Lord of the Flies
Wisdom and Knowledge Quotes
How we cite our quotes:
Piggy drew up his legs.
“You all right, Piggy?”
“I thought they wanted the conch.”
“They didn’t take the conch.”
“I know. They didn’t come for the conch. They came for something else. Ralph – what am I going to do?”
Far off along the bowstave of the beach, three figures trotted toward the castle rock […]. The chief led them, trotting steadily, exulting in his achievement. He was a chief now in truth; and he made stabbing motions with his spear. From his left hand dangled Piggy’s broken glasses. (10.296-302)
Piggy’s glasses have become the most powerful item on the island. It is interesting that Piggy initially thinks of the conch; to him, order and law are more valuable than anything else.
He tried to remember.
“Smoke,” he said, “we want smoke.”
He turned on the twins fiercely.
“I said ‘smoke’! We’ve got to have smoke.”
There was silence, except for the multitudinous murmur of the bees. At last Piggy spoke, kindly.
“’Course we have. ’Cos the smoke’s a signal and we can’t be rescued if we don’t have smoke.”
“I knew that!” Shouted Ralph. He pulled his arm away from Piggy. “Are you suggesting–?” (11.73-78)
Ralph’s ability to think falls victim to the chaos of the island. Only Piggy remains a pillar of reason. So you can imagine what it means when Piggy later gets smashed on the rocks.
“Ralph – remember what we came for. The fire. My specs.” (11.159)
While Ralph gets caught up in the heat of the moment, Piggy is able to ground him in reason.