What are the literal and figurative meanings to the Roman fever in Edith Wharton’s short story, "Roman Fever"? 

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The double meaning of "Roman Fever" is that it refers literally to an feverish ailment to which one is susceptible in the cool air after sunset, and figuratively to a feverish battle for Delphin Slade by two women who were rivals for his love.

On their second trip to Rome, one in which they are the spectators rather than the actors in what occurs, Grace Ansley and Alida Slade sit quietly on the parapet watching the sun set over the ancient city. They are

...two ladies who had been intimate since childhood [but they] reflected how little they knew each other.

Both ladies have...

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