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Die Heuning Pot Literature Guide
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Analysis

Literary Devices in The Moonstone

Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory

The novel is named after the "devilish Indian Diamond" (1.1.5.40), and the disappearance of the Moonstone is what sets off the whole mystery. Because the diamond is so central, there are a lot of t...

Setting

The novel primarily takes place in the Verinders' house in Yorkshire and their house in London. But geographical setting isn't actually all that important in this novel. Sure, the characters are al...

Narrator Point of View

The Moonstone is composed of a series of first-person narratives, memos, letters, and journal entries. The bulk of it is told retrospectively, from the points of view of the people involved in the...

Genre

First and foremost, The Moonstone is a novel. But what, exactly, is a novel? "The novel" is one of the most vague genre categories out there. Critics will argue all day about how, exactly, "the nov...

Tone

All of the narrators imagine themselves to be writing to some unknown future reader, because Franklin Blake's stated purpose in putting together the documents is to tell the story for future genera...

Writing Style

The Moonstone is a mystery, so of course Wilkie Collins tried to make it as suspenseful as possible. One of the ways that he creates suspense is by allowing the narrators to drop hints about what i...

What's Up With the Title?

Victorian novels are usually named after the main character (for example, David Copperfield by Charles Dickens or Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë) or after the location where the action takes pl...

What's Up With the Ending?

In most mystery novels, the author drops enough clues and hints that a really attentive reader might guess the outcome. Not so in The Moonstone. The fact that Franklin Blake, the cousin who is most...

Tough-o-Meter

This novel has some tough vocabulary and some cultural references that will be unfamiliar to many modern readers, simply because it was written 150 years ago. But don't worry: Wilkie Collins isn't...

Plot Analysis

Rachel inherits her uncle's Indian Diamond on her eighteenth birthday.Rachel Verinder is supposed to inherit her uncle Herncastle's Indian diamond on her eighteenth birthday. Of course, her mother...

Booker's Seven Basic Plots Analysis: Comedy

The diamond gets stolen.Looking back on it, the amount of confusion and misunderstanding at the beginning is almost absurd. Did Colonel Herncastle leave his niece, Rachel, the diamond out of spite...

Three Act Plot Analysis

The diamond is stolen!Franklin Blake figures out that he took it…but doesn't remember doing it.Mystery solved: Franklin took it while drugged with opium, but the Godfrey Ablewhite is the one...

Trivia

Wilkie Collins, like his character, Ezra Jennings, was addicted to opium. He started taking it to treat the almost debilitating pain from his rheumatic gout. In fact, in the preface to a later edit...

Steaminess Rating

Not a lot of steaminess in this novel. Like most Victorian novels, sex is a taboo subject. The closest we get to steaminess is when Franklin Blake and Rachel smooch, but then Franklin is too much o...

Allusions

Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe (1.1.1.1): Robinson Crusoe is often cited as the first English novel. It was written in 1719, and was still very popular as Collins was writing The Moonstone in 1868,...
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