Look at the picture and answer the questions that follow:
- Talk about what is happening in the picture?
- What do you think may be the cause of this war?
- Who is Puru? What do you know about him?
A. ReadingRead the following playlet and answer the questions that follow:
Puru, the Brave
Alexander: the King of Macedonia
who conquered Greece, Persia, etc.
Puru : a King of northern India
Four Greek generals and six soldiers
The camp of Alexander on the banks of the Jhelum. Alexander is sitting on a high chair and his four generals are sitting on low chairs. Two Greek soldiers are standing at the door. Alexander is having a talk with his generals.
Alexander : The battle of Jhelum will go down in the history of our country.
First general : It’ll go down in the history of India, too.
Second general : It’ll go down in the history of the world.
Third general : I’ve never fought such a battle before.
Fourth general : I haven’t either. Until the last moment, I couldn’t believe that we would be able to defeat the army of Puru.
Alexander : Yes, it has been a great battle—perhaps the greatest of my life. I must say every Indian soldier fought like a tiger.
First general : They fought like devils, Your Majesty.
Alexander : The Indians are good soldiers. They know how to fight. They
fight better than our men.
Second general : But their generals aren’t so good as ours.
Alexander : If you mean they aren’t so brave as the Greek generals, I don’t agree with you.
Second general : But they aren’t very skilful, Your Highness.
Alexander : I see what you mean, and here I agree with you. The Indian generals are still following the old methods of warfare. Their battle plans are faulty and they depend too much upon their elephants. But as fighters they are wonderful. I have the highest respect for them.
Third general : I was amazed to see how Puru fought in the battle of Jhelum.
Fourth general : He continued to fight even when others had left the field. I think he killed at least a hundred of our men with his sword.
Second general : And injured many more.
First general : He was badly injured himself.
Second general : That’s why we were able to capture him.
Alexander : Oh! He is a brave man and a great soldier. I wish he were one
of my generals.
Second general : He is a proud man, Your Majesty.
Alexander : A soldier is not a soldier if he is not proud. I’m not angry with him at all . He was not frightened by the news of my victories and refused to bow before me.
First general : He will be brought to Your Majesty soon. Let us see how he
Alexander : I’m sure he will not behave like a coward.
(A soldier enters and bows to Alexander.)
Soldier : Sir, Puru has been brought to the camp.
Alexander : Has he been put in chains?
Soldier : Yes, Your Majesty.
Alexander : Go and remove the chains, and bring him in. I don’t want to see
a brave man in chains.
(The soldier bows and goes out.)
Alexander : They should not have put him in chains. He is a king besides
being a great soldier.
(Puru enters with four Greek soldiers following him. Alexander and the generals stand up to greet him. Puru joins the palms of his hands and raises them to his forehead to return the greeting.)
Alexander : (to the soldiers) You may go.
(The soldiers bow and go out.)
Alexander : (to Puru) Well, how are you, king?
Puru : My name is Puru.
Alexander : All right. Are you sorry for the mistake you made, Puru?
Puru : I made no mistake, sir.
Alexander : Didn’t you reject my proposal?
Puru : I did. I refused to be your vassal.
Alexander : Do you know that many kings have gladly agreed to be my
Puru : I know that, and I also know that none of them is Puru.
First general : (softly to the second General) He is, indeed, a very proud man.
Alexander : Don’t you realize that you are my prisoner?
Puru : I do, but that doesn’t make any difference to me. I’m still the
lawful king of my country.
Alexander : How shall I treat you?
Puru : As a king should treat another king.
Alexander : Puru, you are a brave man. I’m pleased with you. I want to make
friends with you. Will you be a friend to me?
Puru : On one condition.
Alexander : What is that condition?
Puru : My kingdom should remain independent and you should treat me as your equal.
Alexander : Agreed. (after a pause) I’m proud of your friendship, my brother.
Puru : I’ll do my best to be worthy of the friendship of Alexander the
(The generals bow to Alexander and Puru.)