Tess of the D'Urbervilles
by Thomas Hardy
Alec D'Urberville Timeline and Summary
- Alec sees Tess for the first time when she appears at his estate of The Slopes as his distant relative.
- (He chooses not to tell her that he's not actually a D'Urberville by blood.)
- Alec lusts heartily after Tess.
- She goes home, and he sends a letter inviting her to come and work for his mother.
- When she arrives, he deliberately frightens her by driving the cart too fast.
- He makes her feel how dependent she is on him so that she'll grow to trust him.
- He gives her a ride home from town late at night when she was getting harassed by fellow farm workers, and takes her for a ramble through the forest.
- He gets lost, and leaves her by herself while he goes out to reconnoiter.
- When he comes back, he finds her asleep under the trees, and rapes her.
- He's feels a bit guilty about it later, especially when Tess leaves Trantridge to go home.
- Alec makes fun of the Reverend Clare, who tries to convert him.
- Alec is, finally, converted by the Reverend Clare, and becomes a wandering preacher.
- He sees Tess in passing while giving a sermon in a village.
- He becomes obsessed with her again, and after a brief struggle, gives up on being a preacher to start stalking her.
- When her father dies and family is destitute and on the verge of homelessness, he steps in to offer a cottage on his estate.
- He persuades her that Angel will never come back, so she should live with him as his mistress.
- When Angel does come back, Tess stabs Alec in the heart and kills him.