Chapter 4 The Rattrap Class 12 Flamingo English NCERT Summary

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Chapter 4 The Rattrap Class 12 Flamingo English NCERT Summary provide a structured approach to learning, making it easier for students to grasp and retain information. By following these notes prepared by, students can build a strong foundation of knowledge that will be beneficial for their academic success.

Chapter 4 Class 12 Flamingo English NCERT Notes are designed in a systematic manner to help students strengthen their understanding of various concepts.

Chapter 4 The Rattrap Class 12 Flamingo NCERT Notes

About the Chapter

The Rattrap is a story about a poor rattrap seller who has a hard time making ends meet because he doesn’t make much money. He has to steal and beg to make ends meet, and he lives a lonely, miserable life. In an effort to deal with his problems, he jumbles his thoughts together. One of them is that the world is a huge rattrap.

About the Author

Selma Lagerlöf was a renowned novelist, achieved a significant milestone in 1909 by becoming the first woman and first Swedish writer to be awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. Her literary works have gained international recognition and have been translated into numerous languages.

The Rattrap Class 12 Flamingo English NCERT Summary

A rattrap peddler walked around selling small rattraps of wire. Due to the lack of profitability in his business, he had no choice but to resort to begging and stealing to sustain himself. This unfortunate situation left him in dire circumstances – his clothes were torn and tattered, his cheeks appeared hollow and gaunt, and the desperation for food was evident in his eyes. His existence was depressing and repetitive. He had no one to talk to.

One day while he was thinking about his rattraps he realized that the world itself was a rattrap led him to see parallels between the traps he had been making and the nature of human existence. He found amusement in imagining certain individuals who were already trapped in the complexities and struggles of life, while others were desperately striving to attain their desires, much like mice trying to reach the bait in a rattrap. This thought sparked a deeper contemplation on the universal trap that humanity finds itself in, and perhaps a reflection on the futility of chasing after materialistic desires.

On a dark evening, he was walking slowly and came across a little gray cottage by the roadside. Seeking shelter for the night, he knocked on the door and was greeted by an old man who lived alone. The old man was pleased to have someone to talk to in his loneliness and gladly welcomed the traveler. For supper, he served him porridge and even provided tobacco for his pipe. To pass the time, they played a card game called “mjölis” until it was time to go to bed.

The crofter was generous and trustworthy. He openly shared with the peddler that he owned a cow and sold its milk to a creamery. Also, he disclosed that he had received thirty kronors as payment for the milk in the previous month. To prove his words, the crofter took out a pouch and displayed the money to the peddler. Once he showed it, he carefully put the money back into the pouch and hung it on a nail located in the window frame of his house.

The crofter locked his cottage and left, unknowingly leaving behind a temptation for the peddler. The peddler, unable to resist the lure of the money hanging in the window frame, succumbs to his desire and breaks into the cottage to steal it. However, he soon realizes that it is not safe for him to continue on the public highway with the stolen money. In an attempt to evade capture, he seeks refuge in the nearby woods. Unfortunately, he becomes confused and finds himself trapped in a never-ending cycle of walking in circles. Exhausted and hopeless, he views the forest as a metaphorical rattrap that has ensnared him. Believing his demise is near, he lay down to die.

After a while, he could hear the rhythmic thumping of hammer strokes. He recognized the noise as coming from Ramsjo Ironworks. As he followed the sound of the hammer’s strokes, he eventually arrived at Ramsjo Ironworks. The master smith and his helper were engrossed in their work, patiently waiting for the pig iron to heat up and become malleable on the anvil. Surrounding them were various sounds that filled the forge, from the deep groaning of the big bellows to the cracking of burning coal. The fire boy worked vigorously, shoveling charcoal with a noisy clatter, while outside, the constant roar of a nearby waterfall mixed with the sharp winds that whipped rain against the brick-tiled roof. Amidst this uproar, neither the master smith nor his helper noticed a man quietly enter the forge until he stood right beside the blazing furnace.

The ironmaster fixed his gaze on the peddler’s face. He was certain that the peddler was one of his old regimental comrades, Captain von Stahle, who had died in battle. He invited the peddler to spend Christmas with him. However, the peddler was concerned. Worried about potential risks and uncertain circumstances, the peddler politely and firmly declined the offer.

After the ironmaster went home, he decided to send his daughter Edla to convince the peddler to return with her. Edla approached the peddler with kindness and spoke gently, gaining his trust and confidence. On the way, he felt bad about stealing the crofter’s money that had put him in a trap. The ironmaster was overjoyed to have his old regimental comrade living with him. He intended to feed him well and provide him a decent work. The peddler’s hair was trimmed, he was shaved, and he was bathed by the servant. The peddler emerged, dressed in one of the ironmaster’s best suits. However, in daylight, the ironmaster realized that the man was not captain von Stahle as he had initially believed. This realization led to feelings of mistrust and deception, causing the ironmaster to think about handing him over to the sheriff.

The peddler said he hadn’t lied about being someone he wasn’t. he further explained that he had initially refused to go to the ironmaster’s house. He was even willing to put on his ragged clothes and leave immediately. The peddler also warned the ironmaster that the world was like a rattrap, suggesting that he himself might one day fall into a tempting trap. The ironmaster ordered the peddler to depart without delay.

Edla felt a strong sense of empathy towards the poor peddler and disagreed with her father’s decision to ask him to leave. She believed that it was unjust to turn away someone they had purposely invited into their home. Edla’s compassionate nature led her to desire the opportunity to bring joy to a homeless wanderer on such a special night like Christmas Eve. She bravely intervened and stopped the peddler from leaving. Her father approved of her stopping the peddler.

Edla served food to the peddler. He was given Christmas gifts, which he gratefully accepted. Edla informed him that the peddler’s suit was also a Christmas present from her father. She told him that if he wanted to spend the next Christmas Eve with them, he would be welcome.

The following morning, the ironmaster and his daughter attended church where they received news about the peddler. They discovered that he was actually a thief who had stolen from the crofter. This revelation left the ironmaster convinced that the peddler had stolen silver spoons from the cupboard. Edla, was dejected. However, upon returning home, they were relieved to find out that the peddler had left without taking anything from them. In fact, he had even left a Christmas present specifically for Edla as a gesture of goodwill.

After opening the present, Edla discovered a small rattrap inside. Edla was pleased to find that the peddler had left behind the crofter’s money. Alongside the rattrap, there was also a letter specifically addressed to Edla. In the letter, the sender expressed gratitude for her kindness and wished to repay her in some way. To do so, they had returned the crofter’s money and requested that she return it to its rightful owner. He stated to have been promoted to captain. That was how he was able to free himself from the rattrap in which he had been entangled. The letter was signed by Captain von Stahle.

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