Does Anyone Have A Summary Of The Story The Devil And Daniel Webster?


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Julii Brainard Profile
Julii Brainard answered
Daniel Webster was a real person, an American lawyer and politician who lived 1782-1852.

An American author called Stephen Vincent Benét wrote a short story (complete fiction) about the Devil and Daniel Webster, published in 1937.

The plot line is that a New Hampshire farmer, Jabez Stone has a string of very bad luck. He swears out loud that he may as well sell his soul to the Devil, so naturally the Devil turns up. Stone bargains his soul for better luck, but after ten years the Devil comes for payment. Stone hires Daniel Webster to negotiate with the Devil (otherwise called "Mr Scratch").

Webster and Scratch argue a while, finally agree that as good Americans they should settle it in court. Scratch makes sure that the jury is made up of dead American evil-doers.

Webster is provoked badly during the trial and nearly goes into a tirade about the unfairness of it all, when he realises that this is exactly the Devils' plan; Webster's soul is also at stake. So instead Webster gives a speech about all that is good about America, in spite of her many mistakes. This convinces the jury to find for Jabez Stone, after all.

Webster literally twists the Devil's arm behind his back and gets Scratch to promise never to bother Jabez Stone, again.

The story is about patriotism and American pragmatism and resourcefulness.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
What does patriarch of the family and the mastiff when you visited the zoo have to do with the book The Devil and Daniel webster

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