I have some questions about a sentence from Chapter 42 of the novel Great Expectations.
Here is an excerpt:
“So fur as I could find, there warn’t a soul that see young Abel Magwitch, with us little on him as in him, but wot caught fright at him, and either drove him off, or took him up. I was took up, took up, took up, to that extent that I reg’larly grow’d up took up.
“This is the way it was, that when I was a ragged little creetur as much to be pitied as ever I see (not that I looked in the glass, for there warn’t many insides of furnished houses known to me), I got the name of being hardened. “This is a terrible hardened one,” they says to prison wisitors, picking out me. “May be said to live in jails, this boy. “Then they looked at me, and I looked at them, and they measured my head, some on ’em — they had better a measured my stomach — and others on ’em giv me tracts what I couldn’t read, and made me speeches what I couldn’t understand. They always went on agen me about the Devil. But what the Devil was I to do? I must put something into my stomach, mustn’t I? — Howsomever, I’m a getting low, and I know what’s due. Dear boy and Pip’s comrade, don’t you be afeerd of me being low.
I'm having trouble with the sentence “This is the way it was, that when I was a ragged little creetur as much to be pitied as ever I see ...”.
Does “to be pitied” modify the leading character of the novel Great Expectations? Does “as much ... as” mean “to the same degree”?