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Tess of the D'Urbervilles

Tess of the D'Urbervilles


by Thomas Hardy

Tess of the D'Urbervilles Phase VII: "Fulfillment," Chapter Fifty-Eight Summary

  • The next morning, Angel wakes up early and sneaks out to buy some food at a nearby village.
  • Tess doesn't want to leave the house, since they're so secluded there from the outside world.
  • Angel agrees to stay another night.
  • Unfortunately, the caretaker of the house comes by to check things out early the next morning, and sees them while they're asleep.
  • She assumes that they're a rich couple who decided to elope, and doesn't wake them, but she does go to ask her neighbors about what to do.
  • They wake up a few minutes later, and have a vague fear that something's wrong, so they set out again.
  • Angel decides that they had better avoid London and try to make for Bristol, a coastal town where they can find a ship, instead.
  • They head cross-country, and walk well into the night.
  • The moon is behind a cloud, and they almost walk into a huge upright stone.
  • After asking themselves where they could possibly be, they feel around and discover that they're in a huge circle of upright stones, some of which have equally huge stones lying crossways above them.
  • It's Stonehenge, they realize. (Stonehenge is an ancient monument or temple – experts still don't know exactly what it was used for, but the current hypothesis is that it was used for astronomy and star mapping. It's older than old.)
  • Tess stretches out on one of the horizontal stones, which is still warm from the sun, even though it's dark now.
  • She asks Angel to look after 'Liza-Lu if anything should happen to her.
  • Angel promises.
  • Tess goes further, and asks if he would marry 'Liza-Lu if she should die, which she figures she probably will.
  • Angel objects – he doesn't want Tess to die, and it would be kind of weird to marry his sister-in-law.
  • Eventually, Tess falls asleep, and Angel stays next to her, holding her hand.
  • Just as the sun comes up, Angel realizes that they're surrounded by men coming to arrest Tess.
  • He looks for a weapon, but the man in front tells him it's no use.
  • Angel then begs for them at least to allow Tess to finish her sleep, which they agree to.
  • She's not surprised when she wakes up, and says she's ready.

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