisted and turned in different directions.
(e) Even today the pigtail can be seen hanging behind him.

Question 3: When did the sage live?

Answer: The sage lived in days of yore/olden days.

Question 4: What was the sage upset?

Answer: The sage’s pigtail hung behind him which made him upset.

Question 5: How did the sage try to solve his problem?

Answer: The sage tried to bring his pigtail to the front by spinning around and turning right and left, up and down and in and out.

The Pigtail Questions & Answers

Question 6: Describe the movements the sage made in his struggle to move the pigtail.

Answer: To make the pigtail move, the sage turned round and round and then out and in. Then, he turned right and left. Finally, he twisted and twirled to move the pigtail.

Question 7: Why did the pigtail not move?

Answer: The pigtail of the sage was fixed bunch of hair which hung behind him and was impossible to move.

Question 8: How is the sage in the poem different from sages you have heard or read about?

Answer: The sages that I have heard about are wise men. They are philosophers having direct knowledge of the Universal/Absolute. However, the sage described in this poem is a learned man but he lacks practical common sense. He kept trying to move his pigtail which was useless and practically not possible.

Question 9: What made the sage unhappy? What does the sage mean when he says that he has found the mystery?

Answer: The sage was unhappy about the fact that his attractive pigtail always hung behind him. By saying that he has found the mystery, he means that he has solved the problem of how to get his pigtail to hang in front of him and not behind him.

Question 10: What is your opinion of the solution which the sage found to his problem? What does it tell you about the sage?

Answer: According to me, the solution to the problem is not only funny but also foolish. This is because the sage doesn’t realise that if he turns, his pigtail will also turn with him and thus will always remain behind him. This tells us that the sage lacks practical common sense.

Question 11: Read and answer the questions:

But wondered much and sorrowed more
Because it hung behind him.

(a) What was the sage wondering about?

Answer: The sage was wondering about his pigtail.

(b) What did the word ‘it’ refer to here?

Answer: The word ‘it’ referred to the sage’s pigtail.

Question 12: Make a list of all the elements that make this poem humorous.

Answer: The elements that make this poem humorous are:

  • The description of the foolish man as a ‘sage’.
  • The sage wearing a pigtail.
  • The sage being sad about his pigtail hanging behind him.
  • The sage wanting his pigtail to hang in front of him.
  • The sage going round and round in circles all day and being surprised that his pigtail is still hanging behind him.
  • Even after years have passed, the sage turns about himself trying to get his pigtail to come in front.

Question 13: Explain the following:

(a) Days of yore

Answer: It means a long time ago; many years ago; in ancient times.

(b) It mattered not a pin.

Answer: This means it did not matter at all; it made no difference at all.

Question 14: Write a few pairs of rhyming words from the poem.

Answer: Yore-wore, case-face and found-round.

So, these were The Pigtail Questions & Answers.

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