Henry Lawson

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In the short story ‘The loaded dog’ the plot concerns 3 gold miners and their dog, and the farcical consequences of leaving a bomb cartridge unattended. Henry Lawson shows language features such as adjectives, verbs, and dialogue, metaphors, similes, humour and graphic descriptions. This story is written in third person. The language used is colloquial and idiomatic, for example when he uses the line ‘your dorg’s run orf inter the srub’.

Some examples of adjectives he uses in the short story are, ‘They used the old-fashioned blasting powder and time fuse. They'd make a sausage or cartridge of blasting-powder in a skin of strong calico or canvas, the mouth sewn and bound round the end of the fuse; they'd dip the cartridge in melted tallow to make it water-tight, get the drill hole as dry as possible, drop in the cartridge with some dry dust, and wad and ram with stiff clay and broken brick’ this is a description of how they make their bomb try and get rid of the solid rock when they gold mine. This little extract from the story shows adjectives which create a strong visual image for the reader so they really understand what’s going on in the story and get an image in their mine.

Another example for an extremely strong visual image is when he describes the retriever. He uses similes for example, ‘his tale swung around like a huge stock whip’ and he describes the dog in such a way that you can picture him in your mind and you feel as if you know him.

He uses the technique alliteration to develop atmosphere, for example when he uses the line ‘sniff suspiciously in the sickly smothering atmosphere of the summer sunrise’ this intrigues the reader. He also uses euphemisms such as ‘colourful fool’ and ‘blanky retriever’ and similes such as ‘like a flea in a fit’ this helps the reader understand what the writer is trying to describe more and also gives a strong visual image.

Henry tends to focus on the plot and doesn’t moralise this story, he uses humour all...
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