Long Questions and Answers
Question 1 : The principle ‘forgive and forget’ , helps a lot in maintaining cordial relations with our neighbours. Do you think Anton Chekov conveys this message in the play ‘The Proposal’?
Answer : Anton Chekov does convey the message that the principle of ‘forgive and forget’ helps a lot in maintaining cordial relationship with one’s neighbours. Initially, the neighbours in the play, Lomov, Natalya and Chubukov were fighting over petty issues. They were putting important issues behind them and wasting their time by arguing over small things . These arguments slowly developed into fights and they started hurling abuses at one another. This damaged their relationship with each other.
It was when Natalya came to know that Lomov had come to propose her she left the topic of argument (Oxen Meadows) behind. She also asked for forgiveness from Lomov and requested him to come to the point. This shows that whether they fought unnecessarily upon insignificant issues like breed of dog etc but when it was about the marriage proposal, they forgot their enmity and agreed to marry. Even Chubukov who was insulted by Lomov enjoyed the moment and agreed for their marriage. Hence, it is mandatory to ‘forgive and forget’ if one wants to have cordial relationship with others.
Question 2 : Neighbours must have a cordial relationship which Lomov and Natalya do not have. Describe the first fight between them.
Answer : Lomov meets Natalya and rather than proposing her he gets off the point. He tells her how he inherited his land and how he respects her father. He also tells Natalya that his Oxen Meadows touch Natalya’s Birchwood. On hearing this, Natalya says that Oxen Meadows are theirs. They start arguing about it. Lomov clarifies that he is talking about the Oxen Meadows that are between her Birchwoods and burnt marsh.
Natalya again insists that they are theirs. Lomov refuses it. He tells her that his aunt’s grandmother gave those meadows to her father’s grandfather. The peasants used the land for forty years and started regarding it as their own.
Natalya’s father comes and also starts quarrelling with Lomov. They get into heated argument and resort to name-calling after some time, Lomov leaves their house.