Sympathy by Charles Mackay

Introduction

In this poem, the author explains that sympathy is a heavenly virtue because it cannot be repaid, in contrast to monetary assistance, which may be paid back.

Summary of Sympathy

The Poem ‘Sympathy’ has been authored by Charles Mackay. In this poem, the virtue of “Sympathy” has been explained very beautifully. The states that sympathy is more valuable than gold. The poet concluded by narrating real-life situations.

The poet claims that he was formerly depressed, disturbed, apprehensive, and in poor physical health. When a wealthy man learned of him, he offered him money but showed no sympathy or empathy toward him. The poet spent the money, and his grief subsided. After recovering, the poet returned his money and thanked the proud man for his assistance, as well as blessings for his charitable work.

After some time, the poet found himself in the same state of grief and physical frailty. A poor man passed by him at this time. He became aware of his grief. The impoverished man assisted the poet by caring for him. The poor man bound his head and fed him food. He took care of the poet all day and night. After some time, the poet healed and regained his health, but he has no idea how to repay the poor man for his assistance and sympathy. According to the poet, the virtue of “Sympathy” is greater than wealth.

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Theme of Sympathy

The poem “Sympathy” was written by Charles Mackay. The poet describes two sorts of assistance he received from a powerful guy and a poor man in this poem. A haughty man gave the poet money, while a poor man showed him kindness and sympathy. This poem’s core purpose is to develop moral principles such as sympathy among humans. It is not repayable by physical exchange. The poet believed that while gold is valuable, the virtue of “Sympathy” is superior.

Reading is Fun | Questions and Answers

1. When the poet was unhappy, who helped him and how?

Ans. When the poet was unhappy, the proud man helped him out by giving him gold.

2. When and how did the poet pay the rich man back?

Ans. When the rich man got better, the man gave the gold back to him.

3. How did the poor man show his sympathy to the poet?

Ans. The poor man tended to the poet around-the-clock. His head was bound, and he was given bread. The poor man stood by the poet till he regained his health.

4. The poet, could not pay back the poor man, why?

Ans. Sympathy is a feeling of caring and love for someone or something. It is not based on any selfish motive. It is not something you can pay back like gold or money. So, the poet couldn’t give the poor man his money back.

5. Why is sympathy, said to be heavenly?

Ans. It is said that sympathy is heavenly since it is not motivated by selfishness. It originates from within. It is a source of joy. It could not be repaid in precious metals or other valuables.

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Language Work

1. Unscramble the words given in brackets and fill in the blanks. The first one is done for you as an example.

Gold is a __________ metal. (RESPUICO)

We must be very __________ to the poor (DINK)

Sympathy is, considered as __________. (LYNHEAEV)

Kind people are always __________. (FLUPLEH)

The __________ (CHIRNAM) helped the poet with gold.

We must respect our __________. (RETASHCE)

The poor man __________ (DAHCEWT) the poet day and night.

Ans.

Gold is a precious metal. (RESPUICO)

We must be very kind to the poor (DINK)

Sympathy is, considered as heavenly. (LYNHEAEV)

Kind people are always helpful. (FLUPLEH)

The rich man (CHIRNAM) helped the poet with gold.

We must respect our teachers. (RETASHCE)

The poor man watched (DAHCEWT) the poet day and night.

2. You can find verbs in the poem. Read the poem once again and find out the verbs and write three forms of these verbs. First one is done for you as an example.

3. An abstract noun is the name of a quality, state, feeling, or idea that can only be thought of or felt but cannot be seen or touched.

Write the answers to the following questions selecting words from those given.

All the words are abstract nouns.

Honesty Laziness Kindness Foolishness Anger Cruelty Bravery Politeness Strength Generosity

What quality does a kind man show? ____________

What quality does an honest man show? ____________

What quality does a foolish man show? ____________

What quality does an angry man show? ____________

What quality does a cruel man show? ____________

What quality does a strong man show? ____________

What quality does a generous man show? ____________

What quality does a brave man show? ____________

What quality does a polite man show? ____________

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What quality does a lazy man show? ____________

Ans.

What quality does a kind man show? Kindness

What quality does an honest man show? Honesty

What quality does a foolish man show? Foolishness

What quality does an angry man show? Anger

What quality does a cruel man show? Cruelty

What quality does a strong man show? Strength

What quality does a generous man show? Generosity

What quality does a brave man show? Bravery

What quality does a polite man show? Politeness

What quality does a lazy man show? Laziness

Exercise

Underline the abstract nouns in the following sentences:

Answer.

Life is full of happiness.

Laughter is good medicine.

The rose has a sweet fragrance.

Kindness never goes unrewarded.

The cruelty of a cruel king made him unpopular.

The principal was pleased with the honesty of his staff.

Mother Teresa showed kindness to poor people.

Poverty can be eliminated by hard work.

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