Year of Wonders


Geraldine Brooks

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Aisha is Mrs. Bradford’s illegitimate daughter, whom Anna adopts and takes away from Eyam because her life is in danger as long as she stays there. Her name means both “life” and “bread,” in Arabic, showing how she “sustained” Anna during a difficult time and helped her recover from the traumatic experience of the plague.

Aisha Quotes in Year of Wonders

The Year of Wonders quotes below are all either spoken by Aisha or refer to Aisha. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Community and Convention Theme Icon
Part 3: Apple-Picking Time Quotes

This little girl seemed to me, at that moment, answer enough to all my questions. To have saved this small, singular one – this alone seemed reason enough that I lived. I knew then that this was how I was meant to go on: away from death and toward life, from birth to birth, from seed to blossom, living my life amongst wonders.

Related Characters: Anna Frith (speaker), Aisha
Related Symbols: Childbirth
Page Number: 286
Explanation and Analysis:

As hard as I willed it, I could not draw up anything to follow: no formal supplication, no Bible verse, no scrap of liturgy. All of the texts and Psalms and orisons I had by rote were gone from me, erased, as surely as hard-learned words written with painful effort onto a slate can be licked away with the lazy swipe of a dampened rag.

Related Characters: Anna Frith (speaker), Elizabeth Bradford , Aisha
Page Number: 289
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire Year of Wonders LitChart as a printable PDF.
Year of Wonders PDF

Aisha Character Timeline in Year of Wonders

The timeline below shows where the character Aisha appears in Year of Wonders. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Part 3: Apple-Picking Time
Female Sexuality and Friendship Theme Icon
Faith, Suffering, and God’s Will Theme Icon
Contrary to everyone’s expectations, Mrs. Bradford delivers the baby safely and stops bleeding. Looking in the baby’s eyes, Anna knows that this work is... (full context)
Community and Convention Theme Icon
Justice and Judgment Theme Icon
...turns back to the kitchen for a cloak, she finds Elizabeth about to drown the baby in a bucket. Anna knocks her out of the way, and rubs her until she... (full context)
Community and Convention Theme Icon
Elizabeth tries to justify herself, saying that the baby is illegitimate and she has to kill it so that Mrs. Bradford can retain the... (full context)
Faith, Suffering, and God’s Will Theme Icon
Science and Superstition Theme Icon
Anna volunteers to adopt the baby. When Elizabeth is reluctant, she says she will move far away from Eyam, where the... (full context)
Female Sexuality and Friendship Theme Icon
...returns upstairs to inform Mrs. Bradford of the plan. Mrs. Bradford is grateful that the baby’s life will be spared; she asks Anna to tell her daughter that she would have... (full context)
Female Sexuality and Friendship Theme Icon Elinor’s family estate, where she can find a job. Anna rides away with the baby, briefly waving to Mompellion as she goes. (full context)
Epilogue: The Waves, Like Ridges of Plow’d Land
Female Sexuality and Friendship Theme Icon
...a Liverpool inn and wonders what she should do to provide for herself and the baby. Eventually, the innkeeper informs her that an unsavory man has been asking questions about her... (full context)
Female Sexuality and Friendship Theme Icon
Anna names the Bradford baby Aisha, the Arabic word for both “bread” and “life.” She walks down to the women’s... (full context)