Animal Farm

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Beasts of England was sung  a number  of times, then the sheep who had  been killed was given a  solemn

funeral, a hawthorn bush being planted on her  grave. At the  graveside Snowball made a little speech,

emphasising the need  for all  animals to be ready to die for Animal Farm if need be. 

The  animals decided unanimously to create a  military  decoration,  "Animal Hero, First Class," which was

conferred there and  then on  Snowball  and  Boxer.  It  consisted  of  a brass medal  (they  were  really  some old

horse−brasses which had  been  found  in  the  harness−room), to  be  worn on  Sundays  and holidays. There was

also  "Animal Hero, Second Class," which was  conferred posthumously on the  dead sheep. 

There was much discussion as  to  what the battle should be called.  In the end, it was named the Battle of the

Cowshed, since that was  where the  ambush had been sprung. Mr. Jones's gun had been found lying  in the

mud, and  it was known that there was a supply of cartridges in  the  farmhouse. It was  decided to  set the gun

up at the  foot of  the  Flagstaff,  like  a piece of  artillery,  and to fire  it  twice a  year−once on  October  the twelfth,

the  anniversary of the Battle of  the  Cowshed,  and  once on Midsummer  Day, the  anniversary of the  Rebellion. 




 drew on, Mollie  became  more and  more troublesome. She was late for work  every morning and

excused  herself by saying that  she had  overslept,  and she  complained of  mysterious  pains, although her

appetite  was  excellent. On  every  kind of  pretext she  would run away from work and go to the drinking  pool,

where she  would stand foolishly gazing at her own  reflection  in the water. But there  were  also  rumours  of

something  more  serious. One day, as Mollie strolled  blithely into  the  yard,  flirting her long tail and  chewing

at a stalk of  hay, Clover took  her aside. 

"Mollie," she  said, "I  have something very serious to say to you.  This morning I saw you looking over the

hedge that divides Animal  Farm from  Foxwood. One of Mr. Pilkington's men was  standing on  the  other side

of the  hedge. And−I was a long way away, but I  am almost  certain I saw this−he was  talking to you and you

were allowing him to  stroke your nose. What does that  mean, Mollie?" 

"He  didn't! I wasn't!  It isn't true!"  cried Mollie, beginning to  prance about and paw the ground. 

"Mollie! Look me  in the face. Do you give me your word  of  honour  that that man was not stroking your


"It  isn't true!" repeated Mollie, but she could not look Clover in  the face,  and the next moment she took to her

heels  and galloped  away into  the field. 

A thought struck Clover. Without saying anything to the others, she  went to Mollie's stall and turned over the

straw with her hoof. Hidden  under  the straw was a  little pile of lump sugar and several bunches  of  ribbon of

different colours. 

Three  days  later Mollie disappeared. For some  weeks  nothing was  known of her whereabouts,  then the

pigeons reported that they  had  seen her  on the  other side of  Willingdon. She was  between the  shafts  of  a

smart  dogcart painted red and black, which  was  standing outside a public−house. A  fat red−faced man in

check breeches  and gaiters, who looked like a publican,  was stroking her nose and  feeding her with sugar.

Her coat was newly clipped  and  she wore a  scarlet  ribbon round  her forelock.  She  appeared  to  be  enjoying

herself,  so the pigeons  said. None of  the animals ever mentioned  Mollie again. 

 Animal Farm



In  January  there came  bitterly hard weather. The earth was  like  iron, and nothing could be done in  the fields.

Many meetings were  held in  the big barn, and the pigs occupied themselves with planning  out the work of  the

coming  season.  It  had  come to  be  accepted  that the pigs, who were  manifestly  cleverer than  the other animals,

should decide all questions of  farm policy,  though their decisions  had to be ratified by a majority  vote.  This

arrangement would have  worked  well enough if  it had not  been for the  disputes between  Snowball and

Napoleon. These two disagreed at every point  where  disagreement was possible. If  one of  them suggested

sowing a bigger  acreage with barley,  the other was  certain to  demand a bigger  acreage  of  oats, and if one of

them said that such and  such a field  was just right for  cabbages, the  other would declare that  it was  useless for

anything  except  roots. Each had his own following, and  there were  some  violent debates. At  the Meetings

Snowball often won  over the majority by his brilliant speeches,  but Napoleon was better  at canvassing

support for himself in between times.  He was especially  successful with the sheep.  Of late the sheep had

taken to  bleating  "Four legs good, two legs bad" both in and  out of season, and they  often interrupted  the

Meeting  with  this. It  was noticed  that  they were  especially  liable to  break into  "Four legs good, two legs  bad"

at crucial  moments in Snowball's speeches. Snowball had made a  close study of some back  numbers of the

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