What are three quotes (one for each) that has to do with Scout's, Jem's and Dill's loss of innocence in To Kill a Mockingbird?

1 Answer | Add Yours

bullgatortail's profile pic

bullgatortail | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted on


Jem.  Jem is heartbroken when the secret knothole of the oak tree is suddenly sealed by Nathan Radley. Although Mr. Radley tells Jem that the reason for his action is because the tree is diseased, Atticus points out to his son that the tree is perfectly healthy. Jem is saddened to discover that Radley has lied to him, but the realization that Nathan has done so out of pure meanness--and to prevent further contact between the children and Boo--is the worst blow of all.

     He stood there until nightfall, and I waited for him. When we went in the house, I saw he had been crying: his face was dirty in the right places, but I thought it odd that I had not heard him.

Scout.  Scout has never been more excited about anything than her first day at school.

I never looked forward more to anything in my life.

But it is a terrible one: She is berated for being able to read better than anyone in the class; her teacher, Miss Caroline, accuses Atticus of being a bad teacher; and Scout is "spanked" with a ruler for trying to explain about Walter Cunningham's family's poverty--all before lunch. Scout's experience is so bad that she wants to quit school, and as for the respect that she has lost for Miss Caroline,

Had her conduct been more friendly toward me, I would have felt sorry for her. She was a pretty little thing.

Dill.  Although Jem and Scout are veterans of the courtroom, the trial of Tom Robinson is Dill's first experience. It all becomes too much for him, especially when he has to endure the prosecutor's disrespectful questioning of Tom. When Scout explains that it's Mr. Gilmer's job, and that Tom is "just a Negro," Dill is not satisfied.

"It ain't right, somehow it ain't right to do 'em that way. Hasn't anybody got any business talkin' like that--it just makes me sick."


We’ve answered 317,797 questions. We can answer yours, too.

Ask a question