# Some more questions from 'The Jungle Book'

Hi,

1. Does ‘and few in the jungle care for those odds’ mean: and few in the jungle are willing to accept such bad a disadvantage.

2. Could I suggest ‘Would that Baloo were here’ = if Baloo were here? If so, why and how could it be?

1. Does ‘Down hoods all!’ mean: put all your hoods down!?

2. Does ‘… plunged under the heaps of his enemies’ mean: … threw himself earnestly (into the fighting) under many layers of the monkeys?

1. Is ‘nearest’ a ‘superlative preposition’? How could it be so?

2. Does ‘only to disappear to the head in a wave of monkeys’ mean: only to become covered (with monkeys) all over but his head in a wave-formed crowds of the monkeys?

3. Does ‘the monkeys stood three deep on the red steps’ mean: the monkeys stood three circles deep on the red steps (of the water tank)?

Many thaks again.

Haihao

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1. Does ‘and few in the jungle care for those odds’ mean: and few in the jungle are willing to accept such a bad disadvantage. – Yes.

2. Could I suggest ‘Would that Baloo were here’ = if Baloo were here? – Yes.
If so, why and how could it be? – Maybe I don’t understand this question, Haihao. ‘Would that…were’ is a reasonably common formulaic subjunctive.

3. Does ‘Down hoods all!’ mean: put all your hoods down!? – Not exactly; ‘All of you, put down your hoods!’. I presume you know that a cobra has a hood which it spreads when it is alarmed or angry.

4. Does ‘… plunged under the heaps of his enemies’ mean: … threw himself earnestly (into the fighting) under many layers of the monkeys? – Yes.

5. Is ‘nearest’ a ‘superlative preposition’? How could it be so? - Yes; why not?The ruined wall [which was the] nearest [to] the jungle.

6. Does ‘only to disappear to the head in a wave of monkeys’ mean: only to become covered (with monkeys) all over but his head in a wave-formed crowds of the monkeys? – …All over but his head in a flowing wave of monkeys.

7. Does ‘the monkeys stood three deep on the red steps’ mean: the monkeys stood three circles deep on the red steps (of the water tank)? – Yes.
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Hi Mr. Micawber,

Many many thanks again and again I have got everything I wanted with both of my hands full!

I am sorry, Mr Micawber, this was simply my lack of confidence in determining ‘Would that…were’ = ‘if … were’

In fact I only knew that a cobra had a hood but didn’t know it spread when it was alarmed or angry.

I took it too rigidly thinking ‘near’ could be only a preposition here for ‘near the jungle’. Now I understand it could act as well as an adjective.

Thanks again.

Haihao