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The Proposal - Anton Chekov

  First Flight - Lesson 11. The Proposal - Anton Chekov. Glossary, Summary, Questions, and Answers. Characters - STEPAN STEPANOVITCH CHUBKOV...

 First Flight - Lesson 11.

The Proposal - Anton Chekov.

Glossary, Summary, Questions, and Answers.

Characters -




Glossary -

1. Proposal - The word has several meanings. 1) a suggestion, plan, or scheme for doing something. 2) an offer for a possible plan or action. 3) the act of asking someone's hand.

2. Toast - a glass of wine.

3. Palpitations - heartbeat.

4. Twitch - quick movement.

5. Lunatic - stupid, crazy.

6. Neglige - woman gown.

7. Shelling peas - a difficult task.

8. Meadows - pasture.

9. Perpetuity - forever.

10. Reckoned - to think.

11. Dessiatins - land area.

12. Gypsies -  backward people.

13. Impudent - very rude.

14. Landgrabber -

15. Mowers - machine for cutting grass.

16. Hoarse - rough.

17. Restrain - to control.

18. Awful - very bad.

19. Excruciating - painful.

20. Agitating - to make nervous.

21. Pettifogger - a cheater.

22. Embezzlement - theft.

23. Lunacy - destructive behaviour.

24. Guzzling - greedy.

25. Intriguer - cunning.

26. Malicious - benevolent, nasty, a person having a desire to cause harm to someone.

27. Numb - not able to feel. dead.

28. Impudence - cunning.

29. Confounded - cursed face.

30. Wizen-faced frump - wrinkled face.

31. Pedigree - family of animals.

32. Overshot - The upper jaw is longer than the lower jaw.

33. Whipper -lash/splash.

34. Purebred - bred from members of a recognized breed.

35. Muzzle - the nose and mouth of an animal.

36. Ivan Vassilevitch - the first czar of Russia.

Summary - " The Proposal" is a one-act farce by Anton Chekhov that revolves around a man's comical attempts to propose marriage to a woman he is arguing with over trivial matters. The play humorously explores the absurdity of human interactions and misunderstandings.

Thinking about the play -

1. What does Chubukov at first suspect that Lomov has come for? Is he sincere when he later says, " And I've always loved you, my angel, as if you were my own son"? Find the reasons from the play.

Ans-Chubkov initially suspects that Lomov came to ask for some money from him, and when he tells Lomov that you are like his son, he is not at all sincere. Still, when he comes to know that Lomov has come up with a proposal to marry his daughter, he tries to become friendly with Lomov, but in reality, he is a selfish and cunning man.

2. Chubkov says of Natalya; "... as if she won't consent! She's in love: egad, like a lovesick cat..." Would you agree? Find reasons for your answer.

Ans - Chubkov always thought Lomov would be an ideal match for his daughter Natalya. Still, when Lomov doubted Natalya's consent, he immediately said she was in love with him. But, this is not true, both Lomov and Natalya were never in love with each other.

3.1) Find all the words and expressions in the play that characters use to speak about each other and the accusations and insults they hurl at each other. ( For example, Lomov in the end calls Chubukov an intriguer; but earlier, Chubkov has himself called a " malicious, doblefaced intriguer." Again, Lomov describes Natalya as " an excellent housekeeper, not bad-looking, well-educated."

Ans - In this play, characters of the play frequently change their opinion about others when they talk to each other. So, here are some examples of the words that have been used by a character while calling or mentioning another character, but they don't use the same kind of words, sometimes praising words, and sometimes bad ones.

1. Lomov - Darling, precious, impudent, pettifogger, intrigue, rascal, the monster, wizen-faced frump, fool.

2. Natalya - A lovesick cat, well-educated, not bad looking, excellent housekeeper, honored Natalya Stepanovna.

3. Chubukov - Grabber, old rat, jesuit, intriguer, rascal.

2) Then think of five adjectives or adjectival expressions of your own to describe each character in the play.

Ans - 1) Chubukov - Cunning, deceitful, tricky, selfish, fatty, plotting.

2) Natalya - Greedy, self-centered, materialistic, selfish, grabby.

3) Lomov - Simple, silly, weak, foolish, feeble, sick, dull.

Thinking about Language -

1. This play has been translated into English from the Russian original. Are there any expressions or ways of speaking that strike you as more Russian than English?

Ans - Expressions not used in contemporary English: my darling, my beauty, my precious, my angel, my beloved, and all that sort of thing, the scarecrow, stuffed sausage, the wizen-faced frump, etc.

English Expressions - Madam, my heart, honored Natalya Stepaova, I beg your pardon, my dear fellow, etc.

3. Look up the following phrases in a dictionary to find out their meaning, and then use each in a sentence of your own.

1. You may take it that - to suppose, to believe.

Ans - But if you can do the job honestly and capably, you may take it, or

" You may take it that the project will be completed on time, as we have a highly skilled and dedicated team working on it."

2. He seems to be coming around - to change your opinion of something.

Ans - At first, John was against the idea of investing in the project, but after hearing the compelling arguments, he seems to be coming around to the possibility of joining the venture.

3. My foot's gone to sleep - my foot goes to sleep.

Ans - After sitting cross-legged for a long time, I tried to stand up, but my foot had gone to sleep, and I had to wait a minute for the feeling to return before I could walk properly.

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