On The Chronicles of Narnia
It's the Little Things
By Susan Vaught
Permit me to remind you that a very small size has been bestowed on us Mice, and if we did not guard our dignity, some (who weigh worth by inches) would allow themselves very unsuitable pleasantries at our expense.
Reepicheep the High Mouse offers these words to Aslan in Prince Caspian.
Stop picking on him and his fellow soldier-mice just because they’re little guys. If you judge their worth by inches alone, you’ll pay a wicked price.
As one of the fiercest and most influential warriors of Old Nar-nia–and okay, okay, one of the tiniest–Reepicheep knows that mice and children must always guard their dignity because older, bigger creatures use age and size as an excuse to dismiss the intelligence, skill, and usefulness of smaller creatures. Villains and heroes alike make that error all through the Chronicles of Narnia, especially in Prince Caspian, and it’s–excuse the pun–a big mistake.
Too bad King Miraz didn’t learn that lesson sooner. If the usurper king hadn’t dismissed creatures smaller than him, he might have remained in power. Even worse, stars like Prince Caspian, High King Peter, and Lucy almost cost themselves their goals and their lives–and almost ruin Narnia’s future–by doing the same thing.
All of these characters fail to grasp that smaller beings like children aren’t weak simply because of their size. They aren’t less worthy or less clever just because they’re little or young, and they’re definitely not less important in the battle for the soul of Narnia itself. In fact, …