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Matilda

Matilda

by Roald Dahl

The Supernatural Quotes

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #1

"I know it's a ghost!" Matilda said. "I've heard it here before! This room is haunted! I thought you knew that." (4.56)

While this seems like a supernatural moment to everybody else in the chapter (the Wormwood parents and Matilda's older brother), it totally has a logical explanation. There is no "ghost." It's a parrot. But, because the other people in the room don't know the logical explanation, they have to believe that it really is a ghost.

Quote #2

And now, quite slowly, there began to creep over Matilda a most extraordinary and peculiar feeling. The feeling was mostly in the eyes. A kind of electricity seemed to be gathering inside them. A sense of power was brewing in those eyes of hers, a feeling of great strength was settling itself deep inside her eyes. (14.26)

Before this moment, Matilda knew she loved to read and use her mind, but she was frustrated by being such a small, underappreciated kid. With this electricity, she has a feeling of great strength for maybe the first time in her life.

Quote #3

"Tip it!" Matilda whispered. "Tip it over!"

She saw the glass wobble. It actually tilted backwards a fraction of an inch, then righted itself again. She kept pushing at it with all those millions of invisible little arms and hands that were reaching out from her eyes, feeling the power that was flashing straight from the two little black dots in the very centres of her eyeballs. (14.28)

Since most of us are unlikely to move things with our own minds in real life (unless there's something Shmoop doesn't know about you), a writer who's describing telekinesis has to go the extra mile to make sure the readers get a feel for exactly what the process is like. We'd say Roald Dahl delivers on that here. Can't you imagine the millions of invisible little arms and hands that are reaching out of Matilda's eyeballs?

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