The Wind in the Willows

Why did Badger call Toad a "backsliding animal"?

Chapter 6

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In private, Toad confessed to Badger the error of his ways, but when put on the spot before the other animals, he admits that he would have said anything to get out of the smoking room.

'No!' he said, a little sullenly, but stoutly; 'I'm NOT sorry. And it wasn't folly at all! It was simply glorious!'

'What?' cried the Badger, greatly scandalised. 'You backsliding animal, didn't you tell me just now, in there——'

'Oh, yes, yes, in THERE,' said Toad impatiently. 'I'd have said anything in THERE. You're so eloquent, dear Badger, and so moving, and so convincing, and put all your points so frightfully well—you can do what you like with me in THERE, and you know it. But I've been searching my mind since, and going over things in it, and I find that I'm not a bit sorry or repentant really, so it's no earthly good saying I am; now, is it?'


The Wind in the Willows