The Scarlet Pimpernel

Explain the following lines as applied to this story, and then as they apply to people today.

1. How thoroughly a human being can be buffeted and overmastered by fate...

2.thus human beings judge of one another, superficially, casually, throwing contempt on one another, with but little reason, and no charity

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1. If one believes in fate, then humans are not masters of their fate. Fate can take over the life of a human which is the point. Many of the characters as they interact with the "whims" of the French Revolution are not in charge of their fate. Therefore, they are moved (buffeted) back and forth. People today often do not take charge and leave themselves open to the whims of others.

2. As humans, we often do not look below the surface to discover what other people are really like. We make judgments with almost no basis, and we prefer to quickly judge people and look down on them (throwing contempt on one another) when we have no basis for such beliefs. People have not changed - this is a universal way people continue to act in their human relationships.