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Reading practice online

Reading practice online  Two simple ways to improve your English reading ability along with knowing meaning of vocabulary that really work for both beginners and advanced level students.

One of the best ways to enhance your reading is to go through a different English stories which are available here on this website.

English Reading Practice Online

Reading (kind of short stories) is something that can give you a lot of things to enhance your reading skills and enriching word stock. The good is that not only we will get to know daily Use phrases and words but we will also focus on our reading skills today.

Here are Reading practice online passages

There have been given some stories for reading practice online.

Passage No. 1

There is increasing derangement (अराजकता) and chaos (अफरा तफरी) all around the country. Incidents (घटनाएं) of theft (चोरी), murder (हत्या), robbery,(लूट) rape and kidnapping are increasing (बढ़ रही).

The leaders of the country are straightening their owls (अपना (उल्लू सीधा कर ना). Every political party in power (सत्ता में) is doing vote politics. Society is being divided on the basis of (आधार पर) caste and religion. The public is not paying attention.

Unemployment (बेरोजगारी) and bribery (रिश्वतखोरी) are on the rise. Corruption (भ्रष्टाचार) is increasing. Foreign companies are exploiting (शोषण करना) people in the same way as (जैसा) East India Company was doing. Power is being criminalised (अपराधीकरण). Criminals and corrupt people are roaming (घूमना) in the car.

Intellectuals (बुद्धिजीवी) are riding motorcycles. The swan (हंस) is eating the grain (दाना चुगना), the crow (कौआ) is eating the pearl (मोती).

Foreign TV channels are polluting (दूषित करना) Indian culture (सभ्यता). The car (गाड़ी) is going towards (कि ओर) the crematorium (श्मशान), on which it is written – ‘We are moving towards a bright future (सूनहले भविष्य)’. This is liberalisation (उदारीकरण), this is globalisation (भूमंडलीकरण).

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Passage No. 2

Man becomes everything but man does not. Children are sincere at heart. There is a part of God in them. They have simple (सरलता) innocence (भोलापन) and purity (शुद्धता) . But we elders sow (बोना) the seed (बीज) of evil (बुराई) in their ears.

Teach them the discrimination (भेदभाव) of caste and religion, tell them the difference between being born in a high and low caste. We encourage (उत्साह बढ़ाना) them to earn more money and not be a better person.

As a result (परिणामस्वरूप), anger, greed, jealousy (ईष्रय) , arrogance (अहंकार), etc., like a slow poison in children, begin to enter the house. The child becomes everything, does not become a good, does not become a good person.

Passage No. 3

India is an agricultural (खेती) country. But now there is no income in comparison to (की तुलना में) the expenditure (खर्चा) in farming. This is the reason why the condition of the farmers is very pathetic (दायनीय). Even some farmers get frustrated (निराश) and commit suicide.

People run to cities in search of (की खोज में) jobs. There is money in the cities but where is the peace? What is the meaning of life without peace (शांति) ? This is the irony of fate (भाग्य की विडम्बना) .

Where there is peace, there is no money, where there is money, there is no peace. So contentment (संतोष) is the only way.

Passage No. 4

Long ago (बहुत पहले) there was a farmer in a village. He had four sons. All four used to fight amongst themselves (आपस में). The farmer was very worried (चिंतित) .

He thought of a solution. He asked the boys to bring some sticks. The farmer gave a stick to each (हर एक को) son and asked them to break it. They broke it easily. Now the farmer tied (बांधा) the sticks in the form (रुप) of a bundle. He asked them to break the bundle.

They could not do so because the sticks were united (इकट्ठा) . The farmer said- “Look, there is strength in unity (एकता में बल).”

Passage No. 5

A saint (संत) used to do penance (तपस्या) in a forest. He worshiped God and lived a peaceful life. Once a king came to him. He wanted to see the doors of heaven (स्वर्ग) and hell (नर्क).

The saint refused (इनकार) the king. The king got angry. He drew the sword and attacked the saint. The saint held his hand and said- “O king. You are standing at the door of hell. Anger leads (ले जाना) to the door of hell.” The king was ashamed (शर्मिंदा) .

He fell (गिर पड़ा) at the feet of the saint and apologized (माफ़ मांगी). The saint said- “Your Majesty! You are standing at the door of heaven. Kindness (दयालूपन) takes you to the door of heaven.” The king was satisfied. He was always a benevolent (उदार) and virtuous (सदाचारी) king.

Passage No.6

It was a cold winter night. Saint (संत) Socrates was preaching (उपदेश देना) to his disciples (शिष्य) . His wife warned (चेतावनी दी) him to end the discourse (प्रवचन) . Socrates did not do this.

His wife freaked out (आपे से बाहर). She poured (उड़ेल दी) a bucket full of water over him. Socrates laughed! His disciples were surprised. Socrates said- “I am a saint. I do not get angry. I do not lose patience (धैर्य) .

My wife tested me. I passed. She is my teacher.” Socrates’ wife became watery (पानी पानी) in shame (शर्म से). She fell at his feet and started apologizing (क्षमा मांगी) to him. Since then she has remained (बनी रही) a good wife and a kind lady.

Passage No.7

Once an old lady went to Buddha. He said, “Lord, this is my son. It eats jaggery (गुड़). You explain it so that it stops eating jaggery.” Buddha said – “Come tomorrow.” The old woman again approached (पास गया) him.

Buddha told his son- son, stop eating jaggery. It is injurious (हानिकारक) to health.” The old lady said – “Lord, you could have said this even yesterday.” Buddha said – “Till yesterday, I myself used to eat jaggery, then how could I refuse it?” True, someone To stop walking on the bad path (राह), we have to give up the bad path ourselves.

Passage No. 8

Human life is a combination (मेल) of laughter (हंसी) and tears, happiness and sorrow (दुःख), success and failure. If we struggle (संघर्ष) in life then we get the destination (मंजिल).

But success does not always come easily. Sometimes failures are met before success. But they are a source of inspiration (प्रेरणा) for the courageous (हिम्मतवाला) man.

He gets fresh energy for dedication (समर्पण) and determination (निशचय). This spirit (भावना) of dedication and determination has led (ले गया) man to the space age.

Failure is a natural (स्वाभाविक) phenomenon (घटना) . It just comes. But it acts as a pillar (स्तंभ) of success.

Passage No. 9

The Hen That Laid Golden Eggs

A poultry farmer found a stray hen and took it home. Lo and behold! The next day the hen had laid a golden egg! The farmer and his wife couldn’t believe their luck. The farmer soon became very rich because the hen laid a golden egg every day.

The foolish farmer then became greedy. One day, he thought, “If I kill this hen, I can take out all the golden eggs from its stomach together.

Then I can sell all the eggs and become rich, even faster!” In the hope of finding lots of golden eggs within, he killed the hen. But of course he found no eggs.

He was very upset and cried over his foolishness. Out of greed, he had robbed himself of even what he had. He had learnt his lesson but it was too late.

Passage No.10

Chico and the Crane

There was a cook named Chico. His master had visitors for dinner and Chico was told to fry a crane. Chico felt hungry and so he ate one leg of the crane.

At dinnertime, when the master saw a missing leg, he shouted, “Chico! Why does this crane have only one leg?” Chico replied, “Sir, haven’t you seen cranes before? They only have one leg!” To teach Chico a lesson, next morning, his master took him to the pond nearby. Chico exclaimed, “Look, Master! Cranes have only one leg!”

The master clapped his hands and all the cranes uncurled their other legs and flew away. “You fool! Did you see they have two legs!” cried the master.

Clever Chico replied, “Sir, why didn’t you clap your hands at the table? You would have got two legs!”

Passage No.11

How Poor We Are?

One day, a rich dad took his son on a trip. Wanted to show him how poor someone can be. They spent time on the farm of a poor family. On the way home, dad asked, “Did you see how poor they are? What did you learn?”.

Son said, “We have one dog, they have four, we have pool, they have rivers, we have lanterns at night, they have stars, we buy foods,

they grow theirs, we have walls to protect us, they have friends, we have encyclopedias, they have Bible.” Then they headed,”Thanks dad for showing me how poor we are.”


It’s not about money that make us rich, it’s about simplicity of having God in our lives.

Passage No.12

The Thirsty Crow

One day a crow was feeling very thirsty. On a hot summer day, she flew here and there in search of water but in vain.

She continued to search hard but couldn’t find any water to quench her thirst. Then after a long time, she found a pitcher, with a little water in it.

The neck of the pitcher was too long and the water level too low. The crow could not reach the water with her beak. She saw many pebbles around. Suddenly, the crow had an idea.

She picked thepebbles one by one and dropped them in the pitcher. And lo! The level of water slowly rose to the top. The crow drank it thirstily. She was very happy.

This story proves that if you try hard enough you can overcome any problem.


13. The Proud Frog

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A large frog who was very vain believed that he was the most handsome frog and wanted to grow even bigger.

He often admired his reflection in a pond and swelling with pride would boast to his friends, “Look how big I am!”

One day, an ox was passing by the pond. The proud frog looked at the ox and asked his friends, ‘Am I as big as the ox?” His friends, who were tired of hearing the proud frog boast about himself every day said that he wasn’t as big as the ox.

The proud frog was furious and wanted to prove his friends wrong. He puffed himself up to become bigger and bigger to show his friends that he could be as big as the ox.

He huffed and he puffed and all of a sudden, he burst and that was the end of the vain frog!

14. The King’s Curse

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A king had six sons but no daughter. He and his queen longed for a baby girl. When the queen was about to give birth to another child, the king declared that if this were a son too then all the children would be cursed.

Soon he had to leave for war. While leaving, he told the queen that she should hang a lance on the window if a son was born, and a distaff if a daughter was born.

A girl was born but in the confusion and merrymaking, a lance was hung instead of a distaff.

Seeing it on his return, the king cursed his sons. As a result they had to wander in the world unknown.

When the girl grew up she left to search for her brothers.

She met an old man who told her that she would be able to find her brothers if she did not speak for seven years. Searching, she arrived at a king’s palace. The king was struck by her beauty and married her. But she never spoke a word.

The king’s mother was unhappy with this marriage. When the queen was about to give birth to a child, she cunningly sent the king to war and imprisoned the queen inside a wall and sent a message to the king that his queen was dead.

But a servant rescued the queen and the child and took them to his house. He looked after them.

Seven years passed and the king returned. The queen could speak again and told the king the truth. The king rewarded the servant and helped the queen unite with her brothers. The brothers and sister went to meet their parents and lived happily ever after.

15. The Troublesome Fly

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Once upon a time there lived a bald farmer. One day, he was sitting in the verandah. A packet of sweets lay nearby.

Some flies hovered over them. One of them left the tray and started buzzing around the farmer’s head. The farmer bore it for a while.

But the fly kept on irritating him and buzzing around his head.

The farmer finally grew impatient and struck his head with both hands. But the fly was quicker. It would escape each time the farmer tried to strike it.

Finally the farmer realised he was only bruising his own head. He gave up trying to hit the fly.

He had learnt his lesson. We sometimes hurt ourselves by getting bothered about little things. It is better to ignore them.

16. The Clever Parrot

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Once, there lived a merchant who had a beautiful daughter. Both the king and the viceroy loved her.

One day, the merchant decided to go away for a few days on business.

When the viceroy heard that the merchant was leaving on business, he asked a witch to turn him into a parrot. Before leaving, the merchant bought the parrot for his daughter.

The viceroy knew that the king would woo the merchant’s daughter as soon as the merchant left.

In the form of the parrot he said to the girl, “I will tell you a story but while I’m telling it to you, you will not meet anyone.” When the servant came to inform her there was a letter from the king, she refused to receive it in her father’s absence.

When the merchant returned, the parrot disappeared. The viceroy asked the merchant for his daughter’s hand and he agreed.

The king died of a broken heart. The viceroy had been cleverer than him.

17. The Peasant in Heaven

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A poor peasant arrived at the gates of heaven after his death. There, a very rich man was also standing, waiting to get into heaven, at the same time.

Saint Peter came with the key to heaven. He took the rich man inside but forgot to take the poor man. The poor man heard music and rejoicing inside for the rich man. The rich man was given lavish food and new clothes.

The poor man expected to get the same welcome when it was his turn but neither was he given the same food nor new clothes. The angels took him in lovingly but no one sang for him. Seeing this, he asked Saint Peter why there was partiality in heaven.

Saint Peter replied that he was equally dear and would enjoy every heavenly delight like the others. But poor people like him came to heaven every day whereas rich men came rarely.

18. The Nightingale

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There lived an emperor in China, who had a very beautiful kingdom. Everyone admired his palace and gardens but when they heard the nightingale sing, they declared that it was the best of all.

When the emperor heard about the nightingale, he sent his men to bring it for him. When he heard it sing, tears came to his eyes. He kept the bird in his palace in a cage.

One day, the king of Japan sent a beautiful artificial nightingale. This nightingale was covered with precious gems and sang wonderfully too.

But it could sing only one song. Everyone forgot the real nightingale, and sadly it flew away. Then, one day, the artificial bird broke its spring and could not sing any longer.

Years passed. The emperor fell ill and was near death. No doctor could cure him. The real nightingale heard this and came to sing for him.

Hearing it, the emperor recovered. The bird promised that it would always come and sing for him.

19. The Goat and the Fox

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Once a fox fell into a well. He saw a goat passing by and called out to her. He tricked her by saying that he was in the well because the water tasted good.

The goat believed the fox and she too jumped into the well. The clever fox promised to help her come out.

He climbed on the goat and got out of the well and ran away. The poor goat was left in the water and realised her mistake.

20.The Two Daughters

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Once a man had two daughters. The first one was married to a farmer and the second one married a potter.

One day, the father visited the first daughter and asked her if everything was well with her.

The daughter nodded and replied, “We grow a lot of grains and vegetables in our field. Every night I pray to God that it rains so that our crops can have enough water. She said,”Father, please pray for rains.”


Then the father went to the second daughter and asked her if everything was fine. The second daughter happily answered, “We make pots with clay and then keep them for drying in the sun.

Every night I pray to God that it does not rain because if it rains our pots would be spoilt. Father, please pray that it does not rain.”


The old man didn’t know what to pray for.

21. The Eagle and the Woodcutter

Once upon a time there was a kind woodcutter. One day, when he was returning from the forest after a hard day’s work, he saw a beautiful eagle caught in a trap.


The woodcutter was so overwhelmed by its majestic beauty that he set the eagle free. The eagle flapped its wings happily, looked at the woodcutter in gratitude, and flew away.


A few months later, the woodcutter was sitting on a rock at the top of a steep hill. When he sat down to have his lunch, suddenly an eagle came down at great speed from the sky and flew away with his hat.

The man got up at once and ran down the hill after the bird, hoping to get back his hat.

Suddenly, he heard a loud crash behind him. The rock on which he was sitting went rolling down the hill and crashed with a thunderous sound.


Then he looked at the eagle. It was the same eagle and had saved the woodcutter’s life.


22. A room under the ground

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Joe was the son of a farmer. His father’s farm was poor, and Joe worked on it for a long time, but then his father died, and Joe said, “I needn’t stay here now. I’ll sell this farm and buy one in a better place.

Then I’ll soon be rich.”
He bought a farm in the east of the country, but then new neighbours said to him, “The weather’s often very bad here. The wind’s very strong, and it breaks windows and doors.

You must build a room under the ground, and then you and your family can go down there, and you’ll be safe from the wind.”
So Joe built a room under the ground. It was a lot of work, because the ground was hard.
But after that, the weather was good for a very long time. There was no wind, and Joe spoke angrily. He said, “Why did I listen to my neighbours? I didn’t have to make that room under the ground.

The wind never blows strongly here.”
But then one day there was a very strong wind, and Joe and his family had to go down into their room under the ground.

They were there for a long time. Then the wind stopped, and they came up. All the windows and doors in their house were broken.

Joe was not angry about his work now. He smiled happily and said, “Ah! I’m glad I built that room!”

23. The Wise Son

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Once there was a wise King. He had two sons. He appointed aminent scholars to teach them all arts. After a few years, The King fell ill badly. So he wanted to select the next king for his kingdom. He wanted to test his sons’ abilities.


He called both of them and gave them a room to each one. He said, “You must fill your room completely with anything you wish. It can be anything! But there should not be any space left behind and you should not seek advice from other!”


The next day, the king visited the elder son’s room. The room was completely filed with hay. The king sighed on the foolishness of the elder son.


The he went to the room given to the younger son. But it was kept closed. The King knocked at the door. The younger son asked his father to get in and closed the door again. There was darkness everywhere and the king shouted at his son angrily.


But the younger son lighted a candle and said, “I have filled this room with light!” Now the king felt very happy and hugged his son proudly. He understood that the younger son would be the right person to rule the kingdom.

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