Setting in The Monkey's Paw

Setting Examples in The Monkey's Paw:

I. 1

"of all the beastly, slushy, out-of-the-way places to live in..."   (I.)

Mr. White’s outburst shows both his dissatisfaction with his current situation and sets the stage for a desolate encounter with horror. Because of the family’s isolation, they are beyond easy reach of help in case of any emergencies—now a classic horror trope.

"In the brightness of the wintry sun next morning as it streamed over the breakfast table he laughed at his fears. ..."   (II.)

The day outside is beautiful in contrast to the stormy weather of last night. In the light of day, the paw’s power seems nonexistent. The tone is now one of lightness rather than the ominous atmosphere of the previous day. At this point, the paw and its magic hold no sway over the Whites’ home.

"a house steeped in shadow and silence...."   (III.)

Like the previous two parts, the house’s atmosphere is described in the first sentence. With Herbert gone—the Whites’ only child and the source of much of their happiness—there is no joy left for them to come home to. This sets the tone for the rest of the section: unhappy and dark.