The Lifted Veil Essay

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The "veil" in George Eliot's novella "The Lifted Veil" symbolizes the boundary between the natural world and the world of the supernatural, which in this story includes the realm of the spirit and of death. The words "shroud" or "curtain" also appear throughout the story as references to the image of the "veil." Latimer's powers of clairvoyance, his ability to both see into the future and hear the internal thoughts of people around him, is described in terms of his ability to see beyond the "veil" which separates the natural world from that of the spirit world. While these powers of clairvoyance would seem to be a gift, Latimer experiences them as a "curse," which drains life of all pleasure, bringing him only misery and suffering.

The "veil" or "curtain" which separates human beings with ordinary powers of perception from foreknowledge of the future is lifted for Latimer...

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This section contains 734 words
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The Lifted Veil from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.