"lying like Ophelia in the play, with 'virgin crants and maiden strewments"
Ophelia, John William Waterhouse, 1894
Public DomainOphelia, John William Waterhouse, 1894 - Credit: wikimedia commons

 Ophelia is a character from Shakespeare’s Hamlet. This line is spoken by the priest, describing her dead body laid out with garlands (crants) and strewn flowers (strewments) at her funeral.

Draped with wreaths of white garlic flowers and laid out on the bed, suffering from an unknown illness that severely weakens her, Lucy compares herself to a garlanded corpse. Before Ophelia died she had also gone mad; perhaps Lucy feels as if she too is losing her sanity in the face of the strange events and effects of her illness.



Her obsequies have been as far enlarged
As we have warranty: her death was doubtful;
And, but that great command o'ersways the order,
She should in ground unsanctified have lodged
Till the last trumpet: for charitable prayers,
Shards, flints and pebbles should be thrown on her;
Yet here she is allow'd her virgin crants,
Her maiden strewments and the bringing home
Of bell and burial.

Act V, Scene 1