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You are watching: How old are jem and scout when the novel begins


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The answer to this question can be confusing because the very an initial line that the novel is, "When he was almost thirteen, my brother got his eight badly broken at the elbow" (3). Hence, one could argue that Jem is thirteen years old at the start of the story, but...


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The answer to this question can be confusing due to the fact that the very very first line that the novel is, "When the was nearly thirteen, mine brother got his eight badly damaged at the elbow" (3). Hence, one might argue the Jem is thirteen years old at the beginning of the story, however this can be merely a maker which foreshadows what happens to Jem as revealed in ~ the end of the book. After discussing Jem"s broken elbow, Scout climate jumps as much as she have the right to go to offer the leader the history of the Finch name in Maycomb County. It"s almost like she starts v the finish of the story and also then diverts the fist of the reader back to wherein the story really begins.

After mentioning her ancestor Simon Finch, Scout brings the reader up to date by explicate Atticus"s life, Finch"s Landing, and also their chef Calpurnia. Then she mentions that their mother died when Scout was two, i m sorry would have actually made Jem 6 at the time of she death. The is the finish of the Finch history lesson and where the story begins:

"When ns was practically six and also Jem was nearly ten, ours summertime borders (within calling distance of Calpurnia) were Mrs. Henry Lafayette Dubose"s residence two doors to the north of us, and also the Radley place three doors to the south" (6).

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The timeline proceeds from this point forward, so numerous would think the Jem is nine, nearly ten, at the start of the book, even though 2 other ages were disputed previous come this key paragraph. It is indigenous this point on that a existing time duration is created as Jem and Scout accomplish Dill, and an uninterrupted narration adheres to chronologically thereafter. Therefore, Jem is stated to have had actually a damaged arm at period thirteen in the opening line of the book, and he is then pointed out to be four years older 보다 Scout as soon as their mom dies once she is two years old, but the complete narration that the story, other than background information, starts v Jem being nine (almost ten) year old.