by Sir Walter Scott
Ivanhoe Chapter 3 Summary
- This chapter opens with a passage from James Thomson's long poem "Liberty," published in 1734.
- Clearly we are about to meet the book's hero, because Scott quotes this line from Thomson's work: "And the yellow-hair'd, the blue-eyed Saxon came."
- Cedric's main hall at Rotherwood is a large wooden room with exposed rafters in the traditional Saxon style.
- Cedric sits at the head of the room, at a table on a raised platform.
- Cedric is a cheerful, strong-looking man of 60 with a quick temper.
- He is anxious because his ward, Rowena, has come back late from church.
- Gurth and Wamba have also not yet returned to Rotherwood.
- Cedric is hungry and eager to start dinner.
- Oswald, Cedric's head servant, tries to soothe him by pointing out that it's only an hour after curfew.
- Cedric fires up: how dare the Normans give us a curfew!
- And now they've probably murdered Gurth and Wamba!
- Cedric hears a horn sounding outside.
- He sends his door-wardens to check the gate.
- One warder returns to report the arrival of Prior Aymer and Bois-Guilbert.
- Even though Cedric hates the Normans, it's his duty as a landowner to be a good host, so he invites them in.
- Hundebert, Cedric's chief servant, confirms to Cedric that Prior Aymer is a jolly monk, but Bois-Guilbert is something else entirely – a brave but hard-hearted man.
- Cedric sends Rowena's serving-maid Elgitha to encourage her not to come to dinner tonight.
- Elgitha is sure her lady will come anyway – she is desperate to hear news of the Crusades in Palestine.
- Cedric admits that he wants to hear the news too, even though he does not want to want to.
- There are some odd hints about a son named Wilfred who has disobeyed Cedric.
- Cedric doesn't care what Wilfred is getting up to in Palestine – no, not at all!
- Cedric's evening guests enter the main hall.
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