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Probably the most revealing example of Mayella being a victim of her father's evil ways comes from Atticus himself in Chapter 20 of To Kill a Mockingbird. In Atticus' summation, he admits that he pities Mayella and claims that she is a victim of her family upbringing. But Atticus' pity only goes so far, however, because he blames her for trying to cover up the lie that she has perpetrated against Tom Robinson.
"I have nothing but pity in my heart for the chief witness for the state...
"She has committed no crime... She is the victim of cruel poverty and ignorance..."
Even Tom pities Mayella--and this proves to be an admission that does not help him in court. Tom went to her aid on several occasions because he felt sorry for her having to take care of all of the Ewell children herself.
"Mr. Ewell didn't seem to help her none, and neither did the chillun, and I knowed she didn't have no nickels to spare..."
"I felt right sorry for her, she seemed to try more'n the rest of 'em."
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