How is the mood and atmosphere described in chapter 1 of Great Expectations by Charles Dickens?

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Chapter One of Great Expectations introduces us to Pip, develops his character, describes the dreary marshlands in which he lives, and sets the plot going with the introduction of the fugitive Magwitch. Dickens uses tone skillfully to support these aims. It’s not all doom and gloom; Dicken’s use of description reinforces Pip’s essential humanity. A close reading will show that even Magwitch is worth some compassion as well.

One example of this is Pip’s own narrative of his family, the knowledge of which comes entirely from their tombstones. Of his parents, his “first fancies regarding what they were like were unreasonably derived from their tombstones. The shape of the letters on my father's, gave me an odd idea that he was a square, stout, dark man, with curly black hair.” The “stone lozenges” of his five dead siblings lead Pip to think “that they had all been born on their backs with their hands in their trousers-pockets, and had never taken them out in this state of...

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 629 words.)

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