Study Guide

Grace Poole in Jane Eyre

By Charlotte Brontë

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Grace Poole

Grace Poole, a stout, middle-aged, red-haired seamstress who works as a servant at Thornfield Hall, is secretly the nursemaid and prison guard for the insane Bertha Mason. Jane keeps assuming that Grace is responsible for the eerie laugh on the third floor, the attempt to burn Rochester alive, and other strange and creepy nighttime deeds.

Grace’s main function in the novel is as a red herring, a piece of misdirection. If this were The Wizard of Oz, Grace would be the giant head of the wizard, and Bertha would be the man behind the curtain.

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