Thursday, August 27, 2020

Porus And His Elephant | Summary, Questions, and Answers

Book Cover Class 8th English -Tulip Sereis

Poems | Class 8th | jandkncert

Porus And His Elephant | Summary, Questions, and Answers

Poem 2: Porus And His Elephant

Hear ye a tale of the days gone by,

(Days whose recording is short and scant)

This is a tale that can never die,

Told of a king and his elephant!


Out on the plain where the waters go,

Out on the banks of the Jhelum wide,

Porus the king went to meet his foe,

Porous the king in his battle-pride.


Drawn up his elephants in array,

Standing in state, in unbroken rank;

While Alexander the Great, for fray,

Led up his troops on the other bank.


Fierce raged the fight; it was hard to tell

What would betide, and they fought the more.

Till, from his elephant, sudden fell

Porous the king, who was wounded sore.


Then did the elephant, faithful beast,

For his defence play a gallant part;

Sanding above him, lest e’er the least

Harm should assail him, from blow or dart.


Trumpeting loudly, he held at bay

Foreman with arrow or spear or sword.

Challenged them all to approach their prey,

Dared them to injure his wounded lord.



Then at the last, with his mighty trunk,

Lifted him tenderly on his head,

Bore him unconscious faintness sunk,

Where he could rest without fear or dread.


Ah! these dumb that but cry and pant.

They, too, can love, for God made them so;

Porus was saved, but his elephant

Died from his wounds; thus, the legends go.

                                                (Mary Dobson)


Central Idea of the Poem

          The poem “The Porus and his Elephant” tells the story of Porus (An Indian King from Punjab) and his faithful elephant. The poem is a lyrical ballad that gives an account of an elephant that saved the life of his wounded master on the battlefield. The elephant dies in order to save the life of his master. The poem shows the loyalty and faithfulness of animals like elephants. It shows the way of expressing their emotions and love to their masters.

Summary of the Poem

          The poem “The Porus and his Elephant” has been written by Mary Dobson. This poem is a lyrical ballad that narrates the loyalty and love of an animal towards its master. The poem begins with the lines in which the poet wants to tell a tale of a king and his elephant. He says that the tale of these two legends will never die. Porus, the king, goes to meet his enemy on the banks of river Jhelum with his army and elephants. The army of the foe, Alexander was waiting on the other side of the bank ready to attack. There was a fierce fight between the two. It was difficult to predict the aftermath of the war. They fought more and more till Porus fell wounded from his elephant. Then the elephant shows his loyalty by defencing the king. He comes to his rescue by standing above him and saves him from being harmed by the darts.

          He trumpets and resists the enemies to come near his wounded master. He defends his master from the spears, arrows, and swords of enemies. He takes all the attacks of enemies on his own body and saves his master. When the elephant loses his energy because of the injuries and wounds, he lifts his master and keeps him on his head so that his master could rest there without any fear. The animal saves his master but loses his life. The poet in the last stanza says that these beasts who don’t speak like human beings but can cry and breathe heavily. They too can love because Almighty has made them so. They cannot talk but they show their love and faithfulness by sacrificing their lives. This is seen in the story where an elephant sacrifices his life to save his master. Porus is saved but the elephant dies. This is how the legends go.


Structure of the Poem

          The poem is a legend. It is a lyrical ballad. The poem consists of eight stanzas. Each stanza consists of four lines. The length of the lines is almost equal in some stanzas. It has a nice style of the rhyming scheme in the form of ‘abab’.


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