In The Cherry Orchard, how is the Cherry Orchard perceived by the servant class?

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accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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You might want to respond to this question through thinking about how First talks about the cherry orchard and what he thinks about it. He, as an older character, seems to fit into the general trend of reminsicing very fondly about the halcyon days of the cherry orchard when it was in full production and when the cherries were made into jam. He is a character who seems to dwell more in the past than the present, living in the glory days when the estate had more than enough money. As the only living link to the better days of the estate, in many ways he as a character symbolises those glory days. Note how he talks about the orchard in the following quote:

In the old days, forty or fifty years back, they dried the cherries, soaked them and pickled them, and made jam of the... and then we'd send the dried cherries off in carts to Moscow and Kharkov. And money! And the dried cherries were soft, juicy, sweet, and nicely scented...

Although he is possibly going senile, we can see from this quote that to Firs, the cherry orchard is something to be revered and remembered, and something that is intimately connected with past times and a very different kind of life from the life that is being experienced by the Ranevsky family now.

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