In "The Open Window", did Mr. Nuttel lose a loved one also? It seems as if someone close to him has died.Saki says that Frampton, who laboured under the tolerably wide-spread delusion that total...

In "The Open Window", did Mr. Nuttel lose a loved one also? It seems as if someone close to him has died.

Saki says that Frampton, who laboured under the tolerably wide-spread delusion that total strangers and chance acquaintances are hungry for the least detail of one's ailments and Infirmities, their cause and cure.

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ms-mcgregor eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Although the cause for Nuttel's nervous condition is never directly stated, I doubt if his problems were caused by a loss of a loved one. The first clue Saki gives is his name, "Nuttel" which is reminiscent of the word "nut"--as in "nut case". The implication is that Nuttel is simply a little nutty. The quote that you use indicates that Nuttel loved to talk about his "infirmities" or ailments. Most people who have lost loved ones have a very difficult time discussing their loss. Rather, it seems that Nuttel is closer to one we would call a hypochondriac, a person who talks excessively about perceived illnesses, real or not. The fact that he is in the country because his sister sent him there, may indicate that she is tired of listening to his complaints and has sent him off somewhere to give herself a break. It also indicates that Nuttel is not married, probably because no woman wants to listen to him talk incessantly about his health. He also may suffer from depression, given the fact that his sister is worried that he will lock himself away in total seclusion---a prime symptom of depression.