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What are the six most important events in Fever 1793?

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Fever 1793 is set in Philadelphia, which is the capital of the newly formed United States at the time. Daily life is disturbed by the introduction of yellow fever into the city during a very hot summer. It becomes an epidemic, and every family must decide whether to stay and hope that they are spared or flee to the country, where most people are still healthy.

Mattie is the main character, and her mother and grandfather run a successful coffee house. Mattie is thirteen and prefers not to work very hard. Her mother and Eliza, their cook, indulge her most of the time. Her grandfather adores her and sees no fault in Mattie, no matter what she does or doesn't do.

The first major event involves Polly, their housemaid, who dies of the fever. Polly is also a friend of Mattie's and of a similar age, and Polly was healthy just yesterday. How could this happen?

Mattie's mother causes the next major event by contracting the fever. Doctors come, professing to have the answer to curing the disease. One says to give her special teas; another says that she needs to be bled. He believes that the disease is in the patient's blood; to remove the disease, one must remove the blood.

This illness causes the next event, which is that Mattie and Grandfather must leave the city and go to stay with the Ludingtons, family friends in the country. Lucille, Mattie's mother, will be cared for at home by Eliza. Lucille cannot travel anywhere, because any other community would turn away fever patients.

Mattie and Grandfather cannot find transportation, so they end up in the wagon of a family who are fleeing the fever. The wagon is stopped at the edge of a town by residents who are guarding the road into town. They suspect that Grandfather is ill. The wagon's driver throws them out on the road and takes off, stranding them without their luggage, their clothing, or the food that Eliza had packed for them.

Mattie tries to find food for herself and her grandfather. About the second day of their living out in the open, Mattie collapses. She awakes in Bush Hill, a hospital where they care for fever victims. Grandfather seems healthy now, and he tells her that he went into the city while she was very ill and found that their house was empty and locked up. Now they do not know where Lucille is, nor does she know where they are. Letters are futile, since postal delivery has been halted in this crisis.

When Mattie recovers, she and Grandfather find transportation back home, only to find that the house has been broken into and looted. All the food is gone, most of the crockery and furniture has been smashed, and there is still no sign of Lucille nor Eliza.

The next event happens about the second day that they are home. Mattie is awakened by robbers who hope to steal anything that is left in the house. During the confrontation with the robbers, Grandfather falls and hits his head. He has run the robbers off, but he soon dies. Mattie manages to get him buried in as decent a way as is possible.

Mattie wanders the city, not knowing what to do. She comes upon a toddler whose mother has just died. Mattie cannot leave the child alone in a house with a corpse, so she comforts the little girl and takes her with her. Soon she happens upon Eliza, and Mattie and the child go with Eliza to stay at the house of Eliza's brother, Joseph. Joseph is recovering from the fever.

Joseph's young twins develop the fever, and Mattie and Eliza decide to take them to the coffee house, which is larger, cooler, and away from the waterfront.

One of the main events of the book happens next. They awake to find that there has been a frost. This is wonderful news, because it means that the fever will be killed by the cold. Life slowly returns to more normal ways. Mattie decides to stay at the coffee house and take Eliza on as a partner.

Lucille returns. She has been very ill but is slowly recovering.

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1.The important opening event reveals the death of Polly, a serving girl who grew up with Mattie. Mattie is given no time to grieve for her friend because of the busy needs in running the coffeehouse.

2. Mattie's encounter with Nathaniel and their reminiscing about a balloon launch they attended shows that Mattie has a male interest in her life. Nathaniel is going into seclusion with his master's family to avoid the spreading yellow fever. He gives Mattie flowers.

3.Mattie and her mother, Lucinda, are invited to tea with a wealthy family who is still in Philadelphia, despite the usual out-flux of the wealthy during the hot summer. Here Mattie learns that the rich flee to the countryside to avoid the heat and illness that summer frequently brings.

4. Lucinda, Mattie's mother, falls ill. Mattie tries to take care of her and experiences first-hand the symptoms of the yellow fever. Lucinda orders Mattie and her grandfather to leave for the safety of the Luddington's farm in the country.

5. Mattie takes care of her grandfather when he becomes ill, though not with the plague. Because of his illness, the two are put off the wagon and turned away from a near-by village. Mattie's lessons about soldiering pay off.

6. Mattie falls ill with yellow fever, and her grandfather returns her to a hospital in Philadelphia where she recovers.

7. On their return to the coffeehouse, they find it stripped. Burglars break in and Mattie's grandfather dies defending her.

8. Mattie finds Eliza (a former worker at the coffeehouse) still alive and shelters with her. During that time she finds a toddler named Nell whose mother has died of the plague. Mattie takes care of Nell and becomes very attached to her.

9. Mattie and Eliza return to the coffeehouse and reopen it. Nathaniel and Mattie are reunited with Nathaniel helping out.

10. The rich, including President George Washington, return to the town, showing the plague is at an end. Lucinda returns to the coffeehouse an invalid after her illness and relapse when searching for Mattie.

I know this is more than six events. Each seemed important to me, so pick and choose which six you feel are most crucial to the story.

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