Study Guide

Daniel Deronda Chapter 54

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Chapter 54

  • We find out that Grandcourt mostly makes Gwendolen go yachting with him so he can prove that he wears the pants in their relationship. He also just likes yachting.
  • Gwendolen, meanwhile, continues to think that her marriage was a huge mistake.
  • The narrator wonders if Grandcourt has even the teensiest idea about what Gwendolen is thinking right now.
  • To the outside observer, their relationship seems pretty normal. Gwendolen and Grandcourt just sit in silence most of the time.
  • We find out that Gwendolen doesn't want any kids, because she'd just be doing more damage to Lydia's kids – they wouldn't be able to inherit Grandcourt's property anymore.
  • They are at sea for a long time. Grandcourt tells her they're going to stay on the boat as long as he wants to.
  • Then one day he tells them that something has happened with their boat and that they need to stay in Genoa for a week.
  • When they get to Genoa, Gwendolen runs into Daniel on the staircase in the hotel – but she's with Grandcourt. Daniel just tips his hat to them.
  • Grandcourt is more convinced than ever that there's something going on between Gwendolen and Daniel. He thinks that it's a conspiracy against him.
  • One night while they're eating dinner, Grandcourt tells Gwendolen that he's ordering a little sailboat for them to go sailing in. Gwendolen feels like he's trying to keep her in sight at all times. She really doesn't want to go, and she tells him.
  • Grandcourt's like, "Fine, we won't go."
  • Later, Grandcourt asks Gwendolen if she's changed her mind about sailing. They bicker about how they both make life unpleasant for the other.  Gwendolen is like, "Fine, let's go sailing – I hope we drown!"
  • Grandcourt thinks that Gwendolen is crying about Daniel. He tells Gwendolen that it's obvious that Daniel is trying to avoid her.
  • They go out to sail. A couple of people warn them that the wind seems to be about to change. Grandcourt brushes them off.
  • While they're out on the water, Gwendolen feels totally miserable and speaks sarcastically about what an awesome time she's having. Then Grandcourt says they'll do it again the next day and turns the boat around to go home.

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