The Adventure of the Yellow Face Imagery

The Adventure of the Yellow Face Imagery

the yellow face

Clearly the most important and telling imagery is that of the yellow face itself. Every describtion is meant to intensify the loathing and disgust the reader feels towards it. It is described as "a livid dead yellow" "unnatural" and "inhuman". Grant claims that there is an unnatural rigidity to it that revolts him.

spring in London

The story begins with Watson and Holmes taking a walk in the park. Watson, the narrator, describes the trees as "just beginning to break out in green". He relates the chestnuts as "bursting into five-fold leaves." The overall impression the reader takes in is that spring is literally leaping to life, surging forth on every side. This exhuberance of life is meant to contrast the sinister happenings in their client's life.

description of Grant by the page boy

Holmes and Watson return from their walk to find that a client has come and gone in their absence. The page boy describes him as extremely restless; "a-walkin' and a-stampin'". In a unique form of imagery, we "hear" Grant before we actually "see" him, and our minds conjure up the picture of an excited and energetic man.

Effie's anxiety

As Grant is narrating the incident of his wife's mysterious flight in the night, he describes her as "deadly pale", and "slinking around the room." Even in Grant's hurried narration, our minds have already conceived a woman pushed to the edges of nervous tension.

the interior of the mysterious house

In this sequence, Grant relates how he rushed into the mysterious house and found it deserted, save for a kettle "singing on the fire" and a large cat curled up in a basket. Doyle's depiction of the house is clever for several reasons. First, in contrast with the negative opinion Grant has formed of the place, it appears rather peaceful and domestic within. This somehow makes the house seem even more mysterious, when considered in light of its odious inhabitant.

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