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The Great Fire Themes & Characters

This Study Guide consists of approximately 13 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Great Fire.
This section contains 970 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Great Fire Short Guide

The Great Fire is populated by a multitude of figures, most of them representative of the experiences of their parts of the city, and each offers a fresh view of a tragedy that engulfed a hundred thousand people.

Although many dignitaries were involved in the story of the Great Fire, the O'Learys are probably now the most familiar of the historical figures, due to the story of their cow's accidental ignition of the blaze. Murphy rejects this explanation, citing eyewitness testimony that Catherine O'Leary could not have been in the barn at the time it ignited.

The fire began as a small one, involving less than a block of the city. A series of blunders and bad luck turned the fire into an uncontrollable blaze. Murphy interestingly mirrors the spread of the fire in his prose. When the fire first is only a small blaze, he confines...

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This section contains 970 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Great Fire Short Guide
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