In episode 5, Olivia reprimands Nell for scribbling this line on the wall. Later in the series, we see Olivia writing this line (in Nell's visions).

Did the ghosts write this line? Or did Olivia's ghost write it after death and since time being non-linear for Nell, she was able to see that back in her childhood.

  • I assumed it was Olivia's ghost, although I'm not sure it was ever explicitly said.
    – Steve-O
    Nov 24, 2018 at 16:24

2 Answers 2


I believe it is not only for Nell that time is non-linear, we just have a more obvious scene with her (bent-neck lady), so it could have been Olivia who wrote it when she was alive (and going crazy), hence why she doesn't remember, and since time is also non-linear for her, she knew Nell would be coming home years later.

Of course this prop is not meant to have a clear sense but to give a twist in the series for the viewers, i wouldn't try to find more meaningful explanation other than the producers wanted another element of twist related to the time being non-linear in this house.


It's shown in episode 5 bent neck lady the mother writes it when older nell visits the hill house just before she dies

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