What was wrong with the seamstress's little boy in "The Happy Prince"?

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There are a number of hardships displayed in Oscar Wilde's short story "The Happy Prince ." The statue of the Happy Prince is initially able to see the sadness contained within his city, and he directs the helpful swallow to take various aspects of the statue's own body to help the people who need it. The seamstress and her little boy are two of those who need help. The statue of the Happy Prince tells the little swallow about the poor woman and her child, saying "[h]er face is thin and worn, and she has coarse, red hands, all pricked by the needle, for...

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