CBSE Class 10 English Language & Literature 2019 Question Paper

Time allowed is 3 hours and maximum marks is 80. The Question paper is divided into three sections:

  • Section A - Reading 20 marks
  • Section B - Writing and Grammar 30 marks
  • Section C - Literature 30 marks

This question paper contains 11 questions.

Section A - (Reading) 20 marks

1. Read the passage given below and answer the questions that follow :

1 Keep your watch accurate. For some people, moving up the time on their watch will help them get up earlier. For others, they will remember that the time on the watch is wrong and will disregard it altogether. It may be helpful to set your watch just two minutes ahead instead of five or ten.

2 Keep a clock, phone, computer or anything that displays time in each room of your house. One of the easiest ways to run late is simply by not realising that the time is passing as quickly as it is.

3 Set all your clocks and watches to the same time. Don’t be an optimist. Things usually take longer than what you’d expect, even without major delays. If you have a dinner appointment at 7·30 p.m., don’t think you can work till 7 p.m., then take a bath, dress and reach on time. Realistically, calculate the time you will take at each step and then add 10 minutes more to allow for unexpected delays, or you cannot get to your job in time.

4 Wake up when you are supposed to wake up. Don’t hit the snooze button, keep on lying in bed, and watch TV at the very start of your day. Maybe try even setting your clock 10 minutes earlier than you need. If you have difficulty with this, move your alarm clock to somewhere away from your bed; that way, you have to get up to turn it off. Commit yourself to being 15 minutes early for everything. If you have to reach your place of work at 8·00, don’t even tell yourself this. Just tell yourself (and everyone else who listens - but don’t annoy them or make them think that they are late or early!) ‘‘I have to be at work at 7·45.’’ If you do this, you will be on time even with little unforeseen delays. You will be on time even with a traffic jam.

1.1 Complete the following statements using words/phrases from the passage. Attempt any eight. 1×8=8

(a) Some people believe that if ______ it will help them be earlier.

(b) Many others know ___________ they disregard it altogether.

(c) Keep ___________ in each room.

(d) One of the things that can be done is ________ of five or ten minutes.

(e) Many a time we do not realise that ___________ .

(f) Instead of pressing the snooze button ___________ .

(g) If you have difficulty in getting up ___________.

(h) It is a good habit to ________ somewhere away from your bed.

(i) It is good to commit yourself __________ for everything.

2. Read the passage given below and answer the questions that follow :

1 Music is perhaps the most popular and widely practised form of Fine Arts, transcending all kinds of cultural and linguistic barriers. Any form of fine art is difficult to master and almost impossible to perfect and music is no exception.

2 Nature, it is learnt, has blessed almost two-thirds of the human race with musical ability of some sort. Music has the power to bring out the deepest emotions. It can make one cry or bring a smile on one’s face. In fact it is a magic medicine and many seek refuge in it when they are depressed or stressed. It is this intimacy that makes us listen to music or even hum or sing sometimes. This singing, or realistically speaking, expressing one’s emotion musically sometimes takes a serious turn. This desire to show musical expression in public then becomes a serious business profession. And from here the musical journey begins.

3 This desire to sing before an audience is innocent and beautiful and indeed it is perfectly alright to have such a genuine desire. But it is also important to understand that singing is an intricate art - a highly refined one at that, which requires systematic, prolonged and strict training, to be acceptable. This is an aspect we forget in our keen desire to reach the stage and perform. It is almost like preparing a formal meal for some specially invited guests, without even having learnt and trained in the basics of cooking. This is why we have more noise and less music nowadays.

4 These days almost everyone sings and it does not stop here. Most of us want to become professional singers. Result : a complete disregard for and ignorance of the training part, as the need is never felt to go through one and the urge to get to the stage and perform overcomes even a little desire to learn, if any. If at all, somewhere along the way one feels the need to gain some knowledge and training, it leads to hurried shortcuts and half-hearted attempts, best described as ‘Crash Courses’.

5 It is observed that those who have attained the so called partial success, suddenly feel that they lack the required knowledge and are not learned enough. But it is too late by then. It should be understood here that the stage or a performance brings in a different mindset within the artist. It is always recommended and rightly said, that while on stage, cover the mistakes and weaknesses if any, and get along. But the contrary is true when it comes to acquiring knowledge and during the learning process. While under training, the student is expected to make mistakes but then rectify those mistakes under the supervision and guidance of the teacher. Therefore, it is good to make mistakes and then be corrected during the process of learning as this subsequently makes one flawless and educated. This is a different mindset. And these two mindsets discussed above, (those of a performer and that of a student) cannot co-exist.

2.1 On the basis of your understanding of the above passage, answer any four of the following questions in 30 – 40 words each : 2×4=8

(a) The desire to sing in public overcomes the need to train. Elaborate.

(b) How can we say that music is a magic medicine ?

(c) What is best described as ‘Crash Courses’ ?

(d) What should be the mindset of a student of music ?

(e) Why is singing a refined and intricate art ?

2.2 On the basis of your understanding of the above passage, answer any four of the following : 1×4=4

(a) Almost _________ of human population is blessed with musical ability of some sort.
(i) two-thirds (ii) one-third
(iii) half (iv) one-fifth

(b) Any form of ________ ________ is difficult to master.
(i) visual art (ii) audio-visual art
(iii) fine arts (iv) design art

(c) ‘Transcending’ in para 1 means
(i) drown under (ii) rise above
(iii) surrender (iv) fail

(d) ‘Refuge’ in para 2 means
(i) shelter from rain (ii) shelter from storm
(iii) shelter from unhappiness (iv) shelter from sun

(e) ‘Partial’ in para 5 means
(i) unfair (ii) incomplete
(iii) whole (iv) total

Section B - (Writing and Grammar) 30 marks

3. As a health conscious person, you have noticed an advertisement in a newspaper on yoga classes in your neighbourhood. Write a letter in 100 - 120 words to the Organiser, Yoga for Public, R.K. Puram, New Delhi requesting him/her to send you information about the duration of the course and other relevant details. You are Shweta/Srikar of 15, R.K. Puram, New Delhi .


You have noticed that the number of vehicles is steadily increasing in your city. There are long traffic jams causing a lot of inconvenience to the road users. Write an article in 100 – 120 words on the topic, ‘Problem of Traffic Jams in Metropolitan Cities’. You are Renu/Rajan.

4. Complete the story in 200 – 250 words, which begins as the following, providing an appropriate title also.

Mukesh, the grocer, was very greedy. He would mix stones in pulses and coloured sand in spices and sell them to the poor villagers. The villagers complained to him but he turned a deaf ear to them, as his was the only grocery store in the village. The villagers, then decided .... .... ....


It was 10 p.m. I was alone at home. Suddenly I heard a knock on the door ... .... ....

5. Fill in the blanks in the paragraph given below by choosing the most appropriate options from the ones that follow. Attempt any four. Write the answers in your answer sheet against the correct blank numbers. 1×4=4

The caves of Ajanta and Ellora (a) the magnificent works of sculpture. Whoever (b) there (c) spellbound. Thousands (d) tourists visit these places every year. One can stay (e) the guest houses.

(a) (i) is (ii) are (iii) was (iv) were

(b) (i) go (ii) going (iii) goes (iv) went

(c) (i) becomes (ii) became (iii) becoming (iv) has become

(d) (i) for (ii) of (iii) from (iv) at

(e) (i) on (ii) over (iii) upon (iv) in

6. In the following paragraph, one word has been omitted in each line. Write the missing word along with the word that comes before and the word that comes after it against the correct blank number. The first one has been done for you. Attempt any four. 1×4=4

Word before / Missing Word / word after

The tiny island of Rameswaram South India e.g. Rameswaram in South
is one of the four Dhams. According to legend (a) ________ _______ ________
it was from here that Lord Rama the help of (b) ________ ________ _______
Hanuman and Sugreev and his monkey force
built a stone bridge Lanka just 24 kilometres (c) ________ ________ _______
away. The main attraction of island (d) ________ ________ _______
is the Ramanathaswamy Temple is a (e) ________ ________ _______
magnificent example of Dravidian architecture.

7. Rearrange any four of the following groups of words/phrases to make meaningful sentences : 1×4=4

(a) of mankind / reading is / one of / pleasures / the greatest

(b) we / enjoy / the / much more / borrowed ones / our own books / reading / than

(c) book / carefully / must be / with / a borrowed / treated

(d) book / afraid of / you should / writing notes on / not be / your own

(e) should begin / one / a private library / one’s youth / building / in

Section C - (Literature) 30 marks

8. Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow : 1×4=4

The baker usually collected his bills at the end of the month. Monthly accounts used to be recorded on some wall in pencil. Baking was indeed a profitable profession in the old days. The baker and his family never starved. He, his family and his servants always looked happy and prosperous. Their plump physique was an open testimony to this. Even
today any person with a jackfruit-like physical appearance is easily compared to a baker.

(a) Where did the baker record his accounts ?

(b) Why did the baker and his family never starve ?

(c) Which word in the extract is a synonym of ‘rich’ ?

(d) How can a baker be identified in Goa ?


Now the name of the little black kitten was Ink,
And the little gray mouse, she called him Blink,
And the little yellow dog was sharp as Mustard,
But the dragon was a coward, and she called him Custard.

(a) Name the poem and its poet.

(b) What is the colour of Belinda’s dog ?

(c) What were the kitten and the mouse called ?

(d) Which word in the stanza is the antonym of ‘dull’ ?

9. Answer any four of the following questions in 30 – 40 words each : 2×4=8

(a) Why did Lencho write a letter to God ?

(b) How did Chubukov react when Lomov asked for the hand of his daughter in marriage ?

(c) Where in the classroom does Wanda sit and why ?

(d) How did Ebright’s mother help him in becoming a scientist ?

(e) Why does Anil not hand Hari Singh over to the police ?

10. Answer the following question in 100 - 120 words : 

Mme Forestier proved to be a true friend of the Loisels. Elaborate.


Why did Gotami go to the Buddha ? What lesson did he teach her ?

11. Answer the following question in 200 – 250 words :

Justify the title, ‘The Diary of A Young Girl’.


Write a character sketch of Anne Frank.


What type of relationship did Miss Anne Sullivan and Helen share ?


Write a character sketch of Alexander Graham Bell.

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