Symbolism In Ethan Frome

This essay has a total of 482 words and 2 pages.

Symbolism in Ethan Frome


Symbolism can give additional meaning to a variety of texts. From music to movies to novels, symbolism creates an even deeper meaning than found in a surface reading. The symbolism found within Ethan Frome adds to the inherent meaning of the text to give it an even deeper meaning. Edith Wharton uses the pickle dish, the Oak tree, and the cat as symbols to achieve deeper meaning. The pickle dish is of great significance in the novel. It is used to represent Zeena's virginity. Mattie seamed to know a great deal more about the pickle dish than Ethan did. She had to remind him "It was a wedding present don't you remember? It came all the way from Philadelphia, from Zeena's aunt that married a minister"(70). Ethan never bothered to pay much attention to the pickle dish. When Zeena returned and noticed that the pickle dish was broken she said, "It takes the step-ladder to get at the top shelf, and I put Aunt Philura Maple's pickle-dish up there o' purpose when we was married, and it's never been down since, 'cept for the spring cleaning, and then I always lifted it with my own hands, so's 't shouldn't get broke"(100). The symbolism becomes clear when Zeena explains that the only person to touch it is herself and only to clean it. The oak tree is used to symbolize Ethan in the novel. The con

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