doubtful yet doleful at every lull

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Senior Member
The quotation comes from Jane Eyre Chapter 25

Quotation: I came into this room, and the sight of the empty chair and fireless hearth chilled me. For some time after I went to bed, I could not sleep—a sense of anxious excitement distressed me. The gale still rising, seemed to my ear to muffle a mournful under-sound; whether in the house or abroad I could not at first tell, but it recurred, doubtful yet doleful at every lull; at last I made out it must be some dog howling at a distance. I was glad when it ceased.
Hi everyone! I don't understand the bold part. I try to interpret the part as below. Is it correct?

lull => a temporary calm or stillness
doleful => full of sorrow, sadness, grief;
doubtful => 1.1 Of things: Involved in doubt or uncertainty; uncertain, undecided; indistinct, ambiguous.
yet => but

the sentence => But at ever temporary stillness (i.e., whenever the wind ceased), the under-sound recurred; it (=the under-sound) was incapable of being decided/determined but it was full of sorrow.

EDITED: I've changed my mind and made an alteration to my interpretation.
Last edited:
  • PaulQ

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Yes, you have the idea:

    But whenever the wind dropped in strength, the under-sound could be heard; it was not possible to decide/determine what it (=the under-sound) was or what might be causing it but it was full of sorrow.
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