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Tess of the D'Urbervilles

Tess of the D'Urbervilles


by Thomas Hardy

Tess of the D'Urbervilles Phase II: "Maiden No More," Chapter Thirteen Summary

  • The afternoon of Tess's arrival, several old friends come over to see her, dressed in their best clothes.
  • They assume that she's going to marry Alec D'Urberville, and are fascinated by the idea of their old friend marrying a gentleman—especially a gentleman with a reputation for being a player and a heart-breaker.
  • The cheerfulness of her friends is contagious, and Tess becomes almost cheerful herself.
  • The next morning, though, is a Monday—a workday—and there are no visitors to cheer her up. She's terribly depressed.
  • One week she goes to church, because she loves to hear the music (she inherited that love of music from her mother), but everyone looks around and whispers about her.
  • She spends much of her time in the bedroom that she shares with the younger children.
  • She hardly goes out anymore, and many of their neighbors think that she's gone away.
  • Only after dark does she venture outside the house. She doesn't worry about the dark in the woods, but she does want to avoid other people as much as possible.
  • Tess feels guilty about her past, even though it was a social law that she was "made" to break, according to the narrator (13.15).

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