“The Jungle Book” is a book of storied linked by their themes and written by the English author and Nobel Prize winner Rudyar Kipling. They were published in magazines between 1893 and 1894. In the magazine editions the stories contained original illustrations, some of which were made by the author’s father.
Even though the stories were written while Kipling lived in Vermont, his inspiration emerged for his childhood spent in India. It is assumed that the stories were written for his daughter who passed away when she was six, shortly after the first book came out.
The book has two parts, 14 chapters which are actually 14 stories. Every part contains 7 stories. In the first part we have the chapters: “Mowgli’s Brothers”, “Kaa’s hunting”, “Road Song of the Bandar-Log”, “Tiger! Tiger!”, “Mowgli’s Song”, “The White Seal” and in the second are chapters: “Lukannon”, “Rikki-Tikki-Tavi”, “Darzee’s Chaunt”, “Toomai of the Elephants”, “Shiv and the Grashopper”, “Her Majesty’s Servants” and “Parade-Song of the Camp Animals”.
In this story “Toomai of the Eletphants” we follow up with the adventure of the elephant Kala Nag and a boy named Toomai. Kala Nag was a special elephant who served for the Indian government. He did different assignments but in the end he worked on taming the other elephants because he was very good at it. Toomai knew Kal Nag since he was a kid and the two of them lived through many adventures on the mountain Garo.
Genre: book of stories
Theme: the adventures of the elephant Kala Nag and a little boy Toomai
Moral of the story: our dreams will come true only if we believe in them
Elephant Kal Naga served to the Indian government for more than 47 years. He was 70 and he was caught when he was only 17. Even when he was little he pushed the cannons that were stuck in mud.
His mother Rada always taught him that those who fear get hurt. Kala Nag believed it when a grenade exploded near him and he got so scared that he hit guns that were near him and got stabbed by bayonets. Since that he never feared anything again in his life. That had happened before he turned 25 and because of that he became the Indian government’s favorite elephant.
His job was to hunt elephants on the mountain Garo with other trained elephants. After they were caught they were tamed and sent to places where they were needed.
Kala Nag was 3 meters tall and his teeth, even though they were shortened, were still sharp.
Kala Nag would hunt the elephants for weeks and then they would close the captured elephants in a enclosed area. He even got orders to enter the area and beat up the wildest elephants.
When it came to combat there wasn’t a thing he didn’t know. He would lift up his trunk in the air and run towards his enemy. He wasn’t afraid of anything or anyone. Kala Nag’s keeper was Big Toomai that was convinced that he was the only one Kala Nag feared. He was the son of Black Toomai and the grandson of Toomai who saw Kala Nag when he was captured. Little Toomai also bragged about Kala Nag being afraid of him. Little Toomai was Big Toomai’s oldest son and the heir of his father. Little Toomai grew up with Kala Nag, played with him and told him stories.
Little Toomai liked camping, climbing, watching elephants and most of all he loved chasing elephants out. One time he went to the area where the wild elephants were and he helped a hunter to tie down a little elephant. Kala Nag grabbed him with his trunk and gave him to Big Toomai who hit him hard a few times and yelled at him. Big Toomai was afraid that the hunters will tell all about it to Sahib.
Little Toomai was scared because Peterson Sahibu was the biggest white man he had ever seen. He knew everything about elephants and he was in charge of hunting them for the Indian government. Little Toomai asked his father what will happen now and his father was scared that he will be sent off to hunt elephants too and he didn’t want any of his family members to become a hunter. Big Toomai wanted to earn his money by keeping KalaNag safe.
Big Toomai couldn’t find peace and he was very angry with his son. He sent him to check up on Kala Nag and see if they need to wash him.
Little Toomai was very sad and he told everything to Kala Nag. He was still hoping to work as an elephant hunter.
The hunting season was coming to an end and Peterson came to give the hunters their paycheck. While they were paying Big Toomai they saw Little Toomai and when the main hunter saw him he told Petersen all about him and his recent accomplishment Peterson asked him to come closer and then Kala Nag took him with his trunk and placed him in front of Peterson who was still sitting on his elephant.
Mister Peterson liked the elephants little trick and he asked Toomai why he taught him how to do it adding that the reason will probably be to help him steal corn. Little Toomai was honest, like all children, and he said he taught him the trick to help him steal watermelons. Everyone laughed from the heart.
Then Big Toomai presented him as his son. He was still angry and didn’t want his son to become a hunter. Peterson talked to Little Toomai and he thought he was a strong and brave little kid because he dared to enter the area with wild elephants. He gave him some money and advised him not to enter that area again because it wasn’t for children. Little Toomai asked him if that meant that he will never be able to enter the area and Peterson told him he will be allowed to enter when he sees elephants dancing. Everyone laughed to it because for hunters it meant never. There is legend that states there is a place where elephants dance but no one has seen it so the hunters made a joke about it.
Kala Nag gave Little Toomai back to his father and both of them sat on Kala Nag and went to the camp. Some of the hunters were also headed back for the camp and they constantly had problems with Big Toomai. Big Toomai had a high opinion about himself and couldn’t even think aobut his son becoming a hunter and on the other side his son was thrilled just because he had a chance to talk to Peterson.
When they came to the camp they tied down the elephants. After Little Toomai fed Kala Nag he went to find a pair of drums which helped him to express his happiness. He heard his mother putting his baby brother to bed and he fell asleep on the hay next to Kala Nag.
The elephants were going to sleep and only Kala Nag was awake. When Little Toomai woke up the moon was out. He heard an elephant and then all the elephants woke up. A new elephants tried to free himself. Big Toomai went to tie him down and told his son to go back to bed.
Kala Nag freed himself and went for a walk. Little Toomai saw him leaving and asked if he could make him company. Kala Nag took him with his trunk and put him up on his back. They went uphill, crossed a river and found a lot of wild elephants. Little Toomai couldn’t believe his eyes.
He heard voices and soon a cloud covered the moon and it was so dark that he couldn’t see anything. Kala Nag lifted one leg up then the other one and all the other elephants started doing the same. There was a lot of noise and when Toomai came to his senses everything was gone.
The sun was coming up and Toomai told Kala Nag that they should go back to the camp. They were accompanied by another elephant named Pudmina.
Two hours later they were back in the camp. Kala Nag’s legs hurt and Pudmina was very filthy. Peterson was eating his breakfast when Toomai approached him, told him he saw the elephants dancing and then passed out.
When he gained conscious he was taken care off. He was in Peterson’s net with his coat as a pillow. The hunters were around him waiting to hear the story of the elephants dancing. He told him that they only need to believe and that Kala Nag’s tiredness is the proof. After that he fell asleep again and didn’t wake up until sundown.
While he was sleeping Peterson was with Makua Apa looking for the place the boy talked about. Soon they saw some proof of Toomai telling the truth. They were astonished.
Makua Apa, who was Peterson’s right hand, decided to show his respect for Little Toomai so he placed him above his head and proclaimed him to be Toomai of the Elephants as his great-grandfather was. He called everyone to pay their respects to Toomai and even the elephants did it.
Characters: Kala Nag, Big Toomai, Little Toomai, Peterson Sahib, Makua Apa, hunters, elephants
Kala Nag is a fearless Indian elephant who spent years serving the Indian government and he was the best at it. He helped hunting and taming the wild elephants. He was brave and loyal to his keeper Big Toomai. His mother taught him that the elephants who fear get hurt so he feared nothing. Kala Nag grew up with Little Toomai, he loved him a lot and the two of them were friends. He was the government’s favorite elephant and they took care of him. He helped them carry tents and wood but in the end his only assignment was taming the elephants. His dream came true in the end and he was the only one who saw elephants dancing.
Rudyard Kipling Biography
Rudyard Kipling is an English writer born in 1865 in Bombay. His father was a professor in an art school. Even though he spent his early childhood in India he went to school in England. When he finished he studies he went back to India and worked as a journalist.
Rudyard led an exciting life filled with journeys and interesting situations. In 1894, he published his most popular work “The Jungle Book” which got its sequence as “The Jungle Book 2”.
From 1902, and in his life was connected to England where he played an important role in the political and cultural life of his time. In 1907, he got a Nobel prize.
He was a supporter of order and discipline and he carried it as life lessons into his work. He considered that the law about British colonization was good and despite his literate work he was judged for being a supporter of the British imperialism.