The Return of The Native: Book 1, Chapter 10 - Summary & Analysis

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Chapter X: A Desperate Attempt at Persuasion


Diggory Venn's Interaction with Eustacia

      To pursue his plan, the reddleman went to meet Eustacia at her house. Eustacia's grandfather, Captain Vye, recognized him as the man, he had previously met on the highway, carrying Thomasin in his wagon.

      When Eustacia came to see him, he told her that Wildeve might create a crisis in the life of Thomasin Yeobright if he decided not to marry her and asked for her help in persuading Wildeve to marry Thomasin. Diggory told her that since she had a great deal of influence and power over men-folk, she would easily persuade Widleve. Finding Eustacia refusing to intervene, Diggory bluntly told her that she herself was the woman who stood between Wildeve and Thomasin. Eustacia replied that Wildeve belonged to her long before he had met Thomasin, and she was not going to give him up to an inferior woman like Thomasin, unless she found a better man as she had already been bored with Egdon Heath.

The Rsddleman Made an Offer to Eustacia

      Diggory Venn suggested that he could secure her an appointment as a companion to a rich widow at Budmouth to relieve her from her ennui and loneliness. But Eustacia did not show much interest in the job as it meant a loss of freedom in keeping her employer amused and pleased. The reddleman said that he ordy wished to make Thomasin happy by getting her married to Wildeve but Eustacia refused to talk any more on that topic and so dismissed the reddleman. Then she spontaneously revealed to herself that she would never give up Wildeve.

Critical Analysis

      This chapter reveals the reddleman's devoted love to Thomasin and his final desire is to see Thomasin happy. This chapter also reveals Eustacia's character a bit more. She is a vain and proud girl. She is jealous of Thomasin instead of feeling sympathetic towards her. She is a woman of independent mentality and would certainly shift to a congenial environment leaving Egdon Heath but not at the cost of her independence.

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