O. Henry (1862 – 1910).
William Sidney Porter, known by his penname, O. Henry, was born in North Carolina. He was the son of a doctor. After school he worked as a clerk, then went to Texas where he tried various professions. After that he became a clerk in a provincial bank.
In 1902 he went to New York where he lived and wrote short stories. In his short stories O. Henry described amusing incidents of everyday life in large cities, on the ranches and on the highways of America. He wrote about 300 stories, such as “The Last Leaf”, “The Four Million”, “Heart of the West”, “The Voice of the City”, etc. His only novel is “Cabbages and Kings”.
Before reading the story, let’s review some words.
Match the words in Column A with the phrases in Column B.
Column A Column B
proud A. vision of something ideal
beautiful B. to give for money
eve C. feeling satisfaction and pleasure
poor D. a small clock worn on the wrist
sell E. having beauty pleasing to the eye
dream F. having little money
watch G. the day or evening before a holiday
What is the Russian for husband, wife, length, knees, treasure, to be proud of, to count, chain, tiny, expression, to cover, comb? Find these words in the text.
Read the story.
The Two Gifts.
Jim and Della were very poor. They lived in New York in a small room on the top floor of a high building. Jim was 22 years old, Della was 21.
Both husband and wife worked very hard, but there never was any money in the house: for all they got went to pay for food. And the rent was $8 a week.
And yet they owned two treasures of which they were very proud. These treasures were Jim’s gold watch which he had got from his father, and Della’s beautiful golden hair.
It was the eve of New Year’s Day. Della wanted to give Jim a present. She counted her money. One dollar and 87 cents. That was all she had. Only $1.87 to buy a present for Jim. So she got up and went to the looking-glass. Her eyes shone brilliantly. Quickly she undid her hair. It fell to its full length. It reached below her knees and covered her like a cloak. And then she did it up again and nervously. She put on her old brown jacket and her old brown hat. Then she ran out the door and down the stairs to the street.
She stopped before a sign and read the words: “M-me Sofronie. Hair goods of all kinds”. Then she entered the shop. Madame was sitting at the counter.
“Will you buy my hair?” asked Della.
“Let me see it,” said Madame.
Della took off her hat and undid her hair.
“Twenty dollars,” said Madame, lifting the mass of Della’s golden hair with a practiced hand.
“Give me the money,” said Della…
The next two hours were like a happy dream. Della was hurrying from shop to shop looking for Jim’s present.
She found it at last. It was a watch chain for which she paid $21. and then she hurried home with the chain and the remaining 87 cents.
Jim was not at home. Della got out her curling irons and lighted the gas and went to work; in forty minutes her hair was covered with tiny curls. She looked like a schoolboy. She said to herself: ”I hope Jim will not kill me. But what could I do? Oh, what could I do with a dollar and 87 cents?”
At 7 o’clock the coffee was ready. Della set waiting for Jim. She heard his steps on the stairs, and she turned white for just one moment. The door opened and Jim entered the room. He looked thin and very serious…and suddenly Jim stopped. His eyes were fixed upon Della, and there was an expression in them that she could not understand.
“Jim, darling” she cried. “Don’t look at me like that! I sold my hair because I wanted to give you a present. My hair will grow again. It grows very fast. Say “Happy New Year”, Jim, and let us be happy. You don’t know what a beautiful present I have for you.”
Jim said nothing. He drew a package from his overcoat pocket and put it on the table.
“If you open the package, you will understand,” he said.
Della took off the paper. There lay the beautiful combs that Della had seen in a Broadway sop window. Now they were hers, but her hair was gone.
Suddenly Della jumped and cried: “Oh, Jim, you have not yet seen your present!” She held it out to him.
“Isn’t it a beautiful chain? Give me your watch! I want to see how it looks on it.”
Jim fell on the sofa and put his hands behind his head and smiled.
“Della,” said he, “I sold the watch to get the money to buy your combs. Is the coffee ready?”
Say what is the English for: верхний этаж, они очень гордились, канун Нового года, купить подарок, она вошла в магазин, счастливый сон, искать подарок, она распустила волосы, сбежала вниз по ступенькам на улицу, она побледнела, в его глазах было выражение, которое она не могла понять.
Answer the questions:
What is the theme of the story?
What is the idea of the story?
Name the main characters of the story.
How old were Jim and Della?
Were they poor? Prove it.
What treasures did they own?
When and where did the events happen?
How did they both get money?
What presents did they buy?
Did Della and Jim love each other? Prove it.
Why did Jim smile at the end of the story?
What kind of people were Della and Jim? (kind, friendly, generous, attentive, sincere, calm, devoted, patient). Prove your idea.
Are the following statements true or false?
It was the eve of New Year’s Day.
Della and Jim were very rich.
They owned two treasures of which they were very proud.
Della didn’t find a present for Jim.
Jim’s present was very useful for him.
Jim was very angry when he saw that Della had cut her hair.
Complete the sentences.
Jim and Della lived in… in a small… on the …floor of a high…
All they got went to pay for…
Della found a present at last. It was…for which she paid…
Jim entered the room. He looked… and very…
Della took off the paper. There lay the beautiful…
7. Translate the sentences.
1. Муж и жена работали очень тяжело, но в доме никогда не было денег.
2. Все же у них были два сокровища, которыми они очень гордились.
3. Она села на диван и заплакала.
4. Следующие два часа были похожи на волшебный сон.
5. Через 40 минут ее голова была покрыта мелкими завитушками.
6. Она услышала шаги на лестнице и на мгновение она побледнела.
7. Я хотела подарить тебе подарок.
8. Act out the dialogue between Della and Jim.
9. Retell the text.
Краткое описание документа:
Текст для внеклассного чтения по английскому языку "The Two Gifts" (автор О.Генри). Предназначен для учащихся 8-9 классов. Материал содержит краткую информацию об авторе, а также 9 заданий по тексту, такие как нахождение соответствия, ответы на вопросы, дополнение и перевод предложений, составление диалогов,
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