He needs the stronger whiskey as a crutch. He too has in a cold-hearted manner most likely ended his marriage to Mary. Something that the reader suspects is based on her gender. In the story, Mary asks the detectives to eat the leg of lamb she had made for her husband, and even when they turn it down, she insists that they eat this. While he does fight her making him dinner with anger, he is still continuing to stay and talk with her while she essentially goes into a frenzy about her beloved husband.
This helps the reader to understand the disorientation and detachment of Mary. Later, Dahl also used it in the title of his short story. Patrick is a police detective. So while she is in shock she goes down stairs to get the leg of lamb from the freezer and when she gets back up stairs, there he is with his back turned to her and she betrays him just as he did to her when she least expects it. Patrick Maloney, however, could also be recognized as being unaware, if not innocent, to a demise. He tells her the news—the reader does not know exactly what he tells her—that leaves Mrs.
At times, such as the end of the story, this means that the reader knows more than the other characters, especially in relation to the leg of lamb. After telling his devoted wife the bad news, he continues on. Mary at no stage in the story fights Patrick or anybody else. Lambs have been used for thousands of years as a symbol of innocence, meekness, and purity. Mary Maloney could represent the lamb in the sense that even after her husband told her some seemingly terrible news, she continued on being a gentle and caring wife by trying to make dinner for him as though nothing is wrong. Yet Mary herself does not need anything.
For instance, you should be able to pick out a wolf dressed in sheep's clothing from the rest of the flock fairly easily, but if you ignore the obvious and accept the wolf as a sheep because it looks white and fluffy, you've been duped - just like the detectives investigating the death of Patrick Maloney. Of course, such a thing would've never crossed Mary's mind if she hadn't completely lost it for a second. Usually, when people employ this colorful colloquialism, they mean to say that someone has taken on the appearance, habits, or other characteristics of a group in order to infiltrate it. Almost 60 years later, Roald Dahl wrote Lamb To The Slaughter, set in Great Britain, where a woman kills her husband and hide the evidences cleverly. From the way the situations of the characters change them to the decisions they make, everything in this story must work together to create a masterpiece. She has fooled the police. This makes the story more ambiguous in morality by making the reader associate with the woman more.
The way this phrase is usually used in literature since antiquity is to describe situations in which people are being sent to their doom unknowingly - sort of the way things would've been for her had Mary not taken matters into her own hands. The first clear meaning is one that is a form of dark humor. Mary is a very unique complex character and she has, through her actions conducted a devious crime in which she will be proven innocent. The motherly instinct of protection is invoked by this understanding as anyone can understand the instinct of a mother protecting her child and the fear of execution is vital to making Mary a more positive character. She knows what she is doing and what she has to do in order for others to not consider her to be a suspect. Really, even Mary is initially mistaken about her own identity, as well as Patrick's. This lamb symbolizes Jeremiah, who grew up among his townsmen never suspecting that one day he would be killed.
She might just as well have hit him with a steel club. Covering up the murder primarily for the sake of her child, Mary calls the police, maintaining a façade of innocence and manipulating the policemen to inadvertently commit a betrayal of their own. At the beginning of the story, food is closely linked to domesticity and marriage. This theme also comes up again possibly as one of the reasons why Mary kills Patrick. She is able to convince the police to take pity on her, to mix her a drink and then to even eat the evidence, the leg of lamb that she has left in the oven.
It is also noticeable that Mary with calmness kills Patrick as this too would play on the theme of acceptance. Which may mirror how Patrick has treated Mary. But what's so funny about that? Maloney is in great shock, to a state that she kills her husband, with a frozen leg of lamb. She then asked him if he wanted supper but he said no. Unless she needs to be. Throughout the entire story, Mary is a very interesting character. Mary could well be the primary wolf in question, since she's literally able to get away with murder.
Any evidence that Mary may be the guilty party is being eaten. He needs to numb himself of feeling. Overall, people use this phrase for innocent persons who do not know what dangers might lie ahead. In this waiting period, she tidies up his house, prepares his food, and periodically glances at the clock until he arrives. Lesson Summary ' Lamb to the Slaughter' is a short story by Roald Dahl of the murder of Patrick Maloney by his wife Mary after he surprisingly announces his intention to leave her. Mary's sudden murderous action shatters. Her day revolves around Patrick arriving home having some drinks and making sure dinner is ready for him.
Her quick thinking and manipulative character results in the police officers eathign the evidence and therefore she cannot be charged of this crime. At the level of popular psychology, Dahl makes it clear through his description of the Maloney household that Mary has internalized the bourgeois, or middle class, ideal of a young mid-twentieth-century housewife, maintaining a tidy home and catering to her husband; pouring drinks when the man finishes his day is a gesture that comes from movies and magazines of the day. The classroom was warm and clean, the curtains drawn, the two burnt out flourescent lamps replaced—hers and the one by the empty chair opposite. Also important is the understanding that Mary is likely to have an escape of being arrested for the crime. Theme in 'Lamb to the Slaughter' The main theme in 'Lamb to the Slaughter' is concerned with how we overlook the true nature of a person or situation when we allow preconceived notions to cloud our judgment. The two enjoy a before dinner cocktail.