Do you think that the instructions to this girl are given on the same occasion?

Expert Answers

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I do not think they are all being given at exactly the same time.  However, I think they are all being given at roughly the same time -- at the same kind of stage in the daughter's life.

I do not think they can possibly be all given on the same occasion because there are too many different instructions -- ones that would take way too long to all be demonstrated at the same time.  For example, I doubt that the mother is showing the daughter how to make buttonholes, how to set the table for breakfast, and how to sweep the yard all in a row.

But I do think it's all at about the same time.  That's because all of this stuff is stuff that the mother would think that a young adolescent girl would need to know.  If her age were changing significantly during the poem, it wouldn't make sense to have instructions that are all appropriate to the same general age.

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