Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The Simms Review (Vol 11: No 2) >> Explanatory Notes to Simms's Tales of the South >> Page 24

image of pageExplore Inside

Page 24

Secondary Scholarship | 2003
Transcription 266.13 "intrust": Simms is punning with two meanings for the word:
"interest" and "entrust."

267.17.8 "I'm a holy mortar and a sinner not to be saved by salting, though
you puts the petre with the salt": Salt "saves" meet through curing. Salt also
related here to saltpetre, a nitrogen salt used variously in gunpowder and as
diminisher of sexual desire. "mortar," Sharp' dialect for "mortal," brings to
mind the many large ...guns used by the invaders in blasting Charleston
during the War for Southern independence. One such gun was called the
Swamp ..., a "holy mortar" indeed! The sexual suggestiveness of phallos in
"...mortar" and "petre" befits Sharp's desire for a wife. Sharps seems to be
saying his desire for Merry Ann won't be cured by a dose of saltpetre, or
perheps even death. T.S.K.

269.15 "tip toe fine": "tiptop fine" (tiptoe nice) with a sarcastic implication
of "tiptoe fine" (straining upwards).

270.17 "four closures": "foreclosure."

270.26 "bonnie fodder": This is a malapropism of "bonna fide," but it also
means "bonny fodder," i.e. healthy and fine looking Indian corn plant used as
food for horses.

273.39 "I didn't stop at my figgers": See what Sam says about the number of
his children.

274.14 "gould half eagles": A gold half eagle is a U.S. gold coin worth five
dollars.

274.22 "hypercritical": "hypocritical" and "hyper-critical."

277.23-4 "hop the twig": "to run away from one's creditors, as a bird eludes
a fowler, or to depart suddenly."

277.25 "profits": An eye malapropism of "prophets" with the irony on
capitalism.




24