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Yertle the Turtle and Other Stories

Yertle the Turtle and Other Stories


by Dr. Seuss

Yertle the Turtle and Other Stories The Big Brag, Lines 1 – 8 Summary

Everyone's a Yertle 

  • From the very first lines, Seuss establishes the essential character problem we'll be dealing with throughout the story.
  • We encounter not just any rabbit but a rabbit we're told twice (once with a big SO) considers himself to be very important.
  • So important he needs to "brag" and "boast" loudly, throwing out his chest and letting all of the other animals know how much better than them he is.
  • Notice the line, "Then he started in bragging, as animals will." Now consider it next to these lines: "Of all of the beasts in the world, I'm the best!/ On land, and on sea…even up in the sky/ No animal lives who is better than I!" (6 – 8).
  • What other animal do you remember reading about recently who thought he was better than every animal out there, even those up in the sky? What animal do you recall knowing she wasn't better than another animal… and then doing everything she could to change that? Yep, "The Big Brag" fits right on in with Yertle and Gertrude.
  • The thread that ties these stories together: animals (of which—horror!—we are one) are vain, jealous, ambitious creatures. And vain, jealous, ambitious creatures will always have a few lessons to learn.
  • Now let's see how Seuss brings this rabbit down.

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