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Fever 1793--A-Z Terms

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S: Fever 1793 A-Z Terms

BC: Fever 1793

FC: Fever 1793--A-Z Terms

1: By Nina Cheng | April 12, 2012 | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

2: Fever | A--As Red as an Overripe Cherry (L) | "‘Only if you sit as well’, I said. ‘Your face is as red as an overripe cherry’" (125). | Matilda and her grandfather have just arrived back into Philadelphia, to find that their whole coffeehouse has been robbed of food. Some furniture also has been destroyed.

3: “The city had turned a mansion on Bush Hill into a hospital for fever victims. According to the gossips, Bush Hill was one step away from Hell, filled with dead bodies and criminals who preyed on the weak” (101). | B--Bush Hill (P) | Fever | After Matilda comes down with yellow fever, she is taken to Bush Hill to heal. After she recuperates, Matilda is immune.

4: Fever | C--Coffeehouse (P) | “A coffeehouse was a respectable business for a widow and her father in law to run. Mother refused to serve spirits, but she allowed card games and a small bit of gambling as long as she didn’t have to see it” (7). | Matilda's family ran a coffeehouse. In that period of time, coffeehouses were pretty popular; people would gather in them to talk, eat, and relax.

5: Fever | D--Droll (V) | The meaning of droll is "amusing in an odd way". Before the epidemic, Matilda's family was tired, but happy. The yellow fever completely changed their lifestyles, as it did to many Americans. | “Silas yowled. Eliza and Grandfather burst into laughter. ‘Very droll,’ I said” (37).

6: Fever | "Eliza is the coffeehouse cook. Mother couldn't prepare a meal fit for pigs. I found this amusing, considering our last name was Cook" (8). | E--Eliza (C) | Eliza is a freed slave who works as a cook for the coffeehouse, run by Matilda's family. She and Matilda are really close, and they help each other out during the epidemic.

7: Fever | F--Free African Society (F) | Richard Allen and Absalom Jones together founded the Free African Society in 1787. Richard Allen was a slave in Philadelphia, then bought his freedom. After doing so, he helped found the African Methodist Episcopal Church. Absalom Jones was also born a slave, but was set free. The two of them founded this society to helpAfrican Americans who were widowed, ill, or unemployed. They also took care of many victims of yellow fever during the epidemic.

8: Girard could have escaped the epidemic, but he stayed to help the victims. He supervised the transformation of Bush Hill. When he was finished, Bush Hill was safe for its fever patients.'He himself had survived from the fever. | G--Girard (Stephen) (C) | Stephen Girard was born in France, and fought on the American side during the Revolutionary War. He was one of the richest men in the country, and had made several fortunes in shipping and banking.

9: Matilda wants to go to France when she grows up and bring back all kinds of souvenirs and the like. She also wants to own an entire city block. Sadly, her luxurious dreams are interrupted by the arrival of Yellow Fever. | H--Hard as A Mule (L) | "If I was going to work as hard as a mule, it might as well be for my own benefit. I was going to travel to France and bring back fabrics and combs and jewelry that the ladies of Philadelphia would swoon over" (12).

10: I--Intuders (P) | "I froze against the wall as the short one approached, grumbling under his breath. The window was just beyond my left hand, and the chest of drawers was on the other side of the window. I tried not to breathe" (138). | The night Matilda and her Grandfather return to their coffeehouse, two robbers enter the house, looking for valuables and money. Matilda and Grandfather defend themselves, but in the chaos, Grandfather dies. Matilda is now on her own. Her independence and survival ability is now being tested.

11: Two hearts that have been merged is marriage; two souls that have been merged is fate. | J--Jeannine (C) | "Jeannine unfolded a silk fan and waved it, blowing a cloud of curls off her forehead. Sheilding her mouth from her mother with the fan, she stuck her tongue out at me" (50). | Fever | Matilda is invited to tea at the Ogilvies. She and her mother go, although Matilda abhors the girls, especially Jeannine, who looks down on her. Matilda feels she is not one of them and doesn't belong. At tea, the older sister comes down with yellow fever, and faints at the table.

12: Fever | K--Dr. Kerr (C) | "I flinched as the lancet flashed and blood from Mother's arm poured into the basin. Dr. Kerr handed me a second basin when the first was full. My stomach turned over, but I clenched my jaw and stood firm" (72). | Dr. Kerr is the second doctor that visits Mother, and breaks it to the family that she is ill with yellow fever and must be fed. He then prescribes ten grains of jalap and ten of calomel before he leaves. | Fever

13: L--Lucille (C) | "The sun coming in the south window cast deep shadows under her eyes and cheekbones. She held her jaw tight, her eyes flashing with anger. She looked old, much older than she should. She hadn't always been so pinch-faced and harsh" (17). | Lucille is Matilda's mother, who runs the family coffeehouse. Unfortunately, she comes down with yellow fever, forcing Matilda to flee Philadelphia. But even after leaving her, Matilda thinks constantly about her mother.

14: Fever | M--Mother Smith's House (P) | "A tiny woman leaning on a cane slowly made her way into the room. Snow-colored hair framed a deeply-lined face the color of aged mahogany. She looked to be the oldest person I had ever seen" (172). | After Matilda and Eliza reunite, Eliza takes them to her brother's house, where Mother Smith is basically in charge of everything. Matilda and Nell stay there for the time being.

15: Fever | N--Nell (C) | "A small child cowered in the corner, her blond hair loose and tangled, her feet bare and black from dirt. She was sucking her thumb and keening to herself" (161). | Matilda finds a little orphan girl in the corner of a street, whose mother had already died of yellow fever. Matilda doesn't have the heart to leave her out in the streets, so she takes the little girl, Nell, with her.

16: TRUE LOVE | O--Out! Get her Out! (P) | "Mother finally roused. She blinked her eyes and pointed at me. ‘Get her out’ she whispered. ‘Out!’ A cough choked off the rest of her words" (72). | Even though Mother has come down with fever, she doesn't wish Matilda to get it, so she demands that Mattie get away from her.

17: Fever | P--Pestilence (V) | "The only creatures to benefit from this pestilence are the rats" (158). | In Philadelphia's marketplace, Matilda sees a dirty street, no people, and tons of rats, who are not affected by this pestilence negatively. | The word pestilence is a noun, and it means "a deadly epidemic disease", in this case referring to the yellow fever.

18: Q--Quill (L) | "An early winter quill had etched an icy pattern over the garden. My skirt looked as if it had been dusted with fine white flour" (210). | After a long wait, winter is finally here, along with the frost. This kills the mosquitoes, and marks the beginning of the end of yellow fever. Definitely something to be happy about!

19: To say something resolutely means to say it with purpose, to say it determinedly. | R--Resolutely (V) | "‘He'll be fine, and those babies will be fine,’ said Mother Smith resolutely as she patted Joseph's arm" (201). | Matilda and Eliza are taking Joseph's sons to the coffeehouse, so they recover from the yellow fever.

20: S--Like a Sack of Potatoes (L) | "The men set the shroud on the ground. ‘You can't justtoss him in there like a sack of potatoes,’I said. ‘Where's the minister? You're not supposed to bury people without prayers’" (153). | Matilda's grandfather is being buried, and she is angered at the fact that there isn't even a service for him. In the epidemic, there were many dead people that there was no time for ministers to say prayers for every person.

21: Fever | T--Tethered (V) | "When I came upon the open windows of the Federal Gazette office, it was a shock. A horse was tethered by the door. I stumbled through the door, eager for a friendly face" (156). | To tether means to fasten an animal to a fixed object, therefore preventing it from wandering off or running away. In this case, the horse is fastened by a rope to the door.

22: U--Understanding (P) | In the beginning, Mattie and her mother do not get along very well at all. Mother wishes Mattie to be a hardworking girl, and to marry someone of a high social status. Mattie, however, wishes that her mother wasn't always so cross and stressed out about everything. | "Mother had been a perfect girl. Her family was wealthy then, but that didn't stop her from stitching entire quilts before breakfast, or spinning miles of wool before tea. It was the war, she liked to remind me. Children did what was asked of them. And she never complained. Oh, no, never. Good children were seen and not heard. How utterly unlike me" (2).

23: V--Victim (F) | Did you know that in merely three months, yellow fever had wiped out 10% of Philadelphia's population? That's 5000 people! Many view it as one of the worst epidemics in the history of the United States! | In this book, Polly, the serving girl, is one of the first of many to get sick and die.

24: W--Wraith (V) | "You look like a wraith" (166). | As Matilda searches for Eliza, one woman comments that she looks like a wraith, or a visible spirit. After all, Matilda is pale thin, and looking quite malnourished.

25: X--Examiner (F) | The French and American treatment for yellow fever was very different. The treatment of the French was relatively mild. They suggested rest, fresh air, and lots of water. | The treatment of Americans like Dr. Benjamin Rush, was very aggressive. Patients were bled, and were given "medicine" that caused vomiting and diarrhea.

26: Y--Yellow Fever (F) | Unfortunately, yellow fever still exists, but not in the US. It was discovered that a certain species of mosquito spread the disease. A vaccine has already been made, but thousands of people in Africa and South America die from it each year.

27: Z--Zzzzz....(P) | When Matilda came down with yellow fever, she was treated by French doctors, who prescribed lots of sleep, rest, and fresh air. Matilda eventually got better. | Thus, Matilda discovered that bleeding the victims was not the way to go. After many persuasions, Mattie finally convinced Eliza not to bleed the twins and Nell.

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  • Title: Fever 1793--A-Z Terms
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