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The Mayor of Casterbridge

The Mayor of Casterbridge


by Thomas Hardy

The Mayor of Casterbridge Fate and Free Will Quotes

How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Chapter.Paragraph)

Quote #1

When she plodded on in the shade of the hedge, silently thinking, she had the hard, half-apathetic expression of one who deems anything possible at the hands of Time and Chance, except, perhaps, fair-play. (1.4)

We don't learn anything about Susan's background, but we learn enough from this passage to figure that her past wasn't very happy. She knows that life isn't fair, and she blames it on "Time and Chance" – things over which she has no control.

Quote #2

Lucetta seemed to reflect on this as on an unalterable, impartial verdict. (24.71)

Lucetta knows she has no control over her own aging, but it seems strange that she should accept Elizabeth-Jane's opinion as "an unalterable, impartial verdict."

Quote #3

It is not by what is, in this life, but by what appears, that you are judged; and I therefore think you ought to accept me – for your own good name's sake. (25.19)

Again, events in Lucetta's life seem to be outside her own control – she is judged by "what appears," not by "what is." Society's judgment on her dictates what she can and cannot do.

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