The Sign of the Beaver Quotes


No way of telling which way the man had taken or how long he had been on his way while Matt slept. Ben was gone and so was the rifle. He should have kept it in his hands, as his hunch had warned him.

Narrator, Chapter Three

Matt had been warned to be wary of Indians but inherently trusted white men whom he felt obliged to offer hospitality to as a representative of his family. This incident marked Matt's growing realization that he needed to judge everyone one their own merits not on what he had been told about them. It also illustrates why Matt was very fortunate to meet Attean when he did as without his showing Matt how to hunt the young boy would have gone hungry without his gun to hunt with.

My grandmother very surprised white boy go long way for Indian dog.

Attean to Matt, Cjapter Nineteen

After Matt had gone to great lengths to save the life of Attean's dog, Attean's grandmother, who hates white men, relents and realizes that just as the settlers judge all Indians to be uneducated savages, she judges all white people to be murderers and land thieves. Seeing Matt go to so much trouble for Attean's dog, she softens her opinion of him somewhat, and makes him welcome in her home.

No wonder she hate us," he said at last. "Terrible things always happen when there's a war - on both sides. You've got to admit, Attean, that there was a reason. The Indians did the same thing to white settlers. The white women were afraid to go outside their cabins."

"Why white men make cabins on Indian hunting grounds?"

Matt and Attean, Chapter Seventen

Tho conversation relates to what happened to Attean's mother who was scalped and slaughtered by white settlers. Matt wants Attean to understand that the Indians did the same thing and that there was a great deal of provocation but Attean does not understand why settlers take the Indian lands. This is a major source of conflict but Matt admits that Attean is probably absolutely right.

You look different, Matt. You're 'most as tall as your pa. And awful thin. You're so brown I'd have taken you for an Indian.

Matt's Mother, Chapter Twenty Five

Matt looks greatly different to his mother partly because he is different, feeling in himself to have the stature of a man and no longer that of a boy, but partly because he has been living like an Indian and not like a settler. The irony of his mother's observation is that unbeknownst to her he almost became an honorary member of the beaver tribe and his life has been far more of the Indians than the settlers.

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