in Three Clerks

Chapter 36 – Mrs. Val’s New Carriage

Mrs. Val patronizing Gertrude

See the gloss for “patronized by Mrs. Val” in Chapter 33. [GZ 2016]



As Gertrude, Mrs. Val, and company discuss Alaric’s desire to run for office, Ugolina says that Sir Gregory Hardlines “had put his veto” on Alaric’s participation in the election. In ancient Rome the veto was a special power of the tribune of the plebs to prevent an abuse of power by any other elected official. The association of Sir Gregory’s opinion with the inviolable power of the tribune of the plebs suggests that Sir Gregory will have his way and that Alaric will not run for office. Additionally it reinforces the strong and positive imagery that readers have likely come to associate with Sir Gregory. [GZ 2016]