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Middlemarch

Middlemarch

by George Eliot

Dorothea Brooke Timeline and Summary

  • Dorothea lives at Tipton Grange with her uncle, Mr. Brooke, and her sister, Celia.
  • Dorothea longs for greater knowledge and for a chance to do good work in the world.
  • She marries Mr. Casaubon, thinking that helping him with his research is the grand and noble task she was after.
  • It isn't.
  • She's unhappy on her honeymoon, and meets Will Ladislaw in Rome.
  • He seems to understand her better than anyone.
  • Mr. Casaubon doesn't like seeing his wife with his young cousin and forbids Will from visiting them back in England: Dorothea is sad about this.
  • Dorothea becomes a widow when her husband dies.
  • She discovers that her husband has added a codicil in his will saying that if Dorothea remarries to Will Ladislaw, she'll forfeit all of her inheritance.
  • She tries to decide what to do with her life and decides to fund the hospital where Lydgate works.
  • She offers to help him out of his personal financial problems, too.
  • She even offers him marital advice.
  • But when she goes to visit Mrs. Lydgate, she sees Will Ladislaw there, and assumes he's having an affair with Mrs. Lydgate.
  • Dorothea's angry and heartbroken – she realizes for the first time that she was in love with Will.
  • After Rosamond Lydgate sets things straight, Dorothea and Will get together, smooch, marry, and live happily ever after.

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