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Great Expectations

Great Expectations


by Charles Dickens

Great Expectations Contrasting Regions Quotes

How we cite our quotes: (Chapter.Paragraph)

Quote #1

Ours was the marsh country, down by the river, within, as the river wound, twenty miles of the sea. My first most vivid and broad impression of the identity of things, seems to me to have been gained on a memorable raw afternoon towards evening. (1.3)

Hm, this isn't starting off well: "marsh country" and "raw afternoon" don't really give us the impression of a happy, bucolic childhood.

Quote #2

It was a rimy morning, and very damp. I had seen the damp lying on the outside of my little window, as if some goblin had been crying there all night, and using the window for a pocket-handkerchief. Now, I saw the damp lying on the bare hedges and spare grass, like a coarser sort of spiders' webs; hanging itself from twig to twig and blade to blade. On every rail and gate, wet lay clammy; and the marsh-mist was so thick, that the wooden finger on the post directing people to our village—a direction which they never accepted, for they never came there—was invisible to me until I was quite close under it. Then, as I looked up at it, while it dripped, it seemed to my oppressed conscience like a phantom devoting me to the Hulks. (3.1)

The mists make things look "phantom-like" and "invisible"—almost as though the marshes are a dream-world. Or, maybe a nightmare world. Either way, there's something not-quite-real about them.

Quote #3

The journey from our town to the metropolis, was a journey of about five hours. It was a little past mid-day when the four-horse stage-coach by which I was a passenger, got into the ravel of traffic frayed out about the Cross Keys, Wood-street, Cheapside, London. (20.1)

Okay, five hours is probably more like twenty minutes today. But just because you can get to London in a day doesn't mean that the two places have much in common: to Pip, this is like moving all the way across the continent for college.

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