Die Heuning Pot Literature Guide
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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 Yertle the Turtle, Lines 71 – 74 Summary

Highest of the High

  • Yertle won't have any of it.
  • Just look at the expression on his face and how he's holding his body. Then look to the turtle right below him, schvitzing away. Then, look at the words.
  • "Hush up your mouth"? "You've no right to talk to the world's highest turtle"?
  • Yertle thinks that by being the highest both literally and figuratively, he can do whatever he wants.
  • Can you imagine if someone did this at the dinner table? Just climbed up on top of the table and proclaimed, "I am now higher than you—indeed, there is nothing higher—and therefore I shall determine what, when, how, and why we eat… among a few other things, which you will be informed of via text message."
  • But, as we all know too well, this is precisely what happens in far too many governments and institutions. With the turtles stacked as they are, it's hard to see much of anything knocking Yertle from his perch.
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