Could you tell me the word meaning from THE STALLED OX?

Some minutes later the ox, awakening probably to the suspicion that oil cake and chopped mangold was waiting for it in some appointed byre, stepped with much precaution out of the morning-room, stared with grave inquiry at the no longer obtrusive and pea-stick-throwing human, and then lumbered heavily but swiftly out of the garden. Eshley packed up his tools and followed the animal's example and "Larkdene" was left to neuralgia and the cook.

What is "Larkdene"?

  • 1
    I believe "Larkdene" is the name of the villa the ox invades. A word being capitalized is a clue that it is a name of something. After the ox and the painter leave, the only person left in the house is the cook, because Adele has already stormed off and earlier in the story Adele says "the housemaid is having her afternoon out and the cook is lying down with an attack of neuralgia". Do you understand what "left to" means if we say "and the house was left to neuralgia and the cook" ?
    – ColleenV
    Nov 22, 2016 at 14:51
  • "Dene" is an archaic English word for a wooded valley. A home in a dene in which larks are common might be named "Larkdene", which I imagine is Saki's intention here. (In fact, there is more than one place and residence named "Larkdene" in Britain.) Nov 22, 2016 at 23:12

1 Answer 1


According to thefreedictionary.com

dene (diːn) or dean


(Physical Geography) Brit a valley, esp one that is narrow and wooded

Lark is a well-known bird. The whole word would have the meaning of a romantic place where larks sing their songs and it is the name of this house.

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