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Patrick McCarthy <[log in to unmask]>
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Charles Dickens Forum <[log in to unmask]>
Thu, 11 Jul 2013 18:54:50 -0700
TEXT/PLAIN (48 lines)
Friends of the Dickens Forum,

	The query of Goldie Morgantaler has drawn four more responses
from our fellow Dickns-ellers.  Here they are in an order that, we think,
gets closer to the meaning:				(pjm)

A) Mark Harris

Wouldn't it mean that he was a boy of low social standing in relation to
the other boys? That's how I would take it.

Mark R. Harris

Mark R. Harris
Profesor de humanidades
Tecnologico de Monterrey, Campus Sinaloa
Blvd. Pedro Infante 3773
Culiacan, CP 80100, Sinaloa, Mexico
+52 (667) 759-1600
[log in to unmask]
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B)  Curious Mike <[log in to unmask]>

I always thought "low boy" to mean someone at the bottom of the totem
pole or pecking order in the form; one who was the object of jokes,
ridicule and hard usage by higher ups.  Bluff, gallant, big and strong
Lawrence Boythorn, it seems to me, would  naturally be drawn to help and
protect such a "low boy."

C) Graham Smith <[log in to unmask]>:

I was not an English public school boy, but I think that the answer is that
Jarndyce was in a lower or junior form in relation to his protector and so
it has nothing to do with academic ability but simply position in relation
to age. Grahame Smith (Emeritus Stirling)

D) George Newlin <gcnewlin@verizon>

A "low boy" was a "fag," obliged to serve higher boys in the pecking
order. Often this meant drudgery, but sometimes a "high boy" would
exercise his fiefdom with  benign "protection," which would entail
protecting the lower (younger) boys from abuse and exploitation.