1. Who were called as daimios?
Ans- In nineteenth century Japan, wealthy landowners were called as Daimios. They were the territorial magnates who dominated much of thecountry from about the 11th to the 19th century.
2. How did the old couple take care of Muko, the dog?
Ans- The couple had been good and generous. As they had no children, they loved it as though it were a baby. The old dame made it a cushion of blue crape, and at mealtime Muko—for that was its name—would sit on it as snug as any cat. The kind people fed the pet with tidbits of fish from their own chopsticks, and all the boiled rice it wanted.
3. How did the dog love the old couple?
Ans- The old couple took care of the dog as if it were a baby. The dog too was very much in love with the old couple. So the dumb creature loved its protectors like a being with a soul.
4. What was the profession of the old man?
Ans- The old man was a farmer. He was a rice farmer and he went daily with hoe or spade into the fields, working hard from morning until O Tento Sama (as the sun is called) had gone down behind the hills.
5. How was the dog good to the herons?
Ans- Like the good old couple, the dog was also good natured. When the farmer used to go to the field in work the dog used to follow him. The dog never harmed the white heron that walked in the footsteps of the old man to pick up the worms.
6. How was the old farmer kind to any living being?
Ans- The old famer was very kind to everything that had life .He considered his pet Muko as his own child and took care of him in the same way .Besides when he used to go to work in the field he used to turn up a sod on purpose to give food to the birds.
7. How did the dog behave one day and how did the old farmer react to it?
Answer- One day while working in the field the dog came running to him, putting his paws against his legs and motioning with his head to some spot behind. The old man at first thought his pet was only playing and did not mind it.
8. How did the dog find the treasure for the first time
Answer- At first the old farmer did not mind the unusual behavior of the dog .But when the dog kept whining and running to and fro for some minutes, the old man followed the dog a few yards to a place where the animal began a lively scratching. Thinking it was possibly a buried bone or bit of fish, the old man struck his hoe in the earth. And at an instance came out a pile of gold coins.
9. How did the good old couple celebrate after they got rich?
Answer- After the good old couple got the unexpected treasure they bought a piece of land, made a feast for their friends, and gave plentifully to their poor neighbours. As for the dog, they petted him till they nearly smothered him with kindness.
10. How was the wicked old couple?
Answer- In the same village there lived a wicked old man and his wife, not a bit sensitive and kind, who had always kicked and scolded all dogs whenever any passed their house.
11. How did the wicked old couple coax Muko?
Answer- When the wicked old couple heard about the good luck of their neighbours, they coaxed the dog into their garden and set before him bits of fish and other dainties, hoping he would find treasure for them. But the dog, being afraid of the cruel pair, would neither eat nor move.
12. What did Muko find for the wicked old couple?
Answer- When the wicked old couple dragged Muko out of doors, taking a spade and hoe with them, the dog got near a pine tree growing in the garden than he began to paw and scratch the ground, as if a mighty treasure lay beneath. At this the greedy old fellow started to dig the land with hoe and spade. But they found nothing but a dead kitten, the smell of which made them drop their tools and shut their noses.
13. How did the wicked couple kill Muko?
Answer- When wicked couple could not find any treasure directed by the dog, they went furious at the dog. The old man kicked and beat him to death, and the old woman finished the work by nearly chopping off his head with the sharp hoe. They then flung him into the hole and heaped the earth over his carcass.
14. How did the good old man mourn over Muko’s death?
Answer- Hearing the news of the demise of his pert, he mourned as if he had been his own child. At night he went under the pine tree set up some bamboo tubes in the ground, such as are used before tombs, in which he put fresh flowers. Then he laid a cup of water and a tray of food on the grave and burned several costly sticks of incense. He mourned a great while over his pet, calling him many dear names, as if he were alive.
15.What did the dog say in the dream of the old farmer?
Answer- The night when the good old man mourned a lot at the grave of the dead pet, the spirit of the dog appeared to him in a dream and said, to cut down the pine tree over his grave, and make from it a mortar for his rice pastry and a mill for his bean sauce.
16. How did the good old man make the mortar for the rice pastry?
Answer- As instructed by the spirit of the dog, the old man chopped down the tree and cut out of the middle of the trunk a section about two feet long. With great labour, partly by fire, partly by the chisel, he scraped out a hollow place as big as a small bowl. He then made a long handled hammer of wood, such as is used for pounding rice.
17. What happened when the good old famer tried to make rice pastry on New Year’s Eve?
Answer- When New Years’ time drew near, the good old farmer wished to make some rice pastry. When the rice was all boiled, granny put it into the mortar, the old man lifted his hammer to pound the mass into dough, and the blows fell heavy and fast till the pastry was all ready for baking. Suddenly the whole mass turned into a heap of gold coins.
18. What happened when the good old lady tried to make bean sauce using the mill?
Answer- After the good old farmer got gold coins from the mortar, the good old lady thought to make bean sauce. When she took the hand-mill, and filling it with beans began to grind, the gold dropped like rain.
19. What happened to the wicked old couple when they used the mortar and the mill to get rich?
Answer- When the wicked hag secretly watched the good old couple getting rich with the mortar and the mill they thought to give it a try. The next day the stingy and wicked neighbour came and borrowed the mortar and magic mill. They filled one with boiled rice and the other with beans.
Then the old man began to pound and the woman to grind. But at the first blow and turn, the pastry and sauce turned into a foul mass of worms.
20. What did the wicked old couple do when they could not become rich with the help of the mortar and the mill?
Answer- When the wicked old couple got nothing but foul mass of worms, after using the mortar and the mill, they went furious. Out of anger, they chopped the mill into pieces, to use as firewood.
21. What did the spirit of the old dog say to the good old man for the second time in his dream?
Answer- After the wicked old couple chopped the mortar and the mill to use as firewood, the dog appeared in the dream of the good old man and told him how the wicked people had burned the mill made from the pine tree and instructed him to take the ashes of the mill, sprinkle them on the withered trees, and they will bloom again.
22. What were the wicked old couple doing when the good old man went to ask for the ash?
Answer- Guided by the spirit of the dog when the good old man went to ask for the ash from the wicked neighbours, he found the miserable old pair sitting at the edge of their square fireplace, in the middle of the floor, smoking and spinning. From time to time they warmed their hands and feet with the blaze from some bits of the mill, while behind them lay a pile of the broken pieces.
23. How did the wicked pair behave when the good old man went to ask for the ash?
Answer- When the good old man asked for the ash from the wicked old couple, the covetous couple turned up their noses at him and scolded him as if he were a thief. But they let him fill his basket with the ashes.
24. How did the good old man bloom the withered cherry tree for the first time?
Answer- After returning home with the ash, the old man took his wife into the garden. It being winter, their favourite cherry tree was bare. He sprinkled a pinch of ashes on it, and it sprouted blossoms until it became a cloud of pink blooms which perfumed the air
25. In the days of the Daimios what was the custom when a Daimio used to pass by?
Answer- In the days of the daimios, it was the custom, when their lord passed by, for all the loyal people to shut up their high windows. They even pasted them fast with a slip of paper, so as not to commit the impertinence of looking down on his lordship. All the people along the road would fall upon their hands and knees and remain prostrate until the procession passed by.
26. What was the work of the tall competent man?
Answer- Before the train of the Daimio, there was a competent man who used to control the people around. He marched ahead, crying out to the people by the way, “Get down on your knees! Get down on your knees!” And every one kneeled down while the procession was passing.
27. Why did the tall competent man pretend to ignore the old man on the tree?
Answer- When the tall competent man of the van caught sight of the aged man up in the tree? He was about to call out to him in an angry tone, but, seeing he was such an old fellow, he pretended not to notice him and passed him by.
28. What did the good old man do when the train of the Daimio reached near and how did the Daimio react?
Answer- When the daimio’s palanquin drew near, the old man, taking a pinch of ashes from his basket, scattered it over the tree.In a moment it burst into blossom.
Seeing this the Daimio was delighted and ordered the train to be stopped and got out to see the wonder. Calling the old man to him, he thanked him and ordered presents of silk robes, sponge-cake, fans and other rewards to be given him. He even invited him to his castle.
29. Listening the story of the good old man what did the wicked old man desire?
Answer- When the greedy neighbour heard of the story of good old man and Daimio, he took some of the magic ashes and went out on the highway. There he waited until a daimio’s train came along and, instead of kneeling down like the crowd, he climbed a withered cherry tree. He also desired to be privileged by the Daimio.
30. What happened when the wicked old man tried to bloom the withered tree with the ash?
Answer- Like the good old man, the wicked old man too had a desire to impress the Daimio by blooming the tree with the magic ash. So when the daimio himself was almost directly under him, he threw a handful of ashes over the tree, which did not change a particle. The wind blew the fine dust in the noses and eyes of the daimio and his wife. Such sneezing and choking! It spoiled all the pomp and dignity of the procession.
31. How was the wicked old man punished to death?
Answer- After the sprinkling of ash by the wicked old man destroyed the grandeur of the train, the man whose business it was to cry, “Get down on your knees,” seized the old fool by the collar, dragged him from the tree, and tumbled him and his ash-basket into the ditch by the road. Then, beating him soundly, he left him for dead.