NCERT Class 10 English Solutions: Chapter 8-Mijbil the Otter Part 2 (For CBSE, ICSE, IAS, NET, NRA 2022)

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Question 3:

Q. Why is Mij՚s species now known to the world as Maxwell՚s otter?

A. Maxwell՚s otter named Mij was of a race previously unknown to science and was at length named by zoologists lutrogale perspicillata maxwelli or Maxwell՚s otter.

Maxwell՚s Otter for Mijbil the Otter

Question 4:

Q. Maxwell in the story speaks for the otter, Mij. He tells us what the otter feels and thinks on different occasions. Given below are some things the otter does. Complete the column on the right to say what Maxwell says about what Mij feels and thinks.

Table of Complete the Column on the Right to Say What Maxwell Says About What Mij Feels and Thinks
What Mij doesHow Mij feels thinks
Plunges, rolls in the water and makes the water splosh and splash-
Screws the tap in the wrong way-
Nuzzles Maxwell՚s face and neck in the aeroplane-


Table of Answer of What Maxwell Says About What Mij Feels and Thinks
What Mij doesHow Mij feels thinks
Plunges, rolls in the water and makes the water splosh and splashwent wild with joy
Screws the tap in the wrong wayIrritated and disappointed
Nuzzles Maxwell՚s face and neck in the aeroplaneDistressed chitter of recognition and welcome


Q. What are ‘compulsive habits’ ? What does Maxwell say are the compulsive habits of

Compulsive Habits of Otters for Mijbil the Otter

(i) school children

(ii) Mij?

A. Compulsive habits are habits that are impossible to control. According to Maxwell children on their way to and from school must touch every seventh upright of the iron railings, pass to the outside of every second lamp post. Such were the compulsive habits children.

Opposite to Maxwell՚s flat, there was a single-storied primary school. Along its frontage ran a low wall some two feet high. On its way home, Mij would tug Maxwell to this wall, jump onto it, and gallop the full length of its thirty yards, distracting both the pupils and the staff. Such was the compulsive habit of Mij.

Question 3:

Q. What group of animals do otters belong to?

A. Otters belong to a comparatively small group of animals called Mustellines, shared by the badger, mongoose, weasel, stoat, mink and others.

Question 4:

Q. What guesses did the Londoners make about what Mij was?

A. According to Maxwell, the average Londoner does not recognize an otter. The Londoners who saw Mij made different guesses about who Mij was. They guessed, among other things, that it was a baby seal, a squirrel, a walrus, a hippo, a beaver, a bear cub, a leopard and a brontosaur.

Question 5:

Read the story and find the sentences where Maxwell describes his pet otter. Then choose and arrange your sentences to illustrate those statements below that you think are true.

Maxwell՚s description

Q. (i) makes Mij seem almost human, like a small boy.

(ii) shows that he is often irritated with what Mij does.

(iii) shows that he is often surprised by what Mij does.

(iv) of Mij՚s antics is comical

(v) shows that he observes the antics of Mij very carefully.

(vi) shows that he thinks Mij is a very ordinary otter.

(vii) shows that he thinks the otter is very unusual.


(i) He spent most of his time in play.

(iii) I watched, amazed; in less than a minute he had turned the tap far enough to produce a trickle of water, and after a moment or two achieved the full flow.

(v) A suitcase that I had taken to Iraq had become damaged on the journey home, so that the lid, when closed, remained at a slope from one end to the other. Mij discovered that if he placed the ball on the high end it would run down the length of the suitcase. He would dash around to the other end to ambush its arrival, hide from it, crouching, to spring up and take it by surprise, grab it and trot off with it to the high end once more.

(vii) It is not, I suppose, in any way strange that the average Londoner should not recognize an otter, but the variety of guesses as to what kind of animal this might be came as a surprise to me. Mij was anything but an otter.

Thinking About Language

Question 1:

From the table below, make as many correct sentences as you can using would and/or used to, as appropriate. (Hint: First decide whether the words in italics show an action, or a state or situation, in the past.) Then add two or three sentences of your own to it.

Using Would and Used To
Table of Make as Many Correct Sentences as You Can Using Would and/or Used to, as Appropriate
Emperor AkbarWould used tobe found of musical evenings.
Every evening weTake long walks on the beach
Fifty years ago, very few peopleOwn cars.
Till the 1980s, ShanghaiHave very dirty streets.
My uncleSpend his holidays by the sea.


Correct Usage for Used to and Would
  1. Emperor Akbar used to be fond of musical evenings.
  2. Every evening we used to take long walks on the beach.
  3. Fifty years ago, very few people used to own cars.
  4. Till the 1980s, Shanghai used to have very dirty streets.
  5. My uncle would spend his holidays by the sea.
  6. My uncle used to take long walks on the beach.
  7. My uncle used to be fond of musical evenings.

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