Study Guide

The Mayor of Casterbridge Chapter 21

By Thomas Hardy

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Chapter 21

  • Elizabeth-Jane goes for a walk that evening and checks out the house where the young lady said she was going to live.
  • It really is right in the middle of downtown – the living room windows face the town square where the market is held.
  • There are lights on in the house, and Elizabeth-Jane imagines the young lady is probably there already.
  • Elizabeth-Jane starts to leave but she sees Henchard coming up the street.
  • She slips into a doorway so he won't see her and scold her.
  • Henchard seemed to be heading to the young lady's house.
  • Elizabeth-Jane doesn't see him knock, though.
  • She hurries home and he arrives only a few minutes after her.
  • She asks him if he would mind if she took a position as a companion in a respectable young lady's home.
  • He has no objection at all and even promises to give her a monthly allowance.
  • The next morning Elizabeth-Jane goes to meet the young lady at the cemetery to tell her that everything is arranged.
  • The young lady finally tells Elizabeth-Jane her name: Miss Templeman.
  • She goes back to Henchard's house to pack.
  • When Henchard sees her on her way out, he regrets sending her away, but it's too late to convince her to stay.
  • He asks her where she's going and she says the name of the house.
  • Henchard seems surprised, but doesn't say anything.

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