Like any other rebel slave, I felt resolved, in my desperation, to go all lengths.
“Hold her arms, Miss Abbot: she’s like a mad cat.”
“For shame! for shame!” cried the lady’s-maid. “What shocking conduct, Miss Eyre, to strike a young gentleman, your benefactress’s son! Your young master.”
“Master! How is he my master? Am I a servant?”
“No; you are less than a servant, for you do nothing for your keep.”
– Charlotte Bronte
Jane Eyre, Chapter 2. As Bessie and Miss Abbot drag Jane to the red room, her prison, she sees herself “like any other rebel slave” (simile) and fights her captors. On Mrs. Reed’s orders, they imprison Jane in the room for retaliating after her cousin John Reed throws a book at her and attacks her. The red room is the death chamber where her late Uncle Reed died. In this exchange the cruel maid Miss Abbot tells Jane that she is less than a servant. A second simile is used in this passage by nursemaid Bessie to compare Jane to a “mad cat.”