Winter Will Be Here Soon -- Study hard as finals approach...


 
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The Devil and Daniel Webster

 

The Devil and Daniel Webster, written in 1937, is the story
of a man who sells his soul to the Devil in exchange for
some good luck. The man, Jabez Stone is a farmer living in
New Hampshire, who has chronic bad luck with his farm and
his family. One morning he broke his plow on a rock and
that was the last straw. He said, "I vow, I vow it's enough
to make a man want to sell his soul to the Devil and I
would, too, for two cents!" Sure enough, the next day the
Devil arrived at his farm with an offer.
 
Jabez Stone promises his soul to the Devil after a period
of seven years. In this time he cows became fat and his
horses sleek, and his crops were the envy of the
neighborhood. Jabez Stone became one of the most prosperous
men in the country. There was tlak of him running for State
Senate and even Governor. The rest of the Stone family
became "as contented as cats in a dairy." Once a year the
Devil would return to check on Jabez Stone. On the day of
his 6th visit, it was time to discuss the contract. Jabez
Stone managed to get it extended for a perios of three more
years. The next four years were the fastest of Jabez
Stone's life. In the final months before his contract
expired again, Stone sought out the most powerful man
around, a lawyer name Daniel Webster. Webster's cases were
usually fought in the Supreme Court, but since Jabez Stone
was an old nieghbor, Webster had a soft spot in his heart
and agreed to take the case against the Devil. The Devil
selected an impossible jury, and Webster thought that all
hope was lost. In the end, Webster was able to convince the
jury that they were all human just like Jabez Stone, and
therefore, the jury ruled in favor of Jabez Stone. The
Devil was never allowed in New Hampshire again.
 
The historical aspects of this story are scattered
throughout. When Jabez Stone approached Daniel Webster, he
was busy working up speeches to make against John C.
Calhoun. When Webster accused the Devil of being a
foreigner his argument was: "When the first wrong was done
to the first Indian, I was there. when the first slaverput
out for te Congo, I stood on her deck." This shows the
Devil/evils in the roots of America. also many historical
figures were on the jury: Walter Butler, King Philip
 

 




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