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In Charlotte Brontë’s novel Jane Eyre, Jane at one point describes her first evening at Thornfield. Having traveled a long journey to get there and feeling very tired, Jane is pleased to find that she has a comfortable bed in attractive lodgings. She comments,
My couch had no thorns in it that night; my solitary room no fears. At once weary and content, I slept soon and soundly: when I awoke it was broad day.
Jane’s reference to her “couch” having “no thorns” in it is a metaphor meaning that she slept soundly and comfortably. It is as if (she suggests) she was able to sleep without being bricked with any pains or discomforts, either physical or psychological.
The reference to “thorns” cannot help but remind us that she is now a resident of Thornfield, an estate with an appropriate name since it will later prove to be a source of much pain and discomfort to Jane.
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