HCS Mains Previous Year Paper 2009: English and English Essay
Baljit Dhaka

HCS Mains Previous Year Paper 2009: English and English Essay

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HCS Mains Previous Year Paper 2009

HCS Mains-2009 English and English Essay 

Time- 3 Hrs                                                                                                                                      M.M 100

Note: Attempt all questions. The marks carried by each question are indicated at the end of the question. The parts of the same questions must be answered together and must not be interposed between answers to other questions.

1.Make a precis of the following passage, reducing it to one-third of its length: (20)

A stamp is to many people, just a slip of paper that takes a letter from one town or country to another. They are unable to understand why we stamp collectors? find so much pleasure in collecting them and how we find the time in which to indulge in our hobby. To them, it seems a waste of time, a waste efforts, and a waste of money. But they do not realize that there are many who do buy stamps, many who find the effort worth-while, and many who would spend their time less profitably if they did not collect stamps. An album, a packet of hinges, a new supply of stamps, and the time passes swiftly and pleasantly. 

Stamp collecting has not limits and a collection never has an end. Countries are always printing and issuing new stamps to celebrate coronations, great events, anniversaries and death. And the fascination of collection is, trying to obtain these stamps before one's rivals. There is a history in every stamp. The ancient Roman empire and the constitution of America, India's Independence and the Allied victory -all are conveyed to our mind's eye by means of stamps. A stamp has a fascination of its own. Gazing at its little picture, we are transported to the wilds of congo, the homes of the arabs and the endless tracks of the Sahara Desert. We see famous men, picture, writers, scientists, soldiers, politicians and famous incidents on these small bits of paper.

Stamps, so small and minute, contain knowledge that is vast and important.

2.Read the following passage carefully and answers the questions that follow, in your own words  (20)

All great thinkers live and move on a high plane of thought. It is only there they can breathe freely. It is only in contact With spirits like themselves they can live harmoniously and attain that serenity that comes from that companionship. The studies of all great thinkers must range along with the highest altitude of human thought.  I cannot remember the name of any illuminative genius who did not drink his inspiration from fountains of ancient Greek and Hebrew writers; or such among the modems as were pupils in ancient thought, and, in turn, became masters in their own. I have always thought that the strongest argument in favor of the Baconian theory was, that no man could have written the plays and sonnets that have come down to us under Shakespeare's name who had not the liberal education of Bacon. How does this habit of intercourse with the gods make one impatient with mere men? The magnificent ideals that have ever haunted the human mind are splintered into atoms by contact with life's realities. You will notice that your first sensation after reading a great book is one of melancholy and dissatisfaction. The ideas, sentiments, expression, are so far beyond those of ordinary working life that you cannot turn aside from one to the other without an acute sensation and consciousness of the contrast. And the principles are so lofty, so super-human that it is a positive pain, to come down and mix in the squalid surroundings of ordinary humanity. A habitual meditation on the vast problems that underline human life, and are knit into human destinies-thoughts of immortality and the littleness of mere man, the greatness of man's soul, the splendors of the universe - these things do not fit men to understand the average human being or tolerate with patience the sordid wretchedness of the masses. It is easy to understand, therefore why such thinkers fly to the solitude of their own thoughts, or to the silent companionship of the immortals. And if they care to present their views in prose or verse to the world, that these views take a sombre and melancholy setting from "the pale cast of thought" in which they were engendered.


(a) On what plane must great thinkers live and move?

(b) Is a liberal education necessary to produce great literature?

(c) Why does the reading of a great book make one melancholy and disappointed, according to the author?

(d) What are the things that make it hard to understand the average human beings?


3.Write an essay in about 300 words on any ONE of the following: (30)

(a) The influence of Television on our lives. 

(b) "The man who will succeed in life is he, who can adapt himself easily.

(c) A thing of beauty is a joy forever.

(d) What can I do to save my planet?


4.Fill in the blanks with suitable forms of the words from the list given below: (5)

(damage, terror, strike, nutrition, measure)

(a) The tailor took my ________for stitching the suit.

(b) All my furniture was by ________the ?re.

(c) He __________a match to light the candle.

(d) Today, the whole world has become a victim of ___________.

(e) Soyabeans are _________as as meat.


5. Rewrite the following sentences as directed: (5)

(a) The innocents were punished. The guilty were punished. (Make a Compound Sentence)

(b) The man carrying the hoe is a gardener. (Convert into Complex sentence)

(c) I am writing a letter. (Change the Voice)

(d) You eat very quickly. (Add a suitable question tag)

(e) He said to me, ”What are you doing?"(Change the mode of narration.)


6. Suggest a one-word substitute for the following : (5) 

(a) A protected forest where hunting is banned.

(b) A person who makes statues out of stone.

(c) Something that includes the whole world.

(d) Something that never dies.

(e) The study of stars and planets.


7. Use the following idioms in your own sentences, bringing out the meaning:  (5)

(a) Sailing in the same boat.

(b) Bag and baggage

(c) At the eleventh hour

(d) Put the hands together

(e) To turn the tables.


8.Correct the following sentences : (10)

(a) He gave me a advice.

(b) Neither his father nor his mother are alive.

(c) Each of the girls have gone to the library.

(d) Where are your luggage?

(e) He has eaten two breads.

(f) Suresh told to me about it.

(g) I don't know nothing about the matter.

(h) It is ten O'clock in my watch.

(g) I bought a pen in ten rupees.

(h) Neha is senior than Rita.