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Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte      

Chapters 1-5

1.       Moreen – a kind of strong woolen or cotton fabric

2.       Bewick’s History of British Birds – first published in 1797 and 1804, containing engravings by Thomas Bewick (1753-1828)

3.       “Where the Northern Ocean . . . Hebrides” – an allusion to “Autumn” (1730), a poem by James Thompson (1700-48)

4.       vignettes – snapshots; illustrations used at the beginnings or ends of chapters; Jane is referring to the engravings accompanying the text in Bewick’s book.

5.       Pamela the title of a novel by Samuel Richardson (1689-1761), published in 1740-41

6.       Henry, Earl of Moreland – title of a book by John Wesley (1703-91), published in 1781

7.       Goldsmith’s History of Rome – book by Oliver Goldsmith (c. 1730-74), published in 1769; the Roman emperors Nero and Caligula are famous for their cruelty

8.       Ligature – a thing used in tying or binding

9.       Marseilles – a strong cotton cloth with a raised weave, originally made in Marseilles, France

10.       Bourne – goal; objective

11.    Fagging – hard and tiring work, such as that done by a servant

12.    Convolvuli – twisting vines

13.    Gulliver’s Travels  - famous satiric novel by Jonathan Swift (1667-1745), published in 1726; Lilliput and Brobdingnag are two of the fantastic lands that Gulliver visits.

14.    Guy Fawkes – an infamous conspirator (1570-1606) who was executed for attempting to blow up the king and both houses of Parliament in 1605

15.    Doat – dote; to be excessively fond

16.    Parterre – a garden in which the flower beds form a pattern

17.    Poltroon – coward

18.    Ruth – pity

19.    Sotto voce – in a very low voice, so as not to be overheard

20.    Onding on snaw – on the verge of snowing

21.    Pelisse – an overcoat resembling a long cloak

22.    L_____ 0 possibly Leeds, a city in northern England; Bronte passed through Leeds when she herself was sent away to school at Cowan Bridge.

23.    Stuff frocks – dresses made of woolen cloth

24.    Collect – a short prayer suited to a particular day or occasion

25.    Babel – city mentioned in Genesis 11:1-9, where “the Lord did there confound the language of all the earth”

26.    Organ of veneration – term used in the supposed science of phrenology; phrenologists believed that the shape and bumps of the skull indicate a person’s character and faculties; the novel contains several allusion to phrenology.

27.    Front – brown; forehead

28.    Frieze – a kind of heavy woolen cloth with a shaggy nap on one side

29.    Mullioned – having panes divided by vertical bars

30.    Rasselas – title of a didactic romance by Samuel Johnson (1709-84), published in 1750; in it the main character thinks that “sure happiness is somewhere to be found” but can find it nowhere.


Chapters 6-12

1.       Ewer – a large water pitcher

2.       Charles I – King of England from 1625- 1649, beheaded after Oliver Cromwell overthrew the monarchy

3.       Felix – allusion to Acts 24:25; Felix was a Roman governor who “trembled” when he heard St. Paul teach about righteousness, temperance, and judgment

4.       Northumberland – northermost county in England, bordering Scotland

5.       Cumbrous – cumbersome

6.       Cumberland - area of England near the Scottish border

7.       Hebdomadal – weekly

8.       Moiety – a half portion


English IV