During the four years since his puppyhood he (Buck) had lived the life of a sated aristocrat

Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:

During the four years since his puppyhood he (Buck) had lived the life of a sated aristocrat; he had a fine pride in himself, was ever a trifle egotistical, as country gentlemen sometimes become because of their insular situation.

(i) Where did Buck spend his puppyhood? Describe the place. 

(ii) Who were Buck’s parents? What do you know about them? 

(iii) What do you understand from the term, ‘sated aristocrat’?
In what way did Buck’s life resemble that of a ‘sated aristocrat’?

(iv) What did Buck do to prevent himself from becoming a pampered house-dog? 

(v) What historical event changed Buck’s life of ease forever?
     Which member of the household was responsible for bringing about this change?
     Why do you think this person acted in this manner?

Answer

(i) Judge Miller’s place/ Santa Clara Valley, California

Any 2 of the following:

• Stood back from the road, half-hidden among the trees
• House approached by gravelled driveways
• Wide-spread lawns beneath stately poplar trees
• Backyard had stables with dozens of grooms and boys/ servants’ quarters/ outhouses/ grape arbours/ green pastures/ orchards/ berry patches

(ii) • Father - Elmo: a huge St. Bernard/ Judge Miller’s inseparable companion
     • Mother - Shep: Scotch Shepherd dog

(iii) • Contented/ fully satisfied nobleman
     • Led a life of ease and comfort: Went swimming/ hunting with Judge’s sons
     • Escorted Judge’s daughter on long walks
     • Lay at Judge’s feet in front of fire in the library
     • Stalked imperiously among the terriers and ignored other housedogs
     • Considered himself king over all the creeping, crawling, flying things of Judge Miller’s place including humans

(iv) • engaged in hunting
     • other outdoor activity helped him stay fit / kept down fat / hardened his muscles
     • love of water was a tonic and health preserver

(v) • the Klondike Strike of 1897
     • Manuel, the Gardener’s helper
     • He was a gambler / needed money to gamble / believed that one day he would make enough money to meet the needs of his family / tempted by offer / sold Buck to           an agent who was shipping dogs north to draw the sleds in the frozen north.