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by George Eliot

Middlemarch Book 3, Chapter 25 Summary

  • Fred goes to Stone Court (Mr. Featherstone's house) to break the news to Mary.
  • He tells her bluntly what he's done, and what it'll mean for her family.
  • She thinks immediately of her parents, and the sacrifice this will mean for them.
  • He apologizes again and again, and she doesn't bother to lecture him – what good would it do?
  • He promises to do anything she asks to make it right.
  • She tells him she'd be ashamed to love someone as lazy as he is, and then has a few nicer things to say to him, when she sees how upset he really is.
  • Her father comes that evening to see her.
  • Mary expected that they'd need to borrow money from her, and has put her entire savings into a bag for him.
  • Mr. Garth doesn't care about money (which is why he's poor) – he's more concerned about Mary's relationship with Fred.
  • He thinks she's in love with him (it's obvious he's in love with her), and he's afraid he's not reliable enough.
  • He warns her gently, and she assures him that she could never marry a man who doesn't work for his living.

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