Significant Civil Shift In Tom's Life

422 Words2 Pages
Being bought by Legree marked a significant civil turning point in Tom’s life because he experienced a remarkable shift in Tom’s masters’ moral treatment toward him.. For example, before Tom was bought by Legree he was under the ownership of Mr. Shelby and St. Clare. Both characters treated Tom kindly and with trust. Mr. Shelby displays his trust for Tom by letting, “him go to Cincinnati, to do business… and bring home five hundred dollars,” (Stowe, 1852, p. 43). Master Shelby also says, “I’ve trusted him, since then, with everything I have, - money, house, horses, - and let him come and go round the country; and I always found him true and square in everything,” (Stowe, 1852, p. 42). Mr. Shelby trusted Tom with his whole heart and was convinced that he was a…show more content…
Secondly, Tom experienced a dramatic shift in his relationship with his masters through respect. Previously, Mr. Shelby and St. Clare had both respected Tom in that they treated Tom as a family member and allowed him to contact his family. Tom lived with his family at Shelby’s and wrote a letter to Aunt Chloe, his wife, with Eva from St. Clare’s. After Tom was bought by Legree, there was no respect as Legree physically abused Tom and asked him to defy his moral beliefs and to “take this yer gal and flog her,” (Stowe, 1852, p. 507). This shows how being bought by Legree served as a significant moral turning point in Tom’s life by changing the respect he received from his masters. Lastly, Tom’s terms and rules for religion changed after being bought by Legree. At Shelby’s and St. Clare’s homes, Tom was always practicing Christianity and was often looked up to as a pastor-like figure by the other slaves. However, Mr. Legree would, “have none o’ yer bawling, praying, singing niggers on my place; so remember… I’m your church
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