Chapter 9

NCERT
Class 9
English
Solutions
II Irony is when we say one thing but mean another, usually the opposite of what we say.

Question:

Irony is when we say one thing but mean another, usually the opposite of what we say. When someone makes a mistake and you say, “Oh! that was clever!”, that is irony. You’re saying ‘clever’ to mean ‘not clever’.

Expressions we often use in an ironic fashion are :
1. Oh, wasn’t that clever!/Oh that was clever!
2. You have been a great help, I must say!
3. You’ve got yourself into a lovely mess, haven’t you?
4. Oh, very funny!/ How funny!

We use a slightly different tone of voice when we use these words ironically. Read the play carefully and find the words and expressions Gerrard uses in an ironic way. Then say what these expressions really mean. Two examples have been given below. Write down three more such expressions along with what they really mean.

What the author says What he means
Why, this is a surprise,
Mr—er—
He pretends that the intruder
is a social visitor whom he
is welcoming. In this way he
hides his fear.
At last a sympathetic audience! He pretends that the intruder
wants to listen to him, whereas
actually the intruder wants to
find out information for his
own use.

Answer:

What the author says What he means
You won’t kill me for a very
good reason.
Gerrard is just pretending to
have a ‘very good reason’
even though there is no such
reason.
Sorry I can’t let you have the
props in time for rehearsal.
I’ve had a spot of bother - quite
amusing.
The ‘spot of bother’ that
Gerrard calls ‘quite amusing’
is actually a life-threatening
situation, where a criminal
actually threatens to kill him.
You have been so modest. Here, Gerrard means that it
is immodest on the part of
the intruder to know so much
about him without disclosing
his own identity.

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