Study Guide

Anne of Green Gables Chapter 9

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Chapter 9

Mrs. Rachel Lynde is Properly Horrified

  • Back to Mrs. Rachel Lynde. Remember her? The town gossip? We're told that the only reason she hasn't visited sooner to see Anne is that she's been ill until now.
  • So Mrs. Rachel Lynde arrives at Green Gables, and after describing her illness (grippe) to Marilla in great detail, she brings up Anne.
  • And even before seeing her, Mrs. Lynde doesn't approve, reminding Marilla that she has no idea how to raise a child.
  • Marilla calls Anne in to meet Mrs. Lynde. Anne arrives flushed from outside, still wearing her orphanage dress, with her hair all over the place.
  • Mrs. Lynde tells Anne the Cuthberts couldn't have chosen her for her looks. She calls her skinny and homely (meaning ugly), points out her freckles and compares her hair color to carrots.
  • Anne doesn't take it lying down. She stomps her foot, tells Mrs. Lynde she hates her, calls her a rude, impolite, unfeeling woman, and asks her how she'd feel if someone told her she was fat, clumsy, and didn't have a spark of imagination.
  • Predictably, Marilla sends Anne to her room.
  • But once Anne's gone, Marilla tells Mrs. Lynde that she shouldn't have been so hard on her.
  • Now Mrs. Lynde is really angry. She has a lot of snide things to say to say to Marilla as she leaves the house in an outrage, including suggesting that Anne should be hit with a switch as punishment.
  • Marilla can't imagine whipping a child. But she does come up with a nice, humiliating punishment: she orders Anne to apologize to Mrs. Lynde and ask for forgiveness.
  • Anne refuses, saying she'd rather be locked in a dungeon. She also asks Marilla to imagine how it must have felt to hear those things, which reminds Marilla of hearing something similar when she was a child. It made her feel bad for years.
  • Still, Marilla sticks to her plan and tells Anne she can't leave her room until she apologizes.

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