tablesetting complete with forks, knives, and spoons, and a baby on the plate in the center above the words "A Modest Proposal"

A Modest Proposal

by Jonathan Swift

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How does Jonathan Swift use the word "dressing" in three different ways in "A Modest Proposal"?

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I found three references to the word dressing in the essay

The first reference, below has to do with the serving of roasted children, much in the same way that roasted pig is served, and carving up the meat when it is hot, and serving it so that it can be enjoyed, just like roasted pig. 

"although I rather recommend buying the children alive, and dressing them hot from the knife, as we do roasting pigs." (Swift)

The second reference has to do with the seasoning used in cooking the children and how some taverns and establishments could become well known for their fine cuisine.  They could become expert in their recipes at roasting and serving children, it would become the finest food in the land.

" Fifthly, This food would likewise bring great custom to taverns; where the vintners will certainly be so prudent as to procure the best receipts for dressing it to perfection," (Swift)

The third reference I found was about using the skin of the children to make gloves or boots.  Swift makes it sound like the skin of children, much like cows could be manufactured, with the right treatment and decoration, into fine gloves and boots.  Nothing from the slaughter would go to waste. 

Those who are more thrifty (as I must confess the times require) may flay the carcass; the skin of which artificially dressed will make admirable gloves for ladies, and summer boots for fine gentlemen. (Swift)

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