A White Heron Essay

Custom Student Mr. Teacher ENG 1001-04 15 September 2016

A White Heron

Comment on how the author makes Sylvia a very special character Sylvia, the main character in Sarah Orne Jewett’s ‘A White Heron’, was a very special character. She gave up money, and gave up her love to a man in order to protect the nature. Through these actions readers can understand why Sylvia was special. Sylvia was a very special character by giving up a chance to earn money from the man. The man that Sylvia met was a collector who hunted birds and stuffed them. He met Sylvia and wanted Sylvia to give him shelter for the night.

After knowing that Sylvia knew the forest very well, the man wanted to offer Sylvia ten dollars to show him where the White Heron was. At the time ten dollars could buy many things, but she refused to accept the ten dollars to protect the white heron, thus showing her care of nature by rejecting the temptation of money. Another example of Sylvia as a very special character was her willingness in giving up the chance to follow and love the men she liked. Sylvia was a very shy girl who didn’t like to talk to people and had left the cities for the countryside.

The collector had proved to Sylvia that he was very kind and generous. Because of this Sylvia watched the guy with loving admirations because she had never seen anyone so charming and delightful. Through the description of how Sylvia thought about the collector, readers can tell that Sylvia liked him and ‘wanted to serve him and follow him and love him as a dog loves its master’. However, after seeing how amazing the White Heron was, Sylvia decided to protect the bird and gave up the chance of telling how she felt about the collector, which makes Sylvia very different from most children at her age.

Most people would not give up their love, and would not care if a wild creature would get killed and collected. Therefore, Sylvia was a special character. What made Sylvia most special was that she loved nature so deeply. The people in Sylvia’s time did not have the sense of protecting nature, but Sylvia was not one of those people. This is shown though the description at the start of the story where Sylvia is described as ‘a child who loved the out-of-doors so much’, and decided that the woods ‘is a lovely place to live, I’ll never want to return to the city’. Sylvia loved the countryside and the forests.

Also, she was very close with the animals in the forest. ‘She knew every foot of the ground in the woods as well as the wild creatures that live there. Squirrels come and eat from her hand and birds too, thus the fact that Sylvia felt at home in the countryside and in the woods makes her a very special character. Throughout the story ‘A White Heron’, Sylvia is depicted as a very special character. This is shown through her determination not to see the White Heron harmed. She gave up the chance to earn money and to love someone just to conserve the nature, to which the heron belonged.

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  • University/College: University of Chicago

  • Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter

  • Date: 15 September 2016

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