Charlotte became very ill, and she and Emily were sent back home to Hawort. This underlined their isolation. This situation cut them off from the common people. The Bronte children began to create imaginary worlds to amuse themselves in this isolated village. They wrote stories and poems about these fantasy lands and the people that inhabited them.
The sisters grew up near one of the sources of Industrial Revolution, in an English county divided between large landed estates and intensive manufacturing; and far from being mysteriously sequested from all this, living only in their own private imaginative world, their fiction is profoundly influenced by it. England was in transition from rural to an industrial nation.
The sisters had to grow up between both worlds. Around the same time, she began writing Wuthering Heights. She wrote only one novel with a different style by developing a fantasy world by reason of her environment she lived. On the one hand we can see the principles of Gothic novel with the supernatural elements; on the other hand we assume some clues about her life in this novel. Her novel has a different form and atmosphere apart from other Victorian novels. Without her personal experiences, the novel would not have been the same.
The farm house, Wuthering Heights itself, may have been inspired by a house on the moors where they lived. It was also the source of many local rumours. The characters in the novel also represent a few of her family members through their personalities and actions. However, if we look for parallels for the main story of Cathy and Heathcliff, a source may be found in stories written in childhood by Emily and her brother Branwell together Without doubt, Emily was inspired and influenced by Branwell in creating Heathcliff and Hindley.
He planned to travel to London to apply for the Royal Academy but his high hopes disappeared as he moved from job to job, and scandal to scandal. It is likely that she based much of the degradation of Hindley on the decline of her brother. Wuthering Heights is in the same ethical and moral tradition as the other great Victorian novels. Emily Bronte depicts and criticizes life styles as a deadly struggle for money and power. She is attacking those who judge others solely by physical appearance or money or birth. For instance, because of his appearance and social class Heathcliff is scorned and excluded throughout the novel.
The characters of Gothic fiction include tyrants, villains, maniacs, Byronic heroes, monks, nuns, madwoman, vampires, monsters, demons, dragons, angels, ghosts, skeletons and the Devil himself. Elements of the Gothic have also made their way into other writings. It shadows the Romantic idealism and individualism and the dualities of Victorian realism and decadence. Even his mainstream novels often reveal indebtedness to Gothic motifs: secret identity, revenge, hatreds, persecuted heroines and remote settings are commonly encountered in Scott's works. The ruins of gothic buildings give rise to multiple emotions by representing the decay and collapse of human creations.
The novel is set at a time when capitalism and industrialization are changing not only the economy but also the traditional social structure and the relationship of the classes. The two houses, Thrushcross Grange and Wuthering Heights, represent opposite poles of order and civilization versus chaos and ignorance. There are numerous differences between Wuthering Heights and Thrushcross Grange. First of all, their own names give the idea of completely different atmospheres: Wuthering Heights represent a windy and stormy environment, whereas Thruscross Grange represents a calm and serene place.
Wuthering Heights, set in the moor lands, is the most likely setting of all sorts of misfortunes in a stormy weather, whereas Thrushcross Grange which is set in a green valley is the land of peace and calm, of order, moral and cultural standards. The inhabitants of Wuthering Heights were that of the working class, while those of Thrushcross Grange were high up on the social ladder. It is clear that these two contrasting estates in the novel represent opposing worlds and values of the Victorian England.
The history of the Earnshaws is a penetrating insight into the psychology of a poorly family existing in isolation from the rest of society.
Besides throughout the story the males abuse females and males who are weak or powerless. This can be seen in their use of various kinds of imprisonment or confinement, which takes social, emotional, financial, legal, and physical forms. Earnshaw expects Catherine to behave properly and hurtfully rejects her "bad-girl" behaviour. Edgar's ultimatum that Catherine must make a final choice between him and Heathcliff restricts Catherine's identity by forcing her to reject an essential part of her nature; with loving selfishness Edgar confines his daughter Cathy to the boundaries of Thrushcross Grange.
A vindictive Hindley strips Heathcliff of his position in the family, thereby trapping him in a degraded labouring position. Heathcliff literally incarcerates Isabella as her husband and legal overseer, and later he imprisons both Cathy and Nellie; also, Cathy is isolated from the rest of the household after her marriage to Linton.
In the portrayal of Heathcliff we see a number of beliefs which were current in the nineteenth century of the Victorian society. Heathcliff, the outsider, has no social or biological place in the existing social structure; he offers Catherine a non-social or pre-social relationship, an escape from the conventional restrictions and material comforts of the upper classes, represented by the genteel Lintons.
This relationship outside society is "the only authentic form of living in a world of exploitation and inequality. Heathcliff and Cathy do not exist in a dreamlike world. It is not accurate to say that their relationship is irrelevant to the social and moral reason. In chapter 15 the show of passion is of great intensity.
He sees her wasted state and tears and agony torment him. I only wish us never to be parted. She had totally different ideas concerning love and unity between a woman and a man. Heathcliff doubtlessly believes in the prophecy that he and Catherine will never be parted and that Catherine will haunt him until the moment of his death. Bronte uses mysteries, often involving the supernatural and heavily narrated with horror.
They are usually set against dark backgrounds such as haunted buildings and barren, threatening, country sides. The majority of the events in the novel take place in a wild and primitive landscape in a gloomy atmosphere of Wuthering Heights. The story is told by two characters Mr. In a series of flashbacks and time shifts, Bronte draws a powerful picture of the life in Wuthering Heights, a large rustic home on the moors.
One day in the s, widower Mr. Earnshaw comes back from town with a new brother for his children; a small, black boy whom she calls Heathcliff. Hindley, the son of the household, is not pleased, but Catherine his sister, finds a playmate in this boy. However, things will change severely when old Earnshaw dies and Hindley takes over the household with his wife. Haethcliff loves Catherine but he is bullied by Hindley Overhearing Catherine tell Nelly that she cannot marry him because it would degrade her, he leaves the house. Moreover Catherine accepts the proposal of an Edgar Linton, the wealthy owner of the Thrushcross Grange After three years of absence, he returns as a rich man, now ready to offer his love to Catherine, but finds her married to Edgar Linton.
His desire for revenge finally wears him out and he longs for the death which will reunite him with Catherine A brief summary of the book Wuthering Heights is stated here in order to inform the reader about what is the story in general in the book and to introduce the characters. From now on I will analyze how the author combines the fantastic elements mainly the gothic elements with realistic ones. Wuthering Heights as a classic of English Literature, written in the transitive period from Romanticism to Victorian Era, or as a post-romantic novel, includes the trends of both literary traditions.
It combines elements the Romantic tale of evil-possession, and Romantic developments of the eighteenth century Gothic novel, with the developing Victorian tradition of Domestic fiction in a realist mode. Its use of the ballad and folk material, romance forms and the fantastic, its emphasis on the passions, its view of childhood, and the representation of the romantic quest for selfhood and of aspiring individualism, all link the novel with Romanticism.
Pykett, Here it is clarified that Wuthering Heights can be read with elements of both Romantic text and the Victorian text. Two worlds collide in this novel. Wuthering Heights is indeed a difficult novel to approach. The novel is notable for its atmosphere and for its typical characteristics such as multiple narration, framework narratives, inhuman characters, ghosts, violation of graves, the revenge motif, sadism, dark stairways, stormy weather, nightmares, extreme landscapes, melancholy figures, moonlight and candles, torture and excessive cruelty, a supernatural presence, madness, maniacal behaviour, communication between the living and the dead which explain why the novel is often placed in the gothic genre.
For this reason, the relation between Wuthering Heights and the Gothic form will be thoroughly discussed in various ways and will be demonstrated in the research that the author used the gothic to explore her own creativity. To begin with, most of the action takes place in a gloomy setting Wuthering Heights However, the gloom of this setting is often contrasted by a seemingly pleasant setting where the sub-plot is revealed in Throscross Grange. By use of contrasting settings, it is the aim of the Gothic novel to experience two distinctly separate worlds that are neither comfortable nor tangible to the reader.
Thrushcross Grange is not located on the heights, so it is not subject to the same harsh winds and storms that frequent in Wuthering Heights. The vibrant colours associated with the house set it apart from Wuthering Heights. The portrayals of these two places are also indicative of the people who occupy them. The Lintons, who occupy Thrushcross Grange, are a happy family.
On the other hand, the turmoil that ensues at Wuthering Heights between the Earnshaws and Heathcliff makes for a strange life. Even when Heathcliff owns both properties he chooses not live at Thrushcross Grange but at Wuthering Heights. Thus, Wuthering Heights creates two distinct worlds.
Scenes depicted in the book are often painted as gloomy and foggy. Wuthering Heights is also described as a dark, dangerous land area and frightening place where it is easy to get lost or drown. The isolated place of Wuthering Heights reflects the alienation and isolation of Cathy, Heathcliff, Hindley, and Isabella. This isolation and the atmosphere of the house apart from the society create a gloomy and gothic atmosphere and originate for the bad moods of the characters.
Lockwood calls attention to the isolated setting in the first paragraph of the story: This is certainly a beautiful country! In all England, I do not believe that I could have fixed on a situation so completely removed from the stir of society.
A perfect misanthropist's heaven: and Mr. Heathcliff and I are such a suitable pair to divide the desolation between us. Consider, for example, the following passage at the beginning of Chapter 2: Yesterday afternoon set in misty and cold. I had half a mind to spend it by my study fire, instead of wading through heath and mud to Wuthering Heights. On that bleak hill-top the earth was hard with a black frost, and the air made me shiver through every limb. Pure, bracing ventilation they must have up there at all times, indeed: one may guess the power of the north wind, blowing over the edge, by the excessive slant of a few stunted firs at the end of the house; and by a range of gaunt thorns all stretching their limbs one way, as if craving alms of the sun.
It deals with the sound the wind makes. Golban, As the reader comes to know the characters based at this house, it is not difficult to see them the same way - exposed to great passions and violence, but ultimately seeking love and warmth from one another. Moreover, the name of the house and the name of the book are same. The house is the main setting for most of the action, its role is so important that it almost seems like a living, breathing, reflecting the bad attitude of its inhabitants. It is old, mysterious, unwelcoming and possibly haunted.
Even its location is inhospitable. Its nearest neighbour is four miles away, and its position on the moors leaves it exposed to the roughest weather. Heathcliff often stands in the doorway of Wuthering Heights controlling who crosses the threshold. To Heathcliff, whoever controls the house has the power, so even though he seeks revenge for all of his mistreatment, he does by acquiring real estate. Being accepted into houses means a lot Hindley never welcomes Heathcliff into Wuthering Heights, however the Lintons open their doors to Catherine but not Heathcliff.
The house has different meanings for each character prison and punishment, social class, horror, and nostalgia. The house is loaded with symbolic importance. It's up on the stormy hillside above Thrushcross Grange with its brightly lit salon and expansive garden. Lockwood notices some of the house's strange details from the very beginning for example; Before passing the threshold, I paused to admire a quantity of grotesque carving lavished over the front, and especially about the principal door, above which, among a wilderness of crumbling griffins and shameless little boys, I detected the date "," and the name "Hareton Earnshaw.
However, the implication is that the image is Gothic and a little sinister. Emily Bronte grows up on the Yorkshire moors, so a lot of critics speculate about the influence the houses in her village of Haworth had on her description of Wuthering Heights. The house itself is creating the unwelcoming aspect that greets Lockwood on his arrival: "the narrow windows are deeply set in the wall, and the corners defended with large jutting stones" p. This impression of the residents of the house being isolated from outsiders is emphasised by the fact that the house is repeatedly associated with locked doors, gates and windows throughout the novel.
The house itself is old; a date above the door suggests it dates from The intense horror of nightmare came over me: I tried to draw back my arm, but the hand clung to it, and a most melancholy voice sobbed, 'Let me in - let me in! It is a young girl called Catherine Linton who had been haunting the house for twenty years. Upon her death, Heathcliff begs her to haunt him.
This insane passion is part of the extreme circumstances that must take place to prove how passion rules over all. Heathcliff, repeatedly seeks out visitations from the ghost of his beloved Catherine. He even digs up her grave in order to be closer to her. Both of these ideas of haunting and ghosts are very much Gothic. The second instance of seeing ghosts happens at the very end.
Lockwood meets a young boy swearing that he has seen Heathcliff and Catherine walking along the moors. Nelly Dean narrates this event as: I was going to the Grange one evening- a dark evening threatening thunder- and, just at the turn of the Heights, I encountered a little boy with a sheep and teo lamps before hin, he was crying terribly, and I supposed the lambs were skittish, and would not be guided.
What is the matter, my little man? I asked. Dead characters refuse to leave the living alone, and the living accept that the deceased find ways of coming back to haunt them. In a departure from traditional Gothic tales, these haunting are sometimes welcome. It is the supernatural theme which is a recurrent one in gothic novels, dreams, ghosts and gaps between this world and the next.
The paranormal touch adds to the eerie feelings and the extreme circumstances that a novel like Wuthering Heights portrays. Heathcliff is probably the most Gothic character in this book. He is found wandering the streets when he is young by Mr. The readers are free to imagine anything they want. The unknown usually becomes romantic in some way and Healthcliff is an unknown from the beginning of the story. He is described as a gypsy in appearance, probably to portray darkness and romantic mystery with dark eyes, hair, and skin colouring; and his parents were never revealed.
Perhaps he was left by the side of the road or perhaps he is magic.
The master tried to explain the matter; but he was really half dead with fatigue, and all that I could make out, amongst her scolding, was a tale of his seeing it starving, and houseless, and as good as dumb, in the streets of Liverpool, where he picked it up and inquired for its owner. Not a soul knew to whom it belonged, he said; and his money and time being both limited, he thought it better to take it home with him at once… p We are never told where Heathcliff's parents are or where exactly he comes from.
He is a passionate character, especially in his love for Catherine. He hates to love her because she has treated him so badly. He is also a vengeful character, so he is always trying to hurt someone through someone else. He is tormented by Catherine and his quest for vengeance. His all-consuming passions destroy both himself and those around him. In the end he goes mad, another characteristic often seen in Gothic novels. Heathcliff knows that he can never exist without Cathy, and his love reaches enormous proportions, Heathcliff goes to extremes, resorting to unnatural actions to fulfil his need to be one with Cathy.
Catherine Earnshaw, may you not rest as long as I am living. You said I killed you--haunt me then. The murdered do haunt their murderers. I believe--I know that ghosts have wandered the earth. Be with me always--take any form--drive me mad. Only do not leave me in this abyss, where I cannot find you! Oh, God! It is unutterable! I cannot live without my life! I cannot live without my soul! He does not wish for her to rest in peace but to exist only to be with him.
Desperate to be with her in death, he knocks out one side of her coffin, with the instructions that one side of his be knocked out too, so that they may lie together for eternity. There is another mystery connected with this character. Nobody knows where he is, and just like the secret of his birth, this remains a mystery. No other hints are given about where Heathcliff was and how he made his fortune over the course of his three-year absence. On returning, he is ruthlessly determined to destroy those who degraded him and prevented him from being with Catherine. He beats and kicks Hindley, he throws a knife at Isabella, he savagely slaps young Catherine, and he does not call a doctor for his dying son.
Heathcliff tyrannies his victims just like any other gothic characters in the most traditional horror stories. At first Mr. A Byronic hero is defined by Thomas B. Macaulay according to The Oxford Companion to English Literature as "proud, moody, cynical, with defiance on his brow, and misery in his heart First of all, he has experienced great misery and pain in his life. This pain stems from a difficult childhood and the loss of his one true love to another man, and to death.
Second, Heathcliff seeks revenge on the pain he has experienced in his life. Thirdly, despite the faults that Heathcliff has in his character, the reader is able to sympathize with him, to a point. While in the second half of the book Heathcliff becomes increasingly cruel, during the first half his actions can frequently be dismissed as somewhat justifiable under the circumstances. Therefore, for these three reasons, it can be concluded that Heathcliff is a Byronic hero since he fits the major criteria.
Catherine Earnshaw is another major character in the novel. Heathcliff is usually considered the type most unacceptable and dangerous for a Gothic heroine to encounter, but Catherine handles him; she understands how cruel Heathcliff can be as she advises Isabella not to approach him, but at the same time, she knows how to get along with him. Moreover after the fight between Heathcliff and Edgar, Cathy fell ill; and her illness seemed to affect her reasoning, as if to be driving her mad. I thought she was going mad. Here the supernatural is the axis of the gothic genre it is the source of the sinister atmosphere and creates the chilling extreme feeling that gives a gothic novel meaning.
It is not only a matter of love but also a cry for identity. What Catherine has to confront seems more complex than the conflicts of duty and emotion experienced by more stereotypical Gothic heroines. Conger states that: Gothic heroines were traditionally placed in a conflict situation between a dark seducer and a fair lover, but theirs was an external conflict; they never felt —admitted they felt — a pull in two directions. Catherine is the first important exception to that pattern, for she internalizes her conflict completely. She is not simply placed between two lovers; she feels divided between two lovers.
Antitheses, made visible in Gothic transgressions, allowed proper limits and values to be asserted at the closure of narratives in which mysteries were explained or moral resolutions advanced. Gothic heroines belong almost invariably to the good, and wish to escape from the evil to the other, without experiencing any difficulty in choosing between them. Catherine, on the other hand, has Heathcliff who is almost the personification of evil and negativity beside her, even though she chooses Edgar as a marriage partner.
Catherine knows that she ought to marry Heathcliff, but cannot give up the wealthy and respectable life that awaits her on becoming Mrs Linton. Catherine does not follow the stereotypical moral injunction; instead, she is divided into her lovers, and struggles to have them both; she cannot choose one of them, but wants them to co-exist in her life. Catherine knows what is considered to be evil and Heathcliff is not to be categorised as good, but at the same time she cannot simply ignore the fact that Heathcliff is a fundamental part of her existence. However, it is almost surprising that Catherine knows how dangerous a man might be.
The author presents her discriminations and assumptions as being in accordance with the categories of Gothic fiction. She desires both men in different ways, and her choice depends on a system of values of her own which is not identical with. Although she seems willing to play by its rules, and the bad as the Gothic presents it does not necessarily mean the bad to her, though she sees that others see it to be bad. The indecisiveness of her actions engenders a confusing state of mind and heart, which is the most remarkable difference between Catherine and other Gothic heroines.
There are two additional characters in the novel that resemble Gothic heroines, Isabella and Cathy Linton. The theme of the persecuted woman inevitably arises when we consider Wuthering Heights in the light of Gothic fiction, but rather to see here is how Emily Bronte received the Gothic and how her female characters are influenced by the genre. Generally, Gothic heroines are cautiously and delicately educated, kept away from male characters and sexuality. She is raised in an upper-class family, without knowing any other men than her decent father and brother.
Isabella obviously cannot see how dangerous it would be to marry Heathcliff, when he appears wearing the mask of a gentleman. Given the way she portrays the Heights, Bronte was clearly conscious of Gothic horror and evokes Gothic associations when she makes Isabella ask Nelly: How did you contrive to preserve the common sympathies of human nature when you resided here?
I cannot recognise any sentiment which those around share with me. Is Mr. Heathcliff a man? If so, is he mad? And if not, is he a devil? Her newly-married husband, Heathcliff, is the most insolvable mystery; he has transformed himself into something she cannot categorise: neither a gentleman nor a human being but an evil creature which baffles her understanding. On the day of her arrival at the Heights, the gate is locked, and when it is unlocked, she enters the Yorkshire equivalent of a Gothic castle.
Her rapid and urgent questions show, however, that she realises there is something here which she cannot cope with, given her moral system and cultural expectations. To her, Heathcliff was the hero who rescued her from the Grange where people did not approve of her feelings for him. Nelly, the narrator, tells us what had happened to her Isabella would not stay long with Heathcliff.
A few days after my visit, she arrived at Thrushcross Grange, out of breath and bleeding.
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Heathcliff had thrown a knife at her; she had escaped and run all the way to the Grnage. She learns instead that she must act powerfully in order to counter the violence and the evil surrounding her. And she is carefully protected from witnessing any perversity, especially as represented by Heathcliff.
Till she reached the age of thirteen, she had not once been beyond the range of the park by herself. Linton would take her with him a mile or so outside, on rare occasions; but he trusted her to no one else. Wuthering Heights and Mr. Heathcliff did not exist for her; she was a perfect recluse, and, apparently, perfectly contented. When she goes the park at the Grange and visits the Heights, she feels insulted that the people do not treat her in the respectful way she has come to expect from her upbringing.
Even when Edgar, briefly cast in the role of a Gothic-style domineering father, warns her not to approach Heathcliff, Cathy does not understand how dangerous he could be, secretly writes to Linton, and even goes to see him at the Heights.. In this regard, she is also an inexperienced heroine who is not able to understand the distinction between reality and appearance, which is one of the essential features of the Gothic.
Being shut up there is a persecution in itself, of course, but it is also cruel that she is locked in a room to watch over her dying husband alone and without any help. Yet being forced to nurse a person in agony all the time is a torment, which exhausts Cathy, physically and mentally. Indeed, it is remarkable how the Heights preserves its Gothic atmosphere just as before; the gate is always locked, the fierce dogs are kept just as Lockwood sees them, and there is a mysterious, sinister room which should not be used except for compelling reasons.
Cathy, here, becomes a prisoner and so her narrative reminds us of Gothic heroines who are locked in forbidding castles. Likewise, Heathcliff remains the Gothic tyrant figure; his continuing violent behaviour and his restraint of her freedom of action is presumed when he lifts his hand, and Cathy springs to a safer distance The author uses Cathy to suggest that there are other ways for heroines to escape or combat the Gothic plots that surround them.
Cathy learns to compromise and be patient in order to understand Hareton and the father-son-like relationship that has arisen between him and Heathcliff. Through their experiences, both Isabella and Cathy achieve self- development beyond the scope of the traditional Gothic virgin; their self-realisation is more independently and actively accomplished, and this may be the key to understanding how Emily Bronte received and reshaped Gothic heroines. Furthermore within the novel there are several instances of madness which is another common subject matter of the gothic novels. The depiction of madness reflects the interweaving themes of the novel.
Madness can assume many different forms: a concept demonstrated throughout Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights. Many characters exhibit behaviours that appear to be "mad.
Heathcliff also has tendencies that make him seem insane. For instance, Heathcliff's love for Catherine controlled not only his life, but his actions and his whole being. Unchecked and unanswered, his love turned melancholy, and inevitably insane. Come in! He sobbed. Cathy, do come. Oh do- once more! Hear me this time- Catherine, at last! Lockwood is sleeping in Catherine's room. Therefore, when he hears the screaming, he thinks it is Catherine's ghost. He is disappointed to see that it is Mr. Lockwood, and after he orders him to leave, Heathcliff opens the window and calls outside for his beloved, dead Catherine.
He receives no answer. Near the end of the book he continues to his strange behaviours. After nights of wandering the moors, and many days without food, Heathcliff is going mad. His face and eyes are altered; he seems excitable and agitated. There is also a strange happiness in his face. When he returns home the night before his death, Nelly hears him say Catherine's name as though she was present.
She can also hear him mumbling in low tones, talking to someone who isn't there. I'd rather have seen him gnash his teeth than smile so. I cried, 'don't, for God's sake, stare as if you saw an unearthly vision. Don't, for God's sake, shout so loud,' he replied. And whatever it was, it communicated, apparently.
His obsessive love resulted with these insane actions. Thus madness is seen to partake of the supernatural; the diabolical; the mystic; the expression of passion; and, the physical symptoms of illness. In the novel, Catherine has two episodes of mental instability which are described in some detail. She has been talking nonsense the whole evening; but let her have quiet, and proper attendance, and she'll rally.
She was struck during a tempest of passion with a kind of fit She does not understand why she is not getting her way, and becomes paranoid. The association between Catherine's madness and diabolism is made when Heathcliff asks her on her sick bed if she is possessed by the devil. The physical aspects of her breakdown are noted in her inability to eat or sleep. Thus many disparate elements unite in this intricate picture of a mind of turmoil. Another unusual event occurs in chapter 12 That's a turkey's,' she murmured to herself; 'and this is a wild duck's; and this is a pigeon's. Ah, they put pigeons' feathers in the pillows - no wonder I couldn't die!
Let me take care to throw it on the floor when I lie down. And here is a moor-cock's; and this - I should know it among a thousand - it's a lapwing's. Bonny bird; wheeling over our heads in the middle of the moor…. Heathcliff set a trap over it, and the old ones dared not come. I made him promise he'd never shoot a lapwing after that, and he didn't. Yes, here are more! Did he shoot my lapwings, Nelly? Are they red, any of them?
Let me look. There's a mess! The down is flying about like snow. She recalls a time when Heathcliff shot a bird, leaving the babies to die. Her strange behaviours are definite in another example in the same chapter. I see in you, Nelly,' she continued dreamily, 'an aged woman: you have grey hair and bent shoulders.
This bed is the fairy cave under Penistone crags, and you are gathering elf-bolts to hurt our heifers; pretending, while I am near….. Where is that? Don't YOU see that face? And say what I could, I was incapable of making her comprehend it to be her own; so I rose and covered it with a shawl. Who is it? I hope it will not come out when you are gone! Nelly, the room is haunted! I'm afraid of being alone! I insisted. Linton: you knew it a while since. She talks as though she knows more than Nelly, as though she is better off.
The black press turns out to be a mirror. Catherine, lost without her Heathcliff, cannot recognize her own reflection in the mirror. Afraid it is a ghost, she makes Nelly cover it. Their love and dependency on each other is consuming and obsessive. Their separation causes unbearable force to drive Heathcliff and Catherine insane.
Society tears Heathcliff apart from his true love forcing him to direct his revenge on this society, the cause of his undying pain. The weather in the novel also indicates its gothic setting, the winds, storms, and fog occurs frequently throughout the story. Moreover, stormy weather in the novel is used to foreshadow negative events or moods. There is an immense bond between Cathy and Heathcliff that not even death can part.
The violent storm, complete with lightning fierce enough to split a tree, symbolizes the split of their intense bond. Here it is a Gothic symbol because nature is predicting human fate to come. Additionally another important image that recurs in Gothic novels is a decaying graveyard. Wuthering Heights is no different. At the very end of the novel, Mr. Lockwood passes by a church where Edgar, Heathcliff and Catherine are buried. He mentions that each tombstone has decayed differently. There are many Gothic images in this novel and these seemed the most prevalent.
Edgar Linton, Catherine, and Heathcliff all lay side by side. These three people, who fought each other throughout their lives, will now lay beside each other forever. The fact is that this ground is not quiet and it never will be. The image of the three tombstones and the bodies that lay beneath is disturbing to say the least. Bronte wants to drive home the inevitability of death, and the perverse nature of man. Read preview. Read preview Overview. Did Arnold Believe in God? Mankind Quarterly, Vol. English language The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.
These lines that I have thrown into italics were written in , five years after Newman's secession, in the midst no doubt of a swelling tide of Liberal reaction, destined, how- ever, as we all know now, to interfere very little with the spread and power of those deep undercurrents setting from the Oxford Movement. The hasty arrogance, the failure in feeling and right instinct, which the passage shows, mark the chief limitation and weakness in the artist who wrote it.
It is a weakness of taste, a limitation, as Mr. Leslie Stephen would perhaps insist, of thought and idea. Taken together with the country-house scenes in 'Jane Eyre,' with some of the curate scenes in ' Shirley,' with various passages of raw didactic and rather shrill preaching, this utterance, and some others like it, suggest a lack of social intelligence, of a wide outlook, of that sense, above all, for measure and urbanity which belongs to other and more perfect art like George Sand's or to a more exquisitely tempered instinct like that of Burns.
The Irish and Celtic element in Charlotte Bronte, how- ever, is not all. Far from it. Crossing, controlling the wild impetuous temper of the Irishwoman is an influence from another world, an influence of habit and long associa- tion, breathed from Yorkshire, and the hard, frugal, persist- ent North. One has but to climb her Haworth hills to feel it flowing around one.
Let it be in the winter, on some frosty white-rimed day, when the tops of the moors are lost in the cold mist, while a dim sun steals along their sides showing the great mills in the hollows, the ice -fringed streams, the bare half -poisoned woods, the rows of stone cottages, while the horse's hoofs ring sharp on the paving- stones of this Haworth Street that mounts stern and steep, without a relenting slope or zig-zag, heedless of the strained muscles of man or beast, from the busy factories below to the towered church and the little parsonage on the hill-top.
The small stone houses mount with you on either hand, low, ugly, solid, without a trace of colour or ornament, the decent yet unlovely homes of a sturdy industrious race. The chim- neys pour out their smoke, the valley hums with life and toil. You stand at the top of the hill and look around you. Man- chester and the teeming Lancashire world are behind you.
Bradford and Leeds in front of you. Amid this rude full-blooded keen-brained world grew up the four wonderful children who had survived their fragile mother and their two elder sisters. From the beginning they showed the Celtic qualities the Celtic vision that re- makes the world, throws it into groups and pictures, seen with a magical edge and sharpness.
Are they gathered on a winter's night round the kitchen fire with Tabby for a com- panion? Charlotte -a mere child- sees the little scene as a whole, as a poet or a painter would see it, notes the winter storm and wind outside, the glow within, the quick-witted children, the old servant, throws it all into a fragment of vivid dialogue and writes it down realised, on record, for ever. Or a tramp, talking the language of religious mania, comes to the door. Again Charlotte marks him, stamps him into words, makes a permanent representative figure out of him, a figure of the imagination.
Yet all the time there are secret bonds between these four small creatures the chil- dren of an Irish father and a Cornish mother and the stern practical Yorkshire world about them. For they come not from the typical and Catholic Ireland, but from the Ireland of the North, on which commerce and Protestantism have set their grasp, the Ireland which has half yielded itself to England.
In the girls, at any rate, the Bible and Puritanism have mingled with their Celtic blood. Economy, self-disci- pline, constancy, self-repression, order, these things come easily to them, so far as the outer conduct of life is concern- ed. They take their revenge in dreams, in the whims and passions of the imagination. But they cook and clean and sew, they learn all the household arts that their aunt and Tabby can teach them. They are docile, hard-working, hard- living. They are poor, saving, industrious, keenly alive to the value of money and of work, like the world about them.
And it is this mixture of Celtic dreaming with English realism and self-control which gives value and originality to all they do to Emily's 'Wuthering Heights,' to Charlotte's four stories. Lady Caroline Lamb, an Irishwoman like Charlotte, could tear you a passion to tatters, in 'Glenarvon,' with a certain wild power. Heaven or hell, I care not which, have cast a ray so bright around my brow that not all the perfidy of a heart as lost as mine, of a heart loaded, as you know too well, with crimes man shudders even to imagine not all the envy and malice of those whom my contempt has stung can lower me to their level.
And you, Calantha, do you think you will ever learn to hate me, even were I to leave and to betray you? This was passion, masterful passion, as a woman, Byron's pupil, conceived it, in , the year of Charlotte Bronte's birth. It is instructive sometimes to look back at landmarks of this lesser kind. There is vigour in these sentences, but compare their vague and mouthing falsity with any conver- sation in 'Jane Eyre'- above all, with the touches in the last scene between Jane and Rochester.
I preferred utter loneliness to the constant at- tendance of servants; but Jane's soft ministry will be a per- petual joy. To the finest fibre of my nature, sir. Reverently lifting his hat from his brow, and bending his sightless eyes to the earth, he stood in mute devotion. Only the last words of the worship were audible. I humbly entreat my Redeemer to give me strength to lead henceforth a purer life than I have done hitherto. Then he stretched out his hand to be led. We entered the wood and wended homeward. What feeling, and what truth! As to the outer and material history of 'Jane Eyre,' it is written to some extent in Mrs.
Gaskell's 'Life,' and has em- ployed the pens of many a critic and local antiquary since. Gaskell has recorded that, according to Charlotte's, own testimony, the incident of the midnight voice heard by Rochester and Jane was ' true ' and ' really happened. The literary affiliations and connections of the book would be far more important and significant if one could trace them. But they are not easy to trace.
If one gathers together the information to be gleaned from Mrs. Gaskell's ' Life ' and elsewhere, as to Charlotte's book education that voracious and continuous reading to which we have many references, one may arrive at a general outline, something of this kind. There were no children's books in Haworth Parsonage. Rowe's ' Letters from the Dead to the Living,' the ' British Essay- ists,' collected from the 'Rambler,' the 'Mirror,' and else- where, and stories from the ' Lady's Magazine. Nothing was softened or adapted for them.
Before little Maria, the eldest girl, died, at the age of eleven, her father could discuss with her any current topic in which he himself was interested, as though she were grown-up and his equal. The Duke of Wellington was their nursery-hero, and Char- lotte, a child of twelve, recorded at the time the emotions with which the news of Catholic Emancipation was received at Haworth Parsonage, and spent her leisure time at school, when she was fifteen, in fighting a Radical schoolfellow on behalf of the Duke and against Reform.
Thus strongly were the foundations laid, deep in the rich main soil of English life and letters. The force and freedom with which these lonely girls wrote and thought from the be- ginning they owed largely to this first training. Later on, both in Charlotte and in Emily, certain foreign influences come in.
Just as Emily certainly owed something to Hof- mann's Tales, so Charlotte probably owed much more, I am inclined to believe, than has yet been recognised to the books of French Romanticism, that great movement starting from Chateaubriand at the beginning of the century, and already at its height before 'Jane Eyre' was written. There are one or two pieces of evidence that bear on this point. In , before the visit to Brussels, Charlotte writes that she has received ' another bale of French books from G ' apparently from the Taylors 'containing upwards of forty volumes.
They are like the rest, clever, wicked, sophistical and immoral. The best of it is, that they give one a thor- ough idea of France and Paris. George Sand, making her first great suc- cess with 'Indiana' in , had produced 'Valentine,' ' Le'- lia,' 'Jacques,' 'Ldone Leoni,' 'Andre,' ' Mauprat,' and some others. Balzac, herald of another age and another world, had been ten years at work on the 'Comedie Humaine.
During her two years in Brussels, under the teaching of M.