The Light on the Hills Lesson Summary Notes and Explanation in English Class 8th


  1. The boy: He had a desire to paint a picture, however, lacked the courage, and confidence and was nervous to paint the picture.
  2. The little sister: She is portrayed as a very mature person with a comprehensive and positive outlook on life.


‘The Light on The Hills’, by Lucy Clifford, tells that, encouragement can bring out the best in man. One day, a boy invited his sister into a field, to see a picture drawn by him. But unfortunately, the picture was not up to the mark.

The girl told his brother that if we want to do our best, we should do it for the people we love. Soon a big tragedy struck the family. The little girl died in her sleep. The boy was very sad. He did not have enough courage to see the same field without her.


The boy and his sister enjoy each other’s company

‘Light on the Hills’ is a short story that shows how the words of a person can influence another person. A boy was painting scenes from nature while his little sister stood beside watching him. She pointed out some of the defects of his painting and remarked that people who saw that painting would be glad and would feel that it was real.

The boy asks her if he painted it badly and would it make the people unhappy. To this, the girl answered that if he was doing his work with dedication and honesty, they would understand how much effort he took to paint it, and would certainly like his picture. The girl pointed out to the boy the light from the hills and both of them enjoyed watching it.

The girl motivates his brother with her words

He tried to paint trees, fields, dark shades, and the faraway hills with the light on them. As the sunlight began to dim, he stopped his painting. The girl said that the world was very beautiful. The boy repeated these words with a pinch of sorrow. The boy asked her when she wanted to do something great, and what would she do.

The girl answered that she would think that she was doing it for the person whom she loved best. This would make her strong and she could forget all her sorrow. Thus, she would be able to go forward and would never get bored. The boy thought for a moment and said that in that case, he would paint his picture for her. Then they both returned home.

A tragedy that affects the boy deeply

A tragedy happened in the family that night when the girl died in her sleep. The sorrowful mother told the boy that his little sister would never come back to this world again. The sorrow of the boy was beyond words. He thought about the words she had spoken before she had got an extraordinary strength. He completed the picture and everyone appreciated it. It was whispering in his ears that it was love, true love, from which all virtues came. If it gave happiness, it could be called heaven.


Therefore, with the help of this chapter we see that words serve as proxies for actions; interactions; emotions; thoughts. As soon as one starts thinking about what words mean, you can’t help but start imagining. Because we have a history of association with these words or a gap in our learning if the word is new. The central character in the story is the boy, he receives encouragement from his sister and becomes a confident artist. He seems to hear the voice of his dead sister which motivates him to paint very well.