Monday, 18 November 2013



·         ROALD DAHL

·         Born – September, 13 1916.

·         Died – November 23, 1990.

·         He is famous as Novelist, Short story writer, poet, fighter pilot and screen writer.

·         Famous writings –

1) Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (1964)

2) The Magie Finger (1966)

3) Danny, the Champion of the World (1975)

4) Someone like you (1953)


            The story “The Invention of Vita – wonk” is taken from the novel “Charlie and the Glass Elevator”. It was first published in the year of 1972.


            Charlie was presented a chocolate factory and he wanted his family to help him to run it. But Georgina, George and Josephine, the old family members refused to help him. So, Mr. Wonka proposed a pill that he invented to make them young. The three bedridden old members of the family got greedy and took much more than they needed to. As a result instead of becoming near twenty years younger. The three grandparents lost eighty years. George became one year old, Josephine three months, and Georgina minus two.

            So to make them old again Charlie and Mr.  Wonka had a journey in the great glass elevator and discovered the formula to make people older. He took out all the most living elements in the world and prepared vita-wonk which made them again much older.


·         Wonka- Vite – A medicine to make a person young.

·         Vita- work – A medicine to make a person older.

·         Sleeves- The part of the garment that covers the arm.

·         Dendrochronologist – The science dealing with the study of the annual rings  of a trees in determining the dates.

·         Great glass Elevator – A machine used by Mr. Wonka to travel past.

·         Sap – Any vital body fluid.

·         Whiskers - One or two long, stiff hair growing on the mouth.

·         Grimalkin – An old female cat used in black magic.

·         Scraped- to draw or scratch.

·         Bubbling – A globule of air or gas (Here in water).

·         Volunteer – A person who offers himself or herself voluntarily for a service.

·         Wrinkling – a small furrow or crease in the skin.

·         Shriveling- To contract and wrinkle or to wither.


Q.2.     Can anyone’s age be a minus number? What does “minus 87” mean?

Ans.     Apparently no one can have age in minus. As for the story the author refers the age to be in minus because of the effect of Wonka- Vite.

            Minus 87 means that a person’s age has gone in minus and he will have to wait for long 87 years to come back to human life. He might have taken excessive dosage of the Wonka-Vite.

Q.3,     Mr. Wonka begins by asking himself two questions. What are they?

Ans.     1) What is the oldest living thing in the world?

            2) What lives longer than anything else?

Q.1.     i) What trees does Mr. Wonka mention? Which tree does he say lives the longest?

            ii) How long does this tree live? Where can you find it?

Ans.  I) In conversation with Charlie about his invention of vita-wonk, he mentions some trees. They are-

1)      Douglas fir 2) The oak, and 3) Cedar. Besides, he mentioned about Bristle cone Pine.

ii) According to Mr. Wonka, Bristle cone Pine lives more than 4000 years. It can be found in the hills of wheeler Park in Nevada, U.S.A.

Q.2.     How many of the oldest living things can you remember from Mr. wonka’s list? (Do not look back at the story)

            Do you think all these things really exist, or are some of them purely imaginary.

Ans.     Indeed, most of the matters related to Mr. wonka’s list are fanciful. There is no real base of the items listed for preparing the vita-wonk. Some of the following strongly hint to be imaginary.

            i) The knuckle-bones of a 700 year – old cattaloo from Peru.

            ii) The tail of a 200 year old giant Rat from Tibet.

            iii) The tail of a 51 year old horse in Arabia etc.

Q.3.     Why does Mr. Wonka collect items from the oldest things? Do you think this is the right way to begin his invention?

Ans.     Mr. Wonka collected the oldest things with the target of making Vita – Wonk which would make people older. As he wanted to make people older so he decided to collect all the oldest things.

            Perhaps this could be the way to invent Vita – Wonk. His target was to make people old. So this may be the right way. But on realistic ground this seems to be impractical.

Q. 4.    What happens to the volunteer who swallows four drops of the new inventions? What is the name of the invention?

Ans.     The Vita – Wonk was a big success when it was applied on the twenty year old Oompa – Loompa . When he consumed four drops, he began wrinkling and got shriveled up all over his body. His hair started to drop off and his teeth started falling out. The twenty year old Oompa – Loompa turned into an old person of seventy five.

-          The Name of the invention was Vita – Wonk. 

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