IGNITE ENGLISH PLUS

Learn English Language skills through our AI based learning portal with the support of our Academic Experts!

Learn more

Theory:

     I jumped over the bench and sat down at my desk. Not till then, when I had got a little over my fright, did I see that our teacher had on his beautiful green coat, his frilled shirt, and the little black silk cap, all embroidered, that he never wore except on inspection and prize days. Besides, the whole school seemed so strange and solemn. But the thing that surprised me most was to see, on the back benches that were always empty, the village people sitting quietly like ourselves; old Hauser, with his three-cornered hat, the former mayor, the former postmaster, and several others besides. Everybody looked sad; and Hauser had brought an old primer, thumbed at the edges, and he held it open on his knees with his great spectacles lying across the pages.
 
     While I was wondering about it all, M. Hamel mounted his chair, and, in the same grave and gentle tone which he had used to me, said, “My children, this is the last lesson I shall give you. The order has come from Berlin to teach only German in the schools of Alsace and Lorraine. The new master comes tomorrow. This is your last French lesson. I want you to be very attentive.”
Explanation:
 
After then, the narrator moved quickly near the bench and sat down in his place. After overcoming his fear and becoming comfortable, the narrator noted that M. Hamel had worn an embroidered beautiful green coat, a frilled shirt, and the little black silk cap. M. Hamel usually wore it during inspection and prize distribution days. If that day had been any other, the narrator wondered what could have prompted M. Hamel to wear his beautiful attire. The school's atmosphere struck Franz as severe and strange. Furthermore, the senior village men — Hauser, who wore his three-cornered hat, the retired mayor, the postmaster, and others – sat on the last benches of the classroom. They all looked depressed.
 
topper-gc0f516540_1280.png
Black hat

Hauser had brought his old and damaged reader with him. He'd opened it, placed his spectacles on it, and kept it on his knees. The narrator was perplexed and unsure about what was going on that day. M. Hamel then informed them that it was their "last lesson" in French, which he would teach them. He also said that an order was passed to teach solely German in Alsace (A historical region in northeastern France on the Rhine River plain) and Lorraine (A cultural and historical region in Northeastern France that is currently part of the Grand East administrative region) schools. In addition, he said that the German instructor would arrive the next day and urged the students to pay attention because this was the last French class.
 
Meanings of the difficult words:
 
S.No
Words
Meanings
1
FrillA long, narrow strip of cloth with folds along one side that is sewn along the edge of a piece of clothing or material for decoration
2
EmbroideredCloth decorated with patterns sewn on with thread
3
Inspection The act of looking at something carefully, or an official visit to a building or organisation to check that everything is correct and legal
4
Strange Unusual or surprising; difficult to understand or explain 
5
SolemnSerious and without any humour
6
SurpriseAn unexpected or astonishing event 
7
SpectacleAn unusual or unexpected event or situation that attracts attention, interest, or disapproval
8
PrimerA small book containing basic facts about a subject, used mainly when you are beginning to learn about that subject
9
AttentivePaying close attention to something 
Reference:
State Council of Educational Research and Training (2018). Term-1 English Standard-10. The Last Lesson - Alphonse Daudet (pp. 162-178). Published by the Tamil Nadu Textbook and Educational Services Corporation.