How does Sylvia Townsend Warner make the ending so effective in "The Phoenix"?
The ending to "The Phoenix" is so effective because Mr. Poldero's greed brings about his own downfall.
After buying the Phoenix out from under a group of people who were truly interested in the bird, he quickly grows bored of it. Since the public has seen it and it isn't active or particularly interesting in captivity, he feels that he's wasting money on it. Since a phoenix's most intriguing quality is that it dies in flames and is reborn, he decides to speed up the process to attract more attention and make more money.
Mr. Poldero abuses the bird horribly to try to age it. It finally works. On the day of its...
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