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Duchess and the Jeweller

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Angus A. Ahwireng

Mrs.Fendley

English IV, 7th block

25 February 208

Identity and Prestige

The "Duchess and the Jeweller" is one of the short stories written by the British writer "Virginia Woolf." The story basically revolves around the desire of a common man for prestige and identity and how he is not hindered by anything to accomplish this goal. Oliver Bacon, the main character in the short story is well developed by the author using many literary techniques to describe his character as a many sided man. Analyzing story elements such as: protagonist, conflict and theme give a better understanding into the ambitions of the jeweller the main character.

The first story element, being the protagonist will give powerful evidence about the ambitions of the main character. From the very beginning of the story, readers are given vivid descriptions of Oliver Bacon's ambitious habit. Although in his present life he is compared to his younger days, the jeweller is still missing that prestige and identity he has been longing for. He reveals his deepest passion is for jewellery rather than for other human beings. This is evident in that he gives human attributes to the precious gems as if they were humans. "Heart's blood! he said, looking at the rubies." (Woolf 1049). His passion for such gems has overtaken his love for other humans clearly, but readers sympathize with his situation because of his past. In the short story, Oliver many times recalls his younger days as a source of comfort to reassure himself that he is on that right track to prominence. "You who began life in a filthy, little alley." (Woolf 1050) He continues to look to the past and worships the memory of his mother as a source of inspiration. He wants to please the memory of his mother, but at times has failed to do so, which makes him recall his past to remind himself of his ambitions. In the story he apologizes

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