Charles Dickens The Signalman Pdf !EXCLUSIVE!
The railway signal-man of the title tells the narrator of an apparition that has been haunting him. Each spectral appearance precedes a tragic event on the railway on which the signalman works. The signalman's work is at a signal-box in a deep cutting near a tunnel entrance on a lonely stretch of the railway line, and he controls the movements of passing trains. When there is danger, his fellow signalmen alert him by telegraph and alarms. Three times, he receives phantom warnings of danger when his bell rings in a fashion that only he can hear. Each warning is followed by the appearance of the spectre, and then by a terrible accident.
charles dickens the signalman pdf
The first accident involves a terrible collision between two trains in the tunnel. Dickens may have based this incident on the Clayton Tunnel crash that occurred in 1861, five years before he wrote the story. Readers in 1866 would have been familiar with this major disaster. The second warning involves the mysterious death of a young woman on a passing train. The final warning is a premonition of the signalman's own death.
The story begins with the narrator calling "Halloa! Below there!" into a railway cutting. The signalman standing on the railway below does not look up, as the narrator expects, but rather turns about and stares into the railway tunnel that is his responsibility to monitor. The narrator calls down again and asks permission to descend. The signalman seems reluctant.
The railway hole is a cold, gloomy, and lonely place. The signalman still seems to be in fear of the narrator, who tries to put him at ease. The signalman feels that he had seen the narrator before, but the narrator assures him that this is impossible. Reassured, the signalman welcomes the newcomer into his little cabin, and the two men speak of the signalman's work. His labour consists of a dull monotonous routine, but the signalman feels he deserves nothing better, as he wasted his academic opportunities when he was young, although he has been spending his time during his shifts teaching himself mathematics and learning a foreign language (albeit with questionable pronunciation). The narrator describes that the signalman seems like a dutiful employee at all times, except when he twice looks at his signal bell when it is not ringing. There seems to be something troubling the signalman, but he will not speak of it. Before the narrator leaves, the signalman asks of him not to call for him when he's back on the top of the hill or when he sees him the following day.
The next day, as directed by the signalman, the narrator returns and does not call. The signalman tells the narrator that he will reveal his troubles. He is haunted by a recurring spirit which he has seen at the entrance to the tunnel on separate occasions, and, with each appearance, was followed by a tragedy. In the first instance, the signalman heard the same words which the narrator said and saw a figure with its left arm across its face, while waving the other in desperate warning; he questioned it, but it vanished. He then ran into the tunnel, but found no-one; a few hours later, there was a terrible train crash with many casualties. During its second appearance, the figure was silent, with both hands before the face in an attitude of mourning; then, a beautiful young woman died in a train passing through. Finally, the signalman admits that he has seen the spectre several times during the past week.
The narrator is sceptical about the supernatural, and suggests that the signalman is suffering from hallucinations. During their conversation, the signalman witnesses a ghost and hears his bell ring eerily, but the narrator sees and hears nothing. The signalman is sure that these supernatural incidents are presaging a third tragic event waiting to happen, and is sick with fear and frustration: he does not understand why he should be burdened with knowledge of an incipient tragedy when he, a minor railway functionary, has neither the authority nor the ability to prevent it. The narrator believes that his new friend's imagination has been overtaxed and suggests taking him to see a doctor.
In the story, the unnamed narrator befriends a railroad signalman at his lonely post outside a tunnel. The signalman confides that he is being haunted by a ghost. The apparition warned him on two previous occasions of impending tragedies; a horrible accident and a sudden death of a passenger. The specter has recently reappeared and the signalman is tormented by the thought that something terrible is about to happen. The narrator is concerned but skeptical. Soon, however, he learns the meaning of the third ghostly warning.
"Halloa! Below there!" the narrator shouts from the top of the railway cutting down at the signalman who is standing outside his box. Oddly, instead of looking up, the man turns and looks down the line. The narrator shouts again and the man finally looks up. The narrator asks if there is a path down to the bottom and the signalman hesitantly points to a spot a few hundred yards away. The narrator descends down the steep path notched out in the cliff. As he nears the bottom of the deep cutting, he sees the signalman waiting for him, standing between the rails and watching intently.
It is a dismal post between the jagged stone walls with only a strip of sky visible above. The narrow gorge stretches in one direction away from the post. On the other side of the post is a black tunnel. The narrator approaches the signalman, and the man takes a step back. The narrator attempts to start a conversation, but the man does not respond. He instead looks away at the red light near the tunnel's mouth. The narrator sees fear in the man's eyes and tries to put him at ease. The man says he thought he had seen the narrator before at the red light. The narrator assures him he has never been there before, and the man's manner finally clears. They begin to converse naturally about the signalman's duties and how he spends his time during the lonely hours between his tasks.
Inside the signal box, there is a desk and a telegraph machine with an electric bell attached to it. As they speak, the bell rings several times and the signalman reads the incoming messages and sends off replies. On one occasion, he goes outside to display a flag and deliver a message to the driver. The signalman is exact and vigilant in his duties and seems most capable and trustworthy. Twice, however, he looks at the bell when it has not rung. Each time, he looks outside towards the red light and comes back obviously disturbed. He would not say what is bothering him, but says he will try to explain if the narrator would visit him again. The narrator promises to return the following evening. The signalman asks him not to call out to him. Then he asks why the narrator yelled "Halloa! Below there!" earlier. The narrator tells him he only meant to get his attention and those particular words had no significance to him.
The following night, the signalman tells the narrator that he mistook him for someone else at first. He had heard the cry "Halloa! Below there!" before and seen a man at the red light. The man kept shouting "Look out!" while covering his face with his left arm and waving the other arm violently. The signalman demonstrates the gesture which appears to mean "For God's sake, clear the way!" The man then disappeared, and the signalman could not find him although he looked into the tunnel and all around the area. He telegraphed to see if anything was wrong, and was told all was well. Within six hours, however, a horrible accident occurred and the dead and the wounded were brought over to the spot where the figure had stood.
The signalman saw the apparition again several months after the accident. Unlike the first time, it was silent and covered its face with both hands in the gesture of mourning. Later that day, as a train exited the tunnel, the signalman saw through a carriage window some commotion inside. He signaled and stopped the train. They found a passenger, a beautiful young lady, had suddenly died.
Then the signalman explains what is troubling him now. He saw the specter again a week ago, and has seen it several times since. As it did the first time, it covers its face and waves emphatically while calling out "Below there! Look out! Look out!" The signalman says the ghost also rings the electric bell. He says it rang twice the previous evening. The narrator assures him that the bell did not ring, but the man insists he not only heard the strange ring but the ghost was there both times when he looked out.
The signalman's conscience is tortured by the burden of foreknowledge. He is sure something terrible is about to happen but, not knowing specifically what the danger is, he is unable to alert anyone. The man is so distressed that the narrator decides it would be best to try to calm him down rather than reason with him. He speaks to the man about his duty, emphasizing the importance of doing it well even though he may not understand the meaning of the ghostly warnings. His efforts are successful and the signalman regains his composure. The narrator offer to stay the whole night, but the man turns him down.
The next evening, the narrator goes out for a stroll. He looks down the cutting and is horrified to see a figure at the tunnel waving passionately and shielding its face. But the narrator quickly realizes that it is not an apparition but a man. There are others standing nearby. Sensing that something is wrong, the narrator goes down to inquire. The men tell him that the signalman was killed that morning. He was cut down by an engine as it came out of the tunnel. Inexplicably, he did not move out of the way but stood there with his back towards the oncoming train.
\"The Signal-Man\" is a story by Charles Dickens. The story begins with the narrator calling \"Halloa! Below there!\" into a railway cutting. The signalman standing on the railway below does not look up, as the narrator expects, but rather turns about and stares into the railway tunnel that is his responsibility to monitor. The narrator calls down again and asks permission to descend. The signalman seems reluctant. The railway hole is a cold, gloomy and lonely place. The signalman still seems to be in fear of the narrator, who tries to put him at ease. The signalman feels that he has seen the narrator before, but the narrator assures him that this is impossible. Reassured, the signalman welcomes the newcomer into his little cabin and the two men speak of the signalman's work. His labour consists of a dull, monotonous routine, but the signalman feels he deserves nothing better, as he wasted his academic opportunities when he was young. The narrator describes that the signalman seems like a dutiful employee at all times except when he twice looks at his signal bell when it is not ringing. There seems to be something troubling the signal man, but he will not speak of it. Before the narrator leaves, the signal man asks of him not to call for him when he's back on the top of the hill or when he sees him the following day. 350c69d7ab