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The crowd surged forward through the narrow streets of Paris. There was a clatter of shutters being closed hastily by trembling hands—the citizens of Paris knew that once the fury of the people was excited there was no telling what they might do. They came to an old house which had a workshop on the ground floor. A head popped out of the door to see what it was all about. ‘Get him! Get Thimonier! Smash his devilish machines!’, yelled the crowd.
They found the workshop without its owner. M.Thimonier had escaped by the back door. Now the fury of the demonstrators turned against the machines that were standing in the shop, ready to be delivered to buyers. They were systematically broken up and destroyed -dozens of them. Only when the last wheel and spindle had been trampled underfoot did the infuriated crowd recover their senses.
‘That is the end of M’ seer Thimonier and his sewing machines’, they said to one another and went home satisfied. Perhaps now they would find work, for they were all unemployed tailors and seamstresses who believed that their livelihood was threatened by that new invention.
1. The passage throws light on
(a) why inventions should be avoided altogether.
(b) how a well-meant invention can be misunderstood.
(c) what mischief an inventor can do to ordinary people.
(d) how dangerous an invention can prove to be.
2. The crowd was protesting against
(a) the closing of workshops
(b) the misdoings of Thimonier
(c) the newly invented sewing machine
(d) Thimonier keeping the invention a secret
3. The aim of the crowd was to
(a) kill Thimonier
(b) drive Thimonier away
(c) bring discredit to Thimonier
(d) destroy the sewing machines
4. The people thought that
(a) their lives were in danger.
(b) Thimonier was mad.
(c) the sewing machine was dangerous.
(d) Thimonier was depriving them of their livelihood.
5. Shutters were being closed hastily because of the shopkeepers
(a) wanted to attack the crowd
(b) wanted to protect Thimonier
(c) feared their shops would be invaded
(d) wanted to show their solidarity with the crowd