Key Quotes for Mr Hyde


“He is not easy to describe. There is something wrong with his appearance; something displeasing, something downright detestable. I never saw a man I so disliked, and yet I scarce know why.”

Enfield about Hyde, Chapter 1.

Explanation

Enfield is asked by Utterson to relay the events of the night before where he watched Hyde trample a little girl. Enfield, although a man of intellect, finds it hard to articulate why he found Hyde “detestable”, which adds mystery around the strange character of Mr Hyde. It is almost as though words fail our good Mr Enfield, but a gut instinct picks up instead in sensing the malice of Mr Hyde. Alternatively, as per the social expectation of gentlemen, he may want to avoid discussing the situation further, as to not become emotionally involved in it.

 

“…staring with injected eyes, gasping with open mouth…”

Lanyon about Hyde transforming into Jekyll, Chapter 9.

Explanation

The use of very vivid, almost animalistic imagery portrays the transformation of Hyde as primitive, and perhaps a little alien to Lanyon. The image created makes Hyde seem almost wolf-like, which certainly adds to the vicious, non-human aura. “Gasping with open mouth” could also imply that the transformation is physically taxing and actually very painful, as this could be viewed as a sign of Mr Hyde being in extreme physical pain, in addition to the mental suffering both Jekyll and Hyde experience from being the same person.

 

“…I learned to recognise the thorough and primitive duality of man;” Jekyll about Hyde,

Chapter 10.

Explanation

Jekyll recognises how completely different he is to Hyde, and although he was completely ashamed about his vices, he can recognise that his creation is on a new playing field of evil. When referring to “duality of man” he could be easily be addressing the issues with Hyde, which from Jekyll’s perspective would be the “primitive” nature of his character. However, Jekyll forgets that although Hyde is evil, he is also a product of Jekyll’s greed and an intelligent one at that. Hyde is aware of the consequences of his actions and hides within Jekyll in order to avoid said consequences. He may not be as primitive as Jekyll would love to believe.

 

“You must suffer me to go my own dark way.”

Dr Jekyll talking to Utterson, Chapter 6.

Explanation

Jekyll is able to recognise that some darkness belongs within him, which he’s very ashamed of. This is depicted by Jekyll saying “You must suffer me…” the use of “suffer” in this dialogue depicts an awareness within Jekyll as well as some foreshadowing. He is aware that his creation, and the consequences of his actions are likely to cause suffering to a variety of people, himself included. Furthermore, the terminology of “my own dark way” rings slightly foreboding, as if to foreshadow that Jekyll/Hyde will commit suicide, which is a dark way to go.