Summary of ‘The Address’ with important Question/Answers, Class XI Literature

The Address

 

This chapter centers around a daughter who goes in search of her mother’s belongings after the war, in Holland. She finds all the objects which evoke memories of her earlier life. However, she decides to leave them all behind and resolves to move on.

The chapter begins when Mrs. S’s daughter visits Mrs. Dorling’s house after the liberation war in Holland. She remembers the address, therefore reaches there and meets a woman (Mrs. Dorling) whom she knows very well.

To her surprise, Mrs. Dorling who was a frequent visitor to their home before the war, refuses to recognise her. The narrator introduces herself again and again but all in vain. Mrs. Dorling is wearing a green knotted cardigan which once used to be owned by Mrs. S, her mother. Narrator wants to talk to Mrs. Dorling but latter turns a blind eye and shuts the door on her face.

Narrator once again confirms the address by looking at the name-plate again which suggests Mrs. Dorling in black letters on white enamel and a house number i.e 46.

Having been dejected by Mrs. Dorling, the narrator walks slowly to the station. While walking down, she recalls the moments spent with her mother and the time when things had started disappearing from her room as well as home. When enquired, her mother told the narrator about Mrs. Dorling who was an old acquaintance my mother, whom she had not seem for years. But, suddenly she had turned up and renewed her contact with her mother.

Narrator’s mother also adds that every time she leaves there, she takes something home with her. According to her mother, Mrs. Dorling had taken everything starting from antique plates to the crockery used at their home. In short, she would insist to give all those things in order to save them from the war. Accoding to her mother, she would carry a full suitcase or a bag stuffed with house hold things. Her mother wanted the narrator to remember the ‘Number 46, Marconi Street’ i.e address of Mrs. Dorling.

Narrator, once again, decides to go to Mrs. Dorling home. This time, a girl of about fifteen opens the door. Narrator enquires if her mother was at home. She denies saying that she has been to market to run an errand.

Narrator enters her house and sees an old-fashioned Hanukkah candle holder, wooden table cloth, tea-pot, spoons and many other things which once belonged to her mother. She even feels the burn mark which is still there on the table cloth.

But soon she realises that she has to catch her train. She leaves the house and decides never to come back again and to forget the address of Mrs. Dorling’s home.

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