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Daniel Deronda

Daniel Deronda

by George Eliot

Daniel Deronda Chapter 8 Summary

  • Over at the Rectory, where the Gascoignes live, things aren't going so hot. Rex spends all day in bed. His parents feel sorry for him. Anna is torn between feelings of distress over Rex's unhappiness and anger over Gwendolen's hardheartedness.
  • The Gascoignes talk a little smack about Gwendolen, but overall they're pretty relieved that Rex isn't going to marry her. In fact, Mr. Gascoigne sees it as a "great escape" on Rex's part.
  • When Rex finally gets out of bed, he puts on a brave face. Still, everyone, especially Anna, can tell that he's totally depressed. That's why the narrator goes on about it in such great detail.
  • Rex reveals his new big plan: he's going to move to Canada. The narrator makes a tongue-in-cheek comment about how Rex clearly doesn't know much about the British colonies. Apparently, South Park wasn't the first creative work to make fun of Canada (sorry, Canadian Shmoopers!).
  • So, anyway, Rex wants to move to Canada to go be a rugged man in the wilderness. Anna begs him to take her with him. Rex finally consents.
  • Anna and Rex go to talk to their dad. The narrator comments on how they all look alike.
  • Rex tells his dad that, given what has happened with Gwendolen, there's no way he could concentrate on his studies if he went to Oxford – so obviously the best alternative is to move to Canada.
  • Mr. Gascoigne is like, "heck no." He tells Rex that he can miss a term at college, but moving to the land of hockey and maple leaves is out of the question.
  • Mr. G. also tells Rex that he's disappointed in him for letting his love for Gwendolen mess with his head as much as it has.
  • Rex tells his dad that he can't make any promises about what he's going to do.
  • Anna cries to her dad – she's really disappointed about not getting to go to Canada.
  • Then the narrator ends the chapter by telling us about what was fashionable in clothing at the time, and how Anna's figure wouldn't support skirts that big.

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