CBSE Class 10 English Language & Literature 2020 Question Paper

Question paper comprises three sections - A, B and C. Section A is Reading of 20 marks. Section B is Writing & Grammar of 30 marks. Section C is Literature of 30 marks. There are 11 questions in the question paper. All questions are compulsory.

Section - A (Reading)

1. Read the following passage carefully.

(1) Caged behind thick glass, the most famous dancer in the world can easily be missed in the National Museum, Delhi. The Dancing Girl of Mohenjo-Daro is that rare artefact that even school children are familiar with. Our school textbooks also communicate the wealth of our 5000 year heritage of art. You have to be alert to her existence there, amid terracotta animals to rediscover this bronze image.

(2) Most of us have seen her only in photographs or sketches therefore the impact of actually holding her is magnified a million times over. One discovers that the dancing girl has no feet. She is small, a little over 10 cm tall - the length of a human palm - but she surprises us with the power of great art - the ability to communicate across centuries.

(3) A series of bangles - of shell or ivory or thin metal - clothe her left upper arm all the way down to her fingers. A necklace with three pendants bunched together and a few bangles above the elbow and wrist on the right hand display an almost modern art.

(4) She speaks of the undaunted ever hopeful human spirit. She reminds us that it is important to visit museums in our country to experience the impact that a work of art leaves on our senses, to find among all the riches one particular vision of beauty that speaks to us alone.

1.1 On the basis of your reading of the above passage answer the following questions. 1 × 8 = 8

(a) The dancing girl belongs to

(i) Mohenjo-Daro (ii) Greek culture
(iii) Homosapiens (iv) Tibet

(b) In the museum she’s kept among

(i) dancing figures (ii) bronze statues
(iii) terracotta animals (iv) books

(c) Which information is not given in the passage ?

(i) The girl is caged behind glass.
(ii) She is a rare artefact.
(iii) School books communicate the wealth of our heritage.
(iv) She cannot be rediscovered as she’s bronze.

(d) ‘Great Art’ has power because :

(i) it appeals to us despite a passage of time.
(ii) it is small and can be understood.
(iii) it’s seen in pictures and sketches.
(iv) it’s magnified a million times.

(e) The jewellery she wears :

(i) consists of bangles of shell, ivory or thin metal.
(ii) is a necklace with two pendants.
(iii) both (i) and (ii) are correct.
(iv) neither (i) nor (ii) is correct.

(f) She reminds us

(i) of the never say-die attitude of humans.
(ii) why museums in our country are exciting.
(iii) why she will make us come into money.
(iv) of dancing figures.

(g) The synonym of the word "among" in para 1 is ______.

(h) The size of the dancing girl is equal to the length of human palm. (True/False)

2. Read the following passage carefully.

(1) As the family finally sets off from home after many arguments there is a moment of lull as the car takes off. “Alright, so where are we going for dinner now?” asks the one at the driving wheel. What follows is a chaos as multiple voices make as many suggestions.

(2) By the time order is restored and a decision is arrived at, tempers have risen, feelings injured and there is at least one person grumbling.

(3) Twenty years ago, you would step out of home, decision of meal and venue already made with no arguments or opposition and everybody looked forward to the meal with equal enthusiasm. The decision was made by the head of the family and the others fell in line. Today every member of the family has a say in every decision which also promotes a sense of togetherness and bonding.

(4) We empower our kids to take their own decisions from a very early age. We ask them the cuisine they prefer, the movie they want to see, the holiday they wish to go on and the subjects they wish to study.

(5) It’s a closely connected world out there where children consult and guide each other. A parent’s well meaning advice can sound like nothing more than unnecessary preaching. How then do we reach our children through all the conflicting views and make the voice of reason be heard ? Children today question choices and prefer to go with the flow.

(6) What then is the best path to take? I would say the most important thing one can do is to listen. Listen to your children and their silences. Ensure that you keep some time aside for them, insist that they share their stories with you. Step into their world. It is not as complicated as it sounds; just a daily half an hour of the quality time would do the trick.

2.1 On the basis of your reading of the above passage, answer the following questions in 30-40 words each. 2 × 4 = 8

(a) Write one advantage and one disadvantage of allowing every family member to be part of the decision making process.

(b) In today’s world, what are parents asking their kids ?

(c) Which two pieces of advice does the writer give to the parents ?

(d) The passage supports the parents. How far do you agree with the author’s views ? Support your view with a reason.

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

(a) The synonym of ‘hurt’ as given in paragraph 2 is ____.

(b) The word which means the same as ‘a style or method of cooking’ in paragraph 4 is :
(i) Cuisine (ii) Gourmet
(iii) Gastric (iv) Science

(c) The antonym of ‘agreeable’ as given in paragraph 5 is _____.

(d) The antonym of ‘simple’ as given in paragraph 6 is

(i) difficult (ii) complicated
(iii) easy (iv) tricky

Section - B (Writing and Grammar)

3. You are Vipul/Apoorva, living at D-424, Island Avenue, Ernakulam. You have seen an advertisement about a diploma course in French language soon to be organized by Maxwell Institute of Languages, Fort Road, Kochi. Write a letter in 100-150 words to the advertiser seeking all the relevant information like admission procedure, fee structure, duration of the course, timing of the class, transport facilities etc.


You are disturbed to find that most of the youngsters nowadays are falling prey to the fast food culture, overeating and lazy life style. Write an article on the topic, ‘Importance of exercise and nutritious food’. You are Raj/Rani. (100-150 words)

4. Write a story in 150-200 words with the help of the following clues. Last year in the month of December, I went to my native village where my grand parents live in a cottage on the foothills of the Himalayas. One day, I was standing on the edge of a dense forest. Suddenly ................ .


It was an amazing day, full of fun and frolic. We all stood aghast to see a strange flying object over our heads. We started ........... .

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

Reading books (a) a good hobby. Books open (b) vast new world to us. They increase (c) knowledge and change our outlook (d) the world.

  1. (i) has (ii) was (iii) are (iv) is
  2. (i) the (ii) a (iii) an (iv) some
  3. (i) his (ii) one’s (iii) our (iv) your
  4. (i) towards (ii) for (iii) by (iv) from

6. The following paragraph has not been edited. There is an error in each line. Write the error along with its correction in the space provided. 1 × 4 = 4

Error Correction

Spending time for their kids brings (a) ________ _______
immediate as well as long-last (b) ________ _______
gain for a parents. According to a (c) ________ _______
research, children with concerned (d) ________ _______
parents are more efficient.

7. Rearrange the following words/phrases to make meaningful sentences. 1 × 4 = 4

  1. is / as / known / Jaipur / Pink City.

  2. in the / are / buildings / city / in pink colour / painted / most of the

  3. have made / a popular / it / its / historical buildings / destination / tourist.

  4. go there / one / bus / from Delhi / can easily / by

Section - C (Literature)

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

Max bit his lip nervously. The knocking was repeated.
“What will you do now, Max ?” Ausable asked. “If I do not answer the door, they will enter anyway. The door is unlocked. And they will not hesitate to shoot”.

(a) Who is Max ?
(i) a spy (ii) a tourist
(iii) a businessman (iv) a waiter

(b) Max became nervous because :
(i) he got scared of Ausable.
(ii) he thought the police had come.
(iii) the door was unlocked.
(iv) Ausable did not get up to open the door.

(c) Actually the door was knocked at by the ______.

(d) Which word in the extract is opposite in meaning to the word ‘confidently’ ?


..........Winds rush to meet them.
The moon is broken like a mirror,
Its pieces flash now in the crown
of the tallest oak.

(a) The above lines were written by
(i) Robert Frost (ii) John Berryman
(iii) Robin Klein (iv) Adrienne Rich

(b) The crown of the oak lies in its
(i) top most branch (ii) roots
(iii) rich and tasty fruit (iv) broad leaves

(c) The winds are rushing to meet the ______.

(d) Find the word from the extract which means the same as “shine.”

9. Answer any five of the following questions in 30-40 words each. 2 × 5 = 10

  1. What were Lencho’s feelings when the hail stopped ?

  2. Why did Peggy and Maddie not wait for Wanda ?

  3. Why does the poet use the term ‘noble’ and ‘wild’ for the tiger ? (How to Tell Wild Animals)

  4. What was the major flaw in Tricki ?

  5. What made the boys follow Griffin ?

  6. How is Ausable different from other secret agents ?

10. Attempt the following question in 100-150 words.

What lesson did Kisa Gotami learn the second time that she had failed to learn the first time ?


Which qualities of animals has the poet lost and now wants to regain ? Answer with reference to the poem, ‘Animals’.

11. Attempt the following question in 100-150 words.

Write a character sketch of the hack driver.


What do you know about Bishamber Nath ? Why did Bholi refuse to marry him ?

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