dirty winding-sheets, as if in remembrance of a host of hanged clients.

Category: Things | Type: Historical | Title: Great Expectations (in Context) | Author: Charles Dickens | Ch: Chapter XLVIII

A winding-sheet is the shroud or sheet in which a corpse is wrapped for burial. Applied to a candle, the winding-sheet is the solidified drippings of tallow that have formed and hardened along the sides, resembling the folds of a corpse's winding-sheet. The appearance for some foretold a death; Dickens reverses it and makes the winding-sheet a memorial to the various hangings. 

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