ancestral rage


Senior Member
Persian- Iran
Hi everyone. The following text is from Flush by Virginia Woolf. I am not sure which meaning of "rage" is correct here. Flush= A dog.

Then with all her poet's imagination Miss Barrett could not divine what Wilson's wet umbrella meant to Flush; what memories it recalled, of forests and parrots and wild trumpeting elephants; nor did she know, when Mr. Kenyon stumbled over the bell-pull, that Flush heard dark men cursing in the mountains; the cry, "Span! Span!" rang in his ears, and it was in some muffled, ancestral rage that he bit him.

rage= 1. Violent uncontrollable anger. 2. in singular A vehement desire or passion.
In the surface the first meaning is right but considering the text I think the second might be correct too.
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  • Uncle Jack

    Senior Member
    British English
    It is the first meaning. Although the first meaning appears to incorporate the second, the main reason for having the second definition is because "rage" is used in such expressions as a "rage of jealousy" or a "rage of fear", which don't involve anger or violence.
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