What comment does Mr. Ewell make which is reported by Miss Stephanie in To Kill a Mockingbird?

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bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

    After Atticus had reduced Robert E. Lee Ewell even further at the Tom Robinson trial in the Harper Lee novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, and "destroyed his last shred of credibility," Bob felt obligated to make known his feelings personally to Atticus. So, Bob responded in the manner he knew best. Miss Stephanie was there to witness the whole thing.

Atticus was leaving the post office when Mr. Ewell approached him, cursed him, spat on him, and threatened to kill him... Atticus didn't bat an eye, just tok out his handkerchief and wiped his face and let Mr. Ewell call him names wild horses could not bring her to repeat.

Then, Bob and Atticus shared an exchange which Miss Stephanie later claimed was an achievement of dry humor.

"Too proud to fight, you nigger-lovin' bastard?" Miss Stephanie said Atticus said, "No, too old."
    Jem and I didn't think it entertaining.

As for Atticus, his only comment was, "I wish Bob Ewell wouldn't chew tobacco." He later explained to Jem that Bob didn't have much choice--that he had to have "a comeback"--and used the "stand in his shoes" analogy once again to try to clarify Ewell's actions.


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To Kill a Mockingbird

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