© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
Charlotte's Web

Charlotte's Web


by E. B. White

Charlotte's Web Coming of Age Quotes

How we cite our quotes: (Chapter.Paragraph)

Quote #7

"Maybe," said Charlotte quietly. "However, I have a feeling I'm not going to see the results of last night's efforts. I don't feel good at all. I think I'm languishing, to tell you the truth."

Wilbur didn't understand the word "languish" and he hated to bother Charlotte by asking her to explain. But he was so worried he felt he had to ask.

"What does 'languishing' mean?"

"It means I'm slowing up, feeling my age. I'm not young any more, Wilbur. But I don't want you to worry about me." (19.21-24)

For Charlotte, growing up means growing older. And being older means Charlotte's got lots of wisdom. We're pretty thankful that she has the know-how to save our buddy Wilbur. But growing up also means that she has less energy, which stinks big time.

Quote #8

"Get up!" screamed Wilbur. "Stop acting like a spoiled child!"

Templeton grinned and lay still. (21.38-39)

When Wilbur realizes that Charlotte's egg sac needs to be fetched before the Zuckermans head back to their farm, he demands that Templeton help out. And what does Templeton want to do? Nothing at all, that's what. Check out how Wilbur takes charge here. It doesn't sound like he's an infant anymore. Instead of being the one acting like a child, now Wilbur is the one giving the orders.

Quote #9

"We have no time to lose!" shouted Mr. Zuckerman. "Lurvy, help with the crate!"

"Can I have some money?" asked Fern.

"You wait!" said Mrs. Arable. "Can't you see everybody is busy?" (19.58-60)

Fern sure has changed over the course of the novel. At first, she couldn't stand being away from Wilbur. Now, when Wilbur is about to get a special prize, all she cares about is money to spend at the fair. Clearly Mrs. Arable is annoyed by this change. What do you think about Fern's new attitude?

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...