3d Literature

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1  What do you know about Charles Dickens? What else would you like to know about him? Write three questions. Read the biography and see if you can answer your questions.

Charles Dickens

Charles Dickens

was born in Hampshire, England, and is considered to be one of the greatest British authors of all time. During his lifetime, he used his great influence to comment on the social wrongs of the Victorian era, particularly those related to the poor in London. In fact, Dickens was no stranger to hardship himself. As a teenager, he was forced to finish school and work in a factory, while his family were in a debtors' prison. This had a profound effect on Dickens and his later writings. Some of Charles Dickens' most well- known and loved novels include Oliver Twist (1839), David Copperfield (1850) and A Tale of Two Cities (1859).

In Great Expectations, a poor 10-year-old orphan named Pip is confronted by a prisoner. This encounter would have a huge impact on Pip's future.

2   Look at the picture. Where are the characters? What do you think will happen in the extract? Read to find out.

3  Read the extract again carefully and fill in the gaps with a suitable word or short phrase. Compare with a partner.

1  Pip was afraid of the convict because he threatened to ........... his ........ .


"Hold your noise!" cried a terrible voice, as a man jumped out from among the graves at the side of the church porch. "Keep still, you little devil, or I'll cut your throat!"

A fearful man, all in coarse grey, with a great iron  on his leg. A man with no hat, and with broken shoes, and with an old rag tied round his head. A man who had been soaked in water, and smothered in mud, and lamed by stones, and cut by flints2, and stung by nettles, and torn by briars3; who limped, and shivered, and glared and growled; and whose teeth chattered in his head as he seized me by the chin.

"Oh! Don't cut my throat, sir," I pleaded in terror. "Please don't do it, sir."
"Tell us your name!", said the man. "Quick!" "Pip, sir."

"Once more", said the man, staring at me. "Speak up!" "Pip. Pip, sir."
"Show us where you live", said the man. "Pint out the place!"

I pointed to where our village lay, on the flat in-shore4 among the alder-trees and pollards5, a mile or more from the church. The man, after looking at me for a moment, turned me upside down, and emptied my pockets. There was nothing in them but a piece of bread. When the church came to itself - for he was so sudden and strong that he made it go head over heels before me, and I saw the steeple under my feet - when the church came to itself, I say, I was seated on a high tombstone, trembling, while he ate the bread ravenously.

2    The convict turned Pip upside down because he wanted to know what was in    .........
3    The convict threatened to eat Pip's    ...............
4    Pip's...............were buried in the churchyard.
5    Pip lives with .....................    
6    The convict tells Pip to bring him ......................    
"You young dog," said the man, licking his lips, "what fat cheeks you ha' got."

I believe they were fat, though I was at that time small for my years, and not strong.

"I could eat 'em," said the man, with a threatening shake of his head, "and I've half a mind to!"

I earnestly expressed my hope that he wouldn't, and held tighter to the tombstone on which he had put me; partly, to keep myself upon it; partly, to keep myself from crying.
"Now lookee here!" said the man. "Where's your mother?"
"There, sir!", said I.
He jumped, made a short run, and stopped and looked over his shoulder.
"There, sir!", I FffTtTBIH explained. "Also Georgiana. That's my mother."
"Oh!" said he, coming back. "And is that your father alongside your mother?"
"Yes, sir," said I; "him too; late6 of this parish7."
"Ha!" he muttered then, considering. "Who d'ye live with -supposin' I kindly let you live, which I han't made up my mind about?"

"My sister, sir - Mrs Joe Gargery - wife of Joe Gargery, the blacksmith8, sir."

"Blacksmith, eh?", said he. And looked down at his leg.

After darkly looking at his leg and me several times, he came closer to my tombstone, took me by both arms, and me back as far as he could hold me; so that his eyes looked most powerfully down into mine, and mine looked most helplessly up into his. "Now lookee here," he said, "the question being whether I let you live. You know what a file is?"
"Yes, sir."
"And you know what wittles9 is?"
"Yes, sir."
After each question he tilted me over a little more, so as to give me a greater sense of helplessness and danger.
"You get me a file." He tilted me again. "And you get me wittles." He tilted me again. "You bring 'em both to me." He tilted me again.
"Or I'll have your heart and liver out." He tilted me again.
1 prison chain, 2 hard, greyish-black stone used for making tools 3 wild roses with long, prickly stems, 4 area close to a shore, 5 trees with their branches cut back,6 used when referring to s.o. who lived or worked somewhere recently, 7 a village or part of a town with its own church & priest,8 s.o. who makes things out of metal,9 food

4   a  Listen and read the text again. Match the highlighted words/phrases in the extract with their meanings below:

•    covered completely • grabbed • walked with difficulty
•    shyly • shaking with fear or cold • very hungrily
•    moved so that one end/side is higher than the other
•    upside down • stared at angrily • rough

b  Explain the words in bold. Choose some and mime or draw their meaning.

5 a  Read the description of the convict again in the first section of the extract and make notes about how he:

walked, looked, spoke, acted. Use your notes to describe him to your partner.

b Now close your eyes and imagine you are Pip sitting on the tombstone. What can you see, smell, hear, touch? How do you feel?

6  Explain the meaning of the underlined sections of the text in your own words.

7 Think!  How does the convict's way of speaking differ from Pip's? Underline the parts of the convict's speech that show us this and say what they mean. Why do you think Dickens did this?

8  In pairs, take the roles of Pip and the convict and act out their dialogue in the graveyard. Change the ending.


Английский язык. 11 класс : учеб. для общеобразоват. учреждений / [О.В. Афанасьева, Дж.Дули, И.В. Михеева и др.]. - 2-е изд., доп. и перераб. - М.: Express Publishing : Просвещение, 2009. - 244 с. : ил. - (Английский в фокусе).

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